BEN WEINGARTEN

Reader. Writer. Thinker. Commentator. Truth Seeker.

Tag: Sharia

Salon: A Spirited Discussion on Syria, the Sunni-Shia Battle for the Middle East and Russia

Salon gave me the opportunity to come on as the token conservative panelist in a discussion with host Carrie Sheffield of Bold and longtime national security/foreign affairs correspondent Courtney Kealy.

Check out our conversation on Syria, the Sunni-Shia battle for the Middle East and the broader proxy war going on between Russia and the U.S.

Carrie Sheffield sits down with Benjamin Weingarten and Courtn…WATCH LIVE: What is Aleppo? Don’t be like Gary Johnson. Here’s all you need to know about the crisis in Aleppo.

Posted by Salon on Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Featured Image Source: Salon/Facebook Live

‘Inequality’ Does Not Cause ISIS, Or How Our Western Materialist Worldview is Killing Us

Recently, world-renowned French socialist economist Thomas Piketty proffered the argument that “inequality” is the cause of ISIS.

While it may not be surprising given that Piketty’s life work has been dedicated to studying inequality (and arguing that to eradicate it we ought to tear down the capitalist system), Piketty revealed a critical insight about the Western elite: It believes global jihadism is attributable to materialist factors.

I challenge this thesis in my latest piece over at the indispensable City Journal titled Did Inequality Cause ISIS?, and argue that in order to effectively combat the global jihad, we must look at the world through the same prism as Islamic supremacists, not the materialist one apparently subscribed to by our entire foreign policy Establishment, including but not limited to the Obama administration (see “jobs for jihadis”).

Also, the great Dan Bongino spoke about my piece during his Conservative Review podcast. Listen starting at 21:13 below:

 

Featured Image Source: LiveLeak screengrab.

Allah and Man at Yale

Here’s a taste of my latest at The Federalist, in which I question why Yale University is taking $10 million from a jihadi-tied Saudi billionaire to build an Islamic (read: Sharia) Law center that propagates an ideology under which Yale itself could not exist:

While America remains financially and militarily the mightiest nation on Earth, it is losing the war Islamic supremacism is waging against her because it is chiefly an ideological one. We have the strength to defend ourselves, but we lack the knowledge and the will to defeat our enemies. We are morally relativistic and therefore unable to acknowledge that different peoples are different and that not all ideologies are equal or seek the same ends.

But people like Saleh Kamal surely understand us. In the conquest ideology inherent to Sharia—Islam compels Muslims to extend the Islamic sphere, the ummah, over all the world—America has found an enemy able to best take advantage of our deeply held freedoms. Sharia explicitly calls for the use of the very tactics against which America is most vulnerable.

As a consequence of our willful blindness (contrasted with Islamic supremacists’ comparable clarity), we are constructing Islamic law centers, inviting Muslims to immigrate by the hundreds of thousands without recognition that Hijra is a form of jihad, and, 14 years after 9/11, our top military minds are arguing that we back al-Qaeda against ISIS—that is, the newly “good jihadists” against the “bad jihadists.” For the coup de grace, we are actively aiding, abetting, and enabling Iran’s Twelver jihadist regime in its quest for nuclear domination of the Middle East and beyond.

Read the whole thing here.

Featured Image Source: YouTube Screengrab/Firing Line.

Why Did Huma Abedin Feel the Need to Bring the Desecration of a Koran to Sec of State Clinton’s Attention?

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was understandably kept abreast of all manner of news from all over the world during her tenure as Secretary of State.

But buried amidst the thousands of emails recently released by the State Department is one news report of particular interest sent from top Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

Here is Abedin’s note:

Unclassified email from Huma Abedin to Hillary Clinton dated September 12, 2010 and released August 31, 2015. Doc No. C05772407.

Unclassified email from Huma Abedin to Hillary Clinton dated September 12, 2010 and released August 31, 2015. Doc No. C05772407.

This email begs the question: Why did Huma Abedin feel the need to bring the desecration of a Koran in East Lansing, MI to the attention of the Secretary of State?

Did Abedin feel that Clinton might be concerned about the news “inciting” attacks in America or abroad?

Might she have felt that such a story could be leveraged politically?

Was it just something Abedin as a Muslim found personally reprehensible, that she felt her confidant ought to be made aware of?

Actions like Koran-burning presumably would have been important to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, given her stated support for suppressing such activity.

As I noted elsewhere:

Read More

America’s See-No-Islam Problem Exposed With Boston Jihadism

The Boston Globe published a column in the wake of the shooting of an Islamic State-linked jihadist from Rosindale, Massachusetts that is a quintessential example of why the West is losing to Islamic supremacists.

In “Are Boston terrorism cases a trend?” two Globe authors reach out to several “antiterrorism specialists” and ask why it is that Boston appears to be so “vulnerable to violent extremism.”

Some submit that Boston’s “emergence as an international hub may leave it exposed to strains of radicalized behavior.”

Others find the existence of Boston-based jihadists curious given these jihadists “cannot be traced to one network, and individuals and groups do not appear to be connected.”

One such expert who has written on the Islamic State, J.M. Berger, acknowledges that “There is some degree of social network here that seems to be involved in radical thought.”

Halfway through the Globe article, the reader is left utterly unaware of any link between Boston jihadists and…jihadism. In fact, readers will not find the word “jihadist” in the column.

What readers do see is the lexicon of our see-no-Islam national security establishment, including euphemisms such as “violent extremism,” “homegrown terrorist,” and “radical presence.”

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

The Global Warming Jihadists Seek to Silence the Dissenters

“The world must not belong to those who slander the prophets of Global Warming, Climate Change, or Climate Disruption.”

So said Democratic U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse in a fatwa issued in the Washington Post.

Sheldon Whitehouse

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) delivers a speech on the Senate floor on May 18, 2015. (Image Source: YouTube screengrab)

OK — perhaps that was not what he said verbatim, but it might as well have been.

Whitehouse intimated that racketeering charges be considered regarding Big Oil’s support of research challenging the supposed climate change consensus.

Without a hint of irony given the nature and activities of the climate change movement, Whitehouse compared the oil industry – which after the American people will be most harmed by regulations putatively relating to climate — to the RICO-violating tobacco business:

The Big Tobacco playbook looked something like this: (1) pay scientists to produce studies defending your product; (2) develop an intricate web of PR experts and front groups to spread doubt about the real science; (3) relentlessly attack your opponents.

In a point almost beyond parody, Whitehouse relies on a report by a Drexel University professor whose “environmental justice” work has been funded by federal grants worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. A nakedly partisan voice, the “Culture and Communication” department professor lists as areas of research and teaching “Critical Theory,” “Social Movements” and “Social Change,” to go along with the more relevant “Environmental Sociology.”

The professor writes that the “climate denial network”

span[s] a wide range of activities, including political lobbying, contributions to political candidates, and a large number of communication and media efforts that aim at undermining climate science.

None of these activities are illegal, or even unethical – though if Whitehouse gets his way the thought crime of challenging global warming may soon be.

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

Hillary Clinton’s Hypocritical and Totalitarian War on Free Speech

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has suggested that a key litmus test in evaluating prospective Supreme Court appointees would be their willingness to challenge “the right of billionaires to buy elections.”

Presumably, a suitable judge would indicate a desire to overturn the Citizens United decision that struck down a ban on political expenditures by corporations and unions ruled to violate the First Amendment protection of free speech – a case coincidentally centered on Citizen United’s attempt to advertise for and air a film critical of none other than Clinton.

Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to the reporters at United Nations headquarters, Tuesday, March 10, 2015. Clinton conceded that she should have used a government email to conduct business as secretary of state, saying her decision was simply a matter of "convenience." (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to the reporters at United Nations headquarters, Tuesday, March 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

In light of recent allegations swirling around the presidential favorite, Clinton’s support of such a position is highly ironic.

For while the former secretary of State may oppose the rights of the wealthy to spend money on politics, she seems to have no such concern with the wealthy spending money on the Clinton Foundation and her husband Bill – all while Hillary served in the Obama administration.

Would Clinton seek a Supreme Court justice who would protect the rights of the likes of Carlos Slim and James Murdoch to contribute to the favored cause of a politician and shower the politician’s spouse with millions for speaking engagements?

If so, this apparent hypocrisy can be read in one of two ways:

  1. Clinton believes that money does not have a corrupting influence so long as it is funneled through “indirect” channels
  2. Clinton believes that the wealthy and powerful ought to bypass funding elections and simply pay politicians outright.

Appearances of impropriety aside, there are a few substantive questions around political speech that Clinton should be required to address.

Why does Clinton believe that the government has a compelling interest in stifling the political speech of any American, rich or poor?

How does Clinton square her supposed advocacy of human rights with her belief in inhibiting the right to free speech — which facilitates the robust and vigorous debate essential to a liberal society?

More generally, given a system in which millions of dollars are spent on losing causes each election cycle on both the left and right, what have Americans to fear about spending so long as laws are enforced equally and impartially regarding “pay-to-play” schemes and other politically corrupt activity?

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

Egyptian President Crushes Jihadists While Obama Coddles Them

Few Americans would want to live under the rule of General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Egypt’s authoritarian president. But on the other hand, neither would any jihadist.

An Egyptian administrative court recently upheld the nation’s Ministry of Religious Endowment’s decision to shutter 27,000 mosques deemed most supportive of jihadism.

Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, President of Egypt, speaks during the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014. (Credit: AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, President of Egypt, speaks during the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014. (Credit: AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

This marks the latest in a series of steps taken by the Sisi regime to cripple terrorists.

Such actions evince an attitude and approach toward countering the threat of Islamic supremacism entirely counter to that espoused by the Obama administration.

Consider four critical areas in which Presidents Sisi and Obama have taken opposing sides:

Defining the Threat

President Sisi has very publicly criticized Islam — linking it to jihadist destruction and backwardness in the Arab world. President Barack Obama has made every effort to de-link Islam from Islamic terror, arguing that Islam itself, not its reformation, is essential to combatting jihadism.

During a December 2014 speech at the seat of Sunni Islamic learning, Al-Azhar University in Cairo, President Sisi stated:

It is inconceivable that the ideology we sanctify should make our entire nation a source of concern, danger, killing, and destruction all over the world. It is inconceivable that this ideology… I am referring not to “religion,” but to “ideology” – the body of ideas and texts that we have sanctified in the course of centuries, to the point that challenging them has become very difficult.

It has reached the point that [this ideology] is hostile to the entire world. Is it conceivable that 1.6 billion [Muslims] would kill the world’s population of seven billion, so that they could live [on their own]? This is inconceivable…You cannot see things clearly when you are locked [in this ideology]. You must emerge from it and look from outside, in order to get closer to a truly enlightened ideology. You must oppose it with resolve. Let me say it again: We need to revolutionize our religion.

In a less-noticed interview with Der Spiegel in February of this year, President Sisi stated:

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

No, Hollywood. Islam Does Not have a PR Problem.

Ever since the savage attacks in France, our pencil-waving, cartoon-pixelating media and Islamic theologian body politic have gone on an Islamic charm offensive.

In the face of 24,935 jihadist attacks since Sept. 11, 2001, we are told over and over again that Islam, one of the world’s great religions, is peaceful and merely being distorted by misunderstanding violent extremists with no particular ideology.

Whether or not you believe this, in spite of Islam’s supremacist goals and history, Koran-endorsed strategic lying and deception by way of taqiyya, the totalitarian theopolitical doctrine of Shariah that compels the systematic persecution of women, gays and non-Muslims, the sermons of influential imams let alone the definition of Islam itself, “submission,” is besides the point and distracts us from the real issue at hand.

The real issue is that there are millions of Muslim jihadists, aiders, abettors and sympathizers in the world – including all throughout the West – working through means, overt and covert, violent and peaceful, to unite the world under the rule of Allah.

Not Islamophobia.

Not America’s support for Israel (pre-Obama at least).

Not drone strikes.

Not Abu Ghraib.

Not Guantanamo Bay.

Not a YouTube video.

Not a cartoon.

The fact that the largest casualties of jihadist savagery are Muslims, renders moot almost all of these points.

And the fact that only a small percentage of Muslims may be jihadists should give comfort to absolutely no one. If even 0.1 percent of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world are jihadists, aiders, abettors or sympathizers, then 1.6 million people seek to destroy Western civilization.

As borne out by the latest Pew poll on Muslim views on suicide bombings from July 2014, 0.1 percent would in fact be a shockingly low figure:

Screen Shot 2015-01-24 at 6.50.21 PM
One other data point that the folks in Hollywood or Washington, D.C. would prefer not be printed: As of 2013, after New York City, Dearborn, Michigan — with a population of under 100,000, and the largest percentage of Arab-Americans in the country — had the highest number of individuals classified as “known or suspected terrorists” by our government.

So it was with great consternation that I read an article in Variety that reflects so well why we are losing a war that only Islamic supremacists are fighting.

Behold:

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

Why America’s Foreign Policy Has Failed, From George W. Bush to Barack Obama, and the Antidote

America’s foreign policy is, and has been driven by fatally flawed, intellectually dishonest premises and principles for more than a decade.

As a result, since Sept. 11, 2001, our goals, tactics and strategies have ranged from wrong-headed though well intentioned, to wrong-headed and ill intentioned. If America continues to fundamentally misunderstand its enemies, let alone honestly define who they are, it risks losing its position as the world’s preeminent superpower, a calamity the likes of which may spell the end of Western civilization as we know it.

President George W. Bush’s crucial first mistake in this author’s view was declaring a “War On Terror.” In announcing that America was at war with a tactic — either due to a genuine inability to identify the enemy or out of political correctness so as to avoid having to identify a foe primarily animated by religion — President Bush’s rhetoric was incoherent at best and obfuscatory at worst.

President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush shake hands during the opening ceremony of the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas on April 25, 2013. (Getty Images)

President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush shake hands during the opening ceremony of the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas on April 25, 2013. (Getty Images) 

While designating members of the so-called “Axis-of-Evil” as our chief adversaries was closer to the mark, President Bush nonetheless failed to recognize or refused to acknowledge a central truth we continue to ignore: That we are the enemy of a transnational theopolitical Islamic supremacist ideology that knows no borders whose adherents serve as an ally of, and proxy for international powers with anti-Western designs.

In fact, President Bush explicitly disavowed the notion that there was a link between Islamic supremacism and the jihadist acts that it compels, arguing in the days following September 11 that Islam was a “religion of peace.”

We can debate the merits of this assertion by looking to the Koran and the hadith as well as the theological interpretations of these works by leading Islamic scholars, but this is merely an academic exercise. Whether or not we call Islam a religion of peace, more important is that while there may be millions of peaceful Muslims, there are also millions of believers who are either violent Islamic supremacists or their aiders, abettors and enablers.

The latter group seeks to unite the world under a caliphate governed by Shariah law. Corroborative data on Islamic views not only in the Middle East but in Europe and the United States is readily available for all those who wish to see it.

Bush and those who shaped his foreign policy believed that America could forcibly transform Islamic nations into peaceful liberal bastions, pushing Afghanistan and Iraq forward by hundreds of years in a decade.

Iraq President Saddam Hussein is shown in Baghdad in this Jan. 1991 file photo. State-run Iraqiya television says, Saturday morning, Dec. 30, 2006, that Saddam Hussein has been hanged. (AP Photo, file)

Iraq President Saddam Hussein is shown in Baghdad in this Jan. 1991 file photo. On Dec. 30, 2006, Saddam Hussein was hanged after being deposed by American military intervention. (AP Photo, file) 

The de-Ba’athification of Iraq was done without recognition of the theopolitical Islamic supremacist ideology that reigns supreme in much of the Middle East in general, and in Iraq in particular. It further undercut America’s strategic interest in having Iraq continue to serve as a strong counterweight to Iran, based on the Sunni/Shiite divide between the two nations.

Many of our efforts under former presidential envoy to Iraq Paul Bremer seem to have been undertaken without clear goals, realistic objectives or even sound tactics. Much of the activity on the ground appears to have been chiefly informed by political correctness. Militarily, our troops report being hamstrung by suicidal rules of engagement that gave the benefit of the doubt, and thus the upper hand to enemy combatants. Finally, and most fundamentally, this mission was undertaken without a clear exit strategy.

However noble the aims of those who supported such a policy, and however much blame President Barack Obama deserves for not consummating a status of forces agreement with Iraq upon our departure, nearly $2 trillion — and more importantly the lives of thousands — have been spent “winning” wars and losing the peace, establishing Shariah-compliant constitutional “democracies” in Afghanistan and Iraq, and little else.

Freeing majority Islamic nations from secular authoritarians in order to re-make them as liberal Western democracies, and thus “win the hearts and minds” of those with views anathema to ours sounds great in theory. Yet practice has proven less hospitable.

Under President Obama, America’s war has morphed, with national security leaders – including our commander in chief – intentionally downplaying the size and scope of the threats we face, and denying the true nature of those who pose them, with deadly consequences.

Continue reading at TheBlaze…

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén