America, Not Keith Ellison, decides what book a congressman takes his oath on
By Dennis Prager
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the first Muslim elected to the United States Congress, has announced that he will not take his oath of office on the Bible, but on the bible of Islam, the Koran.
He should not be allowed to do so -- not because of any American hostility to the Koran, but because the act undermines American civilization.
A Palestinian woman holds the Koran during a Hamas rally against Israeli troops operation in northern Gaza strip November 3, 2006. Israeli troops shot and killed two Palestinian women acting as human shields between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian gunmen during a clash at a Gaza mosque on Friday, witnesses said, before the gunmen escaped. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem (GAZA)
First, it is an act of hubris that perfectly exemplifies multiculturalist activism -- my culture trumps America's culture. What Ellison and his Muslim and leftist supporters are saying is that it is of no consequence what America holds as its holiest book; all that matters is what any individual holds to be his holiest book.
Forgive me, but America should not give a hoot what Keith Ellison's favorite book is. Insofar as a member of Congress taking an oath to serve America and uphold its values is concerned, America is interested in only one book, the Bible. If you are incapable of taking an oath on that book, don't serve in Congress. In your personal life, we will fight for your right to prefer any other book. We will even fight for your right to publish cartoons mocking our Bible. But, Mr. Ellison, America, not you, decides on what book its public servants take their oath.
Devotees of multiculturalism and political correctness who do not see how damaging to the fabric of American civilization it is to allow Ellison to choose his own book need only imagine a racist elected to Congress. Would they allow him to choose Hitler's "Mein Kampf," the Nazis' bible, for his oath? And if not, why not? On what grounds will those defending Ellison's right to choose his favorite book deny that same right to a racist who is elected to public office?
Of course, Ellison's defenders argue that Ellison is merely being honest; since he believes in the Koran and not in the Bible, he should be allowed, even encouraged, to put his hand on the book he believes in. But for all of American history, Jews elected to public office have taken their oath on the Bible, even though they do not believe in the New Testament, and the many secular elected officials have not believed in the Old Testament either. Yet those secular officials did not demand to take their oaths of office on, say, the collected works of Voltaire or on a volume of New York Times editorials, writings far more significant to some liberal members of Congress than the Bible. Nor has one Mormon official demanded to put his hand on the Book of Mormon. And it is hard to imagine a scientologist being allowed to take his oath of office on a copy of "Dianetics" by L. Ron Hubbard.
So why are we allowing Keith Ellison to do what no other member of Congress has ever done -- choose his own most revered book for his oath?
The answer is obvious -- Ellison is a Muslim. And whoever decides these matters, not to mention virtually every editorial page in America, is not going to offend a Muslim. In fact, many of these people argue it will be a good thing because Muslims around the world will see what an open society America is and how much Americans honor Muslims and the Koran.
This argument appeals to all those who believe that one of the greatest goals of America is to be loved by the world, and especially by Muslims because then fewer Muslims will hate us (and therefore fewer will bomb us).
But these naive people do not appreciate that America will not change the attitude of a single American-hating Muslim by allowing Ellison to substitute the Koran for the Bible. In fact, the opposite is more likely: Ellison's doing so will embolden Islamic extremists and make new ones, as Islamists, rightly or wrongly, see the first sign of the realization of their greatest goal -- the Islamicization of America.
When all elected officials take their oaths of office with their hands on the very same book, they all affirm that some unifying value system underlies American civilization. If Keith Ellison is allowed to change that, he will be doing more damage to the unity of America and to the value system that has formed this country than the terrorists of 9-11. It is hard to believe that this is the legacy most Muslim Americans want to bequeath to America. But if it is, it is not only Europe that is in trouble.
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has written a letter to the American people. He is using our own media to undermine our government and try to spread his own absurd views by causing division within ourselves. As if we don't have enough problems or differences to worry about we have to put up with this crap! Enough I say!
Fox News has put up a forum for Americans to write letters to this little Hitler and they will post them on their website. Email letters here.
In other news...Al-Qaida has denounced the Pope's visit to Turkey, calling it a "crusader campaign" against Islam. Now who would have expected this, radical terrorist muslims denouncing the holiest man alive?
Lee Camp, a theologian from David Lipscomb University in Nashville says that Christians must 'let go' of some beliefs for the sake of peace by forsaking the Christian model. Read the entire article here. A historically conservative Church of Christ university, Lipscomb appears to be falling into the politically correct trap of muslim appeasement.
Monday, November 27, 2006
Most people know from basic observation that there is a substantial difference between men and women, well, this study proves it. Apparently, women talk three times as much as men do, engage more brain power during mundane chit-chat, and get a rush from hearing their own voices that compares to heroin addicts when they get high.
The study also said that the brain's "sex processor" is twice as large in men as in women.
So I guess you could say that for women talking is like having sex?
Friday, November 24, 2006
Down Your Throat and In Your Face?
The debate about same-sex “marriage” is often reduced to outrage toward those who dare offer opposition. Rarely is there a calm debate over the real issues involved.
Instead, pro-family promoters are brutally stereotyped as hate-filled Bible-thumping conservatives who are attempting to push their narrow-minded beliefs down the throats of all in society. Their in-your-face attitude is labeled dangerous and irrational.
It is ironic that those liberals who rail against stereotyping should be so ardent in practicing it. Even a most elementary reading of most serious pro-family materials would be enough to dismiss such stereotypes. Even worse is the fact that the use of this stereotype has become a battering ram against those who would dare oppose any aspect of the homosexual agenda.
In face of such irrational attacks, perhaps it would be helpful to analyze not the pro-family arguments but the stereotype. Are all those opposed to same-sex “marriage” really hate-filled Bible-thumping conservatives attempting to push their narrow-minded beliefs down the throats of all in society?
Down Your Throat
Perhaps the most blatantly false part of the portrayal is the idea that social conservatives are forcing their agenda down the throats of Americans. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It is a technical impossibility since one cannot impose something that is already in place.
In the case of same-sex “marriage,” all conservative Americans are doing is reaffirming the status quo. They are affirming something that is the norm. In the case of Catholic Americans, they are affirming a position that has been consistently taught by Church fathers and saints for 2,000 years.
Exclusive traditional marriage is the law of the land. This law has been further enshrined by popular acclamation in a Federal Defense of Marriage Act signed by President Bill Clinton defining marriage as between a man and a woman. State versions of this act were later adopted by forty states. Taking the law of the land yet further, traditional marriage constitutional amendments have been overwhelmingly approved in 27 American states. Family advocates merely affirm what is already in place. In other words, nothing is being imposed.
That is not the case on the side of same-sex “marriage” advocates. They are in fact proposing something completely new. A tiny minority is claiming as a right something that has never been accepted or established in history. Since it is not the law of the land, they are seeking to change the laws to fit their agenda. They avoid at all cost bringing the issue to a popular vote. More often than not, it is the activism of judges that force acceptance. In other words, same-sex “marriage” is being imposed on society by the homosexual movement and its allies.
Regardless of one’s stand, one has to admit that if anyone is forcing something down the throat of America, it is the same-sex “marriage” promoters.
To extend the argument yet further, it is worthwhile to note that social conservatives are also affirming the scientific status quo. There is no scientific evidence to support the thesis that homosexuality is genetic. Scientists have searched in vain for a homosexual gene. When family promoters point this out, they are simply presenting the evidence not their own opinions.
Again, the other side does the exact opposite. Many pro-homosexual individuals simply deny the scientific record and gratuitously affirm that homosexuality is genetic because they feel it is that way. In other words, their down-your-throat approach is to present their own opinions as scientific fact.
Another common misconception by those who do the stereotyping is that pro-family promoters based their position solely on the Bible. Pro-homosexual activists contend that since some Americans do not believe in the Bible, all such arguments are invalid.
Again, the reasoning is flawed. Indeed, the Bible is full of quotes that unequivocally oppose homosexual relations, revisionist exegeses notwithstanding. Pro-family promoters undeniably find these citations helpful in countering same-sex marriage. Religious and moral arguments are very important in the debate but they are far from being the only resource.
Pro-family supporters meet the opposition on every major field of argument. In the field of philosophy, they defend a long Western tradition of natural law, written on the hearts of all men, from which is built a morality of unchangeable laws. These laws are the same, always and everywhere and the basis of law in civilized society.
From the point of view of social science, social conservatives point out the factors of the homosexual lifestyle which disqualifies them for marriage. They cite, for example, the sterility of these relationships and the promiscuous lifestyles often adopted by those in so-called stable relationships who see no contradiction between monogamy and infidelity.
Across the board, the homosexual lifestyle presents greater risks in everything that makes for a healthy family. Pro-family scholars document high indexes of health problems, infectious social diseases, mental health problems, alcoholism, drug use, suicide rates, domestic abuse, and child abuse.
At the same time, thousands of studies have been produced in many disciplines that prove the overwhelming benefits of traditional marriage to child well-being. They prove that marriage is more than a private emotional relationship; it is an undeniable social good that best protects the interest of the child, family and society.
The fact is that the social conservatives base their positions on much more than just the Bible. In every major field and discipline, they have gathered material to support their position.
On the other side, the same quality of research is not often found. For example, studies seeking to prove that sexual orientation in family life is irrelevant have consistently suffered from design flaws, methodological problems and lack of long term evidence. The homosexual movement has often used misinformation, false premises and shoddy pop science like that of the late Alfred Kinsey. At times “evidence” consists of sentimental vignettes and emotionally charged prime time network reports.
Finally there is the claim that social conservatives opposing same-sex marriage are hateful and uncharitable. Such accusations themselves are ironically often couched in passionate condemning diatribes.
Again, such characterizations are unjust. Those opposing same-sex marriage have no intention to defame or disparage anyone. No one is moved by personal hatred against any individual. In intellectually opposing individuals or organizations promoting the homosexual agenda, the sole intent of social conservatives is the defense of marriage, the family, and the precious remnants of Christian civilization in society.
In fact, far from being hateful, practicing Catholics are called to be filled with compassion and pray for those who struggle against unrelenting and violent temptation to sin, be it toward homosexual sin or otherwise. They pray for those who fall into homosexual sin out of human weakness, that God may assist them with His grace. They pray for the conversion of those radical activists pushing the homosexual agenda, even when doing everything permitted by law to block their efforts.
Down your throat and in your face? The evidence points to the other side.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Father, please accept our thanks today,
as round this table here we pause to pray;
Grateful hearts are warmed as we recall,
'tis from Thy bounty that our blessings fall.
This gladsome feast with loved ones now to share,
is but a measure of Thy tender care.
Bless us oh Lord, and these thy gifts which we are about to receive, from thy bounty, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Normally I am not a huge fan of Ann Coulter as she can be a little over the top, but she wrote a great piece on her blog today about the 6 imams booted off a US Airways flight from Minneapolis to Phoenix.
WHAT CAN I DO TO MAKE YOUR FLIGHT MORE UNCOMFORTABLE?
November 22, 2006
Six imams removed from a US Airways flight from Minneapolis to Phoenix are calling on Muslims to boycott the airline. If only we could get Muslims to boycott all airlines, we could dispense with airport security altogether.
Witnesses said the imams stood to do their evening prayers in the terminal before boarding, chanting "Allah, Allah, Allah" — coincidentally, the last words heard by hundreds of airline passengers on 9/11 before they died.
Witnesses also said that the imams were talking about Saddam Hussein, and denouncing America and the war in Iraq. About the only scary preflight ritual the imams didn't perform was the signing of last wills and testaments.
After boarding, the imams did not sit together and some asked for seat belt extensions, although none were morbidly obese. Three of the men had one-way tickets and no checked baggage.
Also they were Muslims.
The idea that a Muslim boycott against US Airways would hurt the airline proves that Arabs are utterly tone-deaf. This is roughly the equivalent of Cindy Sheehan taking a vow of silence. How can we hope to deal with people with no sense of irony? The next thing you know, New York City cab drivers will be threatening to bathe.
Come to think of it, the whole affair may have been a madcap advertising scheme cooked up by US Airways.
It worked with me. US Airways is my official airline now. Northwest, which eventually flew the Allah-spouting Muslims to their destinations, is off my list. You want to really hurt a U.S. air carrier's business? Have Muslims announce that it's their favorite airline.
The clerics had been attending an imam conference in Minneapolis (imam conference slogan: "What Happens in Minneapolis — Actually, Nothing Happened in Minneapolis"). But instead of investigating the conference, the government is now investigating my favorite airline.
What threat could Muslims flying from Minnesota to Arizona be?
Three of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 received their flight training in Arizona. Long before the attacks, an FBI agent in Phoenix found it curious that so many Arabs were enrolled in flight school. But the FBI rebuffed his request for an investigation on the grounds that his suspicions were based on the same invidious racial profiling that has brought US Airways under investigation and into my good graces.
Lynne Stewart's client, the Blind Sheik, Omar Abdel-Rahman, is serving life in prison in a maximum security lock-up in Minnesota. One of the six imams removed from the US Airways plane was blind, so Lynne Stewart was the one missing clue that would have sent all the passengers screaming from the plane.
Wholly apart from the issue of terrorism, don't we have a seller's market for new immigrants? How does a blind Muslim get to the top of the visa list? Is there a shortage of blind, fanatical clerics in this country that I haven't noticed? Couldn't we get some Burmese with leprosy instead? A 4-year-old could do a better job choosing visa applicants than the U.S. Department of Immigration.
One of the stunt-imams in US Airways' advertising scheme, Omar Shahin, complained about being removed from the plane, saying: "Six scholars in handcuffs. It's terrible."
Yes, especially when there was a whole conference of them! Six out of 150 is called "poor law enforcement." How did the other 144 "scholars" get off so easy?
Shahin's own "scholarship" consisted of continuing to deny Muslims were behind 9/11 nearly two months after the attacks. On Nov. 4, 2001, The Arizona Republic cited Shahin's "skepticism that Muslims or bin Laden carried out attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon." Shahin complained that the government was "focusing on the Arabs, the Muslims. And all the evidence shows that the Muslims are not involved in this terrorist act."
In case your memory of that time is hazy, within three days of the attack, the Justice Department had released the names of all 19 hijackers — names like Majed Moqed, Ahmed Alghamdi, Mohand Alshehri, Ahmed Ibrahim A. Al Haznawi and Ahmed Alnami. The government had excluded all but 19 passengers as possible hijackers based on extensive interviews with friends and family of nearly every passenger on all four flights. Some of the hijackers' seat numbers had been called in by flight attendants on the planes.
By early October, bin Laden had produced a videotape claiming credit for the attacks. And by Nov. 4, 2001, The New York Times had run well over 100 articles on the connections between bin Laden and the hijackers — even more detailed and sinister than the Times' flowcharts on neoconservatives!
Also, if I remember correctly, al-Qaida had taken out full-page ads in Variety and the Hollywood Reporter thanking their agents for the attacks.
But now, on the eve of the busiest travel day in America, these "scholars" have ginned up America's PC victim machinery to intimidate airlines and passengers from noticing six imams chanting "Allah" before boarding a commercial jet.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
The Cato Institute reports that Economic Nobel Prize winner Milton Friedman has died, he was 94.
While in college studying economics, my professors regarded Friedman as a living legend, someone who had revolutionized economic thought, impacting both the Reagan administration and the Thatcher government. The world has lost a true genius today.
THE KURDISH KEY TO THE MIDDLE EAST
Dr. Jack Wheeler
Among the most fascinating folks in the world are people known as the Kurds. They are older than history. The Land of Kurda is mentioned in Sumerian clay tablets - the world's oldest writing - over 5,000 years ago. The Land of Kurda - Kurdistan - was ancient five millennia ago.
The Kurds had been living there for thousands of years before 3,000 BC - and they are still living there today, in the mountains of what is now northwestern Iran, northern Iraq, northeastern Syria, and southeastern Turkey.
They number in the tens of millions - five million in Iraq, ten million in Iran, three million in Syria, between twenty and thirty million in Turkey. They are by far the largest ethnic group on earth without their own country.
This has always made them a threat to the countries that divide up their homeland of Kurdistan. Always. The Kurds have been fighting the Persians for 2,500 years, the Arabs for 1,300 years, the Turks for 500 years. Western governments look upon the Kurds as a problem which threatens to break apart the fragile map of the Middle East into chaotic pieces:
Now at last, the time has arrived to look upon the Kurds as an opportunity rather than a threat, not as a problem but a solution. The emerging reality is that the Kurds are the key to peace, freedom, and democracy throughout the entire Middle East.
I am writing this in the oldest continuously inhabited city in the world - Arbil in northern Iraq. Unlike other claimants to that title such as Damascus and Jericho, Arbil has been continuously inhabited for millennia by the same people, the Kurds. ("Arbil" or "Irbil" is the name on the map, it's Saddam-era Arabic name. The original Kurdish name is Hewlar, pronounced how-lair.)
Every day in the newspapers there are headlines about "the civil war in Iraq." There is no civil war here, in Iraqi Kurdistan. There is no terrorism, no IED attacks, no car bombings, no suicide bombers, no gangs of Shia murderers slitting the throats of Sunnis and vice versa.
In their place is a construction boom. Everywhere you look in Arbil ( a city of close to two million) and Iraqi Kurdistan's second largest city, Sulaymanieh (over one million), you see built or being built beautiful new homes, office buildings, hotels, car dealerships, and shopping malls.
The "civil war" is taking place in the Sunni and Shia regions of tripartite Iraq. It is the third part, Kurdish Iraq, that is holding Iraq together. The Kurds are already the key to keeping Iraq intact. When is it going to dawn on Washington that they are the key to solving the Middle East's other intractable problems?
It won't until it somehow acquires the wisdom to support Kurds in Iran - there are twice as many Kurds in Iran as in Iraq - struggling to liberate Eastern (Iranian) Kurdistan from the nightmare tyranny of the Mullacracy in Tehran. Kurds like Hussein Yazdanpanah, leader of the Revolutionary Union of Kurdistan (RUK) whose guerrilla fighters have been conducting anti-mullacracy activities for a generation.
I am writing this in his home. I am looking at a photograph on the wall of his dining room. It was taken in 1980, after Ayatollah Khomeini declared a Holy War on the Kurds for not accepting his dictatorship.
An execution squad of Khomeini soldiers are kneeling and firing their rifles point blank at a line of Kurdish captives. Several of the Kurds have just been hit, and you see their knees buckling and their bodies thrown back with the shock of the bullets. They are Hussein Yazdanpanah's relatives.
His family has been fighting the Mullacracy since its inception in 1979. But actually, his family has been fighting for Kurdish freedom for the last 500 years.
Note what they and Kurds in general have not been fighting for: Islam.
Kurds are reluctant Moslems, who recite to their children stories of how Islam was forced upon their ancestors by Arab conquerors in the 7th century. They pay literal lip service to Allah, mouthing prayers in Koranic Arabic they don't understand. The ancient Kurdish language is far, far different from Arabic - thus while many Kurds also speak colloquial Arabic, very few of them read the classical Arabic of the Koran.
It is the month of Ramadan right now, a time of fasting and religious observance, but many young Kurds are ignoring it. That's here, in Iraqi or "South" Kurdistan (southwestern Turkey is North Kurdistan, while eastern Syria is West Kurdistan).
In Iranian or East Kurdistan, belief in Islam is collapsing. The mullacracy has disgraced Islam in the eyes of young eastern Kurds and are thus rejecting it en masse.
More and more, they are returning to their original religion of Zoroastrianism. "Zoroaster" is the Anglicized pronunciation of Zardasht, a religious teacher from the Urumia area (now in Eastern Kurdistan near where Turkey, Iraq, and Iran come together) who lived around 1200 BC.
He taught that the earth was the battleground between the forces of good, represented by the god Yazdan (also named Ahura-Mazda), and the forces of evil, represented by the god Ahriman. The way to overcome evil and to take the path to heaven, he counseled was Good Thoughts, Good Words, Good Deeds.
Cyrus I (590-529 BC), founder of the Persian Empire, adopted the worship of Zardasht or Zoroaster and declared it to be the state religion of Persia. The Three Magi who visit the infant Jesus in the manger at Bethlehem in the Book of Matthew were Zoroastrians.
In the mid-7th century AD, the invading Arab hordes forced the Kurds and Persians to abandon their religion and accept Islam at the point of a sword. After 13 centuries, that sword has lost its edge for the Kurds as they return to their ancient faith.
One of them is Hussein Yazdanpanah, whose name means "Under the shadow (protection) of God."
Yes, there are mosques and minarets and muezzins calling people to prayer here in Iraqi Kurdistan. You see older women (although never the younger) wearing a nun-like black cloak called a hijab. But Kurds take their ethnic identity as primary. Their religion comes in second.
Thus the Kurds have a long, long history of religious tolerance. Adherents of a religious sect formed of a mix of paganism, Zoroastrianism, and Islam known as the Yezidis flourish among them. Their often-odd beliefs such as proscriptions against wearing the color blue and never eating lettuce are easily accepted.
The descendants of the Empire of Assyria that reached its peak in the 7th century BC adopted Christianity in 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The Christian Assyrian community has been a part of Kurdish culture ever since. There are a number of Christian churches of varying denominations here in Hewler (Arbil) and elsewhere in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Yet for all of this, just about no one in Washington seems able to apply it to Iran.
It's not just the invertebrates of the State Department allergic to regime change in principal - it's even astute folks like Charles Krauthammer and Fred Barnes who say on Fox News they don't know of an alternative to the only choices they see: militarily attack Iran or capitulate to the Mullacracy and make the best deal we can.
They, like most everyone else, are unaware of the potential of the Kurds to liberate Iran. It's not just that Eastern or Iranian Kurdistan is exploding with dissent, or even that liberation movements like the RUK and KDPI (Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran) are organizing that dissent.
It's that the Eastern Kurds are not demanding secession from Iran, but autonomy within a federated Iran - just like what the Southern or Iraqi Kurds have achieved in Iraq.
They realize that the dream of an independent, united Kurdistan - North (Turkey), South (Iraq), West (Syria), and East (Iran) Kurdistan all in one sovereign nation carved out of the map of the Middle East, is just that - a dream.
The reason is Turkey. The Kurds of Iran, Iraq, and Syria are grossly outnumbered by the Kurds of Turkey and have no wish to be dominated by them. In a fully united Kurdistan, they would be.
Worse, the Kurds of Turkey are plagued with a totalitarian Marxist terrorist organization called the PKK, the Kurdish Workers Party.
Everyone here in Iraqi Kurdistan, every liberation movement in Iranian Kurdistan, hates the PKK. Originally set up by KGB agent Yevgeni Primakov in the 1970s and sponsored by the Soviets to destabilize NATO-member Turkey, the PKK is now sponsored by the Mullacracy of Iran. The main base of the PKK with several thousand PKK guerrillas, is near Urumia in Iran near the Turkish Border.
A liberated Iran would end this support, and the Iraqi and Iranian Kurds could then help the Turkish Kurds eradicate the PKK and bring autonomy to a Turkish Kurdistan within a fully democratic Turkey. (Turkey doesn't even recognize the existence of their Kurds, calling them "Mountain Turks." All attempts to have Kurdish schools, newspapers, and other expressions of Kurdish identity are brutally suppressed.)
Even with that eventuality, Iranian Kurds have no intention of merging with Turkish Kurds who outnumber them so greatly. Thus support from the United States - money, military and political training, supplies - for them represents the third alternative, the way out of the dilemma to attacking or capitulating to the Mullacracy.
In an attempt to find out how viable this third alternative is, I am about to be taken inside Iran with a group of RUK guerrillas. Surreptitiously crossing a heavily-guarded border with armed guerrillas is not something to be undertaken lightly. But it is the only way to see for oneself.
Next week, I'll tell you what I experienced, and then we can discuss further how the Kurds are the key to achieving freedom in Iran and democracy in the Middle East. In the meantime.... Wish me luck.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Remember when Cat Stevens was denied entry into the United States in 2004 after his name appeared on the "no fly list"? Well, it appears he might be more deserving of that distinction then originally thought. View the article here. Thanks to the Mudville Gazette for the original link to the post.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
What President Bush should say to us:
By Diana West
If this were a sane world, this is what we would hear during the president's next address to the nation:
My fellow Americans.
President Bush pauses before the start of a meeting with the Homeland Security Team at the National Counterterrorism Center on Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2006 in McLean, Va. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
I come to you now, gravely aware that what I am about to say will radically change the course of what we have, for nearly five long years now, called the war on terror.
For almost as long as I have held this office, I have been leading this war. On my watch, the United States sent troops into Afghanistan to destroy the Taliban and drive Al Qaeda from the safe haven it used to plan attacks on our country. On my watch, we sent troops into Iraq to topple Saddam Hussein and break this link in the terrorism food chain. On my watch, the United States spearheaded an ambitious drive to bring democracy to regions of the Middle and Near East as part of an effort to touch brutalized peoples with the salve of freedom and see them recover their free will, forever strengthened by what we in America prize as God-given rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
I made this democratization process the centerpiece of my second term, the core of my political strategy against global terrorism, because history has taught us that democracies don't make war, or support terrorist attacks, on one another. I didn't, as one predecessor of mine famously put it, simply want "to make the world safe for democracy." I wanted to make the world -- that part of the world from which terrorism mainly springs -- democratic, and therefore, safe.
Over the past few years, then, the United States has supported fledgling democracies in Afghanistan Iraq and the Palestinian Authority. We have proudly assisted in making free and fair elections possible in these places, and with excellent results -- at least with regard to the freeness and the fairness of the elections. But the fact is, when these peoples have spoken, what we have heard, or should have been hearing, in the expression of their collective will is that the mechanics of democracy alone (one citizen, one vote) do not automatically manufacture democrats -- if by democrats we mean citizens who believe first and foremost in the kind of liberty that guarantees freedom of conscience and equality before the law.
On the contrary, each of these new democracies has produced constitutions that enshrine Islamic law. Because Islamic law, known as "sharia," does not permit equality between the sexes or among religions, it is anything but what we in American consider "democratic." Indeed, sharia law endows Muslims, and Muslim men in particular, with a superior position in society. It also outlaws words and deeds that oppose this inequitable power structure for being "un-Islamic." From this same Islamic legal tradition comes the mandate for jihad (holy war, usually against non-Muslims) and dhimmitude, the official state of inferiority of non-Muslims under Islam.
With their devotion to Islamic tradition, then, these new democracies have, in effect, peacefully voted themselves into the same doctrinal camp as the many terror groups that violently strike at the non-Muslim world in the name of jihad for the sake of a caliphate -- a Muslim world government ruled according to sharia.
So be it. What I mean by that is, it is neither in the national interest nor in the national will for the United States of America to attempt to reshape such a culture to conform to our notions of liberty and justice for all. It is neither in the national interest nor in the national will to attempt to reform a belief system that animates this culture to conform to our notions of freedom of worship. It is, however, in our national interest, and must become a part of our national will, to ensure that Islamic law does not come to our own shores, whether by means of violent jihad terrorism as practiced by the likes of Al Qaeda or Hezbollah, or through peaceful patterns of migration, such as those that have already Islamized large parts of Europe.
The shift I am describing -- from a pro-democracy offensive to an anti-sharia defensive -- means a national course correction. Rather than continuing to emphasize the democratization of the Muslim Middle East as our key tool in the war on terror, I will henceforth emphasize the prevention of sharia from reaching the West as our key tool in the war on terror.
This will entail the immediate adoption of the following steps.
At home, the line of defense is clear. It is our border. My new strategy calls on us to think of our border as more than just a line on a map. We need to see the border as a cultural line also, a defining line of freedom against proponents of Shariah, which, I cannot emphasize enough, poses a direct threat to our founding principles of liberty and equality. It is that simple. There is a crucial military component to the anti-Shariah defensive, which I will outline momentarily. But without taking civil precautions at the border, even a decisive military victory abroad could be nullified by non-violent means at home.
How? Through largely unregulated immigration of peoples from "Shariah states" — those regions whose governing traditions derive, wholly or in some important part, from the edicts of Islam. If such an influx continues, Islamic law will be accommodated, adopted and even legislated, at least in some jurisdictions, according to majority will. We know this to be true because such a "Shariah shift" is already transforming what sociologists call post-Christian Europe into an increasingly Islamic sphere. If we do not want to see such changes here, we must act. Accordingly, I am asking Congress to amend our laws to bar further Islamic immigration, beginning with immigration from Shariah states.
This, the most crucial domestic component of my anti-Shariah program, will undoubtedly be regarded as the most controversial because it necessitates making a definitive judgment against the laws promulgated by Islam, a religion. This may appear to go against our cherished tradition of religious tolerance, not to mention good manners. But if the laws promulgated by Islam directly threaten freedom of conscience, freedom of expression and religion, women's rights, and key concepts of equality — and they do — it is a sign of intellectual rigor mortis not to say so. And I do say so, but, again, not to launch a transformative military or cultural offensive against Islam, but to initiate the mobilization of a defensive movement to prevent the Islamization of American law and liberty.
And what about Iraq? Thanks to American-led coalition troops, a Ba'athist dictatorship has been dismantled, and Iraq is a parliamentary democracy under a new constitution. It is a matter of increasing significance, however, that this new constitution, ratified by the people of Iraq, enshrines Islamic law above all. This means that when the new Iraq joined the ranks of democratic nations, it simultaneously joined the ranks of Shariah states. This may help explain widespread Iraqi sympathy for Hezbollah, for example, the Iranian-supported Shi'ite terrorist group that not only attacks American and Israeli interests, but also seeks the expansion of Shariah. It also begs the question about long-term American support: How, in the war on terrorism, can we uphold a partner that feels solidarity with terrorists?
We cannot — certainly not as a realistic war strategy to safeguard the liberty of the Free World. Once, I saw the war that began on September 11 as dividing the world between those countries that were with us, and those that were against us. I have now come to define the crisis, both cultural and military, as occurring between the Free World and the Shariah World. The centrality of Shariah in Islam is not something Americans can or should try to change. But it is not something we can ignore, either.
With this centrality in mind, our goals in the Middle East should change from, in effect, promoting Shariah-democracy to preventing the export of Shariah and terrorism to advance Shariah. Accordingly, I have directed our military to formulate a plan to redeploy American troops from Iraq's cities, where they have been operating at great risk to attain stability for the Iraqi government, to bases in the north. From there, they may assist as needed in our mission to neutralize the terrorism — and Shariah — exporting capabilities of freedom's enemies in the region. These would include nuke-seeking Iran and Syria, without whose support Hezbollah would not exist, and Saudi Arabia, from whose coffers comes global jihad.
What we call the war on terror now moves into a more focused phase, which better defines our mission and makes it more attainable. The road ahead is long and difficult, but our next steps are clear.
God bless the United States.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Great article by Professor Moshe Sharon about Islam, view it here.
Thursday, November 9, 2006
Time for Democrats to Prove our Point
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life
Pendulums swing, and political experts point out that the results of
yesterday's elections are not unusual for the sixth year of a two-term
President. I will leave to them the detailed political commentary about
the dynamics of this election. Let me share with you, however, some key
points for us to keep in mind as a pro-life movement, and as we
continue with renewed zeal to press forward with our goals.
1. The Democrats gained power by latching onto our momentum, not
theirs. These comments in the Washington Post today are instructive: "The
complexion of the Democratic presence in Congress will change as well.
Party politics will be shaped by the resurgence of "Blue Dog" Democrats,
who come mainly from the South and from rural districts in the Midwest
and often vote like Republicans. Top Democrats such as Rep. Rahm Emanuel
(Ill.) see these middle-of-the-road lawmakers as the future of the
party in a nation that leans slightly right of center. In private talks
before the election, Emanuel and other top Democrats told their members
they cannot allow the party's liberal wing to dominate the agenda next
And the hear of the "liberal wing" is support for abortion on demand.
The Democrats did not (and could not) gain any control in Congress by
opposing the pro-life position, but rather by having enough candidates
who claimed to embrace it (like Bob Casey, Jr.). Neither party made
abortion a top campaign issue; meanwhile, on issues like the war or taxes
or spending, pro-life people take various positions. Democratic advances
are no indication that people buy into the party's platform on
abortion, which in fact the American public has never supported.
2. Unless pro-life wins, nobody wins. The Democrats' continued failure
to affirm that government must protect unborn children from the
violence of abortion calls into serious question their ability to speak
credibly about war. In 1994, Mother Teresa asked President Clinton, and all
America, "The greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it
is a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child,
murder by the mother herself. And if we accept that a mother can kill even
her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?"
(Speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, February 3, 1994).
The Washington Post reports today that exit polls found 41 percent of
voters rated corruption "extremely important" to their decision. Yet
corruption cuts both political ways. The willingness to permit, under law,
the dismemberment of children in the womb without so much as supporting
measures to give them pain relief represents a deep corruption of the
mind and heart. In fact, one of the first questions I have for the new
House leadership is, "What action will you take on the Unborn Child Pain
Awareness Act, that would require a mother to be given the option of
providing pain relief for her unborn child at 20 or more weeks of
pregnancy before killing that child by abortion?"
Indeed, it's time for Democrats to prove our point. Every effort to
build a just society will fail until we eliminate the most fundamental
injustice. We cannot welcome the poor or the immigrant without welcoming
our own children, and we cannot advance peace in the world until there's
peace in the womb.
3. Culturally, we continue to have the momentum. The fact is, we are
well on our way to re-establishing peace in the womb, despite the
Democratic extremism on abortion.
Today, I will be in the Supreme Court to listen to the oral arguments
in which the Bush Administration will defend the Federal Ban on
This law represents the first time the United States has banned an
abortion procedure since Roe vs. Wade. That would not have happened except
for the election victories of the last six years. Moreover, the law is
being considered by a Supreme Court with two new Justices, placed there
again as a result of electoral progress over the last six years and
likely to be favorable to upholding the ban.
Every trend continues to move in our direction:
* opinion polls about abortion
* the declining number of abortions, abortionists, and abortion mills
* the strong new motivation of our young pro-life activists who know
they are abortion survivors
* the growing voice of women and men harmed by abortion, who contradict
its promise of "benefit"
* the evidence in science about who the child is
* the medical evidence that abortion is no benefit to women
* the sociological evidence that abortion is no benefit to society
* a new wave of clergy who are more ready for the pro-life battle than
* a new wave of reporters and other professionals who are far more
pro-life than their predecessors
and much more.
4. The vote on the South Dakota ban does not mean what abortion
supporters want it to mean. The American people continue to oppose all but a
small fraction of the abortions that are permitted. The circumstances in
which most of the American public supports the legality of abortion are
the circumstances of rape, incest, or a threat to the mother's life or
physical health - circumstances which account for a few percentage
points of the total numbers of abortion. This, in fact, explains why there
was not majority support at the ballot box for the South Dakota
abortion ban. Pro-abortion forces, bringing most of their money in from
outside of the state, bargained on being able to get the people to reject a
"no rape exception policy," and hence miss the forest for the trees. The
people of South Dakota don't support the Planned Parenthood policy of
abortion on demand, and neither does the rest of America. But don't hold
your breath waiting for abortion supporters to tell you that.
5. Keep politics in perspective. Ultimately, what are we seeking when
we try to put pro-life public officials into office? We are not looking
to them to do our work for us. We are looking to them to do their work
and to let us do ours. Ultimately, the People of God have the
responsibility for ending abortion, and will do so. The only question is how
many obstacles public officials will put in their way, not whether public
officials will stop them. The work of public officials is, first and
foremost, to protect the public. Yet it is that same duty that falls to
the People of God as they continue to expose the truth about abortion,
promote alternatives, heal those wounded by abortion and help them speak
out, close abortion facilities, and continue to work within the
legislative and political arena to challenge government to fulfill the purpose
for which it was established.
6. Start working now for 2008. Pendulums swing, and elections are about
people getting involved. The time to begin the effort to elect people
in 2008, including a pro-life president, is now. Mobilize, educate, grow
your lists, and be more vocal and confident than ever before. I look
forward to working together with you to pick up the slack, awaken our
fellow citizens and believers with the enduring message of truth and life,
and restoring, in culture and in law, the protection of our most
vulnerable brothers and sisters. Remember, we are not just working for
victory; we are working from victory. Victory is our starting point, because
Christ is Risen. The outcome of the battle for life has already been
decided. It only remains for us to be sure to do our part to proclaim,
celebrate, and serve that victory, and bring its transforming power to
every segment of our society!
God bless you!
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life
Wednesday, November 8, 2006
So George Allen has lost his Virgina Senate race to Jim Webb. Great job America, you've blown another election. Sure the Republican party has it's shortcomings, but its still better than the Democratic alternative! By allowing the Democrats to take over the House and Senate you have all but eliminated any chance of a strict constructionist being elected to the Supreme Court.
Why could you not pass the abortion ban in South Dakota or parental notification in California and Oregon? How about the ban on cloning in Missouri, or the marriage amendment in Arizona? You couldn't even reelect arguably the best man in the senate, Rick Santorum. Does our country have any moral values left? Is the only issue that matters to people the Iraq war, or rather the desire to get the hell out as quickly as possible?
Do you realize the implications of Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House? The very fact that she is third in line for the presidency is beyond scary.
So now what, is it time to just let Kerry, Clinton, Boxer, Feinstein, Pelosi, Reid, Schumer and the like run around and just have their way?
I say don't give up hope yet, maybe this is just the wake up call we needed. The Republican party now has a choice: get back to their conservative base, the ones who put them in power to begin with; or, move towards the Democratic left and alienate all of us who still have some sense of morals and decency. This choice will be very interesting to watch over the next two years.
The AP is reporting that Jim Webb has defeated George Allen for the Virgina Senate seat. With this victory the Democrats have officially taken control of both Houses.
So what happened? Where did the Republican party go wrong? President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Karl Rove, they all predicted that Republicans would maintain control, even if by only the slimmest of margins. In my opinion, it came down to the following:
1. Americans want change. They're tired of hearing Republicans say they'll do something then watch as absolutely nothing happens, aka. balancing the budget. Closely tied into this is the fact that the Republican party has gotten away from their base, they've forgotten the values of the voters who put them in power as they have been seduced by Washingtonian politics. The party that was originally right of center has shifted somewhere to the Democratic left.
2. A Democratic party that offered change and values in the face of the Foley and Abramoff scandals. Americans decided that since Republicans have shied away from the moral integrity and values that got them there, maybe the alternative is better.
3. The Iraq war. No one wants to be there, but most people just don't get it about national security and the realistic threat that radical Islam poses. They're too busy listening to the drive-by media as they drive their posh suburbans to work to actually understand what's going on in the Middle East.
4. America is not as moral a country as we try to pretend; we like our freedom to do whatever we want, whenever we want, and at whatever the cost. Take the abortion ban in South Dakota, parental notification in California and Oregon, the marriage amendment in Arizona, cloning in Missouri. All of these failed measures show our lack of morality as country.
So what's it going to take to get the Republican party back on track? The way I see it they will either learn from their mistakes and get back to their conservative roots, or, they will play the appeasement card and try to get along with everybody by moving further left. Only time will tell, but I'm sure we're in for an interesting next couple years.
To ease my depression over the outcome of the majority of the elections and issues, here's Carlos Mencia and his hilarious video about slow people. It's very irreverent but a great watch and listen. Our country appears to be a little "dee dee dee" about the issues and candidates this year!
The ballots are still being counted but as it stands now the Democrats have taken control of the House and still need three seats to win the Senate. Looks like most of the propositions banning same-sex "marriage" will pass; however, the ban on abortion in South Dakota and parental notification in Oregon and California will most likely be defeated. All in all it has not been a good day for traditional Christian values. Makes me wonder where our country is headed and what people really look at when voting. We won't know the final outcomes on everything for a while, stay tuned, who knows what tomorrow's going to bring!
Monday, November 6, 2006
Sayyid Ali Husaini al-Sistani, a Grand Ayatollah of the Shiite Muslims and a political activist in Iraq has a website where he answers questions about Islamic teaching. So is he the final authority on all things Muslim? Thanks to Jimmy Akin for posting about this.
Sunday, November 5, 2006
For those who still don't believe that Islam is a religion of violence, check out Obsession the Movie. Here is the trailer from You Tube.
Friday, November 3, 2006
President of the Media Research Center, L. Brent Bozell III has a great article about what the Republican party should be standing for in this election, namely, the indecency that permeates our society. His insightful thoughts can be viewed here.
Thursday, November 2, 2006
World Net Daily published the following article today. I'd say it pretty much lays out exactly what the Republican pundits have been saying.
JERUSALEM – Everybody has an opinion about next Tuesday's midterm congressional election in the U.S. – including senior terrorist leaders interviewed by WND who say they hope Americans sweep the Democrats into power because of the party's position on withdrawing from Iraq, a move, as they see it, that ensures victory for the worldwide Islamic resistance.
The terrorists told WorldNetDaily an electoral win for the Democrats would prove to them Americans are "tired."
They rejected statements from some prominent Democrats in the U.S. that a withdrawal from Iraq would end the insurgency, explaining an evacuation would prove resistance works and would compel jihadists to continue fighting until America is destroyed.
They said a withdrawal would also embolden their own terror groups to enhance "resistance" against Israel.
"Of course Americans should vote Democrat," Jihad Jaara, a senior member of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror group and the infamous leader of the 2002 siege of Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity, told WND.
"This is why American Muslims will support the Democrats, because there is an atmosphere in America that encourages those who want to withdraw from Iraq. It is time that the American people support those who want to take them out of this Iraqi mud," said Jaara, speaking to WND from exile in Ireland, where he was sent as part of an internationally brokered deal that ended the church siege.
Jaara was the chief in Bethlehem of the Brigades, the declared "military wing" of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party.
Together with the Islamic Jihad terror group, the Brigades has taken responsibility for every suicide bombing inside Israel the past two years, including an attack in Tel Aviv in April that killed American teenager Daniel Wultz and nine Israelis.
Muhammad Saadi, a senior leader of Islamic Jihad in the northern West Bank town of Jenin, said the Democrats' talk of withdrawal from Iraq makes him feel "proud."
"As Arabs and Muslims we feel proud of this talk," he told WND. "Very proud from the great successes of the Iraqi resistance. This success that brought the big superpower of the world to discuss a possible withdrawal."
Abu Abdullah, a leader of Hamas' military wing in the Gaza Strip, said the policy of withdrawal "proves the strategy of the resistance is the right strategy against the occupation."
"We warned the Americans that this will be their end in Iraq," said Abu Abdullah, considered one of the most important operational members of Hamas' Izzedine al-Qassam Martyrs Brigades, Hamas' declared "resistance" department. "They did not succeed in stealing Iraq's oil, at least not at a level that covers their huge expenses. They did not bring stability. Their agents in the [Iraqi] regime seem to have no chance to survive if the Americans withdraw."
Abu Ayman, an Islamic Jihad leader in Jenin, said he is "emboldened" by those in America who compare the war in Iraq to Vietnam.
"[The mujahedeen fighters] brought the Americans to speak for the first time seriously and sincerely that Iraq is becoming a new Vietnam and that they should fix a schedule for their withdrawal from Iraq," boasted Abu Ayman.
The terror leaders spoke as the debate regarding the future of America's war in Iraq has perhaps become the central theme of midterm elections, with most Democrats urging a timetable for withdrawal and Republicans mostly advocating staying the course in Iraq.
President Bush has even said he would send more troops if Gen. George Casey, the top U.S. commander in Baghdad, said they are needed to stabilize the region
The debate became especially poignant following remarks by Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., the 2004 presidential candidate who voted in support of the war in Iraq. Earlier this week he intimated American troops are uneducated, and it is the uneducated who "get stuck in Iraq."
Kerry, under intense pressure from fellow Democrats, now says his remarks were a "botched joke."
Terror leaders reject Nancy Pelosi's comments on Iraqi insurgency
Many Democratic politicians and some from the Republican Party have stated a withdrawal from Iraq would end the insurgency there.
In a recent interview with CBS's "60 Minutes," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, stated, "The jihadists (are) in Iraq. But that doesn't mean we stay there. They'll stay there as long as we're there."
Pelosi would become House speaker if the Democrats win the majority of seats in next week's elections.
WND read Pelosi's remarks to the terror leaders, who unanimously rejected her contention an American withdrawal would end the insurgency.
Islamic Jihad's Saadi, laughing, stated, "There is no chance that the resistance will stop."
He said an American withdrawal from Iraq would "prove the resistance is the most important tool and that this tool works. The victory of the Iraqi revolution will mark an important step in the history of the region and in the attitude regarding the United States."
Jihad Jaara said an American withdrawal would "mark the beginning of the collapse of this tyrant empire (America)."
"Therefore, a victory in Iraq would be a greater defeat for America than in Vietnam."
Jaara said vacating Iraq would also "reinforce Palestinian resistance organizations, especially from the moral point of view. But we also learn from these (insurgency) movements militarily. We look and learn from them."
Hamas' Abu Abdullah argued a withdrawal from Iraq would "convince those among the Palestinians who still have doubts in the efficiency of the resistance."
"The victory of the resistance in Iraq would prove once more that when the will and the faith are applied victory is not only a slogan. We saw that in Lebanon (during Israel's confrontation against Hezbollah there in July and August); we saw it in Gaza (after Israel withdrew from the territory last summer) and we will see it everywhere there is occupation," Abdullah said.
While the terror leaders each independently compelled American citizens to vote for Democratic candidates, not all believed the Democrats would actually carry out a withdrawal from Iraq.
Saadi stated, "Unfortunately I think those who are speaking about a withdrawal will not do so when they are in power and these promises will remain electoral slogans. It is not enough to withdraw from Iraq. They must withdraw from Afghanistan and from every Arab and Muslim land they occupy or have bases."
He called both Democrats and Republicans "agents of the Zionist lobby in the U.S."
Abu Abdullah commented once Democrats are in power "the question is whether such a courageous leadership can [withdraw]. I am afraid that even after the American people will elect those who promise to leave Iraq, the U.S. will not do so. I tell the American people vote for withdrawal. Abandon Israel if you want to save America. Now will this Happen? I do not believe it."
Still Jihad Jaara said the alternative is better than Bush's party.
"Bush is a sick person, an alcoholic person that has no control of what is going on around him. He calls to send more troops but will very soon get to the conviction that the violence and terror that his war machine is using in Iraq will never impose policies and political regimes in the Arab world."