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Roger L. Simon

Welcome to Berlin, 1937

October 30th, 2014 - 10:26 pm

I have never in my increasingly long life felt vulnerable as a Jew in America.  I never even dreamed it would happen.  But it has now — with the Obama administration.

Something is seriously wrong. At almost every opportunity, Obama and his minions have criticized Israel out of all proportion to the actions of the Jewish state, particularly during the recent Gaza War when there was a constant barrage of warnings from our State Department about harming civilians. (This is a criticism State would never turn on itself. Who knows how many innocents have died in the U.S. air attacks on ISIS — no one even says a word about it.)

Now they have called Israel’s prime minister a “chickensh*t,” a “coward”  and who knows what else, using adjectives for Benjamin Netanyahu they don’t employ with Kim Jung-un, Vladimir Putin, Hassan Nasrallah, Bashar Assad or even the murderous Islamic State’s al-Baghdadi, not to mention — and this is probably crucial — the potentially most homicidal of all, Ayatollah Khamenei of the Islamic State of Iran. (One of the more sinister aspects of Jeff Goldberg’s article that generated this controversy was that one of his  leakers bragged they had scared cowardly Netanyahu into not attacking Iran’s nuclear installations, as if this were a good thing, the implication being that the administration can now look good for making an Iran deal — that would ultimately give the mullahs the bomb.)  It’s as if Netanyahu, not the aforementioned maniacs, were the administration’s worst enemy.

Meanwhile, the attempts to make nice to the Israelis over the vicious personal slurs from the article, which apparently came from two high and thus far unpunished administration officials, have been perfunctory, so perfunctory that you know they are not meant to be taken seriously, quite the contrary.  In fact, an attempted terrorist assassination of a prominent American-Israeli in Jerusalem yesterday that caused the Israeli government to put the Temple Mount on lockdown has already generated more chastisement of the Israelis from our secretary of State.  All this against an unprecedented, at least since World War II, rise in global anti-Semitism.

The administration claims  to be making these “constructive” criticisms for Israel’s sake, but the Jewish state has better allies in Egypt and Saudi Arabia than they do in an Obama administration that seems to prefer Islamofascist Qatar — those same oil sheiks that bankroll Hamas, the terror organization whose charter exhorts all Muslims to kill every Jew hiding behind a tree anywhere in the world.

And you wonder why I feel like I’m living in Berlin in 1937.

Well, I do.

You will excuse me if I think my Jewish American friends that vote Democratic every year by rote are a bit sick.  I have tried to have patience with them for about a decade, tried to persuade them with reason, but now I think they’re… well, there’s an excellent Yiddish word…  ferkochta.  Or suffering from  a Stockholm Syndrome so massive it wouldn’t fit in all the Volvo factories in Sweden.

Yes, I know many of those same people don’t give a sh*t, chicken or otherwise, about Israel — or if they do they are highly critical of everything about it, think it’s an apartheid state, yaddayaddayadda.  (Don’t ask them to define apartheid, however.)  I will just remind those same “progressive” people that there were plenty of German Jews who felt pretty much  as they do back in, ahem, 1937.

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In an already much talked about article for The Atlantic, “The Crisis in U. S. – Israeli Relations is Officially Here,” Jeffrey Goldberg quotes a senior administration official accusing  Benjamin Netanyahu – among a long list of unpleasant things — of being a “chickensh*t.”

Never mind for a moment the absurdity of an (of course anonymous) Obama official calling the Israeli PM a coward when Netanyahu has been personally under fire in two wars, volunteering for the second after having been wounded by a gun shot in the first (his brother, as many will remember, was killed during the raid on Entebbe — both Netanyahus were in Sayeret Matkal) at approximately the time the official’s boss Barry was lulling on a balmy Hawaiian beach smoking “choom” with his gang. What’s the right word for this?  Hypocrisy is a bit weak, isn’t it?  Or is it simply the desperate rumblings of a failed administration?

In any case, Goldberg was a “good boy” for transmitting it and I hope he gets another opportunity for a “hard-hitting” interview with POTUS. I further hope the author achieves his ambition and restrains those bellicose Israelis from renting or buying apartments in Arab East Jerusalem.  After all, the Arab countries have been so welcoming to their Jewish populations. Oh, wait… they’re Judenrein, barely a single Jew in evidence.  And Abu Mazen has refused ever to have Jews living within a future Palestinian state. My mistake.  Never mind again.  I’m sure Goldberg omitted all this by accident.

Actually, ninety percent of his article is on the level of dog bites man.  We all know Obama et al don’t like the Israelis, not just their prime minister and his supposedly loose-lipped defense minister Yaalon, and probably a whole host of other officials of the Jewish state, not to mention a vast percentage of the Israeli populace. This opprobrium on Obama’s part has been going on for a long time, even before he took office.  (Remember the still mysterious Khalidi tape?)

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The Big ‘Lone Wolf’ Dodge

October 26th, 2014 - 11:14 pm

The current breakout of supposed “lone wolves,” like the absurd “workplace violence” euphemism, is yet another example of the Obama administration attempting to distract the public from the issues, in this case the most important issue of all, the continuing and growing global spread of violent Islamic ideology.

Blame anything but Islam as the cause of a problem and instruct the FBI, our intelligence agencies and, alas, even our military always to do the same. Call it “lone wolves,” “workplace violence,” or even “the man in the moon.” Call it anything you want — just don’t use the I-word.

But that’s very point, isn’t it? There wouldn’t be any “lone wolves,” assuming that’s what they are, were there not an Islam to make them feel not alone. You don’t see “lone wolves” adhering to another religion or ideology. Those guys up in Canada and the New York nut case with the hatchet, they weren’t spouting Mahayana Buddhism or Zoroastrianism or the Book of Mormon or the Book of Mark or the Bhagavad Gita or Kabbalah or even, these days, Marxism-Leninism-Mao-Tse-tung thought… or have I missed something?

So our so-called protective agencies — foreign and domestic — living in this PC nightmare, don’t even get to ask the most obvious operative questions such as: Just what is it about Islam that attracts these people? (Can you imagine the discontent this creates inside the FBI, intel agencies and especially the military? The memoirs are just beginning.)

This isn’t new, of course. This bowdlerizing approach toward Islam goes back to poor decisions made during the Bush administration, but they have been doubled-down on and squared by the current one. In fact, Obama’s contention that the Islamic State — and therefore the myriad other extremist groups who differ only slightly from ISIS, if at all — is not Islamic may be one of the most fateful lies ever told by an American president. It’s patently obvious these groups act under a literal interpretation of Islam’s holy writings. To deny that these groups — who may attract as many as a hundred million active participants and fellow travelers — are not at the very least a substantial part of Islam is to paper over that the religion itself is in drastic need of a reformation. And what about the rest of Islam, the other nine hundred million of so-called moderate Muslims, who seem to stand around doing nothing — rarely, if ever, protesting and never demonstrating — while their more extreme brethren rape, behead and pillage? At this point, the reformation of Islam is probably necessary for the survival of humanity.

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Only eight days ago,  October 15, I wrote a piece asking “Could It Possibly Get Any Worse?”  Although I was only half-serious and thought I was just being intentionally hyperbolic, it already did!

Today, in my birth city of New York, within hours of each other, we had a doctor come down with Ebola and another quasi-Islamo-lunatic bash a cop in the head with a hatchet, only a day after a similar event in Canada.

The most amazing part of the cop attack was, at approximately 7PM West Coast time, after millions of people had been hearing about it on cable television for hours, according to Ed Henry on Fox, an administration spokesperson didn’t even know it had happened.  They’re probably waiting to make sure it’s “workplace violence.”

Meanwhile, the infected doctor, who had just returned from treating Ebola patients in Guinea, had been riding the subway only hours before being diagnosed.  He had also gone bowling.  Was that part of the latest CDC protocol or the pilot for a television series — “Bowling for Ebola”?  In this new reality show/game you have to guess which ball doesn’t have infected fluids from the previous contestant inside its little holes.   The winner gets to go on but the loser, well… you know…

It’s all very reassuring, no?

Okay, no more Mr. Nice Blogger.  Anyone who doesn’t realize our country is being governed by incompetents somewhere between Caligula and Nero (with golf replacing the violin) hasn’t been paying the slightest attention or, as many liberals are these days, is so delusional they are willing to sacrifice their children in a manner that would make even Aztecs recoil. Those latter people are what is known as “progressives,” a term so distorted and misapplied it could destroy the English language all by itself.

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The Great ‘Workplace Violence’ Epidemic

October 22nd, 2014 - 7:39 pm
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“Look..a workplace!”

As if Ebola were not serious enough, a new, and perhaps more lethal, epidemic appears to be spreading throughout the world from the Middle East to North America.  It goes under the rubric “workplace violence.”

The possibility of such an epidemic first came to our attention in November 2009 when Major Nidal Malik Hasan – an Army psychiatrist who corresponded with the late Yemen-based imam Anwar Al-Awlaki and who lectured his fellow doctors on jihad — shouted “Allah Akbhar” and fatally shot 13 people, injuring 30 others, at Ft. Hood, near Killeen, Texas.  The U.S. Department of Defense and federal law enforcement agencies  classified the shootings as acts of “workplace violence.”

(Some scholars, however, say the first true instance of “workplace violence” was the September 11, 2001 aviation incident at the World Trade Center, since the vast majority of the people in those structures were at work.  Calling this a terror attack was a misnomer instigated by Islamophobes.)

For a few years, the potential epidemic seemed to be in abeyance but of late there have been disturbing signs of a resurgence.  And then, this September, Alton Nolan, a young man in Moore, Oklahoma, who, for his hobby, liked to post photos of beheadings of Americans by the Islamic State on Facebook and had been a student of Islam during his prison term (aka most of his adult life),  shouted jihadist imprecations in Arabic while himself beheading a 54-year old female co-worker on the very day he was fired.  There you have it — “workplace violence” at its purest was back.

And now, with that outbreak, several other instances of “workplace violence,” past and present, have come to light.

Now as we all know, such epidemics do not respect borders.  So this week there have been two further outbreaks of “workplace violence” among our Canadian friends, resulting in the deaths of their soldiers who were, needless to say, at work.  Furthermore, the Islamic terrorist… oops, I meant “the alleged perpetrator of workplace violence”… had been about to assassinate numerous public officials in their parliament who were, you guessed it, also at work.

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Ebola? It’s the VIDEO!

October 17th, 2014 - 8:28 pm

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How could it be otherwise? Who else but Susan Rice should the new Ebola czar be reporting to? After all, as we all know, there would not be such a disease were it not for that noxious video.

You know the one I mean — the one that shows a Tea Party member covertly implanting the virus in Darkest Africa so no one would suspect they were really planning on exporting it to the USA.

Didn’t you always wonder what happened to Andrew Breitbart, how he died so young? He’s still alive, secretly spreading the disease to hurt Barack Obama’s poll numbers. Not only that — he’s behind ISIS. Haven’t you seen their videos? Way too professional to be made in Araby. And all that social media manipulation? How’re they doing that? Definitely Breitbart.

Susan Rice will reveal all this on the Sunday shows, as she always does. The truth at last.

All those liberals and progressives who were worried their hero had run off the rails should relax. The Daily News should buy up all those editions with the GET A GRIP headline and burn them. Everything is back in order. Susan Rice is on the case.

And all you people that think the Obama administration is too insular, chill. How many real friends do you have? Most people have three or four at most, same as Barack. He’s got Valerie, Susan and… well, Michelle. Sometimes, anyway. That’s enough. More people gets confusing. We all know the expression “too many cooks….”

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Could It Possibly Get Any Worse?

October 15th, 2014 - 6:07 pm

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Let’s review:

The stock market is in free fall.

The Islamic State is on the brink of taking Baghdad and Kobani.

The Ebola crisis is spreading and seems on the verge of becoming a pandemic while the CDC is being unmasked as incompetent.

The Iran talks are a charade and everyone expects that country to get the bomb.

Our vaunted college campuses are transfixed by so-called micro-agressions and a supposed rape epidemic while banning the likes of Ayaan Hirsi Ali and George Will (!) from speaking — and they still cost nearly $70,000 a year.

Our putative ally Turkey — you know, those guys who mass murdered the Armenians but never recanted and have a president who thinks democracy is just a pit stop on the way to totalitarianism, but are still “treasured” members of NATO — are not helping the “coalition” but instead bombing the Kurds, virtually the only good guys in the neighborhood.

Donor nations — including the ever popular Qatar — are giving over 5 billion dollars to rebuild Gaza with no discernible penalties for Hamas and virtually no way of preventing the terror organization from rearming (they have already started) and reconstructing their tunnel system under Israel. Meanwhile, the UK, UN, Sweden and nearly everybody else are blaming the Jewish state for practically everything, with anti-Semitism more prevalent almost everywhere than since the 1930s.

Putin has already taken a good swathe of Ukraine, including Crimea, and is licking his chops for the rest of Eastern Europe. The Soviet Union is back and China is on the rise.

Europe is on the verge of recession. Even Germany appears to be stagnating.

The U.S. has its lowest labor participation rate since women went to work. The middle class is consistently losing ground.

Race relations in the U.S. seem to have gone backwards fifty years in the last six, African Americans overwhelmed with victimology and picking on cops before there is any evidence. Critics of the president are constantly accused of racism. Seventy percent of black children are born out of wedlock.

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It’s hard to tell what’s happening in the battle against the Islamic State or ISIL, as the administration insists on calling it. (They seem to have spent as much time deciding which acronym to use as how to fight the terror organization/state.)  As I write, the Daily Mail reports ISIS toe-to-toe with Kurdish fighters in Kobane with Turkey (not surprisingly) refusing to step in.  U.S. — or should I say coalition — bombings continue.

But we don’t know much — hardly anything about the bombing, who was hit, how much damage, collateral or otherwise, occurred. Have there been civilian casualties?  How many?

Compare this to a few weeks ago and the non-stop coverage of the Gaza War.  Almost every day we had reports on the supposedly huge civilian toll from Israeli attacks coupled with admonishment from  State Department porte-paroles Jen Psaki and Marie Harf that Israel should restrain itself, implying, of course, that the Jewish state was being excessive in defending itself against Hamas. Psaki, Harf and others repeatedly warned Israel that they were harming too many “innocent” civilians even though those civilians had been put there as human shields by their terrorist adversaries.  Death and wounded statistics provided by Hamas and then parroted by the UN were almost always accepted at face value by the mouth pieces of our government.

Barack Obama gets no such treatment.  Weeks into the bombing of ISIL, we know next to nothing.  The reportage is vague at best.  Some, like the left-wing UK Independent, say Obama’s strategy has been a fiasco.  Who knows?  Unlike Hamas, which has always exploited human shields to the hilt for propaganda purposes, ISIL prefers to keep reporters out (or slice their heads off) and employ social media for publicity and recruitment purposes.  But still the bombs fall and innocents and not-so-innocents die or get maimed for life.

So why does the State Department blame Israel for using excessive force, even though the IDF appears to make even more effort than  the U.S. Army or Air Force to avoid civilian casualties?  Why does it judge Israel by a different standard from the U.S. — or anybody, for that matter?

Answering that question is not  pleasant for me.  Back when I was a high school kid, I used to hear, off to the side, that the State Department was anti-Semitic. I tried to ignore it.  I was always a patriotic American and didn’t want to hear that my own government would be like that.  There were bad politicians, sure, but not such horrible institutional bigotry. That was a thing of the past.

I was wrong. The anti-Semitism is entrenched in a way that even, maybe especially, the principals themselves do not understand.  I’m sure young women like Harf and Psaki have had plenty of Jewish friends growing up.  After all, even their boss Secretary Kerry has Jewish blood, although he only realized that late in life from a newspaper report while running for public office. (No comment.)

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What Happens if Republicans Win?

October 9th, 2014 - 9:39 pm

It’s  time for Republicans to give serious thought to what happens if they win the Senate and House this November, as it looks increasingly that they will. While not exactly Pyrrhic,  this victory will present a whole range of potential problems and traps that could negatively affect this country’s future and the world.  And as we know, we are living in precarious times.

Barack Obama is a man unaccustomed to losing.  Life has been exceptionally kind to him, sailing, as he did, through balmy Oahu sunsets, college, law school and career on into the presidency with scarcely a bump. He has been a protected man  beyond any in recent memory, feted and praised virtually everywhere he went until the last couple of years. Even now, despite catastrophe after catastrophe, there are acolytes who continue to celebrate him, paying tens of thousands merely to have their photographs taken with him.

When such cosseted people are forced to confront failure, they typically do not do so with grace.  They are rarely able to admit  fault, as if even a crack in their pristine facades could lead to extreme personality disintegration. We have already seen manifestations of this in Obama’s refusal to acknowledge something so obvious as his own inability to foresee the dangers of ISIS, aka the JV team.   Insider books by Robert Gates, Hillary Clinton and Leon Panetta have appeared in rapid succession, implying or directly alleging that the president lives in a bubble, unwilling to listen to advice. He frequently threatens to — and sometimes does — go around the Congress to get his way via, often unconstitutional, executive fiat.  We all know that he lies, constantly.

This man is angry but highly unlikely to go into an anger management program.  Imagine what will happen after November.  We could be looking at behavior that would fit the very definition of “acting out,” anti-social but on a global scale.  And he still has two more years in office.

Do I exaggerate?  I hope so, but I fear not.  We have to be alert. Anything could happen. Remember:  Obama is currently fighting ISIS against his will and only for electoral purposes.  When the election is over, and  especially if he loses, all bets are off. The man who made the apology tour throughout the Islamic world and was best friends with Islamists Morsi and Erdogan could reappear as never before. What that could mean could be any number of things, but none of them good. The Global War on Terror could become another example of “work-place violence” in an instant. Kurds and Israelis better beware.

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Leon Panetta—Hero or Villain?

October 7th, 2014 - 9:04 pm
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Then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta addressing a luncheon at the National Press Club, December 18, 2012 in Washington, DC. Photo by Albert H. Teich / Shutterstock.com.

Former CIA director and SecDef Leon Panetta has been all over television the last couple of days, from the Today show to The O’Reilly Factor,  flogging his new book Worthy Fights.  He has been saying  a lot of bad things about Obama and his administration — the weakness vis-a-vis ISIS and Islamic terrorism in general, the absurd pretense that al-Qaeda (and consequently Islamic extremism) had been defeated,  the prevarications (polite term) about Benghazi, etc. — that many of us, to say the least, rather strongly suspected.

He has appeared extremely worried about the future of our country and the world, as he well should be.  And all of this has been given extra gravitas because Mr. Panetta was very much an insider to nearly all the important foreign policy decisions until recently.  He was there.

It’s good that we know all this, or some of it, now, but I must ask the obvious question that even Bill O’Reilly omitted — or felt it impolite to ask.  Mr. Panetta, why didn’t you do something about it at the time?  Yes, I know you made your pitch — as you say others did — and the president just couldn’t be moved.  But if that was the case, why did you stay there?  Why didn’t you quit, leave this administration that was doing nearly everything wrong and hurting our country and the world, when it became increasingly obvious that you couldn’t change it, change him?  Wouldn’t that have been the patriotic thing, to do something before it is too late?  Because now, it may actually be… too late.

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