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    Default U.S. Legacy of Extremism

    Iraq probes allegations of Marines' proselytizing

    Muslims angered by Christian verse printed on coins

    FALLUJAH, IRAQ — At the western entrance to Fallujah on Tuesday, Muamar Anad handed his residence badge to the U.S. Marines guarding the city. They checked to be sure that he was a city resident, and when they were done, Anad said, a Marine slipped a coin out of his pocket and put it in his hand.
    Out of fear, he accepted it, Anad said. When he was inside the city, the college student said, he looked at one side of the coin. "Where will you spend eternity?" it asked.

    On the other side it read, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16."

    "They are trying to convert us to Christianity," said Anad, a Sunni Muslim like most residents of this city in Anbar province. At home, he told his story, and his relatives echoed their disapproval: They'd been given the coins, too, he said.
    Fallujah, the scene of a bloody U.S. offensive against Sunni insurgents in 2004, has calmed and grown less hostile to American troops since residents turned against al-Qaida in Iraq, which had tried to force its brand of Islamist extremism on the population.

    Now residents are abuzz that some Americans whom they consider occupiers are acting as Christian missionaries. Residents said some Marines at the western entrance to their city have been passing out the coins for two days in what they call a "humiliating" attempt to convert them to Christianity.

    In the markets, people crowded around men with the coins, passing them to each other and asking in surprise, "Have you seen this?"

    In an e-mail, Rear Adm. Patrick Driscoll, a U.S. military spokesman, said "Iraq is investigating a report that U.S. military personnel in Fallujah handed out material that is religious and evangelical in nature. Local commanders are investigating since the military prohibits proselytizing any religion, faith or practices."

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    US marines in hot water over Christian coins in Iraq
    Date : May 30, 2008

    The US military said on Friday it was probing complaints that marines handed out coins inscribed with a verse from the Bible to a group of Sunni Muslims in Iraq, sparking outrage among local residents.

    It said a service member involved in the incident in the former flashpoint city of Fallujah west of Baghdad was removed from his duties on Thursday.

    "US forces initiated an investigation into reports that a coin with a Bible verse written in Arabic was distributed to Iraqi citizens as they passed through a Fallujah entry control point," the military said in a statement.

    "A coalition force service member was removed from his duties Thursday amid concerns from Fallujah's citizens regarding reports of inappropriate conduct."

    Residents of Fallujah, scene of one of the bloodiest post-invasion battles between insurgents and US forces in Iraq in 2004, said that marines had been doling out the token-like coins to residents to promote Christianity.

    The incident occurred less than than two weeks after a US soldier was removed from Iraq for using a Koran for target practice at a firing range near Baghdad and writing graffiti in the Muslim holy book.

    The incident sparked outrage from the Iraqi government of President Nuri al-Maliki and prompted an apology from US President George W. Bush. But it triggered protests that left several people dead in Afghanistan.

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    Navy Chaplain Ready to Convert Iraq to Christianity
    Iraq Occupation

    "A Navy chaplain who served in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom [sic] believes the civilian population of that country is ready for the gospel of Jesus Christ. Lieutenant Carey Cash was assigned to the First Battalion of the Fifth Marine Regiment during the opening months of the war.... Cash says the Iraqis seem burdened under Islam. He believes this creates an openness to Christianity, he says, 'in part because Islam, as a cultural motif, does oppress. And I think that says that one day, perhaps, a new day may dawn in that nation where the gospel can be proclaimed without fear of reprisal, and where it can liberate men, women, and children unlike they've ever known.' Despite the influence of Islam in Iraq, Cash says he finds there is great openness to Christianity there now, and he feels that believers currently serving in that country will have an even better opportunity to share their faith in the future." Will Americans ever stop deluding themselves about Islam?

    American Plans to Convert Iraq into Christianity
    • American Missionaries and Generals in the American Military are working together in order to convert Helpless Muslims in Iraq to Christianity. Many of these Missionaries which are Supported by the Bush Administration are from Evangelical Christian Groups Such as Southern Baptist Convention, World Help and other Evangelical Christian Organizations. They go into Iraq as aid workers in Disguise or as American Private Contractors working in Iraq. Many of these people have been given support and Protection from American Generals in Iraq by providing them Housings in Americans Bases in Iraq to work from. When ever the American Military goes into a Village or a Town in search and destroy Mission these missionaries follow them and hand out Pamphlets promoting Christianity and also Also Anti-islamic material to the helpless Muslims in Iraq. Many of them follow the American Military as well in their rutine Night raids where the American Soldiers Kills or detains Muslim males from the families, Iraq is a traditional Society and most of the Support a family recieves is from the Male, and once there is no Male gaurdian for the Family the family does not have a chance for survival. Many Muslim Women and families are being taken advantagae of by these American christians, since they provide them with food and Shelter or Money in Exchange for the Bible and Christianity the most Vulnerable of these families are Muslim women with children whos husbands and Sons have been killed or been detained by the Americans. These Muslim families have no other place to provide for themselves its either the missionaries and there is always a Danger for Prostitution for survival. Unfortantetly Islamic aid Organizations are not allowed to work from Iraq since they would be labled as Terrorists and Killed, or detained by the American Military. Many of these Islamic Aid Organization have completely abonded their work in Iraq. Those few Islamic Aid Organizations who do risk the work to provide aid for their Brothers and Sisters in Iraq are being highly Monitored by the American Military and the Puppet Iraqi Government.
    Video - American Plans to Convert Iraq into Christianity

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    U.S. Soldiers Launch Campaign to Convert Iraqis to Christianity

    'The occupier is planting seeds of strife between the Muslims and Christians.' Iraqis claim Marines are pushing Christianity in Fallujah 28 May 2008 "They are trying to convert us to Christianity," said Muamar Anad, a Sunni Muslim like most residents of this city in Anbar province. Residents of Fallujah are abuzz that some Americans whom they consider occupiers are also acting as Christian missionaries. Residents said some Marines at the western entrance to their city have been passing out coins (with a Bible verse) for two days in what they call a "humiliating" attempt to convert them to Christianity.
    The McLatchy Report

    SOURCE: The Public Record
    The Public Record
    May 30, 2008

    Some U.S. soldiers stationed in Iraq appear to have launched a major initiative to covert thousands of Iraqi citizens to Christianity by distributing Bibles and other fundamentalist Christian literature translated into Arabic to Iraqi Muslims.

    A recent article published on the website of Mission Network News reported that Bible Pathway Ministries, a fundamentalist Christian organization, has provided thousands of a special military edition of its Daily Devotional Bible study book to members of the 101st Airborne Division of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, currently stationed in Iraq, the project "came into being when a chaplain in Iraq (who has since finished his tour) requested some books from Bible Pathway Ministries (BPM)."

    "The resulting product is a 6"x9" 496-page illustrated book with embossed cover containing 366 daily devotional commentaries, maps, charts, and additional helpful information," the Mission Network News report says.

    Chief Warrant Officer Rene Llanos of the 101st Airborne told Mission Network News, "the soldiers who are patrolling and walking the streets are taking along this copy, and they're using it to minister to the local residents."

    "Our division is also getting ready to head toward Afghanistan, so there will be copies heading out with the soldiers," Llanos said. "We need to pray for protection for our soldiers as they patrol and pray that God would continue to open doors. The soldiers are being placed in strategic places with a purpose. They're continuing to spread the Word."

    Karen Hawkins, a BPM official, said military chaplains "were trying to encourage soldiers to be in the Word everyday because they're in a very dangerous situation, and they need that protection."

    That would appear to violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment prohibiting government officials, including military personnel, from using the machinery of the state to promote any form of religion. The book's cover includes the logos of the five branches of the armed forces giving the impression that it's a publication sanctioned by the Pentagon.
    The distribution of the Bibles and Christian literature comes on the heels of a report published Wednesday by McClatchy Newspapers stating that U.S. Marines guarding the entrance to the city of Fallujah have been handing out "witnessing coins" to Sunni Muslims entering the city that read in Arabic on one side: "Where will you spend eternity?" and "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16" on the other.

    A Pentagon spokesman said he was unaware of the issue involving the distribution of coins and Bibles and declined to comment.

    The issue comes at a particularly sensitive time for Sunnis who recently clashed with U.S. military in an area west of Baghdad week after an American soldier was found to have used a Koran, the Islamic holy book, for target practice. Following a daylong protest by Iraqis that threatened to turn violent, Maj. Gen. Jeffery Hammond issued a public apology to Sunnis in the area.

    "I come before you here seeking your forgiveness," Hammond said. "In the most humble manner I look in your eyes today and I say please forgive me and my soldiers."

    The soldier who shot up the Koran was disciplined and removed from duty in Iraq.

    Mikey Weinstein, founder and president of the government watchdog agency The Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), said the religious intolerance among U.S. military personnel calls for a federal investigation.

    "The shocking actions revealed just last week of American soldiers in the combat zones of Iraq and Afghanistan callously using the Koran for automatic weapons "target practice" is absolutely connected to the same issues of national security breach wrought by our United States armed forces proselytizing the local populations via the distribution to them of fundamentalist Christian coins, bibles, tracts, comics and related religious materials written in Arabic," Weistein said.

    "The Military Religious Freedom Foundation has been acutely aware of such astonishing unconstitutional and illicit proselytizing in Iraq and Afghanistan for over three years now and knows how massively pervasive it really is. These proselytizing transgressions are all blatant violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and MRFF is now demanding that any and all responsible military personnel be immediately prosecuted under Article 92 of the UCMJ: Failure to Obey an Order or Regulation," Weinstein added.

    Members of the U.S. military first started actively proselytizing Iraqi Muslims soon after the U.S. invaded Iraq in March 2003.

    In a newsletter published in 2004 by the fundamentalist group International Ministerial Fellowship (IMF), Capt. Steve Mickel, an Army chaplain, claimed that Iraqis were eager to be converted to Christianity and that he personally tried to convert dozens of Iraqis, which is also an apparent constitutional violation.

    "I am able to give them tracts on how to be saved, printed in Arabic," Mickel said, according to a copy of the IMF newsletter. "I wish I had enough Arabic Bibles to give them as well. The issue of mailing Arabic Bibles into Iraq from the U.S. is difficult (given the current postal regulations prohibiting all religious materials contrary to Islam except for personal use of the soldiers). But the hunger for the Word of God in Iraq is very great, as I have witnessed first-hand."

    Mickel evangelized Iraqis while delivering leftover food to local residents from his unit's mess hall. He handed out Bibles translated into Arabic in the village of Ad Dawr, a predominantly Sunni territory where Saddam Hussein was captured.

    "Such fundamentalist Christian proselytizing DIRECTLY violates General Order 1A, Part 2, Section J issued by General Tommy Franks on behalf of the United States Central Command (USCENTCOM) back in December of 2000 which strictly prohibits "proselytizing of any religion, faith or practice," said Weinstein, a former Reagan administration White House counsel, former general counsel to presidential candidate H. Ross Perot, and former Air Force Judge Advocate General (JAG).

    In addition to coins and Bibles, there have been reports of the distribution to Iraqi children of Christian comic books published by companies such as Chick Publications. These inflammatory comic books, published in English and Arabic, not only depict Mohammed, but show both Mohammed and Muslims burning in hell because they did not accept Jesus as their savior before they died.

    Chick Publications states on its website that its literature "is desperately needed by Muslims, but getting it to them without endangering our soldiers or enflaming the Muslim leadership will not be easy."

    Postal regulations prohibit sending bulk religious materials contrary to Islam into Iraq, but allow religious materials to be sent to an individual soldier for their personal use.

    Sending more of these materials than would be necessary for an individual's personal use, but not a large enough quantity to risk being flagged by the postal service, is one way that these materials are making their way into Iraq. Chick Publications advises those wanting to send their literature to military personnel to first find out "just what tracts would be most useful and how many they can effectively use," and "to find out whether the tracts can be drop shipped from Chick Publications or if they should be sent as personal mail from the soldiers' families."

    A spokesman for Chick refused to comment for this story about the comics handed out to Iraqis.

    Meanwhile, members of the 101st Airborne stationed in Iraq will continue their work evangelizing Iraqis unless it is told otherwise.

    Llanos, the division's chief warrant officer, said about 2,000 copies of the military edition of the Bible provided to the 101st Airborne will soon be distributed to Iraqis.

    However, reports on the Bible Pathway Ministries website up to 30,000 of the Christian books have been distributed to military personnel, some of which will presumably end up in the hands of Iraqis.


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    Robin Hayes says we will win in Iraq by "spreading the message of Jesus Christ" there.

    Robin Hayes has the solution to the Iraq war: have our soldiers convert all Muslims to Christianity.

    Having won the election by only a hair’s width and almost getting himself kicked out of Congress seems to have had some profound psychological effects on poor Mr. Hayes. A speech that flip-floppin’ Robin gave last week at the Concord Rotary Club seems to prove he has finally gone off the deep end.

    Our local weekly newspaper the “Concord Standard and Mount Pleasant Times” reported on Mr. Hayes speech in his hometown:

    First there’s the usual talk of how we’re “winning” over there: “The war in Iraq has got to be won; it’s being won” (A couple of months ago Hayes said that the rise in violence in Iraq was an indication that we’re winning.)

    Then comes the real kicker: “Stability in Iraq ultimately depends on spreading the message of Jesus Christ, the message of peace on earth, good will towards men. Everything depends on everyone learning about the birth of the Savior.”

    So if we just turn our soldiers into missionaries everything will be okay, Mr. Hayes?

    First we sent our men over there to take out the WMD’s, then it was to “spread democracy”, now you want them there to “spread the message of Jesus Christ”? It so happens that people in Iraq already have a savior but unfortunately for Mr. Hayes it’s Muhammed, not Jesus.

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    Default U.S. Military's Middle East Crusade For Christ

    U.S. Military's Middle East Crusade For Christ
    By Robert Weitzel

    10 June, 2008 - Countercurrents.org

    "They are proselytizing not on behalf of the Constitution of the United States . . . but rather on behalf of some sort of fanatical view of end times. And they are using our army to affect that." -Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson

    Last August the watchdog group, Military Religious Freedom Foundation, foiled a Pentagon plan that would have allowed the shipment of "freedom packages" to soldiers and Marines in Iraq. The parcels were put together by the fundamentalist Christian ministry, Straight Up, and contained Bibles, proselytizing tracts in English and Arabic, and the apocalyptic "Left Behind" computer game, in which Christian Tribulation forces convert or kill infidels—nonbelievers, Muslims and Jews.

    On May 1 the Senate approved the promotion of Brigadier General Robert L. Caslen Jr. to Major General. Currently the commandant of cadets at West Point, he will become the commander of the 25th Infantry Division. He is also president of the stridently fundamentalist Officer's Christian Fellowship, whose vision is a "spiritually transformed military, with ambassadors for Christ in uniform, empowered by the Holy Spirit"

    General Caslen was promoted despise the Defense Department's recommended disciplinary action against him and several other senior military leaders because they had "improperly endorsed and participated with a nonfederal entity while in uniform" by participating in a promotional video for the Campus Crusade For Christ's Christian Embassy, an evangelical organization that ministers to Beltway politicians and sponsors weekly Bible studies at the Pentagon.

    According to the DoD Inspector General's report, one of the generals involved "asserted that Christian Embassy was treated as an instrumentality of the Pentagon Chaplain's office for over 25 years, and had effectively become a 'quasi federal entity.'" Arguably, he believed his participation in the video was in the line of duty.

    Considering both the Pentagon's evangelical proclivity and a 2006 Pew survey which found that of the major religious groups in America, evangelicals have the most negative views of Islam and Muslims, the U.S. sniper who was recently caught using the Quran for target practice in the Baghdad neighborhood of Radhwaniya might be excused for thinking the book was a legitimate target upon which to perfect his craft . . . excused for thinking he was acting in the line duty.

    And is it any wonder that with evangelicals and fundamentalists at the very top of the military's officer corps —to say nothing of their Commander in Chief—that an enlisted Marine was passing out Christian "witnessing coins" inscribed in Arabic at a checkpoint in Fallujah? One side of the coin asked, "Where will you spend eternity?" An evangelical favorite, John 3:16, was on the flip side.

    Sheik Adul-Rahman al-Zubaie, a tribal leader in Fallujah who was outraged by the Marine's proselytizing said, "This event did not happen by chance, but it was planned and done intentionally."

    While the Marine's proselytizing is not the official policy of the predominately Christian force occupying the predominately Islamic Iraq, it was done "in the line of duty" with a wink and a nod from his chain of command. Think Abu Ghraib!

    From Fort Jackson, the Army's largest basic training facility, where trainees are encouraged to attend Campus Crusade's weekly "God's Basic Training" programs, to the U.S. Air Force Academy where students are pressured to attend the Crusade's weekly "cru" (short for crusade) Bible study, American military personnel are, as Campus Crusade's Scot Blom gloats, "government paid missionaries" when they complete their training.

    As the demands of fighting a perpetual war against "radical Islam" begins to strain both the military's resources and the country's resolve, the Pentagon has begun outsourcing larger chunks of the war to private contractors. Predictably, our "government paid missionaries" have become more expensive and much less controllable or accountable.

    The Bush administration's favorite contractor, Blackwater, is the most powerful private army in the world. It commands thousands of mercenaries in Iraq and Afghanistan, has over a billion dollars in government contracts, and enjoys complete immunity from prosecution for its theater of operations' conduct.

    Blackwater's founder, Erik Prince, a staunchly conservative Catholic, has also served on the board of directors of Christian Freedom International, a crusading missionary organization operating in the overwhelmingly Islamic countries of Sudan, Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Prince envisions an evangelical "end time" role for his warriors, "Everybody carries guns, just like Jeremiah rebuilding the temple in Israel—a sword in one hand and a trowel in the other."

    No one in the last decade has contributed more to end time, apocalyptic evangelism than John Hagee, a televangelist seen by millions of viewers weekly and pastor of the 19,000-member Cornerstone Church. Hagee preaches that in order to bring about the Second Coming of Christ and the Rapture of true believers, Islam first has to be destroyed.

    In a 2006 interview with National Public Radio's Terry Gross, Hagee told her, "Those who live by the Quran have a scriptural mandate to kill Christians and Jews." He went on to claim that there are 200 million Muslims waiting for the chance to attack Israel and the United States. From his pulpit, Hagee makes it clear to his congregation and the radio and television audience what they can expect from American Muslims if such an attack ever took place, "While American Muslims live in America, 82 percent are not loyal to America and are not willing to fight and defend America."
    In his book, "Jerusalem Countdown - A Warning to the World," Hagee warns that the war between Islam and the West "is a war that Islam cannot and must not win."

    John Hagee is not just a mad evangelizing prophet. He is the mad evangelizing prophet who is courted by a war president, a hawkish presidential candidate and members of Congress from both parties. His Islamophobic bilge has trickled down from Capital Hill, through the labyrinthine corridors of the Pentagon, and into the chamber of a sniper's rifle and the hand of a Marine guarding a checkpoint in Fallujah.

    Officers in the military are expected to lead by example. Enlisted personnel are expected to follow that example. If the recent incidents at Radhwaniya and Fallujah are not just the acts of renegades, then the chain of command seems to be working the way it was designed.

    Robert Weitzel is a contributing editor to Media With a Conscience. His essays regularly appear in The Capital Times in Madison, WI. He can be contacted at: robertweitzel@mac.com

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    US soldiers told to act as Christian missionaries in Afghanistan

    'Witness for Jesus' in Afghanistan
    - 04 May 2009


    US soldiers have been encouraged to spread the message of their Christian faith among Afghanistan's predominantly Muslim population, video footage obtained by Al Jazeera appears to show.
    Military chaplains stationed in the US air base at Bagram were also filmed with bibles printed in the country's main Pashto and Dari languages. In one recorded sermon, Lieutenant-Colonel Gary Hensley, the chief of the US military chaplains in Afghanistan, is seen telling soldiers that as followers of Jesus Christ, they all have a responsibility "to be witnesses for him". "The special forces guys - they hunt men basically. We do the same things as Christians, we hunt people for Jesus. We do, we hunt them down," he says. "Get the hound of heaven after them, so we get them into the kingdom. That's what we do, that's our business."

    'Witness for Jesus' in Afghanistan

    Bagram has a thriving evangelical
    Christian community

    US soldiers have been encouraged to spread the message of their Christian faith among Afghanistan's predominantly Muslim population, video footage obtained by Al Jazeera appears to show.

    Military chaplains stationed in the US air base at Bagram were also filmed with bibles printed in the country's main Pashto and Dari languages.

    In one recorded sermon, Lieutenant-Colonel Gary Hensley, the chief of the US military chaplains in Afghanistan, is seen telling soldiers that as followers of Jesus Christ, they all have a responsibility "to be witnesses for him".

    "The special forces guys - they hunt men basically. We do the same things as Christians, we hunt people for Jesus. We do, we hunt them down," he says."Get the hound of heaven after them, so we get them into the kingdom. That's what we do, that's our business."

    Local language Bibles

    The footage, shot about a year ago by Brian Hughes, a documentary maker and former member of the US military who spent several days in Bagram, was obtained by Al Jazeera's James Bays, who has covered Afghanistan extensively.


    US troops urged to 'witness for Jesus' in Afghanistan

    More videos ...

    Bays also obtained from Hughes a Pashto-language copy of one of the books he picked up during a Bible study lesson he recorded at Bagram.

    A Pashto speaker confirmed to Bays that it was a Bible.

    In other footage captured at Bagram, Sergeant Jon Watt, a soldier who is set to become a military chaplain, is seen giving thanks for the work that his church in the US did in getting Bibles printed and sent to Afghanistan.

    "I also want to praise God because my church collected some money to get Bibles for Afghanistan. They came and sent the money out," he is heard saying during a Bible study class.

    It is not clear that the Bibles were distributed to Afghans, but Hughes said that none of the people he recorded in a series of sermons and Bible study classes appeared to able to speak Pashto or Dari.
    "They weren't talking about learning how to speak Dari or Pashto, by reading the Bible and using that as the tool for language lessons," Hughes said."The only reason they would have these documents there was to distribute them to the Afghan people. And I knew it was wrong, and I knew that filming it … documenting it would be important."

    Pentagon officials have so far not responded to a copy of the footage provided to them, but the distribution of Bibles in a place as politically sensitive as Afghanistan is bound to cause deep concern in Washington, our correspondent says.


    It is not clear if the presence of the Bibles and exhortations for soldiers to be "witnesses" for Jesus continues, but they were filmed a year ago despite regulations by the US military's Central Command that expressly forbid "proselytising of any religion, faith or practice".

    It is not clear any of the local language Bibles were distributed to Afghans

    But in another piece of footage taken by Hughes, the chaplains appear to have found a way around the regulation known as General Order Number One.

    "Do we know what it means to proselytise?" Captain Emmit Furner, a military chaplain, says to the gathering.

    "It is General Order Number One," an unidentified soldier replies.

    But Watt says "you can't proselytise but you can give gifts".

    The footage also suggests US soldiers gave out Bibles in Iraq.

    In his address to a Bible study group at Bagram, Afghanistan, Watt is recorded as saying: "I bought a carpet and then I gave the guy a Bible after I conducted my business.

    "The Bible wasn't to be 'hey, I'll give you this and I'll give you a better deal because that would be wrong', [but] the expressions that I got from the people in Iraq [were] just phenomenal, they were hungry for the word."

    The footage has surfaced as Barack Obama, the US president, prepares to host Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan's puppet president, at a summit focusing on how to tackle al-Qaeda and Taliban bases dotted along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

    Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan's puppet president, will also take part in the talks in Washington, scheduled for May 5 and 6.

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    They're out there to convert our brothers and sisters and we sit back and forget what our duty is ie to be da'ees in every facet of our life. To live the life that Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) lead and preached.
    A pirate was captured & brought before Alexander the Great. Alexander asked the pirate: 'How dare you molest the people?' The pirate replied:'And how dare you molest the entire world? I am called a thief because I do it with a little ship only. You do it with a great navy & you are called an Emperor!'
    Under this scenario, powerless people doing trivial acts are the major terrorists of the world whilst major powers perpetrating terrorism in many parts of the world are the civilised barbarians.

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    Secret Bible Verses on Weapons Used in Muslim Lands

    Following ABC News Report of Secret Bible Verses on Weapons Used in Muslim Lands, Marines Will Meet With Maker of Equipment

    Following an ABC News report that thousands of gun sights used by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan are inscribed with secret Bible references, a spokesperson for the Marine Corps said the Corps is 'concerned' and will discuss the matter with the weapons manufacturer.

    Video - http://www.sendspace.com/file/ry21rm

    In August of 2005 Trijicon was awarded a $660 million dollar, multi-year contract to provide up to 800,000 of its Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG) to the U.S. Marine Corps. According to Trijicon, the ACOG is "designed to function in bright light, low light or no light conditions," and is "ideal for combat due to its high degree of discrimination, even among multiple moving targets." At the end of the scope's model number, you can read "JN8:12", which is a reference to the New Testament book of John, Chapter 8, Verse 12, which reads: "Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." (King James Version) (ABC News)

    Trijicon's Reflex scope, which according to the company, is "the fastest, most user-friendly gunsight in the field." According to Trijicon, "the U.S. Special Operations Command has designated the Trijicon Reflex as a vital part of the…Accessory Kit fielded by all Special Operations Forces. This scope is imprinted with the marking "2COR4:6", a reference to the second book of Corinthians in the New Testament, Chapter 4, Verse 6. The verse reads: "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." (King James Version) (ABC News)

    Trijicon scopes are used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the training of Iraqi and Afghan soldiers. Here, Iraq Provincial Security Forces sight targets through ACOGs mounted on M-16A4 rifles at a training range at Observation Post Delta in Karmah, Iraq, May 8, 2008. (defenseimagery.mil)

    A U.S. Army captain gives an Iraqi boy a peek through the ACOG on his M-4 carbine assault rifle in the village of Sudoor, Diyala, Iraq in December of 2009. (defenseimagery.mil)

    more photos

    U.S. Military's Middle East Crusade For Christ


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    It's Not All About Democracy: The Very Dark Side of American History


    This tradition goes back to the treatment of Native Americans in the 19th century.

    Many Americans view their country and its soldiers as the "good guys" spreading "democracy" and "liberty" around the world. When the United States inflicts unnecessary death and destruction, it's viewed as a mistake or an aberration.In the following article, Peter Dale Scott and Robert Parry examine the long history of these acts of brutality, a record that suggests they are neither a "mistake" nor an "aberration" but rather conscious counterinsurgency doctrine on the "dark side."

    There is a dark -- seldom acknowledged -- thread that runs through U.S. military doctrine, dating back to the early days of the Republic.

    This military tradition has explicitly defended the selective use of terror, whether in suppressing Native American resistance on the frontiers in the 19th Century or in protecting U.S. interests abroad in the 20th Century or fighting the "war on terror" over the last decade.

    The American people are largely oblivious to this hidden tradition because most of the literature advocating state-sponsored terror is carefully confined to national security circles and rarely spills out into the public debate, which is instead dominated by feel-good messages about well-intentioned U.S. interventions abroad.

    Over the decades, congressional and journalistic investigations have exposed some of these abuses. The recent release of the Senate torture report is one example. But when that does happen, the cases are usually deemed anomalies or excesses by out-of-control soldiers.

    Yet the historical record shows that terror tactics have long been a dark side of U.S. military doctrine. The theories survive today in textbooks on counterinsurgency warfare, "low-intensity" conflict and "counter-terrorism."
    Some historians trace the formal acceptance of those brutal tenets to the 1860s when the U.S. Army was facing challenge from a rebellious South and resistance from Native Americans in the West. Out of those crises emerged the modern military concept of "total war" -- which considers attacks on civilians and their economic infrastructure an integral part of a victorious strategy.

    In 1864, General William Tecumseh Sherman cut a swath of destruction through civilian territory in Georgia and the Carolinas. His plan was to destroy the South's will to fight and its ability to sustain a large army in the field. The devastation left plantations in flames and brought widespread Confederate complaints of rape and murder of civilians.

    Meanwhile, in Colorado, Colonel John M. Chivington and the Third Colorado Cavalry were employing their own terror tactics to pacify Cheyennes. A scout named John Smith later described the attack at Sand Creek, Colorado, on unsuspecting Indians at a peaceful encampment:

    "They were scalped; their brains knocked out; the men used their knives, ripped open women, clubbed little children, knocked them in the head with their guns, beat their brains out, mutilated their bodies in every sense of the word." [U.S. Cong., Senate, 39 Cong., 2nd Sess., "The Chivington Massacre," Reports of the Committees.]

    Though Smith's objectivity was challenged at the time, today even defenders of the Sand Creek raid concede that most women and children there were killed and mutilated. [See Lt. Col. William R. Dunn, I Stand by Sand Creek.]
    Yet, in the 1860s, many whites in Colorado saw the slaughter as the only realistic way to bring peace, just as Sherman viewed his "march to the sea" as necessary to force the South's surrender.

    The brutal tactics in the West also helped clear the way for the transcontinental railroad, built fortunes for favored businessmen and consolidated Republican political power for more than six decades, until the Great Depression of the 1930s. [See Consortiumnews.com's "Indian Genocide and Republican Power."]

    Four years after the Civil War, Sherman became commanding general of the Army and incorporated the Indian pacification strategies -- as well as his own tactics -- into U.S. military doctrine. General Philip H. Sheridan, who had led Indian wars in the Missouri territory, succeeded Sherman in 1883 and further entrenched those strategies as policy. [See Ward Churchill, A Little Matter of Genocide.]

    By the end of the 19th Century, the Native American warriors had been vanquished, but the Army's winning strategies lived on.

    Imperial America

    When the United States claimed the Philippines as a prize in the Spanish-American War, Filipino insurgents resisted. In 1900, the U.S. commander, General J. Franklin Bell, consciously modeled his brutal counterinsurgency campaign after the Indian wars and Sherman's "march to the sea."

    Bell believed that by punishing the wealthier Filipinos through destruction of their homes -- much as Sherman had done in the South -- they would be coerced into helping convince their countrymen to submit.

    Learning from the Indian wars, he also isolated the guerrillas by forcing Filipinos into tightly controlled zones where schools were built and other social amenities were provided.

    "The entire population outside of the major cities in Batangas was herded into concentration camps," wrote historian Stuart Creighton Miller. "Bell's main target was the wealthier and better-educated classes. … Adding insult to injury, Bell made these people carry the petrol used to burn their own country homes." [See Miller's "Benevolent Assimilation."]

    For those outside the protected areas, there was terror. A supportive news correspondent described one scene in which American soldiers killed "men, women, children … from lads of 10 and up, an idea prevailing that the Filipino, as such, was little better than a dog. …

    "Our soldiers have pumped salt water into men to 'make them talk,' have taken prisoner people who held up their hands and peacefully surrendered, and an hour later, without an atom of evidence to show they were even insurrectos, stood them on a bridge and shot them down one by one, to drop into the water below and float down as an example to those who found their bullet-riddled corpses."

    Defending the tactics, the correspondent noted that "it is not civilized warfare, but we are not dealing with a civilized people. The only thing they know and fear is force, violence, and brutality." [Philadelphia Ledger, Nov. 19, 1900]

    In 1901, anti-imperialists in Congress exposed and denounced Bell's brutal tactics. Nevertheless, Bell's strategies won military acclaim as a refined method of pacification.

    In a 1973 book, one pro-Bell military historian, John Morgan Gates, termed reports of U.S. atrocities "exaggerated" and hailed Bell's "excellent understanding of the role of benevolence in pacification."

    Gates recalled that Bell's campaign in Batanga was regarded by military strategists as "pacification in its most perfected form." [See Gates's Schoolbooks and Krags: The United States Army in the Philippines, 1898-1902.]

    Spreading the Word

    At the turn of the century, the methodology of pacification was a hot topic among the European colonial powers, too. From Namibia to Indochina, Europeans struggled to subdue local populations.

    Often outright slaughter proved effective, as the Germans demonstrated with massacres of the Herrero tribe in Namibia from 1904-1907. But military strategists often compared notes about more subtle techniques of targeted terror mixed with demonstrations of benevolence.

    Counterinsurgency strategies were back in vogue after World War II as many subjugated people demanded independence from colonial rule and Washington worried about the expansion of communism. In the 1950s, the Huk rebellion against U.S. dominance made the Philippines again the laboratory, with Bell's earlier lessons clearly remembered.

    "The campaign against the Huk movement in the Philippines … greatly resembled the American campaign of almost 50 years earlier," historian Gates observed. "The American approach to the problem of pacification had been a studied one."

    But the war against the Huks had some new wrinkles, particularly the modern concept of psychological warfare or psy-war.

    Under the pioneering strategies of the CIA's Major General Edward G. Lansdale, psy-war was a new spin to the old game of breaking the will of a target population. The idea was to analyze the psychological weaknesses of a people and develop "themes" that could induce actions favorable to those carrying out the operation.

    While psy-war included propaganda and disinformation, it also relied on terror tactics of a demonstrative nature. An Army psy-war pamphlet, drawing on Lansdale's experience in the Philippines, advocated "exemplary criminal violence -- the murder and mutilation of captives and the display of their bodies," according to Michael McClintock's Instruments of Statecraft.

    In his memoirs, Lansdale boasted of one legendary psy-war trick used against the Huks who were considered superstitious and fearful of a vampire-like creature called an asuang.

    "The psy-war squad set up an ambush along a trail used by the Huks," Lansdale wrote. "When a Huk patrol came along the trail, the ambushers silently snatched the last man on the patrol, their move unseen in the dark night. They punctured his neck with two holes, vampire-fashion, held the body up by the heels, drained it of blood, and put the corpse back on the trail.

    "When the Huks returned to look for the missing man and found their bloodless comrade, every member of the patrol believed the asuang had got him." [See Lansdale's In the Midst of Wars.]

    The Huk rebellion also saw the refinement of free-fire zones, a technique used effectively by Bell's forces a half-century earlier. In the 1950s, special squadrons were assigned to do the dirty work.

    "The special tactic of these squadrons was to cordon off areas; anyone they caught inside the cordon was considered an enemy," explained one pro-U.S. Filipino colonel. "Almost daily you could find bodies floating in the river, many of them victims of [Major Napoleon] Valeriano's Nenita Unit. [See Benedict J. Kerkvliet, The Huk Rebellion: A Study of Peasant Revolt in the Philippines.]

    On to Vietnam

    The successful suppression of the Huks led the war's architects to share their lessons elsewhere in Asia and beyond. Valeriano went on to co-author an important American textbook on counterinsurgency and to serve as part of the American pacification effort in Vietnam with Lansdale.

    Following the Philippine model, Vietnamese were crowded into "strategic hamlets"; "free-fire zones" were declared with homes and crops destroyed; and the Phoenix program eliminated thousands of suspected Viet Cong cadre.

    The ruthless strategies were absorbed and accepted even by widely respected military figures such as General Colin Powell, who served two tours in Vietnam and endorsed the routine practice of murdering Vietnamese males as a necessary part of the counterinsurgency effort.

    "I recall a phrase we used in the field, MAM, for military-age male," Powell wrote in his much-lauded memoir, My American Journey. "If a helo [a U.S. helicopter] spotted a peasant in black pajamas who looked remotely suspicious, a possible MAM, the pilot would circle and fire in front of him. If he moved, his movement was judged evidence of hostile intent, and the next burst was not in front, but at him.

    "Brutal? Maybe so. But an able battalion commander with whom I had served at Gelnhausen [West Germany], Lt. Col. Walter Pritchard, was killed by enemy sniper fire while observing MAMs from a helicopter. And Pritchard was only one of many. The kill-or-be-killed nature of combat tends to dull fine perceptions of right and wrong."

    In 1965, the U.S. intelligence community formalized its hard-learned counterinsurgency lessons by commissioning a top-secret program called Project X. Based at the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and School at Fort Holabird, Maryland, the project drew from field experience and developed teaching plans to "provide intelligence training to friendly foreign countries," according to a Pentagon history prepared in 1991 and released in 1997.

    Called "a guide for the conduct of clandestine operations," Project X "was first used by the U.S. Intelligence School on Okinawa to train Vietnamese and, presumably, other foreign nationals," the history stated.

    Linda Matthews of the Pentagon's Counterintelligence Division recalled that in 1967-68, some of the Project X training material was prepared by officers connected to the Phoenix program. "She suggested the possibility that some offending material from the Phoenix program may have found its way into the Project X materials at that time," the Pentagon report said.

    In the 1970s, the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and School moved to Fort Huachuca in Arizona and began exporting Project X material to U.S. military assistance groups working with "friendly foreign countries." By the mid-1970s, the Project X material was going to armies all over the world.

    In its 1992 review, the Pentagon acknowledged that Project X was the source for some of the "objectionable" lessons at the School of the Americas where Latin American officers were trained in blackmail, kidnapping, murder and spying on non-violent political opponents.

    But disclosure of the full story was blocked near the end of the first Bush administration when senior Pentagon officials working for then-Defense Secretary Dick Cheney ordered the destruction of most Project X records. [See Robert Parry's Lost History.]

    Living Dangerously

    By the mid-1960s, some of the U.S. counterinsurgency lessons had reached Indonesia, too. The U.S. military training was surreptitious because Washington viewed the country's neutralist leader Sukarno as politically suspect. The training was permitted only to give the United States influence within the Indonesian military which was considered more reliable.

    The covert U.S. aid and training was mostly innocuous-sounding "civic action," which is generally thought to mean building roads, staffing health clinics and performing other "hearts-and-minds" activities with civilians. But "civic action" also provided cover in Indonesia, as in the Philippines and Vietnam, for psy-war.

    The secret U.S.-Indonesian military connections paid off for Washington when a political crisis erupted, threatening Sukarno's government.

    To counter Indonesia's powerful Communist Party, known as the PKI, the army's Red Berets organized the slaughter of tens of thousands of men, women and children. So many bodies were dumped into the rivers of East Java that they ran red with blood.

    In a classic psy-war tactic, the bloated carcasses also served as a political warning to villages down river.

    "To make sure they didn't sink, the carcasses were deliberately tied to, or impaled on, bamboo stakes," wrote eyewitness Pipit Rochijat. "And the departure of corpses from the Kediri region down the Brantas achieved its golden age when bodies were stacked on rafts over which the PKI banner proudly flew." [See Rochijat's "Am I PKI or Non-PKI?" Indonesia, Oct. 1985.]

    Some historians have attributed the grotesque violence to a crazed army which engaged in "unplanned brutality" or "mass hysteria" leading ultimately to the slaughter of some half million Indonesians, many of Chinese descent.
    But the recurring tactic of putting bodies on gruesome display fits as well with the military doctrines of psy-war, a word that one of the leading military killers used in un-translated form in one order demanding elimination of the PKI.

    Sarwo Edhie, chief of the political para-commando battalion known as the Red Berets, warned that the communist opposition "should be given no opportunity to concentrate/consolidate. It should be pushed back systematically by all means, including psy-war." [See The Revolt of the G30S/PKI and Its Suppression, translated by Robert Cribb in The Indonesian Killings.]

    Sarwo Edhie had been identified as a CIA contact when he served at the Indonesian Embassy in Australia. [See Pacific, May-June 1968.]

    U.S. Media Sympathy

    Elite U.S. reaction to the horrific slaughter was muted and has remained ambivalent ever since. The Johnson administration denied any responsibility for the massacres, but New York Times columnist James Reston spoke for many opinion leaders when he approvingly termed the bloody developments in Indonesia "a gleam of light in Asia."

    The American denials of involvement held until 1990 when U.S. diplomats admitted to a reporter that they had aided the Indonesian army by supplying lists of suspected communists.

    "It really was a big help to the army," embassy officer Robert Martens told Kathy Kadane of States News Service. "I probably have a lot of blood on my hands, but that's not all bad. There's a time when you have to strike hard at a decisive moment." Martens had headed the U.S. team that compiled the death lists.

    Kadane's story provoked a telling response from Washington Post senior editorial writer Stephen S. Rosenfeld. He accepted the fact that American officials had assisted "this fearsome slaughter," but then justified the killings.

    Rosenfeld argued that the massacre "was and still is widely regarded as the grim but earned fate of a conspiratorial revolutionary party that represented the same communist juggernaut that was on the march in Vietnam."

    In a column entitled, "Indonesia 1965: The Year of Living Cynically?" Rosenfeld reasoned that "either the army would get the communists or the communists would get the army, it was thought: Indonesia was a domino, and the PKI's demise kept it [Indonesia] standing in the free world. …

    "Though the means were grievously tainted, we -- the fastidious among us as well as the hard-headed and cynical -- can be said to have enjoyed the fruits in the geopolitical stability of that important part of Asia, in the revolution that never happened." [Washington Post, July 13, 1990]

    The fruit tasted far more bitter to the peoples of the Indonesian archipelago, however. In 1975, the army of Indonesia's new dictator, Gen. Suharto, invaded the former Portuguese colony of East Timor. When the East Timorese resisted, the Indonesian army returned to its gruesome bag of tricks, engaging in virtual genocide against the population.
    A Catholic missionary provided an eyewitness account of one search-and-destroy mission in East Timor in 1981.

    "We saw with our own eyes the massacre of the people who were surrendering: all dead, even women and children, even the littlest ones. … Not even pregnant women were spared: they were cut open. …. They did what they had done to small children the previous year, grabbing them by the legs and smashing their heads against rocks. …

    "The comments of Indonesian officers reveal the moral character of this army: 'We did the same thing [in 1965] in Java, in Borneo, in the Celebes, in Irian Jaya, and it worked." [See A. Barbedo de Magalhaes, East Timor: Land of Hope.]

    The references to the success of the 1965 slaughter were not unusual. In Timor: A People Betrayed, author James Dunn noted that "on the Indonesian side, there have been many reports that many soldiers viewed their operation as a further phase in the ongoing campaign to suppress communism that had followed the events of September 1965."

    Classic psy-war and pacification strategies were followed to the hilt in East Timor. The Indonesians put on display corpses and the heads of their victims. Timorese also were herded into government-controlled camps before permanent relocation in "resettlement villages" far from their original homes.

    "The problem is that people are forced to live in the settlements and are not allowed to travel outside," said Msgr. Costa Lopes, apostolic administrator of Dili. "This is the main reason why people cannot grow enough food." [See John G. Taylor, Indonesia's Forgotten War: The Hidden History of East Timor.]

    Public Revulsion

    Through television in the 1960-70s, the Vietnam War finally brought the horrors of counterinsurgency home to millions of Americans. They watched as U.S. troops torched villages and forced distraught old women to leave ancestral homes.

    Camera crews caught on film brutal interrogation of Viet Cong suspects, the execution of one young VC officer, and the bombing of children with napalm.

    In effect, the Vietnam War was the first time Americans got to witness the pacification strategies that had evolved secretly as national security policy since the 19th Century. As a result, millions of Americans protested the war's conduct and Congress belatedly compelled an end to U.S. participation in 1974.

    But the psy-war doctrinal debates were not resolved by the Vietnam War. Counterinsurgency advocates regrouped in the 1980s behind President Ronald Reagan, who mounted a spirited defense of the Vietnamese intervention and reaffirmed U.S. resolve to employ similar tactics against leftist forces especially in Central America. [See Consortiumnews.com's "Guatemala: A Test Tube for Repression."]

    Reagan also added an important new component to the mix. Recognizing how graphic images and honest reporting from the war zone had undercut public support for the counterinsurgency in Vietnam, Reagan authorized an aggressive domestic "public diplomacy" operation which practiced what was called "perception management" -- in effect, intimidating journalists to ensure that only sanitized information would reach the American people.
    Reporters who disclosed atrocities by U.S.-trained forces, such as the El Mozote massacre by El Salvador's Atlacatl battalion in 1981, came under harsh criticism and saw their careers damaged.

    Some Reagan operatives were not shy about their defense of political terror as a necessity of the Cold War. Neil Livingstone, a counter-terrorism consultant to the National Security Council, called death squads "an extremely effective tool, however odious, in combatting terrorism and revolutionary challenges." [See McClintock's Instruments of Statecraft.]

    When Democrats in Congress objected to excesses of Reagan's interventions in Central America, the administration responded with more public relations and political pressure, questioning the patriotism of the critics. For instance, Reagan's United Nations Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick accused anyone who took note of U.S.-backed war crimes of "blaming America first."

    Many Democrats in Congress and journalists in the Washington press corps buckled under the attacks, giving the Reagan administration much freer rein to carry out brutal "death squad" strategies in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

    What is clear from these experiences in Indonesia, Vietnam, Central America and elsewhere is that the United States, for generations, has sustained two parallel but opposed states of mind about military atrocities and human rights: one of U.S. benevolence, generally held by the public, and the other of ends-justify-the-means brutality embraced by counterinsurgency specialists.

    Normally the specialists carry out their actions in remote locations with little notice in the national press. But sometimes the two competing visions - of a just America and a ruthless one - clash in the open, as they did in Vietnam.

    Or the dark side of U.S. security policy is thrown into the light by unauthorized leaks, such as the photos of abused detainees at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq or by revelations about waterboarding and other torture authorized by George W. Bush's White House as part of the "war on terror."

    Only then does the public get a glimpse of the grim reality, the bloody and brutal tactics that have been deemed "necessary" for more than two centuries in the defense of the purported "national interests."


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    It’s 2015. Time For Some New US Operations In Iraq And Afghanistan


    America's major wars are technically over, but there are still plenty of boots on the ground. Here's a look at the missions guiding US engagement this year.

    Considering the fanfare it’s capable of, the US military had quite a muted exit from America’s longest war. The mission known as Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) — which had been running since the 9/11 attacks of 2001, in Afghanistan and several other countries — officially ended late last month.

    Maybe the celebration was subdued because there was another mission right around the corner. OEF was replaced immediately by Operation Freedom’s Sentinel (OFS), otherwise known as the new US mission in Afghanistan. US forces with OFS will also work as part of the new NATO-led Operation Resolute Support, providing the bulk of that operation’s 12,000 total troops this year and thousands more in 2016.

    Meanwhile, in Iraq and Syria, Operation Inherent Resolve has been underway since the US began airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) in early August last year. In Iraq, thousands of US forces are also on the ground training Iraqi and Kurdish peshmerga troops.

    So, how has US engagement in Afghanistan and Iraq actually changed since the major wars officially ended? Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s happening right now, keeping the acronyms as limited as possible.


    The war in Afghanistan has cost the US more than 2,200 lives and close to $700 billion — to say nothing of the additional costs for care of wounded veterans and the other “social and economic costs” of war, as one Harvard economist put it. Just over 100,000 US troops were deployed in Afghanistan in mid-2011. This time last year, OEF forces there were down to 38,000.

    The US military, as part of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), is well known for its combat operations. But it has also been advising and training Afghan forces for years. Under OFS, the new US operation, any direct fighting will be extremely limited. Up to 10,800 US troops will support NATO’s Operation Resolute Support to “continue training, advising, and assisting Afghan security forces,” outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said last month. (The new NATO mission replaces the prior ISAF combat mission.)

    The primary US mission aside from that is counterterrorism, particularly targeting Al Qaeda. Taliban violence has also been surging recently, worrying Afghans and international forces. President Barack Obama has authorized US troops to intervene in cases when Afghan forces may be overwhelmed by Taliban attack.

    “At the invitation of the Afghan government, and to preserve the gains we have made together, the United States — along with our allies and partners — will maintain a limited military presence in Afghanistan,” Obama said on Dec. 28.

    NATO has plans to expand their 12,000-strong fleet to 13,500 later this year. For now, the US is providing most of the troops.

    [Comments: In other words, after the war crimes, the massacres, the rapes, etc. they are now going to have permanent military bases in the land. The army they are "training, advising" are the warlords and thugs that were causing chaos in the first place. ]


    The US-led war in Iraq, Operation Iraqi Freedom — renamed in 2010 as Operation New Dawn — lasted from 2003 until the end of 2011. Nearly 4,500 US personnel died in that time, a number dwarfed by the six-figure Iraqi fatalities. The effort cost the US more than $800 billion. At the peak of the war, some 170,000 military personnel were deployed in Iraq.

    The US significantly re-engaged in Iraq on Aug. 8, 2014, when airstrikes began against IS, also known as ISIS or ISIL, in Iraq and Syria. Operation Inherent Resolve has been underway for five months (though the operation wasn’t given a name until Oct. 15), and now includes a training element: 2,100 US troops are working with Iraqi and Kurdish forces in northern Iraq, providing strategic advice, assistance, and tactical training. That number is likely to increase to 3,400 by the end of January, to train an estimated 12 Iraqi brigades.

    The US spent a billion dollars fighting IS in the first four months of Operation Inherent Resolve. The Pentagon says current operations against IS run them about $8 million dollars a day.

    Much like in Afghanistan, US personnel in Iraq are not being explicitly assigned to combat roles. But their work with local militaries and targeting of extremists could mean they get caught up in fighting.

    As of 2013, some 2.5 million US service members had deployed one or more times to Iraq or Afghanistan. Their ranks will grow a little larger this year.

    [Comments: The ISIS is their creation, much like al-qaeda was. They always need "bogey" man and reason to invade and occupy Muslim lands. Their own generals were saying this could be a 30 year war. The plan will be to occupy Syria next and even Turkey later one, either all or part of it. The long term plan, in addition to changing Middle East map, is to secure all the area along the Euphrates river ]


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    Ukip (UK extremist group) couldn't improve on what Winston Churchill had to say about Muslims

    Churchill published some views so dark about Muslims that he deleted them from future editions – but I kept hold of them

    As the Havengore carried Churchill’s body down the Thames, I was not at all enjoying his funeral.

    A cub reporter on the Newcastle Evening Chronicle, I was based in the frozen coal port of Blyth, where even the puddles of vomit outside the pubs frosted over on Sunday mornings. And the Blyth lifeboat – how all of us regretted it – had long ago been named the Winston S Churchill and even the town’s socialist dignitaries agreed that this blue-painted but life-saving barque should set off into the North Sea blizzards on 30 January 1965 with, you guessed it, a clutch of local reporters on board.

    A 19-year-old Fisk managed (just) to master his seasickness while a council flunky hurled a rather tatty wreath into the waters as the boat pitched horribly amid the waves.

    A colleague was later heard to remark that we could “thank fucking Churchill for that”, a comment that did not find its way into my report for the Chron.

    This, of course, was before the dung heap of history took a swing at the old man’s life. Gallipoli, the creation of fraudulent Arab satraps in the sandpits of Transjordania and Mesopotamia, the deployment of troops in the General Strike, Dresden, those old racist quotes (the Indians, the “fakir” Gandhi, the Red Indians); they’re all part of the “don’t-forget-what-a-****-Churchill-was” coverage that would never have been published in our coverage of the funeral 50 years ago.

    But I have to report that Churchill had some pretty intemperate views about Muslims, which he expressed in the first edition of his 1899 account of the Sudan campaign, The River War – views so dark that he was persuaded to delete them from all later editions.

    “How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism [sic] lays on its votaries!” Churchill wrote in this now almost unobtainable first edition. “Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy … Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture … exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity.”

    There is much more on the enslavement of women and the dangers of Islam, along with the usual liberal sentiments which have their modern-day counterparts.

    “Moslems [sic] may show splendid qualities. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the Queen: all know how to die: but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it.”

    But there are a few, now-censored remarks which would have Isis and Boko Haram nodding in agreement. “No stronger retrograde force [than Islam] exists in the world,” the great man announced, but “…Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step…” If it were not for Christianity, “sheltered in the strong arms of science,” then “the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome.” Ukip couldn’t better that.

    And Churchill was not alone among his contemporaries in denigrating the peoples of India and the Arab world. Politicians from India and Egypt impressed one of his fellow Europeans as “jabbering Orientals” and “mountebanks” who tried to convince Europe that the British Empire was about to collapse.

    “England will never lose India unless she gives way to racial confusion…,” he wrote. “Indian risings will never be successful… I…would far rather see India under British domination than that of any other nation.”

    These imperialist statements appear in Hitler’s Mein Kampf, whose English publishers, Hurst & Blackett, blurbed their 1938 edition with the advice that this is “a book everyone should read, for it reveals the forces and circumstances which went to make a remarkable character”.

    The trouble was that a lot of people did read Mein Kampf. The tragedy was that they didn’t take it seriously. Thanks be to God, therefore, that we had the author of The River War. My dad adored him so much that he persuaded Churchill to autograph the first volume of his Marlborough: His Life and Times. The book is beside me as I write these words. “Inscribed by Winston S Churchill 1948,” the Great Man wrote on the flyleaf. Volume Two got shorter shrift. “WSC” was all the old boy would give my dad there.

    Bill Fisk kept a massive, black-and-white photograph of Churchill above the fireplace at our old home in Maidstone; the 1940 Prime Minister glowering into the camera.

    When Bill died, my mum asked me if she could take the picture down. I agreed. I didn’t like Churchill very much, least of all after I wrote my PhD thesis on Ireland and WSC’s threats to invade the country during the Second World War when he declared that Eire was “at war but skulking”.

    But I was moved by Nicholas Soames’s comment that his grandfather was an “authentic” man – compared, at least, to the Cameron show which we had to watch last week as the current Prime Minister fawned over Churchill’s memory.

    As for Bill’s huge photograph, it has no place on my wall today. But I keep it still, in a little cupboard. You can’t throw Churchill away.


    Winston Churchill

    Islamophobe, racist, war criminal -

    What they don't tell us about him

    24 January 2015 was the 50th anniversary of Winston Churchill's death. The media was full of extensive features on 'England's greatest Englishman'. Here, poet Heathcote Williams provides the Winston Churchill history that is always glossed over in the hero worship.

    by Heathcote Williams - 25 January 2015

    Great Britain's Greatest Beast

    Those keen on heroes
    Often find they’ve feet of clay.
    Here’s one example:

    Someone who fought two world wars,
    England’s greatest Englishman,
    A national treasure
    Who rivals the Crown Jewels.
    Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill.

    Churchill had a school-friend
    Called Aubrey Herbert
    Who, in 1915, wrote in his diary,
    “Winston's name fills
    Everyone with rage.
    Roman emperors killed slaves to
    Make themselves popular,
    He is killing free men
    To make himself famous.”

    Churchill enjoyed war.

    “A curse should rest on me,” Churchill said,
    “Because I love this war. I know
    It's smashing and shattering
    The lives of thousands
    Every moment and yet I can't help it.
    I enjoy every second.”

    He wrote this during World War One –
    The war to end all wars –
    Whose unfinished business
    Led to World War Two.
    The so-called ‘Good war.’

    In World War One,
    Keen to acquire oil
    From Mesopotamia
    For British shipping,
    Churchill was happy
    To drop poison gas bombs on
    Iraqi tribesmen
    Who were objecting
    To wells dug in their desert
    To fuel Britain’s war;
    To fuel the ships
    That Churchill had decided would run
    Better on oil than on coal.

    “I don’t understand
    This squeamishness about the use
    Of gas”, Churchill would say.
    "I am strongly in favor of using poison gas
    Against uncivilized tribes."

    Because these “uncivilized tribes”
    Were holding up his plans
    They had to die.
    He implied they might be honored
    To die in a civilized cause –
    Their being so uncivilized.

    Little Englanders,
    As Orwell called petty-minded patriots,
    Become apoplectic when faced
    With the notion that Churchill’s views
    And those of Hitler overlap
    Both in relation to the use of gas,
    And in the elimination
    Of “inferior races”.

    "I do not admit,” Churchill said
    “That any great wrong has been done
    To the Red Indians
    Of America,
    Or the black people of Australia
    By the fact that a
    Stronger race,
    A higher grade race has come in
    And taken its place”

    Churchill said this in 1937 –
    And in the twenties and thirties
    He’d often let slip
    How much he admired both Hitler
    And Mussolini. Fascism
    Was no problem for him.
    It was the way to counteract
    “The virus of Leninism.”

    After Hitler came to power, Churchill proclaimed that
    "If our country were defeated, I hope we should find
    A champion as indomitable [as Hitler]
    To restore our courage and lead us back to our place
    Among the nations."
    And to Mussolini, whom he addressed
    In Rome on 20 January 1927, he declared:
    “I could not help being charmed, like so many other people have been, by Signor Mussolini’s gentle and simple bearing and by his calm, detached poise in spite of so many burdens and dangers. If I had been an Italian I am sure that I should have been whole-heartedly with you from the start to finish in your triumphant struggle against the bestial appetites and passions of Leninism.
    I will, however, say a word on an international aspect of fascism. Externally, your movement has rendered service to the whole world.”

    The Jews, by contrast, Churchill regarded
    As a “sinister confederacy… for the overthrow of civilization”
    In his book ‘Great Contemporaries,’
    Published in 1937, Churchill describes Hitler
    As “a highly competent, cool, well-informed functionary
    With an agreeable manner.”
    In the same book he savagely attacks Leon Trotsky.
    ‘What was wrong with Trotsky?’ He asked rhetorically.
    “He was still a Jew.” Churchill replied,
    “Nothing could get over that.”

    In peace, Churchill called troops
    To shoot striking miners dead
    At Tonypandy,
    So he’s not much loved
    By the Welsh.
    Nor by the Irish,
    In April 1904 he said,
    "I remain of the opinion
    That a separate parliament for Ireland
    Would be dangerous and impractical."
    Nor by the Indians:
    He worshipped the Raj,
    And he told General Smuts
    That he should have killed Gandhi,
    When Smuts had the chance.

    “I hate Indians.
    They are a beastly people with a beastly religion."
    Churchill played a part
    In the Bengal famine by
    Raising rice prices.
    The population
    Was thus reduced and the poor
    Were less burdensome.
    Seven million died.
    Churchill refused to send aid
    As they’d “breed like rabbits”.

    He and Bomber Harris,
    Firebombed innocent lives
    In Dresden, calling it
    “Terror-bombing”. –
    They were pleased at their discovery
    Of a new kind of war,
    Namely to kill civilians deliberately –
    To demoralize the enemy.
    (They burned five hundred thousand)
    For the sake of it.

    Churchill had asked for "suggestions
    How to blaze 600,000 refugees",
    And then he ordered the firebombing of Dresden
    As a "vicious payback" for the German bombing
    Of Coventry (which Churchill himself had allowed to burn
    Rather than reveal his access to the German codes).

    Later he’d ask himself, with a perverse pride,
    Against a background of burning bodies,
    ‘Are we beasts?”

    He was addicted to war.

    His first experience of it
    Was in Afghanistan.
    On September 12, 1897 his camp came under sniper fire.
    Churchill was having dinner
    With a Major-General Sir Bindon Blood
    When “a bullet hummed by overhead”.

    The incident strengthened Churchill’s view
    That a local Pashtun tribe, the Mohmands,
    Needed to be dealt with.
    “After today we begin to burn villages. Every one.
    And all who resist will be killed without quarter.
    The Mohmands need a lesson,
    And there is no doubt we are a very cruel people.”
    Such action was vital, Churchill argued,
    Because the Pashtuns “recognize superiority of race”.

    Churchill considered he’d failed
    In World War One,
    After he’d sent thousands
    To their deaths at Gallipoli, to no purpose,
    And at the Dardanelles, to no purpose,
    He was then sacked.
    Consequently he spent years
    Licking his wounds
    And seeking out an opportunity
    For a return march.

    In ‘Human Smoke’ Nicholson Baker
    Shows how complicit Churchill was
    In provoking World War Two:
    He bombed Berlin
    And then he kept asking de Gaulle
    ‘Why haven’t they bombed us yet?’
    He’d relish the London Blitz
    Just because it now warranted
    A great crack at the enemy,
    Not because he cared tuppence
    About defeating fascism.

    He enjoyed war.

    He enjoyed stabbing dervishes in the neck
    At the battle of Omdurman, and he said so.
    “I hate nobody except Hitler — but, that is professional.”
    In other words there was no great difference of opinion
    He just wanted to fight Hitler, or anyone.

    He wanted to kill Germans ,
    He wanted to kill Sudanese dervishes,
    He wanted to kill Afghanis
    He wanted to kill Arabs,
    And he wanted to kill Brits if necessary
    So long as he could claim victory
    And hear the roar of a crowd’s approval.
    As if war was a game –
    A blood, sweat and tears game
    Not a game of right and wrong.

    He cared nothing for the Jews whose genocide
    The war would arguably accelerate
    Churchill just got off on war.
    His moral compass was set
    Towards self-glorification,
    Even if it required fabrication.

    “In time of war,” Churchill said, “when truth is so precious, “it must be attended by a bodyguard of lies”
    And every imaginable lie has attended his life.
    A life fetishized by Tory devotees
    Who speak in hushed tones
    When they mention the name of their unholy fascist
    Who worshipped force, the deadlier the better.

    Churchill said, “I like a man who grins when he fights.”
    But his magniloquent language and the great claims
    Made for him conceal a squalid truth,
    That he’d loved war ever since he was a child
    When he’d studied the Blenheim Palace tapestries
    In which his ancestor, Marlborough,
    Was depicted slaughtering 30,000 Frenchmen
    And plundering Bavaria
    All because of an obscure squabble
    Over the Spanish succession.

    An unhappy boy in a Palace,
    Abandoned by a nymphomaniac mother
    Ignored by a syphilitic father,
    And silenced by a speech defect,
    Would sit in a long corridor transfixed,
    Hypnotized by massacres
    And would then spend his later life looking for battles
    To shine in, however many bodies he left in his wake.
    The Toryboy’s household god
    Who once said “Politics is almost as exciting as war“
    In other words a man excited by the deaths of millions.

    Towards the end of his life
    Something of his own enormity
    Must have visited him,
    For he’d curse what he’d call
    The “black dog of depression”
    Which was only relieved by
    Alcoholic self-medication –
    Pickling a brain whose troubled thoughts
    Could, in the end, only be subdued by a stroke;
    The oh so good man
    Who fought his oh so good war.

    By way of rebranding him,
    Churchill’s dark, brooding statue
    In Parliament Square
    Has had a green turf strip
    Surreally crown its bronze head
    Like a Mohican hair-cut,
    And red paint spills out of its mouth
    To symbolize the advocacy
    Of bloodletting
    By this uncivilized brute
    In the wars he so loved
    And so effusively praised.


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    4 ways American corporations are responsible for racial oppression

    Our entire capitalist system is rooted in slavery, yes, but the human rights abuses hardly end there

    JAN 22, 2015

    America is gradually, but unrelentingly, destroying part of itself. The facts to support this are well-documented, told in many ways from past to present.

    The most egregious example of Americide is our country’s treatment of African-Americans. Almost everyone agrees about the evils of slavery, once dismissed simply as a Peculiar Institution. But a debate goes on about reparations, with passionate arguments on both sides, ranging from a demand for a Reparations Superfund for jobs and education, to a claim that blacks actually benefited from slavery because of the years of ‘reparations’ received through poverty programs.

    Reparations opponents insist that there is no clear modern connection to the era of slavery. But there is a connection, and it’s exhibited in the many profitable corporations — manufacturers, banks, insurance, railroad — that had their roots in slavery. Reparations haven’t been paid, or, if they have been extended in the form of poverty programs, they haven’t worked. Standards of living for blacks have worsened relative to whites in the past half-century. Many of the modern-day practices of our free-market capitalist system are at least partly responsible for this.

    1. American Corporations Are Partly Responsible for the Sale of Human Beings

    Horace Greeley, Editor of the New York Tribune and an abolitionist, described a slave auction: “The negroes were examined with as little consideration as if they had been brutes indeed; the buyers pulling their mouths open to see their teeth, pinching their limbs to find how muscular they were, walking them up and down to detect any signs of lameness, making them stoop and bend in different ways that they might be certain there was no concealed rupture or wound..”

    The slaves on the auction block, 500 of them, stood nervously waiting as the buyers lit cigars and studied their log books, scanning the list of ‘chattel’ available to them, preparing to start the bidding. The facial expression of each slave stepping on the auction block was the same — anguish about an unknown future, despair at the thought of never again seeing their loved ones.

    The abject heartlessness of forever dividing families was captured by Mark Twain, when he sat on his front porch in 1874 and listened to his servant, Mary Ann Cord, whom the writer had come to know as “Aunt Rachel.”

    “Dey begin to sell my chil’en an’ take dem away, an’ I begin to cry; an’ de man say, ‘Shet up yo’ dam blubberin’,’ an’ hit me on de mouf wid his han’. An’ when de las’ one was gone but my little Henry, I grab’ him clost up to my breas’ so, an’ I ris up an’ says, ‘You shan’t take him away,’ I says; ‘I’ll kill de man dat tetch him!’ … But dey got him – dey got him, de men did.. ”

    Corporations linked to the present day had a lot to do with these slave sales:

    —-Wall Street: Banks made loans to slave owners, processed transactions through the New York Cotton Exchange, and held slave auctions outside their doors. JP Morgan, Bank of America, and Wachovia (Wells Fargo) admitted the roles of their predecessor banks.

    —-Manufacturing: The textile industry was so vital to northeastern states that the mayor of New York City turned against the Union, encouraging citizens to support “our aggrieved brethren of the Slave States.”

    —-Insurance: Companies like Aetna and New York Life issued policies protecting slaves as property.

    —-Railroad: Predecessors of the Norfolk Southern leased slaves for year-long terms of hard labor.

    2. American Corporations Are Partly Responsible for the First Vagrancy Laws

    These are the Pig Laws of a century or more ago, which penalized trivial – sometimes nonexistent – offenses, in a similar manner as the Broken Windows policies employed today. A ‘vagrancy’ offense got 22-year-old Green Cottenham arrested in 1908.

    Cottenham was sentenced to thirty days of hard labor. When he was unable to pay court fees, his sentence was extended to a full year, and he was sold to Tennessee Coal, a subsidiary of US Steel. The company forced him to live and work in a mineshaft deep in the cold, black earth, where he worked every day from 3 AM to 8 PM digging and loading tons of coal. If he slowed down he was whipped. He drank the water he was standing in. He was surrounded by pitch-dark caverns filled with poison gas and walls that often collapsed, crushing or suffocating miners. At night he was chained to a wooden barracks. Crazed men were always nearby, filthy and sweaty, some homicidal, some sexual predators. A boy from the Alabama countryside had been cast into the center of hell.

    —-US Steel, which absorbed Tennessee Coal, is one of the largest steel companies in the world, with over $17 billion in sales in 2013.

    3. American Corporations Are Partly Responsible for WW2 Slave Labor

    Slave labor in the Nazi years generated massive profits for many of our most prominent corporations.

    —-Ford Motors: Henry Ford, who had published ”The International Jew: The World’s Foremost Problem,” was a friend of Nazi Germany. His company used prison labor to produce a third of the military trucks for the German army. Ford’s German affiliate was called an “arsenal of Nazism.”

    —-General Motors worked with the German company that built Auschwitz.

    —-IBM was responsible for the punch card machines that allowed the Nazis to tabulate train shipments to the death camps.

    —-Numerous other companies were involved. General Electric partnered with a German company that used slave labor, and invested in the builder of gas chambers. Kodak used prison labor for the manufacture of German arms. Nestle admitted acquiring a company that used forced labor during the war.

    4. American Corporations Are Partly Responsible for Today’s Deadening Racial Oppression

    They may not be the mine shafts of Tennessee Coal, but modern private prisons such as Corrections Corporation of America and G4S generate massive profits, selling inmate labor to corporations like Chevron, Bank of America, AT&T, and IBM. Nearly a million prisoners work in factories and call centers for as little as 17 cents an hour.

    Black and white crime rates for drugs, weapons, and assault are approximately the same. Yet blacks are arrested for drug offenses at three times the rate of whites, and according to the Sentencing Project more than 60 percent of U.S. prisoners are minorities.

    As summarized by the Economic Policy Institute, society has chosen to use incarceration rather than education and job training to deal with racial economic issues.

    —-Little Earnings for Blacks: Corporate profits are at their highest level in at 85 years, yet S&P companies spent an incredible 95% of their profits on stock buybacks to enrich executives and shareholders.

    Corporations generally hire minority workers for low-wage jobs. Stunningly, over half of the black college graduates of recent years were underemployed in 2013, working in occupations that typically do not require a four-year college degree.

    It gets even worse for blacks, and then worse again. A 2003 Harvard/Chicago study found that job applicants were about 50 percent more likely to be called back if they had “white” names. Another study found that white job applicants with criminal records received more favorable treatment than blacks without criminal records.

    —-Fewer Educational Opportunities: Almost half of black kids are in poverty. Education is their best way out. Numerous studies have shown that with pre-school, all children achieve more and earn more through adulthood, with the most disadvantaged benefiting the most. But Head Start was recently hit with the worst cutbacks in its history.

    —-Poor Health, Slow Death: Many reputable studies have documented the link between financial stress and illness.

    Median black household wealth went down by 33.7 percent from 2010 to 2013, while median white household wealth actually increased. Black males are living over four years less than white males. Black women are four times as likely to die from pregnancy-related causes as white women.

    It’s all part of the gradual, unyielding, insidious process of a nation disposing of an unwanted part of itself.


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    The Hate Map of USA Highlights Hate Groups

    The hate map of the USA: From the KKK to black separatists, where America's 939 hate groups are based

    By Meghan Keneally - 3 March 2014

    A revealing new map has made it clear where hundreds of hate groups are based in the United States, showing how racist and radical groups are still largely found
    in the South but the number of groups has multiplied dramatically since President Obama took office.

    The Southern Poverty Law Center has released a 'hate map' last week which shows the national distribution of the various groups that they could confirm.

    The overall number of groups actually dropped from 1,007 in 2012 to 939 in 2013- the last full year with available data- but one of their more troubling observations is that some of the far-right leaning groups have had their ideologies picked up by conservative Republican politicians.

    ‘The idea that the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security, among others, is being plugged by U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.). Last November, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) suggested the president was using the Affordable Care Act as cover to set up a “secret security force,”’ the report states.

    ‘Earlier in 2013, U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas), echoing many Patriot groups, falsely claimed that a proposed United Nations arms treaty “set the stage for [gun] confiscation on a global scale.”’

    The SPLC, which focuses much of its work combating racist groups, said that the lack of clear legislative victories for the Obama administration on gun control in the wake of Sandy Hook and the upcoming immigration reform battle appear to have effectively calmed some of the far-right groups.

    ‘Those factors, along with the collapse or near-collapse of several major groups for a variety of reasons, seem to have taken some of the wind out of the sails of the radical right, leaving the movement both weaker and somewhat smaller,’ the report states.

    Many states have varying bands of hate groups, but for their map, the SPLC qualified them into eight categories:

    1. black separatist,
    2. neo-confederate,
    3. Christian identity,
    4. racist skinhead,
    5. white nationalist,
    6. neo-Nazi,
    7. Ku Klux Klan and
    8. General hate

    There is only one state- Hawaii- that has no known hate groups but a vast majority of the rest can be found below the Mason Dixon line.

    The 11 states that make up the area between Texas and the Atlantic are home to 589 of the 939 active groups that the SPLC identified- a whopping nearly 63 per cent.

    Though Florida hosts 58 groups and Texas has 57, they do not take the top slot this year.

    Growing trend: The number of hate groups jumps during Democratic administrations but particularly during that of President Obama

    Dropping slightly: The number of groups in the U.S. dropped from 1,007 in 2012 to 939 in 2013

    California actually made the top of the list, which comes as a bit of a surprise given the large immigrant population in the state and the fact that unlike the South, it does not have a history of slavery.

    Face of the uprising: Members of the National Socialist Movement are seen at a rally near Los Angeles, and like many far right groups, they are campaigning against immigration

    The California-based American Freedom Party that was originally founded by racist skinheads group in Southern California is one of the top two groups that the SPLC have flagged up as particularly threatening.

    They have stepped up their rhetoric against immigrants and in support of 'the interests of white Americans'.

    'They have for years, been running in political elections and haven't done all that well. They have however, recently gathered the top influential white supremacists to run their board and are becoming more aggressive about winning elections,' the report's author Mark Potok told Business Insider.

    The other group that has been cited as a cause for concern is Crew 41 which started online. They take aim at sex offenders and members of a South Carolina outpost allegedly shot and stabbed a middle aged couple after finding out that the husband was a registered sex offender.

    The trail of hate then returns to the south with Georgia, which has 50 known groups.

    From there the next portion of the list is found in the Northeast, with 44 groups in New Jersey, 42 in New York and 41 in Pennsylvania.

    The geographic composition of the map also shows how the groups tend to be found in or around cities. For instance, all but nine of New York’s 42 hate groups are found in and around New York City.

    Mr. Potok, said that the ideas behind the group also plays a role in their location.

    'Another thing to consider when analyzing this data is that certain hate groups reside in particular areas. The Klan will almost always be in rural areas whereas, the Black Separatists are mostly in the cities,' Mr. Potok told Business Insider.



    They themselves are immigrants or children of immigrants in this country yet they claim to fight immigration, especially of Mexicans to whom one-fourth of the USA used to belong to.

    Here’s a video of one of their rallies where a Native American passing by tells them that they are illegals and never were invited….after which they scatter like cockroaches

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    2015 Has Been an Ugly Year for the Treatment of Muslims in Texas

    March 10, 2015

    So far in 2015, it has been a scary year to be a Muslim Texan. That fact seems to have come to a head following the shooting of Ahmed Al-Jumaili, who was killed on Thursday in Dallas as he watched the three and a half inches of snow come down—the first snowfall the Iraqi immigrant had ever seen—around his apartment complex.

    The story attracted local attention in the days after it happened, with the Dallas Morning News reporting:

    Early Thursday morning, Ahmed al-Jumaili, 36, saw something new: snow in Dallas. He and his wife and her brother rushed out after midnight to take pictures, barely noticing a group of men—at least one of whom had a rifle—nearby.

    “Just like all of us, a pretty snowfall brings the child out in us,” Dallas police Maj. Jeff Cotner said. “You can just imagine the excitement between his wife and his brother and himself as they were enjoying the snowfall.”

    Moments later, the snow was stained by blood as al-Jumaili retreated to his far northeast Dallas apartment nursing a gunshot wound. He died at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.
    Police released new details about al-Jumaili and the slaying Friday, but they said they still have no leads and know of no motive for al-Jumaili’s seemingly random killing by two to four unidentified young men.

    The story failed to garner much major national attention over the weekend, until a post from Vox attempted to shame the Internet into caring. That post recalled a shooting last month in North Carolina, when three Muslims were killed in their apartment complex by a neighbor who shot them in the head, that similarly flew under the radar until an increase in media attention raised a debate about how to determine if a triple murder is a “hate crime” or just a dispute over parking. Vox argued:

    This is a silence that has accompanied the recent wave of hostility against Muslims in America. Just three weeks earlier, when a man in Chapel Hill gunned down three Muslim-American college students, it took a grassroots social media campaign—#MuslimLivesMatter—to compel coverage of murders that were initially treated as a “parking dispute,” and of the growing fear that Muslims are made to feel in this country.
    Yes, perhaps the murder will turn out to be unrelated to Al-Jumaili’s faith or background. It could have been a random attack, or even, as police say they are considering, an accident. But it seems odd that Americans, who pride themselves on inclusiveness and tolerance, would be so blithe and so uninterested that, in a time of increasingly overt hatred toward a minority group, yet another member of that group has been murdered for no apparent reason, in his third week in this country, while photographing snow with his wife.

    The post at Vox seemed to trigger widespread interest in Al-Jumaili’s killing. You can find stories from British outlets like The Independent and the Daily Mail now, as well as countless domestic sources. (Over at conservative blog Breitbart, a writer argued that Vox’s attempt to tie Al-Jumaili’s death into a “climate-of-hate” was ill-informed, since so little is known about the shooters at the moment.)
    Indeed, unless and until the shooters are found (the Dallas Police Department is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest, with another $7,000 from the Council on American–Islamic Relations’s Dallas–Fort Worth chapter), there’s no way to know what motivated the people who shot and killed Al-Jumaili. But given the way the past several weeks have played out for Muslim Texans, speculation isn’t unreasonable.In February the Houston Quba Islamic Institute was set on fire. A homeless man was arrested days later for starting the blaze and told police that it was an accident. Leaders at the mosque seem to be taking him at his word and have asked police to drop the arson charge against him. In Austin, meanwhile, one Central Texas representative made things uncomfortable for Muslim consituents in January. Representative Molly White, a Republican from Belton, attracted headlines on Texas Muslim Capitol Day—an event she didn’t attend—by declaring that Muslim visitors needed to pledge allegiance to be allowed into her office.

    “I did leave an Israeli flag on the reception desk in my office with instructions to staff to ask representatives from the Muslim community to renounce Islamic terrorist groups and publicly announce allegiance to America and our laws,” she posted on Facebook. “We will see how long they stay in my office.”

    That’s a trio of incidents within six weeks that could make anyone concerned for the safety and dignity of their Muslim neighbors. We hope that the man arrested for the fire at the Quba center in Houston did indeed start the blaze accidentally, with no intention to target the building; we can further hope that the person or people responsible for killing Ahmed Al-Jumaili did so for reasons unrelated to his religion, and that White’s humiliating demands of her Muslim constituents were a regretful blip in a career that otherwise aims to serve all Texans. But when so much happens all at once, it’s not unreasonable to hope that there are a lot fewer incidents like this in the future—and to pay close attention to these things when they do happen.


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    Anti-Sharia Laws: A Solution in Search of a Problem


    There is a growing trend in the states to ban the use of foreign and international law, including Sharia law, in state courts. At least seven states have enacted measures to prohibit their courts from considering foreign and international law and many others are considering such a ban. But despite the lofty rhetoric of supporters, these bans can do nothing that state law does not already do. The bans do not protect against the undue influence of foreign or international law upon our own domestic law and they do not protect against any real threat to individual rights. At their best, they are a solution in search of a problem. At their worst, however, they alienate politically unpopular groups and gratuitously condemn their beliefs.

    The trend started in Oklahoma when, in 2010, Oklahoma voters approved the "Save Our State" constitutional amendment. The amendment banned the use of international law and foreign law in Oklahoma courts; it singled out Sharia law for particular disapprobation. It provided that "[t]he courts shall not look to the legal precepts of other nations or cultures. Specifically, the courts shall not consider international law or Sharia law."

    The US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit roundly struck the amendment in Awad v. Ziriax [PDF]. The court ruled that the ban on Sharia violated the Establishment Clause because the ban discriminated among religions without a compelling interest—or without any interest, for that matter. Indeed, the court noted that defenders of the amendment could not identify a single instance when an Oklahoma court applied Sharia law or other foreign law, much less an instance when such application resulted in a concrete problem for the state. But even if the state could identify an interest, the court said that the amendment was so crude that it could not "closely fit" any interest, anyway. The plaintiff's case illustrated why: Awad claimed, among other things, that the ban on Sharia would prevent Oklahoma courts from probating his will, which contained references to Sharia law. Before the amendment, state courts would have probated Awad's will, including its references to Sharia, so long as it did not violate public policy. But after the amendment, the courts could not have considered Sharia law at all, even as part of Awad's will. It is hard to see how that result serves any purpose.

    If Awad's will does not persuade you, though, here is another example. Suppose a man and a woman were married in a country that recognizes marriages based on religious law. Suppose further that the marriage is unobjectionable as a matter of public policy. (For example, the marriage does not involve more than two people.) Now suppose that the couple moved to Oklahoma and tried to get the Oklahoma courts to recognize their marriage (for any number of different reasons that a marriage might be relevant under Oklahoma law). "Save Our State" would prohibit the courts from considering the foreign law under which the couple was married and by extension the marriage itself. Again: it is hard to see how that result serves any purpose.

    So advocates changed their strategy. They moved away from explicit bans on Sharia and introduced model legislation called American Laws for American Courts, or ALAC. ALAC sharpens the "Save Our State" model by limiting the ban to "foreign law" (and not specifically mentioning Sharia). It also limits the ban to those instances "when the application of a foreign law will result in the violation of a right guaranteed by the constitution of this state or of the United States ..." And it exempts corporations and religious organizations. ALAC affects the ban in a roundabout kind of way: it says that any court ruling that relies in whole or in part on any law that would grant the parties anything less than full state and US constitutional rights is a violation of public policy.

    But this is exactly why ALAC is a belt over state-law suspenders. State law already bans the use of extraterritorial law, including the law of other nations and the law of other states, when that law violates state public policy. In particular, the traditional rule of comity includes a public policy exception, which says that state courts do not grant comity when doing so would violate public policy. And of course it goes without saying that state courts cannot violate state or federal constitutional rights, whether they rely on domestic, foreign or international law. In other words, ALAC incorporated the qualifiers and exceptions that were necessary to navigate the legal and practical problems in "Save Our State." But those necessary qualifiers and exceptions ate up any substance that was in the ban in the first place. The whole experience of ALAC—its long and cumbersome qualifiers, its reaction to the court's ruling in Awad and its reaction to the practical problems created by a broadside ban on foreign law-is why a ban on foreign law is at best unnecessary.

    ALAC also pulls no weight in the important debates over the use of foreign and international law in US constitutional construction. Serious and thoughtful judges, scholars and lawyers disagree about the relevance of foreign and international law in interpreting and constructing the US Constitution. But ALAC contributes nothing to this debate, either directly or indirectly. (Indeed, when courts have used foreign or international law in US constitutional construction, they have used it to protect and enhance individual rights, not to limit them. That is ALAC's goal (or at least its stated goal), too.) In matters of constitutional construction, ALAC is at best irrelevant.

    But in truth ALAC is worse than unnecessary and irrelevant; it is harmful and divisive. That is because it contains the same gratuitous anti-Islam intention as "Save Our State." According to the American Public Policy Alliance, which spearheads ALAC, ALAC is designed as a bulwark against Sharia law in American courts, even if ALAC itself does not specifically mention Sharia. Yet for all the blustering, advocates for ALAC have yet to identify a single instance when a court has applied foreign law, including Sharia law, in a way that created problems. They have not even coherently explained how such problems might arise, especially in light of the existing public policy exception to the general comity rule.

    "Save Our States," ALAC and other attempts to restrict the use of foreign law in domestic courts are solutions in search of a problem. At their best, they do what the law already allows and requires. At their worst, they reveal an ugly underside of law and politics that seems calculated only to alienate and disempower certain disfavored peoples and to condemn certain disfavored faiths.


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    Hate Crimes Rise Along With Donald Trump’s Anti-Muslim Rhetoric


    A NEW REPORT published by Georgetown University’s Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding has documented an upsurge in violence against Muslims in the United States coinciding with the 2016 election campaign.

    The major uptick in hate crimes dates back toward the end of 2015, which corresponds with Donald Trump’s call for a ban on Muslims entering the United States — but also with other possibly inciting factors such as the San Bernardino shooting and intensified political debate over the Syrian refugee crisis.

    “Our data suggests that acts and threats of anti-Muslim violence increased in 2015, and that it has escalated further during the presidential election season,” said Engy Abdelkader, a member of the U.S. State Department Religion and Foreign Policy Working Group and the author of the report.

    The FBI has not released its own figures for anti-Muslim hate crimes in 2015. But in recent months a number of government officials andcivil society leaders have raised the possibility that the incendiary tone of the election could lead to violence. In President Barack Obama’s first visit to a mosque earlier this year, he too cited the potential dangers posed by statements and proposals being made by many GOP presidential candidates. Referring to the “inexcusable political rhetoric” that has characterized the campaign, Obama said that it was no surprise that “threats and harassment of Muslim Americans have surged.”

    The report cites 180 reported incidents of anti-Muslim violence during the period between March 2015 and March 2016. Among these were 12 murders; 34 physical assaults; 56 acts of vandalisms or destruction of property; nine arsons; and eight shootings and bombings. Among the incidents noted were the murders of three university students in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, the murder of an Iranian-American in California by a white supremacist, and a road-rage incident in Houston in which a Palestinian-American man was killed by a man who told him to “go back to Islam.”

    “Many thought that last year’s execution-style murders of three American Muslim youth in North Carolina was exceptional in nature, but there have been a spate of similar murders this past year, many of which have escaped the public’s attention,” Abdelkader said. “They speak directly to the increasingly violent nature of Islamophobia – it’s not just employment discrimination, it’s not just bullying in schools. Islamophobia now has lethal effects.”

    Trump has only grown more comfortable engaging in anti-Muslim rhetoric as his popular support has risen. In a speech last week, he repeated a mythical anecdote about American soldiers executing Muslim prisoners using bullets dipped in pig’s blood during the Philippine-American War. The fictional war crime, which Trump cited as an example of effective counterterrorism policy, has become one of the presidential hopeful’s favorite talking points.

    While Trump’s rhetoric has appalled many, his supporters have responded to it with enthusiasm. Polls have shown that large majorities of Republican primary voters endorse his plan to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the United States. His success also emboldened former rivals like Ted Cruz to put forth their own anti-Muslim policies.

    “This report throws into sharper relief the relationship between anti-Muslim rhetoric and acts or threats of violence targeting the American Muslim community,” said Nathan Lean, a researcher on the report and author of the book The Islamophobia Industry. “It’s important to note, of course, that correlation does not necessarily equal causation. But in an election climate such as this, we must acknowledge the potential wide-ranging consequences of stigmatizing and politicizing an already-vulnerable minority group.”

    Critics say Trump’s proposals to ban Muslims, deport undocumented immigrants, and build a wall along the border with Mexico are also laying the groundwork for eroding American democracy more broadly.

    “This kind of rhetoric makes us all less safe and less free, because it feeds us fear,” said Dalia Mogahed, director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, a think tank. “Fear of imagined enemies within makes us more accepting of authoritarianism, conformity, and prejudice, and poses a real threat to our democracy in the long term.”

    Some have also grown frustrated at the lack of attention paid to the violence that anti-Muslim rhetoric is fomenting in the United States. “I don’t see what the problem is. It’s not like Islam is a race,” Haroon Moghul, a senior fellow at the Center for Global Policy noted caustically. “Attacking people for the color of their skin — now that would be a problem. It’s a good thing we don’t have any of that in America.”

    The report, titled “When Islamophobia Turns Violent: The 2016 Election Campaign,” was conducted by the Bridge Initiative, an academic research project at Georgetown focusing on Islamophobia.


  20. #20
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    Jan 2007


    Donald Trump Proposes Banning Immigrants Based on Ideology, But Bush and Obama Got There First

    Donald Trump’s plan to apply an “ideological screening test” on would-be immigrants has been denounced as “un-American,” and “a nonstarter.” But the U.S. government already can and does bar immigration on ideological grounds – and has abused that power.

    In addition to dramatically expanding government surveillance, the Patriot Act passed by Congress soon after the 9/11 terror attacks allows the State Department to exclude anyone who it determines “undermines the United States efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorist activities.”

    The Bush administration used that power to deny entry to leftist activists and administration critics. The list of those denied visas includes South African anti-apartheid activist Adam Habib, Greek economist Yoannis Milios, Nicaraguan reformist and academic Dora Maria Tellez, Bolivian scholar Waskar Ari, and English hip-hop singer M.I.A, — just to name a few.

    In 2004, the Bush administration denied entry to Tariq Ramadan, an internationally renowned scholar of Islam and prominent Iraq war critic, who had accepted a tenured position at the University of Notre Dame. Two years later, the ACLU filed suit on behalf of Ramadan — and won — after the government failed to demonstrate any terrorism connection.

    But the court did not rule on whether the section of the Patriot Act is constitutional, and it remains on the books to this day.

    The Obama administration has also blocked people of certain viewpoints from entering the United States. In 2011, the State Department denied a visa for Kermin Yeldiz, a prominent Kurdish rights activist who lives in Britain and was traveling to the United States to accept an award. After the ACLU and PEN sent a joint letter of protest, the State Department issued Yeldiz a visa.

    In 2013, Palestinian film director Emad Burnat was detained in the Los Angeles Airport, and threatened with deportation. He was allowed to enter the United States after security learned he was on his way to the Oscars.

    Trump’s proposal would go much further, of course. Trump is calling for every immigrant to be given an actual test, to screen out not only “sympathizers of terrorist groups,” but anyone with “hostile attitudes towards our country and its principles.”

    Trump also suggested he was a fan of the McCarran-Walter Act. “In the Cold War, we had an ideological screening test. The time is overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today,” Trump said Monday.

    After it was passed in 1952, the act quickly became a tool to bar leftist intellectuals and peace activists — including Palestinian poet Mahmood Darwish and Nobel-laureate authors Carlos Fuentes and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. In the 1950s, the U.S. even blocked Pierre Trudeau, a progressive intellectual from Canada who went on to become the country’s prime minister in 1968.

    Civil liberties advocates have promised to fight any return to Cold War era policies of exclusion.

    “It would raise serious concerns if the government were to decide on a list of acceptable viewpoints, thoughts, and beliefs for Americans, and exclude anyone who failed to conform,” said Dror Ladin, an attorney with the ACLU’s National Security Project, in an email to The Intercept.

    Trump’s proposal was greeted with widespread condemnation — and mockery — with some critics saying Trump would not pass his own test. Hillary Clinton released an ad highlighting his past proposal to ban Muslims, his racial comments about a Mexican judge, and his refusal to denounce David Duke, the former grand wizard of the KKK.



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