Category Archives: Islam

Demand the Iran n Bin Laden Documents

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By STEPHEN F. HAYES and WILLIAM KRISTOL

To paraphrase Lincoln, if we could first know where Iran is and whither Iran is tending, we could then better judge what to do, and how to do it. To evaluate the Iran deal, we need, to the degree possible, to understand the Iranian regime, its nature and its history, its past and present behavior.

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Whither are they tending?

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The bad news is that the Obama administration doesn’t want us to have all the information available to judge that regime and its behavior. The good news is that Congress can insist the information be provided.

Here’s an important instance. We have been told by six current or former intelligence officials that the collection of documents captured in the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound includes explosive information on Iran’s relationship with al Qaeda over the past two decades, including details of Iran’s support for al Qaeda’s attacks on Americans. Some of these officials believe this information alone could derail the deal. We haven’t seen it. But the American people should see it all before Congress votes on the deal in September.

“There are letters about Iran’s role, influence, and acknowledgment of enabling al Qaeda operatives to pass through Iran as long as al Qaeda did their dirty work against the Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan,” Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, tells The Weekly Standard. “What Congress should demand is to see all the UBL [Osama bin Laden] documents related to Iran and all the documents related to intentions of AQ into the future—they are very telling.”

Derek Harvey, a former senior DIA official who has been described by several U.S. generals as the top intelligence analyst in government, helped run the exploitation team. He says,

The UBL treasure trove of information almost certainly contains extremely valuable, insightful information, and potentially explosive, that would illuminate the duplicitous Iran relationship with Osama Bin Laden and al Qaeda writ large.

Michael Pregent, a member of the DIA team that examined the documents, confirmed some of the revelations about Iran. As he put it,

The documents indicate that Iran facilitated the safe passage of al Qaeda operatives, provided safe houses during travel, and had an agreement in place—a you-don’t-mess-with-us-and-we-won’t-mess-with-you clause. The guaranteed safe passage through Iran into Afghanistan and Pakistan could only have been carried out by Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps operatives.

The bin Laden documents have long been the subject of a behind-the-scenes battle between the White House and elements of the intelligence community. After an initial scrub of the documents in the months after the May 2011 raid in Abbottabad, the Obama administration let them sit untouched for as long as a year. When officials at the DIA and Central Command requested access to the collection to extract intelligence and provide it to war fighters, they were initially denied. And soon after the team from DIA and CENTCOM was given limited access to the documents, they were ordered to stop their exploitation. What they did see was illuminating.

Among the most significant were documents that shed new light on the complicated relationship between Iran and al Qaeda. Even the Obama administration has acknowledged the relationship. In 2011, the administration designated six al Qaeda operatives who were responsible for what officials described as al Qaeda’s lifeline. The network was based in Iran. “This network serves as the core pipeline through which al Qaeda moves money, facilitators, and operatives,” according to the Treasury Department’s designation. In an interview with The Weekly Standard at the time, a senior Obama administration official involved in the designation said, “Without this network, al Qaeda’s ability to recruit and collect funds would be severely damaged.”

David Cohen, then undersecretary of the Treasury for terrorism and financial intelligence and currently the deputy director of the CIA, told The Weekly Standard the intelligence on Iran’s support for al Qaeda was incontrovertible. “There is an agreement between the Iranian government and al Qaeda to allow this network to operate,” Cohen said. “There’s no dispute in the intelligence community on this.” Those conclusions were based, at least in part, on the bin Laden documents.

Contacted about the status of al Qaeda’s Iran network earlier this spring, two intelligence officials confirmed that it was still functioning and still critical to al Qaeda operations. That’s not all.

We are told that one document fills in the picture of possible Iranian foreknowledge and complicity in the 9/11 attacks first raised in the 9/11 Commission report, published in 2004. According to the report, al Qaeda detainees in U.S. custody

described the willingness of Iranian officials to facilitate the travel of al Qaeda members through Iran, on their way to and from Afghanistan. For example, Iranian border inspectors would be told not to place telltale stamps in the passports of these travelers. Such arrangements were particularly beneficial to Saudi members of al Qaeda. Our knowledge of the international travels of the al Qaeda operatives selected for the 9/11 operation remains fragmentary. But we now have evidence suggesting that 8 to 10 of the 14 Saudi “muscle” operatives traveled into or out of Iran between October 2000 and February 2001.

The 9/11 Commission detailed much of that travel and reported:

There is strong evidence that Iran facilitated the transit of al Qaeda members into and out of Afghanistan before 9/11, and that some of these were future 9/11 hijackers. There also is circumstantial evidence that senior Hezbollah operatives were closely tracking the travel of some of these future muscle hijackers into Iran in November 2000.

The commission concluded: “We believe this topic requires further investigation by the U.S. government.”

The Obama administration does not want the bin Laden documents released. To date, the administration has made public fewer than 150 documents out of more than a million, despite a statutory requirement to expedite the release of the collection. Remarkably, members of Congress, including those on the intelligence committees, do not have access to the documents. Republicans in Congress share the blame for this. With the admirable exception of Representative Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Republicans have shown little interest in the documents and what they tell us about al Qaeda and, in this case, Iran. That’s inexcusable, but it’s not too late.

The administration claims that the documents have been translated and exploited. We’re skeptical—and so are our sources. But if the administration is right, it should be able to find and release immediately all documents related to Iran.

Highly credible senior intelligence officials who have seen the bin Laden documents say that the collection includes important information about al Qaeda and Iran. The White House has consistently blocked the release of that information. It will take concerted action by the leadership of Congress—in particular, Speaker of the House John Boehner, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Richard Burr along with Chairman Nunes—to wring this information out of the administration.

Not to demand these documents—not to insist on having access to them despite all the administration’s protestations and obfuscations, not to allow the American people to understand the whole truth about the Iranian regime with which the administration has negotiated this agreement—would be an abdication of responsibility on the part of Congress that history would judge harshly.

Can we stop this deadly Iran deal? Contact these Senators we need to target RT

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Can we stop this deadly Iran deal?

Perhaps. (Partially.)

Should we try?

Yes. With every fiber of our being.

To the first point, there are two major hurdles that make stopping this deal nearly impossible.

First, there are the numbers needed in Congress to override Obama’s veto. At this time, the numbers aren’t there. But perhaps we can change that.

Second, even if Congress is able to override Obama’s veto, we cannot stop the full scope of the deal from going into effect. As John Bolton explained during an interview on Fox News, because Obama partnered with European nations, they will still honor the deal irrespective of our actions.

Obama intentionally surrendered our sovereignty to Europe.

And that doesn’t even take into account Russia or China.

According to Bolton, all Congress can do is stop Obama from lifting sanctions. And if that happens, it triggers a clause in the deal that releases Iran from its responsibilities with respect to nuclear agreements.

To the latter point, I’m not convinced it means much. There’s no reason to think Iran would uphold its end of the bargain no matter what the circumstance. Nor am I convinced the deal allows the West any meaningful ability to monitor Iran’s behavior. More importantly, I have no confidence the West would take action against Iran even if they did catch Iran breaking its end of the bargain. Quite the opposite.

But back to the sanctions for a moment. American sanctions have the strongest economic impact on Iran compared to sanctions from other countries. Sanctions relief will also increase the chances that Iran would have enough money to buy a nuclear weapon from another country, such as North Korea. Given the choice between the United States keeping sanctions in place, or not, it’s a no brainer to keep them in place. So while this would not “kill the deal,” as they say, it’s still meaningful.

In addition, a Congressional vote against the deal — one large enough to override Obama’s veto — would send a message to the rest of the world that America does not stand with a nuclear Iran. And we certainly don’t fund it to the tune of 150 billion dollars.

How surreal it is to type these words. We are writing, reading, talking, screaming, raging, witnessing, and fearing our country becoming an enabler of the largest state sponsor of terror in the world. That we are on the verge of helping a nation that wants to destroy us, acquire the weapons to do so. That we are aligning ourselves with the 21st century Hitler. And that we must take action — no less fight a nearly impossible fight — to curb this descent into evil, madness, and hell.

As John Podhoretz wrote in Commentary Magazine:

The United States and its allies have struck a deal with Iran that effectively ensures that it will be a nuclear state with ballistic missiles in 10 years, assuming Iran adheres to the deal’s terms, which is a very large assumption…The president and the secretary of state are making large claims for the deal that are not true; the same will be true of all of its signatories, who are seeing Nobel stars in their eyes…and while those of us who see Iran’s nuclearization as the threshold threat for the rest of the 21st century will not be silent and will not give up the fight against it, it is appropriate to take a moment to despair that we — the United States and the West — have come to this.

Yes. Despair. That it has come to this.

And, yes. Not giving up the fight.

Each of us must do everything in our power to create a small miracle — to maximize the chance that Congress can override the veto of the evil enabler of terror who sits in the oval office.

Will our actions matter? I don’t know. Like many readers, I have become cynical and increasingly hopeless. I have lost confidence that my voice counts for anything.

And yet.

How can any of us live with ourselves if we didn’t do everything possible to ensure a future for ourselves and our children? To live.

You don’t have to be optimistic when taking political action. People can have serious doubts about the outcome of their efforts and still put forth the effort.

And mind you, the effort is nothing monumental. It doesn’t take an enormous amount of time or energy (not that that’s the point). It doesn’t require that we put our life in harm’s way or take a huge risk we are unwilling to take. (Obama is doing that for us.) All we need to do is contact our elected officials to say we are against the Iran deal.

Will they listen? I don’t know. Will they care? I don’t know. The cynic in me believes most are dug in and know how they will vote irrespective of how many call to voice their opposition.

And yet.

Imagine your child or grandchild living in a world with a nuclear Iran. Imagine your child or grandchild asking what you did to try to stop it. And imagine you saying you couldn’t be bothered to take a couple of minutes out of every day for a few weeks to make a few phone calls.

Imagine your child or grandchild asking you why you didn’t do it. And imagine telling them  you couldn’t be bothered because it wouldn’t matter. And when they ask you how you knew it wouldn’t matter, you tell them it hadn’t seemed to matter in the past so you assumed it wouldn’t matter now.

And they say: But still. Why didn’t you try?

And you have to look them in the eye and defend your cynicism and hopelessness, while all-the-while you want them to be fighters.

How can anyone be so cynical, so hopeless, or so apathetic to be unwilling to expend even an ounce of energy to press for votes against this deal?

Because unlike any other dangerous move Obama has made against America, this time the stakes are as high as they get. Obama has shoved the United States (and Israel) in front of a speeding train with barely room to maneuver to free ourselves.

Perhaps this precipice that Obama has brought us to is so unthinkable, so surreal, and so terrifying that it tests the limits of our ability to truly grasp what it means. Perhaps we retreat into denial. Or perhaps the prospect of a nuclear Iran is somewhat abstract. It’s a country far away from us. And maybe we somewhat simplistically think Israel will take care of Iran.

Whatever the case, we cannot allow ourselves to remain passive.

Taking action doesn’t require us to fit into a box or don a label, be it “conservative,” “grass roots,” “activist,” “patriot,” and so on. It’s enough that we’re American. And for that reason, we never give up.

Here is some information for those who will not give up, despite apathy, discouragement, disillusionment, hopelessness, frustration, as well as a hefty dose of rage. Time is of the essence. The vote is days away.

Contact your Senators and Congressional Representative. And do so as often as possible.

Contact those Senators we need to target who may (emphasis on “may”) break with party alliance and vote against the deadly deal. Thanks to Steve Chambers who wrote a piece for AT that provided names and contact information for the Democrats to target. (Note: The first five senators are up for reelection in 2016.)

Michael Bennet (CO) . bennett.senate.gov . (202) 224-5852

Richard Blumenthal (CT) . blumenthal.senate.gov . (202) 224-2823

Barbara Mikulski (MD) . milkulski.senate.gov . (202) 224-4654

Charles Schumer (NY) . schumer.senate.gov . (202) 224-6542

Ron Wyden (OR) . wyden.senate.gov . (202) 224-5244

Ben Cadin (MD) . cadin.senate.gov . (202) 224-4524

Robert P. Casey (PA) . casey.senate.gov . (202) 224-6324

Joe Donnelly (IN) . donnelly.senate.gov . (202) 224-4814

Kirsten Gillibrand (NY) . gillibrand.senate.gov . (202) 224-4451

Heidi Heitkamp (ND) . heitkamp.senate.gov . (202) 224-2043

Joe Manchin (WV) . manchin.senate.gov . (202) 224-3954

Robert Menendez (NJ) . menendez.senate.gov . (202) 224-4744

Bill Nelson (FL) . billnelson.senate.gov . (202) 224-5274

Debbie Stabenow (MI) . stabenow.senate.gov . (202) 224-4822

Cory Booker (NJ) . booker.senate.gov . (202) 224-3224

Gary Peters (MI) . peters.senate.gov . (202) 224-6221

Mark Warner (VA) . warner.senate.gov . (202) 224-2023

Make this deadly deal a topic of interactions with others. Help them grasp the urgency and light a fire under them to speak out. Give them information to help them do so.

Keep printed materials with you to give to others. Print out the contact list, above. Print out talking points. Have materials on hand. Keep them in your car. Give them to people at the dry cleaners, the supermarket, everywhere you go. Help them understand what is at stake.

Use social media to educate others and convince them to take immediate action.

Support organizations that are lobbying Congress against this deal. Christians United for Israel, for example, has created a spin-off lobbying group (CUFI Action Fund) that has made the Iran deal it’s top priority for action.

Many clocks are ticking, ticking, ticking. Counting down to an Iran nuclear break out. Counting down to the 2016 presidential election. But the clock that will run out sooner than either of these is the one counting down the number of days before Congress votes on the Iran deal.

I implore every reader to take action.

Orwell could never have imagined this level of madness.

But here we are.

Deputy Hamas:.@browardsheriff makes excuses for why a leader of CAIR aka Hamas is his Deputy

Joe Kaufman//In response to this author’s article published in FrontPage Magazine last Friday about how CAIR leader Nezar Hamze is now a Deputy Sheriff at the Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO), Sheriff Scott Israel appeared on WFTL-Fort Lauderdale’s Joyce Kaufman radio show to discuss the matter. On the show, Israel made a number of weak excuses as to why this has taken place. The following report will challenge these excuses, in an effort to expose this wrongdoing.

Since the beginning of this year, Sheriff Scott Israel has been hopping around from radical mosque to radical mosque, getting his smiling face photographed with a number of known Muslim extremists in South Florida. It turns out, during that time period, he has had his own Muslim extremist liaison to introduce him to those radical mosques, Nezar Hamze, the local head of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and now Deputy Sheriff.

This past Friday, Sheriff Israel made an appearance on the Joyce Kaufman show, a popular local conservative radio program, to discuss the subject of Deputy Hamze and whether or not this author was right in stating that, due to Hamze’s background as a leader of a Hamas-associated group and other issues, he should not be eligible to serve as a Deputy Sheriff.

On the show, Sheriff Israel stated that Hamze’s application had been vetted, that “it was looked at from every angle that one would expect.”

But did those who were involved in the vetting process account for the fact that Hamze was at the time involved in a group widely known to be associated with terrorism, that group being CAIR?

CAIR was founded in June 1994 as being part of the American Palestine Committee, an umbrella organization acting as a terrorist enterprise run by then-global head of Hamas, Mousa Abu Marzook. Marzook is currently based in Egypt as the number two leader in Hamas. If it were not for Marzook, neither CAIR nor any of its local chapters would exist today.

One of CAIR’s siblings within the Palestine Committee was the Holy Land Foundation (HLF), then-U.S. financing arm of Hamas. When two federal trials took place against HLF, in 2007 and 2008, for the raising of millions of dollars for Hamas, CAIR was named by the U.S. Justice Department a co-conspirator for both. On its official website, under a photo of the World Trade Center in flames, CAIR had placed a link for its followers to donate funds directly to HLF. The link was perversely disguised as a fundraiser for victims of the September 11 attacks.

In a separate trial in 2007, federal prosecutors stated the following regarding CAIR: “Moreover, from its founding by Muslim Brotherhood leaders, CAIR conspired with other affiliates of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists,” and “the conspirators agreed to use deception to conceal from the American public their connections to terrorists.”

On Joyce Kaufman’s radio show, Sheriff Israel said that he was “very familiar with CAIR” and that he knew that CAIR was labeled a co-conspirator for the HLF trials, but he said that CAIR was “not listed on [sic] the FBI/Homeland Security as a terrorist organization.”

So what the Sheriff was saying is that, if a candidate for Deputy Sheriff is a leader of a group that is largely associated with a terrorist organization, such as Hamas – Hamas, a group incidentally that Hamze has repeatedly refused to denounce – but is not involved in the terrorist organization itself, he is still a potential candidate for the job.

At one point, Sheriff Israel said that the issue of CAIR shouldn’t even be part of the discussion regarding Hamze. He stated, “[T]his isn’t about CAIR. This isn’t about any organization. This is about the Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the citizens of Broward County.”

To the contrary, this is very much about CAIR and other troubling issues as well.

Another disturbing association of Hamze’s is his relationship with Miami Islamist Sofian Abdelaziz Zakkout. Zakkout, the Director of the American Muslim Association of North America (AMANA), is a devout follower of both Hamas and white supremacist David Duke. Zakkout’s Facebook page is littered with Hamas logos and photos of masked Hamas militants and Hamas leaders, as well as a number of links to David Duke interviews and videos. His YouTube page contains an image of Hitler and videos of Hamas militants building bombs and firing rockets.

Over a graphic of deceased Hamas leaders – including Hamas founders Ahmed Yassin and Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi – which Zakkout posted on Facebook this past February, he wrote the following violent threat in Arabic, “It is an obligation and it is mentioned in the Quran to defend the land and the population. It is an obligation to kill those who left our religion. It is an obligation to kill those who fight our religion and to intimidate our enemies and the enemies of the religion. Everything is from the Quran, not from me.” And he signed it, “Sofian.”

In July 2014, Zakkout organized a pro-Hamas rally held in Downtown Miami, where the crowd chanted loudly a number of anti-Jewish and pro-Hamas slogans. Zakkout is shown on video with a huge grin on his face, as his mob repeatedly screams, “We are Hamas.” The rally was co-sponsored by Hamze’s CAIR-Florida. Following the event, Zakkout wrote in Arabic on his Facebook page, “Thank God, every day we conquer the American Jews like our conquests over the Jews of Israel!”

In August 2013, at another CAIR-Florida sponsored event that was run by Zakkout, which was advertised as a rally to stop bloodshed and violence in Egypt and Syria, participants were featured wearing t-shirts and holding signs displaying the Muslim Brotherhood four-finger ‘Rabaa’ logo on them. One rally goer held up a photo of jailed Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi. Both the Muslim Brotherhood and the logo have been banned by the Egyptian government for respectively being an institution and a symbol of terrorism.

Hamze and Zakkout have taken a number of photos together. One, which was posted by Zakkout on his Facebook page in February 2014, shows the two smiling with their arms around each other, with a caption that reads, “AMANA and CAIR united at ICNA event.”

ICNA or the Islamic Circle of North America has been involved in the financing of both Hamas and al-Qaeda and has used the web to promote a number of terrorist groups, including Hamas, al-Qaeda, Hezbollah and the Taliban. ICNA conducts annual functions along with the Muslim American Society (MAS), a group that has been named (along with CAIR) to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) government list of international terrorist organizations.

In August 2006, ICNA’s main charity, ICNA Relief, was the top donor and partner to Pakistani charity Al Khidmat Foundation (AKF), at the same time AKF took a delegation to Damascus, Syria to hand deliver nearly $100,000 to then and current global Hamas leader, Khaled Mashal. Mashal thanked the group and said Hamas would continue to wage “jihad” (war) on the “Zionist yoke” (Israel). ICNA Relief continues to work directly with AKF overseas.

Photos show Hamze volunteering for ICNA Relief, in December 2013.

In 2012, Hamze began meetings at the Broward Sheriff’s Office and elsewhere under the guise of a group called Florida Muslim Congress, inviting into the Sheriff’s premises Zakkout and other South Florida Islamists to meet with the BSO but more like infiltrate the BSO. The group’s stated goal was “to help ordinary citizens understand terrorism laws and avoid being accidentally linked to extremists” (i.e. extremists such as themselves). The group was established during former Sheriff Al Lamberti’s tenure and continued with the blessing of Sheriff Israel.

Both Hamze’s group CAIR and Zakkout’s group AMANA share the same legal advisor, Muslim convert Wilfredo Amr Ruiz, who has also attended the Florida Muslim Congress meetings.

During the radio show, Sheriff Israel made the false comparison between a drug counselor, who used to be an addict, and Hamze. He stated, “It has been proven that the best drug counselors in the world are actually former addicts, who can relate, who can understand. So if you want to get these guys in a specific community, isn’t it the best thing to get people – tried and true people – who belong to that community, who that community will believe in?”

The reason why this is a false comparison is because Hamze never left his radical Islamic life. He is still a leader of CAIR, a group that tells Muslims suspected of criminal activity not to talk to the FBI. Hamze is the Regional Operations Director of CAIR-Florida. He still attends radical conferences. And he obviously has not broken ties with his friend Zakkout.

Nezar Hamze associates with Muslim extremists, and he is one himself. As such, contrary to what Sheriff Israel claims, Hamze will most likely either tip his friends off to any pending investigations or arrests or, at the very least, look the other way.

Sheriff Israel told the radio hostess that he “absolutely” knows the difference between radical Islam and ordinary Muslims, but nothing could be further from the truth.

In 2015 alone, Israel has been photographed with Zakkout; with Maulana Shafayat Mohamed who has been thrown off different Broward County boards for his bigotry against homosexuals; with attorney Khurrum Wahid who represents high-profile al-Qaeda terrorists and has himself been placed on a terror watch list; and with Abdur Rahman al-Ghani who is quoted as saying “Zionist/Israelis… are demonic and the most evil on earth” and “Allah has decreed we will overtake the world in numbers” and posted on Facebook that the CIA should be “wiped-out.”

On the radio show, Sheriff Israel also took the opportunity to play the ‘race card.’ He said that “as Sheriff, I have to be reflective of Broward County… We don’t discriminate. As a Jew, I don’t want to be discriminated against. We’re a color-blind organization. We make sure we treat people with dignity and respect.”

Neither this author nor the radio talk show hostess, who interviewed the Sheriff, ever stated that he should discriminate against Muslims. That said, Nezar Hamze is a leader of a group that is closely linked to the terrorist organization Hamas, the same Hamas that Hamze has, in the recent past, refused to denounce. As well, Hamze has associated and continues to associate with those who support terror and bigotry.

Refusing to hire someone like Hamze or releasing someone like Hamze would clearly not be a case of anti-Muslim discrimination. It is simply common sense.

Finally, during the interview, Sheriff Israel tried to shift potential blame for the hiring of Hamze to the previous Sheriff, Al Lamberti. At the beginning of the interview, he stated, “Deputy Hamze – this is very important – was first hired as a police cadet by former Sheriff Al Lamberti. He met this guy. He hired him. He paid for him to go through the police academy up in Palm Beach County.” And later, he stated, “And the Sheriff that I defeated brought him to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, so it wasn’t somebody that we went out and recruited.”

However, Sheriff Israel admitted, during the interview, that he personally hired Hamze to be Deputy Sheriff. He stated, “He Graduated from the police academy and applied for the Broward Sheriff’s Office. At the time he applied for the Sheriff’s Office, I had soundly defeated Lamberti; I was the Sheriff of Broward County, and I dealt with the application.” He later stated, “I approved his hiring.”

In the hiring of Hamze, while it never should have taken place, it matters little now whose fault that was. What matters now is that this wrong gets rectified.

CAIR leader Nezar Hamze is an Islamic extremist who cavorts with radical Muslim individuals and organizations. He should not be wearing a law enforcement uniform or badge, and he certainly should not be permitted to carry a gun. He should instead be investigated for his leadership in a group that is connected to terrorists overseas.

To allow him to continue to serve in the Broward Sheriff’s Office is an embarrassment and affront to the great institution of law enforcement and a threat to local and national security.

He must be removed from his position immediately.

If you wish to contact Sheriff Israel to discuss this matter, you can do so by sending an e-mail to: ask_the_sheriff@sheriff.org, or you can call the Broward Sheriff’s Office, at 954-764-4357. Please be respectful in any and all communications with this office.

Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.

Why Muslim Rapists Prefer Blondes

Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center

The Muslim penchant to target “white” women for sexual exploitation—an epidemic currently plaguing Europe, especially Britain and Scandinavia—is as old as Islam itself, and even traces back to Muhammad.

Much literary evidence attests to this in the context of Islam’s early predations on Byzantium (for centuries, Christendom’s easternmost bulwark against the jihad).  According to Ahmad M. H. Shboul (author of “Byzantium and the Arabs: The Image of the Byzantines as Mirrored in Arabic Literature”) Christian Byzantium was the “classic example of the house of war,” or Dar al-Harb—that is, the quintessential realm that needs to be conquered by jihad.  Moreover, Byzantium was seen “as a symbol of military and political power and as a society of great abundance.”

The similarities between pre-modern Islamic views of Byzantium and modern Islamic views of the West—powerful, affluent, desirable, and the greatest of all infidels—should be evident.  But they do not end here.  To the medieval Muslim mind, Byzantium was further representative of “white people”—fair haired/eyed Christians, or, as they were known in Arabic, Banu al-Asfar, “children of yellow” (reference to blonde hair).

Continues Shboul:

The Byzantines as a people were considered as fine examples of physical beauty, and youthful slaves and slave-girls of Byzantine origin were highly valued….  The Arab’s appreciation of the Byzantine female has a long history indeed.  For the Islamic period, the earliest literary evidence we have is a hadith (saying of the Prophet).  Muhammad is said to have addressed a newly converted [to Islam] Arab: “Would you like the girls of Banu al-Asfar?”  Not only were Byzantine slave girls sought after for caliphal and other palaces (where some became mothers of future caliphs), but they also became the epitome of physical beauty, home economy, and refined accomplishments.   The typical Byzantine maiden who captures the imagination of litterateurs and poets, had blond hair, blue or green eyes, a pure and healthy visage, lovely breasts, a delicate waist, and a body that is like camphor or a flood of dazzling light.[1]

While the essence of the above excerpt is true, the reader should not be duped by its overly “romantic” tone. Written for a Western academic publication by an academic of Muslim background, the essay is naturally euphemistic to the point of implying that being a sex slave was desirable—as if her Arab owners were enamored devotees who merely doted over and admired her beauty from afar.[2]

Indeed, Muhammad asked a new convert “Would you like the girls of Banu al-Asfar?” as a way to entice him to join the jihad and reap its rewards—which, in this case, included the possibility of enslaving and raping blonde Byzantine women—not as some idealistic discussion on beauty.

This enticement seems to have backfired with another Muslim who refused Muhammad’s call to invade Byzantine territory (the Tabuk campaign).  “O Abu Wahb,” cajoled Muhammad, “would you not like to have scores of Byzantine women and men as concubines and servants?” Wahb responded: “O Messenger of Allah, my people know that I am very fond of women and, if I see the women of the Byzantines, I fear I will not be able to hold back. So do not tempt me by them, and allow me not to join and, instead, I will assist you with my wealth.”[3]  The prophet agreed but was apparently unimpressed—after all, Wahb could have all the Byzantine women he desired if the jihad succeeded—and a new Sura for the Koran (9:49) was promptly delivered condemning the man to hell for his reported hypocrisy and failure to join the jihad.

Thus a more critical reading of Shboul’s aforementioned excerpt finds that European slave girls were not “highly valued” or “appreciated” as if they were precious statues—they were held out as sexual trophies to entice Muslims to the jihad.

Moreover, the idea that some sex slaves became mothers to future caliphs is meaningless since in Islam’s patriarchal culture, mothers—Muslim or non-Muslim—were irrelevant in lineage and had no political status.   And talk of “litterateurs and poets” and “a body that is like camphor or a flood of dazzling light” is further anachronistic and does a great disservice to reality:  These women were—as they still are—sex slaves, treated no differently than the many slaves of the Islamic State today.

For example, during a recent sex slave auction held by the Islamic State, blue and green eyed Yazidi girls were much coveted and fetched the highest price.  Even so, these concubines are being cruelly tortured.  In one instance, a Muslim savagely beat his Yazidi slave’s one year old child until she agreed to meet all his sexual demands.

—–

Another relevant parallel between medieval and modern Islamic views exists: white women were and continue to be seen as sexually promiscuous by nature—essentially “provoking” Muslim men into lusting after them.

Much of this is discussed in Byzantium Viewed by the Arabs by Nadia Maria El Cheikh.  She writes:

Fitna, [an Islamic term] meaning disorder and chaos, refers also to the beautiful femme fatale who makes men lose their self-control.  Fitna is a key concept in defining the dangers that women, more particularly their bodies, were capable of provoking in the mental universe of the Arab Muslims.

After explaining how the fair haired/eyed Byzantine woman exemplified Islam’s femme fatale of fitna, Cheikh writes:

In our [Muslim] texts, Byzantine women are strongly associated with sexual immorality…

Our sources show not Byzantine women but [Muslim] writers’ images of these women, who served as symbols of the eternal female—constantly a potential threat, particularly due to blatant exaggerations of their sexual promiscuity….

Cheikh documents how Muslims claimed that Byzantine (or “white Christian”) females were the “most shameless women in the whole world”; that, “because they find sex more enjoyable, they are prone to adultery”; that “adultery is commonplace in the cities and markets of Byzantium”—so much so that “the nuns from the convents went out to the fortresses to offer themselves to monks.”

Concludes Cheikh:

While the one quality that our [Muslim] sources never deny is the beauty of Byzantine women, the image that they create in describing these women is anything but beautiful.  Their depictions are, occasionally, excessive, virtually caricatures, overwhelmingly negative….

Such anecdotes [of sexual promiscuity] are clearly far from Byzantine reality and must be recognized for what they are: attempts to denigrate and defame a rival culture through their exaggeration of the laxity with which Byzantine culture dealt with its women….

In fact, in Byzantium, women were expected to be retiring, shy, modest, and devoted to their families and religious observances….  [T]he behavior of most women in Byzantium was a far cry from the depictions that appear in Arabic sources.”[4]

—–

Based on all the above, some historic facts emerge: Byzantium was long viewed by early Muslims as the most powerful, advanced, and wealthy “infidel” empire, one highly desired—not unlike modern Islamic views of the West today. And Byzantine women, or “white women,” were long viewed as the “femme fatale” of Islam—from a carnal perspective, the most desired, from a pious perspective, the most despised of women.

Turning to today, we find all these same patterns at work—including the idea that “white women” are naturally promiscuous and provoke pious Muslim men into raping them.  Thus last December in the UK, while a Muslim man raped a British woman, he told her that “you white women are good at it”—thereby echoing that ancient Islamic motif concerning the alleged promiscuity of white women.

The UK is also home to one of the most notorious Muslim-led sex ring scandals: in Rotherham and elsewhere, thousands of young native British girls have been systematically groomed, trafficked, beaten and sexually abused by Muslims—even as the “multiculturalist” authorities and police stood by and watched. (For more on the UK scandal and Islamic law on sex slavery click here).

In fact, all throughout Europe—particularly in the Nordic nations—thousands of “Byzantine-type” women have been violently raped and egregiously beaten by Muslims. In Norway, Denmark, and Sweden—where fair hair and eyes predominate—rape has astronomically risen since those nations embraced the doctrine of multiculturalism and opened their doors to tens of thousands of Muslim immigrants.

According to Gatestone Institute, “Forty years after the Swedish parliament unanimously decided to change the formerly homogenous Sweden into a multicultural country, violent crime has increased by 300% and rapes by 1,472%.”  The overwhelming majority of rapists are Muslim immigrants.  The epidemic is so bad that some blonde haired Scandinavian women are dying their hair black in the hopes of warding off potential Muslim predators.

Nor is this phenomenon a product of chance; some modern day Muslims actually advocate for it.  Back in 2011, a female politician and activist trying to combat sexual immorality in Kuwait suggested that Muslims import white sex slaves.  After explaining how she once asked Islamic clerics living in the city of Mecca concerning the legality of sex slavery and how they all confirmed it to be perfectly legitimate, she explained:

A Muslim state must [first] attack a Christian state—sorry, I mean any non-Muslim state—and they [the women, the future sex slaves] must be captives of the raid. Is this forbidden? Not at all; according to Islam, sex slaves are not at all forbidden. [See here, here, and here for more on Islamic law and sex slavery.]

As for what sort of “infidel” women are ideal, the Kuwaiti activist suggested Russian women (most of whom are fair haired and eyed; ironically, Russia is often seen as Byzantium’s successor):

In the Chechnya war, surely there are female Russian captives. So go and buy those and sell them here in Kuwait; better that than have our men engage in forbidden sexual relations. I don’t see any problem in this, no problem at all.

In short, the ongoing epidemic in the UK, Scandinavia and elsewhere—whereby Muslim men sexually target white women—is as old as Islam, has precedents with the prophet and his companions, and, till this day, is being recommended as a legitimate practice by some in the Muslim world.

Notes:

1. Shboul’s essay is found in Arab-Byzantine Relations in Early Islamic Times (ed. Michael Bonner, Burlington: Ashgate Publishing, 2004), 240, 248.

2. This apologetic approach is also found in modern academic works discussing the janissaries—European Christian boys who were seized by the Ottoman Empire, converted to and indoctrinated in Islam, trained to be jihadis extraordinaire, and then unleashed on their former Christian families.  Although young, terrified boys were seized from the clutches of their devastated parents, modern academics claim that Christian families actually hoped their boys would be taken and trained as janissaries, as this would ensure that they have a “bright future” in the Ottoman hierarchy.

3. Arabic tafsir here: http://www.altafsir.com/Tafasir.asp?tMadhNo=1&tTafsirNo=5&tSoraNo=9&tAyahNo=49&tDisplay=yes&UserProfile=0&LanguageId=1 A shorter version of the narrative also appears in Ibn Ishaq, The Life of Muhammad (trans. A. Guillaume, NY: Oxford University Press, 1997), 602-603.

4. Nadia Maria el Cheikh, Byzantium Viewed by the Arabs (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2004), 123-129.

 

 

Iran’s Rhetoric and Arafat’s Jihad Speech

The Obama Administration’s weak response to Iran’s latest belligerent rhetoric is reminiscent of how the U.S. responded to one of Yasser Arafat’s most infamous speeches -and illustrates one of the main dangers of the Iran nuclear agreement.

Just four days after the nuclear deal was signed in Vienna, with the ink on the agreement barely dry, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei denounced America’s “arrogance” and vowed that despite the agreement, Iran would continue “supporting our friends in Palestine, Lebanon” and elsewhere. In other words, it will continue giving weapons to Hamas and Hezbollah.

According to Reuters, excited members of the audience periodically shouted “Death to America!” and “Death to Israel” during Khamenei’s speech. Khamenei didn’t seem to mind. No surprise there. Just days earlier, his government had sponsored rallies at which millions of Iranians nationwide chanted those same hate slogans.

Obama Administration officials had nothing to say about Khamenei’s hostile and threatening rhetoric. They hoped nobody would notice. And they almost got away with it, thanks to the indifference of the major news media. But three days later, Secretary of State John Kerry was interviewed on the Saudi television station Al-Arabiya, and the interviewer raised the issue.

Secretary Kerry was clearly uncomfortable about having to address the topic. Squirming in his seat and stumbling in his words, Kerry finally acknowledged that “if it [Khamanei’s rhetoric] is the policy [of Iran], it’s very disturbing.”

Very disturbing? It goes directly to the heart of the deal that Kerry and Obama just signed. This is an agreement based on the claim that Iran has become “moderate” and “pragmatic” and now wants to coexist peacefully with the United States. Everything Khamenei said contradicted Obama’s image of Tehran. That’s not just “very disturbing.” It should be considered a game-changer.

But the Obama Administration is playing a different game, in which the reality of Arab or Muslim belligerence is never a deal-breaker. It’s painfully reminiscent of how the Clinton Administration responded to Yasser Arafat’s infamous “jihad” speech.

Remember that? It was the spring of 1994, just months after the signing of the Israel-PLO Oslo Accords. The Clinton Administration was devoutly committed to the accords, even to the point of downplaying the mounting evidence of Palestinian violations.

Arafat was visiting South Africa, and delivered a speech at the Mayfair Mosque in Johannesburg on May 11. It was probably a routine stump speech. But in those days, the internet was new, and monitoring groups like Palestinian Media Watch didn’t yet exist, so very little information about Arafat’s Arabic language speeches ever reached the American public.

But word of this speech leaked out. Israeli media reported that Arafat had assured his Muslim listeners that the Oslo Accords are “the first step and not more than that,” and he vowed, “The Jihad will continue!” He urged his audience, “You have to come , and to fight, and to start the Jihad to liberate Jerusalem!”

The Clinton Administration did its best to play down the news. Secretary of State Warren Christopher grudgingly said he would seek a “clarification” from Arafat. U.S. officials couldn’t find the translation. Some of them told reporters that “jihad” did not always mean violence. Before long, it was out of the news.

It would take eight years for the world to wake up. In 2002, Israel intercepted the Karine A, a Palestinian Authority ship with several tons of weapons for Arafat’s “jihad.” But think how many lives would have been saved – how many terrorist attacks between 1994 and 2002 would have been preempted – if Washington had taken Arafat’s 1994 speech seriously.

Recognizing the enemy’s true character – whether it’s the Palestinian Authority or Iran – may not serve some political agendas in the short run, but it will save a lot of lives in the long run.

Mr. Korn, the former executive editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent and the Miami Jewish Tribune, is chairman of the Philadelphia Religious Zionists.

Obama BFF’s in Turkey Uses ISIS as Excuse to Attack Kurds

  • It appears as if the Turkish government is using ISIS as a pretext to attack the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party).
  • Turkey just announced that its air base at Incirlik will soon be open to coalition forces, presumably to fight ISIS. But the moment Turkey started bombing, it targeted Kurdish positions in Iraq, in addition to targeting ISIS positions in Syria.
  • In Turkey, millions of indigenous Kurds are continually terrorized and murdered, but ISIS terrorists can freely travel and use official border crossings to go to Syria and return to Turkey; they are even treated at Turkish hospitals.
  • If this is how the states that rule over Kurds treat them, why is there even any question as to whether the Kurds should have their own self-government?

Turkey’s government seems to be waging a new war against the Kurds, now struggling to get an internationally recognized political status in Syrian Kurdistan.

On July 24, Turkish media sources reported that Turkish jet fighters bombed Kurdish PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) bases in Qandil, in Iraqi Kurdistan, as well as the Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria.

Turkey is evidently unsettled by the rapprochement the PKK seems to be establishing with the U.S. and Europe. Possibly alarmed by the PKK’s victories against ISIS, as well as its strengthening international standing, Ankara, in addition to targeting ISIS positions in Syria, has been bombing the PKK positions in the Qandil mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan, where the PKK headquarters are located.

There is no ISIS in Qandil.

As expected, many Turkish media outlets were more enthusiastic about the Turkish air force’s bombing the Kurdish militia than about bombing ISIS. “The camps of the PKK,” they excitedly reported, “have been covered with fire.”

It appears as if Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is using ISIS as a pretext to attack the PKK. Ankara just announced that its air base at Incirlik will soon be open to coalition forces, presumably to fight ISIS, but the moment Turkey started bombing, it targeted Kurdish positions. Those attacks not only open a new era of death and destruction, but also bring an end to all possibilities of resolving Turkey’s Kurdish issue non-violently.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu announced that

“a second wave operation against Daesh [ISIS] in Syria was started. Just after that, a very comprehensive operation was carried out against the camps of the terrorist organization PKK in northern Iraq. I am glad that the targets were hit with great success. We have given instructions to start a third wave operation in Syria and a second wave operation in Iraq.”

The “great success” of the Turkish military has brought much damage and injury to even Kurdish civilians — including children. The Kurdish newspaper Rudaw reported that two Kurdish villagers in Duhok’s Berwari region were carried to hospital in the aftermath of a Turkish artillery bombardment in the Amediye region. One of the victims was 12 years old. The second victim lost a leg in an airstrike. Four members of the PKK were killed and several others were injured.

Shortly after military operations against the PKK started, access to the websites of pro-Kurdish newspapers and news agencies was denied “by decree of court.” These websites — including Fırat News Agency (ANF), Dicle News Agency (DIHA), Hawar News Agency (ANHA), Ozgur Gundem newspaper, Yuksekova News, Rudaw and BasNews — are still blocked in Turkey.

ISIS, meanwhile, has not so far made any statement regarding Turkey’s so-called bombings of ISIS in any of its media outlets.

Had the Turkish military attacked the PKK alone, and not in addition to attacking ISIS, it would probably have received widespread international condemnation. So to add “legitimacy” to its attacks against the Kurdish PKK — whose affiliate Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria and its armed wing, the Kurdish People’s Defense Units (YPG) have been resisting ISIS and other Islamist terrorist groups since 2013 — Turkey declared that it will also attack ISIS. This would give it cover for its attacks against Kurdish fighters.

In 2014, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan described the plan he wanted to carry out in Syria and Iraq: “The problem in Syria should be taken into account. Iraq too should be considered similarly. Moreover, there needs to be a solution that will also deal with the Syrian wing [PYD] of the separatist terrorist organization [PKK].”

The AKP government, dissatisfied with the results of last month’s parliamentary elections, also seems to want to hold new elections, to push the mainly Kurdish HDP Party below the required 10% threshold, and thus force them out of parliament. Perhaps the government thinks that bombing the PKK will generate Turkish nationalist enthusiasm that will work in the AKP’s favor to help it regain a majority in early elections.

Apparently, Turkey does not need Kurdish deputies in its parliament. Apparently, the state prefers to slaughter or arrest the Kurds — as it has done for decades. Why hold talks and reach a democratic resolution when you have the power to murder people wholesale?[1]

Sadly, Turkey has preferred not to form a “Turkish-Kurdish alliance” to destroy ISIS. First, Turkey has opened its borders to ISIS, enabling the growth of the terrorist group. And now, at the first opportunity, it is bombing the Kurds again. According to this strategy, “peace” will be possible only when Kurds submit to Turkish supremacism and abandon their goal of being an equal nation.

In the meantime, Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkish minister of foreign affairs, said that the Incirlik air base in Turkey has not yet been opened for use by the U.S. and other coalition forces, but that it will be opened in the upcoming period.

Kurdish forces, therefore, are the only forces that are truly resisting the Islamic State.

They have been repressed by Baghdad and murdered by Turkey and Iran.

If this is how the states that rule over Kurds treat them, why is there even any question as to whether the Kurds should have their own self-government?

As a result of the ISIS attacks in the region, the Kurdish PKK — as well as its Syrian Kurdish affiliate, Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing, Kurdish People’s Defense Units (YPG) — have emerged as the America’s most effective battlefield partners against ISIS. Ever since ISIS became a major force in Syria, the U.S. has apparently relied heavily on YPG to stop ISIS from advancing. According to Henri Barkey, a former State Department specialist on Turkey, “The U.S. has become the YPG’s air force and the YPG has become the U.S.’s ground force in Syria.”

* * *

Attacks on the Kurds were already under way last week. On July 20, a bomb attack in the Kurdish town of Suruc (Pirsus) in Turkey killed 32 people during a meeting of young humanitarian activists, who were discussing the reconstruction of the neighboring Kurdish town of Kobane.

The scene of the suicide bombing in Suruc, Turkey. An ISIS suicide bomber murdered 32 people and wounded more than 100 others in a July 20 attack on Kurdish humanitarian activists. (Image source: VOA video screenshot)

The blast took place while the activists were making a statement to the press in the garden of a cultural center. At least 100 others, mostly university students, were wounded. (Graphic video of the explosion)

The suicide bomber was identified through DNA testing, according to reports in the Turkish news media. Seyh Abdurrahman Alagoz was reportedly a 20-year-old Turkish university student, recently returned from Syria, and believed to have had ties to ISIS.

Alagoz targeted a meeting 300 secular activists, members of the Federation of Socialist Youth Associations (SGDF), who gathered at a cultural center in the province of Urfa, opposite the Kurdish town of Kobane in Syrian Kurdistan. As part of an effort to rebuild Kobane, they were preparing to provide aid, give toys to the children there and build a hospital, school, nursery, children’s park, library and a memorial forest for those who had lost their lives in Kobane.

“Work on the building of hospitals and schools needs to be done,” Oguz Yuzgec, the co-president of the federation, said before the explosion. “One of the things we will do is to build a children’s park in Kobane. We will name it after Emre Aslan, who died fighting in Kobane. We are collecting toys. We will participate in the construction of the nursery that the canton of Kobane is planning to build. We have the responsibility of helping the nursery function. We need everybody who knows how to draw and can teach children.”

Mazlum Demirtas, a survivor of the attack, said: “The main one responsible for this incident is the state of Turkey, the AKP fascism, the AKP dictatorship. … It attacked us with its gunmen and gangs. Since yesterday, parents have been collecting the dismembered body parts of their children. They are trying to identify the dismembered bodies. This is called fascism, inhumanity and barbarity.”

Pinar Gayip, another survivor of the attack, said in a telephone interview on the pro-government Haberturk TV that, “Instead of helping the wounded, the murderer-police of the murderer-AKP threw tear gas at the vehicles with which we carried the wounded.” She was taken off the air.

All across Turkish Kurdistan, there were protests condemning the massacre and the government’s alleged involvement in it. Police in Istanbul used plastic bullets and water cannons against people who gathered to remember those murdered in Suruc.

The Turkish authorities briefly blocked access to Twitter last Wednesday to prevent the people from viewing photos of the bombing in Suruc. Officials admitted that Turkey had asked Twitter to remove 107 URLs (web addresses) with images related to the bombing; before the ban, Twitter had already removed 50.

Selahattin Demirtas, the co-chair of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Party (HDP), said that state surveillance activities were intensive in Suruc, and that the intelligence service was recording the identity of everyone traveling to and from Suruc.

As Demirtas’s own convoy had recently not been permitted to enter Suruc, he emphasized the extent of state surveillance in the town, and said that nobody could argue that someone could have managed to infiltrate the crowd and carry out the suicide attack without state support.

“Today, we have witnessed in Suruc yet again what an army of barbarity and rape, an army that has lost human dignity, can do,” Demirtas said. “Those who have been silent in the face of ISIS, who have not dared even raise their voice to it, as well as the officials in Ankara who threaten even the HDP every day but caress the head of ISIS, are the accomplices of this barbarity.”

In the meantime, Mehmet Gormez, the head of the Turkish Presidency of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), announced on its Twitter account that the perpetrators of the Suruc attack do not have religion.

However, three days before the massacre in Suruc, about 100 Islamists — alleged to be ISIS sympathizers — had performed mass Islamic Eid prayers in Istanbul. They demanded Islamic sharia law instead of democracy. ISIS sympathizers had performed the same Eid prayers at the same place the year before, as well.

Over the border in Syrian Kurdistan, shortly after the blast in Suruc, a suicide bomber detonated a car bomb at a checkpoint in Kobane. Two Kurdish fighters were killed in the explosion, according to Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Last month, a deadly blast hit the Kurdish province of Diyarbakir in Turkey, during an election rally of the pro-Kurdish HDP that was attended by tens of thousands of people. Just before the HDP co-chair Selahattin Demirtas was going to speak, two bombs exploded at different places. Four people were killed, and more than 100 people are estimated to have been wounded. One of the wounded, Lisa Calan, 28, a Kurdish art director from Diyarbakir, lost both legs in the explosion.

As the wounded were being carried to hospitals, police used tear gas against people trying to run from the area in panic

The bomber was reported to be a member of ISIS.

* * *

In Turkey, millions of indigenous Kurds are continually terrorized and murdered, while ISIS terrorists can freely travel and use official border crossings to go to Syria and return to Turkey; they are even treated at Turkish hospitals. Emrah Cakan, for instance, a Turkish-born ISIS commander wounded in Syria, got medical treatment at the university hospital in Turkey’s Denizli province in March.

The Denizli governor’s office issued a written statement on 5 March:

“The treatment of Emrah C. at the Denizli hospital was started upon his own application. The procedural acts concerning his injury were conducted by our border city during his entry to our country and they still continue. And his treatment procedures continue as a part of his right to benefit from health services just like all our other citizens have.”

The “compassion” and hospitality that many Turkish institutions have for ISIS members is not even hidden. The silence of the West is mystifying and disappointing.

The U.S. government cooperates with oppressive regimes — including the terrorist regime of Iran, under which Kurds are forced to live — to the detriment of the Kurds, to the detriment other persecuted peoples, and to the detriment of the future of the West.

Many Middle Eastern regimes are ruled by Islamist, often genocidal governments — so there is not much to expect from them in terms of human rights and liberties.

The Kurds need real support, real arms and real recognition. Otherwise, there does not seem to be much difference between the dictatorial, genocidal Middle Eastern regimes and the West, which used to represent democracy and freedom.

Uzay Bulut, born and raised a Muslim, is a Turkish journalist based in Ankara.


[1] The so-called “peace process” was reportedly started in 2012 and through it, Kurds and the Turkish government were to resolve the Kurdish issue through negotiations.)