Thursday, December 29, 2011
I wish to add a word of clarification. This blog is dedicated to the stories, events, and prophetic events that are happening around the world. The news stories I place here are stories that line up with the prophacies revealed in the word of God. The tittle of this blog (Reflections of a seer) is an admission of mine of the ministry that God entrusted to me some twenty odd years ago. In the Bible we have some prophets who are called seers. Not all prophets are seers, but all seers are prophets. I am not in any way claiming to be a new age mystic seer.
Seers in the bible and those so entrusted by God have dreams and visions. I have placed a number of them in this space before. Today I am giving an account of a vision that I had just yesterday. I also have several journals of visions that Father has shown me in the past which I shall also be puting here. My prayer is this most recent experience shall be a blessing to all who read it.
My spirit has been called once more to heaven. To be more precisely to my lodge that Father had built for me a few years ago. Yet I do not take comfort in being here today. I walked across the clearing and through the front door and into the parlor of my lodge. I entered my study and took the all too familiar bag off the hook on the wall. I went into the dining room and found three loaves of bread and a skin of wine.
The wine skin had a little note with it that said it was the first batch of wine that had been made with the grapes from my own small vineyard and it was signed Joseph. This brought a smile to my face for Joseph is an acquaintance of mine who happens to be the best winemaker in heaven.
Yet my spirit is filled with a sense of purpose and I know that I am about to begin the most important journey I have ever undertaken here. The last few years have been a time of great joy, revelation, and pain. Today is where it all begins to move forward and I feel my Father’s call to me. Taking the three loves and the wineskin I placed them in my bag.
I retraced my steps and made my way out the front door of my lodge and having crossed the clearing surrounding my place I soon found myself in the forest of God. I do not know where I am going I just know I am being led by the Spirit of God. Stopping for a moment I took a deep breath of that wonderful almost perfumed air of heaven. Above my head like giant sentinels the branches of these great trees of glory towered far above my head.
It does feel so good to be here but feeling pressed in my spirit I began walking once more. Never in my life have I felt so compelled to do anything than I feel at this present time. I have come a great distance in fact I find myself deep in a part of the forest I have never been before. In the distance I can see a small clearing and I immediately began to make my way towards it.
As I entered the clearing I saw a beautiful fountain in the center of the clearing. Sitting on the edge of the fountain was a small man. He was staring at me and stood to his feet as I neared him.
He had very large intent eyes, a closely cropped beard and dark hair. His garment was simple and I could sense a great anointing in him. Motioning to me we sat down side by side on the fountain He took both my hands in his and a powerful anointing surged all over me.
He said, “Son my name is Simeon. It was my privilege in my lifetime. to be filled with an awareness of the coming of the Lords anointed. Father revealed to me that I would not see death until I had seen with my eyes his anointed”.
Tears welled up in his eyes. I also was moved by the emotion I could feel in this simple but powerful man of God.
“Michael I was born to see and receive a revelation of the coming of the Messiah prophesied long before I was born. It was a glorious moment when I took the baby into my arms. I knew who he was and what he had been sent into the world to accomplish”.
He paused as if deep in thought. My spirit began to be filled with an intense feeling of anticipation. He began to weep silently and tears coursed freely down his cheeks. I put my hand on his shoulder in a sign of support. I could sense a tender spirit in him.
Regaining his composure he said, “Michael, you shall see the hand of the Lord move in the earth as it has never been seen before. Father is calling to himself a generation of holy witnesses who shall be orators of God. They shall receive a new awareness of the coming kingdom of God. They shall walk in the anointing and revelation of their heavenly Father.
A new day is coming such as the world has never seen before. Michael you have been living with a sense of anticipation for many years. There were times when you wondered if the Lord had passed you by. Beloved of the Father, take my life as an example. I was born to be a witness of the birth of Father’s son into the world.
You and many others have been set aside by Father to be a witness of Father’s kingdom and authority in the earth. No generation has ever lived through the terrible days that lie ahead. Yet Father is calling you to himself in this day and this hour to plant within you an awareness of his word, his power, and his authority.
You personally son are moving into the ministry you were born to. You have humbled yourself before him. I have been sent today to testify to you that the day of awareness is at hand. All shall be revealed, all shall be made clear, Father shall place his word within you and shall speak through you. You shall be one of the first of many whom Father is calling to himself in this hour”.
Simeon paused and put his hands on my shoulders. A gentle breeze was blowing through his hair and a slight smile creased his face.
“it is my joy to be sent as a servant of the Lord to be a witness and prophecy his word to you. The day has come and he has prepared your heart. This journey shall be different than any other you have been on before. Father shall place his mark upon you and open your heart to the anointing of the age yet to come.
The powers of darkness will not be able to withstand the anointing of the chosen in this hour. They will not be interested in building a name or a kingdom of their own. They shall be divine witnesses of Father’s heart and have an inner awareness of the kingdom authority that is yet to come. Kneel my son and receive the word Father has given me for you”.
I knelt before him and he placed his hand on my head.
My Father, with great joy I present your servant Michael to you. I beseech you Holy Father to hear my cry and my petition this day. Michael is beginning the next phase of his journey. He has been prepared by you for this day and hour”.
Simeon began to shake under the anointing and put both hands on my head, one on each side of my face.
“Dark and lonely places you have known. Yet a new day has come. In the days ahead it shall be the forces of darkness that shall be scattered. You have been called and chosen to prepare the world for the kingdom yet to come. Nations shall be humbled in this day by the kingdom power and authority of Father and his chosen vessels, who know his heart, shall bear witness of this and shall do exploits in his name.
At the word of the vessels of Fathers heart evil nations shall be brought low and those who humble themselves before shall receive the witness of their heavenly Father within them. My son Father is calling you to himself that he might write his word upon your heart for the hour is at hand”.
Having said this Simeon stepped back and for a long moment I on my knees and he standing a few feet from me, shared a moment of quiet understanding.
I could not get up and I fell on my face before the Lord. I began to shake and weep. I sense a new awareness in my heart and a sense of anticipation. The wind began to blow and raising myself up on my elbows and looking around Simeon was nowhere to be found.
A pillar of light to bright to look at was forming above my head. It was too bright to look upon and I fell once more face down upon the ground. I instinctively covered my face with my cloak. I could feel the pillar coming closer and closer over my head. The ground began to shake and my spirit is in some way connected to it.
The Holy Spirit began to speak to me out of the pillar.
“I am the voice of wisdom and understanding. I hold within me the full understanding of Father’s heart. I have come this day son to begin that holy preparation within you that shall bring a revelation of his heart and you shall walk in the anointing of that understanding for the rest of your days”.
Having said this, the pillar of light descended and covered me and we began to soar upwards. I know not where we are going but I am safe in his hands.
Story taken from
"Despite the efforts to disrupt the Iranian nuclear program, they have reached a point where they can assemble a bomb in a year or potentially less," said US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta in a CBS interview Tuesday, Dec. 20, marking a radical change in US administration policy, he added: "That's a red line for us and that's a red line, obviously for the Israelis. If we have to do it we will deal with it."
Debkafile notes that as recently as Dec. 2, the US defense secretary in a lecture at the Brookings Institute in Washington warned Israel that a military attack on Iran's nuclear facilities would hold back its bomb program by no more than a year or two and seriously damage the world economy. He said then that a nuclear-armed Iran would be an existential concern for Israel, but the red line for America would be the disruption of Persian Gulf oil trade.
In the CBS interview he gave on his way back from trips to Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, he drew no distinctions between America and Israel on the Iran issue.
Asked by anchor Scott Pelley if Iran could have a nuclear weapon in 2012, he answered: "It would probably be about a year before they can do it. Perhaps a little less." That would depend on their having "a hidden facility somewhere in Iran that may be enriching fuel."
Pelley then asked: If the Israelis decide to launch a military strike to prevent that weapon from being built, what sort of complications does that raise for you?
Panetta: We share the same common concern. The United States does not want Iran to develop a nuclear weapon. That's a red line for us and that's a red line, obviously, for the Israelis. If we have to do it we will deal with it.
Asked if "it" included military steps, the US defense secretary replied: There are no options off the table. A nuclear weapon in Iran is unacceptable.
He added that he has no indication yet that the Iranians have made the decision to go ahead.
Until now, debkafile's Washington sources note, the Obama administration stood firmly by sanctions, which could be made tougher, as the only course of action for putting the brakes on Iran's weapons program.
However, Panetta made no mention of sanctions in this interview – not even of the ultimate penalties of an embargo on its oil trade and blacklisting its central bank.
debkafile's intelligence sources link this radical change of posture, and its implied open door to joint US-Israeli military action, to the discussion on the Iranian nuclear issue President Barack Obama had with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak in Washington last Friday, Dec. 16. It took place at about the same time as Leon Panetta was meeting with Turkish leaders in Ankara. (The night before, the Turkish military council met urgently to review preparations for war hostilities on two fronts: Syria and Iran.)
Both meetings, say debkafile's Washington sources, addressed the reality of Iran having a nuclear bomb within months.
The administration's change of course finds expression in six areas:
1. Panetta has tossed aside the various intelligence estimates of a three-to-four year timeline for Iran to have a nuclear bomb. He now accepts that Tehran may be only months away from this target.
2. His reference to "a hidden facility somewhere in Iran that may be enriching fuel" reflects the growing conviction among Western and Middle East intelligence experts that Iran has fast-tracked its high-grade uranium enrichment in underground facilities.
3. He is no longer warning Israel against attacking Iran and appears to be taking the opposite tack: We must stop Iran crossing the shared red line to an "unacceptable" nuclear weapon. "If we have to do it we will deal with it," he said, referring to the military option.
4. It is the last moment for the US to avert the Middle East's plunge into a nuclear race.
Dec. 5, the former Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal said that after failing to persuade Israel and Iran to give up their nuclear weapons, Riyadh had no option but to develop its own; and Turkish leader have been saying to the Obama administration that if Iran has a nuclear weapon, so too will Turkey.
The administration is now facing the bleak realization that a disastrous nuclear race in this volatile region can be deflected only by military action to cut down and destroy Iran's nuclear weapons program.
5. Iran's capture of the American RQ-170 stealth drone on Dec. 4 brought home to US military and intelligence planners that a military showdown between the US and Iran is no longer avoidable and if America does not take the initiative, Iran will keep on driving it into corners until there is no other option but to hit back.
6. The sudden death of the North Korean leader Kim Jong II and the period of uncertainty facing his successor Kim Jong-un could potentially lead to Pyongyang - or factions fighting for power – stepping up its involvement in Iran's nuclear weapon and missile development programs.
Story taken from
King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia formally called for the formation of a Gulf Union on a backdrop of regional unrest and growing tensions with rival Iran.
"I ask today that we move from a phase of cooperation to a phase of union within a single entity," Abdullah said during his address at the opening session of the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council conference in Riyadh.
"You must realise that our security and stability are threatened and we need to live up to our responsibilities," said King Abdullah.
"Our summit opens in the shadow of challenges that require vigilance and a united stance," he added.
The GCC -- comprised of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and the United Arab Emirates -- was formed in 1981 as a security alliance to counter post-revolution Iran.
While Abdullah did not speak directly to the nature such a union might take, the six-member GCC has been openly discussing transforming their alliance into a unified diplomatic and military confederation for months now.
It has also been actively moving to expand its ranks. The GCC opened integration negotiations with Jordan earlier this month, and is engaged in exploratory talks with Morocco.
Last week GCC officials revealed they were making the inclusion of Egypt - the region's most populous and militarily powerful Arab country - a priority.
The GCC nations have technically been at war with Israel since 1948, raising uncomfortable questions about the future of Israel's treaties with Egypt and Jordan should those nations join.
The move also comes on the heels of the GCC flexing its muscles in the Arab League, where it moved to isolate key Iran ally Syria over the bloody crackdown of President Bashar al-Assad that has killed over 5,000 civilians.
In a clear reference to Syria, Abdullah urged his GCC allies to help their "Arab brothers so that the blood stops flowing and to guard against the risks of foreign intervention."
Analysts say isolating Assad also weakens Iran's proxy in Lebanon, the Shi'ite terror organization Hizbullah, which relies on Syria as a land-bridge to Tehran.
Earlier this year Abdullah met with Lebanon's Saudi-educated former Lebanese Prime Minister Sa'ad Hariri, whose Future Movement is closely allied with the anti-Hizbullah opposition in Beirut.
According to the analysts, the move also makes it more difficult for Iran to maintain its insurgency in Iraq as the United States begins its final withdrawal from the war-torn country.
Iraqi leaders have long complained to U.S. officials that Riyadh and Tehran are respectively backing competing Sunni and Shi'ite insurgencies in their country.
If pro-Saudi opposition groups Lebanon and Syria were to come to power they too could be targeted for recruitment into Abdullah's proposed union, as might Iraq.
Earlier this year Saudi Crown Prince Turki bin Faisal al Saud said, should Iran obtain nuclear weapons, that Riyadh would seek them as well.
Such a move would place the potentially nuclear armed Arab super-state on all of Israel's borders.
A Michigan woman filed a lawsuit Wednesday against a public high school district and a teacher who allegedly kicked the woman’s son out of class for his religious beliefs regarding homosexuality.
The lawsuit, based on an Oct. 20, 2010, incident at a high school in the Howell Public School District, alleges that teacher Johnson McDowell asked student Daniel Glowacki, then 16, to leave his economics class when the Catholic teen shared that he did not support gays due to the teachings of his faith.
It was anti-bullying Spirit Day in the school district, and students were allowed to express their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth who are negatively targeted due to their sexuality.
The lawsuit reads that McDowell was wearing a purple t-shirt in honor of deceased Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi, who committed suicide in September 2010 after his college roommate filmed him having a sexual encounter with another male student.
McDowell, according to the lawsuit, told a female student to remove a belt with the image of the confederate flag on it because it signified lynchings. Glowacki then asked the teacher why he was allowed to display a gay pride rainbow flag while telling others they could not display the confederate flag.
McDowell said the two flags represented different things, and asked Glowacki if he supported gay rights. When Glowacki said his Catholic faith forbade him to do so, McDowell allegedly told him and another female student to leave the room.
McDowell was suspended for a day without pay, but was able to return to class on a settlement with the school district.
Some students, parents and fellow teachers have expressed support for McDowell's decision to ask Glowacki to leave the classroom. While some argue McDowell was violating Glowacki's religious freedom, others argue he was protecting homosexual students from further bullying. On the Facebook page "Support Jay McDowell," Christian Hendren wrote: "As a gay educator, I am so happy to see others standing up for bullying in the schools. The truth is, bullying in schools will always occur, but it is part of our jobs as educators to keep our students safe. That is what you are doing. Thank you."
In his own statement last year, McDowell defended himself, saying, "I did not suspend the student from class that day due to his religious beliefs. I suspended him for his intolerant speech (“I don’t accept gays”) and class disruption ... I believe any symbol or speech that can cause a student to sit in fear in the classroom whether or not there is an outward show of that fear is by its very nature a disruption to the educational process."
Superintendent Ron Wilson, meanwhile, said in October that all the student was doing was voicing an opinion.
“The same thing would have been done had the student been on the other side,” Wilson added. “As superintendent, it’s my responsibility to foster fair, respectful treatment of all staff and students, and the teacher didn’t do that."
The lawsuit was filed by the Thomas More Law Center on behalf of Sandra Glowacki, mother of Daniel. The mother argues that the school district and McDowell violated her son's First Amendment rights by favoring homosexuality over religious freedom.
In addition to the classroom incident, the suit alleges that the teacher went on “a public campaign” to defend his actions and to portray the student as a “homophobe.”
The lawsuit further cites a mandatory assembly that was held by the school district earlier this year where school officials addressed the issue of bullying. The school district, the suit claims, “promoted the propaganda that ‘homophobia’ was causing teenagers to commit suicide” and “supported its ‘harassment speech’ policy to end homophobia.”
The assembly also allegedly referenced the incident between McDowell and Glowacki “to support the claim that hate speech was masquerading as religious speech.”
“The School District … has created a school environment that favorably promotes the agenda of gay rights activists while creating an environment that is hostile toward and disfavors students and families that oppose homosexuality on moral and religious grounds,” the suit states.
Story Taken from
IMF chief Christine Lagarde warned Tuesday that the world economy is at a "very dangerous juncture," speaking of the potential impact on poorer nations during her first visit to Africa as head of the fund.
The International Monetary Fund managing director spoke of a crisis of confidence with high unemployment and slowing global growth.
"Currently the world economy stands at a very dangerous juncture," Lagarde told a roundtable on Africa's economic future in the Nigerian city of Lagos.
She said the IMF's revised global growth forecast expected in January looked to be lower than the previous one in September, which was four percent, already down from June's outlook.
"And what's more, there are downside risks on the horizon that are really threatening the recovery process that had started" after the 2008-09 global financial crisis, she said.
The IMF has said Europe's worsening economy and financial market turmoil meant it will revise downwards its predictions for global growth contained in its World Economic Outlook report published three months ago.
Early this month, the UN cut its 2012 world growth forecast to 2.6 percent from 3.6 percent, warning that the global economy is "teetering on the brink of a major downturn".
Lagarde said on Monday during meetings with Nigerian officials that the European debt crisis posed a risk for "all economies of the world".
The eurozone debt crisis eased slightly Tuesday with an agreement on extra funds for the IMF, strong data from Germany and a good bond sale in Spain which boosted stocks and the euro.
The IMF also said Tuesday that bailed-out Ireland was on track to complete its budget turnaround after the fund completed a fourth review.
But the broader deal on funds for the IMF -- aimed at allowing the crisis lender to come to the aid of European nations caught up in the debt crisis -- fell short of targets, with Britain again out of line with its EU neighbours.
Lagarde did not comment directly on the new pledges of funds from European nations for the IMF, nor did she respond to a question on Britain's stance on the issue.
She said during the roundtable in Lagos that European leaders "have made some very strong decisions" but added later that "it's going to boil down to implementation".
Lagarde spoke of the impact on trade and finance, among other areas, that could cause trouble across the globe, and called on wealthy nations to enact policies that would send clear positive signals to investors and consumers.
"Those problems seem a world away but they are not a world away because what we see very clearly is channels of contagion between those advanced economies and the rest of the world," she told the audience in Nigeria.
She earlier held talks with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan after meeting Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a respected former World Bank managing director who also participated in Tuesday's roundtable.
Nigeria has long been held back by corruption and mismanagement despite its vast oil wealth.
Most of its population lives on less than $2 per day and electricity blackouts occur daily, while the country's mainly Muslim north has been hit by scores of deadly attacks attributed to Islamist group Boko Haram.
The government is seeking to enact reforms, including a deeply controversial measure which would lead to an increase in petrol prices, to allow the country to invest more in its badly neglected infrastructure.
Lagarde later left Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation and largest oil producer, and travelled to neighbouring Niger, one of the world's poorest countries and heavily dependent on trade with Europe, particularly France.
On Wednesday she was due to meet President Mahamadou Issoufou at 1100 GMT and deliver a speech on economic challenges amid the global uncertainty at 1500 GMT before the National Assembly.
Lagarde is also expected to visit South Africa, the economic powerhouse of sub-Saharan Africa, in the coming weeks.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Story taken from
It has long been said that the euro was just a step towards a federal Europe. When the European currency went into crisis, as it would be assured to do so, it would force closer fiscal integration--effectively meaning closer political union.
Closer union appears to be coming true. The euro, in its old form, has fallen into crisis and the price European countries have to pay is a large loss of sovereignty. Nationalists would consider this disastrous. In reality, there are not so many nationalists in Europe these days and many countries, and their populations, consider themselves European and see little problem with further integration.
What is set to happen is that the European super state will hold the cheque book of euro member countries; or at least be able to snap it shut should any one country wish to run away with its local budget.
Money is power and once ultimate budget power is gone, political power will subsequently be drawn into the federal centre. This illuminates the character of the current crisis; it is purely political. Come what may, economic ramifications of the crisis are secondary to those of the political necessities.
Central banks and their job, of fixing interest rates, is the primary bastion of central state control over free markets. Consequently, it is not surprising that this is where the economic trouble has come to a head.
A decade of low interest rates has allowed states in the developed world to build up titanic debts. Europe, with its socialized model, has bloated to such a degree that the world demands higher interest rates to support its debt levels than most of Europe can afford to pay.
Due to these countries sharing a single currency they cannot adjust their currency through relation to cope. They cannot “print” and the ECB is bound by charter and German ire from doing so on their behalf.
They therefore need a hand-out from the better off members of the currency union, in this case Germany.
Germany will only accede to this if it, or a proxy, has control over the purse strings to make sure the wastrel of Europe won’t spend Germany into ruin as well.
The U.K. doesn’t like this one bit as it sees many problems. The U.K. doesn’t like the idea of a United States of Germany and sees that, in a federal Europe, Germany will rule. There is no real reason to loath this idea, except geopolitical pettiness, which of course politics abounds in.
The other reason is the U.K. feels Europe is gunning for the British financial sector, which accounts for 20-25% of the U.K. economy.
This is ironic, as U.K. politicians and media have been pillorying the financial sector for years. However, now like an abusive spouse, the British government is frightened of losing its rich wife. That aside, the perception is that Europe wants to strip that financial industry from London and ship it to Frankfurt and Paris; a unified euro based Europe would present a platform to do just that, leaving Britain a poor toothless semi-autonomous region. From an investors point of view the questions are many; will this political process solve the economic crisis of Europe and how should one invest accordingly?
The obvious outcome of this whole mess is stagflation. Most of Europe will be trying to get their economies back into balance through austerity, which means lowering the fat share of GDP made up by government spending. This won’t make it easy for the real economy initially, so there will be no recovery in sight for a long time.
There will undoubtedly be inflation, which will give a lift to economic activity. It still remains to be seen though if Germany will let the EU have any meaningful bout of inflation, to evaporate its mountain of debt.
It is the level of inflation that will set the clock to recovery running - 5-7% means five years of austerity, 2-3% a decade or more.
Yet the story is not over until the countries of the euro zone sign on the dotted line and perhaps have a round of referendum. Even then, as is the way of politics, a deal is a deal on until the deal is broken. Large parts of Europe may simply not be able to stomach the prospect of a decade of stagnation, so a deal may simply not hold for long.
The key indicator is inflation. If that starts to rise then the investor can be sure that the real recovery is on its way. Otherwise Europe will be in for a Japanese style lost economic generation, with a strong Euro and a moribund economy as far out as is guessable.
Ultimately the market will decide on the lead up to the spring agreement. The sovereign bond yields of Europe will ebb and flow and if the market flatly refuses to fund euro governments, whatever the politicians agree, then the Euro will break up and Europe will go back to the way it was in 1990s. If the markets will lend to Spain, Italy and Portugal at around 5% then a new era of the United States of Europe beckons.
Story taken from
The Syrian regime, which has endured nine months of civil unrest spurred by the Arab Spring as it swept across the Middle East, has armed its medium-range missile arsenal with chemical warheads.
According to a report published by the Sabah daily Sunday, Damascus armed 600 one-ton chemical warheads to use in the event of a foreign military intervention. Furthermore, President Bashar al-Assad ordered the deployment of 21 missile launchers along its border with Turkey.
Syria’s medium-range missiles that can be equipped with chemical warheads have a range of up to 1,300 kilometers and would include the southern and central provinces of Turkey.
According to the daily, the Syrian military keeps its stockpile of chemical warheads in secret facilities in and around the capital city of Damascus. In mid-November, President Assad held a special meeting with top commanders of the Syrian army and argued over how to respond to a possible military intervention by the international community.
Additionally, Russia, which stood by the Assad regime’s defiance of international pressure on Damascus, sent 3 million gas masks to the troubled country. Most of those masks will be distributed to the regime’s loyalists, the families of soldiers and Baath supporters. The distribution of the masks is set to be completed by the end of December, according to the daily.
Syria is believed to have had a chemical weapons arsenal for more than three decades. Following heavy defeats against Israel in conventional warfare, international defense sources believe that following the Yom Kippur War of 1973, Hafez al-Assad, the former general of the Syrian Air Force, decided to bolster Syria’s strategic position through the development of ballistic missiles to counter Israel’s superiority in conventional warfare.
The unchallenged superiority Israeli air forces led Syrian generals to push for other means to protect the regime. From then on, Syria has launched clandestine efforts to develop chemical warheads with ballistic missile delivery systems.
When President Obama delivered his much-anticipated speech to the Muslim world at Cairo University in June 2009, the free world trembled while the OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation) gushed with praise and begged for a meeting with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
The OIC is the largest head of state organization in the world after the United Nations (UN) itself and comprises 56 Muslim countries plus the Palestinians. It claims to be the "collective voice of the Muslim world," i.e., the ummah, and speaks on its behalf in effect as the seat of the next Islamic Caliphate. In 1990, the OIC membership adopted the "Cairo Declaration ," which officially exempted all Muslim countries from compliance with the UN Universal Declaration on Human Rights and replaced it with Islamic law (shariah).
One of the fundamental laws of Islam deals with "slander ," which is defined in shariah as saying "anything concerning a person [a Muslim] that he would dislike." At the OIC's Third Extraordinary Session, held in Mecca, Saudi Arabia in December 2005, the organization adopted a "Ten-Year Programme of Action to Meet the Challenges Facing the Muslim Ummah in the 21st Century."
A key agenda item of that meeting was "the need to counter Islamophobia" by seeking to have the UN "…adopt an international resolution to counter Islamophobia, and call upon all States to enact laws to counter it, including deterrent punishments." The word "Islamophobia" is a completely invented word, coined by the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), a Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan) front group. OIC adoption of the term reflects the close operational relationship between the OIC and the Ikhwan.
Six years later, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is due to host OIC Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu in Washington, DC in mid-December 2011 to discuss how the United States can implement the OIC agenda to criminalize criticism of Islam. Cloaked in the sanctimonious language of "Resolution 16/18," that was adopted by the UN Human Rights Council in April 2011, the WDC three-day experts meeting is billed as a working session to discuss legal mechanisms to combat religious discrimination (but the only religion the Human Rights Council has ever mentioned in any previous resolution is Islam).
The UN Human Rights Council, which includes such bastions of human rights as China, Cuba, Libya, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia, introduced Resolution 16/18 to the UN General Assembly (UNGA), where it was passed in March 2011.
The Resolution was presented to the UNGA by Pakistan (where women get the death penalty for being raped and "blasphemy" against Islam is punished by death). Ostensibly about "combating intolerance, negative stereotyping and…incitement to violence against persons based on religion or belief," the only partnership mentioned in the text is the one with the OIC. The U.S., whose official envoy to the OIC, Rashad Hussain, helped write Obama's Cairo speech, actively collaborated in the drafting of Resolution 16/18.
Now, the OIC's Ihsanoglu will come to Washington, DC, the capital of one of the only countries in the world with a Constitution that guarantees freedom of speech and a judicial system that consistently defends it, with a publicized agenda to criminalize criticism of Islam. His agenda, and, apparently that of his host, the U.S. Department of State, seek to bring the U.S. into full compliance with Islamic law on slander, as noted above.
Events in the nation's capital seemed timed to ensure Ihsanoglu a warm welcome. The Center for American Progress (CAP), a think tank aligned with the Democratic Party and Obama White House, published "Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America" in August 2011. Disturbingly specific in naming individuals associated with speaking truth about the doctrinal foundations of Islamic terrorism, the report is a blatant assault on the First Amendment and free speech in America—at least as far as Islam is concerned.
The Justice Department soon got on board the "Islamophobia" bandwagon. In the wake of the cancellation of a number of scheduled official training sessions at national security agencies by deeply knowledgeable scholars of Islamic doctrine, law, and scriptures, such as Stephen Coughlin, Steven Emerson, William Gawthrop, John Guandolo, and Robert Spencer, Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole confirmed at an 11 October 2011 press conference that the Obama administration was pulling back for review all training materials used for the law enforcement and national security communities in order to eliminate all references to Islam that Muslim Brotherhood groups have found offensive.
No doubt much encouraged by national capitulation at such a level, Salam Al-Marayati, the president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), an Islamic organization that shares the jihadist agenda and ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood, wrote an op-ed piece that was published in the Los Angeles Times on 19 October 2011. In his piece, Al-Marayati openly threatened the FBI with "collapse of a critical partnership with the Muslim American community."
Later that same day, the Justice Department convened a meeting with Muslim shariah advocates at George Washington University in WDC, chaired by its civil rights division chief, Tom Perez. Dwight C. Holton , the U.S. Attorney in Oregon who was also present, announced that, after speaking with Attorney General Eric Holder, he wanted "to be perfectly clear about this: training materials that portray Islam as a religion of violence or with a tendency towards violence are wrong, they are offensive, and they are contrary to everything that this president, this attorney general and Department of Justice stands for. They will not be tolerated."
A phobia is an irrational fear. It is not irrational to give warning of an ideology resolutely committed to eradication of free belief, expression, speech, and even thought. It is suicidal for a free society willingly to collaborate with those, like the Muslim Brotherhood and the OIC, which are determined to destroy Western civilization from within—and have told us so, repeatedly, consistently, and publicly.
Further, collaboration in such an anti-freedom campaign represents abrogation of the professional oath of office of every federal official who has sworn to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic." Silencing those who would warn of impending catastrophe only ensures victory to the enemy and loss of our most rare and precious inheritance: the American love of liberty.
Want a job with the federal government?
You may want to list your sexual orientation – preferably one of the alternative lifestyle choices – to enhance your chances.
That's after an executive order signed by President Obama makes it a goal to hire people who reflect his ideals of "diversity and inclusion."
Presidential Executive Order 13583, signed without fanfare on Main Street, has since been touted as an effort to strengthen America. It's described by the administration:
"A commitment to equal opportunity, diversity, and inclusion is critical for the federal government as an employer.
"By law, the federal government's recruitment policies should 'endeavor to achieve a work force from all segments of society.'"
How did America get to this point? Find out in "The Marketing of Evil: How Radicals, Elitists, and Pseudo-Experts Sell Us Corruption Disguised as Freedom"
One federal executive says about the order, the "United States is at its strongest when we embrace all of our talents, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity."
In a nine-page strategic plan launched by Obama's signature on this executive order, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, within the Office of Personnel Management, set a new bar for the recruiting, hiring, and retention of federal workers:
"As the nation's largest employer, the federal government has an obligation to lead by example."
It goes on to say, "In order to cultivate high performing organizations for the 21st century, the federal government must tap into the rich resources of our global community and ensure fairness and justice in the workplace."
So now the federal government apparently will be going overseas to hunt for workers who meet Obama's ideals regarding sexual orientation or gender identity.
That aligns with a just-released report that the Obama administration intends to make the United States the global sex cop, with plans to try to intervene in the workings of other nations where homosexuality is not promoted as well as plans to create special provisions for homosexuals and those with other lifestyle choices to gain special admittance to the U.S.
Among the provisions is a specific call for the U.S. government to "enhance" its work to provide services to "LGBT refugees and asylum seekers."
"Who knew when Reagan was talking about being a shining city on the hill the city would turn out to be Sodom," said Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth, an Illinois organization active in revealing the truth of homosexuality.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has chimed in on the comprehensive, government-wide strategy regarding LGBT rights, with a speech to the "global community" in honor of International Human Rights day.
"The Obama administration defends the human rights of LGBT people as part of our comprehensive human rights policy and as a priority of our foreign policy," she said.
Clinton then announced the formation of a Global Equality Fund to help advance these policies. The U.S. will start the fund with "more than $3 million," but Clinton urged all other countries to join in.
The White House website has a section devoted to informing the LGBT community of the "historic" efforts Obama has advanced for them: "The Obama administration has taken decisive actions and made historic strides to advance Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender equality and strengthen LGBT families and communities, and continues to do so."
On this White House blog, John Berry, director of the Office of Personnel Management, praises the efforts of the OPM and Obama to "institutionalize equality in the nation's largest workforce."
While recently visiting the LGBT center of Colorado, Berry said he has a strategy to "bring equality to the OPM:"
From dismantling the discriminatory policies of the past to actively encouraging lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals to work in and for our government."
In another White House blog, Hilda Solis, secretary of the Department of Labor, announces how she and Obama have redefined federal rules regarding hiring discrimination.
"In April, I issued an order to change my department's equal employment opportunity policy to add gender identity as a protected category.
"I did that because it was the right thing to do and because no one should be denied a job or a promotion because of their gender identity or how they choose to express it."
Solis also lists other achievements in her tenure as Secretary of Labor: "Last year, we announced that the Family and Medical Leave Act applies to loving families with two mothers or two fathers. If you act like a parent, do the work of a parent and raise a child like a parent, then you are a parent, as far as my agency is concerned."
The concerted efforts by Obama to advance the LGBT movement are evident throughout the federal government that promised to bring "change" to America.
Shaun Donovan, secretary of Housing and Urban Development, touted several more accomplishments at a recent "Transgender Equality" awards ceremony.
"I was proud to represent an administration that has done remarkable work to advance equality for transgender people.
"Indeed, whether it's the record number of transgender appointments President Obama has made to the federal government, the Office of Personnel Management's announcement prohibiting gender identity discrimination for federal employment, or passing a hate crimes bill that represents the first-ever federal civil rights legislation to include the words 'sexual orientation' and 'gender identity,' the Obama administration has treated the fight for equality for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community not as an issue, but as a priority."
The "change" that Obama brought with him to Washington also apparently is spreading. Just ask former Macy's employee Natalie Johnson of San Antonio.
She saw a man walking out of the fitting room reserved for women at the San Antonio, Texas, Macy's and "politely told him that he could not go back in because it was for women only."
She pointed out that Macy's has a religious nondiscrimination policy and the actions violated her beliefs.
Macy's fired her.
Matt Staver, founder of the Liberty Council, says, "Macy's has essentially opened women's dressing rooms to every man."
In a related development, a White House statement called the "Presidential Memorandum – International Initiatives to Advance the Human Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Persons" instructs federal agencies to promote "rights" of LGBT persons. .
"In order to improve protection for LGBT refugees and asylum seekers at all stages of displacement, the Departments of State and Homeland Security shall enhance their ongoing efforts to ensure that LGBT refugees and asylum seekers have equal access to protection and assistance," Obama wrote.
He explained that federal workers must be trained to help LGBT members in their desires.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
This month in the midst of so much uncertainty in our world we take time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. I think for many of us the true meaning of this event has been lost in the over commercialism that Christmas has become. Today I would take us back in time to a small village called Bethlehem to remind us one and all of not only the true meaning of a holiday, but to receive a new understanding in our hearts of the wonder that this birth was to bring to the entire world.
Thousands of years had passed since the beginning. Man whom had been created by God in his image had lost his way. Man, who was created to walk in the light and glory of his creator, had become a slave to his passions.
Entire nations were engaged in the slaughter, slavery, and conquest of each other. The word of God says that as God searched the entire world for one righteous man he could find not one.
Then in the council chambers of heaven God the Father prepared a divine response. He sent an angel to a lowly handmaiden in a glorious visitation. There he informed Mary that the power of the Holy Spirit would over shadow her and that holy one he would place in her womb was the Son of God. John the Baptist yet unborn leaped for joy in his mothers womb when Mary came to visit her cousin Elizabeth and one and all praised God for what he was about to do.
Simeon the devoted one was about to see the Savior with his eyes and die contented with the Lord’s promise to him fulfilled. Wise men from the east began a journey that would take them they knew not where. They only knew they were being led by the hand of the unseen God. For a new hope was about to be birthed in the human race as the Son prepared to make his appearance on the human stage.
Heaven bent down and kissed the earth with its best, wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and placed him in a manger. The skies filled with angels all singing in a spontaneous outpouring of love and devotion. How appropriate that it was shepherds tending their flocks that heard this joyous pronouncement. For it was a message to shepherds of every kind that a deliverer had been born who would save the world from the darkness in the human heart.
As the echoes of the angelic chorus died away, shepherds made their way to the cave to gaze in wonder at the tiny babe lying in a manger. The sense of glory and awe that filled that stable that night we can only imagine. The king of kings, the very God had by his birth become ever linked with the human race. He was the word who spoke the worlds into existence. His was the voice that communed with Abraham, and stirred the heart of the sweet singer of Israel as David played his harp.
Jesus Christ was a shower of spring rain in a world that had grown crusty and dry because of sin. His was a voice of divine glory leading mankind back to the promise of Eden and beyond. In his birth as throughout his life he reached out to the simple and common as seen in the shepherds, the wise and powerful as seen in the wise men, and the holy and devout as Simeon would demonstrate in the temple. The message of this divine birth is that we all are welcome to rejoice in the wonder that his birth represented.
Our world today is facing so many potential dangers that threaten us one and all. Yet in the midst of it all let us take the time to in our hearts visit the stable in Bethlehem, and as we behold the babe in a manger, let us everyone take hold of the hope and promise his birth released. No matter what may come let us take heart in the message of the angels. A savior has been born and by that birth the world of that day and today has never been the same.
The actions and words of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Syrian ruler Bashar Assad in the last 72 hours indicate they are poised for a regional war, including an attack on Iran, for some time between December 2011 and January 2012.
In their different ways, both have posted road signs to the fast-approaching conflict as debkafile's Middle East sources disclose:
1. Saturday, Dec. 3, Syria staged a large-scale military exercise in the eastern town of Palmyra, which was interpreted by Western and Israeli pundits as notice to its neighbors, primarily Turkey and Israel, that the uprising against the Assad regime had not fractured its sophisticated missile capabilities.
Debkafile's military sources advise attaching more credibility to the official Damascus statement of Sunday, Dec. 4: "The Syrian army has staged a live-fire drill in the eastern part of the country under war-like circumstances with the aim of testing its missile weaponry in confronting any attack."
Videotapes of the exercise, briefly carried on the Internet early Monday before they were removed by an unseen hand, support this statement. They showed a four-stage exercise, in which missile fire was a minor feature. Its focus was on the massive firing of self-propelled 120mm cannon, brigade-strength practice of 600mm and 300mm multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS), offensive movements of Syrian armored brigades backed by ground-to-ground missiles with short 150-200 kilometer ranges. They drilled tactics for repelling enemy reinforcements rushed to combat arenas.
All this added up to is an impressive Syrian demonstration of its ability to ward off an attack on Syrian soil by turning a defensive array into an offensive push for taking the battle over into the aggressor's territory, whether the Turkish or Israeli armies or a combined Arab League force backed by NATO.
2. Israel made its rejoinder to the Syrian war message 24 hours later.
Addressing a ceremony honoring the memory of for Israel's founding father David Ben-Gurion, Netanyahu recalled how 63 years ago, Ben-Gurion declared the foundation of the State of Israel in defiance of pressures from most of Western leaders and a majority of his own party. They warned him that he would trigger a combined Arab attack to destroy the fledgling state just three years after the end of World War II.
But fortunately for us, said the prime minister, Ben-Gurion stood up to the pressure and went through with his decision, otherwise Israel would not be here today.
"There are times," said Netanyahu, "when a decision may carry a heavy price, but the price for not deciding would be heavier."
"I want to believe," he said, "we will always have the courage and resolve for the right decisions to safeguard our future and security."
Although he did not mention Iran, it was not hard to infer that the prime minister was referring to a decision to exercise Israel's military option against Iran's nuclear program in the face of crushing pressure from Washington and insistent advice of certain Israeli security veterans.
Defense minister Ehud Barak, who was standing behind the prime minister's shoulder, was as tense as a coiled spring.
3. Six hours later, Netanyahu dropped a bombshell on the domestic political scene: He announced his Likud party would hold elections, including primaries, before January 31, 2012 - two years before schedule and a year before Israel's next general election. As head of one of the most stable and long-lived coalition governments ever to have ruled Israel, he is under no pressing domestic need of a demonstration of leadership at this time.
4. In the last two weeks, the Netanyahu government has been subjected to acerbic criticism on the part of one Obama administration official after another. They have presented Israel as having fallen into the hands of right-wing extremists who are engaged in a mad race to suppress the judiciary and diminish the civil rights of women and children – not to mention Palestinians.
Secretary of State of Hillary Clinton went to unimaginable lengths when she likened Israel to Iran because fringe ultraorthodox group's in a couple of suburbs in Jerusalem and Bnei Brak were fighting for gender segregation on public transport against the government and the courts.
She was clearly aiming to undermine the Netanyahu government's democratic credentials - and therefore his moral legitimacy - for going to war to halt Iran's attainment of a nuclear weapon.
5.The unusually powerful US and Russian naval buildups in the waters around Syria and Iran.
Washington sought in late November to give the impression that the George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group was anchored off Marseilles, when it was spotted in the eastern Mediterranean opposite Syria.
Moscowthen rushed to Syria's defense by airlifting 72 anti-ship Yakhont missiles (Western-coded SSN-26) to Damascus. These water-skimming weapons can hit naval targets at a distance of 300 kilometers.
After that the Bush, whose freedom to approach Syrian or Lebanese shores, had been curtailed by the new weapon reaching Syria, departed to an unknown destination, while the USS Carl Vinson strike group took up position opposite Iran.
Moscowis also playing hide and seek with its only air carrier Admiral Kuznetsov. It was announced that the vessel would set sail for the Mediterranean on Dec. 6. But on Nov. 25, it was sighted passing Malta and chugging past Cyprus four days later on its way to join the flotilla of three Russian guided missile destroyers already anchored off Syria.
Neither the United States nor Russia would have concentrated two powerful fleets in the proximity of Syria and Iran unless they were certain a military conflagration was imminent. While any of the prime movers, Washington, Moscow, Tehran, Israel or Bashar Assad, may at the last moment step back from the brink of a regional war, at the moment, there is no sign of this happening.
Story taken from
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has placed the Revolutionary Guards on a war footing amid fears that the West and Israel are about to attack their nuclear program, the London Telegraph, which has good ties with British intelligence, reported early Tuesday, Dec. 6.
Monday, debkafile reported increasing indications that the Middle East is set for war, including an attack on Iran, between mid-December 2011 and mid-January 2012.
In obedience to Khamenei's directive to take all necessary measures to protect the regime, the Guards chief Gen. Mohammed Ali Jaafari has raised the operational readiness status of the country's forces in preparation for external strikes and covert attacks.
He ordered Iran's arsenal of long-range Shahab missiles redistributed to secret sites around the country where they would be safe from enemy attack and could be used to launch retaliatory strikes; guard units scattered to preset defense lines and air force "rapid reaction units" deployed after carrying out extensive exercises for responding to an enemy air attack on nuclear and strategic military targets.
Saturday, Dec. 3, Israel's defense minister Ehud Barak, when asked about a covert war against Iran, denied it was taking place. Twenty-hours later, this clandestine war peaked in a major coup for Iran, its capture of the sophisticated US RQ-170 Sentinel stealth reconnaissance drone.
Tehran reported that, apart from slight damage, the aircraft was shot down complete with all its top-secret electronic systems in working condition.
An American military source confirmed that Iran had the RQ-170, but added there was "absolutely no indication the drone was shot down."
This leads to the conclusion that the Iranians were able to control the drone from a distance (over Afghanistan) and guide it across the border to land to Iran, say debkafile's military sources. The slight damage would then apply to the wings and may have been caused when it was brought in to land by an Iranian crew unused to handling an electronic warfare craft.
Our sources add that possession of the drone is more than just a major intelligence coup for Tehran; it has acquired an important military edge before any overt military operation has been launched. Western and Israeli war planners now have cause to fear that Iran has penetrated the heart of their most secret intelligence and electronic technological hardware for striking its nuclear infrastructure. If Tehran is capable of reaching out and guiding an American stealth drone into landing from a distance, it may also be able to control the systems of other aircraft, manned or unmanned.
This feat recalls Hizballah's surprise attack on an Israeli missile boat in the 2006 Lebanon war when its Chinese-made shore-to-ship C-802 missile was enabled by Iranian-manned coastal radar interference to override the ship's advanced electronic defense systems and so put the Israeli Navy out of action within range of the Lebanese coast.
According to an expert quoted by the Telegraph's senior military commentator Con Coughlin, the campaign of assassinations, cyber war and sabotage of recent weeks "looks like the 21st century form of war.
Not a single member of the Senate spoke out last week against a provision in the defense authorization bill that will repeal the military's ban on sodomy and bestiality if the bill becomes law.
The Senate voted 93 to 7 on Thursday evening to approve the National Defense Authorization Act, which contained a provision to repeal Article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ).
Article 125 of the UCMJ makes it illegal for anyone in the U.S. military to engage “in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal.”
Three conservative Senate Republicans – Sens. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) – joined Democratic Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont in voting “NO” on the bill.
But none of them spoke out in Senate debate against the sodomy/bestiality provision leading up to the vote. And none said they voted against the bill because of the provision.
“Dr. Coburn voted against the bill because it didn't do enough to fix the long term challenges at the Pentagon,” a Coburn spokesman told CNSNews.com on Friday.
A spokesman for Lee, meanwhile, said that the senator does not support doing away with the Article 125 law on sodomy and bestiality, but his vote was prompted by concerns over the fact that the bill allows U.S. citizens suspected of terrorism to be detained in the U.S. by the military for an indefinite period.
"I opposed the National Defense Authorization Act because it did not provide adequate constitutional protections for American citizens detained by the U. S. military,” Lee said in a statement provided to CNSNews.com.
“Honoring my oath to uphold the Constitution means more than doing what the Supreme Court allows. Senators also have the obligation to interpret our founding document and write legislation that adheres to the fundamental liberties contained therein.”
Sen. Paul did not respond to CNSNews.com by press time. Sens. Merkley, Harkin and Wyden also did not respond. Harkin’s Web site said that even though he voted no, he “supported many of the provisions of the bill.”
In fact, only one member of Congress spoke out against the provision last Thursday night – and he was in the House of Representatives, not the Senate.
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) took to the House floor to condemn the provision just as the Senate was voting.
“If the Senate language passes the House, they’ve stricken the language that prohibits bestiality in the military in their overzealous effort to try to advance same-sex marriage among our military and use it as a social experiment,” King said for the Congressional Record.
King’s remarks took note of the fact that the Senate bill also did not contain House-passed measures designed to guarantee that the federal Defense of Marriage Act would be applied to military bases – and to guarantee that military chaplains would not be forced to perform same-sex marriages in military chapels.
“The military’s job is to protect our freedom and our liberty,” he said. “They take an oath to the Constitution. They put their lives on the line, and we give them something that defies the Federal law, the Defense of Marriage Act.”
Tom McClusky, director of government relations for Family Research Council Action, told CNSNews.com that the lack of response bout the bestiality repeal was “very troubling.”
Why did no one in the Senate mention it?
I think because it’s a very difficult issue to talk about, probably,” McClusky told CNSNews.com. “However, some of these senators should also be concerned – they probably don’t want campaign challengers running ads about how ‘Sen. So-and-So voted to repeal (the policy) in the military both on sodomy and bestiality.’ ”
McClusky said some members of the Senate may have taken the practical stance of “Let the conference committee deal with that issue.”
“That’s certainly the possibility, and we’re working with members on the House side to try to reinstate Article 125 completely – certainly to fix the bestiality problem,” he said.
McClusky, meanwhile, said the repeal of the bestiality provision came about because supporters of homosexuals in the military were in such a hurry to get rid of the ban on gay sex – sodomy – that overturning the military law against bestiality was merely a side issue for them.
“It’s kind of the same thing that we saw with the effort to get rid of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – the liberals, in their rush to push a liberal social agenda, just don’t seem to care about repercussions on what might happen,” he said.
He added: “While the bestiality thing, I think, was an oversight by an incompetent Congress, it could be seen by courts as being approval of bestiality, just as it is supposed to be an approval of sodomy.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday put the Obama administration clearly on the opposite side of Christians seeking religious freedom in the debate over human sexuality, prompting praise from gay rights activists and criticism from GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry.
In remarks on Tuesday in Geneva to the United Nations, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said religious and cultural beliefs are standing in the way of homosexual human rights worldwide.
“Now, raising this issue, I know, is sensitive for many people and that the obstacles standing in the way of protecting the human rights of LGBT people rest on deeply held personal, political, cultural, and religious beliefs,” said Clinton.
Called a “landmark” speech by the homosexual community, Clinton announced that the U.S. would spend $3 million in aid and the full strength of their diplomacy to expand the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people worldwide.
Texas Gov. and GOP presidential hopeful Rick Perry, an outspoken critical of special rights for sexual orientation, was critical of the administrations comments.
“President Obama has again mistaken America’s tolerance for different lifestyles with an endorsement of those lifestyles,” Perry said in a statement. “I will not make that mistake.”
“Some suggest that gay rights and human rights are separate and distinct, but in fact they are one and the same,” Clinton said.
Clinton’s speech – delivered to an international audience – may be a response to growing restiveness in an LGBT community frustrated over the Obama administration’s reluctance to fully endorse same sex marriage in the U.S. Obama critics say the venue was chosen to lessen its political impact and not because the President does not support the gay rights agenda.
Short of fully endorsing same-sex marriage, the Obama administration has taken a number of steps to support gay rights on the international stage. It recently circulated a memo saying that the U.S. government would fight against abuse of LGBT individuals in foreign countries. Clinton’s speech appears to be evidence of that commitment.
“Now, there is still, as you all know, much more to be done to secure that commitment, that reality, and progress for all people. Today, I want to talk about the work we have left to do to protect one group of people whose human rights are still denied in too many parts of the world today,” Clinton stated.
“In many ways, they are an invisible minority. They are arrested, beaten, terrorized, even executed. Many are treated with contempt and violence by their fellow citizens while authorities empowered to protect the look the other way or, too often, even join in the abuse…I am talking about gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people, human beings born free and given bestowed equality and dignity, who have a right to claim that, which is now one of the remaining human rights challenges of our time.”
Critics of Clinton’s speech will want to know where and how the $3 million is going to be spent, especially since many of the countries that she was addressing have an outright ban on homosexuality and insist that homosexuality is a “western” problem.
For example, Saudi Arabia, a U.S. ally, forbids homosexuality and can punish with offense with flogging or in some cases, death. The Nigerian senate banned same-sex marriage and imposed a 14-year prison sentence for offenders.
"I certainly don't believe homosexuals or anyone else should be flogged or put to death for their sexual sins," Dr. Richard Land of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission told The Christian Post. "However, I don't believe homosexuals should receive special treatment over and above anyone else either. Secretary Clinton's remarks were more than likely a painless way for the Obama administration to placate to the homosexual community in the U.S."
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
According to the briefing given to a closed meeting of Jewish leaders in New York Sunday, Nov. 13, the window of opportunity for stopping Iran attaining a nuclear weapon is closing fast, debkafile's sources report. It will shut down altogether after late March 2012.
The intelligence reaching US President Barak Obama is that by April, Iran will already have five nuclear bombs or warheads and military action then would generate a dangerous level of radioactive contamination across the Gulf region, the main source of the world's energy.
Sunday, too, President Barack Obama said the sanctions against Iran had taken an "enormous bite" out of its economy. He also said that the "US is united with Russian and Chinese leaders in ensuring Iran does not develop an atomic weapon and unleash an arms race across the Middle East."
He spoke after talking to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Chinese President Hu Jintao at the Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Hawaii about the new evidence submitted by the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran was engaged in clandestine efforts to build a bomb.
He said both shared the goal of keeping a bomb out of Iran's hands.
As to sanctions, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told a news conference that sanctions against Iran had been exhausted and "now the problem should be solved though diplomatic channels."
Debkafile's analysts note that tough sanctions are pretty much off the table now. In any case, it is obvious that they failed to slow down Iran's work on a bomb as confirmed by the latest IAEA report.
The road of diplomacy, favored by Moscow, has proved worse than ineffectual. Its only result was to buy time for Tehran to carry on with its military atomic project free of international pressure.
Obama went on to say Sunday that, while his strong preference was to resolve the Iran issue diplomatically, "We are not taking any options off the table. Iran with nuclear weapons would pose a threat not only to the region but also to the United States."
This was the first time the US president had called a nuclear-armed Iran a threat to the United States. Until now, official statements limited the threat to "America's regional interests and influence."
The Jewish leaders meeting Sunday were informed that the Obama administration had intelligence data that the US and Israel have no more than a couple of months left for striking down Iran's military weapons development by force. This will not longer be viable after Iran is armed with five nuclear bombs or warheads.
Debkafile's military and intelligence sources refute the wild rumors alleging that the American CIA or Israeli Mossad was responsible for the massive explosion Saturday at a Revolutionary Guards base west of Tehran in which Iran's missile chief Brig. Hassan Moghadam was killed.
While both organizations have formidable capabilities which Iran has experienced in the past, there is no way - even with a UAV - they could have hit a single missile warhead in the middle of a Guards base at the very moment that IRGC chiefs were gathered around considering how best to improve its precision.
All the evidence garnered in the two days since the attack indicates that a single warhead blew up by accident while it was being handled, rather than by sabotage.
Story taken from
Neither the U.S. nor Israel will attack Iran’s maturing atomic weapons facilities until the benefits outweigh the costs in spite of the latest unnerving report. However, that cost-benefit line is fast approaching.
Last week the United Nation’s nuclear watchdog agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), released a sobering report about Iran’s accelerating atomic weapons program. That report sparked Israeli attack speculation such as an article in the British Daily Mail.
The Daily Mail quoted a British foreign office official as saying “We’re expecting something as early as Christmas.” The official said Israel would not wait for Western approval “if it felt Iran was truly at the point of no return.” Further, the paper speculated President Barack Obama will support the attack because he is “desperate not to lose Jewish support in next year’s presidential election.”
Such reports may sell newspapers, but Iran is not “at the point of no return.” Even though the Iranian threat is growing and our options to deny Iran atomic weapons are diminishing, the costs associated with a pre-emptive attack still outweigh the benefits.
Last week the IAEA for the first time said it believes Iran conducted secret experiments solely to develop nuclear arms. The chilling report said Iran created computer models of nuclear explosions, conducted experiments on nuclear triggers, and did research under a program called Amad that included at least 14 designs for fitting an atomic warhead on a Shahab missile which has a 1,200 mile range, enough to reach Israel.
Admittedly there are still many technical issues to overcome before Iran can miniaturize a warhead and launch it somewhere. But those issues will be overcome which leaves Israel and the U.S. with the question: What to do now?
Diplomacy, sanctions, and clandestine operations have failed to tear atomic weapons away from Iran. In 2007 then-presidential candidate Obama called for diplomatic “engagement” with Tehran “without preconditions” to solve the nuclear problem. But Obama’s diplomacy failed because Iran refused to talk.
The United Nations Security Council has imposed four rounds of sanctions on Iran to persuade the rogue to cooperate. Obama hailed the 2010 round of sanctions as a strike “at the heart” of Iran’s ability to fund its nuclear programs. But the IAEA report makes clear Iran’s “heart” is still quite healthy because the rogue effectively circumvents the sanctions.
It circumvents sanctions by relying on unscrupulous trading partners like Russia and China which coax domestic businesses to evade sanctions. Iran rewards such “cooperation.” China’s oil imports from Iran rose 49% this year according to Reuters and just last week Iran asked Russia to build more reactors for the Bushehr nuclear plant, part of a $40 billion deal which includes five new nuclear plants.
Covert operations aimed at sabotaging Iranian centrifuges with the Stuxnet worm and killing nuclear scientists haven’t worked either. The regime worked through the computer problems to install more sophisticated centrifuges for enriching uranium and the loss of the scientists hasn’t slowed weapons experiments albeit they are now more secret.
That leaves two obvious alternatives to stop Iran from becoming an atomic-armed state: regime change and military attack. Regime change like those seen in Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia appears unlikely. Iran’s post-2009 election unrest provided an opportunity for regime change but the mullahs acted quickly to brutally crush dissent, which Obama effectively ignored.
Military attack is the only alternative that hasn’t been tried. But it comes with significant consequences and as former Defense Secretary Robert Gates told the British Daily Telegraph, I think “a military attack will only buy us time and send the program deeper and more covert.” It would at best set back Iran by two or three years, Gates said.
Any Israeli attack against Iranian facilities would not be like the 1981 bombing of Iraq’s Osirak atomic reactor or the 2007 strike against a Syrian reactor, both were pinpoint raids. Yes, Israel has the means – fighters, missiles, submarines – to attack a fraction of the Iranian facilities which number in the hundreds. But even if Israeli intelligence identifies the most critical weapons facilities it would have difficulty servicing them all without significant American assistance, especially if the operation required more than a single strike.
American support is not a given, however. Obama may need the American Jewish vote for the 2012 election but he doesn’t want $300 per barrel oil which would be a likely outcome should Israel attack. That would push America’s foreign-oil dependent economy into another recession or depression, a certain re-election killer for Obama.
Therefore, if the Daily Mail’s report is accurate, and Israel is actively considering a military strike, then Israel’s leadership must decide between two bad choices: accepting a nuclear armed Iran or the consequences of a pre-emptive strike. Of course Jerusalem should defend itself if in fact it knows Iran has an atomic-tipped ballistic missile and is planning to launch it at Israel.
But this does not appear to be the case. And as strange as it might seem Israel still might choose to accept a nuclear Iran believing it will eventually collapse and is unlikely to use atomic weapons.
This issue is coming to a head because Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his cabinet may be on the verge of a decision. This week they meet to hear from Sha’ul Horev, director general of the Israel atomic energy commission, as well as representatives of the foreign ministry and intelligence community. Likely that meeting will review the threat, attack options and perhaps consider the following consequences should Israel attack.
First, an Israeli attack will draw Iran’s proxies Hamas and Hizbullah into a war with Israel. This will be like simultaneously experiencing the August 2006 rocket war with Hizbullah and another Palestinian intifada, “uprising.” Also, because America supports Israel, U.S. troops in the region will be targeted by Iranian Quds Forces.
Second, there will be Iranian-hosted terrorist attacks against Israeli and American interests. Last month the U.S. foiled a Quds Force-sponsored plot in Washington, DC to blow-up a restaurant in order to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. Likely there are more sleeper cells in the U.S. and Hizbullah is known to associate with Mexican cartels and rogues like Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez.
Third, Iran will retaliate using conventional and unconventional (chemical and biological) armed ballistic missiles. Almost two weeks ago, perhaps in preparation for both an attack and defense, Israel hosted a nationwide air raid drill, test-fired a nuclear-capable missile, and hosted air force drills that included refueling for long-range flights.
Fourth, Iran would try to stop all shipping in the Strait of Hormuz through which passes 40% of the world’s sea-borne oil. Iran has perfected guerrilla warfare in the Persian Gulf using mines, anti-ship missiles and small boat swarms.
Finaly, an attack would alienate many Iranians who are sympathetic with Western views. Popular resentment to an attack would help Iranian mullahs rally support for a more aggressive nuclear program and for striking back at Israel and its supporters.
For now the costs of a military strike against Iranian nuclear sites outweigh the benefits. That leaves us with a mixed bag of old options: sanctions, containment, deterrence (air defense shield and equipping partners) and the overthrow of the regime by domestic forces.
These options must be rigorously pursued while America and Israel prepare with other allies for a possible military attack and the day Iran inevitably steps across the cost-benefit line.