Sift through the facts presented in this New York Times story about Thomas Eric Duncan, the Liberian man who has a confirmed case of Ebola in Dallas.
He came into direct contact with a friend who had Ebola. He rode with her in a taxi and carried her from the taxi to a hospital on September 15, four days before he flew to the United States. She was turned away from the hospital because the Ebola ward was full.
She died of Ebola early the following morning. Her brother also got sick and shows Ebola symptoms. That was at the same time that Duncan started getting sick. He left Liberia and arrived in Texas on September 20. Six days later he sought treatment at Texas Presbyterian Hospital, and was sent home. He returned two days later, and has been confirmed to be infected with Ebola.
Duncan also abruptly quit his job on September 4, so he might have already planned the trip to see his family in the U.S.
But he certainly knew that he had been exposed to Ebola by the time he boarded that plane and came to Texas, four days after his friend died of it. He must surely have known it when he first visited the Texas Presbyterian Hospital, and he must have known it when the doctors sent him home.
And yet he went home, and exposed others, including children. Did he come to the U.S., knowing that he could get treatment here — but also aware that he was transporting the disease without alerting any authorities?
Update: This appears to be his Facebook page. This Thomas Eric Duncan is from Liberia, as is the Dallas Ebola patient, and he has a sister named Mai Wureh. The Facebook page links to a “friend” with the same unusual name.
This would be Thomas Eric Duncan, then.
What the H-E-Double Hockeysticks does Barack Obama do all day?
He obviously wasn’t on the ball as ISIS was rising to power. He says he learns about everything from the news, not his staff.
That’s how he learned that he’d been in potential danger because a security guard with a gun — and convictions — was with him in an elevator, unscreened by the Secret Service.
WOW @pressSec on elevator: "The WH first learned of that incident yesterday afternoon shortly before it was reported by a news organization"
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) October 1, 2014
We know that the president watches a lot of sports. Someone needs to take his remote away for a while.
The Centers for Disease Control edited its Ebola prevention fact page on September 19. A note at the bottom of the page says as much.
So what was changed?
Here is the top of the page as it reads now, after the edit.
As you can see, the CDC edited out the following text on Sept 19:
Because we still do not know exactly how people are infected with Ebola, few primary prevention measures have been established and no vaccine exists.
When cases of the disease do appear, risk of transmission is increased within healthcare settings. Therefore, healthcare workers must be able to recognize a case of Ebola and be ready to use practical viral hemorrhagic fever isolation precautions or barrier nursing techniques. They should also have the capability to request diagnostic tests or prepare samples for shipping and testing elsewhere.
Why did the CDC edit all of that information out? Did the science change, or did the government make the edit for some other reason(s)?
The Ebola story is almost moving too fast to keep up with. The latest is that a second person is now being monitored for symptoms of Ebola infection, according to USA Today.
DALLAS — Health officials are closely monitoring a possible second Ebola patient who had close contact with the first person to be diagnosed in the U.S., the director of Dallas County’s health department said Wednesday.
All who have been in close contact with the man officially diagnosed are being monitored as a precaution, Zachary Thompson, director of Dallas County Health and Human Services, said in a morning interview with WFAA-TV, Dallas-Fort Worth.
Additionally, at least five schoolchildren who attend public schools in the Dallas Independent School District were likely exposed to the first patient.
Dallas ISD superintendent Mike Miles also revealed that five children from four of the district’s schools were possibly exposed to the virus.
Miles identified the schools as:
- Conrad High School
- Tasby Middle School
- Hotchkiss Elementary School
- Dan D. Rogers Elementary
The superintendent says the students didn’t exhibit any symptoms.
“So, the odds of them passing on any sort of virus is very low,” Miles said.
The schools have had their health staff beefed up, and the district is urging those kids to stay home.
The ambulance that the original patient, who has been identified as Thomas Eric Duncan, rode to the hospital in was used for a couple of days after his ride to enter the hospital. He was later confirmed with Ebola. That ambulance has been isolated from others and is not being used now. The EMS crew who drove Duncan to the hospital have tested negative for Ebola. They are currently restricted to their homes and are under observation.
Update: Politico reports that 18 people are being monitored for Ebola now.
America is abuzz with Major League Baseball playoff fever today. Beltway reporters had a chummy little chat about the national pastime with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) today.
The Democrats including Pelosi cast themselves as fighters for the little guy — just folks. And Pelosi’s a big baseball fan. Evidence? Her father brought the Orioles to Baltimore, dontcha know, and her neighbor owns the Washington Nationals.
But really, Nancy is just one of the little folks.
Well, this is unsettling.
Centers for Disease Control Director Dr. Tom Frieden appeared on CNN today alongside Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Frieden intended to reassure CNN and the American people by explaining how difficult it is to contract Ebola. The first case of that deadly virus has been confirmed in a patient in Dallas.
Gupta and Frieden get into a little debate over what “contact” means. Take a look.
Frieden says that though he is standing just three feet from Gupta, for Ebola purposes they are not in “direct contact” because they have not touched. But anchor Michaela Pereira notes that a sneeze would change everything. And Frieden agrees and says “We would take a close look at that.”
US Marine Sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi has spent the last six months in a Mexican prison. He is there because he made a wrong turn while transporting legally owned firearms in his car, and Mexico has chosen to throw the full weight of its legal system at him.
This is the same country that regularly berates the United States if we happen to enforce our own border laws.
The Obama administration has chosen to leave him there to languish in horrible conditions, even though he may have post-traumatic stress disorder from his service in combat. Tahmooressi has been beaten and threatened while he has languished in Mexican prison.
In hearings in Washington today, Navy veteran and talk show host Montel Williams tearfully laid into the Obama administration for failing to secure Tahmooressi’s release. “Make the call today,” Williams angrily begged the president.
Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX) noted that President Obama, an avid sports fan, always makes sure to call sports teams when they win championships. But he has failed to call Mexico’s president to get Tahmooressi released.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) suggested that Tahmooressi’s mother, Jill, invite President Obama to play golf. Then, perhaps, the president would pay attention to the plight of her son.
That might get the president’s attention.
But we need to be sure that we have his ear. So here’s a suggestion.
Obama is a sports fan, as everyone knows, and he makes gay rights a top priority.
President Obama hasn’t made the call to Mexico’s president but he called NBA player Jason Collins and congratulated him when he announced that he is gay.
Obama also congratulated football player Michael Sam when he became the first openly gay player to be drafted for the NFL. Sam is currently on the Dallas Cowboys practice squad.
Isn’t the solution here obvious?
To get President Obama’s attention and get him to make the call that Montel Williams begged him to make, Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi just has to announce that he is gay.
If he does that, President Obama and Eric Holder will be on Air Force One within the hour bound for Mexico City, and Sgt. Tahmooressi will be out of Mexican prison by the weekend.
As the Islamic State rose to become the terrorist mass that it is today, President Barack Obama ignored warnings and reportedly skipped about half of his presidential daily briefings. He downplayed the threat, calling ISIS “jayvee.”
Those briefings that the president reportedly skipped included “specific” intelligence about ISIS and its capabilities even before the 2012 election.
At that time, Obama was publicly campaigning on having “decimated” “core al Qaeda” and sent it “on the run.”
So was Obama reading his briefings or not? It’s an important question that aims directly at how the president is performing his duties. Obama tossed the intelligence community and his own Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, under the bus on 60 Minutes when he blamed them for “underestimating” ISIS. That comment has sparked a sort of cold war between the president and his intelligence agencies, as the nation grapples with the Islamic State’s rise and threat, and what to do about it.
But if you are concerned about this, former Democratic Party chairman Howard Dean thinks that you’re a kook.
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough asked Dean about the skipped briefings on his show this morning. “Howard Dean, you get 42% of the briefings face-to-face, 42% in the second term, missed the rest. Is that a big deal? Are there sometimes you’d rather read something than have people talk?”
Dean wasn’t subtle in dismissing the question: “This rises to the level of Obama was born in Kenya and is a right wing Muslim. I saw Crossroads did this, he has no credibility whatsoever. The presidents, leaders, governors do things differently, I just think this is ridiculous. I can’t even believe we are talking about this. This is silly.”
DeLay was indicted by the Travis County District Attorney on criminal money laundering charges in 2005, and a Travis County jury convicted him in 2010. At the time, Rep. DeLay was the Republicans’ most effective campaign strategist and fundraiser in Congress. He resigned his seat in Congress in 2006 to allow a special election to replace him. Democrats would take control of the US House from the Republicans in 2006.
DeLay appealed, and his conviction was overturned in 2013 by a three-judge panel of the Texas 3rd District Court of Criminal Appeals.
The Travis County DA’s office appealed that decision. Today’s ruling upholds the 2013 ruling, and Tom DeLay remains a free man. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals is the highest appellate court in Texas.
The lone dissenting vote in today’s ruling was cast Judge Larry Meyers. Meyers switched from the GOP to the Democratic Party in 2013 and is currently the Democratic nominee for Texas Supreme Court. Meyers ran into a little legal trouble of his own in 2012 for failing to pay a 2008 speeding ticket.
The same office that indicted and tried DeLay, the Travis County District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit, also indicted Gov. Rick Perry (R) this year. It is currently headed by District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, Democrat, who was caught and admitted to drunk driving in 2013. Lehmberg remains in office.
…it has a lot of screwy results within.
The eighth annual Texas Lyceum poll is out, and at first blush it appears to hold some good news for Democrat governor challenger Wendy Davis. According to the poll, Republican Greg Abbott leads Davis by just nine points, 49 to 40.
The same poll finds that the race for lieutenant governor is much wider, with Republican state Sen. Dan Patrick leading Democrat state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte by a whopping 14 points, 47% to 33%.
Elsewhere on the ballot, Sen. John Cornyn leads his Democratic challenger by 18 points. But Republicans only lead Democrats on the generic congressional ballot by 11 points, 46 to 35 percent.
In the guts of the poll, though, things get a little bit weird.
In the governor’s race, Abbot (R) leads Davis (D) among both genders. He leads among women by 2 points, and by men by 17 points. Yet his total lead is only 9 points?
Nationally, President Barack Obama’s approval rating is in the low 40s or high 30s. The RealClearPolitics average has him right around 41.6%.
Obama has never been popular in Texas. He lost here to John McCain in 2008, 55-43%, and to Mitt Romney in 2012, 57-41%. The president’s popularity is not increasing now, either in Texas or nationally.
Yet the Lyceum poll has Obama at 48% overall approval — in Texas. That’s on page four of the Lyceum poll results. It suggests that Democrats are being oversampled. Obama has never reached that level of popularity when Texans actually vote. He even lost the Democratic primary here to Hillary Clinton in 2008. He took away more delegates than Clinton because the Texas Democrats employ their screwy two-step primary-caucus system, and Obama’s organization overcame Clinton’s in the caucus portion of the show.
It wouldn’t be the first time that the Lyceum poll has published results that skewed a little bit left of reality.
In 2011, a Lyceum poll held that President Obama’s approval rating, in Texas, was at 51%. Go ahead and laugh.
But we’ve already mentioned how the votes went for Obama in both 2008 and 2012. Add to that, a month before that 2011 Lyceum poll, a Texas Tribune poll put the president’s approval rating in Texas at just 35%.
Could Obama really have lost by 12 points in 2008, hit 35% in 2011 according to one poll, suddenly jumped to 51% in 2011 in another poll, and then lose Texas by 16 points in 2012? Sure, it’s possible, but how likely is it?
There have been two governor debates in Texas. Davis trails in a red state and had to use those moments to elevate herself as a candidate and do significant damage to Abbott. She failed to do that in both debates, offering instead attacks that have fallen flat and outbursts that have been preserved on YouTube. Watch them on the next page.
Davis has admitted that she would impose Obamacare, which has never been popular in Texas, by fiat if she was governor. Davis has admitted that she supports the entire Obama agenda, which is not popular in Texas. During Tuesday night’s debate, Davis had the opportunity to tell Texans how much her education plan would cost, and she refused to answer that simple question all three times she was asked, as Mike Hashimoto noted at the Dallas Morning News.
The above facts suggest that Davis has done nothing to build up any momentum or put this race within striking distance.
VIDEOS – White House Spokesman Questions Kansas City Royals Manager’s Leadership, but Not the Head of the Secret Service
Tuesday night, the Kansas City Royals almost blew their post-season when manager Ned Yost pulled his starting pitcher and replaced him with Yordano Ventura, a starter who had just pitched on Sunday.
Ventura coughed up a three-run shot, the Royals fell behind to the A’s in the one-game playoff and had to claw their way back to a win.
Ok, fine. It was a terrible call.
But the United States Secret Service has made a series of worse blunders lately. They let a guy jump the White House fence and run deep into the presidential family’s residence. They missed a shooting, in which bullets struck the White House, for days. The Secret Service allowed a man with convictions on his record to get near the president, with a firearm.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest is far more interested in questioning Ned Yost’s leadership than that of Secret Service Director Pierson. Take a look at this pair of clips from MSNBC today.
In the first, Earnest says Pierson is “more than qualified” to continue leading the Secret Service. Even Mika Brzezinski has a hard time buying it.
In this clip, Thomas Roberts notes that Earnest is happy to question Ned Yost’s leadership of the Royals, but will not question Julia Pierson’s leadership of the Secret Service. Brzezinski delivers a little coup de grace at the end.
This whole thing…last night on my colleague Rick Moran’s radio show, my other colleague, Bridget Johnson, described how early in the Syrian civil war, she spoke with a general who defected and wanted to get the defectors’ story into Washington publications so that the Obama administration would see it and act. I joked that the general’s heart was in the right place, but his strategy was wrong. He should have gotten his story placed on the sports page, because that’s one of the few things that the Obama administration really pays attention to.
Too bad that’s not a joke.
So says this story from Montana. Because that state has one.
There are four places in the United States set up to handle a patient sickened by the Ebola virus, and Missoula is one of those.
It has been since 2007, in fact.
St. Patrick Hospital administrators have no notice about when or if they will be asked to care for someone stricken with the disease that’s killed more than 3,000 people in Africa in 2014. But the hospital has a special wing of its intensive care unit with three rooms modified to safely handle infectious diseases like Ebola.
The other U.S. sites cleared for Ebola treatment are in Bethesda, Maryland; Atlanta; and Omaha, Nebraska. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control have deployed teams of health workers to numerous sites in West Africa to slow the epidemic’s progress. U.S. military personnel have also been sent there to build hospital clinics, although Risi said those people would not be performing any care or have contact with Ebola patients.
So, not the hospital in Dallas that actually has an Ebola patient.
Can things get worse for the Secret Service after that guy leaped the White House fence and got deep inside the building? Probably. In fact, they just did, according to the Washington Post.
And it has an Ebola connection.
A security contractor with a gun and three prior convictions for assault and battery was allowed on an elevator with President Obama during a Sept. 16 trip to Atlanta, violating Secret Service protocols, according to three people familiar with the incident.
The incident occurred as Obama appeared at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to discuss the U.S. response to the Ebola crisis.
The contractor did not comply when Secret Service agents asked him to stop using a phone camera to videotape the president in the elevator, according to the people familiar with the incident.
Agents questioned him, and used a database check to learn of his criminal history.
When a supervisor from the private security firm approached and learned of the agents’ concern, the contractor was fired on the spot and agreed to turn over his gun — surprising agents, who had not realized he was armed during his encounter with Obama.
Good to know that they have top men on the job…
Has the US State Department learned anything from the rise of ISIS? Such as, should the Obama administration have pushed harder to leave a residual US military presence in Iraq after the war? Should the US have pushed Maliki harder for a status of forces agreement? Would that have helped stop ISIS before it became the threat that it is?
The AP’s Matt Lee tried pressing spokeswoman Jen Psaki for an answer on that in today’s press briefing. He didn’t get anywhere, at least, anywhere that’s not covered in Psaki’s approved talking points.
So Psaki does what she normally does — stick to the talking points, and treat reporters as if they’re children.
No details are available yet. Check back on this breaking story.
— CNBC (@CNBC) September 30, 2014
Update: NBC’s Dallas affiliate reports that the case is there.
— Shannon Wolfson (@ShannonWolfson) September 30, 2014
Update: More details.
DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A North Texas hospital has a patient in isolation as they evaluate them for potential exposure to the Ebola virus.
Officials with Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas released the following statement Monday night:
“Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas has admitted a patient into strict isolation to be evaluated for potential Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) based on the patient’s symptoms and recent travel history. The hospital is following all Centers for Disease Control and Texas Department of Heath recommendations to ensure the safety of patients, hospital staff, volunteers, physicians and visitors. The CDC anticipates preliminary results tomorrow.”
The patient’s travel history and specific symptoms remain unclear, but it is said to involve a high fever and vomiting. The name of the patient has not been released.
CBS 11 News spoke with Dallas County Health and Human Services director Zachary Thompson, who confirmed that the patient had been in the West Africa area where the Ebola virus exists.
Update: I’ve just watched the CDC’s press conference on the Ebola patient. He is not a US citizen, though the CDC refused to confirm that outright. He entered the US from Liberia, and was staying with family in the Dallas area. He entered on September 20. On September 24 he entered the hospital with unspecified illness (which we now know is Ebola), but he was sent home. He re-entered the hospital on September 28. He showed no signs or symptoms when he left Liberia.
Ebola tends to take about 21 days to manifest, so the CDC is trying to track down every person this man came into contact with since his symptoms first appeared around September 24-25, as that is when Ebola becomes contagious.
If you’d never heard of the “Khorasan Group” prior to September 23, 2014 — when the US-led airstrikes on Syria began — you’re not alone. The obscure name had not come up very much at all in terrorism reports or studies, in press reports or much of anywhere else. Most of us who have written about terrorism since shortly after 9-11 had never heard of the group.
Until, that is, President Obama named the Khorasan Group in the letter he sent to Congress justifying bombing Syria. In the same letter, Obama omitted any mention of the Islamic State, ISIS, or ISIL at all.
That curious omission generated some head-scratching. Were we baited and switched into bombing Syria? And just who is this “Khorasan Group” that seems to have materialized out of the Middle East’s desert sands?
Glenn Greenwald has gone through media reports in the days leading up to the bombing of Syria, which began on September 23. The ISIS beheading of American journalist James Foley on September 9 grabbed the world’s attention and forced Obama to step off the golf course and take some action.
There were scant mentions of the Khorasan group at all until an AP story appeared on September 13. That story, in which several US intelligence officials are quoted anonymously, painted the group as more dangerous than ISIS, and planning an “imminent” attack on US soil.
That word — “imminent” — turns out to play a key role, if Greenwald is right. If a terrorist group is planning an imminent attack and has the capability of carrying it out, then their target — in this case, the US or Europe — has not only the right but the duty to stop the terrorists.
The 9-13 AP story paved the way for a CBS News story and then numerous others leading up to September 23. But all along that period, Americans were focused on the Islamic State. It was the “jayvee” team who had butchered Americans and would butcher a British and a Frenchman, while swallowing up parts of Iraq and Syria, stranding the Yazidis on a mountaintop, engaging in mass killings and crucifixions of Christians, selling women into sex slavery, and becoming the world’s richest terrorist group by selling Iraqi oil on the black market to Turket at cut prices. In fact, ISIS’ oil piracy gave OPEC nations a reason to fight them beyond terrorism.
American citizens’ attentions were focused on ISIS from September 9 all the way through September 23. President Obama was compelled by polls to act after two Americans were beheaded and videos of their executions by ISIS broadcast on the Internet. But Obama did not want to take the issue up to Congress or to the UN. There also existed the complication of bombing on Syrian soil without Assad’s input or permission. Assad remains the head of government in a sovereign, albeit piecemeal, Syria, despite Obama’s calls for him to leave power.
According to Greenwald’s theory, the Obama administration made up the Khorasan threat and dubbed it “imminent” in order to conduct the bombing of Syria as a necessary move in American self-defense. As soon as the bombings had started, however, the Khorasan threat has receded in the Obama administration’s communications, and the ISIS threat has returned to be called the top threat. The “imminence” of the Khorasan threat has been downplayed and downgraded, and some in the media are starting to question the emphasis on that group in the run-up to bombing Syria.
All tolled, the people of the United States and the world may have been bamboozled through anonymous sourcing in willing media outlets into bombing a terrorist group that doesn’t actually exist.
CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield Rips Obama for Getting Numerous Warnings About ISIS Yet Calling them ‘Jayvee’
CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield hammered President Obama today over the rise of the Islamic State. Obama blamed his own intelligence officials, including Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, for “underestimating” what ISIS could do.
Banfield was having none of that. She pointed out that the US-led airstrikes are not having much of an effect.
“Want to talk about this with James Reese and Bobby Gauche. Lieutenant Colonel, first to you, air strike after air strike and yet town after town after military base continues to fall to ISIS. This cannot just be because ground troops aren’t calling in the air strikes?”
The guests agreed, and noted that the Iraqi military continues to fail in the face of ISIS assaults. They also noted that the Maliki government neglected Sunni units and favored Shiite units.
Banfield refused to let Obama off the hook: “It’s complicated, I get it. But, Colonel, ultimately, it can’t be that complicated when back in July of 2013, October of 2013 and February of 2014, we had people like the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency warning that these guys are a problem. This didn’t just come out of nowhere. They weren’t just a j.v. team back then. Why is it that we’re now sort of seeing President Obama saying, ‘We underestimated things?’”
ESPN’s Colin Cowherd went off on a rant today about Americans who do and do not, in his view, deserve his “sympathies.”
Those who do not include those who choose to smoke, eat fast food or drink “13 cokes” every day. “That’s on you,” Cowherd said, delivering a sentiment that many Americans would probably agree with.
Cowherd says that he does “sympathize” with Americans who enlist in the military, because of the reasons he believes they join.
“My sympathy goes to the military members in this country,” Cowherd said toward the end of Tuesday’s show. “Socio-economically, no choices, paid almost nothing, lose a limb, lose a life. That, I feel sympathy for.”
Military members past and present probably aren’t looking to Colin Cowherd in a feeling of gratitude for that. Americans who enlist or enter the officer corps do so for many reasons — family history of service, a desire to give back to their country, a desire to gain experience and education, and of course the need to do something positive to escape tough circumstances all factor in.
Cowherd wasn’t finished. He also said that police and firemen don’t join out of a sense of duty.
“What fireman becomes a fireman knowing that at some point he will at some point run into a house that’s burning?” Cowherd asked rhetorically. “It’s dangerous!”
The obvious answer is “All of them. Including the thousands of volunteer fireman around the country.”
Cowherd returned to explaining his understanding of why Americans join the military.
“We know most people that go into the military in this country — they need the military often to pay bills. That is is almost a federal safety net financially, and by the way you’ll take shots. You’ll be sent two or three times to a raging inferno in the Middle East. That stuff scares me. That stuff I’m worried about. There’s loss of life there.”
You can watch Cowherd make his remarks on the next page.
Our new partners in the battle against terrorism are the same old Islamic supremacist theocrats. The Guardian reports that Iran has executed Mohsen Amir-Aslani, 37, for holding heretical views.
His crime? He held that the story of Jonah is allegorical.
The story of Jonah, the Jewish missionary sent by God to sinful Nineveh, is told in the Bible and mentioned in the Koran. Nineveh is in present-day Iraq, and is now held by the Islamic State. ISIS destroyed Jonah’s tomb in July and are become entrenched in Nineveh’s governance and daily life.
Mr. Amir-Aslani was arrested for questioning the Jonah story nine years ago. Iran’s judiciary sentenced him to death for heresy, and he was hanged last week.
The Iranian judiciary is now claiming that Aslani was really killed for having illicit sex with some of the clients of his psychotherapy practice. But human rights groups say that the government has produced little evidence of any such relationships.
Totalitarian governments often smear their victims after murdering them.
Charges have been filed against Oklahoma beheading suspect Alton Nolen, 30.
The former prison inmate, who converted to Islam and now goes by the name Jah’Keem Yisrael, is charged with first degree murder and assault.
Nolen admitted to beheading Colleen Hufford, 54.
According to the charges filed today against him, Nolen was suspended from Vaughan Foods on Thursday after an altercation with another employee, Traci Johnson, who says the dispute was about Nolen “not liking white people.”
According to the prosecutor, Nolen left, went home, retrieved a large knife and returned to his former workplace. Upon entering, he attacked Hufford from behind and began to saw her head off. Once he had severed her head, he attacked Johnson and stabbed her repeatedly. Nolen reportedly used several Arabic terms during the attack.
The company’s COO, Mark Vaughan, subdued Nolen by shooting him with a rifle. Vaughan is a reserve sheriff’s deputy in Oklahoma City.
Nolen is likely to face the death penalty according to the prosecutor, who says the attack was motivated more by racism as by religion.
“It had more to do with race rather than trying to convert people,” Mashburn said. He said there was a “back and forth with Ms. Johnson and that led her to make a complaint to the HR department.”
“There was some sort of infatuation with beheadings. It seemed to be related to his interest in killing someone that way,” the prosecutor said. “Other than that, it seemed to be related to his being suspended earlier in the day.”
The “infatuation with beheadings” can’t have anything to do with ISIS’ recent beheadings. Can’t be that.
The state of fundamental freedoms of religion and association, in two acts.
Act One: A gun range owner has announced that her business is now a “Muslim free zone.”
Jan Morgan owns the Gun Cave Indoor Shooting Range in Arkansas. She has posted a notice that Muslims may no longer use the range. She is attempting to exercise the freedom of association, along with her duties as a federally licensed firearm dealer.
The primary reasons I do not want muslims shooting at my range are listed:
1) The Koran (which I have read and studied thoroughly) and (which all muslims align themselves with), contains 109 verses commanding hate, murder and terror against all human beings who refuse to submit or convert to Islam. Read those verses of violence here.
2) My life has been threatened repeatedly by muslims in response to my publication of those verses from their Koran. Why would I want to rent or sell a gun and hand ammunition to someone who aligns himself with a religion that commands him to kill me?
3) * The barbaric act of beheading an innocent American in Oklahoma by a muslim
* the Boston bombings(by muslims)
* the Foot Hood mass shooting (by a muslim) that killed 13 people and injured over 30 people
* and the murder of 3000 innocent people (by muslims) on 9/11
She writes that two Muslims came to the range last week and caused a disturbance, which added to the recent news about Islamic terrorism home and abroad caused her to make the range a Muslim free zone.
Two muslims walked in to my range last week with allah akbar ring tone and message alert tones on their smart phones. They spoke very little english, one did not have proof of U.S. citizenship, yet they wanted to rent and shoot guns.
Their behavior was so strange, it was unnerving to my patrons. No one would enter the range to shoot while they were there. Some of my customers left.
(can you blame them?)
She also mentions that Muslim supporters of ISIS and al Qaeda are threatening to kill innocent Americans, which is true.
She also addresses the fact that most Muslims won’t pose a problem.
I understand that not all muslims are terrorists. I also believe there are as many Muslims who do not know what is in their Koran as there are Christians who do not know what is in their Bible.
Since I have no way of discerning which muslims will or will not kill in the name of their religion and the commands in their koran…I choose to err on the side of caution for the safety of my patrons.
8) On the issue of religious discrimination:
I view Islam as a theocracy, not a religion. Islam is the union of political, legal, and religious ideologies. In other words, law, religion and state are forged together to form what Muslims refer to as “The Nation of Islam.”
It is given the sovereign qualities of a nation with clerics in the governing body and Sharia law all in one. This is a Theocracy, not a religion.
The US Constitution does not protect a theocracy.
The 1st Amendment is very specific about protecting the rights of individuals from the government, as it concerns the practice of religions, not theocracies.
And that’s where she’s wrong. Or at least, cites opinions and facts that won’t matter.
The U.S. Constitution doesn’t protect theocracy, but it no longer protects our fundamental rights. The very specific First Amendment has been gutted by political correctness.
Here is Act Two.
A bakery owning married couple worked within existing Oregon state law when they refused to bake a cake for a gay couple who, in violation of state law at the time, planned to get married. The law has since been changed
That bakery no longer exists, and the couple face ruinous fines thanks to a state government ruling that their First Amendment religious rights no longer exist.
Earlier this year, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries found “substantial evidence” that Aaron and Melissa Klein, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, discriminated against the lesbian couple.
They now face a fine in excess of $150,000.
In an exclusive interview with The Daily Signal on Friday at the 2014 Values Voter Summit, Aaron said the fee would “definitely” be enough to bankrupt the couple and their five children.
The ordeal started in February 2013, when Rachel Cryer and Laurel Bowman asked the bakery owners to design a wedding cake for their same-sex commitment ceremony.
At the time, Oregon defined marriage as the union between one man and one woman; voters overwhelmingly approved the constitutional amendment in 2004.
Aaron told The Daily Signal he thought he was “well within” his legal rights to decline the service, citing his traditional beliefs that a marriage is between a man and a woman.
In January 2014, the Kleins were charged with violating Oregon’s Equality Act of 2007, a law that protects the rights of the LGBT community.
It wasn’t until months later, May 19, 2014, that a federal judge would declare Oregon’s amendment unconstitutional, paving the way for same-sex marriages.
“Ironically, the state was in violation of its own anti-discrimination laws,” said Aaron.
So the law-abiding couple whose beliefs run back about 5,000 years have lost their business and face bankruptcy, because some rights have become more equal than others.
Eric Holder is still the reigning attorney general in Washington. If he gets wind of the Arkansas gun range owner’s decision to block Muslims from her business, her reasoning won’t matter. Holder will bring the Civil Rights Division down on her.
Or maybe he won’t, since the right to use the range is found in the Second Amendment, which is in disfavor with liberals such as Holder. But all it will take is a Muslim to file a discrimination lawsuit.
President Obama is under fire this week for two things — ISIS grew and metastasized on his watch, and he used Sunday’s 60 Minutes interview to blame his intelligence team, and pretty much everyone else but himself.
The “ISIS are jayvee” comment came out of Obama’s own mouth, and reflected his own thinking — at a time when warnings were coming from the intelligence community indicating that ISIS was a clear and growing threat.
In the 2012 campaign, Obama spoke not only of killing Osama bin Laden; he also said that Al Qaeda had been “decimated.” I pointed out that the flag of Al Qaeda is now flying in Falluja, in Iraq, and among various rebel factions in Syria; Al Qaeda has asserted a presence in parts of Africa, too.
“The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant,” Obama said, resorting to an uncharacteristically flip analogy.
Forget the Lakers, ISIS are the Spurs now. They’ve taken over territory the size of the UK and have a $1 billion stash.
Former (?) Obama spokesman Jay Carney appeared on CNN Monday night. Carney worked in the Obama White House during the rise of the Islamic State. So he is positioned to shed some light on the thinking inside, if he chooses to be candid.
Carney chooses to remain an apologist instead, insisting that when Obama tosses DNI James Clapper under the bus, he isn’t really tossing James Clapper under the bus.
See if you can figure out what MSNBC leaves out of this report.
According to a report in Another Western Dawn News, the Islamic State is set to open its first foreign consulate.
The report says that the Islamic State’s facility will be in Istanbul, Turkey.
Abu-Omar Al-Tunisi, the ISIS de facto head of foreign relations issued a statement, saying that the Islamic Caliphate is determined to launch its first diplomatic mission in a friendly and Muslim country. He further noted that the ISIS hopes that the bilateral relations with Ankara will witness more developments under the aegis of newly-elected president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
ISIS also claims that its consulate in Istanbul will pay the hospital bills of all wounded Islamist militants who traveled to turkey [sic] to receive medical treatment.
Under President Recep Erdogan, Turkey has gone in an increasingly Islamist direction. Turkey now tilts toward Hamas rather than Israel.
If the above report is correct, Turkey may be playing both sides in the ISIS war. Erdogan speculated today that the Turkish army could be used to protect its territory and to fight ISIS in it neighbor Syria.
Erdogan said negotiations are underway to determine how and by which countries the air strikes and a potential ground operation would be undertaken and that Turkey is ready to take part.
“In the distribution of responsibilities, every country will have a certain duty. Whatever is Turkey’s role, Turkey will play it,” he said, adding that an air operation alone was not sufficient.
“You can’t finish off such a terrorist organisation only with air strikes. Ground forces are complementary … You have to look at it as a whole. Obviously I’m not a soldier but the air (operations) are logistical. If there’s no ground force, it would not be permanent,” he said.
He is certainly right about that. He added that a nation should protect its borders. Fancy that.
It’s always worth keeping an eye on Donna Brazile’s Twitter feed. It offers a revealing look into the mind of a big-name leftwinger who has the Democratic Party’s ear.
Brazile is the Obamacare supporter who tweeted her surprise that after that law passed, her insurance rate went up.
Brazile wants to love-bomb ISIS rather than take them on militarily. Because “hate is not a family value,” or something.
Now, this towering ignoramus wants to shred the Constitution to shut down “loudmouths” along with some of her fellow one-percenters.
We need a new constitution: Here’s how we save American democracy from charlatans, loudmouths and the 1 percent http://t.co/klyPA1pMl0
— Donna Brazile (@donnabrazile) September 28, 2014
Brazile doesn’t follow that up with any concrete proposals. She links to a Salon.com article — they’re over on the far left. So the idea of scrapping the Constitution isn’t a case of Brazile just mouthing off. Leftist are talking about it among themselves. As is typical when they’re having a team dialogue, Tea Partiers, Antonin Scalia and Citizens United serve as monsters. Those are “tells” — they want a leftwing Constitution to stifle speech and thought from the right.
As Powerline notes, scrapping the Constitution has been a goal of many on the left in the “progressive” movement since the days of Woodrow Wilson. The racist progressive president and KKK supporter consistently argued for replacing the Constitution.
Brazile, who managed Al Gore’s 2000 campaign, gives us a trio of targets that serve as “tells” — “charlatans,” loudmouths and the one-percent.” “Charlatans” and “loudmouths” are subjective terms in politics. One person’s loudmouth is another person’s hero for speaking truth to power. She probably means people like Sen. Ted Cruz, the Koch brothers, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Rupert Murdoch, Fox News, the left’s usual targets of hate.
Donna Brazile wants to rewrite the Constitution so that it serves her own political interests and gives her more power and makes her richer. This is not reform. Greed and lust are really at the heart of that tweet.
In an exchange that is sure not to make it on ABC’s evening newscast tonight, reporter Jon Karl went through several warnings regarding the rise of ISIS with White House spokesman Josh Earnest.
Karl grilled Earnest, and Earnest’s response is that “everyone” underestimated ISIS and was surprised at their ability to sweep across from Syria into Iraq and take and hold a huge amount of territory.
Earnest brings up DNI James Clapper, and Karl hits back that Clapper is not the only person who deals with intelligence in the US government. Karl brings up Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Brett McGurk’s warning from November 14, 2013, and a military warning from February 2014. In between both warnings, President Obama gave his infamous “ISIS are JV” interview.
Karl lists three times that President Obama was warned, or should have been, about the rise of ISIS. They include McGurk’s warning, US Ambassador to Iraq Robert Beecroft’s warning on January 23, 2014, and Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s warning on February 11, 2014.
Obama ignored them all. Now he claims that the intelligence community got it wrong.
The president clearly doesn’t care about the truth, which is that he missed clear warnings as ISIS rose. He chose to downplay the threat.
The next question that needs to be asked is why did he miss them? Or did he choose to ignore them?
NBC Report: Kurds Frustrated Because US Airstrikes Are Not Hitting ISIS Hard Enough (Update: ISIS Agrees)
NBC’s Richard Engel is embedded with Kurdish fighters on the ground in the Iraq-Syria-Turkey border region. He reports that the Kurds are becoming frustrated with the lack of power that the US is showing in the fight against ISIS.
Engel appeared with Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC today. He said that Kurds in Syria are “very eager” to get into the fight. He also described what he is seeing.
“Right now i’m on a hill overlooking an ongoing battle between ISIS fighters and Syrian Kurds,” Engel said. “The ISIS fighters are operating in the open. They have an open field and they are dressed in black and have been exchanging gunfire and we are watching the battle unfold and we have been talking to other Kurds who have been watching the same thing and they are very frustrated because they say if the US wants to carry out air strikes and wants to attack ISIS, there they are. They are operating not in a hidden way. They are easy to find. Obviously the US is carrying out air strikes, just not on a scale that the Kurdish fighters would like to see.”
Engel said that many of the Kurdish fighters decided that they couldn’t wait for US airstrikes any longer, so they charged the ISIS fighters despite the fact that the Kurds didn’t have any weapons to fight with.
Update: CNN interviewed an ISIS fighter who agrees — the US-led airstrikes are not hitting the group very hard. They were prepared for the strikes, and hid themselves and their equipment ahead of time.
President Obama keeps promising that there will be no American boots on the ground in the fight against ISIS. Hardly anyone believes him, according to a new poll.
More than seven in 10 Americans say the United States will end up using its own combat troops against ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria, despite President Barack Obama’s assertion that U.S. combat troops won’t be on the ground there.
This finding comes from a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Annenberg poll, which also shows that Americans are divided over the merits of using U.S. combat troops – 45 percent are in favor of using them if military commanders think they’re the best way to defeat the ISIS army, while 37 percent are opposed.
[A]ccording to the poll, 72 percent of Americans believe the United States will still use its ground troops anyway against ISIS, versus just 20 percent who think it won’t.
I believe that Obama will not insert more Americans on the ground to fight ISIS until and unless he absolutely has to. He has tipped his hand repeatedly, by calling out Yemen and Somalia as counterterrorism successes — the Islamic State is here to stay.
More “workplace violence?”
In a bizarre coincidence, a fired Oklahoma City nursing home employee was arrested Friday after a co-worker reported he threatened to cut her head off.
Jacob Mugambi Muriithi, 30, is being held in the Oklahoma County jail on a terrorism complaint. His bail is set at $1 million.
The woman was not identified.
She said Muriithi identified himself as a Muslim and said he “represented ISIS and that ISIS kills Christians,” the detective told a judge in the affidavit. The two had not worked together before.
The woman said she asked him why they kill Christians and he replied, “This is just what we do,” the detective reported.
“The victim said Jacob asked her what time she got off work and she replied by asking him in a joking manner if he was going to kill her,’ the detective wrote. “Jacob told the victim, ‘Yes,’ he was going to cut her head off. The victim asked Jacob what he was going to cut her head off with and he said, ‘A blade,’ then told her after he did it he was going to post it on Facebook.
“The victim said Jacob was serious when speaking and never made any statements that he was joking or playing around.”
James O’Keefe goes undercover with Battleground Texas again. According to his investigation, Wendy Davis’ troops are still skirting Texas election laws. Take a look.
The Emma Bauer who appears in the video is this Emma Bauer — confirmed as a Wendy Davis and Battleground Texas operative.
During his appearance on 60 Minutes Sunday, President Barack Obama had the chance to admit that he got a whole lot about Iraq wrong.
He could have admitted that he got the surge wrong in 2007, when he denounced it and declared that there is no military solution to the problems in Iraq and never was. That was wrong. Obama opposed that surge, which worked and bequeathed a quiescent Iraq to him in 2009. He later implemented a surge of his own in Afghanistan — half-hearted though it was.
Obama could also have admitted that he withdrew U.S. troops from Iraq too soon, a decision made for politics that ended up creating the conditions for ISIS to swallow up a large chunk of Iraq and Syria.
Obama could have also admitted that he got ISIS wrong, when he called them the “JV” of terrorism. They are in fact an offshoot of al Qaeda, just as the so-called Khorasan group is an offshoot of al Qaeda — the jihadist group that he claims to have “decimated” and sent scurrying “on the run.” He could have admitted that none of that was true, that al Qaeda is mestasizing from the border regions in Pakistan-Afghanistan to Iraq and Syria to Yemen to Somalia to Boko Haram in Nigeria. And possibly to Oklahoma and New Jersey and Portland.
Instead of admitting any of that, Obama blamed one of his subordinates.
Steve Kroft: I understand all the caveats about these regional groups. But this is what an army of 40,000 people, according to some of the military estimates I heard the other day, very well-trained, very motivated.
President Obama: Well, part of it was that…
Steve Kroft: What? How did they end up where they are in control of so much territory? Was that a complete surprise to you?
President Obama: Well I think, our head of the intelligence community, Jim Clapper, has acknowledged that I think they underestimated what had been taking place in Syria.
“They” work for you, Mr. President.
This isn’t the first time that James Clapper has made a monumental, deadly screw-up, as you’ll see on the next page.
Alicia Keys’ timing on this probably couldn’t be worse. She strips down and paints a peace sign on her belly at the same time an Islamist army threatens the world and a monster beheaded an innocent woman in Oklahoma. Only a good guy with a gun stopped him.
Yet here she is, being all empowered. Naked, to push for gun control.
Try confronting an Islamist madman like this.
Body armor and a powerful firearm would be the smarter way to go.
The New York Times praises Keys, without noticing something awful.
ALICIA KEYS is a superstar singer who has mostly kept her clothes on and gossip off. So what is she doing in this photo, dressed only in a peace sign?
Her answer has to do with the purpose of life. Last month, as she was sickened by grim news — from the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., to the toll in Gaza and Syria — a friend of hers lobbed a provocative question about the meaning of our existence: Why are you here?
“Nobody had asked me that question before,” Keys recalled.
Alright, I doubt that that’s true. Surely someone, somewhere asked Alicia Keys what her purpose in life is. But that’s minor.
The awful thing that the Times notices and then fails to notice is that many celebrities take up some of the same causes that Keys is taking up. The Times hails Bono (who hasn’t really done gun control or gay marriage, but has done lots of other causes over the years) for being a cause-driven artist.
There is, of course, a tradition of socially conscious musicians, and Bono has done as much as anybody to highlight the challenges of global poverty. Keys seems less inclined to lobby at Group of 8 summit meetings; rather, she says, she wants to work with fans at the grass-roots level.
But Bono doesn’t have to get naked to support any of his causes. He has been pretty successful at his clothed activism, mostly because he chooses his issues carefully and he understands that offending and alienating people is counter productive. Too many artists just let their egos get in the way.
Keys feels the need to strip off. She and the Times see this as “empowering.”
Really? Is it empowering that an insanely successful woman and mother believes that getting naked before the entire world is the best way to draw attention to her cause?
Or is it just plain old attention-whoring from her, and sucking up to leftwing celebrities from the New York Times?
A young Muslim man is accused of beheading a co-worker in Oklahoma.
Sgt. Jeremy Lewis says the alleged suspect, 30-year-old Alton Nolen had just been fired when he drove to the front of the business, hit a vehicle and walked inside.
He walked into the front office area where he met 54-year-old Colleen Hufford and began attacking her with a knife.
Sgt. Lewis confirms the type of knife used in the attack is the same kind used at the plant.
Lewis confirms that Hufford was stabbed several times and that Nolen “severed her head.”
At that point, Lewis claims Nolen met 43-year-old Traci Johnson and began attacking her with the same knife.
Officials say at that point, Mark Vaughan, an Oklahoma County reserve deputy and a former CEO of the business, shot him as he was actively stabbing Johnson.
A good guy with a gun stopped a monster with a knife. This situation would have been far worse if Vaughan had not been carrying his firearm. Concealed carry permit applications will likely spike nationwide after this.
There’s no suggestion that Nolen targeted his victims personally. He was attacking the employees of the company “at random,” according to police.
There’s this for a possible motivation:
The FBI is now looking into Nolen’s background after his former co-workers said he tried to convert them to Islam after recently converting himself.
We’ll see if that pans out.
Nolen does have a history of violence.
According to the state corrections department, Nolen was convicted in January 2011 of multiple felony drug offenses, assault and battery on a police officer and escape from detention. He was released from prison in March 2013. Neither woman had any relationship with Nolen.
And radical Muslims have a strategy of using prisons as places to proselytize. Radical mosques give these violent outcasts homes, many for the first time in their lives. ISIS has come along as the latest radical group to provide motivation for attacking infidels.
If the Nidal Hasan case is any guide, and it probably is, the official federal word will be that Nolen killed in a fit of “workplace violence.”
Rational Americans will see that and hear the horrible 9-1-1 call and rightly determine that the Obama government is unwilling to see the truth, and is unwilling to protect us.
Update: Nolen is at least a social media jihadist.
The Islamist State’s chief propagandist is believed to be a wealthy American. His name is Ahmad Abousamra, he is 32 years old, and he is the son of a Boston doctor. He is young and he is not poor, and he is not ignorant. He is also not unacquainted with western notions of individual freedom. He just rejects them.
He was born and raised in France and his formal education does not have Islamist overtones at all. He attended Xaverian Brothers Catholic high school and Northeastern University, where he made the dean’s list.
He is but one of thousands of westerners who are now fighting for ISIS — including 3,000 Europeans.
The number of Europeans joining Islamist fighters in Syria and Iraq has risen to more than 3,000, the EU’s anti-terrorism chief has told the BBC.
Gilles de Kerchove also warned that Western air strikes would increase the risk of retaliatory attacks in Europe.
US-led forces have launched more than 200 air strikes against Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq since August and on Monday began targeting IS in Syria.
The UK parliament is due to vote on possible air strikes in Iraq on Friday.
IS – also known as Isil or Isis – has seized large parts of Iraq and Syria in recent months.
Mr de Kerchove said the number of 3,000 included all those who have been to the region, including those who have returned and those who have been killed there.
That’s about one-tenth of the total fighting force that the Islamic State is now believed to have in the field — western-raised Muslims who can freely travel to and from the battlefield, while journalist Stephen Hayes gets tagged on the terrorism watch list.
How did we get here? Let’s explore that question on the next page.
State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf appeared on MSNBC this morning to discuss the US airstrikes in Syria and the Khorasan group. That group, not ISIS, is President Obama’s stated reason for launching air strikes inside Syrian territory. The president’s letter to Congress doesn’t even mention ISIS at all, despite the fact that the group beheaded two Americans and has broadcast its intent to attack America itself on social media.
So Harf turns up on MSNBC to deal with two primary questions. The first, are the US airstrikes actually degrading ISIS?
The question is relevant, because the FBI director has said that he doesn’t think the airstrikes have degraded ISIS.
Watch as MSNBC host Kristen Welker seems to lose patience with Harf’s non-answer.
The second question, does the Khorasan group actually have the capacity to attack America? Pay close attention to how Harf answers.
HOST Kristen Welker: Are there any credible threats that you know of right now coming from that group that Americans need to know about?
Harf: Well, as many of us have said, we are watching that group. We know they have the intention to strike at the United States. that’s something that’s ongoing right now. That process of looking at what the actual threat is. But what I will say is the action we’ve taken against them already has had an impact.
The Obama administration’s spokespeople have their talking points: These groups have the intention of attacking America, and we have the intention of degrading them. Afghanistan, Yemem and Somalia are, according to Harf, examples of the success we’re aiming for in striking Syria.
If that’s really where we are strategically, then we have a recipe for endless, pointless war that will achieve nothing — other than to eventually bankrupt America.