Tag Archive: human-rights


ISIS abducts at least 90 from Christian villages in Syria
By Jerusalem Post (Israel) February 24, 2015 12:12 pmAMMAN- Islamic State militants have abducted at least 90 people from Assyrian Christian villages in northeastern Syria, a monitor that tracks violence in Syria said on Tuesday.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the abductions took place after dawn raids in villages inhabited by the ancient Christian minority near the town of Tel Tmar, a mainly Assyrian town, in the western countryside of the city of Hasaka, a city mainly held by the Kurds.

The latest offensive coincides with a push by Syrian Kurds in northeastern Syria near the Iraqi border that began Sunday and has compounded losses for Islamic State.

The incident comes about a week after the release of a beheading video of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in the hands of IS.

A caption of the video released by Islamic State militants referred to the Coptics as “people of the cross, followers of the hostile Egyptian church.”

The victims, kidnapped in Libya, deepened Cairo’s concerns over security threats from militants thriving in the neighboring country’s chaos.

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(c) 2015 The Jerusalem Post Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info).

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Federal Officials Close Investigation Into Death of Trayvon Martin
The Justice Department announced today that the independent federal investigation found insufficient evidence to pursue federal criminal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman for the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida. Prosecutors from the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, officials from the FBI, and the Justice Department’s Community Relations Service met today with Martin’s family and their representatives to inform them of the findings of the investigation and the decision.

“The death of Trayvon Martin was a devastating tragedy. It shook an entire community, drew the attention of millions across the nation, and sparked a painful but necessary dialogue throughout the country,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “Though a comprehensive investigation found that the high standard for a federal hate crime prosecution cannot be met under the circumstances here, this young man’s premature death necessitates that we continue the dialogue and be unafraid of confronting the issues and tensions his passing brought to the surface. We, as a nation, must take concrete steps to ensure that such incidents do not occur in the future.”

Following the shooting, a team of some of the department’s most experienced civil rights prosecutors and FBI agents conducted a comprehensive, independent investigation of the events of Feb. 26, 2012. The federal investigation was opened and conducted separately from the state of Florida’s investigation of the shooting under local laws. Once the state initiated the second-degree murder prosecution, federal investigators began monitoring the state’s case and halted active investigation in order not to interfere with the state’s trial. Federal investigators provided reports of interviews and other evidence they obtained to the state’s prosecution team.

Shortly after Zimmerman’s acquittal in state court on July 13, 2013, federal investigators resumed active investigation. Federal investigators reviewed all of the material and evidence generated by the state of Florida in connection with its investigation and prosecution of Zimmerman, including witness statements, crime scene evidence, cell phone data, ballistics reports, reconstruction analysis, medical and autopsy reports, depositions, and the trial record. Federal investigators also independently conducted 75 witness interviews and obtained and reviewed the contents of relevant electronic devices. The investigation included an examination of police reports and additional evidence that was generated related to encounters Zimmerman has had with law enforcement in Florida since the state trial acquittal. In addition, federal authorities retained an independent biomechanical expert who assessed Zimmerman’s descriptions of the struggle and the shooting.

The federal investigation sought to determine whether the evidence of the events that led to Martin’s death were sufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman’s actions violated the federal criminal civil rights statutes, specifically Section 3631 of Title 42 of the U.S. Code or Section 249 of Title 18 of the U.S. Code, as well as other relevant federal criminal statutes. Section 3631 criminalizes willfully using force or threat of force to interfere with a person’s federally protected housing rights on account of that person’s race or color. Section 249 criminalizes willfully causing bodily injury to a person because of that person’s actual or perceived race. Courts define “willfully” to require proof that a defendant knew his acts were unlawful, and committed those acts in open defiance of the law. It is one of the highest standards of intent imposed by law.

The federal investigation examined whether Zimmerman violated civil rights statutes at any point during his interaction with Martin, from their initial encounter through the fatal shooting. This included investigating whether there is evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman violated Section 3631 by approaching Martin in a threatening manner before the fatal shooting because of Martin’s race and because he was using the residential neighborhood. Investigators also looked at whether there is evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman violated Section 3631 or Section 249, by using force against Martin either during their struggle or when shooting Martin, because of Martin’s race.

“Although the department has determined that this matter cannot be prosecuted federally, it is important to remember that this incident resulted in the tragic loss of a teenager’s life,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta of the Civil Rights Division. “Our decision not to pursue federal charges does not condone the shooting that resulted in the death of Trayvon Martin and is based solely on the high legal standard applicable to these cases.”

After a thorough and independent investigation into the facts surrounding the shooting, federal investigators determined that there is insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt a violation of these statutes. Accordingly, the investigation into this incident has been closed. This decision is limited strictly to the department’s inability to meet the high legal standard required to prosecute the case under the federal civil rights statutes; it does not reflect an assessment of any other aspect of the shooting.

The Justice Department is committed to investigations of allegations of bias-motivated violence and will continue to devote the resources required to ensure that allegations of civil rights violations are fully and completely investigated. The department aggressively prosecutes criminal civil rights violations whenever there is sufficient evidence to do so.

Justice Roy Moore strikes a major blow against judicial tyranny Bryan Fischer – Guest Columnist

Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Bryan FischerThe U.S. Constitution gives no jurisdiction whatsoever to any branch of the federal government to dictate marriage policy to the states. That’s the argument Roy Moore is making – and he’s on solid constitutional grounds in doing so.

Chief Justice Roy Moore of the Alabama Supreme Court has taken a stand against judicial tyranny on the matter of natural marriage. And strikingly and importantly, he has called on the governor of Alabama to do the same.

Last Friday, another judicial activist, U.S. District Judge Callie Granade, overturned Alabama’s marriage amendment, which was passed in 2006 by a staggering 81 percent of voters. (The judge has stayed her own ruling for two weeks.)

Justice Moore says he will not recognize the federal court ruling, and he is calling on Gov. Robert Bentley to do the same. And the beauty of it is that he is doing it all on solid constitutional grounds.

In Justice Moore’s letter to the governor (which you can read here) he states the constitutional and legal facts plainly and correctly. The Constitution, he says bluntly, gives no jurisdiction whatsoever to any branch of the federal government to dictate marriage policy to the states.

“As you know,” Judge Moore wrote, “nothing in the United States Constitution grants the federal government the authority to redefine the institution of marriage.” This, of course, is manifestly true. The authority to dictate marriage policy to the states is conspicuously absent from the list of powers “We the People” granted to the central government in Article I, Section 8.

In fact, the word “marriage” does not occur anywhere in the Constitution. You can read it front to back, back to front, upside down and in Sanskrit and you will find nary a mention of marriage anywhere in there, including the 14th Amendment, which was about slavery, not marriage. (On top of that, homosexual conduct was a crime everywhere in the United States at the time the 14th Amendment was enacted.)

All this means is that the issue of the definition of marriage is reserved, as Justice Moore correctly observes, to the states and the states alone.

“As Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, I will continue to recognize the Alabama Constitution and the will of the people overwhelmingly expressed in the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment,” Moore wrote.

Here’s how Justice Moore concludes his letter to the governor: “I ask you to continue to uphold and support the Alabama Constitution with respect to marriage, both for the welfare of this state and for our posterity. Be advised that I stand with you to stop judicial tyranny and any unlawful opinions issued without constitutional authority.”

Moore points out that 44 federal judges have already imposed their own view of morality on 21 states against the manifest will of the people as expressed at the ballot box, disenfranchising millions of voters in the process. The key to breaking the power of this out-of-control judicial tyranny is in the hands of our elected officials at the state level.

State justices can, as Justice Moore has done, defy unconstitutional federal rulings which have overturned marriage amendments. Governors, such as Gov. Bentley, can defy unconstitutional federal rulings by forbidding county clerks to issue marriage licenses which would be in violation of the state constitution. (First Amendment law firms such as the Alliance Defending Freedom have pledged to defend pro bono any clerks who refuse to issue same-sex licenses on grounds of conscience.)

Such actions would most emphatically not represent civil disobedience, but rather the best in civil obedience. An elected official can hardly be charged with rebellion when he is simply fulfilling the oath he took before God to uphold both the federal Constitution and the constitution of his own state.

What Justice Moore is advocating is not rebellion at all, but a call to quash the rebellion which has already occurred, the rebellion of federal judges against the limits imposed on them by our supreme legal document. With regard to federal judges, it is time, in Jefferson’s words, “to bind (them) down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” Justice Roy Moore is showing us how. May his tribe increase.

Bryan Fischer hosts “Focal Point with Bryan Fischer” every weekday on AFR Talk (American Family Radio) from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. (Central).

Daily Digest for Thursday
November 13, 2014 Print

THE FOUNDATION
“Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint.” –Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 15, 1787

TOP 5 RIGHT HOOKS
Details of Obama’s Immigration Plan Leaked
As early as Nov. 21, Barack Obama will announce his 10-point plan on immigration, circumventing Congress and disregarding the Constitution. Fox News reports on a leaked draft of Obama’s executive action that does everything from giving Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers a raise, to granting differed action to 4.5 million illegal immigrants. It will also give a discount to the first 10,000 illegal immigrants who apply for naturalization. In response, some GOP lawmakers advocate a tough line against Obama’s plan. Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) wants the GOP to work a provision into December’s appropriations bill where Congress leaves no money for Obama’s executive actions. But Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell wants a softer approach — more cooperation among politicians. Still, Obama could continue going Rambo on immigration by waiting until after Congress passes its appropriation bill Dec. 11, or by placing a few Republican carrots in the executive order. Republicans need to remember this is not just a policy debate: This is an argument over Rule of Law and the constitutionally separated powers in Washington. Both high ideals. More…

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Reid Has ‘No Desire’ to Create Obstruction
Outgoing Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ran the chamber with an iron fist, but now that he’s headed for the minority, he wants everybody to get along. “I’ve always believed it wise to follow Will Roger’s admonition: ‘Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today,'” he said from the Senate floor. Therefore, he added, “I’m ready … to work with [Mitch McConnell] in good faith to make this institution function again for the American people.” He then had the temerity to blame Republicans for the dysfunction. “I saw firsthand how a strategy of obstruction was debilitating to our system,” he continued, blaming McConnell for creating gridlock. “I have no desire to engage in that manner.” That’s all he ever did as majority leader — blocking amendments, letting House bills stack up on his desk, etc. We don’t believe for a second he’s turned over a new leaf.

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Part-Time Workers Can’t Get Full-Time Jobs
About 32% of part-time workers wish for a full-time job, according to a survey conducted by CareerBuilder, but a lack of education and a crummy job market has landed those people in jobs bringing in little money on few hours. Of those wishing for full-time work, 39% say they have to stretch their salary and 31% say they are the only person bringing home the bacon in their family. The challenge to getting that 40-hour-a-week position? Only 31% said they weren’t looking, 51% said they didn’t have the necessary skills, and the top reason was the lack of full-time work since the recession (54%). Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder, said, “Though we’re seeing an uptick in full-time, permanent hiring, many workers are still having difficulty finding positions in their field of expertise.” Five years after the federal government declared the recession over, one-third of the part-time workforce wishes for something better, but the jobs are opening up at an excruciatingly slow pace. Just the latest dispatch from the sorry Obama recovery. More…

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Senate Vote Looming on Keystone
Earlier this year, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid squelched any effort to pass legislation regarding the Keystone XL pipeline. Now that Democrats got thumped in the election, however, the legislation is headed for a vote. Why? Democrat Sen. Mary Landrieu needs help in her Louisiana runoff. Bloomberg reports, “The purpose of the vote would be symbolic: To highlight Landrieu’s support for the pipeline and her influence on energy issues in Washington — a centerpiece of her campaign. A vote in favor of the pipeline may benefit Landrieu in her Dec. 6 runoff election, in which she faces Republican Representative Bill Cassidy.” Landrieu’s being able to tout passage of the pipeline sure would be good on the stump in a state that stands to benefit from it. In fact, it may even be more helpful if Barack Obama vetoes it — he and his ecofascist constituents get what they want, while Landrieu can claim to have opposed Obama on something. It’s a win-win … for Democrats. Unfortunately, that usually means a loss for the country. More…

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School Refused Veterans Day Ceremony Over Firearms
The Eau Claire school district in Wisconsin did not hold its traditional Veterans Day ceremonies Tuesday because guns are scary. That’s right — the 21-gun salute that was a standard part of the program is no longer acceptable on school grounds. “We like to honor the veterans; we bring them in on a regular basis,” says Tim Libham, the executive director of administration with the district. “There are just some conditions that we have to adhere to and the shooting of guns, even with blanks, is something we don’t feel is appropriate given society, and the concerns that we have and that the community has, on school premises.” The ceremony was instead held at a local Burger King. School officials should be ashamed. They’re teaching kids that fear is more important than honor. More…

RIGHT ANALYSIS

The Phony Climate Deal With China
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Obama at the Star Trek convention
Barack Obama waves around five magic beans from his climate change talk with the Chinese while China walks away with the cow. On Tuesday, the White House announced it made an agreement with the Communist nation limiting carbon emissions. Obama’s in China this week, where the world’s two biggest energy producers hashed things out before UN delegates meet in Paris in December 2015 to write a new treaty regulating the world in response to supposedly man-made global warming.

Just like he has with so many other policies, Obama went it alone. Most everyone was surprised by the announcement that China and the U.S. had reached an agreement — a bad sign on an issue so large as climate change. But it’s a bum deal, and the Republican-led Congress must rescue Obama from himself.

During his first term, Obama set the goal of cutting the nation’s emissions to 17% below 2005 levels by 2020. This week’s announcement increases that goal of cutting emissions to 26-27% of 2005 levels by the year 2025. The White House said it was opening trade with China for “sustainable environmental goods and clean energy technologies.” The nations will be working to study responses to climate change together.

While Obama pledges to further cut emissions — strangling business and increasing the almighty power of the EPA — China pinky-promises (with fingers crossed) it will begin to decrease its emissions by 2030 and start to produce 20% of its energy from clean energy sources. Only years after the United States has met its goal will China think of following in those footsteps. Really? We’re supposed to believe this?

Last September, it was checkup time at the UN. Every country, from Ebola-stricken Liberia to large, industrialized nations, gathered in New York City to share specifics of what each had done to combat the scourge of global warming.

China slunk into that climate summit like the slacking student in a group project. It’s a “responsible major country,” said Zhang Gaoli, Vice Premier of the State Council of China, who added, “We will announce post-2020 actions on climate change as soon as we can.” The world’s biggest polluter, one of the giants when it comes to industry and energy production, had nothing.

In response to this week’s U.S.-China announcement, the UN released a statement: “Today, China and the United States have demonstrated the leadership that the world expects of them. This leadership demonstrated by the Governments of the world’s two largest economies will give the international community an unprecedented chance to succeed at reaching a meaningful, universal agreement in 2015.”

It took Obama — not the U.S. — a promise to further cut and cripple the U.S. economy for China to agree to the most basic of plans that would be agreeable to the ecofascists in the global community.

Senate Republican leaders hope to undermine Obama’s environmental policies. One of Congress’ most important tools is control of the purse strings. Republicans could defund Obama’s environmental policies, hamstring new EPA regulation by withholding funds and weaken Obama’s presence at the UN 2015 Paris meeting.

Indeed, the GOP believes it has a mandate from voters to stand in the gap against Obama and his economically damaging environmental policies. In a statement, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said, “The President said his policies were on the ballot, and the American people spoke up against them. It’s time for more listening, and less job-destroying red tape. Easing the burden already created by EPA regulations will continue to be a priority for me in the new Congress.”

But Obama has plenty of moves to hinder the Republicans’ pledge to work against his green policies. Obama still wields the veto pen and Republicans don’t have veto-proof majorities in either chamber. But neither can Obama enter into a binding international treaty. So he uses his phone to create working groups, research centers and initiatives with China — all little things compared to what Obama would truly like to accomplish.

“It’s hollow and not believable for China to claim it will shift 20 percent of its energy to non-fossil fuels by 2030, and a promise to peak its carbon emissions only allows the world’s largest economy to buy time,” Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) said. “China builds a coal-fired power plant every 10 days, is the largest importer of coal in the world, and has no known reserves of natural gas. This deal is a non-binding charade.”

Obama has his five magic beans, a pat on the back from the UN, a boiling political fight when he returns to Washington and a long road until the UN meeting in Paris. Going it alone has weakened Obama on the global stage. He can only go so far before the Constitution reins in his unlawful attempt to transform the country. But he’s still trying.

Pirouette Toward Asia
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China is aggressively pushing asymmetric militarization — that is, targeted ramping up capabilities to probe vulnerable seams and gaps in U.S. capabilities — as well as conducting more pronounced maneuvering in the South China Sea. That means the Obama administration’s strategy of “pivoting toward Asia” is now in what can best be described as an endless “pirouette.” A better description would be a classic death-spiral.

The U.S. just reached agreement with Communist China on notification protocols for major military exercises, ostensibly diffusing alarm when one nation conducts such an exercise. Perhaps like conducting an otherwise-unannounced major naval exercise in the South China Sea. Another agreement reaffirms the now 50-year-old traditional rules for encounters at sea and in the air, because, apparently, these things aren’t patently evident to all civilized nations by now, having been codified into international law for half a century or so. Great job, Chosen One! We’ll show those naked aggressors who’s boss!

Meanwhile, as Russian President Vladimir Putin tries desperately to get the gang back together — a few invasions of sovereign states, a shoot-down of a plane carrying a few hundred innocent civilians — Team Hopeless is trying to return to its “pivot” script. Never mind that Putin just solidified Russian economic ties to China with another Siberia gas deal. Also overlook the fact Moscow has reclassified NATO as Russia’s official adversary (did we mention NATO is ostensibly led by the U.S.?). We should also not dwell on “blame” for that SA-11 shot that murdered 300 innocents, either, right? Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.

The whole reason Barack Obama “pivoted” to “Asia” (read: China) in the first place was because of so much intense saber-rattling in the South China Sea. China’s bald regional hegemonic machinations meant the U.S. could no longer ignore the threats to its allies — Japan, Australia, New Zealand and a host of others within that vulnerable region.

Our “good friends” in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) recently developed their own version of the Marshall Plan to cope with all the unrest (which, by the way, they have generated): The so-called “Silk Road” is a $40 billion plan to buy off opposition to Chinese designs on regional hegemony. Effectively, it will force nations in the region to “chose a side” — the sides being, of course, the U.S. and China. As such an unwaveringly solid friend as the kowtow administration has demonstrated itself to be to these “lesser” states, any guesses which side most of them will choose?

Luckily, China has a long way to go to catch up with the U.S., despite the debut of its new J-31 stealth fighter — during Obama’s attendance at the Asian economic summit in Beijing, no less. Who could have predicted such timing for test flights? Of course, the “Chinese stealth fighter” is better known as the “F-35 Joint Strike Fighter,” an American jet, since the Chinese unabashedly stole top-secret technical data through cyber espionage against Lockheed Martin and its subcontractors. Testing their plane during Obama’s visit signals they know they have nothing to fear from him.

We should also point out the inconvenient truth of China’s deployment of two brigades of DF21D ballistic missiles — so-called “carrier killers,” and not without good reason. Supposedly, these missiles had been a long way off from reaching operational capability. Yet they are now part of what the emperor Chinese leader might call a “fully armed and operational battle station.”

Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall put a fine point on the whole issue of technology: “Our technological superiority is very much at risk. There are people designing systems specifically to defeat us in a very thoughtful and strategic way, and we’ve got to wake up, frankly.” Kendall went on to name several areas in which the U.S. remains critically vulnerable: China’s threat to the U.S. surface fleet as well as U.S. overseas bases; China’s challenge to U.S. air dominance; Chinese threats to U.S. space capabilities and access to space; and finally, China’s ability to mount cyber assaults on U.S. networks. The myth of U.S. technical superiority is quickly becoming just that: a myth.

The real lesson here is what is wrought when a nation chooses a position of weakness. Starting in 2009 with his World Apology Tour and continuing with numerous international failings and foreign-policy-related humiliations, Obama has abjectly demonstrated what happens when the U.S. abdicates its leadership role in the world and chooses instead to be the world’s buddy. Rogue nations, belligerent nations and nations ruled by an iron thumb are not content with being anyone’s buddy. They are content only with being conqueror.

OPINION IN BRIEF

American writer E. B. White (1899-1985): “Democracy is the recurrent suspicion that more than half of the people are right more than half the time.”

Columnist Ann Coulter: “People who voted Republican took the attitude of ‘We’re giving you one more chance.’ They are not going to back off, and they can’t be tricked or lied to. They’re looking the GOP in the eye and saying: We’re not fooling around: Amnesty is dead, right? Republicans won by ignoring the establishment when it said, Don’t criticize amnesty! and ignoring the tea party when it said, Let’s run candidates like Christine O’Donnell! Don’t confuse who’s good at what here. The establishment has to drop amnesty and the tea party has got to drop — for now — demands for government shutdowns to repeal Obamacare. Without the presidency, Republicans’ sole objective for the next two years is to keep sending Obama bills that 80 percent of Americans will support. They can pass some great legislation — and they’ll also force Democrats into votes that won’t be easy to explain to their constituents. Republicans might start by dusting off that bill requiring Congress to live under Obamacare.”

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Historian Victor Davis Hanson: “Midterm voters apparently understood that ‘comprehensive immigration reform’ has devolved into something like comprehensive health care reform — a euphemism for Obama’s larger efforts at fundamentally transforming America. … It’s hard to find supporters of immigration reform who argue that the Kenyan, South Korean, Czech or Jamaican applicant for entry into the U.S. should be treated equally on the basis of skill sets, education or prior background — rather than as a future identity-politics voter. … If advocates of comprehensive immigration reform are going to win Americans over to their side, they are going to have to find a new approach to the debate that they have now lost. For now, the position remains the current one of ethnic-privileging one group over another. The selfish position is the current one of burdening the host society by accommodating the language of the guest. The surreal position is that of ingratitude of guests toward generous host country by demanding that its laws either be ignored or changed to fit their own particular agendas and preferences. On matters of immigration, open-borders advocates have become reactionaries. Last week’s midterm results proved it.”

 

Polls show Republicans firmly ahead in 3 key Senate races

WASHINGTON (MCT) — In the final stretch before Tuesday’s midterm elections, Republicans appear on solid footing in three key Senate races, according to new polls that show Democratic hopes of holding control of the Senate looking increasing faint.

In Kentucky, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has a nine-point lead over Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes, the NBC News/Marist poll found. Meanwhile, Senate races in Georgia and Louisiana appear headed for runoffs, but in both cases the Democrats were poised to lose the head-to-head matchups.

The outlook in the Southern states is not a shock to Democrats. All three states are rough terrain for Democrats in any year — and even more at a time when voters express widespread dissatisfaction with President Barack Obama’s performance on nearly every major issue of the day.

Still, all three races have featured flashes of hope for Democrats in recent months. Grimes has shown herself a tough campaigner and unafraid to knock the president and his policies. In Georgia, Michelle Nunn’s fight against Republican David Perdue has become a test of whether the Democratic Party can mobilize African American voters in an off year. In Louisiana, two-term incumbent Mary Landrieu is hoping her powerful name and GOP division can inch her over the edge.

The polling suggests Landrieu won’t know the answer until the results of a Dec. 6 runoff election. Among likely voters in Tuesday’s ballot, Landrieu stood at 44 percent, compared with Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy’s 36 percent and Tea Party-aligned candidate Rob Maness’ 15 percent. One candidate needs to exceed 50 percent to avoid a rematch. In hypothetical head-to-head matchups against either Cassidy or Maness, Landrieu loses, the poll indicates.

In Georgia, Nunn was trailing Perdue, 44 percent to 48 percent, and Perdue was projected to win in a runoff. In Kentucky, McConnell was leading Grimes, 50 percent to 41 percent.

If Democrats lose each of the three Senate seats, their slog to 50 seats in the Senate is tough. They would have to win four of the six tightest races across the country in Alaska, Colorado, Arkansas, Iowa, North Carolina, and New Hampshire.

Republicans need to pick up six seats to gain control of the Senate and are already seen as having a lock in South Dakota, West Virginia and Montana.

–Kathleen Hennessey
Tribune Washington Bureau

How This School Treated a Marine Dad who Refused to Let Daughter Study Islam Is SHAMEFUL

Kevin Wood, a Marine and father living in Maryland, is under a “no-trespass order” at La Plata High School after he asked his daughter to be excused from a biased assignment about Islam.

The patriotic father first spoke first to an administrative assistant, then discussed the issue with Vice Principal Shannon Morris. But a school official is making the wild accusation that Wood threatened to cause problems at the school in his conversation with Morris.

She said: “Safety comes first. We don’t allow disruptions at the schools, especially if we’re forewarned of them.”

Wood denies making any threats. His version of the conversation is that he explained in no uncertain terms that he does “not believe in” Islam and wants his daughter removed from class while other students study the Muslim religion.

The Wood family will be taking their complaints to state legislators and the Maryland Department of Education. But first, he discussed this important issue with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly (above):

Wood’s wife Melissa said her husband was simply trying to make a point.

“The people do not understand what he endured when he was over in Iraq,” she said through tears. “And he lost friends, and he lost brothers and sisters to these people.”

The Wood family is trying to work out an agreement with the school board. If they can’t, they say their daughter won’t do the assignment and will take the ‘F.’

It is very interesting how seriously the school takes an assignment teaching about the “5 Pillars of Islam” but wouldn’t dare have students memorize the 10 Commandments or Biblical scripture.

Do you support this Marine dad’s battle against his child’s school? Please leave us a comment and tell us what you think.

Read more: http://www.thepoliticalinsider.com/school-treated-marine-dad-refused-let-daughter-study-islam-shameful-video/#ixzz3HgArvbVD

The Patriot Post · http://patriotpost.us/digests/29070
Daily Digest
Sep. 12, 2014

THE FOUNDATION
“[T]his is not an indefinite government deriving its powers from the general terms prefixed to the specified powers – but, a limited government tied down to the specified powers, which explain and define the general terms.” –James Madison, Speech in Congress, 1792

TOP 5 RIGHT HOOKS
Blocking Obama’s ISIL Strategy
In his speech to the nation1 on ISIL Wednesday, Barack Obama declared, “[W]e will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists. … [W]e will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are. That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq.” He claimed to be assembling a “broad coalition” in support of his mission so as to not, as he has previously put it, “go it alone” like George W. Bush in Iraq. Bush went with support from 37 countries; Obama has fewer than 10. And one of them is not Turkey, which announced Thursday2 it would not permit U.S. aircraft to conduct airstrikes from its air bases. That limits our options to carriers in the region or other NATO bases further away. Oh, and Great Britain and Germany3 also won’t be helping with airstrikes. Behold, the results of “leading from behind.”

We’re Not at War, Kerry Says
Secretary of State John Kerry insisted Thursday that we are not at war with ISIL – at least not just yet. “What we are doing,” he said, “is engaging in a very significant counter-terrorism operation.” Just to reiterate the point, he said, “If somebody wants to think about it as being a war with ISIL they can do so, but the fact is it’s a major counter-terrorism operation.” We’re glad he cleared that up. It reminds us of Kerry’s comments just over one year ago4, when he was pumping up action against Syria’s Bashar al-Assad. He promised we would counter Assad “without engaging in troops on the ground, or any other prolonged kind of effort, in a very limited, very targeted, very short-term effort,” and that any action would be an “unbelievably small, limited kind of effort.” The administration sure is twisting itself into knots to assure its hard-left base that Barack Obama is not George W. Bush. Kerry’s remarks would be funny if they weren’t so disgraceful.

To Claim Islam Is Like Other Religions ‘Is Just Plain Wrong’
HBO’s Bill Maher is a leftist atheist and no friend of Christianity. But he came to the religion’s defense in addressing Barack Obama’s assertions regarding ISIL and Islam. “Vast numbers of Christians do not believe that if you leave the Christian religion you should be killed for it,” Maher said, objecting to comparisons. “Vast numbers of Christians do not treat women as second class citizens. Vast numbers of Christians do not believe if you draw a picture of Jesus Christ you should get killed for it. So yes, does [ISIL] do Khmer Rouge-like activities where they just kill people indiscriminately who aren’t just like them? Yes. And would most Muslim people in the world do that or condone that? No. But most Muslim people in the world do condone violence just for what you think. … So to claim that this religion is like other religions is just naïve and plain wrong.” For once, Maher is right on the money.

Executive Action on Immigration Possible by Year’s End
The White House promised angry Latino lawmakers Thursday the president would make his move on immigration “reform” before the end of the year. The lawmakers feel Barack Obama betrayed them when he announced delaying his pen from drawing sweeping changes to the immigration system, possibly granting amnesty to five million illegal immigrants. White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said, “The president understands the depth of the broken immigration system that we have and he’s bound and determined to make sure that we fix it because it’s impacting our economy, it’s impacting our job growth and it’s a humanitarian issue that’s impacting families across the country. So we’re going to fix it and we’ll do it before the end of the year.” While the delay helps Democrats running for re-election in November, Hot Air’s Allahpundit5 says the president could wait until next year to act on immigration in order to help his successor win the White House in 2016. More…6

Scientists Say Gov’t Intervention Is Healing Ozone Layer
A new United Nations report praises government intervention for helping heal the ozone layer over Antarctica, a finding made famous by scientists Mario Molina and F. Sherwood Rowland in 1974 – incidentally during the height of the “next ice age” scare. The ozone hole was primarily blamed on chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), prompting a global ban on the compound in 1987. Now, CBS News reports, “For the first time in 35 years, scientists were able to confirm a statistically significant and sustained increase in stratospheric ozone, which shields us from solar radiation that causes skin cancer, crop damage and other problems.” In fact, an older UN study predicted that, had no action been taken, we’d be looking at an additional two million skin cancer cases annually within the next decade and a half. So regardless of whether the ozone is experiencing a natural oscillation (which it most assuredly is), alarmists can now make the unproven assertion that their activism helped prevent a calamity. Molina says the recovering ozone layer is “a victory for diplomacy and for science and for the fact that we were able to work together.” And no doubt, scientists will use this new report to stress the need for a pact to limit greenhouse gases like CO2, which they say will otherwise threaten any long-term ozone recovery. More…7

For more, visit Right Hooks8.

RIGHT ANALYSIS
Boos for Cruz Shouldn’t Overshadow Christian Persecution
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) was booed off the stage of a Washington, DC, summit exploring the plight of Christians in the Middle East because he supported the nation of Israel. The whole episode illustrates the complexity of the Middle East – especially when it comes to our understanding of the region’s religious and political tensions.

A video of the event9 shows Cruz standing before the crowd, which was murmuring angrily. “I will say this,” Cruz said. “I am saddened to see that some here – not everyone, but some here – are so consumed with hate.”

The audience grew angry and a man near the camera shouted, “You speak for yourself!”

“If you will not stand with Israel,” Cruz said, “then I will not stand with you,” walking off the stage. The camera follows him, catching the words projected onto the wall: “Solidarity Dinner.”

The summit, put on by In Defense of Christians (IDC), brought together Coptic Christians, Evangelicals, Orthodox Christians and Catholics, as well as Democrats and Republicans alike. All were there to raise awareness of the threats to religious freedom in the Middle East, particularly ISIL’s threat of genocide10 against Christians.

IDC president Toufic Baaklini said11 the goal of the summit was to “empower the Middle Eastern Christian Diaspora and energize the American people to stand in solidarity [with] the ancient Christian communities of the Middle East. Their survival is vital to stability in the region, and their ability to flourish in their countries of origin has national security implications for the United States.”

Unfortunately, that laudable goal will be eclipsed by click-bait headlines focused only on the brief altercation with Cruz. Meanwhile, the intolerant drum of radical Islam beats stronger and stronger in the dissolving states of the Middle East.

While the gathered Christians may have been of one Lord, one faith, one baptism, they were not all one with the state of Israel. Let’s give Cruz the benefit of the doubt on this one, as this misunderstanding is a common problem between Evangelical Americans and some of the Christian communities still living in the land where Jesus walked. Religion News Service points out12:

“The episode highlighted a central tension between U.S. evangelicals, who strongly support Israel, and Middle Eastern Christians – including thousands of Palestinian Christians – who hold Israel responsible for expropriated Arab lands and the death toll in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

However, despite the well-documented brutality of dictators like Saddam Hussein in Iraq and the Assads in Syria Christians in those countries prefer the relative stability of those dictators to the jihadist alternatives. The Wall Street Journal’s Peggy Noonan writes13, “An estimated two-thirds of the Christians of Iraq have fled that country since the 2003 U.S. invasion. They are being driven from their villages in northern Iraq. They are terrorized, brutalized, executed. This week an eyewitness in Mosul, which fell to Islamic State in June, told NBC News the jihadists were committing atrocities. In Syria, too, they have executed Christians for refusing to convert.”

IDC set a lofty goal. In its statement after the disruption14, Baaklini admitted that people in the Church and in the field of foreign policy thought the organization would fail. “For more than 48 hours,” he said, “our initial IDC conference was successfully bridging divides of faith, language, geography and politics.”

The views of the speakers ranged across the spectrum. Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA) spoke, as well as writer Eric Metaxas, who schooled president Obama15 at the 2012 Presidential Prayer Breakfast. On the other hand, some of the Christian leaders from the Middle East supported groups like Hamas or Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria, The Washington Free Beacon reported16.

Within that spectrum of Christians stood Sen. Cruz. In a statement17 explaining why he left the dinner, Cruz outlined his message on Israel:

“When I spoke in strong support of Israel and the Jewish people, who are being persecuted and murdered by the same vicious terrorists who are also slaughtering Christians, many Christians in the audience applauded. But, sadly, a vocal and angry minority of attendees at the conference tried to shout down my expression of solidarity with Israel.”

Cruz is right to show solidarity with Israel, a key ally of the United States and the only nation in the Middle East where Christians needn’t fear persecution. But Mollie Hemingway of The Federalist argues Cruz is no hero for what he did18, saying he approached the whole speech politically, meeting with The Washington Free Beacon beforehand and using the situation generally to advance his platform.

“When Cruz was supposed to give the keynote address and discuss the deadly serious topic of persecution of Christians,” Hemingway wrote, “he instead insulted a largely immigrant and foreign crowd as a group that didn’t understand their own political situation and stomped out of the room after calling them a bunch of haters.”

Thus was the IDC summit reduced to another sound byte in the Beltway political machine. But its purpose remains paramount: Christians are being threatened10 in the Middle East – Christians with complex and nuanced geopolitical views based on interests sometimes not aligned with the U.S. If they fall, the region – and the world – will be far worse for it.

The Phony Investigation of Scott Walker
It’s not unusual for the Leftmedia to behave corruptly and circle the wagons for Democrats. Aside from becoming an echo chamber for Democrat talking points, the media have a history of dishonesty – from intentionally blowing up GM trucks to “prove” the dangers of owning them, to utterly ignoring Bill Clinton’s one-man War on Women. There isn’t much we haven’t witnessed. Currently, the mainstream media are aligned to smear Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker with lies and disinformation before the November election.

In 2012, Democrat Wisconsin district attorneys, led by Milwaukee County DA John Chisholm, launched a secret probe known as a John Doe investigation of Gov. Walker, alleging he illegally coordinated a conservative group’s fundraising. These Democrats sought to prove Walker received an illegal in-kind campaign contribution in the form of ads Walker approved. Since Democrats never violate campaign finance laws, they are uniquely qualified to pursue those who do. The district attorneys issued more than 100 subpoenas, demanded private information from individuals and conservative groups, and even conducted secret raids. Furthermore, those targeted or privy to the investigation were required to keep it secret.

But prosecutors lost the first round in court as Judge Gregory Peterson quashed their subpoenas, saying they “fail probable cause.”

After the John Doe debacle, the DAs appealed to U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Randa. The judge slammed the prosecutors for seeking “refuge in the Court of Public Opinion, having lost in this Court of law.”

The defendants then asked for the release of reams of the secret documents while leaving out those involving two unnamed, unindicted persons for the sake of their privacy. Randa agreed. The DAs then complained that all records should be made public rather than a select few. Randa shot back saying that the prosecutors’ complaint “smacks of irony.” Their position is “at odds with their duty as prosecutors, which is to see that in any John Doe proceeding the rights of the innocent accused are protected in pursuit of a criminal investigation.”

While that state appeal was pending, Eric O’Keefe of the Wisconsin Club for Growth filed a federal civil rights suit, alleging the DAs’ secret investigation and tactics are an unconstitutional abuse of his civil rights. The civil rights case is currently before three judges from the Seventh Circuit Court, and the media are dutifully touting a big win for the Wisconsin prosecutors.

The story broke last June, and since then the Leftmedia has portrayed Walker as another corrupt conservative politician, hypocritically violating campaign finance laws. Despite the fact that the case was thrown out of a state court and then a federal court for lack of evidence, Democrats continue pursuing Walker as though he were the reincarnation of another Wisconsinite, Sen. Joe McCarthy.

The real in-kind campaign contribution went from prosecutors to Walker’s Democrat challenger Mary Burke. Democrats have handicapped fundraising at many of the most effective conservative independent groups while forcing them to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on lawyers to defend their rights in court. Burke has made the probe a centerpiece of her campaign, which has helped her get close in the polls.

But prosecutors aren’t done yet. They’re asking the Seventh Circuit Court to let them reopen the investigation, despite its nearly two years of failing to nail Walker on any charge. Furthermore, they claim immunity from being sued and that the interests of the public outweigh the interests of the investigated group. Clearly, all they really want is to drag out the constant allegations until the November elections, hoping to rid themselves of Walker. Let’s hope the voters of Wisconsin aren’t fooled by Democrats’ shameful behavior.

For more, visit Right Analysis8.

TOP 5 RIGHT OPINION COLUMNS
David Harsanyi: Actually, Senators, You’re the Ones Who Threaten the Country19
Jonah Goldberg: Is the Islamic State Really un-Islamic?20
Mona Charen: Presidential Malpractice21
Michelle Malkin: Post-9/11: Protect the Freedom to Warn22
Stephen Moore: In Japan’s Economic Folly, a Lesson for U.S.23
For more, visit Right Opinion24.

OPINION IN BRIEF
Canadian-American chemist and author O. A. Battista (1917-1995): “One of the hardest things to teach a child is that the truth is more important than the consequences.”

Columnist David Harsanyi: “It is true that 16 states and the District of Columbia, along with more than 500 cities and towns, have passed resolutions calling on Congress to reinstitute restriction on free speech. Polls consistently show that the majority of Americans support the abolishment of super PACs. So it’s important to remember that one of the many reasons the Founding Fathers offered us the Constitution was to offer a bulwark against ‘democracy.’ Senators may have an unhealthy obsession with the democratic process, and Supreme Court justices are on the bench for life for that very reason. On Monday, Democrats offered an amendment to repeal the First Amendment in an attempt to protect their own political power. Whiny senators – most of them patrons to corporate power and special interests – engaged in one of the most cynical abuses of their power in recent memory. Those who treat Americans as if they were hapless proles unable to withstand the power of a television commercial are the ones who fear speech. That’s not what the American republic is all about.”

Columnist Jonah Goldberg: “Is the Islamic State ‘not Islamic’? Moreover, is it really ‘clear’ that it’s not Islamic? … [T]he fact that the majority of its victims are Muslim is irrelevant. Lenin and Stalin killed thousands of communists and socialists; that doesn’t mean Lenin and Stalin weren’t communists and socialists. If such terrorists who kill Muslims aren’t Muslims, why do we give them Korans when we imprison them? … [I]t also seems flatly wrong for an American president to be declaring what is or is not Islamic – or Christian or Jewish. Given the First Amendment alone, there’s something un-American in any government official simply declaring what is or is not a religion. … Instead of Americans trying to persuade Muslims of the world that terrorism is un-Islamic, why shouldn’t Muslims be working harder to convince us?”

Comedian Argus Hamilton: “Obama vowed to arm Syrian rebels to fight ISIS. He had a change of heart. Last month he dismissed the rebels as doctors, dentists and pharmacists, but he’s come to realize it’s cheaper to give them the half billion now than pay their bills through ObamaCare.”

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team

Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform – Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen – standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.

Links

http://patriotpost.us/alexander/29028

http://www.albawaba.com/news/turkey-u.s.-iraq-603319

http://patriotpost.us/posts/29034

http://patriotpost.us/posts/19926

http://hotair.com/archives/2014/09/11/oh-my-some-senate-democrats-now-want-obamas-executive-amnesty-suspended-indefinitely/

http://www.politico.com/story/2014/09/white-house-immigration-latino-lawmakers-110871.html

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/ozone-layer-begins-to-recover-u-n-panel-says/

http://patriotpost.us/

http://patriotpost.us/articles/27642

http://www.indefenseofchristians.org/idc/release-washington-summit-call-attention-plight-christians-middle-east/

http://www.religionnews.com/2014/09/11/ted-cruz-booed-stage-touts-israel-christian-solidarity/

http://online.wsj.com/articles/the-genocide-of-mideastern-christians-1410474449

http://www.indefenseofchristians.org/idc/statement-idc-president-following-disruption-idc-gala-dinner/

http://freebeacon.com/issues/ted-cruz-stands-up-to-hatred-and-bigotry-at-conference-of-middle-eastern-christians/

http://www.cruz.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=1723

http://thefederalist.com/2014/09/11/ted-cruz-is-no-hero-for-insulting-a-room-of-persecuted-christians/

http://patriotpost.us/opinion/29041

http://patriotpost.us/opinion/29042

http://patriotpost.us/opinion/29010

http://patriotpost.us/opinion/29044

http://patriotpost.us/opinion/29049

http://patriotpost.us/opinion

New Book Says C.I.A. Official in Benghazi Held Up Rescue

The American Mission in Benghazi, Libya, during the 2012 attack. Five C.I.A. contractors who were nearby say they were told not to intervene.
ESAM OMRAN AL-FETORI / REUTERS
By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK
SEPTEMBER 4, 2014
CAIRO — Five commandos guarding the C.I.A. base in Benghazi, Libya, in September 2012 say that the C.I.A. station chief stopped them from interceding in time to save the lives of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and an American technician during the attack on the diplomatic mission there.

In a new book scheduled for release next week and obtained by The New York Times, the commandos say they protested repeatedly as the station chief ordered them to wait in their vehicles, fully armed, for 20 minutes while the attack on the diplomatic mission was unfolding less than a mile away.

“If you guys do not get here, we are going to die!” a diplomatic security agent then shouted to them over the radio, the commandos say in the book, and they left the base in defiance of the chief’s continuing order to “stand down.”

The book, titled “13 Hours,” is the first public account of the night’s events by any of the American security personnel involved in the attack. The accusation that the station chief, referred to in the book only as “Bob,” held back the rescue opens a new front in a fierce political battle over who is at fault for the American deaths.

Republicans have blamed President Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton, then the secretary of state, for the security failure.

American officials have previously acknowledged that the Central Intelligence Agency security team paused to try to enlist support from Libyan militia allies. But the book is the first detailed account of the extent of the delay, its consequences for the rescue attempt, and who made the decisions.

The commandos’ account — which fits with the publicly known facts and chronology — suggests that the station chief issued the “stand down” orders on his own authority. He hoped to enlist local Libyan militiamen, and the commandos speculate that he hoped the Libyans could carry out the rescue alone to avoid exposing the C.I.A. base.

No meaningful Libyan help ever materialized.

In an emailed statement on Thursday, a senior intelligence official said “a prudent, fast attempt was made to rally local support for the rescue effort and secure heavier weapons.” The official said “there was no second-guessing those decisions being made on the ground” and “there were no orders to anybody to stand down in providing support.”

The commandos were former members of American Special Forces teams hired by the intelligence agency as private contractors. Two of the team, both former Navy Seals, died fighting the attackers at the C.I.A. base later that night. Five others are credited as co-authors of “13 Hours,” which was written with their cooperation by Mitchell Zuckoff, a professor of journalism at Boston University. Mark Geist, Kris Paronto and John Tiegen are credited by name, and two of the authors use pseudonyms.

They say that they learned that the mission’s building had been set on fire during the short drive there, from another plea for help over the radio. The ambassador and the technician, Sean Smith, suffocated in the smoke.

No American fired a weapon of any kind in defense of the mission until the C.I.A. commandos reached the compound, more than 40 minutes after the attack began, the commandos say. The Libyan guards hired to protect the mission quickly retreated. The handful of diplomatic security agents, caught by surprise and outnumbered, withdrew to separate buildings without firing a shot.

One of the commandos fired grenades to help disperse the attackers and clear an entrance to the mission. They later exchanged fire when the attackers returned for a second assault. And the commandos say that after pulling back to the C.I.A. base they fought off-and-on gun battles with fighters lurking in the shadows outside for much of the night.

Although the commandos write of several Libyans who risked their lives to help the Americans, the difficulty of discerning friend from foe is a recurring theme. They write that a supportive militia leader who appeared to be helping them approach the mission also said he was talking on the phone with the attackers, trying to negotiate.

“What’s the difference between how Libyans look when they’re coming to help you versus when they’re coming to kill you?” the commandos joked with the diplomatic security agents. “Not much.”

The contractors say they raced so quickly to arm themselves when they heard the alarm that one failed to put on underwear. Another went into the battle in cargo shorts.

Then, fully armed, they found themselves waiting inside their armored vehicles, making small talk.

“Hey, we gotta go now! We’re losing the initiative!” Mr. Tiegen says he complained to the station chief, who he says replied, “No, stand down, you need to wait.”

“We are going to have the local militia handle it,” the chief added later, according to the commandos.

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