"I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life"

Father God, thank you for the love of the truth you have given me. Please bless me with the wisdom, knowledge and discernment needed to always present the truth in an attitude of grace and love. Use this blog and Northwoods Ministries for your glory. Help us all to read and to study Your Word without preconceived notions, but rather, let scripture interpret scripture in the presence of the Holy Spirit. All praise to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Please note: All my writings and comments appear in bold italics in this colour

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Richard Glossip: Oklahoma Halts Execution 'to Check Drugs' - Insane, Just Insane

US and Oklahoma treatment of Glossip borders on Muslim treatment of dissidents
BBC
From the section US & Canada
Supporters of Glossip celebrate the stay Reuters
A man convicted of ordering his boss's murder has had his execution postponed at the very last minute, due to uncertainty over the lethal drugs.

Richard Glossip looked certain to die by injection in Oklahoma on Wednesday afternoon after the US Supreme Court rejected his appeal.

But Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin has asked for more time to check if the drugs are compliant with state rules.

Pope Francis had urged her to halt the execution.

His archbishop had written to her and urged her to act to commute the sentence, but she said she did not have the authority to do so.

An hour after Glossip was due to be put to death, Ms Fallin announced that she was rescheduling the execution for 6 November.

Circumstantial evidence, or the testimony of one
 person who clearly benefits from such testimony,
should never be justification for execution in 
any sane country

OK, enough is enough! How many times can you bring someone to within minutes of execution only to delay it for a couple weeks so they can do it all over again. Is this not cruel and unusual punishment? Is this really much better than Saudi Arabia's torture of Ali Mohammad al Nimr, or Raif Badawi?

Based entirely on the confession of the admitted murderer, who got to escape the death penalty by implicating someone else, the guilty finding is pathetic. Then to sentence him to death based on that flimsy self-serving 'evidence', is hardly believable. You might expect something like this in Sudan or Iran, but it should never even be possible in a modern country, especially one that considers itself the best country in the world.

I'm not entirely opposed to the death penalty, but it should never be invoked without 'hard' evidence! Circumstantial evidence, or the testimony of one person who clearly benefits from such testimony, should never be justification for execution. It is well known that innocent people are executed in the US with disturbing frequency. It is very disturbing that this doesn't seem to faze anyone in the courts system or the government.

She said prison officials had received potassium acetate for use in the execution, as one of the three drugs used, but state guidelines only list potassium chloride.

Department of Corrections Director Robert Patton said he requested the stay of execution "out of due diligence".

Richard Glossip who is pictured (left) has maintained his innocence for nearly 20 years. (Getty Images)

Glossip has refused plea deals because he says he is innocent

Glossip's boss Barry Van Treese, the owner of the Oklahoma City motel, was beaten to death in 1997.

His colleague Adam Sneed was convicted of the killing but said Glossip had ordered him to carry it out.

Glossip and his family have maintained his innocence for nearly 20 years, saying that Sneed acted alone.

He was first convicted in 1998 but that was overturned in 2001, only for Glossip to be convicted again three years later.

In the most recent appeals, his lawyers said they had an affidavit from another inmate who said Sneed admitted to setting Glossip up.

British billionaire Richard Branson took out a full-page ad in The Oklahoman newspaper on Wednesday that argued Glossip is innocent.

Anti-death penalty activists rally outside the US Supreme Court in a final
attempt to prevent the execution of Oklahoma inmate Richard Glossip
 on 29 September 2015 in Washington Getty Images
Executions have been delayed recently in the US amid problems buying drugs as many firms have refused to sell them.

Oklahoma's drugs procedures have been under scrutiny since a flawed execution in April 2014.

Clayton Lockett struggled for 43 minutes before eventually dying, after an intravenous line was improperly placed.

It's just unfathomable that Americans would not know how to kill a person efficiently.

The Pope had also intervened in the case of a woman in Georgia, but Kelly Gissendaner was put to death on Tuesday.

During the pontiff's visit last week to the US, he urged Congress to abolish the death penalty.

The Spirit of Hitler is Alive and Well in German Town

German mayor blames Israel for Syrian refugee crisis

Critics charge Jena Mayor Albrecht Schröter with making "anti-Semitism respectable."

Albrecht Schröter (ROBERT CONRAD/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)
BERLIN – The Social Democratic mayor of Jena, Albrecht Schröter, on Friday accused Israel of partial responsibility for the Syrian refugee crisis and called on Germany’s foreign minister to “show less restraint” toward the Jewish state.

“The Social Democratic Party must reject Schröter’s absurd statement!” Green Party deputy Volker Beck said.

“Drawing a connection between Israel and the refugees and the civil war in Syria and Iraq is absurd. That only gives meaning to people who believe that Israel is to blame for all the world’s evil,” Beck, who is head of the German-Israel parliamentary group in the Bundestag, said.

Josephine Petzold, from Jusos Jena, an organization for young members of the Social Democratic Party in the eastern German city, took Schröter to task. “Jusos Jena is outraged by the statements of Jena Mayor Albrecht Schröter regarding the German-Israel relationship. Schröter’s naïve assessment turns the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria into the absurd,” she said.

Jusos Jena said in a statement on Friday, “Schröter unwittingly contributes to making anti-Semitism respectable in society.”

"Unwittingly", I wonder?

Jena, Germany
Schröter told the Thüringische Landeszeitung newspaper, in connection to the Syrian refugee crisis: “The US policy of hostility toward Islam bears its fruits.” He called on his party and its Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier “to change the role of Germany in the Middle East conflict. Germany must break with restraint toward Israel as an occupying state.”

Still don't see the connection with Syria!

Nathan Gelbart, a prominent Berlin lawyer and chairman of the German branch of Keren Hayesod-United Israel Appeal, told The Jerusalem Post from Israel, “While respectable mayors deal with municipal policies and traffic lights, Schröter does foreign policy. He is fantasizing, from shifting blame to the US, to an alleged German restraint toward Israel’s occupation policy. Of course, Germany can end Israel’s occupation of the West Bank. It must send German armed forces to relieve Israel’s protection of [Mahmoud] Abbas and prevent the takeover of the West Bank by Hamas." 

The otherwise obscure mayor in Jena, a university town with nearly 110,000 residents, caused controversy in 2012 when he urged a sweeping boycott of Israeli products. He joined the anti-Israel Pax Christi Catholic aid organization in a petition calling for goods from Israel to be boycotted. Kevin Zdiara, the then–deputy representative of the German-Israel Friendship Society in Erfurt, the capital of Thuringia state, where Jena is located, said Schröter’s action recalled the Nazi slogan: “Don’t buy from Jews!” 

The Post sent a press query to Schröter seeking a comment.

In 2012, Schröter said, “I firmly reject the malicious accusation of anti-Semitism against me.”

I wonder if he has reconsidered that position and embraced his anti-Semitic nature? Hitler would be so proud. Had he emerged 75 years ago, he might have been promoted to OIC of Auschwitz.

Jena, Germany

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

David Frum: The Disastrous Legacy of Pierre Trudeau

National Post
Comment
David Frum 

Author and columnist David Frum participated in one of the Royal Ontario Museum’s series of  “history wars” debates, on the resolution, “Pierre Trudeau was a disaster for Canada.” His debating partner was John English, the former Liberal Member of Parliament and the distinguished biographer of Pierre Trudeau. Following is the text of his opening remarks.

I could win this debate with just two words: plaid suits.

Canada elected Pierre Trudeau on the understanding that Trudeau would continue to wear his 1960s skinny lapels and skinny ties. Trudeau reneged, and in 1972 his career was appropriately very nearly terminated.

The only thing that saved him: Trudeau’s opponent wore plaid suits too.

Under the strict rules of debate, my opponent Professor English can win if he proves that Trudeau was something less than a disaster for Canada: a disappointment or even a misfortune perhaps. I hope you will hold him – and Trudeau – and Canada to a higher standard. I hope you will require him to prove that Pierre Trudeau was affirmatively a good thing for Canada, a successful prime minister.

A few years ago, I took my children to visit battlefields of the First World War. All bloomed peaceful and benign in the summer sunshine. You’d never know that a century before, human beings had crouched in terror in these trenches, that here bullets had shattered human heads, doctors had amputated human limbs, bomb blasts had buried human beings alive, and that rats had feasted on human bodies.

When we look back on the past from a distance, everything fades and blurs. It was all so long ago. The dead would be dead by now anyway. Wasn’t the situation really very complicated? We are here and warm and comfortable. No point wasting time in futile regrets. Off we wander to view the next sight.

But if we are to understand history, we have to understand it as it was lived.

Canada today is a very successful country. It has suffered less from the global economic crisis than any other major economy.

So Canadians may be tempted to be philosophical about disasters in their own past. Hasn’t all come out right in the end? Of course you could say the same about the invasions of Ghengis Khan.

I don’t draw any personal comparison between Pierre Trudeau and Ghengis Khan, obviously. But I want to stress: Canada’s achievement overcoming Trudeau’s disastrous legacy should not inure Canadians to how disastrous that legacy was.

Three subsequent important prime ministers – Brian Mulroney, Jean Chretien and Stephen Harper – invested their energies cleaning up the wreckage left by Pierre Trudeau. The work has taken almost 30 years. Finally and at long last, nobody speculates any more about Canada defaulting on its debt, or splitting apart, or being isolated from all its major allies.

Yet through most of the adult lives of most people in this room, people in Canada and outside Canada did worry about those things.

And as you enjoy the peace, stability and comparative prosperity of Canada in the 2010s just consider – this is how Canadians felt in the middle 1960s. Now imagine a political leader coming along and out of ignorance and arrogance despoiling all this success. Not because the leader faced some overwhelming crisis where it was hard to see the right answer. But utterly unnecessarily. Out of a clear blue sky. Like a malicious child on the beach stomping on the sand castle somebody else had worked all morning to build.

That was the political record of Pierre Trudeau.

I want to examine the Trudeau record in 3 dimensions: What Trudeau did to the Canadian economy, what Trudeau did to Canada’s standing in the world, and what Trudeau did to Canadian political stability.

I’ll conclude by offering some thoughts about the personal and intellectual traits that animated Trudeau’s destructive career. And I hope you’ll agree with me at the end that Trudeau deserves at least this much credit: There was nothing small-scale or parochial about him. As a political wrecker, he was truly world class.

***
Pierre Elliot Trudeau
Pierre Trudeau inherited a strong, growing and diversified Canadian economy.

When Trudeau at last left office for good in 1984, Canadians were still feeling the effects of Canada’s worst recession since the Great Depression. Eight years later, the country would tumble into another and even worse recession.

The two recessions 1981-82 and 1992-93 can both fairly be laid at Trudeau’s door.

Pierre Trudeau took office at a moment when commodity prices were rising worldwide. Then as now, rising commodity prices buoyed the Canadian economy. Good policymakers recognize that commodity prices fall as well as rise. A wise government does not make permanent commitments based on temporary revenues. Yet between 1969 and 1979 – through two majority governments and one minority – Trudeau tripled federal spending.

Nemesis followed hubris. Commodity prices dropped. Predictably, Canada tumbled into recession and the worst federal budget deficits in peacetime history.

Trudeau’s Conservative successor Brian Mulroney balanced Canada’s operating budget after 1984. But to squeeze out Trudeau-era inflation, the Bank of Canada had raised real interest rates very high. Mulroney could not keep up with the debt payments. The debt compounded, the deficits grew, the Bank hiked rates again – and Canada toppled into an even worse recession in 1992. By 1993, default on Trudeau’s debt loomed as a real possibility. Trudeau’s next successors, Liberals this time, squeezed even tighter, raising taxes, and leaving Canadians through the 1990s working harder and harder with no real increase in their standard of living.

Do Canadians understand how many of their difficulties of the 1990s originated in the 1970s? They should.

To repay Trudeau’s debt, federal governments reduced transfers to provinces. Provinces restrained spending. And these restraints had real consequences for real people: more months in pain for heart patients, more months of immobility for patients awaiting hip replacements.

If Canada’s health system delivers better results today than 15 years ago, it’s not because it operates more efficiently. Canada’s health system delivers better results because the reduction of Trudeau’s debt burden has freed more funds for healthcare spending. The Canadian socialist Tommy Douglas anticipated the Trudeau disaster when he said that the great enemy of progressive government was unsound finance.

Pierre Trudeau was a spending fool. He was not alone in that, in the 1970s. But here’s where he was alone. No contemporary leader of an advanced industrial economy – not even the German Social Democrat Helmut Schmidt or the British socialist James Callaghan – had so little understanding as Pierre Trudeau of the private market economy. “Little understanding?” I should have said: “active animosity.”

Trudeau believed in a state-led economy, and the longer he lasted in office, the more statist he became. The Foreign Investment Review Agency was succeeded by Petro-Canada. Petro-Canada was succeeded by wage and price controls. Wage and price controls were succeeded by the single worst economic decision of Canada’s 20th century: the National Energy Program.

The NEP tried to fix two different prices of oil, one inside Canada, one outside.  The NEP expropriated foreign oil interests without compensation. The NEP sought to shoulder aside the historic role of the provinces as the owner and manager of natural resources. I’ll return in a moment to the consequences of the NEP for Canada’s political stability. Let’s focus for now on the economic effects.

Most other Western countries redirected themselves toward more fiscal restraint after 1979. Counting on abundant revenues from oil, the Trudeau government kept spending. Other Western governments began to worry more about attracting international investment. Canada repelled investors with arbitrary confiscations. Other Western governments recovered from the stagflation of the 1970s by turning toward freer markets. Under the National Energy Policy, Canada was up-regulating as the US, Britain, and West Germany deregulated. All of these mistakes together contributed to the extreme severity of the 1982 recession. Every one of them was Pierre Trudeau’s fault.

***

Pierre Trudeau had little taste for the alliances and relationships he inherited in 1968. Canada had taken a lead role in creating the institutions of the postwar world, from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to the General Organization for Tariffs and Trade. Those institutions were intended in great part to contain the aggressive totalitarian regimes in the Soviet Union and China. In 1968, Canada remained a considerable military power and an important voice in the councils of the West.

Trudeau repudiated that inheritance. His spending spree did not include the military. He cut air and naval capabilities, pulled troops home from Europe, and embarked on morale-destroying reorganizations of the military services. In 1968, Canada was a serious second-tier non-nuclear military power, like Sweden or Israel. By 1984, Canada had lost its war-fighting capability: a loss made vivid when Canada had to opt out of ground combat operations in the first Gulf War of 1990-91.

Something more was going on here than a left-of-center preference for butter over guns. Throughout his life – now better known than ever thanks to John English – Pierre Trudeau showed remarkable indifference to the struggle against totalitarianism that defined the geopolitics of the 20th century.

Indifference may be too polite a word.

Pierre Trudeau opted not to serve in World War II, although of age and in good health. He traveled to Josef Stalin’s Soviet Union to participate in regime-sponsored propaganda activities. He wrote in praise of Mao’s murderous regime in China. Trudeau lavishly admired Fidel Castro, Julius Nyere, and other Third World dictators. The Soviet dissident Andrei Amalrik scathingly recalled Trudeau’s 1971 prime ministerial visit: Trudeau visited the Siberian city of Norilsk and lamented that Canada had never succeeded in building so large a city so far north – unaware, or unconcerned, that Norilsk had been built by slave labor.

As prime minister, Trudeau to the extent he could tried to reorient Canada away from the great democratic alliance.

It’s telling I think that Trudeau came to the edge of endorsing the communist coup against Solidarity in Poland in December 1981. Hours after the coup, Pierre Trudeau said: “If martial law is a way to avoid civil war and Soviet intervention, then I cannot say it is all bad.” He added “Hopefully the military regime will be able to keep Solidarity from excessive demands.”

Trudeau’s neutralism negated Canada’s former influence. Probably few remember now his farcical “peace initiative” of 1982. Convinced that Ronald Reagan was leading the world toward nuclear war, Trudeau shuttled between Western capitals to appeal for some kind of concession to soothe the Soviets. Results? Unconcealed disdain from the Americans, unconcealed boredom from the Soviets.

Canada had often before played an important go-between role. Not this time. Canada’s most important geopolitical asset is its unique relationship with the US. Trudeau had squandered that asset, and with it, his own influence.

Obviously, Canada and the United States will disagree sometimes. Canadians of different points of view will favor a more or less intimate relationship with the United States. But even the most US-skeptical Canadian nationalist would agree: it’s reckless and foolish to offend the Americans gratuitously. In fact, the more nationalist the Canadian prime minister, and therefore the more likely to conflict with the Americans on large issues – the more carefully you would expect that prime minister to avoid giving offense over inessentials.

Yet Trudeau made it clear to Presidents Nixon and Carter that he personally disliked them, and to President Reagan that he personally despised him. When it came to foreign affairs, there was always a deep strain of frivolity and irresponsibility in Pierre Trudeau.

What Trudeau did take seriously was our third ground of indictment: the stability and unity of the country. And it was here that he did perhaps his greatest harm.

***

Pierre Trudeau had a unique approach to national unity. He ascertained what each of Canada’s regions most dearly wanted – and then he offered them the exact opposite.

Did Quebeckers want to live and work in French in Montreal? Trudeau said no to that – and instead promised that they could live and work in French in Vancouver.

Did Albertans want a less exploitive economic deal within Confederation? Trudeau said no – and instead offered a more exploitive economic deal within Confederation.

Unsurprisingly, Trudeau’s flip-them-the-finger approach to national unity did not yield positive results.

In fact, he nearly blew apart the country – and his own party.

At the beginning of the Trudeau years, separatism was a fringe, radical movement in Quebec. A decade later, Canada faced a referendum on “sovereignty-association.”

In 1968, Trudeau’s Liberals won 25 seats west of Ontario. In 1980, they won 2.

And in the end it was Trudeau’s own policies that destroyed his vision of the country. By dramatically increasing immigration, Trudeau made irrelevant his vision of a bilingual Canada. Lester Pearson famously expressed a hope that he would be Canada’s last unilingual prime minister. It’s very possible that sometime in the 2040s Canada will see its last bilingual prime minister, at least if the second language is French. On current trends, by the 2040s the proportion of French speakers in Canada will be lower than the proportion of Spanish speakers in the United States today.

Defenders of Trudeau’s disastrous governance habitually rally around one great accomplishment: the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Well, Herbert Hoover had some excellent wilderness conservation policies, but we don’t excuse the Great Depression on that account.

Would it really have been impossible to combine the adoption of the Charter with a less destructive economic policy, a less destructive foreign policy, a less destructive national unity policy?

Yet there is a sense in which the Charter of Rights and Freedoms is a very characteristic Trudeau project.

The Charter addressed a deficiency in Canadian constitutionalism: checking the powers of government. It’s possible to imagine a lot of solutions to that problem. The solution contained in the Charter is to give unelected judges the power to void acts of Parliament.

Unelected judges chosen by the prime minister at the prime minister’s sole discretion, unscrutinized by any elected body.

The Charter encapsulates the grand theme of Trudeau’s political life: his lack of respect for the people who returned him to office again and again – his instinctive sympathy for power, the less accountable the better.

One story sums up the man best.

1979. Trudeau had lost that year’s election. His career seemed finished. Reporters awaited in the driveway of 22 Sussex Drive as he stepped into his gull-winged vintage Mercedes to speed away into history.

One shouted: “Mr. Prime Minister – any regrets?”

Pierre Trudeau pondered. Perhaps he had planned, perhaps he remembered something that Richard Nixon had said after losing the California governor’s race in 1962. In an instant Pierre Trudeau revised Nixon’s words to his own very different purpose. “Yes,” he said. “I regret I won’t have you to kick around any more.”

It’s long past time that Canadians in turn resolved: no longer to be posthumously kicked by this bad man and disastrous prime minister.

National Post

Read more from David Frum at FrumForum.com, where this originally appeared.

Top Scientist Resigns from Post - Admits Global Warming is a Scam

There is no Global Warming

I am a long ways from being convinced on this, but I am open-minded enough to listen to the arguments. Are you?

Hal Lewis, Professor Emeritus UCSB
As reported by the Gateway Pundit: Top US scientist Hal Lewis resigned this week from his post at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He admitted global warming climate change was nothing but a scam in his resignation letter.

From the Telegraph (because for some reason the Liberal Media here in the U.S don't like this stuff getting out).

The following is a letter to the American Physical Society released to the public by Professor Emeritus of physics Hal Lewis of the University of California at Santa Barbara

Sent: Friday, 08 October 2010 17:19 Hal Lewis
From: Hal Lewis, University of California, Santa Barbara
To: Curtis G. Callan, Jr., Princeton University, President of the American Physical Society

Dear Curt:
When I first joined the American Physical Society sixty-seven years ago it was much smaller, much gentler, and as yet uncorrupted by the money flood (a threat against which Dwight Eisenhower warned a half-century ago).

Indeed, the choice of physics as a profession was then a guarantor of a life of poverty and abstinence - it was World War II that changed all that. The prospect of worldly gain drove few physicists. As recently as thirty-five years ago, when I chaired the first APS study of a contentious social/scientific issue, The Reactor Safety Study, though there were zealots aplenty on the outside there was no hint of inordinate pressure on us as physicists. We were therefore able to produce what I believe was and is an honest appraisal of the situation at that time. We were further enabled by the presence of an oversight committee consisting of Pief Panofsky, Vicki Weisskopf, and Hans Bethe, all towering physicists beyond reproach. I was proud of what we did in a charged atmosphere. In the end the oversight committee, in its report to the APS President, noted the complete independence in which we did the job, and predicted that the report would be attacked from both sides. What greater tribute could there be?

How different it is now. The giants no longer walk the earth, and the money flood has become the raison d'être of much physics research, the vital sustenance of much more, and it provides the support for untold numbers of professional jobs. For reasons that will soon become clear my former pride at being an APS Fellow all these years has been turned into shame, and I am forced, with no pleasure at all, to offer you my resignation from the Society.

It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford's book organizes the facts very well.) I don't believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.

So what has the APS, as an organization, done in the face of this challenge? It has accepted the corruption as the norm, and gone along with it...

I do feel the need to add one note, and this is conjecture, since it is always risky to discuss other people's motives. This scheming at APS HQ is so bizarre that there cannot be a simple explanation for it. Some have held that the physicists of today are not as smart as they used to be, but I don't think that is an issue. I think it is the money, exactly what Eisenhower warned about a half-century ago. There are indeed trillions of dollars involved, to say nothing of the fame and glory (and frequent trips to exotic islands) that go with being a member of the club.



Forbes Energy & Environment
Updated NASA Data: Global Warming Not Causing Any Polar Ice Retreat

James Taylor ,CONTRIBUTOR

Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

Updated data from NASA satellite instruments reveal the Earth’s polar ice caps have not receded at all since the satellite instruments began measuring the ice caps in 1979. Since the end of 2012, moreover, total polar ice extent has largely remained above the post-1979 average. The updated data contradict one of the most frequently asserted global warming claims – that global warming is causing the polar ice caps to recede.

The timing of the 1979 NASA satellite instrument launch could not have been better for global warming alarmists. The late 1970s marked the end of a 30-year cooling trend. As a result, the polar ice caps were quite likely more extensive than they had been since at least the 1920s. Nevertheless, this abnormally extensive 1979 polar ice extent would appear to be the “normal” baseline when comparing post-1979 polar ice extent.

Updated NASA satellite data show the polar ice caps remained at approximately their 1979 extent until the middle of the last decade. Beginning in 2005, however, polar ice modestly receded for several years. By 2012, polar sea ice had receded by approximately 10 percent from 1979 measurements. (Total polar ice area – factoring in both sea and land ice – had receded by much less than 10 percent, but alarmists focused on the sea ice loss as “proof” of a global warming crisis.)

NASA satellite measurements show the polar ice caps have not retreated at all
A 10-percent decline in polar sea ice is not very remarkable, especially considering the 1979 baseline was abnormally high anyway. Regardless, global warming activists and a compliant news media frequently and vociferously claimed the modest polar ice cap retreat was a sign of impending catastrophe. Al Gore even predicted the Arctic ice cap could completely disappear by 2014.

In late 2012, however, polar ice dramatically rebounded and quickly surpassed the post-1979 average. Ever since, the polar ice caps have been at a greater average extent than the post-1979 mean.

Now, in May 2015, the updated NASA data show polar sea ice is approximately 5 percent above the post-1979 average.

Egypt to Revoke Citizenship of 14,000 Palestinians

Good thing there are no Canadian Liberals in Egypt 
- they would be apoplectic
Egyptian police facing pro-Morsi supporters protest 370.
(photo credit:REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany)
Egyptian security services began investigating Palestinians in order to revoke their Egyptian citizenship that was granted during the reign of former president Mohamed Morsi.

Egyptian authorities plan on revoking the citizenship of 13,757 Palestinians that are under investigation, most of whom are affiliated with Hamas, according to security sources quoted in a report on Thursday in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Youm Al-Sabaa.

Security forces say that Hamas members that became Egyptian citizens have taken part in terrorist attacks.

The prime minister has the ability to revoke the citizenship of Hamas members without a court hearing if they are deemed a threat to public safety, said the report.

This move follows a decision by an Egyptian court on Tuesday to ban Hamas activities in the country. 

The court also ordered the closure of Hamas offices in Egypt, one of the judges overseeing the case told Reuters. The judge stopped short of declaring Hamas a terrorist group, saying the court did not have the jurisdiction to do so.

The military-buttressed authorities now classify Hamas as a significant security risk, accusing it of supporting an Islamist insurgency that has spread quickly since Morsi's fall, allegations the Palestinian group denies.

The Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood later became known as Hamas at the outbreak of the first Intifada in 1987.

Reuters contributed to this report.

What is Islam...in the UK? Buckingham Palace a Mosque?

This report might be easy to dismiss if it came from some right-wing lunatic site, but it came from CNN! 

In the report, British Muslims announce that they want to turn Buckingham Palace into a mosque, and the Queen can either convert to Islam or leave the country.



This is the first of two videos from the London suburb of Luton. Reporter visits her home for the first time in years and is shocked to see what has happened to it.


Bury Park, Luton Muslims create havoc and claim they rule England.



Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Extreme Volatility of Muslims Poses Great Danger to West

Wikipedia

On 15 September 2012, a protest against an anti-Islam film Innocence of Muslims was held in Sydney, New South Wales. While the protest started peacefully, violent confrontations between police and protesters began when protesters reached the United States Consulate General. In resulting clashes, six police officers and 19 protesters were injured. The violence was condemned by Australian political leaders, including Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Police arrested nine protesters in connection with the violence.

Innocence of Muslims was a 14 minute trailer for a film that was probably never made. It was produced by an Egyptian Coptic Christian living near L.A. The clip sparked riots all over the world that left more than 50 dead, and fatwas issued for the deaths of those who participated in the film. It was later revealed that the actors were dubbed with the anti-Islamic lines after the trailer was otherwise complete.


The point I'm trying to make is that the video had nothing to do with Australia, and, these were ordinary Muslims who were instantly raised to violence at the thought of someone saying something unbecoming of Mohammed. As I have been warning for some time, Muslims are very volatile and easily excited, and putting large numbers of them in western countries is a recipe for disaster. It's just a matter of time.


The protest started at about midday when approximately 100 people gathered at the Sydney Town Hall before marching along George Street to Martin Place where the US Consulate is located. Conflict between the protesters and the police started when the former tried to enter the US Consulate. The police used capsicum spray to push the protesters back from the consulate. According to one protester this aggravated the crowd, as many had brought their children.

The crowd then moved to Hyde Park, where around 300 people had gathered. Further clashes erupted as police used capsicum spray on protesters who at times threw bottles at police. Protesters chanted "Down, down USA" and carried Islamist flags and signs saying, "Behead all those who insult the prophet", "Our dead are in paradise, your dead are in hell", "Shariah will dominate the world", and "Obama Obama, we love Osama" and threw bottles and objects retrieved from construction sites at police officers. The police responded by spraying capsicum spray into the crowd. Six police officers were injured of which two were hospitalized.

As the crowd started to leave Hyde Park near St James, Public Order and Riot Squad officers equipped with batons and riot shields had already been stationed at the park exit. Protestors continued to throw stones, sticks and bottles at the police. Riot and mounted police pursued protesters down William Street towards Kings Cross. The already splintered crowd then broke up further, running through the back streets of Darlinghurst with police chasing after them.

Police blocked several CBD streets, including the intersection of Martin Place and Castlereagh Street, parts of George Street and Market Street while protestors attempted to move through the city.

Arrests and investigation
Nine men were arrested. Police continued to investigate the event using photographs published by news networks to identify people who attended the protest, stating that not all those caught on camera were guilty of offences, but might be able to help identify those who had acted violently. The Counter Terrorism Squad reported that they had identified a number of men known to have criminal convictions, although not necessarily linked to terrorist groups. Mohammed Issai Issaka was convicted for riot and assaulting police, and after losing an appeal, was jailed in April 2014. Others received suspended sentences for affray and resisting arrest, fines or good behaviour bonds for offenses ranging from assault, damaging property, to offensive language.

Media coverage
The Australian reported that several of the protestors were carrying the black flags of an organisation described as al-Qa'ida sympathisers (ISIS?). An unnamed Muslim leader was quoted in the paper as saying that the protest had been hijacked by a group known as "Sixth Pillar", the name being a reference to the "Five Pillars of Islam" with jihad being claimed by some to be the "sixth pillar of Islam". The group may be linked to the controversial Sydney Sheik Feiz Mohammed.

Reactions
Julia Gillard
The Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, condemned the violence saying, "Violent protest is never acceptable - not today, not ever." The Premier of New South Wales, Barry O'Farrell, condemned the violence and promised to hold the perpetrators accountable, and that he was "delighted there has been such a strong statement by Islamic leaders and scholars". The Federal Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, also condemned the use of violence and called on the perpetrators to be prosecuted.

Leaders of 25 Muslim organisations met on the Monday night and said that the protests over the film were "unacceptable and un-Islamic", and that they did not support even peaceful protest. The Board of Imams Victoria met on 17 September to discuss strategies to prevent riots in Melbourne. The President of the Australian National Imams Council emphasised the importance of correct education of the younger generation. The plan of the Board of Imams Victoria was that the same message of peace should be preached across Australia on Friday 21 September with parents being urged to stay at home with their children after Friday prayers. Sheik Azeim urged all young Muslims in Australia to remember that they are Australians first, and that facilities such as schools, hospitals and the social security organisation Centrelink did not question whether they were Muslim.

Farkhunda
There are many stories one can relate about the volatility of Muslims because of a percieved insult to Mohammed, or the rumour of someone burning the Quran. Muslim mobs completely lose control and are capable of the most horrific behaviour. Read the story of Farkhunda, the completely innocent young woman who was beaten, stoned, dragged by a car and burnt to ashes because someone said she had burnt a Quran, which was not true. The mob went hysterical! It's that easy! 

Farkhunda's ashes
The world cannot run in absolute silence with regard to Mohammed or Islam. The truth must be told! The Quran says that Allah fights against Jesus Christ (Quran 9:30)! There is only one who fights against Jesus and that is Satan, and Mohammed is his messenger.

Islam's Significant Contribution to America

Historian David Barton did in an interview with Glenn Beck in response to President Obama's claims that Muslims have made a significant contribution to America.

Upon hearing the president’s claims, Barton set out to find any contributions Muslims made in America’s history — the first of which took place in 1856, 80 years after the founding, when Secretary of War Jefferson Davis hired a Muslim to help train camels in Arizona.

Even if the plan to combat Native Americans from camel back hadn’t fallen apart, this contribution could hardly be classified as significant.

However, Barton did discover an area in which Muslims had a considerable influence on America, though it comes in the form of an enemy instead of ally.

Franklin, Jefferson, Adams
After the United States won its independence from England in 1776,  American vessels were no longer protected overseas by Britain and France. This opened up U.S. ships to countless raids by Muslims pirates hailing from the Barbary Coast.

Attacks continued even after the United States agreed to pay for safe passage, forcing America to send founding fathers Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams as representatives to negotiate a deal. There they discovered the real reason the Muslim pirates plundered their ships.

Motivated by more than treasure, power or greed, these pirates were duty-bound by Islamic law to attack non-Mulsims.

Each of the American representatives wrote of their experience, conveying harsh realities of Islam that are still apparent today.

“The ambassador answered us that (the right to attack shipping) was founded on the Laws of the Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have answered their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners, and that every Mussulman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise,” Jefferson wrote to Secretary of State John Jay, calling peace an impossibility.

Franklin echoed Jefferson’s sentiments saying, “Nor can the Plundering of Infidels be in that sacred Book (the Quran) forbidden, since it is well known from it, that God has given the World, and all that it contains, to his faithful Mussulmen, who are to enjoy it of Right as fast as they conquer it.”

Lastly, Adams reported back to Jay that the Muslim Prophet Muhammad was a “military fanatic” who “denies that laws were made for him; he arrogates everything by force of arms.”

It seems little has changed in Islam in the past 240 years.

By the time Jefferson was voted into office, the Muslims pirates were charging even more money for passage and the attacks still continued. Jefferson took swift action and launched the U.S. Navy against the Barbary pirates, chasing them all the way to Tripoli and giving birth to the United States Marine Corps (H/T The Federalist Papers Project).

Obama may not be far off in saying Muslims played a role in shaping America; he’s just a little fuzzy on the details.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Pharmaceutical Co. to Sue Canada for Right to Charge Obscene Prices

U.S. drug company sues Canada for trying to 
lower cost of $700K-a-year drug

Alexion Pharmaceuticals argues federal government cannot
limit price of blood disease medication
CBC News

A U.S. drug company is taking the Canadian government to court for its attempt to lower the price of what has been called the world's most expensive drug.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals has filed a motion in Federal Court, arguing that Canada's drug price watchdog has no authority to force the company to lower its price for Soliris.

'This is the single greatest threat to pricing of drugs in Canada ever.'
- Amir Attaran, health law expert

The company says in the court documents that the price of Soliris has not changed since it went on the market about six years ago and that the price difference between the two countries reflects the difference in exchange rates between the U.S. and Canada.

The medication is approved to treat two rare blood diseases that affect about one in every one million people. A 12-month treatment costs about $700,000 in Canada, while in the U.S. it costs about $669,000.

Both diseases — paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH) and atypical haemolytic uremic syndrome (AHUS) — prompt the immune system to kill red blood cells, causing anemia, blood clots, organ failure and, eventually, death.

While Soliris is not a cure, it can stop the assault on the body's tissues and organs. Since patients typically need to take the medication indefinitely, it can cost tens of millions of dollars over a lifetime.

Due to the high cost, some patients in Canada can't get the drug. Only some provinces will cover the cost of treatment and there are different criteria to qualify for coverage in various jurisdictions.

Soliris is the only drug Alexion produces, but it's earned the firm revenues of more than $6 billion over eight years.

No wonder they're whining, less than a billion dollars a year? The super-villain of pharmaceuticals companies, Alexion could care less if people suffer horribly and die from inability to afford their drug - a drug that cost less than 1% of the price to make. Nor could they care less if they bankrupt Canada's medical system causing millions to suffer needlessly and die.

When does Alexion's patent on Soliris run out? I think the court should cancel Alexion's patent for abusive pricing that causes unnecessary suffering and death to Canadians. Pharmaceutical companies cannot be allowed to price drugs on a supply and demand basis.

If this suit is successful, every pharmaceutical company in the world will be increasing the prices on patented drugs and bleeding medical systems dry. The courts need to protect Canadians from these heartless, greedy, sickening excuses for humanity.

Canada's Patented Medicine Prices Review Board is challenging the cost of the drug, saying the price could be considered excessive and that it costs more in Canada than anywhere elsewhere in the world.

The review board launched hearings in June to force Alexion to lower its price. That could force the company to reimburse Ottawa for past overpayments and provinces that have covered the drug costs could apply to recoup some of that money.

Alexion fired back on Sept. 11 by filing a motion in Federal Court, asking for the review board to be prohibited from going ahead with its hearing — or from making any order that would affect the price of Soliris.

'Greatest threat' to drug pricing

A University of Ottawa professor who specializes in health law said he was shocked that Alexion would challenge Canada's authority to regulate drug prices. If Alexion's case is successful, it could end Ottawa's ability to control the cost of patented drugs, Amir Attaran told CBC News.

"This is the single greatest threat to pricing of drugs in Canada ever," he said Thursday.

The company has not yet returned calls for comment.


Russian Marines Join Hezbollah in First Syrian Battle – a Danger Signal for US, Israel


Before dawn on Thursday, Sept. 24, Russian marines went into battle for the first time since their deployment to Syria, DEBKAfile's military and intelligence sources reveal. Russian Marine Brigade 810 fought with Syrian army and Hezbollah special forces in an attack on ISIS forces at the Kweiris airbase, east of Aleppo.

This operation runs contrary to the assurances of President Vladimir Putin to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sept. 21 - just three days ago - that Russian forces in Syria were only there to defend Russian interests and would not engaged in combat with the Syrian army, Hezbollah or Iranian troops.

This has got to be rather upsetting to PM Netanyahu; having Russia align with an enemy of Israel has frightening potential. Then there is the fact that Putin flat-out lied to him. But did he actually expect that Putin would tell the truth. I'm pretty sure Netanyahu knows that there are two demographics you can count on to lie incessantly - militant Muslims and Mafia.

The ISIS force defending the air base is dominated by Chechen fighters under the command of Abu Omar al-Shishani, who is considered one of the terrorist organization's leading commanders in the last two years. The 27-year-old al-Shishani hails from the Chechen enclave of Pankisi in Georgia, like many others who joined ISIS from 2012.

However, targeting Chechen fighters was not the only reason for the order given by Russian command in Syria to attack the air base.  In DEBKA Weekly 678 of September 11, it was predicted that the first Russian mission in Syria would be to break the Syrian rebel siege on Aleppo, Syria's second-largest city.

As their first step, the Russians would have to prevent the cutoff of highway 5, running from Aleppo to Damascus, and keep it open for Syrian army reinforcements and military equipment to the city.

The offensive to regain Kweires airbase that fell to ISIS in mid-June is the first step in the implementation of Russia's operational plan for the Aleppo area.


Meanwhile, little substance was to be found in the reports appearing, mainly in the United States, suggesting that Putin, disappointed by the Obama administration's unwillingness to send the US Air Force to collaborate with Russia in the fight against ISIS, would try to talk Obama round if and when they meet on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly on September 28.

According to DEBKAfile's sources, these reports were spread to cover up the serious crisis in the US war against ISIS.

While Russia poured troops and advanced hardware into Syria, establishing bases and launching offensive action, the US anti-Islamic State effort suffered a heavy blow with the decision of Obama's ISIS war czar, Gen. John Allen, to step down in early November.

Lt. Gen. John Allen
Sources close to the general were quoted as referring to his frustration "with the White House micromanagement of the war and its failure to provide adequate resources."'

The fact that the Russian forces launched their attack on ISIS shortly after the announcement of Allen's upcoming resignation shows that Putin is not waiting for US cooperation in the war on the Islamist terrorists.    That said, DEBKAfile's military sources point out that the most ominous aspect for the US and Israel of the Russian attack on the Syrian airbase is that Russian marines were combined with Syrian and Hezbollah special forces.

For the first time in 41 years, since the 1974 war of attrition against the IDF on the Golan, Russian troops are fighting alongside Syrian forces. It is also the first time that a world power like Russia is willing to go into battle with an acknowledged terrorist group, such as Hezbollah.

Our sources point out that the joint attack was completely counter to the tone and the content of the comments exchanged by Putin and Netanyahu at their summit.

French Opposition Leader to go on Trial for Telling the Truth

Politics is a dirty business
French far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen  François Monier, AFP
Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s far-right National Front (FN) party, will go on trial in October for comparing Muslim prayers in the street to the Nazi occupation, party officials and the Lyon prosecutor’s office said on Tuesday.

Le Pen made the inflammatory comments in 2010 while campaigning to take over the FN’s leadership from her father, party founder Jean-Marie Le Pen.

“I’m sorry, but for those who really like to talk about World War II, if we’re talking about an occupation, we could talk about the [street prayers], because that is clearly an occupation of territory,” she told an FN rally in the eastern city of Lyon.

“It is an occupation of sections of the territory, of neighborhoods in which religious law applies – it is an occupation. There are no tanks, there are no soldiers, but it is an occupation nevertheless, and it weighs on people,” she added.

Muslims shut down Paris streets for prayers - because they can
An initial investigation was launched into Le Pen’s comments but it was closed in 2011. The case was reopened in 2012 following a legal complaint by a rights group.

Le Pen was put under formal investigation in July 2014 after her immunity as a member of the European Parliament was lifted following a vote requested by French authorities.

She will face trial on October 20 on charges of “inciting discrimination over people’s religious beliefs”, the Lyon prosecutor’s office said.

I can't see this trial lasting more than an hour. It's not religious beliefs she complained about, it was the illegal behaviour of shutting down some streets in Paris to any kind of movement, even from the residents of the street. If a judge doesn't throw this out immediately, then there is no justice in France.

Le Pen described the trial as a “scandal”.

“It is a scandal that a political leader can be sued for expressing her beliefs,” she told Reuters. “Those who denounce the illegal behaviour of fundamentalists are more likely to be sued than the fundamentalists who behave illegally.”

Le Pen, who polls say is likely to win a regional election in northern France in December, has widened the FN’s appeal since she took its helm in 2011 by expelling extremists and cracking down on anti-Semitism (including her own father).

But it is unclear whether the trial, which will take place less than two months before the election in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region, could harm Le Pen’s chances of winning.

The second reason a judge should throw this case out of court is the clear political intrigue involved in it. From forcing the lifting of her parliamentary immunity to the timing of the trial - it's politics at its lowest.

Her opinion poll ratings have not suffered from a row with her father Jean-Marie, whom she expelled from the party in August for making comments dismissive of the Holocaust.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, REUTERS)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Pastor Starting His 3rd Year in Iranian Jail Needs Prayer

Light in the darkness: Pastor Saeed is suffering in an Iranian prison, but he’s also leading inmates to Christ. Here’s the latest. (My conversation with his wife, Naghmeh Abedini)

by joelcrosenberg

Pastor Saeed (Washington, D.C.) -- “Remember the prisoners as if chained with them—those who are mistreated—since you yourselves are in the body also.” Hebrews 13:3 (NKJV)

On Tuesday evening, I had the opportunity to talk by phone with Mrs. Naghmeh Abedini. She is the wife of Pastor Saeed Abedini, who has been in prison in Iran for converting to Christianity, preaching the Gospel, and helping the underground house church network inside Iran.

This Saturday will mark the third year since Pastor Saeed was arrested in Iran and sentenced to death. A prayer vigil for his protection and release will be held in churches all over the world this weekend. I ask you and your family and church to commit this weekend to praying for this dear brother in Christ and his precious family. I have been invited to speak that day at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C. and will address Pastor Saeed's remarkable story.

Saeed's story
Saeed was born in Iran in 1980 and raised as a Shia Muslim. In his teens, he was recruited by a Radical Muslim group to become a suicide bomber and thus a martyr for the cause of jihad. But in 2000, God had mercy on Saeed and opened his eyes to the truth of the Gospel. At the age of 20, he renounced Islam and become follower and disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.

As he grew in his faith, Saeed became active in sharing the Gospel with other Iranians, leading them to Christ, discipling them, and setting up and supporting a network of underground churches throughout Iran. Fox News has reported that "his home church movement had about 100 churches in 30 Iranian cities with more than 2,000 members."

In time, Saeed had the opportunity to travel to the United States. There, he met and married Nagmeh, became a dual U.S.-Iranian citizen, and the couple had two children, Rebekka and Jacob. As a family, they were committed to reaching the Iranian people with the love of Christ. Several times, Saeed traveled to Iran to encourage the underground church and care for the poor and needy. But in 2012, he was arrested by the Iranian government, beaten, and sentenced to death under Sharia law for converting to Islam -- thus becoming an apostate, in the eyes of Islam -- and leading others to faith in Christ.

"It [the underground church movement] was just growing so fast," Nagmeh told Fox News. "They [Iran's government] see the underground churches as a threat and they see Christianity as a tool from the West to undermine them. They think if the country becomes more Christian, they are no longer under Islamic authority. That's why it's a threat."

It has a been a long, painful, brutal journey for this family. They have suffered immensely because they have been so bold and so brave for the sake of the Gospel. Saeed has been attacked and severely beaten by fellow inmates. This week, he was tasered by prison officials. Yet through it all, God has shown great mercy, and even performed miracles.

Unstoppable Evangelist
"Saeed has shared the Gospel with many of the prisoners he is with," Nagmeh told me. "Some of them are political prisoners, former high ranking officials in the government. Others are hardened criminals. But many of them have given their lives to Christ -- dozens of them."

Prison officials became so infuriated with Saeed for leading prisoners to Christ that they moved him to a different cell. But then more prisoners came to Christ. So they moved him to a different prison. But still more prisoners accepted Christ. Then they put him in a cell with the worst murderers on death row and warned Saeed not to speak of Christ or the inmates would kill him. But Saeed prayed that God would protect him and that God would soften the hearts of these murderers.

That's when he saw more miracles. Several of the inmates in his cell had dreams and visions of the Lord Jesus Christ appearing to them personally. They became followers of Christ. Now they are protecting Saeed and he is able to encourage them in their faith.

A senior U.S. government official told Naghmeh that the Iranian government has told the U.S. that they are angry that Muslim prisoners are converting to Christ.

Saeed believes that one of the reasons the Lord has put him in prison is to reach Iranians with the Gospel. Otherwise, they would have had absolutely no way to hear the good news that God loves us and wants to forgive us and give us eternal life through faith in Christ.

Naghmeh -- who lives in Boise, Idaho, and attends a Calvary Chapel congregation there -- believes that as well. She knows God is using her husband in a powerful way, amidst the persecution and suffering. And she told me she trusts the Lord, and that He is giving grace beyond measure to sustain them all. Still, she and her children still desperately want Saeed home. They miss him terribly, and he needs medical care for the wounds he has suffered in prison that the Iranian government refuses to provide.

So she continues to mobilize people to pray for her husband and for all persecuted Christians in Iran. She is trying to educate the nation and the world as to the plight of her husband and to what the Iranian government is doing. She is also trying to persuade world leaders to take up the cause of her husband and press Tehran for his release. She has met with President Obama and other U.S. leaders. Today, she has been invited to attend the Pope's address to a Joint Session of Congress and is praying the Lord will give her an audience with the Pope. Next week, she will be in New York for the opening of the U.N. General Assembly. She is praying and fasting the Lord will open the door for her to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and to be able to personally request his release.

"If the Iranian government doesn't want him sharing the Gospel with the prisoners, there is a simple solution," she told me. "They can release him, send him back to America, and tell him to never come back again."

Please join me in praying daily for this family, and please share this story with others and get them to pray as well.

As the Lord Jesus Christ told his disciples, "I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." (Matthew 5:44)

----------------------

Here's the latest news on Pastor Saeed.....

By Tiffany Barrans, ACLJ

After a short family visitation today at Rajaei Shahr prison in Iran, Naghmeh Abedini, the wife of American Pastor Saeed Abedini, heard disturbing news about possible new charges being brought against Pastor Saeed.  Over the years, the Iranian government continually promised that Pastor Saeed’s eight-year-prison sentence could be arbitrarily extended, and yesterday they took their first steps to fulfill that promise.

Yesterday in Iran, Iranian intelligence officers summoned Pastor Saeed for an intense round of interrogation. Pastor Saeed reported to his family that the interrogators were abusive both verbally and physically.  During the course of interrogation, the officers repeatedly used a taser gun on Pastor Saeed. This new assault  is concerning as Pastor Saeed is still being denied needed medical care for injuries sustained as a result of beatings in the past.

The interrogators threatened that Pastor Saeed will face new criminal charges.  They claimed Pastor Saeed has connections with anti-government groups and has made statements and taken actions against the government of Iran.  Pastor Saeed denied all of these allegations, and once again asserted that he is apolitical and that he has never threatened the security of, made any statements against, or taken any action against the Government of Iran.

This troubling development comes as Iranian President Rouhani prepares to address the United Nations General Assembly in New York.  It also coincides with new efforts by the ACLJ in the international arena as a growing number of global leaders urge Iran to release Pastor Saeed.

Pastor Saeed has repeatedly expressed to the Iranian Government, both during his interrogations and at trial, that he poses no threat to the Government and was only present in Iran to assist Iran’s most vulnerable children by building a government-approved orphanage. Still, the Iranian Government continues to look for ways to keep this innocent U.S. citizen  imprisoned.

In reaction to this news Naghmeh Abedini had this to say:

When will this nightmare end? Saeed is not a criminal.  Being a Christian and motivated by Christian values to help the poorest and most needy children in Iran should be seen as good for the Iranian society.  Hearing that yet again the hardliners in Iran are trying to fabricate evidence against my husband and that he was abused and tasered is almost too much to bear.

It is time for governments all over the world shift their focus to the injustices of the Iranian Government and call on the Government of Iran to free my husband.  It is time for businesses seeking to do business in Iran to look beyond their bottom dollar and see the instability of a government known to imprison innocent men and women who have exercised their fundamental freedoms.  Whether we operate in the field of business, government, or simply are members of human society, we must expect and demand more of our leaders.

I pray that as President Rouhani plans his travel to the United States next week, he will hear relentless voices crying out for Saeed’s freedom.

Saturday marks the third year of Pastor Saeed’s imprisonment. And there will be hundreds of prayer vigils that day around the globe – prayers for Pastor Saeed and his family.

The ACLJ joins Naghmeh in calling for world leaders to do more to free Pastor Saeed.  We have heard from more than 265,000 people urging  U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to intervene directly with the Iranian Government on Pastor Saeed’s behalf. We renew that call today.

Please pray for Saeed, and if you can, ask your church to pray for him this weekend.

Islamic Jihad Group Issues International Hit List of Bloggers, Activists and Writers

BY ROBERT SPENCER
Jihad Watch
Ansarullah Bangla Team
Bangladesh:
How barbaric. In the United States we don’t murder writers for offending Muslims. Instead, we excoriate them as “racist,” “bigoted” “Islamophobes,” accuse them of all manner of offenses, no matter how wild the charge, and ostracize them in the name of “dialogue,” “multiculturalism,” “public safety” or whatever works. You see, we are much more civilized.

“Militant group publishes global hitlist of bloggers, activists and writers,”
by Jason Burke, Guardian,

An Islamic militant group in Bangladesh has issued a hitlist of secular bloggers, writers and activists around the world, saying they will be killed if its demands are not met.

The list will raise fears that Islamic militant violence within the unstable south Asian country could take on an international dimension.

The targets in the list include nine bloggers based in the UK, seven in Germany, two in the US, one in Canada and one in Sweden. Some are Bangladeshi citizens living overseas. Others are dual nationals or citizens of the western nations.

The list was issued in a statement on the internet by the Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT), a group that has been blamed for a series of murders of bloggers and activists in Bangladesh over the last 18 months. All those killed have been prominent critics of extremist religious doctrines, especially in Islam.

The acting leader of the ABT and two close associates were arrested earlier this month in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, on suspicion of involvement in the murder of a secular blogger earlier this year….

“Our weapon is [the] pen, and we can use it without hurting anybody. We just want to make people conscious about their rights. So that nobody can use them to fulfill bad intentions,” said Ananya Azad, a Bangladeshi blogger who has been forced into exile in Europe and is on the list.

There has been no previous indication that the ABT was targeting bloggers overseas and the list will worry security authorities in Europe and the US….

It is unclear if the ABT has the capability to carry out their threats, but its call for action may prompt individuals to mount “lone wolf” attacks.

Police have charged an ABT organiser and four supporters with the murder of a 27-year-old blogger, Washiqur Rahman, in Dhaka in March.

Rahman’s death came just weeks after a Bangladesh-born American atheist blogger was murdered in Dhaka by machete-wielding attackers.

The murder in February of Bangladeshi-born US citizen Avijit Roy, a science writer and blog moderator, prompted outrage around the world. His US-based widow is among those named on the new list the group appear to have issued.

Officials suspect the ABT is close to the Ansar ul-Islam organisation, which is part of al-Qaida in south Asiaand launched by the extremist organisation about a year ago.

The statement featured a logo comprising a black flag carrying the seal of the prophet Muhammad, often favoured by extremist groups, and the phrase: “We do not forget, we do not forgive” in English.

Al-Qaida has publicly praised violent operations by the ABT and has hailed activists charged with the murder of bloggers as “lions of the international community”.

The new list is accompanied by an incoherent demand to strip bloggers of their citizenship. It appears to be addressed to the government of Bangladesh’s prime minister Sheikh Hasina, though many of those on the hitlist have dual nationality or are citizens of Britain, the US or European nations.

“Cancel the Bangladeshi citizenship of enemies of Islam and [Muslim religious] education, atheists, apostates, unbelievers, anti-Islamic … bloggers, agents of India … otherwise they will be killed wherever they can be found in the Almighty’s world,” said the statement.

The origin of the list is unclear, and some have doubted it is an official statement from the ABT in Bangladesh, but instead compiled or published from the UK or elsewhere in the west….

Authorities in Dhaka have been previously criticised for requesting local bloggers and activists to avoid provocative statements on sensitive religious issues.

Human Rights Watch, the international campaigning group, last month called for the government “to recall that its duty is to uphold the constitution and protect people’s lives, as well as their religious freedom”.

“It’s shocking that Bangladesh authorities not only failed to protect the bloggers despite complaints to the police about threats against them, but instead are proposing self-censorship,” said the spokesperson….

Why is that so shocking? That’s exactly what happened to Pamela Geller and me in the United States to Pamela Geller after jihadis attacked our free speech event in Garland, Texas last May: even people supposedly on the Right, such as Bill O’Reilly, Laura Ingraham, and presidential candidate Donald Trump recommended we practice self-censorship in the face of violent intimidation, rather than defending the freedom of speech.

Those on the list say they are aware of the dangers of their activism. “I can’t give you assurance that I can’t be hurt here also. Fundamentalists have threatened that they will come and kill me,” said blogger Azad.

“I can’t say that I am fully safe, as the fundamentalists know where I am residing. I can’t say what will happen in future, but I can give you this assurance that I will write until the end of my life.”

There is a very high probability that both Spencer and Geller are on that list. It is almost certain that I am not as there is only one in Canada on the list. But it would be nice to know who is on the list so that I could remove the 'almost'.

At any rate, blogging is serious business these days especially if you write the truth about Islam. They can handle just about anything but the truth. Bloggers are imprisoned in many Muslim countries, some under threat of death and/or flogging. Islam cannot stand up to criticism, that's why they have to eliminate it. Muslims are not interested in truth, they are only interested in Islam.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Amazing Story of Courage, Resistance, Rescue and Survival from the Nazis

The Bielski Partisans
Holocaust Memorial Museum

JEWISH PARTISAN ACTIVITY IN EASTERN EUROPE, 1942-1944
Group portrait of former Bielski partisans from Nowogrodek taken in the
Foehrenwald displaced persons camp. Germany, April 3, 1948.
— US Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Jack Kagan
Operating in Western Belorussia (Belarus) between 1942 and 1944, the Bielski partisan group was one of the most significant Jewish resistance efforts against Nazi Germany during World War II.

While its members did fight against the Germans and their collaborators, the Bielski group leaders emphasized providing a safe haven for Jews, particularly women, children, and elderly persons who managed to flee into the forests. Under the protection of the Bielski group, more than 1,200 Jews survived the war, one of the most successful rescue efforts during the Holocaust.

Following the German invasion of the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941, the Germans occupied Western Belorussia (before 1939 Western Belorussia had been a part of Poland; after Germany invaded Poland in 1939 it was annexed to the Soviet Union by previous agreement with Germany). There, German authorities killed tens of thousands of Jews in Nowogrodek (Novogrudok) District (including the cities of Lida and Nowogrodek) between July 1941 and the end of spring 1942, and confined those they did not shoot to ghettos throughout the District. When German SS and police units liquidated these ghettos in 1942-1943, they killed most of the remaining inhabitants.

Tuvia Bielski
After the Germans killed their parents and two brothers in the Nowogrodek ghetto in December 1941, three surviving brothers of the Bielski family—Tuvia (1906–1987), Asael (1908–1945), and Zus (1910–1995)—established a partisan group. Initially, the Bielski brothers attempted only to save their own lives and those of their family members. They fled to the nearby Zabielovo and Perelaz forests, where they formed the nucleus of a partisan detachment consisting at first of about 30 family members and friends.

The family members chose former Zionist activist Tuvia Bielski, a Polish Army veteran and a charismatic leader, to command the group. His brother Asael became his deputy, while Zus was placed in charge of reconnaissance. A fourth and much younger brother, Aharon (1927- ) was part of the group as well.

The Bielskis had been a Jewish farming family in the nearby village of Stankiewicze, and the brothers knew the region well. Their familiarity with its geography, customs, and people helped them elude the German authorities and their Belorussian auxiliaries. With the help of non-Jewish Belorussian friends, they were able to acquire guns. The Bielski partisans later supplemented these arms with captured German weapons, Soviet weapons, and equipment supplied by Soviet partisans.

Asael Bielski
Tuvia Bielski saw his principal mission as saving the lives of his fellow Jews. The Bielskis encouraged Jews in nearby Lida, Nowogrodek, Minsk, Iwie, Mir, Baranowicze, and other ghettos to escape and join them in the forest. Bielski frequently sent guides into the ghettos to escort people to the forest. In late 1942, a special mission saved over a hundred Jews from the Iwie ghetto just as the Germans planned to liquidate it. Bielski scouts constantly searched the roads for Jewish escapees in need of protection.

Many Jews hiding in the forests in smaller family groups joined the Bielski group; Jewish partisans serving in Soviet partisan organizations also fell in with the Bielskis in an attempt to escape antisemitism in their units. The stream of Jewish survivors increased the size of the Bielski group to more than 300 people by the end of 1942.

Alexander Bielski
Until the summer of 1943, the group led a nomadic existence in the forest. In August 1943, however, the Germans began a massive manhunt directed against Russian, Polish, and Jewish partisans in the region. They deployed more than 20,000 military personnel and SS and police officials. Moreover, they offered a reward of 100,000 Reichmarks for information leading to Tuvia Bielski’s capture. The Bielski group, which had increased to approximately 700 Jews, was especially vulnerable to discovery by the German patrols. The group feared in part that the local peasants from whom they obtained food might betray them. As a result, the Bielski group moved in December 1943 to what became a permanent base in the Naliboki Forest, a swampy, scarcely accessible region on the right bank of the Niemen River, east of Lida and northeast of Nowogrodek.

It was in this primitive and unlikely setting that the Bielski group created a community. Despite some opposition from within the group, Tuvia Bielski never wavered in his determination to accept and protect all Jewish refugees, regardless of age or gender. The Bielskis never turned anyone away, permitting the creation of a mobile family “camp”—in effect, a Jewish community in the forest. The group organized the skilled workers among the Jewish refugees into workshops, which employed at least 200 people, including cobblers, tailors, carpenters, leather workers, and blacksmiths.

In addition, the group established a mill, a bakery, and a laundry. The leadership managed a primitive infirmary, a school for the children, a synagogue, and even a courthouse/jail. Work groups supplied the camp with food and cleared the land where possible for the cultivation of wheat and barley.

Bielski Group at mass grave site 1948

COOPERATION WITH OTHER PARTISAN GROUPS

The Naliboki Forest was under the administration of Soviet partisans, wherever the Germans were not present. Although the Bielski group had no ideological orientation, Tuvia Bielski and the other leaders cooperated with the Soviet partisans: Bielski himself established a friendly relationship with the regional Soviet partisan commander, General Vasily Yefimovich Chernyshev (codenamed “Platon”). Despite the prevalence of antisemitic sentiment among several of the Soviet partisan detachments, General “Platon” protected the Bielski group. He recognized the vital role of the camp as a maintenance base for Soviet partisans. In 1944, the camp leaders received weapons from Soviet partisan headquarters.

Bielski refused Soviet requests to provide an operations unit from among the approximately 150 men in his group who engaged in armed operations. He did not wish to abandon the married men, the women, and the children, for he knew that they could not survive without the armed protection of the armed men in his group. This concern was another reason for him in 1943 to draw his entire group deeper into the most inaccessible regions of the forest. Subsequently, although the group remained de facto united and under Tuvia Bielski’s command, they formally split into the “Kalinin” and “Ordzhonikidze” detachments of the Kirov Brigade of Soviet partisans.

At the same time that it saved lives and protected the noncombatants in the camp, the Bielski group carried out several operational missions. It attacked the Belorussian auxiliary police officials, as well as local farmers suspected of killing Jews. The group disabled German trains, blew up rail beds, destroyed bridges, and facilitated escapes from Jewish ghettos. The Bielski fighters often joined with Soviet partisans in operations against German guards and facilities, killing many Germans and Belorussian collaborators.


LIBERATION

On June 22, 1944, Soviet troops initiated a massive offensive in Eastern Belorussia. Within six weeks, the Soviet Army had destroyed the German Army Group Center and swept westward to the Vistula River in Poland, liberating all of Belorussia. At the time of liberation, the Bielski group had reached its peak of 1,230 people. More than 70 percent were women, elderly persons, and children, who otherwise would have perished under the German occupation. An estimated 50 members of the Bielski group were killed, an unusually low casualty rate in comparison not only with other partisan detachments but also with Jewish groups in the region.

After World War II, in 1945 Tuvia and Zus Bielski emigrated with their families to Palestine. They both fought in the Israeli armed forces during the 1948 war that established the Israeli state. They subsequently immigrated to the United States. Asael was drafted into the Soviet Army. He died on the front in East Prussia in February 1945.