The Global War On You Know Who

"The West is facing a concerted effort by Islamic jihadists, the motives and goals of whom are largely ignored by the Western media, to destroy the West and bring it forcibly into the Islamic world -- and to commit violence to that end even while their overall goal remains out of reach. That effort goes under the general rubric of jihad."
-- Robert Spencer

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Schroeder's "Economic Miracle"

A man on his fourth wife, whose platform consists of the welfare state and anti-Americanism, clearly gives scant thought to the future. He's gone now, but the future is here: Germans emigrate in record numbers.
Germans are leaving their country in record numbers but unlike previous waves of migrants who fled 19th century poverty or 1930s Nazi terror, these modern day refugees are trying to escape a new scourge -- unemployment.

Flocking to places as far away as the United States, Canada and Australia as well as Norway, the Netherlands and Austria more than 150,000 Germans packed their bags and left in 2004 -- the greatest exodus in any single year since the late 1940s.

High unemployment that lingers at levels of more than 20 percent in some parts of Germany and dim prospects for any improvement are the key factors behind the migration.
You mean German 'yoots' aren't out rioting, torching cars, and burning down schools and churches? So much for "root causes."
According to the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden, the 150,667 Germans who left last year went to 200 countries -- the United States was the top destination with 12,976, following by Switzerland (12,818), Austria (8,532) and Britain (7,842).

The numbers leaving Germany are modest considering there are nearly 5 million unemployed, even though the trend seems to be gaining pace. There has been scant economic growth in Germany for years and property prices have barely changed in a decade.
Like other west European countries, Germany has been mass-importing non-skilled Muslim immigrants while exporting increasing numbers of entreprenurial natives. Besides an unemployment rate over 10% -- the highest since WWII -- the unintended (but foreseeable) consequences of this radical demographic shift continue to be ignored. In the former East,
Discontent with this situation is increasingly reflected in the results of local elections. In the most recent elections to the regional parliament in the eastern state of Saxony in September 2004, the PDS [Communist Party] received 23.6% of the votes, with the NPD [Neo-Nazi Party] winning 9.2% of the votes. The mainstream party of German chancellor Gerhard Schröder, SPD [Democratic Party], only received 9.8% of the votes.
Unchecked immigration is a major concern generally ignored by the ruling elite, so people are shopping for other options -- and finding them in extremist political parties. Meanwhile, the same immigration no one will do anything about has produced another growth industry: honor killings in Berlin.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Stupid, Irresponsible . . . and Pretty Cool

Check this out. The 16-year-old son of Iraqi-American immigrants ran off to do some "immersion journalism" in Baghdad over the holidays. He doesn't speak Arabic, had the bejebus scared outta him, and had a nice chat with the Screamin' Eagles, who got him home. Surprisingly, the MSM printed his story, since it sure ain't the one they want anyone to hear.
He wrote half the essay while in the United States, half in Kuwait, and e-mailed it to his teachers Dec. 15 while in the Kuwait City airport.

"There is a struggle in Iraq between good and evil, between those striving for freedom and liberty and those striving for death and destruction," he wrote.

"Those terrorists are not human but pure evil. For their goals to be thwarted, decent individuals must answer justice's call for help. Unfortunately altruism is always in short supply. Not enough are willing to set aside the material ambitions of this transient world, put morality first, and risk their lives for the cause of humanity. So I will."

"I want to experience during my Christmas the same hardships ordinary Iraqis experience everyday, so that I may better empathize with their distress," he wrote.

Farris Hassan says he thinks a trip to the Middle East is a healthy vacation compared with a trip to Colorado for holiday skiing.

"You go to, like, the worst place in the world and things are terrible," he said. "When you go back home you have such a new appreciation for all the blessing you have there, and I'm just going to be, like, ecstatic for life."

His plans on his return to Florida: "Kiss the ground and hug everyone."
And the AP is calling him naive? I think the MSM could all learn a thing or two from this young man. Can't wait till he goes to college and all his professors wax poetic about Zarqawi's "freedom fighters" while condemning Western civilization. Good on ya, kid. Stick a purple finger in their face for me.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Surprise: Another German Hostage Crisis

Any asshat can tell you: subsidizing thugs only gets you more thuggery. But no, Germany insists on finding out the hard way. Former German ambassador and family kidnapped in Yemen.
A former German government minister, his wife and three children were kidnapped in Yemen on Wednesday, local officials said, and one of their captors said their lives would be at risk if Yemen used force to free them.

"They are safe. But if force is used to free them, the hostages' lives would be put in danger," one of the kidnappers from the al-Abdullah tribe told Reuters by telephone. "We were forced to do this to focus the government's attention to our cause," he said.

Last week, Yemeni tribesmen seized two Austrians. A month ago, another group of tribesmen captured two Swiss tourists. Both kidnappings were aimed at pressuring the government to free jailed relatives and all tourists were released unharmed.

Chrobog, 65, was Germany's ambassador to the United States from 1995 to 2001. In 2003, he was the top diplomat dealing with Europeans abducted in the Sahara desert and was able to secure the release of 14 hostages, including nine Germans.
A ransom was paid in that case, of course.

And fallout from the Osthoff saga continues: looks like the baddies did indeed get more than Hamadi. Tigerhawk reports that "the Germans are particularly angry [about Osthoff's plans to return to Iraq] since they seem to have paid good money to secure her return."
"A self-willed woman!" exploded Hans-Ulrich Klose, the deputy leader of the Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee. "Incomprehensible," agreed Ruprecht Polenz, the committee chairman. "In the event of a second kidnapping one would have to discuss who should foot the bill."
How about: NO ONE. A Tigerhawk commenter wisely notes: "That's the thing about extortion, the bill tends to keep coming due. The German government should have asked itself this question before it paid up the first time."

It makes you wonder what percentage of the German federal budget is allocated to pay ransoms. Or does that fall under defense spending?

UPDATE: Osthoff told that kidnappers were Zarqawi's thugs; denies intentions to return to Iraq.

UPDATE II: Osthoff's veiled interview with ZDF "incoherent."
Even the heavily edited version (ZDF spokesman: "We wanted to protect Osthoff from herself.") of the original 15-minute interview was barely comprehensible. Questions were left unanswered and at times Osthoff rambled off into non-sequiturs about how badly she had been treated by her landlord back in Germany. When asked how the kidnapping had been carried out, she was evasive, simply responding: "I think these details are not interesting. That doesn't interest anyone. Generally kidnappings are carried out quite violently. People watch a lot of television and realize perhaps that you don't let yourself get abducted voluntarily."
What an odd thing to say.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Bavaria Shuts Down Al-Masri's Mosque

Freistaat Bayern, the German equivalent of Texas, has refreshingly little patience with jihadi plots and their tiresome taqqiya. Predictably, the joint was known as the Multi-Kultur Haus.
The state government of Bavaria said Wednesday it was shutting down the Multi-Kultur-Haus association in the southern town of Neu-Ulm after it seized material urging Muslims to carry out suicide attacks in Iraq.

Khaled al-Masri, a Kuwait-born German citizen who is suing the CIA for allegedly spiriting him to Afghanistan for interrogation, has said he visited the center several times before he was snatched.
More precisely, this "German man" was born in Kuwait to Lebanese parents, emigrating to Germany at age 22 in 1985.
Al-Masri said he was taken while trying to enter Macedonia on New Year's Eve 2003 ["on holiday"] and flown to Afghanistan, where he was subjected to "torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment" during five months in captivity, according to a lawsuit filed [by the ACLU] in a Virginia federal court.

He was flown to Albania in late May 2004 and put on a plane back to Germany, he has said. Al-Masri has said his captors told him he was seized in a case of mistaken identity.

His lawyer, however, has suggested that al-Masri was abducted because of his links to the Islamic association, which provided meetings, prayer rooms and other services for local Muslims.

"In all interrogations, in Macedonia and Afghanistan, Khaled al-Masri was asked only about the Multi-Kultur-Haus in Ulm, about the people he knew there," Manfred Gnjidic told Munich's Abendzeitung newspaper last month.

Al-Masri's case has stoked debate in Germany about how to prevent terrorist attacks while safeguarding civil liberties. Federal Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, for instance, is calling for tougher laws so that anyone who has trained in camps in Afghanistan can be prosecuted.

Al-Masri claims U.S. agents questioned him about associates including his friend Reda Seyam, an Egypt-born German citizen under investigation by German federal prosecutors on suspicion of supporting al-Qaida.

Security officials confiscated and searched the association's premises in Neu-Ulm Wednesday and froze its bank account. There was no mention of arrests or the results of the search.
More background from Expatica:
In a new twist to the case, Schaeuble reportedly told the interior committee of parliament that the United States had already offered al-Masri both an apology and financial compensation, on the proviso that the 42-year-old remain silent about his ordeal.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel last week said U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had admitted that Washington had blundered in detaining al-Masri.

U.S. officials swiftly denied that Rice had made any such statement.
The punchline of the secret CIA prisons "scandal" is that Europe's failure to keep its own house in order is exactly why the US is forced to engage in such tactics in the first place. Bavaria's move is a good start.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Osthoff/Hamadi Wrapup

Susanne Osthoff, a German revert, and her Iraqi translator, cavorting with her new friends. To us deniers of truth,* those look like masks, rifles, an RPG, and a ransom demand -- but Suzy says they're actually costumes, puppy dogs, a big candycane, and a polite request for humanitarian aid.

I beat this issue to death to illustrate a key point. By permitting their citizens to travel to the location of an insurgency against Americans and Brits, European countries are already on thin ice. Europeans who go to Iraq fall into two groups: jihadis taking part in hostilities, and fellow travelers who get themselves kidnapped and ransomed.

Whether Europeans ransom hostages because they're short-sighted cowards or to deliberately assist our enemies, the effect is the same. By putting themselves in a position where they must repeatedly cough up money and prisoners -- since they demonstrably lack the will to refuse -- European governments are helping the enemy by their deeds, regardless of their words or intentions.

With that, here are two final tidbits on the Osthoff/Hamadi deal. For once, State is pissed.

I. Speaking from Cairo, Osthoff declared her intention to return and continue her work in Iraq.
Osthoff said she was well-treated by her kidnappers, especially after she discussed with them the fact that Germany is not part of the war coalition.
II. Debka has interesting background on the terrorist-for-hostage trade:
Ernst Uhrlau, Angela Merkel’s new head of the BND, Germany’s foreign intelligence service, is revealed by DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources as the man behind Berlin’s secret decision to trade German archeologist Susanne Osthoff kidnapped in Iraq on Nov. 25 for the jailed Hizballah terrorist wanted in America, Mohammad Ali Hammadi. Uhrlau attained international prominence as broker in the Hizballah-Israel prisoner swap and the failed effort to track down the missing Israeli navigator Ron Arad.

1. It is the first time since al Qaeda’s 9/11 attacks in America that a senior European ally in America’s global war on terror has succumbed to enemy pressure and bought a hostage’s release by freeing a convicted terrorist.
. . .

4. The swap of a hostage kidnapped by Iraqi guerrillas for a Lebanese Hizballah terrorist exposes for the first time the clandestine operational links between the Hizballah and Iraqi guerrillas and fellow-terrorists. It elevates the Lebanese Shiite group’s standing in Europe to a higher league in a way detrimental to American and Israeli security interests.

. . . The new German chancellor, by promoting Uhrlau to director of the BND, shows she expects Iranian issues, the war on al Qaeda and the radicalized Middle East to stay at the center of international affairs during her five-year tenure.
In short, terrorists should keep looking for Germans to kidnap as reliable sources of revenue and the return of old comrades. They can behead a hostage every now and then to keep the spigot open, have Al-Jizz air the video, and then the German government and leftie radicals worldwide can turn around and scream at the US for the "quagmire" in Iraq. Sounds like a win-win to me.

* "Deniers of truth" is the term for Christians and Jews used repeatedly throughout The Message of the Qur'an, translated by Muhammad Asad. Asad was born Leopold Weiss, a German Jew who studied in Vienna and converted to Islam in the 1920s. Known for its particular anti-Semitism, this is the version of the Qur'an CAIR sends out for free upon request.

Monday, December 26, 2005

"German" "Hostage" Update

Toldja So alert: Freed German hostage says Iraq captors not criminals.
DUBAI (AFP) - A former German hostage who spent 24 days in the hands of unknown captors in Iraq said her kidnappers were not criminals and had demanded humanitarian aid for Sunni Arab regions.
Funny, since they got Muhammad Ali Hamadi, the Hizballah terrorist serving a life sentence for torturing, murdering, and throwing the body of an American off a plane in Beirut.
Speaking to the enemy's premier propaganda organ Doha-based satellite channel Al-Jazeera, Susanne Osthoff said her captors told her not to be afraid as her kidnapping was "politically motivated."

"Do not be afraid. We do not harm women or children and you are a Muslim," she quoted them as saying. "I was so happy to know that I had not fallen into the hands of criminals," she said.
It's professional courtesy, Frau Osthoff -- y'know, the same reason sharks don't eat lawyers.
Osthoff, a Muslim convert and fluent Arabic speaker, said her captors demanded German humanitarian aid for Iraq's Sunni Arabs and stated clearly that they did not want a ransom. "They said we don't want money... Maybe we want from Germany ... hospitals and schools in the Sunni triangle, and they would like to get money in the form of humanitarian aid," she said.

She described her captors as "poor people" and that she "cannot blame them for kidnapping her, as they cannot enter the Green Zone to kidnap Americans." She said she lived with her captors in a clean place and that they treated her "well."
"And there were teddy bears and butterflies and we sang and danced under a gum-drop rainbow."
But she repeated more than once that she "was sold," without making clear what she meant. . . . She was the first German national to be kidnapped in Iraq, and many questions remain unanswered about her ordeal.
Like, "how much money was in Hamadi's briefcase?"

Saturday, December 24, 2005

A Culturally Sensitive Christmas

Rumsfeld makes a surprise visit to Baghdad, serves Christmas dinner to US troops, says the Christmas season is a time to remember those who have been lost in combat. Great leadership. Good dude. But:
Before he spoke, Rumsfeld helped serve the soldiers a dinner of rib-eye steak, lobster, crab legs, Cornish game hens and all the seasonal fixings.
Feels like something's missing. Oh, right.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Jihad -- Everyone's Doing It!

By now, we've heard of numerous Western "reverts" to Islam -- and noticed that most of them wind up as jihadi radicals. Hasan Akbar, John Walker Lindh, John Allen Muhammad, Adam Gadahn, Ryan Anderson, Muriel Degauque, the list goes on and on.

They seem to have something else in common too: a serious case of anomie. In his 1897 book Suicide, Emile Durkheim found that industrialization in Western Europe was eroding social cohesion, resulting in higher levels of alienation and suicide. Religion played a role too: Protestants, with a weaker support structure, were more prone to suicide than Catholics. I know -- duh -- but this was groundbreaking stuff back then. And it remains a true today; Sid Vicious and Kurt Cobain are GenX's textbook cases.

Now, however, disaffected and mentally unstable young Westerners have somewhere to turn other than drugs and punk rock: Islam. For example, Mumin al-Bayda ("The White Muslim") is a 29-year-old Dutch ex-anarchist named Erik. He explains his conversion after a trip to India, where he where he made friends with a Muslim who sensed his rootlessness, flattered his ego, and made him feel part of a group:
Suddenly my Indian friend exclaims that he regarded me more a Muslim then he regarded many Muslims which where there. Everyone was surprised, when he said that according to him I lived already much like a Moslem. . . . All these talks inspired me enormously, I had been busy for years with the matter of the heart and felt myself at home in an Brotherhood like environment. But then I didn’t realized that. The realization came later. In August/November 2002 I lived and worked in Belgium. All we talked about was business, all we did was business. I felt so homeless, the way of live was so hollow, I felt so empty, so “dirty” those days. In that difficult period I made the decision to take part in the Ramadan.
Adam Gadahn ("Yahiye") tells a similar story:
I had become obsessed with demonic Heavy Metal music, something the rest of my family (as I now realize, rightfully so) was not happy with. My entire life was focused on expanding my music collection. I eschewed personal cleanliness and let my room reach an unbelievable state of disarray. My relationship with my parents became strained, although only intermittently so. I am sorry even as I write this.

Earlier this year, I began to listen to the apocalyptic ramblings of Christian radio's "prophecy experts." Their paranoid espousal of various conspiracy theories, rabid support of Israel and religious Zionism, and fiery preaching about the "Islamic Threat" held for me a strange fascination. Why? Well, I suppose it was simply the need I was feeling to fill that void I had created for myself. . . . I began to look for something else to hold onto.

I discovered that the beliefs and practices of [Islam] fit my personal theology and intellect as well as basic human logic. Islam presents God not as an anthropomorphic being but as an entity beyond human comprehension, transcendent of man, independant and undivided.
Now he's suspected of working with al-Qaeda and wanted by the FBI.

John Walker Lindh, "the American Taliban," was a quiet suburban kid who's now doing 20 years for fighting against US forces in Afghanistan.
What led a "bright and quiet" middle-class child from California to fight against his fellow Americans in a far-off country?

A neighbour quoted by the Washington Post described the Lindhs as a "Birkenstock family... very earnest, very nice, very intellectual." When John was 10, the family moved to Marin County, one of California's wealthiest counties and often caricaturised as "hot-tub haven".

In California he attended what has been described as an elite alternative high school, where students were allowed to shape their own studies.

At some point in his mid teens, John Walker is said to have stopped visiting hip hop internet sites and to have begun exploring Islamic ones instead. His parents believe his interest in Islam may have been sparked by the autobiography of Malcolm X, which he read when he was 16. That same year he told his parents he wanted to convert to Islam and he began attending a mosque.

He studied the Koran, adopted the name Sulayman and started wearing a long white robe and a turban. He also got rid of his collections of hip hop and rap CDs.

In 1998, when his parents were splitting up, John Walker asked them for money to go to Yemen. He said it was the best country to learn the "pure" dialect of Arabic used in the Koran.

After a year in Yemen, he was back in California, studying at a San Francisco mosque. But his friends there say he seemed restless and no longer felt comfortable in the US.

John Walker then told his parents he would enroll at a madrassa in the village of Bannu, in Pakistan's Northwest Frontier province. His teacher, Mufti Mohammad Iltimas said he was a model student. In his conversations with him, he said, John Walker talked about feeling alone in the US and "comfortable and at home" at the madrassa. However, not even at the madrassa did he seem to like socialising, reportedly saying it was a waste of time.
Note that these aren't just garden-variety teenage rebels who get into Marilyn Manson and black nail polish and then clean up their act and go to college. They fit the Columbine profile: they're quiet, they're loners, and they're already known to be wired a little wrong. The fruit of Islam, ripe for the picking.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

German Perfidy, Continued

Well, some good news at last.
The Lebanese killer of a U.S. Navy diver was in custody in Beirut yesterday, according to U.S. officials who decried his release from a German prison last week and pledged to bring him to the United States for trial.

Relatives of the victim -- Waldorf, Md., native Robert Dean Stethem -- said yesterday they were "devastated" to learn of the killer's release and urged the Bush administration to demand an explanation from Germany.
Damn right.

Perhaps the German government would also like to explain why we keep finding stuff like this:
ZUWAD KHALAF, Iraq — Working on a tip from an informant, soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division on Tuesday dug up more than a thousand aging rockets and missiles wrapped in plastic, some of which had been buried as recently as two weeks ago, Army officials said.

. . . the plastic around some of the rockets — of Soviet, German and French origins — appeared to be fresh and had not deteriorated as it had on some of the older munitions.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

German Perfidy, Right on Schedule


In June 1985, TWA flight 847 from Athens was hijacked by Hizballah terrorists, during which 23-year-old U.S. Navy diver Robert Dean Stethem was tortured, beaten, and trampled to death. They threw his body off the plane, like garbage. Stethem was so badly beaten that he could only be identified from fingerprints. In 1995, the USS Stethem was named after the late Robert Stethem to recognize his heroism.

Mohammad Ali Hamadi, one of the terrorists who murdered Stethem, was captured by the German government in 1987. He was carrying explosives that were the same kind used in previous attacks. Hamadi, who remains under indictment in the U.S., was tried by the Germans, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison. There was always an understanding that Hamadi would be extradited to the U.S. to face justice, if the Germans ever released him.


Fast forward. In November, a German national was kidnapped by terrorists in Iraq; as always, they threatened to kill her unless the Germans stopped cooperating with the Iraqi government. This Sunday, she was abruptly released and doing well at the German embassy in Baghdad, so we've been waiting to hear what the terrorists managed to extort from the German government this time.
The foreign ministry said on Monday that the government and the German embassy in Iraq had been involved in Osthoff's release, but declined to give details.

Security experts say Germany has paid ransoms for hostages in the past and would probably have done so for Osthoff.
And whaddya know, someone else was freed last week too.
The Stethem family learned Friday that Hamadi was released to freedom in Lebanon. Despite life without parole, Hamadi was up for parole twice and served only 16 years in prison. And unlike all other extraditions sought by the U.S. under an extradition treaty with Germany, Germany violated the extradition treaty and Hamadi's extradition was not granted. Reportedly, Germany did this for two reasons: 1) to gain the release of Susanne Osthoff from terrorists in Iraq and 2) in retribution for reported CIA terrorist camps in Europe.
In other words, the allegedly new and improved German government continues to be more scared of pissing off the jihadis than they are of pissing off the U.S. -- Germany's most reliable ally, strongest protector, and among the largest employers. Germany has been selling out the U.S. and painting themselves into a corner every day since President Bush took office. What is "just business" to Europeans is the difference between victory and defeat to the rest of us. Well, we can't control them, but we can control us -- and we've been letting them screw us this way for four years. And they'll keep doing it until we make them feel some pain.

More sickening details here and here.


One final possibility that remains open: many kidnappings of Westerners in Iraq, including this one, appear to be staged. That is, Europeans sympathetic to the terrorists' goals travel to Iraq, meet and stay with "kidnappers," and cooperate in making the video that inevitably convinces spineless European governments to surrender to the terrorists' demands. Money for explosives, comrades released, etc. Some are committed radicals, like Giuliana Sgrena; Osthoff seems to have gone native.
In an interview with a German newspaper [Osthoff's mother] said that her daughter was "more Iraqi than German." Osthoff is a trained archeologist who has been doing aid work in Iraq for several years. The 43 year old convert to Islam was married to an Arab and speaks fluent Arabic. In 2003 she made her "first humanitarian trip to Iraq."
To be clear, there is as yet no conclusive evidence that Osthoff's kidnapping was in fact a voluntary, joint effort calculated to extort aid from the German government. However, there is no evidence that it wasn't, either. If European governments keep being had, it's at our expense. And this is why good neighbors and true allies don't negotiate with terrorists, EVER.

For the conspiratorially-minded, there is also the possibility that European governments have full knowledge of these fake kidnappings, and deliberately use them as an instrument to aid the insurgency against U.S. and Iraqi troops. This is less of a stretch than it may seem, considering that the Oil-For-Food program was basically the pre-war equivalent to such belligerence.


The German government has permitted the "Butcher of Tashkent" to enter the country -- and leave again -- without prosecuting him. This was in willful violation of the EU travel ban against him, for his role in a massacre in Uzbekistan in May. Bad intel? Nooo. They made a special exception so he could receive life-saving cancer treatment in Hannover. How sweet. And, uh, oh yeah:
Berlin had initially revoked his entry, but then reconsidered its position after the leadership in Tashkent threatened to expel German armed forces from Uzbekistan.
Has Germany ever seen a jackboot it didn't stoop to lick?

Monday, December 19, 2005

The GOP's Next Ad?

A recent Republican TV commercial caused quite a stir, as those devious spinmasters used nothing but Democrats' own quotes to hammer home the point that the Dem strategy amounts to abject surrender.

Here's a video from Iraq that also succinctly illustrates the point -- perfect for grabbing the 18-35 South Park/Daily Show demographic. Gimme donkey love!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Update: German Hostage Freed

Susanne Osthoff, a German "revert" to Islam, and her Iraqi translator, have been freed in Iraq.
German archeologist Susanne Osthoff, who was kidnapped in Iraq last month, is free, Foreign Minister Steinmeier confirmed Sunday evening.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier confirmed in an evening press conference that Susanne Osthoff had been freed. Since Sunday she had been in safety at the German embassy in Baghdad, and she was in good health, he said.

The kidnappers had said they would also release her driver, he added.

Steinmeier said that in the name of the German government, he wished to thank everyone who had contributed to Osthoff's release. He took the opportunity to point out that hostages are still being held by kidnappers in Iraq.

Steinmeier refused to respond to further questions about Osthoff's release. "Not tonight," he told journalists.

Details concerning her release have not yet been made public, nor is it known whether ransom was paid.
Oh my, yes, it's a total mystery. We'll hear how much in a few days, as usual.

McCain Amendment Strengthens Terrorists

There is an argument to be made that a man tortured for six years while in custody of the enemy has too much baggage to be trusted with restructuring his own government's interrogation rules. Federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy examines the consequences:
Al Qaeda terrorists captured in battle by members of our armed forces — the American soldiers they are trying to kill — would not only be protected from rough interrogation. They may very well have to be given Miranda warnings as well as free lawyers — underwritten by the Americans they are trying to kill.

Cynically tacked on to the 2006 defense appropriations bill (and thus holding hostage provisions for our troops in wartime), McCain’s amendment was approved by a 90-9 Senate vote on October 5, and a margin of 308-122 in the House on Wednesday. The landslides might well have gone the other way if adequate thought had been given to the (presumably unintended) consequences of the measure’s terms.

. . . Remember, constitutional rights are guarantees against our government. They are not rights we would ever have extended to the whole world. The world, after all, contains enemies who would destroy our rights. The very purpose of forming government was to secure those rights from such enemies. It is impossible to separate the substance of the Fifth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment protections from the fact that those protections are designed to benefit only people who have joined the fabric of our society. Their content would be very different indeed had they been intended to serve others, especially our enemies.

. . . [The amendment] would mean, for example, that an al Qaeda terrorist in the custody of our armed forces in Afghanistan would have more rights than a nonviolent illegal alien detained in Texas after being caught trying to sneak across the border.

. . . Al Qaeda terrorists captured on overseas battlefields would have to be given Miranda warnings before they could be interrogated. Forget about water-boarding. They would actually have to be advised that they are under no obligation to speak to interrogators, that if they do speak their statements can be used against them as evidence in court, and that they are entitled to have a lawyer — paid for by the American people — present and assisting them at all times during questioning. We would also theoretically have to provide such lawyers on request — lawyers who, naturally, would counsel their terrorist clients not to tell our government anything.

. . . Al Qaeda, which shouldn’t even get Geneva Convention protections, will now be cloaked in the majesty of our Bill of Rights.
I'm sure Al-Jizz and the ICRC will be thrilled.

Friday, December 16, 2005

The New Face of Scandinavia

Fjordman has written a horrifying summary of the explosion of gang rapes in Sweden, filled with links to local press coverage. To Fjordman's regular readers, skyrocketing rapes of Swedish girls by Muslim immigrants is, depressingly, old news.

A few leading indicators: 85% of rape convicts are foreign or born to foreign parents; 82% of Swedish women are afraid to go out alone after dark; and a Swedish business student, seeing huge demand, has designed a belt to deter rapists. A young Muslim man comments on the situation:
"It is not as wrong raping a Swedish girl as raping an Arab girl," says Hamid. "The Swedish girl gets a lot of help afterwards, and she had probably fucked before, anyway. But the Arab girl will get problems with her family. For her, being raped is a source of shame."
Fjordman continues:
The number of rapes committed by Muslim immigrants in Western nations are so extremely high that it is difficult to view them only as random acts of individuals. It resembles warfare. Muhammad himself had forced sex (rape) with several of his slave girls/concubines. This is perfectly allowed, both in the sunna and in the Koran. If you postulate that many of the Muslims in Europe view themselves as a conquering army and that European women are simply war booty, it all makes perfect sense and is in full accordance with Islamic law.
Read the whole thing, if you can stomach it.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

French Propaganda Film Justifies Riots

A French-Chinese Buddhist has produced the first known computer-animated agitprop, to "send a message of tolerance."

The coverage didn't cut it, Alex Chan felt, so he decided to tell his version of the recent violence that rocked his suburb north of Paris.

But rather than a blog or video diary, he turned to a new computer game that allows players to produce a short film and post it online.

He made it with English subtitles "to correct what was being said in the media, especially in the United States, who linked what was happening, the riots, to terrorism and put the blame on the Muslim community," said Chan, a practicing Buddhist.

Produced in just a week and released Nov. 22, his short film has been hailed as a breakthrough for the obscure technique known as machinima — the use of characters, sets and scenes culled from video games to create an original film.

"There has never been a machinima with such a clear and prominent political message," said Xavier Lardy, founder of the French specialist Web site

The characters move stiffly and the English subtitles are riddled with mistakes, but the 13-minute animated "The French Democracy" is turning the 27-year-old Chan into a poster boy for a budding trend in home moviemaking.

An industrial designer with no previous filmmaking experience, he saw his film as a way to bypass traditional media and send a message of tolerance to young people, using video images they could easily relate to. But even Chan is surprised that his fledgling effort has made such a splash.

The film tells the story of three black youths who suffer from racial discrimination and end up throwing bombs at cars and buildings.

"They become angry and maybe they have no other way to express themselves, and finally this is the only way they have of getting heard. That's why I picked this title, `The French Democracy,'" Chan told The Associated Press. "It's a little ironic, in the sense that these youths, for now, have preferred using petrol bombs rather than vote ballots to make themselves heard."
A little ironic, huh. How about a little . . . barbaric? violent? illegal?
Chan, born in Paris of Chinese parents, said he has also experienced discrimination because of his Asian appearance.
Yet he expresses himself by making a computer-animated movie, rather than lobbing Molotov cocktails. Now why is that?
His film is strongly inspired by real-life events, with one character representing Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy calling for a crackdown against the rioters, while another right-wing politician advocates kicking foreigners out of France.
Right, because only eeeevil right-wingers would be so inhumane as to suggest that illegal immigrants who are also a violent scourge on society should perhaps be deported to their country of citizenship.

View the virulently anti-police "The French Democracy" here.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

German Moonbats Harass US Military

Well, all five of them, anyway. The Heidelberg Forum Against Militarism and War staged this pathetic little protest outside V Corps Headquarters yesterday. They were outnumbered by German cops about 3 to 1, so there wasn't much to see.

The smaller signs read "US Out of Iraq" and "Torture-General Sanchez resides in Heidelberg."

"Heidelberg should no longer be a war-base!" In the background, a picture of Bush, "Terrorist Nr. 1."

Hilarious. These idiots fearlessly shout that Bush is terrorist #1 and soldiers are bloodthirsty robo-killers -- directly across the street from a dozen of them packing MP5s. Their major accomplishment was to snarl rush-hour traffic, and even then they packed up their "message of truth" and went home early. So courageous!

Meanwhile, 77-year-old Iraqi voter Betty Dawisha has some choice words for the wingnuts. You go, girl!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The ICRC's Little Book

The International Committee of the Red Collaborators Cross continues their campaign to dictate US policy: Red Cross codifies war rules, targets terror crimes.
The Red Cross has codified a set of rules on warfare aimed at making it easier to prosecute people who commit acts of terror and other crimes.

The code, which took a decade to draft, sets out the "customary rules of warfare" and is particularly intended to help bring to justice those combatants who commit crimes but may not belong to the army of any state.

While virtually all states have ratified the 1949 Geneva Convention, not all have ratified treaties dealing with such matters as internal conflicts and the code is aimed at helping plug the gap, Mr O'Brien said.

The code does not have to be ratified by any country but is intended to be used as a source of law to help prosecute combatants who commit offences. It "significantly strengthens the body of law" applicable to armed conflicts and especially civil wars, Mr O'Brien said.

"(This code) not only minimises the effect of non-ratification of treaty law by some states, it also addresses the applicability of humanitarian law to non-state actors," he said.

The new Red Cross code "is one of the most important documents on humanitarian law in warfare I've seen in my lifetime," said Francoise Hampson, a member of the UN Sub-Commission on Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. "It holds the individual responsible for their acts," he said.

"Any person not bound by treaty law is going to be bound by customary law."
Which is why a code is entirely unnecessary. Customary law, like case law, is the sum total of the the practices of the majority of civilized nations, and is regarded as binding law. Yes, the result is an amorphous blob, but the blob is exactly like British and American common law, since international law has always been and remains an Anglo construct. Exactly what the rules are isn't always crystal clear, but it has the major advantage of allowing for individual consideration on a case-by-case basis, in historical context and taking into account the totality of the circumstances.

This is the polar opposite of civil law, an anal retentive, counterproductive Continental invention that insists on writing down every rule and every exception in a little book, then robotically applying them to every situation, whether the result is just or not. This is exactly what the ICRC has done to the body of customary law -- but that's okay, because the ICRC is a mere NGO and has zero authority to promulgate binding law. Customary law already binds international actors, and doesn't need the ICRC's blessing.

What is of major concern here is that the ICRC is engaging in a bald grab at global lawmaking. In the current climate, where every anti-Anglo, anti-Semitic windbag with a law degree is treated like a global authority, the ICRC's posturing will probably be taken seriously. They haven't just codified existing customary law; they are attempting to transform unratified treaties into binding customary law. Treaties are just contracts between countries, and bind only the signatories. It's true that a few treaties have so many signatories that they have become customary law, binding even the holdouts (e.g., the Geneva Conventions). But less-widely accepted treaties still only bind the signatories (e.g., Kyoto); mowing down the opposition and making them universally applicable is the ICRC's goal.

In particular, "minimizing the effect of non-ratification" is aimed squarely at forcing the US to comply with the 1977 Protocol I to Geneva Convention III. As discussed previously, it is a highly controversial treaty to which the US is not a signatory, and it emphatically does not represent established practice or constitute customary law. Protocol I would extend POW protections to terrorists, guerillas, and insurgents; one such protection is the right not to be interrogated. An inability to interrogate captured terrorists would cripple coalition efforts, strengthen the terrorists' hand, get many more good guys killed, and practically hand victory to Al Qaeda. But "minimizing the effect of non-ratification" sounds so much nicer.

The ICRC apparently thinks it's not only a signatory to Protocol I, but the authoritative arbiter of its meaning and applicability, because this is also their basis for demanding access to all U.S. detainees. The very same customary and treaty law establishes that the ICRC's only role is in neutral humanitarian visits to POWs, not taking positions on who is a POW or what constitutes international law. They are EMTs, not a law-making, law-enforcing, or law-interpreting body, and I do hope Darth Bolton takes the opportunity to remind them that they are merely the hired help.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

US to the ICRC: Get Bent

The International Committee of the Red Collaborators Cross continues to demand access to all US detainees; the US continues to give them access at Gitmo, and say no to the rest. AFP spins it as if the decision is some grievous violation of international law -- like, oh, say, beheading civilian hostages, then using the video to recruit new holy warriors.
The United States rejected a fresh call by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) for full access to terror suspects, saying some of those detained were "exceptional" and posed "unique threats" to US security.

The group is at present allowed to visit detainees held at the US military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, under an internationally recognized legal mandate to oversee the fair treatment of detainees captured in conflicts.
No, not "detainees captured in conflicts." Under Geneva Convention III, prisoners of war receive certain protections (such as ICRC visits). Adopted after WWII -- fought with massive draftee armies of powerful nation-states -- GCIII requires captured combatants to meet certain conditions to qualify for POW protections. Namely, they must (1) wear the uniform or insignia of a belligerent state, (2) openly bear arms, (3) be under the regular command and control of the enemy armed forces, and (4) conduct operations in accordance with the law of war.

Seeing as no US detainee meets any of these conditions, they are all classified as unlawful combatants. Thus it would be entirely consistent with international law if they were summarily executed. However, the US being a decent, civilized nation, strives to treat all detainees consistent with GCIII even though it's under no obligation to do so.
John Bellinger, senior legal adviser for Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, said in Geneva Thursday that United Nations and the ICRC did not have access to the full range of terror suspects held by the United States.

He declined to comment on the alleged existence of secret prisons outside the United States, but emphasized that the ICRC was carrying out visits to check on conditions of the roughly 500 foreign terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay.

When asked if the ICRC had access to everybody held in similar circumstances elsewhere, Bellinger said, "No."

The ICRC has made it clear that it was seeking to visit anyone held outside Guantanamo Bay or Iraq, invoking international rules aimed at protecting detainees in armed conflicts.
The "international rules" referred to here is the 1977 Protocol I to GCIII, a hotly disputed amendment to which the US and many others are not signatories, and which is not recognized widely enough to have the character or binding force of international customary law. The reason it's controversial and the US is not a signatory is that it would extend GCIII protections to terrorists, guerillas, mercenaries, and other unlawful combatants.

GCIII is meant to protect hapless young men drafted and thrown into a conflict they didn't ask for; terrorists and guerillas are, by definition, fiercely committed volunteers for combat whose major tactical advantage lies in barbaric, illegal conduct. The real headline here is that we extend any protections whatsoever to terrorist detainees, a measure of our abundance of decency.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Alamoudi Tied to Al-Qaeda

Abdurahman Alamoudi is the founder of the American Muslim Council, a "civil rights" group; as an advisor to the Pentagon, he hand-picked all of the military's Muslim chaplains; he's rubbed elbows with Clinton, Gore, and Bush; and the AMC often gave talks to FBI agents.

Alamoudi is a also a terrorist financier and a committed jihadi. In 2000, he famously exhorted a pro-Palestinian rally outside the White House with "We are ALL supporters of Hamas. Allahu Akhbar! . . . I am also a supporter of Hezbollah." He was a character witness for Omar Abdul Rahman, the blind Egyptian sheikh who was convicted for masterminding the 1993 WTC attacks. AMC leaders and conference speakers keep being deported and/or convicted on terrorism charges; and last year, Alamoudi himself was sentenced to 23 years in prison for, among other things, raising money for terrorist groups. There's much, much more, so the AQ connection is pretty predictable news.
Concern is mounting over the connections between a Boston Islamic group and a high-profile Muslim activist, Abdurahman Alamoudi, after a recent statement by the federal government that Mr. Alamoudi had a "close relationship" with Al Qaeda and that he raised money for Al Qaeda in America.

Alamoudi - who is serving a 23-year sentence in federal prison after having pleaded guilty in 2004 to participating in a Libyan plot to assassinate Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah - is also a founder of the Islamic Society of Boston. The society is now embroiled in a bitter legal dispute over the society's efforts to build a mosque with the aid of public subsidies [and Saudi cash].

That lawsuit, according to journalists and terrorism investigators, is part of a larger trend of litigation by Muslim groups that, they say, is having a "chilling effect" on the ability to report domestic ties to terrorism.

In July, Alamoudi was cited in a Treasury Department press release designating the Movement for Islamic Reform in Arabia, a U.K.-based Saudi oppositionist organization, led by Saad al-Faqih, as providing material support for Al Qaeda. MIRA "received approximately $1 million in funding through Abdulrahman Alamoudi," the statement said.

Alamoudi, an Eritrean-born naturalized American citizen, was arrested in 2003 on charges of having participated in a Libyan assassination plot against Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Abdullah, an allegation to which he admitted in the 2004 plea agreement with federal prosecutors. He was also stripped of his American citizenship after admitting to having obtained it fraudulently.
The rest of the article focuses on the ISB's legal maneuvers, and Islamic groups' use of vexatious lawsuits in general to silence journalists and critics.

Iran: Approves Israel's Existence . . .

. . . somewhere else (hat tip: TC).
Iran's hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad triggered new international outcry by saying the "tumour" of the state of Israel should be relocated to Europe.
Umm, I think someone already tried that whole relocation thing.
His remarks were greeted with outrage from Germany, Austria, Israel and the United States, at the forefront of an international campaign to prevent the Islamic regime from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Ahmadinejad, who in October said arch-enemy Israel
Arch-enemy? What has Israel ever done to Iran? Oh, right. Exist.
must be "wiped off the map", said that if Germany and Austria believed Jews were massacred during World War II, a state of Israel should be established on their soil.
What a flip-flopper. First it's wipe 'em off the map, now it's stick 'em in Europe. Which is it?
"You believe the Jews were oppressed, why should the Palestinian Muslims [ignoring Palestinian Christians] have to pay the price?" he asked in an interview with Iranian state television's Arabic-language satellite channel, Al-Alam.
Why should Israel have to pay the price? Jordan, Egypt, and Syria could open their doors to the Palestinians, but they don't. Islamic policy is to keep Palestinians penned in, fired up, and awash in money for jihad.
"So, Germany and Austria, come and give one, two or any number of your provinces to the Zionist regime so they can create a country there... and the problem will be solved at its root," he said.

"Why do they insist on imposing themselves on other powers and creating a tumour so there is always tension and conflict?"
And so on. It would be almost comical if this was just some toothless Mo Six-Pack venting his spleen. But this is the president of a sovereign nation that openly funds Hizb'allah and will possess nuclear weapons any day now.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan [a Muslim] also issued a reaction Thursday expressing shock at Ahmadinejad's remarks.
Now that's a howler. Just this week, the UN Security Council refused to condemn Monday's suicide bombing in Netanya. Which is entirely predictable, seeing as
at least since 1967, when the Six-Day War changed Israel's image from victim to victor, the UN has been consistently anti-Israel. About a quarter of all the rebukes issued by the UN Human Rights Commission are aimed at Israel, while dictatorial countries such as [Islamic] Iran are rarely criticized and countries such as [Islamic] Libya are even invited to chair the body.
Well, back to the mad mullahs.
Ahmadinejad also proposed "a referendum in Palestine for all the original Palestinians" to decide on the future of what is now Israel, the Gaza Strip and West Bank.
Great idea. I think Israel should hold a referendum on the future of Iran. He might also want to try this snout-counting concept the next time Iran holds "elections."
But he said "the best solution is resistance so that the enemies of the Palestinians accept the reality and the right of the Palestinian people to have land."
Ah yes, always the "but," followed by ululating cries for Jihad in the Way of Allah.
He was speaking in the Muslim holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia where he was attending a summit of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

The UN-Jihad Alliance

Getta loadda this. In a world where Muslim zealots carry out honor killings, gang rapes, beheadings, kidnappings, and suicide bombings multiple times daily, the OIC-dominated UN claims the the United States is eroding the ban on torture.
The U.N. human rights chief warned on Wednesday that the global ban on torture is becoming a casualty of the "war on terror," singling out reported U.S. practices of sending terrorist suspects to other countries and holding prisoners in secret detention.
Where they may go without halal meals and a personal masseuse. Oh, horror. Luckily, The Man was on hand to put things in proper perspective.
Louise Arbour's comments sparked an immediate rebuke from U.S. Ambassador John Bolton, who said it was "inappropriate and illegitimate for an international civil servant to second-guess the conduct that we're engaged in in the war on terror, with nothing more as evidence than what she reads in the newspapers."
Meanwhile, Arbour sticks up for the bloodthirsty jihadis in Denmark. Earlier this year, a Danish newspaper performed an experiment to fathom the extent to which Muslim threats suppress free speech. The contest called for artists to submit illustrations of the Prophet Muhammad, an offense punishable by death in much of the Islamic world. In September, the paper published the 12 winning drawings (here's one), producing the predictable gush of death threats; many of the artists have gone into hiding and the paper has hired armed guards.
The episode concerning twelve Danish cartoonists who were hired to draw caricatures of the prophet Mohammed for the daily Jyllands-Posten continues to cause unrest in the Muslim world. Today 56 Islamic countries [the OIC] are holding a top meeting in Mecca in Saudi Arabia, and on the agenda is a discussion of a united front against Denmark. Also the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour has involved herself in the discussion. She has written a letter to the 56 Muslim countries expressing her apologises for the lack of respect for others religion that the episode has caused. She has also asked the UN's racism experts to look at the case.
Weezie's "racism experts" will scrutinize the artists and editors -- not the head-choppers threatening them. This is the UN's top human rights official. I'd say the Jyllands-Posten has their answer.

To top it all off, last week the UN held their annual "International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People," wherein Kofi Annan sat before a prominent display with the Palestinian flag on one side, the UN flag on the other, and a large map of "Palestine" on which the UN member state of Israel did not appear.

This doesn't add up to appeasement or capitulation; this is a full-blown collaborative alliance. One-third of the UN's members are Muslim states -- and it shows. Say it's a religion of peace or die.

UPDATE: Annan Rushes to Weezie's Defense.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan strongly defended the Canadian United Nations human rights chief Louise Arbour on Thursday against criticism she had no business second-guessing U.S. practices in pursuing terrorists.

In a rare rebuke of a UN envoy, Annan plans to take up the issue as soon as possible with U.S. Ambassador John Bolton. The secretary general, in fact, echoed Arbour's argument that torture must never be used to fight terrorism.

The secretary general has absolutely no disagreement with the statement made by the high commissioner...and I think I would reiterate that he has absolute full confidence in Ms. Arbour," Dujarric added.

Arbour said she chose the theme of "terrorists and torturers" to mark Saturday's annual Human Rights Day commemoration of the UN's adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 because of concerns the absolute ban on torture, once considered unassailable, is under attack.
Oh, spare me the righteous posturing. It doesn't take any courage to point an accusing finger at the U.S. (and Israel), because it's well-known they don't run around beheading apostates. There's a reason these sanctimonious tranzis don't criticize the OIC, and it's not because of their snow-white human rights record.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday cruel and degrading interrogation methods are off limits for all U.S. personnel at home and abroad. But she gave no examples of banned practices, did not define the meaning of cruelty or degradation, did not say if the rules would apply to private contractors or foreign interrogators and made no mention of whether exceptions would be allowed.
Because all the international law in the world does not require belligerents to reveal sources, means, and methods.
Arbour called on the United States and other countries to state clearly and in detail what practices they accept and don't accept in the interrogation of suspects and whether they operate secret detention centres at home or abroad.

She urged U.S. authorities to grant all detainees the right to legal counsel of their choice, "access without impediments or restraints to national courts" and international scrutiny of U.S. facilities including access to detainees.
This goes far, far, beyond what even Protocol I requires. She's asking us to treat terrorists captured on the battlefield as we would a US citizen caught stealing hubcaps. Besides, recent Supreme Court decisions have given Gitmo detainees access to lawyers and federal courts. Is she just gutless and incompetent, or actively agitating for the enemy? It's so hard to tell.

Monday, December 05, 2005

MSM Prints Something Relevant, Uses "I" Word

French study finds rise in Islamic extremism, from the L.A. Times and The Boston Globe (registration required).
PARIS -- Employees set up clandestine prayer areas on the grounds of the Euro Disney resort. Workers for a cargo company at Charles de Gaulle airport praise the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. A Brinks technician is charged with pulling off a million-dollar heist for a Moroccan terrorist group allegedly led by his brother. Female converts to Islam operate a day care center that authorities eventually shut down because of its religious radicalism.

As France grapples with the rise of Islamic extremism abroad and at home, these are snapshots of what might be an emerging trend: radical Islam in the private sector.

The line between legitimate religious expression and extremist subversion can be blurry. But a recent study by a think tank here paints a picture of rising fundamentalism in the workplace, ranging from proselytizing to pressure tactics to criminal activities.

In companies such as supermarket chains in immigrant-heavy areas, for instance, militant recruiters cause workplace tensions by imposing fundamentalist ideas on co-workers and pressuring managers to boycott certain products, the study says.

On a more sinister level, the study asserts that Islamic networks are trying to establish a presence in companies involved in sectors such as security, cargo, armored cars, courier services and transportation. Once they gain a foothold, operatives raise funds for militants via theft, embezzlement and robbery, the study says.

"Parallel to these sect-like risks, the spread of criminal practices has been detected in the heart of companies [with] two goals: crime using Islam as a pretext; and in addition, local financing of terrorism," concludes the study by the Center for Intelligence Research in Paris.

The report was issued before the riots last month that spread arson and violence nationwide and focused attention on France's immigrant neighborhoods, which are predominantly Muslim. Although intelligence officials detected only a few cases of extremists inciting unrest, authorities worry that the tense urban climate strengthens the hand of hard-core Islamic networks.

French antiterror officials agree with some of the findings of the study of the private sector, although they say parts of the report exaggerate or simplify a complex issue. In any case, the concern is justified in a wider context, officials say: Extremism is rising in France, home of Europe's largest Muslim community, and intertwining with a foreign threat.

Recent arrests reveal that France has been targeted by an alliance teaming Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, with an Algerian-dominated network, said a senior French law enforcement official, who asked to remain anonymous for security reasons. Zarqawi operatives in Lebanon taught bomb-making to accused militants from the network who were arrested here, including French converts, the official said.

That underscores a development on the home front: a "significant increase" in converts, including women, said a French intelligence official who also asked not to be identified.

"The focus on the private sector is new because law enforcement does not work on it much -- they have other concerns," Denece said. ''But also, company executives have not wanted to talk about this sensitive subject. Some were concerned about being called racists."

. . . There are a few clear-cut examples of alleged infiltration of companies. Last year, police investigated a heist at the Brinks Co. that allegedly was engineered by an operative of a Moroccan terror network that has been implicated in the 2004 Madrid train bombings.

Hassan Baouchi, who was 23 at the time, worked as a technician stocking automated teller machines; his brother, Mustafa, was a veteran of two stints in Al Qaeda's Afghan camps and an alleged leader of the network. In March 2004, Hassan Baouchi claimed that stick-up men had waylaid him during his rounds north of the capital and stole about $1.2 million. He awaits trial on charges of faking the robbery in cahoots with a gang of known jihadis. About $40,000 later turned up on a fugitive captured in Algeria.

"That's a real concrete example of terrorist financing," said the senior law enforcement official.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

No End to the Final Solution

I'd like to see all those Holocaust deniers explain this:
STUTTGART, Germany — The bodies of Holocaust victims unearthed in September at Stuttgart Army Airfield will be reburied there on Dec. 15, a local Jewish leader said.

. . . The remains were discovered Sept. 19-20 [2005] after contractors unearthed bones while excavating for a drainage project just inside the airfield’s main security gate.

The bones were in shallow graves, laid side by side in three areas close together. The bones were transported to Robert Bosch Hospital in Stuttgart, where they have remained.

The airfield is located in Echterdingen and is adjacent to the Stuttgart international airport, just south of the city. It is used by the U.S. military for transporting troops, cargo and VIPs. The Stuttgart military community mail depository is also there, as is a German police helicopter unit.

During World War II, the Echterdingen camp, a satellite of the concentration camp Natzweiler/Elsass, from November 1944 until February 1945, was used for forced labor, such as cleaning up the rubble after Allied airstrikes.
This discovery, after 60 years, shocks me. Here we are, locked in combat against genocidal maniacs once again -- and we are still finding the victims of those long defeated.

It puts things in perspective. Can't you just hear John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, and George Galloway wailing: "There would have been no forced labor camps had the Allies not been creating rubble to clean up! The lies of the imperialist Roosevelt-Churchill cabal got us into this never-ending quagmire! Troops out of Bastogne NOW!"

Yeah, me neither, because in 1945, this wasn't "a different point of view" of which we all just had to be tolerant; it was treason, and we threw their asses in prison.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Al-Qaeda Update

First, the good news: the U.S. nails AQ's #3 in Pakland.

Now, the bad news: AQ sleeper cells in Spain and The Netherlands may have been activated (not necessarily in connection to the aforementioned righteous waxing, though that would make things interesting).
One of the biggest Dutch newspapers, De Telegraaf, reports that Al Qaeda sleeper cells have been activated and instructed to attack targets in a number of countries. The call was made by the recently arrested Syrian Abu Musab al-Suri. [His] followers have been active in spreading "the message" the last couple of days. A spokesman of the Dutch anti terror coordination authority stated they will look at the information and might consider a change in terror level. Al-Suri has forwarded his message before he was arrested and called upon his followers to strike targets in The Netherlands, United Kingdom, France Italy, Germany, Denmark, Russia, Australia and Japan.
And just for fun, here's a profile of one of Al-Suri's pals, Midhat Mursi, AQ's chemical weapons guy. He's listed on RFJ too.

Frieden, Sicherheit, Stabilitaet

This was the slogan on a huge EU billboard that recently greeted my bleary eyes at Frankfurt Airport. Peace, Security, Stability. This must be what they mean:
BERLIN - The German government wants to get in touch with the gunmen in Iraq who kidnapped a 43-year-old German archaeologist and have threatened to execute her, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said on Thursday.

"We will make every effort first to make contact in order to move things forward. We will avoid endangering the health and life of the hostage," Steinmeier told reporters after a meeting of the crisis committee set up to deal with the kidnapping.

Steinmeier said the government had not yet established contact with the kidnappers. Nor has it been given any deadlines.

. . . Nick Pratt, a former CIA official now with the Marshall European Center for Security Studies in Germany, said experience from a hostage-taking in the Sahara in 2003 suggested Berlin would end up paying ransom if one was demanded.

In that case, Germany secured the release of 14 European tourists kidnapped by Algerian rebels. Diplomats and officials say Germany paid 5 million euros ($6 million) and believe the money was used to buy arms.

One German diplomat said, however, that if someone like Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, was behind the kidnapping then Osthoff‘s chances of emerging unscathed were diminished [even though she's a Muslim "revert" -- ed]. If a ransom was demanded, he predicted the government would pay up.
Paying tribute, what a peaceful, secure, stable strategy. Especially the part where they publicly bend over and grab their ankles before a demand is even made. Rantburger bigjim sums it up nicely: "It's hard to believe that the germans ever had enough BALLS to be Nazis."

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Lies, All Lies!!!

The $4 billion propaganda arm of the DNC objects to the Pentagon's efforts to discourage terrorism, achieve mission objectives, and save lives:
Titled "The Sands Are Blowing Toward a Democratic Iraq," an article written this week for publication in the Iraqi press was scornful of outsiders' pessimism about the country's future.

"Western press and frequently those self-styled 'objective' observers of Iraq are often critics of how we, the people of Iraq, are proceeding down the path in determining what is best for our nation," the article began. Quoting the Prophet Muhammad, it pleaded for unity and nonviolence.

But far from being the heartfelt opinion of an Iraqi writer, as its language implied, the article was prepared by the United States military as part of a multimillion-dollar covert campaign to plant paid propaganda in the Iraqi news media and pay friendly Iraqi journalists monthly stipends, military contractors and officials said.

Even as the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development pay contractors millions of dollars to help train journalists and promote a professional and independent Iraqi media, the Pentagon is paying millions more to the Lincoln Group for work that appears to violate fundamental principles of Western journalism.

In many cases, the material prepared by the military was given to advertising agencies for placement, and at least some of the material ran with an advertising label. But the American authorship and financing were not revealed.

Military spokesmen in Washington and Baghdad said Wednesday that they had no information on the contract. In an interview from Baghdad on Nov. 18, Lt. Col. Steven A. Boylan, a military spokesman, said the Pentagon's contract with the Lincoln Group was an attempt to "try to get stories out to publications that normally don't have access to those kind of stories."

"I think it's absolutely wrong for the government to do this," said Patrick Butler, vice president of the International Center for Journalists in Washington, which conducts ethics training for journalists from countries without a history of independent news media. "Ethically, it's indefensible."

The Lincoln Group, whose principals include some businessmen and former military officials, was hired last year after military officials concluded that the United States was failing to win over Muslim public opinion. In Iraq, the effort is seen by some American military commanders as a crucial step toward defeating the Sunni-led insurgency.

The Pentagon's first public relations contract with Lincoln was awarded in 2004 for about $5 million with the stated purpose of accurately informing the Iraqi people of American goals and gaining their support.

"I'm not surprised this goes on," said Michael Rubin, who worked in Iraq for the Coalition Provisional Authority in 2003 and 2004. "Informational operations are a part of any military campaign," he added. "Especially in an atmosphere where terrorists and insurgents - replete with oil boom cash [and ransoms paid by European governments] - do the same. We need an even playing field, but cannot fight with both hands tied behind our backs."
As the NYT well knows, propaganda is part of every war -- or anti-war -- effort. What's telling is the assumption throughout that anything emanating from the U.S. military is necessarily tainted, illegitimate, or false, as is anything inconsistent with the NYT's "quagmire" narrative. What can I say. They have Walter Duranty and Jayson Blair; we have Blackfive and Michael Yon.