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Roger L. Simon

After Paris, Will Obama Continue to Close Gitmo?

January 7th, 2015 - 5:40 pm

Of all the lies Barack Obama has told — and they are almost uncountable, in the thirties on Obamacare alone — by far the most dangerous for you, dear reader, and for almost anyone in the Western world, are the statements he has made about Islamic terror (when he has even admitted it existed). How many times has he told us that al-Qaeda was defeated or on the run? Or that ISIS — now in control of territory the size of Indiana and initiating educational systems for six year olds while turning scores of women into sex slaves — is the jayvee team?

How ridiculous, even obscene, that seems after Tuesday’s events in Paris — especially since the terrorists were evidently trained Islamists, one of them, Cherif Kouachi, having been convicted of terrorism in 2008 and sentenced to 18 months in prison. He emerged to murder a dozen people and maim a dozen more, some of them evidently seriously.

Nevertheless, Obama’s own house organ, the New York Times, tells us that POTUS is working overtime (and secretly) to close the military prison in Guantanamo:

In a series of secret nighttime flights in the last two months, the Obama administration made more progress toward the president’s goal of emptying the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, than it had since 2009. The accelerated pace came after an era of political infighting and long bureaucratic delays.

Now 127 prisoners remain at Guantánamo, down from 680 in 2003, and the Pentagon is ready to release two more groups of prisoners in the next two weeks; officials will not provide a specific number. President Obama’s goal in the last two years of his presidency is to deplete the Guantánamo prison to the point where it houses 60 to 80 people and keeping it open no longer makes economic sense.

Economic sense? Another lie. When did Obama care about that? But more importantly, just who is being released here? Another Cherif Kouachi?

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Paris: Islam Strikes Again

January 7th, 2015 - 9:13 am

After the brutal mass murders at the office of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris, the airwaves and  the Internet are filled with pundits and “experts” wondering whether this horrendous act is the work of al-Qaeda, ISIS or were these evil maniacs “self-radicalized,” as the new phrase goes.

I have news for them – there is no difference!  Al-Qaeda, ISIS and the Muslim man on the street all work from the same play books; they need no outside advice.  And those play books are the holy texts of Islam, the Koran and the Hadith.  All you need to know is there.

Egypt’s el-Sisi is right.  Islam is in desperate need of a reformation, because right now it is not even a religion.  It is a virus.

What the world should do now is nothing short of an intervention, just how we would treat a drug addicted or alcoholic relative.  Unfortunately, given the terrified international leadership, that isn’t in the offing.  They are more likely to call the murder at Charlie Hebdo “workplace violence,” as ludicrous as that sounds and is.

Meanwhile, one of the terms that should have been shot dead with these is murders as well is “Islamophobia.”  From Hamas to ISIS to the Paris psychopaths, anyone who does not fear Islam is irrational, not the other way around.  I fear Islam because I criticize it frequently.  Some religious nutcase could run through my door and shoot me and my family at any time. It’s the simple truth.  The folks at Charlie Hebdo are my brothers and sisters and I grieve for them.

I am reminded of a trip I took to Paris not long ago when I visited the Islamic communities in the bainlieu (suburbs) of that city.   It was as if I were in another country.  Most of the women were in purdah.  Not a French policeman was in sight.  I was instructed by my companions not to speak English but to speak French.

Who knows where this will all lead, but is undoubtedly no place good.  If the world doesn’t take the reformation of Islam seriously, we will back to the Middle Ages — fast.

There is no “War on Terror.”  That’s the silliest term to come down the pike in a long time, completely nonsensical.  We are in a war of civilizations — plain and simple.



The mainstream media silence on Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s historic New Year’s speech in Cairo calling for an Islamic reformation, reported here several days ago, has finally been broken by CNN International. (The New York Times, Washington Post,  and even the Wall Street Journal have not deigned to mention it yet despite the PJ Media reportage being linked twice by Real Clear World.)  From CNN:

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has called for a “religious revolution,” asking Muslim leaders to help in the fight against extremism.

In a speech celebrating the birthday of the Prophet Muḥammad, which coincided with New Year’s Day, he said they had no time to lose.

“I say and repeat, again, that we are in need of a religious revolution. You imams are responsible before Allah. The entire world is waiting on you. The entire world is waiting for your word … because the Islamic world is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost. And it is being lost by our own hands,” el-Sisi said.

“We need a revolution of the self, a revolution of consciousness and ethics to rebuild the Egyptian person — a person that our country will need in the near future,” the President said.

Not surprisingly, CNN goes on to quote a naysayer,  H. A. Hellyer of the Brookings Institute, to throw some traditional liberal water on the whole event, but to the network’s credit it concludes by reporting another surprising action by the Egyptian president:

On Tuesday, the President visited the main Coptic cathedral in Cairo to attend a Christmas mass and make a short speech. He is the first president to attend such a mass since the revolution.

“We will build our country together. We will accommodate each other. We will love each other,” el-Sisi said in that speech.

That’s pretty radical stuff in a country where many Coptic churches have been burned and Christians encouraged to flee the country.  The Jewish Press has more on this story (as well as a photo of a smiling el-Sisi welcoming the Israeli ambassador in Cairo).

Sisi’s attendance at the religious service was preceded by a heavy security presence, especially due to prior attacks on Christian sites by radical Islamists.

The president congratulated Egypt’s Coptic community on the occasion of the holiday, and maintained that all Egyptians are as “one hand.”

As “one hand”? New York’s Mayor Bill de Blasio should take lessons in graciousness from el-Sisi.

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“Dammit Bill, you swore to me you were quitting!”

Say all you want about The National Enquirer, but Democrats of all people should know the scandal rag is one of the few places that does any honest investigative journalism anymore — or even can afford to. Don’t believe me? How do you spell John Edwards? The folks at the New York Times are still trying to get that one right.

Now the Enquirer has another hot story: “Bill Clinton Underage Sex Lawsuit Shocker!” It begins in the mag’s inimitable prose:

Bill Clinton has been identified in a sex lawsuit involving underage girls – and the sleazy scandal threatens to blow up his wife Hillary’s bid to be president!

In a bombshell exclusive, The ENQUIRER has obtained shocking court documents that reveal details of Bill’s close relationship with billionaire money manager Jeffrey Epstein, a convicted sex creep.

According to the legal papers, Clinton traveled on Epstein’s private jet numerous times and partied on a Caribbean island owned by Epstein, who served 13 months for soliciting a minor for prostitution.

“While it’s been reported that the two men were friends, Bill’s name is all over the legal papers, which are chock-full of sordid claims about Epstein,” a source told The ENQUIRER.

“This could end up being the final nail in the coffin of Hillary’s bid to be president!”

The documents filed in Florida’s Palm Beach Circuit Court, are part of a legal dispute between Epstein and lawyers Scott Rothstein and Bradley Edwards.

Okay, is this real or is it Memorex? Beats me, but I wouldn’t bet against it, if past performance (excuse the double entendre) is any indication. Bill was said to have been photographed as recently as February at a L.A. fundraiser next to a couple of prostitutes from one of the Nevada ranches. If it can be shown he was hanging around one of Epstein’s orgies or even near them — Epstein’s being sued on sexual slavery charges — it’s certainly bad news and most likely curtains for Hillary. It’s also good news for Elizabeth Warren and even Jerry Brown, whose ears must be burning at this moment. (Yes, the governor of my home state — just sworn in for a record-breaking fourth term — has never given up his presidential aspirations. This may be his chance.)

But is all this hanky-panky fair game? Shouldn’t private lives be separated from politics in the French manner (okay, the French aren’t really separating it anymore either)?

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Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi made an extraordinary speech on New Year’s Day to Cairo’s Al-Azhar and the Awqaf Ministry calling for a long overdue virtual ecclesiastical revolution in Islam.  This is something no Western leader has the had the courage to do, certainly not Barack Obama, despite his Muslim education.

Accusing the umma (world Islamic population) of encouraging the hostility of the entire world, al-Sisi’s speech is so dramatic and essentially revolutionary it brings to mind Khrushchev’s famous speech exposing Stalin. Many have called for a reformation of Islam, but for the leader of the largest Arab nation to do so has world-changing implications.

Here are the key parts as translated on Raymond Ibrahim’s blog:

I am referring here to the religious clerics.   We have to think hard about what we are facing—and I have, in fact, addressed this topic a couple of times before.  It’s inconceivable that the thinking that we hold most sacred should cause the entire umma [Islamic world] to be a source of anxiety, danger, killing and destruction for the rest of the world.  Impossible!

That thinking—I am not saying “religion” but “thinking”—that corpus of texts and ideas that we have sacralized over the years, to the point that departing from them has become almost impossible, is antagonizing the entire world.  It’s antagonizing the entire world!

Is it possible that 1.6 billion people [Muslims] should want to kill the rest of the world’s inhabitants—that is 7 billion—so that they themselves may live? Impossible!

I am saying these words here at Al Azhar, before this assembly of scholars and ulema—Allah Almighty be witness to your truth on Judgment Day concerning that which I’m talking about now.

All this that I am telling you, you cannot feel it if you remain trapped within this mindset. You need to step outside of yourselves to be able to observe it and reflect on it from a more enlightened perspective.

I say and repeat again that we are in need of a religious revolution. You, imams, are responsible before Allah. The entire world, I say it again, the entire world is waiting for your next move… because this umma is being torn, it is being destroyed, it is being lost—and it is being lost by our own hands. [bolds mine]

Al-Sisi is certainly correct.  The whole world has been waiting for a long time for the next move of these imams or for somebody, anybody that will modernize Islam as other religions have done..  Whether that will happen, of course, is another question, but what al-Sisi is saying here is in many ways more revolutionary than the “Arab Spring.”  People ask, where are the “moderate Muslims”?  Well, one of them may be the president of Egypt. The boys from Hamas, Hezbollah, ISIS, Boko Haram, al Qaeda, etc., etc., are probably not too happy about what al-Sisi said.  Let’s hope he doesn’t suffer the fate of Anwar Sadat for his courage.

Also at PJ Media: 

A Modest Proposal to Combat Islamic Violence

Everyone with half a brain (and not silenced by diplo speak) knows the Palestinians don’t really want a two-state solution — the vast majority of them anyway.  If they had wanted a state of their own beside Israel, they could have had one decades ago. Sure, it wouldn’t have been a hundred percent of what they sought, but it would have been ninety or even ninety-five percent.  That’s not bad. After all, it would have been the Israelis giving up the territory, as they did in Gaza. But it was never enough for the Pals.

Most of us who have been involved in negotiations — and that’s almost everybody — know that if you really want something, ultimately you compromise.  When you don’t really want something (a deal, a state), lack of perfection becomes an excuse to walk away.  That’s what happens with the Palestinians every time.  They want a one-state solution — it’s inescapable (except perhaps to Peter Beinart and the gang at J-Street).

At least Hamas is honest about that.  The Palestinian Authority plays it cozy, preferring to act, from time to time anyway, as if they do want some sort of settlement to keep the graft rolling in.  Any idea of the net worths of Mahmoud Abbas, Saeb Erekat or Hanan Ashwari at this point?  It’s  probably not quite up with Fidel’s cool billion on an individual basis, but added together I wouldn’t be surprised.  At the same time the Palestinian people are expressing their  love of peace on social media with their latest video hit “How to Stab a Jew.”  This is at the very moment the Palestinians went to the Security Council, trying to force a peace solution with Israel with a one-year deadline and no measures for Israel’s security.  Who could possibly have voted for that?

Well, the French for one.  You know — the country that made ISIS look like amateurs when it came to beheadings and was right up there with Hitler when it came to anti-Semitism, deporting some 67,000 Jews from Drancy to the extermination camps, 4000 of them arrested in one night from just one district of Paris.

But the morally superior French know what the Israelis should do, assuring us all they will be back in the Security Council to enforce a solution again.

French Ambassador Francois Delattre said Paris would continue its efforts to get a resolution through the council that would help move peace efforts forward. “France regrets that it isn’t possible to reach a consensus today,” he said. “But our efforts must not stop here. It is our responsibility to try again.”

Well, the French can play all the games they want, as can John Kerry and everybody else, but we all know it’s not going anywhere, never has. The Palestinian action at the UN was just a ploy.  They never expected it to pass, since the U.S. had already informed them they would veto.  So it was just a charade  for political purposes, aided by the peace-loving French.  For the record, the Brits abstained but the Aussies voted with the U.S.  That’s the way things go these days.

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Looking for Mr. Good President

December 30th, 2014 - 12:06 am

The last on my block, I have just finished reading Lynne Cheney’s splendid biography of our fourth president, James Madison: A Life Reconsidered.  I blush to admit that my knowledge of Madison was not extensive.  Of course I knew he was one of the authors of The Federalist and was considered the father of the Constitution. And, yes, I did know a bit more than that.  I wasn’t completely ignorant. But, like many of my generation, growing up I had paid more attention to the likes of Marx and Marcuse.  They were the cool guys.  The Founding Fathers were people you had to study to pass a test, fogeys in wigs who took snuff and had elaborate handwritings.

Okay, I was dumb.  But at least I’m trying to play catch up.  One of the more surprising things I learned from Cheney’s book was how often and how extensively Madison and his good buddy Jefferson changed their minds.  These guys were flip floppers.  Well, not quite flip floppers of the John Kerry ilk (thankfully!), but they were able to reverse field when they had to or thought they had to. They were flexible men. In that sense they were the antitheses of our current president, who never seems to alter his views no matter what ever, holding on to them like a bulldog with the last chew toy on the planet.

In fact, Madison and Jefferson changed their views on really significant matters, usually in tandem, but sometimes not.  Madison, in writing The Federalist, argued extensively and brilliantly for a strong federal government, strong in 1780s terms  anyway, in order to stop the fragile country from flying apart and induce the states to support the Constitution.  Not long thereafter, during Adams’ administration, he went the other way, becoming something of an ur-libertarian, backing states’ rights and smaller government.  He had a good reason, the Alien and Sedition Acts that threatened the very Bill of Rights that Madison himself had authored (after he had opposed it).  Yes, he was for the Bill of Rights after he was against it.

Obviously, the man had no values.  Wrong.  He had plenty.  In Cheney’s telling, you see why he made the choices he did and in almost every case you agree — at least I did.  What you see most, in Madison and Jefferson, is  that in the end character is king.  It’s who you are that determines things or, as Reagan famously said, “People are policy.”

That is why I am not one of those who gets overly head up over whether someone is a Tea Partier or a RINO. In fact, I’m not much for the terminology, which largely puts me to sleep. I prefer to take a step backwards and look at the person.  I want someone who is psychologically and intellectually prepared for the unexpected, because none of us knows what the future will bring.  Who knew George W. Bush would walk into 9/11 and become a wartime president?

On the election of 2016 I am an agnostic (except that I will be voting GOP) and intend to stay that way for a long time. There’s a lot to talk about and think about. I want to hear as much as I can — and to ask questions.  Madison and Jefferson were concerned with big ideas. They weren’t into faux “hope and change.”  They were into real change.  We don’t see much of that from our present crop so far, though they haven’t had much opportunity to show us.  Maybe someone will surprise, and inspire, us.

Iran Testing ‘Suicide Drone’

December 27th, 2014 - 1:45 pm

Adding spice to the seemingly hapless nuclear negotiations with Iran, the Islamic Republic has announced it’s been testing “suicide drones.” From the AP:

Iran’s army said Saturday it has deployed a suicide drone for the first time in massive ongoing military drills near the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the entrance to the Persian Gulf.

Gen. Ahmad Reza Pourdastan, the army’s chief commander of ground forces, described the unmanned aircraft as a “mobile bomb,” according to state media, which said the aerial device is designed to strike air, ground and naval targets.

The Iranians are known to inflate their technical capabilities, but imagine one of these “mobile bombs” with a nuclear warhead. Do we really know what they have now or are planning?  The Obama administration has assured us they are on the case and aware of where the Iranians are headed, but not long ago our president informed us ISIS was no more than a warmed-over jayvee team.

Iran claims to already have a drone — the Shahed-129 — that can carry eight missiles with a range of about one thousand miles.  Braggadocio or truth?  Or does it matter?  The atomic bomb is 1944 technology.  Just how far behind can the Iranians possibly be?

Further from the AP:

He [Gen. Pourdestan] did not provide the name of the drone. The conservative Kayhan daily referred to it as the Yasir, while an online news website called it the Raad. Officials could not be reached for comment.

Call it what you want, armed with a nuke, it’s mass murder. And come to think of it, wouldn’t any drone be a potential suicide bomber? All you have to do is point down.

Racism Right and Left: One Man’s Opinion

December 21st, 2014 - 9:41 pm

Which side of the aisle is more racist than the other? It’s not even close.

Because I am in New York for a short visit and, as the world well knows, the city of my birth is in a period of racial turmoil, I am going to say something I have been thinking about for a long time.  And because I am one of the relative few to have spent long periods of his life on both the left and the right and because I was a civil rights worker in the sixties. I think — though it is purely personal and based only on  observation — I have earned the right to an opinion.  So here goes.

The left is vastly more racist than the right.  It’s not even close.  Since I was publicly identified with the right, roughly from when I started blogging in 2003 (although it was actually several years earlier in private), I have personally witnessed not a single incident of racism from anyone who could be considered a right winger and heard only one racial slur — and that was from a Frenchman.   In the seven years I was CEO of PJ Media, I came to know or meet literally dozens of people who identified with the Tea Party.  I did not hear one word of  anything close to racism from any of them even once.  Not one, ever.  This despite their being accused of racism constantly.

The left, on the other hand, is filled with racism of all sorts, much, but not all, of it projected.  I used to hear racist comments all the time during the seventies and eighties when almost all my friends were leftist or liberals.  During that time black racism was pretty much continuously on the rise, aided and abetted by whites.

It had been going on for a while.  I first encountered  black racism from the person of none other than Julian Bond (later the president of the NAACP), who treated me, a civil rights worker involved in voter registration, in a racist, anti-white manner in the SNCC offices in Atlanta in 1966.  Stokely Carmichael treated me that way also. That was at the beginning of the Black Power movement and I excused  it then as “a phase” that had to be gone through.  I was mistaken and naive.  It was racism pure and simple.  I, and others, never confronted or named it then.

Now we live in culture where there is considerably more black racism  than white racism.  Someone like Al Sharpton, clearly the equivalent of David Duke, is far more powerful than Duke ever was.  No one pays attention to the execrable Duke, as they shouldn’t.  But they shouldn’t pay attention to Sharpton either.

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The Real Fallout from Sony Is Nuclear

December 19th, 2014 - 9:09 pm

D.W. Sharpton, in his director’s chair.

It’s official.  The Jews no longer run Hollywood.  The anti-Semites do in the person of  the Reverend Al Sharpton — he of the Tawana Brawley case and the Williamsburg riots — who is now controlling things at Sony Pictures, production head Amy Pascal having sought his absolution for her tasteless but trivial jokes about Obama. Someone ought to tell the Sony overlords in Tokyo that the Rev Al may currently be the most hated man in America, not exactly good for business.

In fact, he’s a veritable racist manufacturing machine, turning the nicest white people, who previously were very friendly, even loving, toward blacks as their fellow Americans, into racists every time they see him fulminating on television.  That’s the reality of Sharpton.  I was a civil rights worker in the South and every time I see the Rev Al he makes me want to puke.  I can only imagine how those without my history react. That he has been allowed to be such a frequent visitor to the White House is testament to the president’s own moral vacuousness and unconscious/conscious desire to exploit race whenever he has the opportunity.  Shame on him. And forget Sony’s Pascal.  She lives in such a bubble she probably thinks Sharpton’s a black Gandhi rather than a black David Duke, which he unquestionably is, except Al has more power now these day than Duke ever did.  Whoever gave her the advice to seek counsel from Al has his or her own problems as well.

The whole Sony story has a certain twisted dark comedy flavor with CEO Michael Lynton bickering with Obama over the release of what is said to be an unwatchable movie. It sure looks that way from the trailers.  If the NORKS had any brains, they should just have let the film be released and it would have sunk like a stone.  But perhaps they had other intentions — or someone did — beyond making fun of inane Hollywood studio executives or even silencing a movie.

The cyber attack on the studio has a serious side and it’s not really about North Korea.  It’s about who helped North Korea, the assumption being that the NORKS don’t quite have the technical expertise to pull this off by themselves.  Russia, China and Iran are the three candidates whose names have been thrown into the hopper as possible co-perps — maybe more than one of them.

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