Posts Tagged ‘Jihad’

LinkSwarm for February 23, 2018

Friday, February 23rd, 2018

Another week in which I had zero free time! Enjoy a LinkSwarm, and hopefully I’ll have something a little more substantial next week.

  • “Officials Identify More Rotherham Victims, Number Up to 1,510.”
  • Nancy Pelosi wants you to know that keeping more of your own paycheck is “unpatriotic.” (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Speaking of Pelosi, just how did she triple her net worth during the financial crisis?
  • “President Donald Trump’s immigration hard-liners proved [last] Thursday it is possible to win even when the outcome of a battle is, on paper, a draw.”
  • On a per-capita basis, the United States doesn’t even rank in the top 10 of mass shooting fatalities.
  • “Florida Shooting Survivor Claims CNN Denied His Questions on School Safety, Provided Scripted Questions.” CNN: Potemkin Village media.
  • The experience of Israel proves that the NRA is right on school shootings.
  • “Republicans now sympathize with Israel (as opposed to the Palestinians) by a whopping 52-point margin over Democrats—79 percent to 27 percent—the greatest spread between the two parties in the last 40 years. Republicans have never been more favorably disposed toward Israel, while for Democrats, the opposite holds true.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Remember: When a powerful female liberal Democratic politician sleeps with a married subordinate, it’s different. Because feminism. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Also:

    Within months of taking office, Mayor Megan Barry recommended the adult daughter of the head of her security detail — the man with whom she later admitted to having an affair — be hired for a job in the city’s legal department.

    The daughter got the job.

    The position as an entry-level city attorney was the first newly created job in Nashville’s legal department in two years. It was not part of the existing budget. Barry approved the new job opening. No other candidate was considered.

  • “Former Secretary of State Colin Powell said too many young people do not qualify for military service due in part to obesity and criminal records,” and being too stupid to pass the ASVAB. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Another way in which President Donald Trump is like other recent Republican Presidents: ignoring deficits.
  • Austin experiences a significant uptick in violent crime since 2013.
  • Vox lays off 50 people. I didn’t know they even had 50 people to lay off…
  • Payoffs to college basketball players are widespread.
  • School enrollment at Evergreen State College drops 18.5%. How’s that “All Social Justice Warrior, all the time” format working out for you?
  • Billy Graham, RIP.
  • Boston Dynamics teaches robot to fight back against humans. Joke that follows should be: A.)”, find Sarah Conner,” B.) “What could possibly go wrong?”, or C.) “I for one welcome our new robot overlords!”
  • UK Kentucky Fried Chickens running out of chicken. Verily the endtimes are upon us…
  • LinkSwarm for February 16, 2018

    Friday, February 16th, 2018

    This has probably been my busiest February on record. Enjoy a complimentary Friday LinkSwarm, try the waitress and tip the veal:

  • “It’s doubtful you can find a more succinct example of TDS than a seemingly inebriated Democrat Senator asking the aggregate intelligence apparatus, during a public session of congress, to give specific details of U.S. covert intelligence efforts to thwart Russian, Chinese and North Korean cyber-warfare.” Democratic Senator Jack Reed continues to long, proud tradition of questionable Rhode Island political figures…
  • In January, the first month under the Trump tax cuts, the federal government pulls in record tax revenues and runs a surplus. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • “The Genius Of Trump’s Food Stamp Proposal: You’re Not Supposed To Like Being On Welfare.”
  • Michael Leeden thinks the Islamic Republic of Iran is doomed. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Reminder: Everytown’s “school shooting statistics” are pure fabrication.
  • Democrats Fleeing Blue States, Infecting Red States With Failed Liberal Disease.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Not only are a new German frigate’s computer systems FUBARed, but the ship can’t even float right.
  • Wired writer doesn’t understand the difference between “Islamist” and “Muslim.”
  • “In Wake Of Corruption Trials, Maryland Ponders Disbanding Baltimore Police Department.”
  • For Travis County Sheriff Sally Hernandez, illegal aliens are more important than bullet-proof vests for officers.
  • Asian student at Harvard discovers that identity politics is a dead end.
  • Stop Trying To Shove Women Into STEM.” “There’s this big push to get girls into STEM — while there’s no commensurate push to get women into oil rig work, no complaints that there aren’t enough women hanging off the back of garbage trucks.” Also:

    We’ve recently found that countries renowned for gender equality show some of the largest sex differences in interest in and pursuit of STEM degrees, which is not only inconsistent with an oppression narrative, it is positive evidence against it. Consider that Finland excels in gender equality, its adolescent girls outperform boys in science, and it ranks near the top in European educational performance. With these high levels of educational performance and overall gender equality, Finland is poised to close the sex differences gap in STEM. Yet, Finland has one of the world’s largest sex differences in college degrees in STEM fields. Norway and Sweden, also leading in gender equality rankings, are not far behind. This is only the tip of the iceberg, as this general pattern of increasing sex differences with national increases in gender equality is found throughout the world.

  • Moron thinks poor people are too stupid to cook food.
  • Do you need carbs for Thyroid health? Science says no.
  • Cool. (Hat tip: Borepatch.)
  • Texas Democratic state Rep. Dawnna Dukes’ campaign is more than $700,000 in debt due to legal fees from the (now dropped) felony charges against her. And she’s running for reelection.
  • Bill Crider, RIP.
  • Setting ablaze a giant matchsphere.
  • Every book I bought in the last half of last year.
  • Israel Hits Multiple Targets in Syria

    Tuesday, February 13th, 2018

    Here’s a story you may have missed (I certainly did) over the weekend.

    In summary:

  • Iran sends drone from base in Syria through Jordan and into Israeli airspace.
  • Israeli Apache helicopter shoots down drone.
  • Israel launches surgical strike against drone base of origin near Homs, Syria.
  • Syrians manage to shoot down Israeli F-16 (pilots successfully eject and land in Israel), evidently the first successful enemy downing of an Israeli aircraft since 2006.
  • “Israel carried out a large-scale attack against 12 targets in Syria, including three Syrian SA-5 and SA-17 air defense batteries and four other Iranian military targets.”
  • The New York Times has a piece up discussing the situation that runs the gamut from “commonplace” to “tendentious” to “wrong.” In particular, the assertion that Israel can’t prevent Iran from establishing a conventional force presence in Syria is probably wrong; I suspect Israel can more easily pay for and replace expended material than Iran can, especially with the latter beset by extended domestic unrest. Even more unsupported is the assertion that Russia must “pick a side” in the conflict. I’m pretty sure the Russians have no desire to tangle militarily with another highly-trained nuclear power in a peripheral theater of conflict in a move that would doubtlessly provoke an American response, and Assad has no leverage by which to compel Russia to do any more for him than they’re already doing against the remnants of the Free Syrian Army and the Islamic State. “Shoot down some Israeli planes, or I won’t let you fight for me anymore!”

    Iran is establishing bases in Syria for essentially irrational dick-measuring reasons, i.e. to be able to say it’s doing more to oppose “the Zionist Entity” than any other country in the Muslim ummah, as well as support Hezbollah and Assad’s Syria, two of it’s most important clients/allies in the Shia/Sunni civil war.

    Iran would not be so bold had it’s sugar daddy Obama not lifted sanctions and showered it with cash for a meaningless agreement. The world will be living with the baleful consequences of the Obama administration’s feckless policies for a long time to come.

    LinkSwarm for February 9, 2018

    Friday, February 9th, 2018

    Have relatives coming into town, so the LinkSwarm may be a tad light today.

  • A farewell to death panels.
  • Nancy Pelosi stages a breathtakingly pointless filibuster while Sen. Chuck Schumer is selling DACA out. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • With Enemies Like This, Donald Trump Doesn’t Need Friends.”

    So, the Washington Post says that Donald Trump wants to honor the military with a parade, which the Trump-haters inform us is the worst thing that ever was because it’s Donald Trump who wants to honor the military with a parade. The very day the Democrats decided that they should make fun of Trump’s physical disqualification for military service – Democrats were pretending to think not serving is bad that morning – the Donkeys also decided they needed to spazz out about honoring our troops.

    Whap! That’s the sound of the Democrats stepping on another rake.

    Is a parade a good idea? A bad idea? Irrelevant! It’s a hilarious idea, because when this idea erupted on social media, it was absolutely certain that the liberals would immediately take a position that required them to say, “No, we should totally not honor our troops.”

    Also:

    Every day, the Democrats seem intent on stepping on a new rake. The tax bill comes out, and the Democrats’ promise that those of us not already dead from Trump pulling us out of the Paris Climate Change Grift were going to be dead from getting more money back in our paychecks.

    Whap! Rake! Because working folks keeping their own money is bad – for Democrat prospects.

    Then a bunch of companies start giving bonuses to their employees, which the Dems pooh-pooh.

    Whap! Rake! Because money not dispensed by Uncle Sucker doesn’t count or something.

    And then Nancy Pelosi, the gift who keeps on gibbering, announces again and again that a grand is just “crumbs.”

    Whap! Rake! Way to remind us why everyone hates San Francisco limo libs, Richie Witch.

    With powerful midterm messages like, “We intend to repeal the tax reform bill that gave you Normals a few more bucks,” and “More illegal aliens or you’re racist!” the Democrats are a shoo-in to hold their House seats in Manhattan, Marin County, and Chicago!

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • PolitiFact’s idea of “balance”: a crazy Democrat and an anti-Trump Republican.
  • When it comes to flattering Elizabeth Warren and pampering liberal federal bureaucrats, your money is no object.
  • NYPD accused of stealing $30,000 worth of booze. The De Blasio administration really does seem to want to return NYC to it’s pre-Guliani hellhole days. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Speaking of law enforcement abuse: “FBI told state police not to wear body cameras for 2016 stop of refuge occupation leaders.” The Obama Administration obviously had it in for the Bundy family. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • “Now O.J. is pointing the gun at his own head!”
  • With Cairo’s approval, Israeli planes are bombing Islamic State targets in Egypt. Win/win. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Michael Totten offers additional details, including the fact that what should be a straight-forward, logical alliance is impaired by the virulent anti-Semitism of Egypt’s state-controlled media.
  • James Brown’s estate does not feel good. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Interesting story from a few years ago on extreme caving. (Hat tip: Ann Althouse.)
  • Notes from Massad Ayoob’s Use of Deadly Force Instructor class.
  • Happy ending.
  • Bailey RIP.

  • Abandoning the Palestinian Delusion

    Tuesday, January 30th, 2018

    Scott Adams said that Donald Trump’s election was going to change a lot of things about the way we view the world. One of the things it seems to be killing is the delusion that the current Palestinian ruling class is any way, shape or form a “partner for peace.”

    President Trump has threatened to withhold all aid to the Palestinians until they engage in peace talks with Israel.

    “That money is not going to them unless they sit down and negotiate peace, because I can tell you that Israel does want to make peace, and they’re going to have to want to make peace too or we’re going to have nothing to do with it any longer.”

    Despite all the gnashing of teeth and wailing in outrage from American leftists that President Trump’s decision to finally follow the law and move America’s embassy to Jerusalem would derail any peace talks and spark widespread Palestinian violence. That didn’t happen. Instead, just as President Trump and many conservative observers predicted, the Arab world started to move toward more realistic goals:

    Last week in Istanbul, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) recognized East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine. They made the announcement with a barrage of angry rhetoric, of course. Israel is a “racist” state, and the Trump administration’s recognition earlier this month of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is “an attack on the historical, legal, natural and national rights of the Palestinian people, a deliberate undermining of all peace efforts, an impetus to extremism and terrorism, and a threat to international peace and security.”

    Look past the bombast at the main point. By recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, the OIC is effectively ceding West Jerusalem to the Israelis and implicitly recognizing it as Israel’s capital.

    Snip.

    Plenty of Palestinians want the conflict to end and will grudgingly live alongside Israel even if it means giving up the dream of sovereignty over the entire land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean. According to a survey published in August, 53 percent of Israelis and 52 percent of Palestinians support a two-state solution.

    At least some in the Palestinian National Authority leadership are among that 52 percent. If President Mahmoud Abbas—who is currently finishing up his twelfth year of a four-year term—could push a button that magically created a Palestinian state that roughly corresponds to the 1967 armistice lines and leads to an enduring and stable era of peace with the Israelis, he would probably push it.

    He has never agreed to peace terms with Israel, though, nor is he even open to serious peace talks, because a huge number of Palestinians—especially the armed total rejectionists in Hamas—would brand him a traitor. The dream, the fantasy, of destroying Israel hasn’t died yet. The notion that the so-called Zionist Entity is an ultimately temporary imposition remains all-too powerful in the Palestinian national narrative. Peace is not yet nigh, and Mahmoud Abbas knows it.

    Even the two-staters would blow a gasket if Abbas were to sign a peace treaty and concede what the Israelis would force him to concede—no “right of return” for Palestinian “refugees” who have never even set foot in Israel, the West Bank, or Gaza; and Jewish sovereignty over the Western Wall. Odds are high that Abbas would be killed or driven into exile and that yet another war between the Israelis and Palestinians would break out soon after.

    Israel’s permanence needs to be part of the story Palestinians tell themselves about their place in the world and in history, and right now, it’s not, at least not among enough of them. The Palestinians, as a whole, aren’t likely to be honest with themselves about this before the wider Islamic world is honest about it first and pressures them to say yes and build the sovereign state that is actually possible rather than continue to pine and sometimes fight for a castle in the air.

    Most of the Arab states have quietly set the conflict aside, but they’re afraid to speak truth to the Palestinians, afraid to be branded betrayers, afraid to risk popular wrath and go the way of Egypt’s assassinated Anwar Sadat, afraid to apply the kind of pressure on Palestinian negotiators that ultimately will be necessary. In an alternate universe, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a post-Soviet-style frozen conflict, but in this one, the Syrian and Iranian regimes keep poking it with a stick by funneling guns, money and even missiles to terrorist armies like Hamas and Hezbollah.

    That’s why it matters that the OIC just implicitly recognized West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. They didn’t say it in a way that will get them in trouble back home, but the likes of Hamas and Hezbollah absolutely took note that the OIC thinks only East Jerusalem, and not the whole thing, belongs to the Palestinians. They would not have done this had the United States not done it first. It’s a small step, sure, so don’t go popping any champagne corks just yet, but it’s still a step.

    Combined with other positive developments, the Middle East has improved more in one year with President Donald Trump in office than eight with Barack Obama.

    Whether America’s increasingly Palestinian-phillic Democratic Party will give up their delusional view of them as saintly victims is another question. Signs point to no. Social Justice Warrior-style victimhood identity politics increasingly makes up the ideological core of the Democratic Party, and Palestinians are the victimest. This is the real reason why Democratic support for Israel is at an all-time low. Hatred for Israel is a core-value of the SJW campus left, and from there it has seeped into the heart of the Democratic Party.

    That victimhood identity politics is why Democrats have to pretend the likes of Hamas and the PLO are suitable “partners for peace” and why they’re so congenitally soft on jihad. Conservatives want to destroy jihadists, jihadist sanctuaries, and any government supporting jihadists. Liberals want to address “root causes,” which amounts to dumping still more money on corrupt Arab kleptocrats and pretending that if Israel were suddenly wiped off the map, conflict in the Middle East would magically cease to exist.

    The Iran Deal is precisely the sort of delusional bullshit liberals try when you leave them running a foreign policy without adult supervision.

    Finally, a bit off topic from this essay, but tying in this and yesterday’s post, here’s Ed Driscoll Roger Simon pointing out that Democrats are acting like Palestinians when it comes to immigration reform:

    Just as the Palestinians twenty-five years and four significant offers after Oslo have demonstrated they really don’t want a two-state solution with the Israelis, Democrats have now revealed they don’t want to solve the U.S.e immigration problem.

    As with the Palestinians, it’s all a shell game.

    Donald Trump just offered the Dems an agreement on DACA that gives two million “Dreamers” a pathway to full citizenship after 10-12 years — something not even done by Barack Obama! — and the Dems didn’t even want to discuss the proposal. All that happened was their increasingly unhinged minority leader screamed Trump was “making America safe for white people!”

    Paragraph on Pelosi’s mental state omitted.

    Pelosi revealed herself to be a repellent racist… or racialist (someone who plays the race card no matter what). More importantly, the Democratic Party unmasked themselves as not all that interested in the “Dreamers” as people. They just want to make the Republicans look, well, racist and lose elections. Otherwise they would be jumping up and down for this proposal.

    Call this “projection politics.” Play it long enough and you turn into the very thing you claim the other is. Of course, the Democrats have been playing this so long they really could have been called the Race Party years ago. Other than racial and sexual name calling, they appear to have no policies whatsoever, except opposition to the current administration, no matter what that administration proposes.

    Sabre-Rattling Over Indo-Pakistani Nuclear War

    Monday, January 15th, 2018

    Forget that false missile alarm in Hawaii. The biggest chance for someone dropping The Big One this week comes not from crazy North Korea, but from the long-simmering Indo-Pakistani conflict, where two nuclear-armed nations are once again trading shots:

    India and Pakistan exchanged gunfire Monday in the disputed Kashmir region, killing several soldiers on both sides. Each side blamed the other starting the altercation, giving its own figures for the number of dead.

    India claimed its troops killed seven Pakistani soldiers, while one Indian soldier died. Pakistan said four of its soldiers died in Indian firing, while its forces killed three in retaliatory fire.

    India accuses Pakistan of sending militants across the border to carry out terrorist activities on its soil. Pakistan, on the other hand, accuses India of grave human rights violations in the part of Kashmir under Indian control, which has long faced a separatist movement.

    My guess is that both of these allegations are true, and that both Pakistan and India fairly ruthlessly suppress a number of different Kashmiri separatist groups, some of which are aligned with international jihadists.

    It doesn’t help that both nation’s military officers have been posturing in best “Come at me, bro!” fashion:

    Indian Army Chief General Bipin Rawat said Friday his military was ready to call Pakistan’s “nuclear bluff” and carry out aggressive military operations across the [Line of Control].

    “We will call the (nuclear) bluff of Pakistan. If we will have to really confront the Pakistanis, and a task is given to us, we are not going to say we cannot cross the border because they have nuclear weapons. We will have to call their nuclear bluff,” Gen. Rawat warned, responding to a question during a press conference on the “possibility of Pakistan using its nuclear weapons in case the situation along the border deteriorates,” said the Hindustan Times.

    On Saturday, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif unleashed a Tweetstorm denouncing Rawat’s comments as “very irresponsible. Amounts to invitation for nuclear encounter. If that is what they desire, they are welcome to test our resolve. The general’s doubt would swiftly be removed, inshallah.”

    The threatening and irresponsible statement by the Indian Army Chief today is representative of a sinister mindset that has taken hold of India. Pakistan has demonstrated deterrence capability,” he tweeted.

    “These are not issues to be taken lightly. There must not be any misadventure based on miscalculation. Pakistan is fully capable of defending itself,” he added.

    The spokesperson of Pakistan’s Foreign Office Mohammad Faisal also criticised Gen. Rawat’s comments as very “irresponsible.” Further, the Pakistani army said its nuclear weapons have deterred India from launching another full-scale conventional war, as both nuclear superpowers are playing chicken.

    Escalating the war of words, Pakistan army spokesman Asif Ghafoor said on state-run television, “should they wish to test our resolve, they may try and see it for themselves. We have a credible nuclear capability, exclusively meant for threat from east. But we believe it’s a weapon of deterrence, not a choice.”

    The Line of Control (LoC) refers to a heavily militarized zone in Jammu and Kashmir, in which it splits some of the India-Pakistani border. In 2017 alone, the Indian Army killed 138 Pakistani troops in tactical and retaliatory operations along the LoC. In the same period, 28 Indian soldiers perished. In late December, we reported on an intense battle between Indian and Pakistani forces leaving 4 Indian troops dead, where it was believed that Pakistan was the aggressor.

    All this comes in the wake of the United States suspending most military aid to Pakistani over the continued presence of jihadi safe havens in the country.

    State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the suspension would remain in effect until Pakistan takes “decisive action” against the Taliban and Haqqani network, militant groups blamed for stoking violence in Afghanistan and prolonging a conflict that has become America’s longest war.

    “No partnership can survive a country’s harboring of militants and terrorists who target U.S. service members and officials,” Nauert said.

    Pakistan’s continued support for the Taliban is no surprise, given that the Pakistani ISI created the Taliban over two decades ago.

    India’s Hindu nationalist government of Narendra Modi is not exactly an exercise in enlightened virtue, either, but his government is fighting rather than backing jihadis, and he’s had some small but notable reforms, such as warming relations with Israel.

    My guess is that all this sabre-rattling is for deterrence and domestic consumption rather than a sign of looming wide-scale conflict or actual nuclear war. Having just been put on notice by its primary arms supplier, I doubt Pakistan is eager to go to war with India over Kashmir just right now.

    Liberals have been whinging that President Donald Trump has brought back “the specter of nuclear war.” That specter never went away, Democrats just ignored it for a quarter-century…

    Pat Condell on Britain’s Hate Speech Police

    Sunday, January 7th, 2018

    “Hate speech is free speech that hurts people’s feelings. It’s illegal in Britain because we don’t have a First Amendment to protect us from this kind of arbitrary police state law and the police, for reasons best known to themselves, pay special attention to Internet hate speech. They’re always telling us how seriously they take it. It’s almost as if they prioritize it over real crime for some kind of ideological reason, because it seems they’re all over social media combing out thought criminals like head lice.”

    “It seems that you’re as likely to be arrested in Britain today for being abusive on Twitter as you are for gang raping a child. Maybe even more so.”

    Also this:

    “Recently on Channel 4 News we heard that the grooming gangs in Rotherham are still operating openly for all to see, including the police. And they wonder why they’re losing trust and respect.”

    The Religion of Peace and the UK progressive thought police organization “Common Purpose” puts in an appearance as well.

    Condell also has a rant called “A Word To The Criminal Migrant.” Unfortunately, due to the oppressive atmosphere of progressive censorship, YouTube has made it so that I can no longer embed it here, so click on that as well.

    Bosch Fawstin Suspended by Twitter

    Wednesday, January 3rd, 2018

    Artist Bosch Fawstin, the winner of the Draw Mohammed Contest in Garland (over which two jihadis managed to dirtnap themselves) has been suspended by Twitter.

    Says Fawstin:

    Twitter just suspended my account this morning, with no specific reason given to me besides their claim that I violated their rules for “hateful conduct”. I have been on twitter for a number of years, and I was able to earn the following of 13, 500 people. I really enjoy the platform and the interaction I get on it, outside of the death threats, which I’ve received over the years on Twitter, but which Twitter didn’t always deem objectionable, after I reported them. There are at least two individuals who’ve threatened me on Twitter who still have active Twitter accounts.

    I followed Fawstin on Twitter, and I never saw him post anything that could be construed as “hate speech” by a rational, neutral observer. An ex-Muslim, Fawstin was extremely critical of Islam, and it’s hard to believe that he wasn’t suspended merely for being critical of Islam, or for expressing his free speech rights in drawing Mohammed.

    Once again, Twitter appears to be using the fig leaf of “hate speech” to purge conservatives.

    Edited to Add:

    Iran Roundup for January 2, 2018

    Tuesday, January 2nd, 2018

    Widespread protests against the corrupt theocratic regime continue across Iran, so here’s a roundup of news. Here’s a liveblog on the protests, courtesy of Austin Bay at Instapundit.

  • This piece makes the case that Iran’s corrupt theocratic government has used up all its remaining legitimacy:

    As with the Soviet Union in its last days, the Islamic Republic can no longer appeal to its ideals; it relies only on its security services for survival. That is deadly for a theocracy, by definition an ideological construct. Ideological authoritarian states need a vision of the future by which their enforcers can condone their own violence. The theocracy’s vast patronage system will not cure this crisis of legitimacy. In many ways, Mr. Rouhani was the ruling clergy’s last gasp, a beguiling mullah who could enchant Westerners while offering Iranians some hope. That hope has vanished.

  • “US gives Israel go-ahead to kill powerful Iranian general.” The would be the same Quds force commander Qassem Soleimani Obama saved three years ago in pursuit of his precious, asinine Iran deal. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • How President Donald Trump saw the Iranian protests coming. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Some pessimism about protestor’s chances:

    In Iran, the obstacles to success are daunting. Whereas most Middle Eastern countries are ruled by secular autocrats focused on repressing primarily Islamist opposition, Iran is an Islamist autocracy focused on repressing secular opposition. This dynamic—unarmed, unorganized, leaderless citizens seeking economic dignity and pluralism, versus a heavily armed, organized, rapacious ruling theocracy that espouses martyrdom—is not a recipe for success.

    And yet, against this inauspicious backdrop, Iran’s mushrooming anti-government protests—although so far much smaller in scale than the country’s 2009 uprising—have been unprecedented in their geographic scope and intensity. They began December 28 in Mashhad, a Shiite pilgrimage city often considered a regime stronghold, with protesters chanting slogans like “leave Syria alone, think about us.” They soon spread to Qom, Iran’s holiest city, where protesters expressed nostalgia for Reza Shah, the 20th-century modernizing autocrat who ruthlessly repressed the clergy. They continued in provincial towns, with thousands chanting, “we don’t want an Islamic Republic” in Najafabad, “death to the revolutionary guards” in Rasht, and “death to the dictator” in Khoramabad. They’ve since spread to Tehran, and hundreds have been arrested, the BBC reported, citing Iranian officials.

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • Iran Charges Russia With Selling Out its Air Defense Secrets to Israel. The Islamic Republic says Russia sold codes to Israel that neutralize its air defenses.” Attacking your primary arms supplier, and your ally Syria’s effective air force, is a pretty desperate look. If true, it also means that America (and probably Saudi Arabia) have those codes as well… (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Obama toadies vs the Iranian people:

    In the US, former members of the Obama administration and the liberal media have determinedly downplayed the importance of the protests. They have insisted that President Donald Trump should stop openly supporting the protesters and so adopt former president Barack Obama’s policy of effectively siding with the Iranian regime against the Iranian people who seek its overthrow.

    These talking points have been pushed out into the media echo chamber by Obama’s former deputy national security adviser and strategic communications chief Ben Rhodes, his former national security adviser Susan Rice and former secretary of state John Kerry.

    Obama’s Middle East coordinator Philip Gordon stated them outright in an op-ed in The New York Times on Saturday. Gordon called on Trump “to keep quiet and do nothing” in response to the protests.

    In Gordon’s view, no matter how big their beef with the regime, the protesters hate the US more. And they really hate Trump.

    Gordon wrote, “Whatever Iranians think of their own government, they are unlikely to want as a voice for their grievances an American president who has relentlessly opposed economic relief for their country and banned them from traveling to the United States.”

    Just as Obama’s surrogates have repeated Gordon’s claims, so the Obama-supporting liberal media have gone out of their way to diminish the importance of the protests in their coverage of them and use Obama’s surrogates as their “expert” analysts to explain what is happening (or rather, distort what is happening) to their audiences.

    Obama administration officials have been so outspoken in their defense of the Iranian regime because they rightly view the prospect that the protesters will succeed in overthrowing the regime as a mortal threat to their legacy.

    Obama’s foreign policy rested on the assumption that the US was a colonialist, aggressive and immoral superpower. By their telling, the Iranians – like the Cubans and the Russians – were right to oppose the US due to its legacy of meddling in the internal affairs of other countries. This anti-American worldview informed the Obama administration’s conviction that it was incumbent on the US to make amends for its previous decades of foreign policy.

    Hence, Obama traveled the globe in 2009 and 2010 apologizing for the policies of his predecessors. Hence, Obama believed that the US had no moral right to stand with the Iranian people against the regime in the 2009 Green Revolution. As he saw it, anyone who stood with the US was no better than an Uncle Tom. Truly authentic foreign regimes were be definition anti-American. Since the Green Revolutionaries were begging for his support, by definition, they didn’t deserve it.

    Since the current wave on anti-regime protests began last Thursday, the liberal media have parroted the Obama alumni’s talking points because they feel that their war against Trump requires them to embrace Obama’s legacy just as they embraced his talking points and policies for eight years.

    After all, if Obama is not entirely infallible, then Trump cannot be entirely fallible. And if Trump may be partially right and Obama partially wrong, then their dispute may be a substantive rather than existential one. And so, the New York Times’ coverage of the most significant story in the world has deliberately distorted and downplayed events on the ground in Iran.

  • A relevant Twitter thread:

  • The Deafening Feminist Silence on Iran Protests

    Monday, January 1st, 2018

    Having implemented Sharia law, Theocratic Iran is one of the most repressive regimes in the world when it comes to women’s rights, and a wide variety of activities are prohibited to women simply because they are women.

    Now that widespread protests have broken out In Iran over the rejection of the Islamic Republic and greater rights for women, you might think that feminists organizations would be in the forefront of those clamoring for greater women’s rights.

    You would be wrong. They are, as usual, nattering on about the standard array of far-left causes having nothing to do with women’s rights.

    To drill down even further, I thought I would check the Twitter feeds of several prominent feminists. They too are silent on Iran:

    Once again, the unwillingness to speak out on Islam’s demonstrable treatment of women as second-class citizens has left American feminists with nothing to say about the most important woman’s rights struggle of the day. (That, and the Democratic Party’s insistence on defending Obama’s disasterous (and unconstitutional) Iran deal.)

    Feminism is only about “women’s rights” when they align with a far-left agenda.