On November 16, 2014, I gave a keynote address at the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s Restoration Weekend at The Breakers in West Palm Beach, Florida. Below is the text I prepared, which many people who were present asked me to post here as a reference for actual presidential candidates. I departed from this prepared text considerably, as the video will show (I will post it as soon as it is available), but here is nonetheless the general idea:
Thank you. This is a momentous occasion. I have decided to take this opportunity, as I stand before so many patriots and lovers of freedom, to announce my candidacy for the presidency of the United States in 2016.
Now, I know this may sound like a joke, and of course it is a joke. I have no political experience whatsoever. I’ve never held elected office. In fact, I’ve never even run for office. I have no organization, no staff, no money. I am not now and have never been part of the Washington establishment.
In other words, I’m just the man for the job.
There is a serious point I am making in this. The point is that the problem is not Barack Obama. The problem is not the Democrats. Barack Obama and the Democrats are just symptoms of the problem. The problem is an entrenched Washington establishment that keeps failing again and again, and yet keeps on applying the same failed solutions to problems.
Presidents come and Presidents go, but the State Department’s foreign policy establishment is forever. And no matter how many times its remedies fail to heal problems (and usually cause worse ones), it keeps on applying them, without an ounce of self-reflection.
With the presidency of Barack Obama, of course, this has gotten even worse: the lifers at State have a President after their own heart – one whose vision of the world coincides exactly with theirs, and who takes their recommendations without question and fronts for them eagerly, no matter how often and how abysmally they have failed.
What is needed in the Oval Office is an outsider. Not an outsider who has been part of the same establishment, but has just been working at it outside the Beltway. No, what is needed is a genuine outsider, elected with a mandate to do the housecleaning that is needed – a real window-opening and spring cleaning at the State Department, to let in the sunlight and clear out the cobwebs of these failed ideas that are doing nothing less than leading this nation to disaster.
Now, the entrenched establishment is operating in all areas, but I am going to concentrate this morning on foreign policy, because if the foreign policy direction of this nation isn’t radically changed in the near future, we won’t have to worry about domestic policy at all.
Also, foreign policy and domestic policy are of course inextricably intertwined. One of the reasons why the American economy is teetering on the brink today is because we have wasted billions upon billions of dollars in so many ill-conceived foreign policy misadventures.
Chief among these are the millions we are showering upon the Palestinians and investing in the so-called “peace process.”
Obama of course blames Israel for failing to make peace, blaming the failure of peace talks on the so-called “settlements” in the West Bank – which are more accurately known as Jews building homes on Jewish land.
Anyone who still thinks after the Gaza withdrawal that a Palestinian state would bring peace between Israel and the Palestinians hasn’t been paying attention. We were told in 2005 that “occupation” was the problem, and if Israel withdrew from Gaza, the Gazans would turn to peaceful pursuits. Only a few people, including me, warned that Gaza would just become a jihad base for newly virulent attacks against Israel. Events proved us correct.
Now Obama and Kerry want Israel to withdraw from Judea and Samaria, aka the West Bank. They promise us that this withdrawal from this “occupation” is really the one that will finally bring peace and take the wind out of the jihadis’ sails.
Why would the establishment of a Palestinian state now, after the Arab Muslims rejected it in 1948 and the “Palestinians” rejected it in 2000 (and other times) bring peace? How could it, when the goal of Israel’s total destruction, which Hamas has repeatedly and recently reiterated, would remain? Why would another Israeli withdrawal accomplish what earlier Israeli withdrawals — not just from Gaza, but also from Sinai and southern Lebanon — did not?
Israel is not the only victim of our fantasy-based policymaker. Another is the American taxpayer. And this brings us to another false assumption that is again and again used as a basis for policy: the idea that poverty causes terrorism, and that therefore dollars can eradicate terrorism.
Late in 2013, the U.S. and Turkey launched what they called the “Global Fund for Community Engagement and Resilience.” This was intended to “support local communities and organizations to counter extremist ideology and promote tolerance.” It would do this essentially by giving potential jihad terrorists money and jobs. We are devoting at least 200 million dollars to this project.
At the event announcing this project, John Kerry spoke about the importance of “providing more economic opportunities for marginalized youth at risk of recruitment” into jihad groups.
Do you really think that a jihadist in the West Bank determined to murder Israelis, maybe run them down with his car, would give it all up if you gave him a chance to say, “Welcome to McDonalds, may I take your order, please?” Apparently John Kerry does.
This will be $200 million down the drain. Lack of “economic opportunities for marginalized youth” doesn’t fuel Islamic jihad terrorism in the first place. In reality, study after study has shown that jihadists are not poor and bereft of economic opportunities, but generally wealthier and better educated than their peers. In 2009, the Rand Corporation prepared a report for the Secretary of Defense. It said: “Terrorists are not particularly impoverished, uneducated, or afflicted by mental disease….Terrorist leaders actually tend to come from relatively privileged backgrounds.” Terrorists are generally better educated and wealthier than their peers. The Secretary of Defense didn’t listen. No one else did, either. And we keep throwing money at the problem – and by the way, just yesterday, a wealthy physician from Britain fled the UK and joined the Taliban.
Beyond the waste of money, our foreign policy is largely characterized these days by its appalling incoherence.
Take Obama’s stance on Syria. The President has long had Bashar Assad in his sights, but has been stymied by the fact that the only significant opposition to the Assad regime are Islamic jihad groups. Some of Obama’s “vetted moderates” last year drove Christians from their homes and ransacked churches in three towns in Syria.
But now Obama thinks that if he removes Assad, and the jihadis’ raison d’etre will be gone, and the Islamic State will melt away. He has asked his team to devise a strategy to remove Assad, and so – he thinks – take the wind out of the sails of the Islamic State.
Alistair Baskey, spokesman for the National Security Council, said it: “Assad has been the biggest magnet for extremism in Syria, and the President has made clear that Assad has lost all legitimacy to govern.”
The fact that this is even being considered shows that Obama doesn’t take seriously the Islamic State’s proclamations that it is a new caliphate that is going to keep on trying to expand. But who does he think will replace Assad? Does he seriously think he can find someone who can immediately marshal enough support to be able to withstand the Islamic State? If he removes Assad, the Islamic State is the principal force in a position to take advantage of the power vacuum.
So what Obama is saying is that to defeat the Islamic State, we have to let the Islamic State win.
This myopia and willful ignorance is part of the idea that the U.S. should be working to bring “democracy” to the Middle East. For years the U.S. was criticized for supporting dictators in the Middle East, and impeding the aspirations of the people there to choose their own governments.
Barack Obama listened. He adopted the policy that we would no longer support these dictators, but would encourage their opponents and work for peaceful change and free elections. George W. Bush really began this when he removed Saddam Hussein. Now Obama has aided in the fall of Mubarak in Egypt and Gaddafi in Syria, and wants to add Assad to the list.
Like so many of Obama’s policies, it sounds great on paper and is a disaster in real life.
When the U.S. stopped backing these dictators and instead backed popular revolutionaries and the “democratic process,” the result was not stability and the weakening of jihad groups. Instead it was chaos and anarchy in Libya, unrest and instability in Egypt, and the strengthening of jihad groups the world over.
The dictators were bloody and reprehensible; the “democratic process” in all too many Muslim countries has resulted in regimes that are scarcely less bloody and far less stable.
These are just some of the reasons why what we need is a change in the entire political culture, and a sweeping away of the mindsets and false assumptions that have led to these failed policies being repeatedly applied.
So when I get to the Oval Office on January 20, 2017 — where I will never put my feet up on the desk — I will begin sweeping away all that and implementing these policies.
First of all, there will be no more U.S. aid to countries that engage in Sharia oppression.
After a Muslim mob murdered a Christian couple accused of blasphemy, a Pakistani Christian leader called on Obama to make U.S. aid to Pakistan contingent upon repeal of its blasphemy laws. I’d go that one better: no more aid to any country or group that allows for or advocates Sharia oppression of women and non-Muslims, and curtails the freedom of speech in accord with Islam’s prohibition on criticism of Islam.
And as for the Palestinians, they will get nothing at all until they stop the genocidal incitement on Palestinian TV and teach their children that Israel must exist and they must live peacefully with it.
My second executive order will require that government, intelligence and law enforcement agencies tell the truth about the threat we face.
Obama and Kerry, and all the other leaders in the West, have repeatedly insisted that the Islamic State’s “hateful ideology has nothing do with Islam.” This is the official policy of their Administration regarding the jihad threat. In October 2011, John Brennan bowed to demands from Islamic groups with links to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, and ordered the removal of all mention of Islam and jihad from counter-terror training materials, and the firing of all those – including me – who had trained the FBI and the military about what the jihad threat is all about.
This denial and willful ignorance about the fact that Islamic jihadists use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify their actions and make recruits only fosters complacency, and complacency is deadly. Political correctness is also deadly. Thirteen people were killed at Fort Hood because U.S. Army officials were afraid to buck the politically correct culture and act against a Muslim officer who was in touch with Anwar al-Awlaki and had frightened his coworkers with his talk of jihad. Three are dead and hundreds were wounded at the Boston Marathon in 2013 because the FBI disregarded intelligence it received from the Russians about the bombers. The Russians said that they were jihadis just around the time that it became official policy to consider jihad a benign spiritual struggle and nothing more.
No good comes from evading and obfuscating the truth. Reality will always impinge upon fantasy, no matter how cleverly constructed.
We also have to end the exaggerated deference paid toward mosques, and start monitoring them. I will likewise call on Muslim groups to renounce the aspects of Sharia that contradict constitutional freedoms.
The U.S. government should call upon Islamic advocacy groups in this country to renounce, in a sincere and genuine manner, any intention now or in the future to replace the Constitution of the United States with Islamic Sharia. The sincerity of this renunciation should be demonstrated by transparent action to teach in mosques and Islamic schools against this intention, and against the elements of Sharia that contradict American freedoms.
Those that refuse to do this, or are found to be teaching these aspects of Sharia, should be immediately reclassified as political organizations, not religious ones, and made subject to all the accountability to which political groups are ordinarily held. Those that continue after this to teach political Islam should be closed and prosecuted.
Coming to an abrupt end on January 20, 2017 will be all U.S. government cooperation with groups linked to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood.
The United Arab Emirates is cracking down on the Muslim Brotherhood. Yesterday, they designated a number of Brotherhood groups as “terrorist organizations.” Ironically, they included the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Yet 13 years after 9/11, CAIR and other Muslim organizations with proven ties to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood enjoy extraordinary influence in Washington (particularly in the Justice Department), as well as in the mainstream media.
We must ban government officials from having any contact with organizations that the Justice Department had designated unindicted co-conspirators in cases involving jihad terror activity. This ought to be a no-brainer. Would the Roosevelt Justice Department in 1943 have held outreach programs with groups that had demonstrable ties to the Nazis?
As Geert Wilders said yesterday, we also must end immigration from Muslim countries into the United States, except of non-Muslim refugees from persecution.
This is a simple matter of national security. It will be condemned as “racist,” but the harsh reality is that Muslims who are peaceful cannot be distinguished from Islamic jihadists. Can America really afford the national security risk of importing whole Muslim communities from Iraq and Somalia, as is happening now, without even trying to screen out potential jihadists?
We must reconfigure our international alliances.
America’s global alliances are still based on outmoded Cold War models. They need to be reconfigured in light of the global jihad. The old Cold War arrangements simply don’t make any sense today, and leads to this: NATO promising to defend Turkey against the Islamic State that exists today in no small degree because of Turkish help.
We must reconsider and restructure foreign aid programs.
Very simply: No state that oppresses women or non-Muslims in accord with Sharia provisions should get a penny of American aid.
And finally we must begin a Manhattan Project to find new sources of oil and viable new energy sources.
Offshore drilling. Pipelines from Alaska and Canada. Fracking. And concerted research to find alternatives to petroleum. All this and more is needed, so as to choke off the money flow to Islamic states. It is unfortunate but true that our oil money pays for the global jihad.
Ending that situation should have been the first priority after 9/11. It wasn’t. And today, even thirteen years after 9/11, with jihadists worldwide more powerful, brutal and aggressive than ever, one thing is certain: none of these recommendations will be adopted. No politician is willing to pay the political price for advocating them. However, before too long it will become clear to everyone that the price of not advocating them was far, far steeper.
As for my candidacy, the idea is, of course, absurd. But these ideas are not. Of course, establishments don’t become establishments by fiat or luck. The people fronting these bad ideas have huge amounts of money and extraordinary power. The one thing they do not have is the weapon we will use to defeat them: the truth.
And for the truth to prevail, there is one more thing above all that we must fight against.
The U.S. today faces an even stronger enemy than the Islamic jihadists – and stronger than Russia and China as well. That enemy is the entrenched culture of self-hatred that denigrates anything and everything American, and exalts the most inveterate America-haters as heroic underdogs struggling valiantly against a brutal and blind behemoth. That entrenched culture is the foremost obstacle to our defense against jihad terror and Islamic supremacism, in a never-ending tale of obfuscation of a genuine threat and slander of those who call attention to it.
In the aftermath of 9/11, George W. Bush should have called upon the education establishment to reject the revisionism and self-hatred that dominates the textbook view of American history and Western civilization today, and to recognize that Western culture and civilization are seriously threatened today and are worth defending.
Islamic supremacists calculatedly employ the rhetoric of inclusion and multiculturalism to gain for themselves the right of final edit of discussion of Islam in American history textbooks. We must demand a stop to this, and re-learn our own history, and teach it to our children. We need to teach them to revere, not find new ways to deride, those who built the political and legal institutions of this country.
It should also be made a requirement in public schools to teach that there is an ongoing Islamic jihad against the United States, and what a jihad is, and what it means to accomplish, and why it should be resisted.
Since I will never get a chance to deliver an Inaugural Address, I’ll close with this excerpt from what I would have said: “We do not seek war with Muslim nations. If war is brought to us, however, we will defend our nation, our allies, our freedom, and our families. We will not be subjugated. This is a different kind of war from the wars we have fought in the past. It is an ideological war and a war fought by believers in certain ideas rather than by soldiers from particular nations. We will, therefore, fight this new kind of war in a new way. No nation of the world will be a friend to the United States if it holds the beliefs that led to this heinous attack today and allows them to be taught. I invite and call upon the Muslims of the world to choose a society based on the principles of the freedom of speech and the equality of rights before the law. Make no mistake: we will defend those principles. And we will prevail.”