Posts Tagged ‘Egypt’

Why Did Obama Back Jihadists in Syria?

Monday, August 10th, 2015

This piece in Foreign Policy Journal is certainly eye-opening:

In Al Jazeera’s latest Head to Head episode, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency Michael Flynn confirms to Mehdi Hasan that not only had he studied the DIA memo predicting the West’s backing of an Islamic State in Syria when it came across his desk in 2012, but even asserts that the White House’s sponsoring of radical jihadists (that would emerge as ISIL and Nusra) against the Syrian regime was “a willful decision.” [Lengthy discussion of the DIA memo begins at the 8:50 mark.]

Amazingly, Flynn actually took issue with the way interviewer Mehdi Hasan posed the question—Flynn seemed to want to make it clear that the policies that led to the rise of ISIL were not merely the result of ignorance or looking the other way, but the result of conscious decision making:

Hasan: You are basically saying that even in government at the time you knew these groups were around, you saw this analysis, and you were arguing against it, but who wasn’t listening?

Flynn: I think the administration.

Hasan: So the administration turned a blind eye to your analysis?

Flynn: I don’t know that they turned a blind eye, I think it was a decision. I think it was a willful decision.

Hasan: A willful decision to support an insurgency that had Salafists, Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood?

Flynn: It was a willful decision to do what they’re doing.

The deeply puzzling thing about Obama’s Middle East policy is it’s sheer incoherence (except, of course, his unwavering dislike of Israel). His fixation on taking out Bashar Assad (a bad actor, to be sure, but not in the same league as the Iranian Mullahs who back Assad, and who Obama evidently has no qualms negotiating with) makes no strategic sense. In light of the above, he’s evidently funding the Islamic State in Syria, fighting it (in the most desultory manner possible) in Iraq, giving in to Iran on nuclear weapons, alienating allies Israel and Saudi Arabia, and has no discernible policy for a post-Morsi Egypt. Obama’s moves only make sense if he wants to promote a Sunni/Shia civil war, or as Obama’s personal fits of pique where he feels slighted. (Screw Syria for ignoring his red lines. Screw Israel for daring to reelect Netanyahu. Screw Iraq for Bush succeeding.)

The only certainty about Obama’s foreign policy is that future administrations will be dealing with the repercussions from his feckless, aimless foreign policy for decades to come.

(Hat tip: Jihad Watch.)

Egypt Behind Sisi As Long As He’s Pounding The Ikhwan

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

“The past two years have been the most violent and repressive in Egypt’s contemporary history.” True, but by and large the Egyptians themselves don’t seem to mind. Why?

Yet despite this bleak security outlook, Egypt is more politically stable than it’s been in years. Unlike the divided regimes that collapsed in the face of mass protests in January 2011 and June 2013, the Sisi regime is internally unified. And the various state institutions and civil groups that constitute the regime will likely remain tightly aligned for one basic reason: they view the Muslim Brotherhood as a significant threat to their respective interests and thus see the regime’s crackdown on the organization as essential to their own survival.

Lucky for Egypt (and the world) that Morsi and his Muslim Brothers were such idiots. They could have gotten a lot further Islamicising Egypt had they followed Erdogan’s incrementalist model…

Morsi Sentenced To Death in Egypt

Sunday, May 17th, 2015

Muslim Brotherhood leader and deposed President of Egypt Mohammed Morsi has been sentenced to death, along with more than 100 other people.

Most of the time, sentencing a popularly elected President ousted from power by the military would be a bad thing. This is not one of those times. Morsi tried to undermine Egypt’s democratic constitutional strictures (however weak and imperfect they were) in the name of turning the country into a radical Islamist state, following the classic African strongman blueprint of “One Man, One Vote, Once.” He lost an existential power struggle with the military and, in the long-standing traditions of the Arab world, he’ll be paying for losing with his life.

Both Egypt, and the world, will be better for his death, and the ruthless suppression of the Muslim Brotherhood.

LinkSwarm for March 27, 2015

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Those two outstanding Obama successes, ObamaCare and Middle East foreign policy, just keep succeeding…

  • Yet another ObamaCare timebomb threatens small businesses.
  • In case you hadn’t noticed, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are intervening directly in Yemen with other Sunni Arab nations, raising the significant possibility that Iran’s Big Yemen Adventure will turn into a full-blown Sunni/Shia Civil War.
  • Don’t you hate it when a bomb goes off in your mosque right in the middle of your “Death to America” chant?
  • But Iran supporting terrorists and attacking America’s allies in the region won’t stop Obama and Kerry from giving in on every Iranian demand for their toothless Iranian nuclear weapon deal.
  • Also, the Obama Administration just declassified a report on Israel’s nuclear program. It’s almost as if Obama truly wants to punish America ‘s allies and reward America’s enemies.
  • Think the Israelis are pissed at the fall of Yemen? It’s nothing compared to the rage of the Saudis and other Arabs.
  • Even Turkey’s Islamic government has decided Iran has gone too far.
  • Obama’s superpower is ignoring reality.
  • Think UK Muslim child rape stories couldn’t possibly get any more creepy or depressing? A gang in Croydon targeted Down Syndrome girls. (Hat tip: JihadWatch.)
  • Is Obama hindering the fight against Boko Haram because he favors the Muslim Nigerian Presidential candidate over the Christian one?
  • Harry Reid to retire from Senate. That hissing sound you hear is the air rushing out of Democrats’ chances to retake the senate in 2016… (Hat tip: Jim Geraghty.)
  • Speaking of Democrats and the Senate, there are bruising primary battles heating up up between the party’s corrupt wing and the party’s insane wing. (Sure, National Journal uses the words “pragmatic liberal” and “progressive,” but we all know what they mean.) (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Of course Ted Cruz can win.
  • It doesn’t hurt that he’s running against corporate welfare.
  • Cruz set out a fundraising goal of raising $1 million the first week of his campaign. he did that in just over a day and has already hit $2 million.
  • Different jobs, different perks. If you work at a high tech start-up, you may get free snacks and catered meals. If you work at the DEA, you might get orgies with prostitutes paid for by drug lords.
  • An early leader for Mother of the Year.
  • A tale of two rapes, one that didn’t happen the media hyped, and one that did the media ignored.
  • Judging from the comments in this Slashdot thread, techies are getting tired of frivolous Social Justice Warrior lawsuits.
  • Since that was a mostly very depressing roundup of news, here’s a Golden Retriever puppy sliding down a ramp.

    LinkSwarm for March 6, 2105

    Friday, March 6th, 2015

    Welcome to Friday! With so much being written about Hillary Clinton’s secret email server (well, secret to mere peasants like you and me, if not foreign governments…) and the King v. Burwell ObamaCare hearings, I didn’t include anything on them in this LinkSwarm. Maybe later…

  • Egyptian-born imam called for Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s death for defaming Islam. Does the Department of Justice: A.) Seek to deport him, B.) Investigate his ties to terrorism, or C.) Hire him to teach Islam in prison? (Hat tip: Jihad Watch.)
  • The Syrian rebel group Harakat al-Hazm, the last “moderate” group backed by the White House, disbands and joins the jihadists. Another towering Obama/Clinton/Kerry foreign policy triumph!
  • So the forces trying to retake Tikrit from the Islamic State are Iranian-led Shia militias?
  • Hillary Clinton’s foreign payola wasn’t just illegal, it was unconstitutional:

    The Washington Post reported last week that the tax-exempt foundation run by Bill and Hillary Clinton accepted money from seven foreign governments while Hillary served as U.S. Secretary of State (it’s unclear how much foreign money the organization accepted while Hillary was a U.S. Senator). Super shady, right? It’s worse than that, though, because Article I, Section 9 of the U.S. Constitution actually bans foreign payola for U.S. officials.

    The constitutional ban on foreign cash payments to U.S. officials is known as the Emoluments Clause and originated from Article VI of the Articles of Confederation. The purpose of the clause was to prevent foreign governments from buying influence in the U.S. by paying off U.S. government officials. Here’s the text of the clause:

    No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.

  • Ted Cruz participated in a discussion with Elie Wiesel on the dangers of letting Iran obtain nuclear weapons. But what would Elie Wiesel know about attempts to exterminate Jews?
  • Obama’s greatest accomplishment is kicking people out of the workforce. Well, at least domestically…
  • The New York Observer has a hotline to the Kremlin
  • Egypt declares Hamas a terrorist organization.
  • Maryland Democratic Senator Barbara Mikulski to retire. (Hat tip: Moe Lane.)
  • Chicago’s credit rating slashed. That’s what happens when you spend like drunken sailors. Or, worse yet, Californians.
  • Via Borepatch, an entire blog dedicated to improvised arms.
  • The Top 10 GOP Donors in Texas.
  • Science shows that fracking is not responsible for earthquakes in the DFW area.
  • Guy decides to leave civilization behind and start his own Utopia. It turns out exactly as any rational observers would expect.
  • Tweet:

  • The Llamas With Hats saga is now complete.

  • That Was Quick

    Monday, February 16th, 2015

    Yesterday: The Islamic State releases a video in which they beheaded 21 Egyptian Copts in Libya. (Libya being the Obama foreign policy masterstroke that just keeps stroking.) Egyptian leader Sisi vowed revenge.

    It didn’t take long in coming.

    Today Egyptian planes hit ISIS targets in Derna, Sirte and Ben Jawad, in coordination with Libya’s own government.

    So while Obama dithers and moves forward with plans to do just enough to keep reporters from asking him about ISIS, Jordan and Egypt have both carried out quick retaliatory strikes against ISIS.

    At this point ISIS has managed to alienate almost all the other countries in the Middle East, and yet we see no signs that Obama or his State Department have forged an effective coalition among them to crush ISIS. Evidently he feels it’s more important to appease Iran and chase a chimerical Israeli-Palestinian peace treaty than to keep a radical Islamist terrorist state from metastasizing throughout the region.

    It seems that Obama’s grand role in history is to make George W. Bush look like a foreign policy genius by comparison…

    “Arab civilization, such as we knew it, is all but gone.”

    Sunday, September 21st, 2014

    That’s the headline on this Hisham Melhem piece on the comprehensive failure of the entire Arab world.

    The jihadists of the Islamic State, in other words, did not emerge from nowhere. They climbed out of a rotting, empty hulk—what was left of a broken-down civilization. They are a gruesome manifestation of a deeper malady afflicting Arab political culture, which was stagnant, repressive and patriarchal after the decades of authoritarian rule that led to the disastrous defeat in the 1967 war with Israel. That defeat sounded the death knell of Arab nationalism and the resurgence of political Islam, which projected itself as the alternative to the more secular ideologies that had dominated the Arab republics since the Second World War. If Arab decline was the problem, then “Islam is the solution,” the Islamists said—and they believed it.

    At their core, both political currents—Arab nationalism and Islamism—are driven by atavistic impulses and a regressive outlook on life that is grounded in a mostly mythologized past. Many Islamists, including Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood (the wellspring of such groups)—whether they say it explicitly or hint at it—are still on a ceaseless quest to resurrect the old Ottoman Caliphate. Still more radical types—the Salafists—yearn for a return to the puritanical days of Prophet Muhammad and his companions. For most Islamists, democracy means only majoritarian rule, and the rule of sharia law, which codifies gender inequality and discrimination against non-Muslims.

    And let’s face the grim truth: There is no evidence whatever that Islam in its various political forms is compatible with modern democracy.

    A few pieces of Melhem’s piece are erroneous: “As terrorist organizations, al Qaeda and Islamic State are different from the Muslim Brotherhood, a conservative movement that renounced violence years ago, although it did dabble with violence in the past.” That’s only because the Egypt’s military forced them to refrain from large-scale violence on pain of death. We saw how quickly this restraint was cast aside when Morsi assumed power. The only differences between al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood are of degree, tactical choice, and certain Islamic Eschatological doctrinal differences as to exactly what sort of oppressive Islamic theocracy imposing Sharia law are the ideal end-state.

    But those flaws aside, it’s still an admirably clear-eyed distillation of the horrific, bloody, dysfunctional nature of the Arab world. Read the whole thing.

    LinkSwarm for January 17, 2014

    Friday, January 17th, 2014

    Welcome to your complimentary Friday LinkSwarm. I steal collect these from all over, including Ace of Spades HQ, Instapundit, Twitter, Facebook, and a dozen other places

  • Really, is there any book that screams “love story” like George Orwell’s 1984?
  • Reminder: North Korea is still an unmitigated communist hellhole. Not that anyone whose name isn’t Dennis Rodman has forgotten…
  • More people in Illinois sign up for concealed carry than ObamaCare. That’s so delicious I might have to rerun it for the next ObamaCare and gun news roundups…
  • Insurers say they’re just fine and dandy with ObamaCare subsidies.
  • ObamaCare cast pall of gloom over Democratic attempts to take the House. Now if only I could figure out where I placed my nanoscale violin…
  • Jonah Goldberg further explores the theme:

    In 2009, retiring Arkansas representative Marion Berry presciently warned that Obamacare was setting up the Democrats for a huge defeat in the 2010 midterms, just like “Hillarycare” had led to a loss of 54 House seats in 1994. Obama scoffed at such concerns. According to Berry, the president told him, “Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was you’ve got me.” Republicans went on to win 63 House seats and six Senate seats. It was the largest swing in the House since 1938. So I guess the difference was him.

  • Liberal New York Times editor wonders why cancer patients can’t just hurry up and die.
  • Retiring congressman Jim Moran: Scumbag.
  • Compared to the Obama Administration, Chris Christie is a rank amateur in the vindictiveness Olympics.
  • “If the current president is making a mess of everything and almost no one is being held accountable, isn’t that a bigger story?”
  • Every so often. the New York Times publishes a lifestyle story whose entire purpose seems to be to make you hate New Yorkers. Today’s example Left-wing yuppie tells how capitalism (in the form of her failing business) made her start stealing stuff.
  • Obama tells Senate Democrats that he’s going to make John Boehner his bitch on illegal alien amnesty.
  • Ted Cruz is America’s most efficient Senator, while Rand Paul ties for most effective.
  • Calling all Jews, calling all Jews. Calling all Jews, calling all Jews. (Via Ace)
  • It occurs to me that people younger or older than a certain edge (“My lawn! Off it!”) may have no idea what I’m riffing on, so here’s the reference:

  • 100,000 government employees escape union control.
  • Obama (wait for it) gives a speech, claiming that the solution is (wait for it) bigger government. (Save this sentence, and you’ll find that you can use it over and over again the next three years…)
  • Michael Totten on Syria: “Today we have a near-zero chance of a non-horrible outcome.”
  • How the American Studies Association anti-Israel boycott breaks the law.
  • Baltic Dry Index collapsing?
  • I think I know what the next Alamo Draft House the Obama Administration has no serious scandals. It’s like that Monty Python skit where the British naval officer is denying cannibalism while the guy next to him is munching on a human leg.

    I am heartened to see that not a single commenter supports his absurdist whitewash.

  • Is Egypt getting ready to take the wood to Hamas?
  • German children taken from parents because they might be exposed to incorrect thought. Nazi Germany? Communist East Germany? Try today.
  • “Socialism is the anti-Semitism of intellectuals.”
  • LinkSwarm for November 18, 2013

    Monday, November 18th, 2013

    Some links to start your week with, ObamaCare still looming as topic one:

  • Chao before Congress: ObamaCare is hunky dory! Chao in internal memo the day before: we are so farked!
  • Over four million Americans have their policies cancelled thanks to ObamaCare.
  • Less than 50,000 sign up for ObamaCare.
  • One of the Democratic Senators running as hard as she can away from ObamaCare is Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu. Too bad she already embraced 100% accountability for it.
  • Race-baiting provided a shield that allowed Obama to fail.
  • And remember that calling Obama’s critics racist was a deliberate strategy by MSM members wanting to boost and protect Obama.
  • Don’t expect Obama to bounce back.
  • So is Politico actually covering the dysfunction within the Obama cabinet, or are they trying to shield a favorite from the stink of failure engulfing same?
  • A look back at Communist genocide in Ukraine.
  • Fitch gives Chicago bonds three steps, yes they gave them a three step cut toward the floor.
  • Michael Totten: “The case for walking away from Egypt and dusting our hands off is sound.”
  • Antisemitism getting worse in Europe says notorious Zionist shill, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights.
  • Islamists in Nigeria doing what they do best: murder children.
  • Sex crime investigator arrested for sex crime with a minor. That’s really cutting out the middleman…
  • How the holy hell can Amtrack lose one BILLION dollars on food service? You could feed Ethiopia on that!
  • Dwight has an EarthQuest update.
  • Julian Castro to force streetcars down the throats of San Antonians despite votes against them.
  • Another super-genus criminal. Just click the link and look at the pics.
  • Egypt: Dispatches From the Continuing Crackdown

    Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

    There’s a lot of Egyptian news going on, much of it of the classic Middle East Problem Solving variety. In particular, the Egyptian government seems to be doing most of the “solving,” so expect to see some 50-100 members of the Muslim Brotherhood develop acute lead poisoning every day for the foreseeable future.

    Beyond that, I can’t tell you. My knowledge of Egypt is basically that of a one-eyed, myopic man who can at least see shapes in strong sunlight. Here’s an Egypt news roundup in mini-LinkSwarm form.

  • The Muslim Brotherhood’s supreme leader is arrested. That’s going to be a big blow to them, and probably indicates the Egyptian military is fairly confident they’ll not only win the current test of wills with the Brothers, but win it decisively.
  • The Muslim Brotherhood isn’t dead yet, but they are severely weakened. “The army seems determined to decapitate the Middle East’s oldest and arguably most resilient Islamist movement, to prevent it from preparing a political comeback.”
  • Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss?
  • The Coptic Kristallnacht.
  • Hosni Mubarak has been found innocent and should soon be released. Don’t expect to see him return to power, as the military opposition to his turning the country into a dynastic fiefdom by anointing his son Gamal as his successor is the reason they let him get toppled in the first place.
  • Egypt’s burning, Obama’s golfing.
  • Is Obama secretly suspending aid to the Egyptian government? If so, he’s once again superbly crafted a policy to please no one and accomplish nothing.
  • Thomas Sowell on Obama’s (and America’s) illusions about democratizing the Middle East.
  • “The President and his team have been taken in by two very old American mistakes about the rest of the world. One is to confuse the end of history with the morning news. The other is to exaggerate America’s importance to the rest of the world. ”
  • Evidently the rest of the Arab world is pissed at Qatar (and Qatar-owned Al Jazeera) for backing the Muslim Brotherhood.
  • I’ve been seeing a lot of very dubious reports about Obama secretly giving the Muslim Brotherhood $8 billion. Look, as much as I think Obama is an incompetent failure whose Administration has played footsie with the Brotherhood, I don’t buy this for a minute. Setting aside the why, not even President Trillion can conjure $8 billion from thin air to hand out on his own.