Wednesday, November 14, 2012
President Barack Obama knows who the enemy is. September 11, 2012 was clear evidence that the killing of Osama Bin Laden was not a fait accompli when it comes to ending the terrorist threat. Obama is reluctant to openly admit that radical Islam’s open declaration of war presents a danger to America. The state of Israel shows no such hesitancy. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently stood before the United Nations and warned of a medieval war of civilizations that is set to erupt global security. A nuclear armed Iran is far different, Netanyahu pointed out, than a nuclear armed Russia. Netanyahu emphasized the distinction between the two ideologies of Iran and Soviet Russia:
“Militant Jihadists behave very differently from Secular Marxists. There were no Soviet suicide bombers. Yet, Iran produces hordes of them. Deterrence worked with the Soviets because every time Soviets chose between their ideology and survival, they chose survival. But, deterrence may not work with Iranians when they get their nuclear weapons.”
Netanyahu went on to explain that the difference between the two aggressors is the value placed on life. Iran anticipates its own destruction as a price to pay for bombing the globe into chaos:
“A great scholar of the Middle East, Bernard Lewis, put it best: ‘For the Ayatollahs of Iran, mutual assured destruction is not a deterrent, it’s an inducement. Iran’s apocalyptic leaders believe that a medieval Holy Man will reappear in the wake of a devastating holy war, thereby insuring that their brand of radical Islam will rule the earth.’ Now, that’s not just what they believe, that is what is guiding their policies and their actions.”
Americans and nations worldwide must recognize the seriousness and inflexibility of Iran’s goal towards mutual destruction and the Obama administration’s role to date in the rapidly developing global crisis. Inexplicably to many, Barack Obama unleashed uprisings in the Middle East while implementing a radical Socialist agenda to “transform America” back home.
The overall intent is not as bifurcated as it may appear. The radical Islamists are waging a war of religion while the radical left is waging a war of ideas. The mutual goal is the toppling of a republic based, Judeo-Christian founded and Constitutionally-grounded America. Jihadists want America to become an Islamic state like Iran, whereas the left wants a “transformation of America” to a Socialist nation. Both systems devour individual rights and freedoms. Key to both movements is total elimination of all belief systems counter to their own. Were they to succeed, as natural enemies, Islamists and Socialists will eventually target one another. Radical Islam condemns to death all that reject a belief in Allah. Socialists constitute much of America’s Progressive-Left and have consistently legislated God out of American society, seeking to become god to the masses.
President Obama is the titular head of the Progressive-Left. President Obama understands Islam having studied the Koran in Indonesia. Part of the curriculum was that The Twelfth Imam or Twelfth Mahdi is the Islamic savior — its Islamic messiah. Islam requires that in order for the Twelfth Imam to reveal himself, the world must be in global war. Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reportedly believes that he has the divine mission to “hasten the return” of the 12th Mahdi. Destroying Israel, then America, erupts the world into the chaos needed for the Mahdi’s return.
Some 600 years before Islam, Christ appeared during His first coming as God-incarnate. The Christian Messiah is the Savior Jesus Christ. Islam reveres Jesus as a lesser prophet and not God, which puts Islam at inextricable odds with Christianity. Iranian President Ahmadinejad believes the “Mahdi” or “Twelfth Imam” will appear publicly during a time of great disaster, with Jesus at his side, to bring peace to a war-torn world. It is said that the 12th Mahdi will take Jesus to Mecca to replace the Bible with the Koran so that Christians worldwide will convert to Islam. A “Muslim anti-Christ” is also to surface in the world and falsely convince Jews that he is their “Jesus the Messiah” that they have long awaited.
An “Islamic Jesus,” it is said, will kill all Jews and behead anyone worldwide who does not accept Islam as the only true religion. The Islamic Mahdi will set-up his kingdom in Jerusalem, establish a worldwide Caliphate, along with Shariah Law, and rule the world. Homosexuals will be killed and women will remain as property and oppressed. Such belief is a driving force of today’s war on non-Islamic nations; an ancient war based on fundamental Islam that has entrenched the globe in a war on terror. Those who identify themselves as moderate Muslims declare that only extremists hold such beliefs.
The funding by Iran of the upheaval in the Middle East, the positioning of radical Muslim groups in governments across the region from Lebanon to Egypt cannot simply be dismissed as a war of ideologies between the West and the Muslim world. By Ahmadinejad’s admission, Iran’s role in the turmoil in the Middle East is to set the stage for the return of the Twelfth Imam. Obama’s years studying Islam should have taught him that he cannot schmooze leaders like Ahmadinejad, gain their favor, and unmoor them from what they believe is the only reason they exist on the planet. Islamic radicals seek world chaos targeting first Israel and then the United States. For Barack Obama to in anyway diminish the radical Islamist threat prioritizes his personally held biases that jeopardize America’s safety.
Netanyahu has recognized the danger and has openly warned of it for more than 15 years:
“Shockingly, some people have begun to peddle the absurd notion that a nuclear armed Iran would actually stabilize the Middle East. Yeah, right. That’s like saying a nuclear armed Al-Qaeda would usher in an era of universal peace. I speak about it now because the Iranian nuclear calendar does not wait for anyone or anything. I speak about it now because the hour is getting late, very late. I speak about it now because when it comes to the survival of my country, it is not only my right to speak, but my duty to speak. And, I believe that this is the duty of every responsible [world] leader who wants to preserve peace.”
Netanyahu warned that it is not just Israel and the United States, but the world at large that is being targeted:
“Militant Islam has many branches – from the rulers of Iran with their Revolutionary Guards to Al Qaeda terrorists to the radical cells lurking in every part of the globe. But, despite their differences, they are all rooted in the same bitter soil of intolerance. That intolerance is directed first at their fellow Muslims, and then to Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, secular people, anyone who doesn’t submit to their unforgiving creed.”
The MOral Liberal
"The planes are firing rockets at the neighbourhoods of Qaboun and Jobar. They are flying high and you can hear the impact of the rockets," opposition activists Yasmine al-Shami said by phone from Damascus.
Jobar is a working class Sunni Muslim district that has been at the forefront of the 20 month revolt against President Bashar al-Assad.
Voice of Russia, Reuters
BEIJING, November 14 (RIA Novosti) - China has unveiled for the first time its Yi Long unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) local media reported on Wednesday, which its makers claim is far cheaper than its Israeli and American analogs at less than $1 million.
The UAV, which was unveiled at the Air China aerospace show in Zhuhai on Tuesday, has been under development by the Chengdu aircraft-building institute since 2005, and made a first test-flight in 2008, and has only been previously shown in model form.
Yi Long can be used for military or civil tasks, the makers say, including geophysical or post-disaster survey work. The aircraft has a length of 9.34 meters, a wingspan of 14 meters and a mass of just over a ton. It has a ceiling of 5,300 meters and a range of 4,000 kilometers, with an endurance of up to 20 hours.
Pictures shown on Sky News show it has having a similar configuration to the US-made MQ-9 Reaper, with a pusher engine, V-tail, long-span straight wing, and fuselage shape configured for low radar cross-section. It was also shown armed with under-wing missiles, and an electro-optical sensor turret under the forward fuselage.
The Chinese say the UAV has "already successfully entered the international market," but provided no further details.
Syrian regime forces reportedly launched attacks into the Golan Heights in the early hours of Wednesday, shelling over Beer Ajam and other areas nearby, according to the SANA Revolution activist group.
In recent days, Israeli troops have twice fired across the disengagement line that was established in 1974, responding to apparently errant fire, aiming at their Syrian counterparts for the first time since the end of the 1973 war.
The upheaval is something of an anomaly for the strategic plateau, which Israel captured during the 1967 Six Day War, and annexed in 1981, in a move never recognized by the international community.
Last year, violence erupted on the disengagement line twice, when protesters from Syria sought to breach the line and enter the Israeli-occupied side of the plateau.
Israeli troops opened fire, killing four in May, and at least 10 in the second incident a month later in 2011.
But the area has been largely quiet for years. Some 20,000 Israeli settlers live in the verdant region, many farming or producing wine, alongside 18,000 Druze residents who remain of the original Syrian population of 150,000.
The latest incidents illustrate a clear change in the dynamic in the area, according to Itamar Rabinovich, a former ambassador to the United States who has represented Israel at peace talks with Syria.
"This is still minor," he told AFP news agency. "But the potential of it developing into something big and nasty is there.”
"Clearly, the Israeli government decision was to nip it in the bud and to respond strongly in order to send a clear message that it would not be tolerated."
Michael Eppel, a Middle East expert at Haifa University, said the violence appeared limited for now.
"The Syrian army is not in a position to do some big action; it's so busy elsewhere," he said. "But disorder, anarchy, this close to the border, is troublesome for Israel."
The army has so far said it believes the fire from Syria, including mortar shells and bullets, is accidental. But Rabinovich speculated that it could also represent the "local initiative" of a commander on the ground.
Whatever the impetus, Israeli officials have shown little appetite for escalation.
"The border has been quiet since the (1973) Yom Kippur war and we want it to stay that way," Israel President Shimon Peres said on Tuesday.
"None of us are keen on lighting fires or fanning the flames."
Continued Syrian fire, Rabinovich said, would force Israel to "walk a tightrope."
"They need to contain it, but to avoid it becoming a big drama or very serious," Eppel added. "They have to deter, okay, but not to make some additional crisis that will not serve Israel."
Whether or not the situation worsens, on-off peace talks about the return of the Golan are on deep freeze for now.
Up until mid-March 2011, when mass protests engulfed the regime of Bashar al-Assad, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was reportedly involved in negotiations that would have seen Israel concede the Golan, despite its strategic importance.
"In the event of a war, it's the high ground... Being on the Golan Heights is a big advantage in military terms," Rabinovich said.
"Israel has a very important monitoring station on Mount Hermon and... the whole water regime here is fundamentally affected by what goes on in the Golan, he explained. That was a reference to the main water sources that feed the Jordan River and the Sea of Galilee, which provide Israel with around 30 percent of its water.
Conceding the Golan would also be hard for Israelis psychologically, Rabinovich added.
"Israelis may lay a claim to the West Bank, but they don't go there, but Israelis do go to the Golan Heights, all the time," he said.
"But right now, it's not an issue," he added.
"The (Syrian) regime is doomed... so it's not a partner for negotiations, and nobody knows when the civil war will be over."
Al Arabiya News
Arab terrorists Wednesday attackedthe south with four Katyusha rockets from the Sinai, an Israeli securitysource confirmed. No one was injured, and no property damage was reported, but at least one missile exploded between homes.
One of the rockets was fired towards the community of Bnei Netzarim without causing any injuries, asecurity source said. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood government is ostensibly responsible for protecting the Sinai from terrorists.
"What we know for sure is that there were four explosions in Bnei Netzarim and there is a sense within the army that they were fired from Sinai and not from Gaza," the source said.
Elisheva Yanki, who was forced out of her home in Gush Katif in 2005 and moved to the community of Naveh next to Bnei Netzarim, confirmed hearing the explosions but could not say from where they came. "These explosions took us straight back to the days when they used to fire
on us in Gush Katif," she told the NRG news website.
The missile attacks came after a 24-hour lull in rocket launches on Israel, following a bombardment of more than 150 missiles and mortar shells since last Friday.
Bnei Netzarim, referring to the children of the former Gaza community that was destroyed by the government in 2005, is located approximately three miles from Gaza.
The Sharon government ordered the expulsion of all Jews and the withdrawal of all military personnel from Gaza in the summer of 2005, promising that the “disengagement” would end rocket fire on the south.
Since then, Hamas and allied terrorists have fired thousands of missiles on Israel, reaching as far north as the southern edge of metropolitan Tel Aviv.
Israel National News
Iran’s air defense chief Gen. Farzad Esmaili boasted Tuesday, Nov. 12, that a new air defense system was successfully tested during a “massive” ongoing military exercise, which he said was “a message and a strong slap to those countries that threaten [us].”
DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the six-day Iranian air defense drill is Tehran’s answer to the joint three-week US-Israeli maneuver - Austere Challenge 2012 – which is drilling defenses against an Iranian or Syrian ballistic missile attack on Israel.
Monday, four US and Israeli Patriot anti-missiles missiles shot down four out of four mock Iranian missiles from the Israeli air base at Palmachim. Tuesday, the Iranians paraded a new air defense system modeled on the US Hawk system. Earlier reports said the new surface-to-air system is named “Mersad,” or Ambush. It was capable of locking on a flying object at a distance of 80 kilometers (50 miles) and able to hit from 45 kilometers (30 miles) away, Iranian state TV said.
The Iranians have apparently upgraded the American Hawk system, say our military sources, but not all its touted specifications are confirmed. Even if they are, Iran’s latest military exercise shows it cannot match missile interceptors on the high order of the US and Israeli Aegis, THAAD and Arrow. These systems are capable of pinpointing ballistic and cruise missiles the moment they are launched by means of the highly sophisticated US X-band radar stations, one of which is located in the Israeli Negev, and shooting them down hundreds of kilometers before they approach their targets.
The anti-missile systems launched from the Israeli coast Monday practiced for the first time US and Israeli ability to intercept Iranian cruise missiles speeding toward the Israeli shore from Iranian warships or merchant vessels cruising in the Mediterranean Sea or launched by Hizballah marines. Specialized Hizballah units have been trained in Iran of late in the handling of short-range cruise missiles launched from large commando speedboats.
American and other Western intelligence agencies have received word that Iran is outfitting with cruise missile launch pads civilian merchant vessels that would sail close to the Israeli coast in a war.
The US and Israeli planners of the joint maneuver are working on the assumption that the Iranian stealth drone which entered Israeli air space from Lebanon on Oct. 6, after spending an hour and twenty minutes over the Mediterranean, was performing a part in an Iranian-Hizballah exercise. This exercise is thought to have tested the use of an Iranian drone for guiding shipboard cruise missiles launched from the sea.
The UAV passed across Israeli skies, our military sources noted, at exactly the same time as a Palestinian Hamas military exercise took place in the Gaza Strip.
Tehran has clearly been building up to the present exercise. A week before the drone operation, Gen. Ferzad Ismaili, head of Iranian air defenses, said, “We may be faced with full-scale and all-out electronic warfare.”
The Iranian military exercise under way now over almost the entire eastern half of the country, with the participation of jet fighters, drones and more than 8,000 troops, is one of the most extensive of its kind to take place in recent months.
The federal government kicked off the 2013 budget year with a $120 billion deficit in October, a $22 billion increase from this time last year.
You know what this means, right? It means that we’re well on our way to our fifth straight $1 trillion-plus annual deficit.
Hooray for us.
The deficit, as many Blaze readers know, is the amount of money the government decides to borrow when revenues fall short of expenses. Over the past three years, revenue has fallen below 16 percent of the total economy, as measured by the gross domestic product (GDP), while spending has exceeded 22 percent of GDP. In an attempt to fill this gap, the U.S. government has borrowed, borrowed, and borrowed some more, pushing the federal debt to $16.2 trillion.
The government is expected to hit its borrowing limit of $16.39 trillion by the end of December, by which time Congress will probably just raise the debt-ceiling — again.
Tax revenue increased 13 percent from the same month last year to $184.3 billion. But spending rose 16.4 percent to $304.3 billion. Spending was held down last October by a quirk in the calendar: the first day of the month fell on a Saturday, so some benefits were paid in September 2011.
The government ran a $1.1 trillion annual budget deficit in the fiscal year that ended in September. That was lower than the previous year but, you know, it’s still over $1 trillion dollars!
Obama’s presidency has coincided with four straight $1 trillion-plus deficits — the first in history and a record he distracted from during his re-election campaign with things like Big Bird, binders, and the supposed “war on women.”
And he won.
The size and scope of this year’s deficit will largely depend on what happens with a package of tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect in January unless the White House and Congress reach a budget deal to avoid the so-called “fiscal cliff.”
If the economy goes over the cliff, this year’s deficit would shrink to $641 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office. But the CBO also warns that the economy would sink into recession in the first half of 2013.
If the White House and Congress can reach a budget deal that extends the tax cuts and avoids the spending cuts, the deficit will end up roughly $1 trillion for the budget year, the CBO says.
But even if lawmakers agree to a deal that extends most of the tax cuts and spending provisions, the deficit for this year will still be about $1 trillion.
The government has run annual deficits for more than a decade and hit a record $1.41 trillion in 2009, Obama’s first year in office. Tax revenue plummeted during the recession downturn, while the government spent at a breakneck pace on its stimulus programs.
President George W. Bush also ran annual deficits through most of his two terms in office after he won approval for broad tax cuts and launched wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The last time the government ran an annual surplus was in 2001.
Austerity has spawned general strikes in individual countries across the troubled European Union. But this week may see something to add to the union’s tensions: a coordinated, multi-national mega-strike. Organized labor plans a general strike against the E.U.’s austerity policies, borderless and spanning the south of the continent. With more than 25 million people out of work, Europe’s biggest unions have vowed to lead marches and demonstrations on Nov. 14 that unite opposition parties, activist movements like Spain’s M15 and a growing sea of unemployed to challenge their national governments, banking leaders, the IMF and EU policymakers to abandon austerity cuts ahead of a high-stakes budgetmeeting in Brussels later this month.
What makes Wednesday’s strike even more threatening to Europe’s managerial elite is the strong support it is receiving from traditional labor groups that rarely send their members into the streets—foremost, among them, the European Trade Union Confederation, representing 85 labor organizations from 36 countries, and totaling some 60 million members. “We have never seen an international strike with unions across borders fighting for the same thing—it’s not just Spain, not just Portugal, it’s many countries demanding that we change our structure,” says Alberto Garzón, a Spanish congressman with the United Left party which holds 7% of seats in the Spanish Congress. “It’s important to understand this is a new form of protest.”
The strike is expected to cause near or total shutdowns of the four most debt-battered countries—Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece—as all major unions march to oppose devastating cuts in salaries, pensions, benefits and social services, meanwhile protesting tax hikes and harsh labor reforms. There will be solidarity marches elsewhere. Though not formally striking, France’s largest labor groups signaled support with dozens of demonstrations planned nationwide. Rail workers in Belgium are striking; so are labor groups in Malta and Cyprus. In Britain, organizer Andrew Burgin of the Coalition of Resistance said marches and demonstrations there would “forge links across Europe, showing Britain’s austerity struggles as part of a pan-European, international movement.” And from Germany and Switzerland to Turkey, eastern Europe and Scandinavia, workers and many organizations have promised to rally around the single message: No to austerity.
Fabian Zuleeg, a chief economist at the European Policy Centre in Brussels, sees the phenomenon as a “Europeanization of the debate,” where labor movements “now recognize that if they want to have an impact, they have to take their protests up to a higher level, a European level.” Just as capital moves freely across national boundaries, a new borderlessness of protest is now waiting there to meet it—which could be a game-changer, forcing nations and the continent as a whole to re-think taxation, government spending and other fiscal policies. Some, like Ben Tonra, a professor of international relations at University College Dublin, liken the continental strike to a creation of a new European public space.
“With a shift in political forces in lots of member states, a shift at the E.U. level away from austerity to a focus on jobs [will] occur,” says Tonra. The real question Wednesday, he adds, isn’t how much noise the southern countries make but whether there is “a new and enlarging cast of characters, [with] comparable demonstrations in Germany, in Austria, in Finland—E.U. countries that don’t have histories of mass mobilizations over austerity.”
Austerity opponents say the strike isn’t intended to grind down Europe’s already weakened economy, but to send a clear message to governments and the Troika—the European Commission, European Central Bank and the IMF—that austerity cuts aren’t working to solve the debt crisis, but instead are worsening the problem. “The situation is urgent: we have to stop this downward spiral and reverse the austerity measures, which even the IMF admits are wrong,” says Patricia Grillo, a spokesperson for the ETUC.
So what real impact will the strike have on policymakers heading to Brussels for a budgetary showdown Nov.22-23? It is potentially a turning point in the debate over austerity which has pitted Europe’s banking class against its citizens; it may also set up wider, more energized protests ahead. But, “it’s very unlikely that it will overturn the general direction in which we’re moving,” says Zuleeg of the European Policy Centre, although “it might signal to leaders that there are other things they must take into consideration, like unemployment.”
A wise wakeup, suggests Garzón of Spain. Because “it’s a beginning of mobilizations,” he says. “it’s not an end.”
Read more: http://world.time.com/2012/11/13/europe-faces-a-multi-national-general-strike-against-austerity/#ixzz2CChleZnT