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Tue, September 29, 2015 Bethlehem Monastery Fire Was Islamist Arson: Church

A view of Bethlehem (Photo: © Wikimedia Commons)

A view of Bethlehem (Photo: © Wikimedia Commons)

A Church in Bethlehem has been torched in what local Christian leaders are calling a terrorist arson attack.

The St. Charbel Monastery was undergoing renovations when a fire broke out this weekend. There were no casualties, but the building was seriously damaged.

The Palestinian Authority stated that the fire was caused by an "electrical malfunction."  Christian leaders attacked the PA for what they say is misrepresenting the incident.

“It was an act of arson, not a fire caused by an electrical problem, an act of sectarian vandalism by radical Muslims,” said the Chancellor of the Marionite Patriarchate.

The attack is sectarian in nature,” he added. “It is anti-Christian, like many other incidents across the Middle East. Extremist groups operate in the area, including some Hamas cells. There are also some loose cannons that give vent to their ideology.”

“I condemn with all my heart the laxness of the Palestinian Authority in protecting Christian holy places it controls,” said Arab-Israeli Christian Father Gabriel Naddaf in a Facebook post. “I also hope that all the Christian leaders who demonstrated when the Church of Bread and Fishes near Tiberias was burned down will also demonstrate against this terrible act.”

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement, “I am disturbed by the damage to St. Charbel Monastery in Bethlehem, which was burned last Saturday. If we are speaking about the actions of extremists, I expect the Palestinian Authority to catch those responsible, as Israel has done to extremists who have attacked the holy sites of all.”

Get a preview of Clarion Project’s upcoming film, Faithkeepers, about the violent persecution of Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. The film features exclusive footage and testimonials of Christians, Baha’i, Yazidis, Jews, and other minority refugees, and a historical context of the persecution in the region.

Sun, September 27, 2015 Commander of Iranian Army Vows to Destroy Israel

Ataollah Salehi, speaking to the press (Screenshot: Reuters video)

Ataollah Salehi, speaking to the press (Screenshot: Reuters video)

Speaking at a parade of its armed forces where Iran showcased its long-range ballistic missiles, the head of the Iranian army vowed to destroy Israel.

“Israel only barks, no matter how much weapons are given to [it], we are going to destroy them, we will promise this task will be done,” said Ataollah Salehi, as quoted by the Fars News Agency and translated by the Washington Free Beacon.

Referring to Hamas and Hezbollah, Salehi said, “We are glad that we are in the forefront of executing the supreme leader’s order to destroy the Zionist regime,” he said. “They have been hit by those supported by us [Iran] even though they have not confronted us directly; if they confront us directly they will be destroyed.”

The parade took place in the presence of President Hassan Rouhani and many senior military commanders, according to Fars, to “send a clear message regarding the seriousness of Iran in the field of designing, developing and utilizing these missiles.”

Flaunting the current nuclear agreement between Iran and the world powers which places restrictions on Iran’s ballistic missile program for the next eight years, Salehi also said, ”Iran won’t accept restrictions on our missile program and we will not allow inspection of our military sites.”

In other news, the commander of the Iranian navy, Habibollah Sayyari, announced that the Iranian navy will have a joint drill with the Russian navy. He added that an Iranian Navy flotilla would visit Russia in coming months.

“We have recently had joint drills with Indian and Russian flotillas in our territorial waters,” he said, adding that the 36th flotilla of the Iranian navy is now patrolling in the Gulf of Aden. 

Why Iran Should Get the Bomb: Not a Typo

by David Harris

When I first saw the headline in the current issue (July/August 2012) of Foreign Affairs – "Why Iran Should Get the Bomb" – I thought there was a typo. Surely it was meant to read "Why Iran Should Get the Bomb – Not!"

But then I remembered that this bimonthly journal is not known for its typos – nor, for that matter, irony.

On the contrary, this is arguably the world's most influential and straight-shooting publication on foreign policy.

The author of this particular essay, Kenneth Waltz, is no slouch, either. He is a prominent scholar and a founder of the neorealism school in international relations theory.

So I turned to the piece, eager to see if my own longstanding concern about an Iranian bomb was perhaps misplaced.

I was dumbfounded by what I read.

Here are a few choice snippets:

"Most U.S., European, and Israeli commentators and policymakers warn that a nuclear-armed Iran would be the worst possible outcome of the current standoff. In fact, it would probably be the best possible result: the one most likely to restore stability to the Middle East."

"Another oft-touted worry is that if Iran obtains the bomb, other states in the region will follow suit, leading to a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.... Should Iran become the second Middle Eastern nuclear power since 1945, it would hardly signal the start of a landslide.... No other country in the region will have an incentive to acquire its own nuclear capability, and the current crisis will finally dissipate, leading to a Middle East that is more stable than it is today."

"Diplomacy between Iran and the major powers should continue.... But the current sanctions on Iran can be dropped: they primarily harm ordinary Iranians, with little purpose."

And then there's Waltz's closing line: "When it comes to nuclear weapons, now as ever, more may be better."

In essence, Waltz constructs his argument on two pillars.

First, he asserts the core problem in the Middle East is Israel's nuclear arsenal, which needs to be balanced by another power, in this case Iran.

And second, he believes such a balance of power inherently stabilizes the situation, thereby reducing, not increasing, the risk of conflict.

He could not be more wrong on Iran.

Iran does not fit the theoretical template, drawn from his research, that he seeks to impose on it, and the consequences of this misreading could be profound.

First, Waltz declares that Iran's leaders are rational, hence no need for concern about a nuclear bomb in their hands.


Just because Waltz deems them to be dependable actors who, he asserts, will behave like others moderated by their possession of a nuclear bomb (does that include North Korea's strongmen?), are we all now to go home and get a good night's sleep?

Is their Shiite eschatology, focused on hastening the coming of the Hidden Imam, not to be taken into account, as if there were no place for state ideology in the discussion?

Apropos, is it just possible that their vision of the "end of days" could be accelerated by a world without Israel? After all, the former Iranian president, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, famously declared "[T]he use of even one nuclear bomb inside Israel would destroy everything."

Could that kind of thinking not prompt Iranian leaders, living in a self-imposed cocoon, to conclude that the risk might be worth the reward?

Was their recruitment of young Iranian boys as would-be bomb sappers in the eight-year war with Iraq, and armed only with plastic keys to enter "heaven" and the awaiting 72 virgins, the behavior of a "rational" government?

Was the plot to blow up a Washington restaurant and kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. the thinking of a predictable regime?

Second, Waltz's confidence that there would be no "landslide" of proliferation in the Middle East if Iran goes nuclear is belied by the facts.

He totally ignores the regional context. There is no mention of the critically important Shiite-Sunni rivalry. He inexplicably fails to note the panic in neighboring Arab countries, documented in Wikileaks and elsewhere, about the prospect of an Iranian nuclear bomb.

Is it conceivable that Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and, for that matter, Turkey would sit idly by and watch neighboring Iran become a nuclear power without following suit -- and with all the attendant consequences?

The prospect of such a neighborhood hegemon sends shivers up the spines of everyone in the region, save Iran's few friends, such as Bashar al-Assad's Syria, and those already too "Finlandized" by Iran's growing assertiveness to speak up.

And, speaking of proliferation, Waltz unconvincingly dismisses the possibility of Iran passing along its nuclear technology to terrorist groups, and entirely ignores the prospect of Tehran sharing nuclear tidbits with state actors, such as Hugo Chavez's Venezuela.

Third, Israel's nuclear arsenal, believed to have been developed over 50 years ago, has not created the strategic imbalance that Waltz suggests needs recalibrating.

Indeed, that reported arsenal neither stopped Egypt and Syria from provoking war in 1967, nor launching a surprise attack against Israel in 1973.

Nor did it halt the PLO from waging its terrorism campaign.

Nor did it dissuade Hamas and Islamic Jihad from firing thousands of missiles and rockets at Israel.

Nor did it block Hezbollah from triggering a war with Israel from its redoubt in Lebanon.

Moreover, unlike Iran, Israel has never threatened another nation with extinction.

Thus, to put Israel and Iran in the same boat, as Waltz does, is utterly irresponsible.

And finally, Waltz calls for the continuation of diplomacy with Iran and the end of sanctions. Huh?

Drop the sanctions, as Waltz suggests, and we will have precisely the outcome he invites – a nuclear-armed, chest-thumping Iran, convinced, not without good reason, that it had masterfully manipulated a gullible world. At that point, what useful purpose could diplomacy serve?

As the P5+1 faces the growing prospect of failed talks with Iran, there will doubtless be more calls from the likes of Waltz for some dramatic accommodation with Tehran.

Nothing could be more dangerous for regional and global stability.

And nothing would better prove our inability to learn the lessons of history than, to borrow from the title of Barbara Tuchman's book, such a march of folly.


Peace and Love in Egypt : The Presidential Race is On

by Gadi Adelman

The three top Egyptian Presidential candidates exude the peace the Arab Spring has brought us.

Fotouh: “Israel is an enemy.”

Morsi: “Jihad is our path and death in the name of Allah is our goal”.

Moussa: “Most of our people consider it [Israel] an enemy”.

When Egypt's election commission published the final list of those who will be allowed to run in the first presidential election since the ousting of President Hosni Mubarak last year, the list ended up with 13 names out of 23 that had initially applied.Two high-profile candidates have been barred, Omar Suleiman, the former vice president and spy chief under Hosni Mubarak and Khairat al-Shater, the main nominee of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Suleiman was deemed ineligible because he had not submitted enough endorsing signatures to qualify. Shater was disqualified because he had been imprisoned and Egyptian law bans criminal convicts from running for president. After Shater was disqualified the Muslim Brotherhood nominated their backup, Mohamed Morsi, the Chairman of the Freedom and Justice Party and former member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau.

Two others of the Egyptian presidential front-runners faced off during the country's first televised presidential debate on Thursday. The hot topics were religion, Islamic law and Israel.

Amr Moussa, shown left,  faced off against Abdel Fotouh and the statements these two made and the points they agreed on give us a view to Egypt’s as well as the Middle East’s future. Moussa is the one-time Arab League chief and former foreign minister under Hosni Mubarak. Moussa is considered to be a moderate, and many experts see him as the favorite for Egyptians. If this guy is the “moderate” we need not look for a radical.

The Islamist candidate, Abdul Moneim Aboul Fotouh is a former leading figure in the Muslim Brotherhood who many fear will impose an Islamic state should he be elected. Fotouh was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood's Guidance Bureau from 1987 - 2009. In 2011 he formally quit all political work with the Muslim Brotherhood and resigned from its membership, when he decided to run for president.

Do I really need to explain what will come of Egypt after these elections? I have been writing and speaking out on this since before the previous President, Hosni Mubarak was ousted.

During the debate, both candidates agreed that the constitution should be guided by Sharia, or Islamic law. That, in and of itself, should be enough to make any one shudder who understands Sharia.

At one point Moussa asked Fotouh about religious freedom and Christianity, as reported by Egypt’s Ahram online,

“You once said in a televised interview that Muslims can convert to Christianity and vice versa... is this still your position?”

Abul-Fotouh, taken aback, waffled at first and then stressed the importance of freedom of belief and of a moderate understanding of Islam. He, however, fought back and attempted to corner Moussa and paint him as too secular.

Moussa was twice asked: “What do you mean by the general principles of Sharia?” After equivocating, the one-time Arab League chief insisted that the general principles of Islamic Sharia law, as they existed in the 1971 constitution, should be applied.

“We want to know your vision about applying Sharia law, especially as you are now backed by radical Islamist groups; and in politics nothing is for free, there must be a deal and we need to know,” Moussa shot back.

It seems like a comedy and if it weren’t true it might actually be laughable. One radical candidate accusing the other of being “now backed by radical Islamist groups”.

When it comes to Israel and the peace treaty that has been in place with Egypt since 1979 they agree wholeheartedly,

Abul-Fotouh, shown right, stated, “Israel is an enemy which is built on occupation, owns 200 nuclear warheads, doesn't respect international decisions and attacks religious symbols. The majority of Egyptians are enemies of Israel. The agreement with Israel should be revised and the sections which are against our interests should be removed immediately and only what's in our interests should stay.”

He also called Israel a “racist state” during an interview Saturday with the private Egyptian CBC satellite station; he said he had opposed the treaty since its implementation.

“I still view the peace treaty as a national security threat to Egypt, and it must be revised.”

What’s more, he said that al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden's assassination by US Special Forces was an act of “state terrorism”. Yeah, I can already see the love this guy has for the U.S.

Moussa has also been a critic of Israel both as foreign minister and Arab League chief and agreed that most Egyptians view the Jewish state as an enemy,

“We have lots of disagreements. Most of our people consider it an enemy, but the responsibility of the president is to deal with such things responsibly and not run after hot-headed slogans.”

According to Ahram online the highlight of the show was when Moussa described Iran as an Arab country, Fotouh stated,

“Our relationship with Iran is based on our own independence. I am not against a relationship with Iran provided it doesn’t proselytize the Shia faith in Egypt and likewise we shouldn’t try to spread the Sunni faith there.”

Moussa had a short answer, wrong, but short,

“I am against a war with Iran. Iran is an Arab country! And we have to listen and talk.”

Mr. Moussa, far be it for me to correct you, a former foreign minister of Egypt and Secretary General of the League of Arab States, but… Iran is not an Arab country and if you really want to tick off an Iranian, tell him he is.

The third front runner for the President of Egypt is no different from the other two when it comes to Sharia and Israel. Mohamed Morsi, left, as I mentioned earlier, was the Chairman of the Freedom and Justice Party and former member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau.

The NY Times wrote of him back in April,

Mr. Morsi has campaigned explicitly both as a more conservative Islamist and as a loyal executor of Mr. Shater’s plans.

In a speech before Cairo University students just this past Saturday night, Morsi stated such loving lines; I have to admit that I myself cannot choose between these three gems. He stated,

“The Koran is our constitution, the Prophet is our leader, jihad is our path and death in the name of Allah is our goal.”

“Today Egypt is close as never before to the triumph of Islam at all the state levels.”

“Today we can establish Sharia law because our nation will acquire well-being only with Islam and Sharia. The Muslim Brothers and the Freedom and Justice Party will be the conductors of these goals.”

The first round of Egypt’s presidential election is scheduled for May 23 and 24. The president will be elected to a four-year term.

There are a total of 13 candidates for the President of Egypt and we all know how lucky 13 is, but the 3 above are the frontrunners and more than likely one of them will emerge the victor.

But I guess we really have nothing to worry about, our administration knows what they are doing when it comes to Egypt. Let’s not forget that Obama bypassed Congress and gave them over $1.5 billion in aid of your tax dollars just this past March.

As was reported by the Washington Post on March 22,

The Obama administration has decided to resume funding for Egypt’s military and will bypass congressional requirements that U.S. officials certify the country’s progress toward democracy, according to Capitol Hill aides.

This year’s allocation of aid — more than $1.5 billion, with the bulk earmarked for the military — was withheld amid the country’s crackdown on pro-democracy groups, including several U.S.-based organizations with close ties to political parties in Washington.

Yes, we’re in good hands. What could possibly go wrong?  After all, 13 is such a lucky number.

Gadi Adelman is a speaker on terrorism, jihad, sharia and Islam. He is a contributing editor for the Family Security Matters website as well as writing for Conservative Camp, Faith for Freedom, Gold Coast Chronicle and Pronline news. He has his own weekly radio show "America Akbar" that can be heard on the Radio Jihad network.

Aftermath of a Deadly Leak

by Ryan Mauro

In early April, I wrote that the senior U.S. officials who told Mark Perry of Foreign Policy that Azerbaijan agreed to let Israeli aircraft land in its territory could have blood on their hands, since regardless of whether the leaked story was true or not, Iran would send a warning shot towards Azerbaijan.

Only days after the story was published, Azerbaijan arrested 17 Al-Qaeda operatives with links to Iran as they were about to carry out terrorist attacks. One Azeri officer was killed and three were wounded during the sweep.

Mark Perry’s article was published on March 28. On April 6, Azerbaijan announced the arrests and said that the Al-Qaeda terrorists were planning to attack police, mosques and shrines. Some had undergone two months of training in Iran and were armed there. Others were indoctrinated in Syria and still others had been trained in Pakistan and had fought NATO troops in Afghanistan. Already in February, European officials warned that Iran and Al-Qaeda were tightening their relationship in order to carry out attacks on common enemies.

Although it can’t be proven that Iran had a direct role in the Al-Qaeda plot, the timing points to it. We know that in January, Iran paid at least two terrorists $150,000 to attack the Israeli ambassador, a rabbi and a teacher at a Jewish school in Azerbaijan. The cell leader met with Iranian intelligence. In March, Azerbaijan rounded up 22 terrorists that were trained near Tehran by the Revolutionary Guards to carry out a wave of terror attacks that were to include the U.S. and Israeli embassies, among other targets. Iranian hackers struck Azeri websites after the arrests.   

There’s no proof that Iran had a direct role in this Al-Qaeda plot, but the timing is curious, and it fits into this pattern. Iran cannot convincingly deny that it knows about Al-Qaeda’s training and organizing in its country. If the regime is able to stop tens of millions of Iranians from organizing protests, it’s hard to believe that the Iranian regime is unable to detect a network of foreigners belonging to the most high-profile terrorist group in the world.

The problem with state-sponsored terrorism is that, in many cases, we won’t know for sure if/how a government is involved. When Iran and Hezbollah decided to blow up the Israeli embassy in Azerbaijan in 2008, they reached out to local militants for cover. In December, District Judge George Daniels ruled that Iran and Hezbollah contributed materially to the 9/11 attacks behind-the-scenes.

If Iran was involved in this latest terror scheme, it could be argued that it was planned before the Foreign Policy story. It’s hard to know for sure, but officials leaking stories like this need to be fired and, when necessary, prosecuted. The Iranian regime isn’t going to just shrug its shoulders. It’s going to respond, and this latest Al-Qaeda plot could very well be a part of that response.

H/T to Thomas Joscelyn at the Weekly Standard for reporting on these latest arrests.

Ryan Mauro is RadicalIslam.org's National Security analyst and a fellow with the Clarion Fund. He is the founder of WorldThreats.com and a frequent security analyst for Fox News.

Where are the Media? Yet Another Iranian Terror Plot Foiled

by Ryan Mauro

A Kuwaiti newspaper has broken the story that yet another Iranian-orchestrated, Hezbollah-implemented terrorist plot was foiled this week. A cell of three terrorist operatives was arrested in Singapore as Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak was visiting the country. They were planning on killing him in his hotel.

The ADD of the West, especially its media, is making it miss a point I made in a recent column I wrote on this website titled, Iran's Recent Terror Assault Barely News, Iran is becoming more and more aggressive as its nuclear program advances and as international pressure increases.

The full scope of what Iran has been up to is being missed because of the lightning-speed of the news cycle. Consider what happened just this month:

  • The aforementioned plot to assassinate the Israeli Defense Minister in Singapore was foiled.
  • Plots to simultaneously kill Israeli diplomats in the nation of Georgia and India were stopped.
  • An Iranian terrorist threw grenades after an accidental explosion foiled his cell’s plot to attack Israeli diplomats.
  • The West received intelligence about a joint plot by Iran and Al-Qaeda to carry out a “spectacular” attack, likely in Europe.

And before this month:

  • In January, a plot likely aimed at Israeli tourists was foiled in Thailand.
  • In November, an Iranian plot to carry out a wave of dramatic attacks against high-profile targets in Bahrain was stopped.
  • In October, the U.S. stopped an Iranian plot to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington D.C. by blowing up a restaurant he was to dine at. The plotters also discussed attacks on the Saudi and Israeli embassies in the U.S. and Argentina.

Is there any wonder why Israel is considering military action to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon?

Sun, October 11, 2015 Wave of Terror in Israel Fuelled by Islamist Supremacism

The Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif is arguably the holiest site in the world. (Photo: © Wikimedia Commons)

The Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif is arguably the holiest site in the world. (Photo: © Wikimedia Commons)

Elliot Friedland

A wave of Palestinian terrorist attacks has intensified in Israel over the past week. Four Jewish Israelis were killed last weekend and there have been hundreds of attacks since then, ranging from stone throwing, stabbing and attempted lynching to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

The Israeli army and armed civilians have killed several terrorists while they were attempting to carry out their attacks and rioters during protests which turned violent. There have also been several revenge attacks in which Israelis have taken the law into their own hands and attacked Arabs at random.

No Arabs have been killed in these attacks.

Some have blamed this latest uptick in violence on Israeli access to the Temple Mount, known to Muslims as the Haram al-Sharif, home of the Al-Aqsa mosque.

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Friday "Jews are trying to take over the Al-Aksa mosque but they will not succeed." His statements were part of a speech declaring the "Al-Aksa intifada has been revived and we intend to join."

It is commonly accepted that Jewish access to the Temple Mount enrages the Palestinian street. Palestinian leaders have been doing their utmost to encourage this rage, making incendiary speeches accusing Israel of attempting to change the 50-year status quo put in place by Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Dayan on the Mount which prohibits Jewish prayer.

This is despite the Israeli government’s repeated denials that it is planning any such change.

 “Al-Aksa is ours and so is the Church of the Holy Sepulcher” ranted Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas. “They [Jews] have no right to desecrate them with their filthy feet. We won’t allow them to do so and we will do whatever we can to defend Jerusalem.”

It is never asked why this should be the case.

Why is it that leaders such as Abbas find it so difficult to accept the presence of non-Muslims at the Temple Mount?

The answer lines in a doctrine of Islamist supremacism. Islamists believe that in any place where Muslims are dominant, especially in holy sites, no non-Muslim can have any rights or even any access if the site is considered particularly holy, as in this case.

We see this in action in Mecca and Medina, the two holiest cities in Islam, where no non-Muslims are allowed to enter. We see this also in the behavior of the Waqf, the Jordanian authority charged with guardianship of the Temple Mount, which expels any non-Muslims suspected of praying. The Waqf has also carried out extensive renovations of the site and deliberately damaged and discarded archaeological remains of the Jewish temples which once stood on the site.

This is why the terrorist who killed two Jewish Israeli citizens last week wrote on Facebook before he carried out his attack: “According to what I see, the Third Intifada has erupted. What is happening to al-Aqsa [mosque] is what is happening to our holy sites, and what is happening to the women of al-Aqsa is what is happening to our mothers and women. I don’t believe that our people will succumb to humiliation. The people will indeed rise up.”

The Temple Mount is one of the holiest sites in the world, arguably the holiest. It is holy to Christians, Muslims and Jews of all denominations, not just to the extreme Islamists who take any attempt to venture there as a personal affront.

If the world is serious about challenging Islamist extremism, they should support the rights of peoples of all faiths and none to access, pray or simply quietly contemplate at the Temple Mount unmolested.

Other holy and ancient sites such as the Vatican, the Cave of the Patriarchs, where Abraham is buried, or the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where Jesus is believed to have been crucified and buried, are open to those of all faiths who wish to access them and pray there.

Times of Israel editor David Horowitz argued that this latest round of violence “suggests that the Palestinians have a knife-wielding, even suicidal intolerance for the Jewish state’s connection to Judaism’s holiest place, and that Moshe Dayan’s historic decision in 1967 has hardened intransigence rather than encouraged the reciprocal imperative for understanding and compromise.”

Far from ameliorating the crisis, failure to address the Islamist supremacist doctrine surrounding Al-Aqsa seems likely inflame tensions further. 

Elliot Friedland is a research fellow at Clarion Project.

Wed, September 16, 2015 Getting Personal: The Ayatollah's Agitprop Video Against the US

A screenshot from the Ayatollah's agitprop video

A screenshot from the Ayatollah's agitprop video "If Any War Happens"

Meira Svirsky

As Senate Democrats continue to filibuster a vote on the Iran deal, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei released an agitprop video (see below) threatening the U.S. if it attacks the Islamic Republic. Calling America “invading” and “criminal,” the video portrays a confident Iran on the brink of world favor and economic revival.

One can only assume the Islamic Republic is gleefully watching the political machinations of the impotent U.S. Congress, which is opposed to the deal but unable to stop it. Even Tehran's jabs at U.S. President Barack Obama are fair game. Iran has seen despite its previous provocations, the president’s support for the deal is unwavering.

The video, titled If Any War Happens and released by the Ayatollah’s Twitter handle “Khamenei.ir,” begins with footage of Obama (whom the narrator calls a “U.S. official”) saying, “We can knock out their military with speed and dispatch, if we chose to …”

The rest of the minute and a half video, which apes the Islamic State’s slick and trendy style, disproves this statement by labelling it as “boasting among strangers.”

From Hezbollah’s “victory” in the 2006 war against Israel (read: Iran's war against America) to a simulation of Iranian missiles blowing up a U.S. navy aircraft carrier, Khamenei threatens that the U.S. will “emerge humiliated” from any war with the Islamic Republic.

The video shows Khamenei addressing thousands of Iranian troops marching in formation, saying “We neither welcome nor begin any war.” It then cuts immediately to Iranian missiles raining down on U.S. troops in Afghanistan and after a scene of U.S. soldiers in Iraq carrying a flag-draped coffin.

Both are seemingly a reference to the statistic released in July that at least 500 U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq were directly linked to Iran.

At the same time, Iran’s volunteer militia, the Basij, installed giant banners in Tehran, showing an hourglass depicting the destruction of Israel in 25 years. Acting on Khamenei’s recent speech that Israel will be destroyed in that amount of time, the banners depict a Jewish star (found on the Israeli flag) being slowly drowned over two-and-a-half decades by water dripping from the top half of the hourglass.

But business carries on as usual. Addressing the French parliament yesterday, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls announced Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has accepted an invitation to visit France in November. The invitation was delivered by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius when he visited Iran in July.

While French President Francois Hollande says he will meet with Rouhani about the situation in Syria because "Tehran must weigh in positively in favor of a political solution," it is clear that business deals will be a priority of the visit. Just last week, the Associated Press reported an Iranian tourism company signed an agreement with a French hotel chain, inaugurating the first of many deals to be expected after the U.N. signed off on the Iran deal.

As world acceptance breathes new life into the bankrupt Islamist regime, we can expect more bluster. But behind the threats, lies a fanatical regime that doesn’t view economic prosperity and world peace as its “happily ever after.”

As history has most recently shown us through the rise and deeds of the Islamic State, Islamist totalitarians are not bluffing.  


Meira Svirsky is the editor of ClarionProject.org

Mon, August 3, 2015 Ayatollah Khamenei Publishes Book on How to Destroy Israel

Hezbollah head Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah (left) kisses the arm of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah   Khamenei during a visit to Tehran.

Hezbollah head Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah (left) kisses the arm of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei during a visit to Tehran.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has outlined his strategy to eliminate Israel in a new book called Palestine published last week in Tehran.

The book comes in the middle of the ratification process by the U.S. Congress of the recent agreement made by the world superpowers with Iran to ostensibly curb Iran’s nuclear program and slow down its quest to make a nuclear bomb.

Amir Taheri, who broke the story, writes in the Gatestone Institute about the 416-page book:

Khamenei makes his position clear from the start: Israel has no right to exist as a state. He uses three words. One is “nabudi” which means “annihilation.” The other is "imha" which means "fading out," and, finally, there is "zaval" meaning "effacement."

In the book, Khamenei is called the “flag bearer of Jihad to liberate Jerusalem.”  He writes that rather than ascribing to anti-Semitic views, his views are based on "well-established Islamic principles." 

Khamenei lists three reasons Israel should be eliminated: First, because any lands that were once occupied by Muslims must always remain under Muslim control; second, because Israel, according to Khamenei, is a “hostile infidel” that has waged war on Muslims in the past; and third, because the Jewish state occupies Jerusalem, which Khamenei calls “Islam’s third Holy City.”

Israel also is put in a special category for annihilation by the Ayatollah for being an “ally of the American Great Satan” and thus part of America’s “evil scheme” to control “the heartland of the Ummah

Calling Israel “a cancerous tumor,” Khamenei says the elimination of Israel would mean "the West's hegemony and threats will be discredited" in the Middle East and thus, "the hegemony of Iran will be promoted."

Surprisingly, after so many pronouncements of his desire to “wipe Israel of the map” Khamenei says he is not recommending “classical wars” to destroy Israel. Rather, almost reminiscent of the Muslim Brotherhood strategy of “gradualism,” he calls for low-intensity warfare and intimidations to make life so unpleasant for the Jewish people in Israel that they simply leave the country.

The strategy involves arming the Arabs of the disputed territories of the West Bank as well as continued support of Hezbollah in Lebanon to the north from where attacks against Jews can be launched.

Admitting his intervention in Hezbollah’s war against Israel in 2006 and Hamas’ war against Israel in 2014, Khamenei shows how his strategy has already worked. "We have intervened in anti-Israel matters, and it brought victory in the 33-day war by Hezbollah against Israel in 2006 and in the 22-day war between Hamas and Israel in the Gaza Strip," he boasts.

In addition, he calls for a referendum on the subject of who should control the state of Israel. Eligible to vote would be all Palestinians and their descendants worldwide and Jews who can prove “genuine roots” in the region. Taheri estimates that, based on Khamenei’s criteria, that 8 million Palestinians would be voting against 2.2 million Jews.

In the book, Khamenei calls the Holocaust a “propaganda ploy” and questions whether or not it actually occurred.  "If there was such a thing," he pens, "we don't know why it happened and how."

The strategy closely follows Khamenei’s previously published nine-step plan to eliminate Israel which he tweeted out last summer.  

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