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Wednesday, May 05, 2021

The Genesis Prize is Bad for the Jews

By On May 05, 2021
When the Genesis Prize was created it was marketed as the “Jewish Nobel”. Considering the number of Jewish Laureates, the actual Nobel Prize is more Jewish than the Genesis Prize.

Even in the year of the pandemic, the Genesis Prize isn’t going to scientists or doctors, but keeps going to vapid anti-Israel celebrities and wealthy activists whose Jewishness is a genetic accident of chance, and who use the $1 million prize to fund leftist and anti-Israel causes.

So it was inevitable that Steven Spielberg would win the prize in 2021 and quickly direct it to black nationalist and leftist groups who loathe Israel and Jews.

On Spielberg’s list is Avodah, which has multiple personnel who overlap with the anti-Israel hate group IfNotNow. IfNotNow stages protests against Jewish community groups to pressure them to end support for Israel and embrace the Islamic terrorists trying to destroy the Jewish State.

Avodah New Orleans even came out in support of BDS.

Becca Lubow, Avodah's organizer was one of IfNotNow's activists who followed Democrat presidential candidates on the campaign trail to convince them to oppose Israel. and posed with Senator Bernie Sanders holding a banner reading, "Jews Against the Occupation".

When documentary filmmaker Ami Horowitz asked Lubow about Hamas, she refused, stating, “I have to be careful because I’m cognizant of consequences for certain things I could say.”

Is this Genesis’ idea of “inspiring Jews to connect to their heritage and to Israel”?

Avodah has its toes in the same pool of organizers as IfNotNow with personnel and volunteers like Rakhel Silverman, Hannach Recht, Leah Shefsky, Nina Bernstein, Rachel Brustein, and a number of others. Some, like Eliza Klein, went from JVP, which supports BDS, into Avodah.

Funding Avodah puts fungible money into the infrastructure of anti-Israel activism which is at odds with the Genesis Prize mission statement of support for Israel.

Also on Spielberg’s list is the Collaborative for Jewish Organizing, an umbrella group that includes Bend the Arc and the incredibly toxic Jews for Racial and Economic Justice which has denied Muslim antisemitism. Bend the Arc is backed by Soros’ son and run by a sex club dancer turned anti-Israel organizer. A board member of Bend the Arc has accused Jews of “sustaining white supremacy” and it’s intertwined with anti-Israel protest hate group IfNotNow.

As Tablet Magazine reported, Dove Kent, Bend the Arc's senior strategy officer and the former director of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, had co-founded an organization providing "coaching, training, culture and infrastructure support” to IfNotNow. Bend the Arc's digital organization manager is a member of IfNotNow's digital strategy team.

Carolina Jews for Justice, another member of the CJO umbrella group, includes Brandon Mond, "an active leader on the local and national level of IfNotNow" and Salem Pearce, a former director of organizing at the anti-Israel group T'ruah.

Alana Alpert, the co-founder of Detroit Jews for Justice, a CJO member, signed an IfNotNow letter claiming that accusations of antisemitism are being wielded against "progressives, especially Black and Palestinian progressives who criticize the Israeli government". Alpert has been a defender of Rep. Rashida Tlaib. Carin Mrotz, the head of Jewish Community Action, also in the JCO, signed the same IfNotNow letter, and has defended Rep. Ilhan Omar.

The Genesis Prize, created to "foster Jewish identity, inspire Jewish pride and strengthen the bond between Israel and the Diaspora" was instead aiding some of the worst anti-Israel groups.

None of this was surprising from Spielberg, who attends Sharon Brous’ anti-Israel temple and whose big Israeli project was Munich, an exercise in moral equivalence between Israel and the terrorists written by anti-Israel leftist Tony Kushner who had said Israel should not have existed.

But this sort of thing happens to the Genesis Prize more often than it should.

In 2018, Natalie Portman received the Genesis Prize for, as far as anyone could figure out, being of Jewish descent and being famous. Portman, formerly pro-Israel had turned against the Jewish State, and refused to even show up to accept the award.

“We have followed the recent news from Gaza with growing worry, and we are concerned that it is not appropriate to hold a ceremony given the government’s actions and the latest escalation,” Portman’s note allegedly said, using the royal ‘we’, to condemn Israel’s fight against Hamas.

In a follow-up statement, the mediocre leftist actress attacked Netanyahu and whined that “the mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities” was not in line with her values.

Portman’s values, which are up there with her acting, didn’t stop her from going to a film festival in Beijing two years earlier to promote her movie depicting Israel as a dysfunctional society.

Getting its honorees to even accept the awards has been a problem for the Genesis Prize.

The year before, the Genesis Prize had gone to Anish Kapoor, a leftist Indian artist from the UK who happened to have a Jewish mother, and whose art is as bad as his politics.

Kapoor had previously made headlines for his sculpture in Versailles titled, “the vagina of the queen” which consisted of a giant rusted steel pipe.

He's also defended antisemitic Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn by arguing, "you can be anti-Zionist and pro-Palestinian without being antisemitic" and ISIS, saying, "there’s an atmosphere of vilifying Muslims for having extreme views. If I was a young Muslim, would I feel angry enough to have joined ISIS? I would at least think about it.”

If your Jewish pride isn’t ‘kvelling’ enough yet, Kapoor responded to the Genesis Prize award by asking them to cancel the ceremony "while children are being killed with chemical and other horrible weapons on Israel’s doorstep.” By that he meant Syria, rather than Israel, and donated his prize money to Syrian refugees. Some of the money went to HIAS, which focuses on resettling Syrian Muslims in America while, in traditional leftist fashion, bashing Israel.

That’s about as good as it could have gone considering that Kapoor has been a vigorous defender of allowing ISIS bride Shamima Begum to return to the UK.

Genesis Prize laureates have hovered between the worthy, the awkward and the embarrassing.

As the first 'laureate', Michael Bloomberg, a billionaire wealthier than his honorees, gave the $1 million award, or 0.1% of what he spent on his failed presidential bid, to everything from Israeli smartphones for the disabled to installing energy efficient systems in Canadian houses. Michael Douglas, the second laureate, used the money to fund acceptance of interfaith marriage.

Two of the recipients, violinist Yitzchak Perlman, and Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky, donated their prizes to medical research and fighting disability and disease. Robert Kraft, the New England Patriots owner, created a foundation to fight antisemitism and BDS.

But despite some worthy honorees, the Genesis Prize misses more often than it hits. Its strategy of honoring celebrities who happen to be Jewish has backfired badly.

In 2021, the Genesis Prize had a shot at redemption. It could have honored Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, the UK’s former Chief Rabbi, a leading Jewish thinker and campaigner against antisemitism, who had passed away that year and whose death had been mourned by everyone from the British Royal Family to world leaders to Jewish communities around the world.

Instead, the Genesis Foundation decided to help Spielberg fund leftist anti-Israel activism.

Other finalists for the 2021 award, beyond Rabbi Sacks, included Barbara Streisand and Sacha Baron Cohen. Albert Bourla didn’t make the cut. The “Throw the Jew Down the Well” guy did. It didn’t occur to anyone at Genesis to consider Mikael Dolsten, Tal Zaks, or any of the Jewish scientists involved in fighting the pandemic, but Barbara Streisand was on the list.

Could there be a worse indictment of the misguided values of the Genesis Prize?

The Genesis Foundation claims that it has a vision of a "strong and vibrant Jewish people" that is "united in appreciation of Jewish values and support for the Jewish State." And that’s a noble vision that it might best fulfill by fundamentally rethinking everything it’s done and is doing.

Either that or it can best help Jews and Israel by closing up shop and going away.

The Jewish organizational world already has no shortage of vapid organizations that exist just to give celebrities awards while funding the non-profit industry that incubates leftist activists. But the Genesis Foundation has become especially egregious because it repeatedly violates its own claim to be helping Israel and the Jewish people by rewarding some of the worst actors.

In both senses of the word.

The Genesis Prize is not fulfilling its mission of “inspiring Jews to connect to their heritage and to Israel”, instead it’s become a third-rate awards show for anti-Israel lefty celebs who have to be cut a million dollar check in the hopes of even getting them to show up.

The ‘laureates’ are supposed to embody a commitment to Jewish values and Israel. Can anyone explain how Anish Kapoor fit that bill? Maybe ISIS and Jeremy Corbyn can help.

The Genesis Prize was created to make American Jews more pro-Israel. Instead it’s become just another American ‘foundation’ funneling cash to the organizations of the anti-Israel Left.

The Genesis Prize Committee lists only 5 members, two of them, including Elie Wiesel, are deceased. At the top is Morris Kahn, an Israeli billionaire and space pioneer, who has been funding much of Genesis, and Jill W. Smith, a "senior advisor to the chairman" whose bio boasts of helping fund Avodah which was created with seed funding from the UJA Federation.

The activists protesting Israel were routinely created by the infrastructure of federations.

If the Genesis Prize Foundation wants to exert a positive influence on American Jews, the first step is to stop funding the problem and start funding solutions. The alternative is to keep on writing big checks to lefty billionaires who will use them to create more anti-Israel activists.

And then Israel, America, and the world would be better off without the Genesis Prize.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Tuesday, May 04, 2021

CAIR and US Islamists Have a #MeToo Problem

By On May 04, 2021
First, Ahmad Saleem, a community organizer for CAIR in Florida, was busted after showing up to molest what he thought was a 12-year-old girl he had met over the internet. When Ahmad showed up in a car with a plate, "Invest in Children", the cops were waiting for him instead.

The son of Pakistani immigrants had headed up the local Muslim Students Association at the University of Central Florida before moving up the ranks at CAIR. Then it was off to prison.

Now it’s Hassan Shibly’s turn. The Syrian immigrant who headed up CAIR Florida was accused of assaulting his wife, threatening to kill her, and sexually harassing CAIR employees. Shibly was also accused of threatening some of his accusers, and trying to pay them off.

An NPR article noted that CAIR leaders had been aware of the accusations as far back as 2016 and that no action was taken. "CAIR National has a history of turning a blind eye to many incidents over the years, and the information is coming out. No NDA will save them from what's to come," a former CAIR employee tweeted.

A forum for CAIR victims on Instagram quickly filled up with stories of a CAIR chapter head who "was found to be sexually harassing a member of staff and other women also complained about his behavior" only to be protected by the local CAIR governing board, a CAIR leader grooming an employee into a sexual relationship, a CAIR leader using "his religious belief that men can have 4 wives to manipulate women into having affairs with him behind his legal wife's back", and a "lawsuit with an imam and a little girl."

This kind of thing happens a lot.

When the various Islamist groups set up by the Muslim Brotherhood and similar networks operate in this country, they use the laws of Sharia that they intend to impose on Americans.

Two years ago, Zia ul-Haque Sheikh, a former ISNA board member, and the Imam at the Islamic Center of Irving, was accused of sexually exploiting a 13-year-old girl. He allegedly tried to marry the girl, when she came of age, even though he already had two wives at the time.

Also at the Islamic Center of Irving, a security guard was accused of molesting a third-grader, and there was an incident of a foreign man kissing minors at the mosque.

Sheikh's accuser claimed that she had reported this to the president of the Islamic Center of Irving board, Nouman Ali Khan, who “discouraged her from sharing what she experienced because it would harm Sheikh’s reputation.”

Khan, an Islamic preacher and a Pakistani immigrant, had headed up the Bayyinah Academy before being accused of latching on to troubled women at Islamic events and then exploiting them. The Islamist cleric had frequently appeared at ISNA and other Islamist events, and had previously defended the Sharia practice of lashing those accused of immoral behavior.

Sheikh Usama Canon, the Islamic cleric who founded the Ta'leef Collective, had been a frequent speaker at CAIR and ISNA events, an instructor at the Islamist Zaytuna Institute, and an advisor to the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN).

Canon, a black convert to Islam turned preacher, was ousted after allegations of sexually inappropriate behavior that included grooming women. He still remains involved in various Islamic institutions and organizations including the Downtown Islamic Center of Chicago.

Muslim feminist activists insist that the answer is more female leadership, but Linda Sarsour, probably the most prominent female Muslim activist in America, was herself accused of enabling sexual harassment back when she was working at the Arab American Association.

“She oversaw an environment unsafe and abusive to women,” a former employee, who claimed to have been repeatedly groped, alleged.

The Islamist apples rarely fall far from the tree.

Tariq Ramadan, the grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, and probably the leading Islamist figure in the West, has been accused of raping a series of women.

Ramadan's alleged assaults took place in Washington D.C., in Paris, London, and major cities around the world. The victims who have come forward included a disabled convert to Islam and former teenage students: including one as young as 14 years old.

The disabled woman described meeting Ramadan after a conference on Islamophobia and Palestine before he beat her, raped her, and then urinated on her.

Abuses happen in all religions and among secular intellectuals, but Islam is unique in that its theology provides a license for sexual abuse. A number of the Muslim leaders caught in the #MeToo moment employed the toolbox of Sharia law to perpetrate their abuses. They used the legal fiction of “temporary marriages” to force women into illicit affairs and the codes of a religion whose founder married a 7-year-old girl and where children are married off well before they hit puberty to justify abusing underage girls. And the Islamist infrastructure around them, tapping into the Sharia demand for multiple witnesses to a rape charge, ignored their accusers.

Rape and sexual abuses can happen in a variety of settings, but Islam is uniquely built to justify and protect behaviors that are crimes in the United States, but normative in the Muslim world.

The #MeToo scandals of Islamism are just symptoms of the fundamental divide between two civilizations and their accompanying value systems. The Islamists had always intended to build a state within a state. And within their organizations and communities, the state within a state operates under Sharia law, with legal, but no moral accountability, to the United States.

After 9/11, America’s Islamists increasingly came to align with the Left. The unspoken conflict between Sharia and feminism has yet to explode out into the open because there is too much at stake for both sides. But the #MeToo scandals at CAIR and other Islamist groups are a fracture point between two ideologies that are hostile to America, but also to each other’s values.

The miniature clash of civilizations within the political infrastructure of multiculturalism is coming.

Islamists have injected their policy priorities, support for the Muslim Brotherhood, hostility to Israel, hijabization, and opposition to fighting terrorism, into the Left. But the Left has also injected its own values, including feminism, into the Islamist political infrastructure.

Leftists and Islamists allied in Egypt, Algeria and Iran, among many other places, to overthrow establishment governments, only to have those alliances come apart in blood and tyranny.

The American alliance between Islam and the Left may meet the same end.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Monday, May 03, 2021

Biden Picks Soros BDS Activist as Asst Secretary for Human Rights

By On May 03, 2021
When Airbnb began boycotting the homes of Jews living in those parts of Israel claimed by Islamic terrorists, the Jewish communities of the United States rallied against the dot com.

Sarah Margon however stood against the Jewish communities and with the Airbnb boycott.

“Airbnb to remove listings in Israeli settlements of occupied West Bank. Thanks @Airbnb for showing some good leadership here. Other companies should follow suit,” she tweeted.

“Airbnb is playing a role by supporting the settlement real estate infrastructure — they’re perpetuating an illegal activity,” Margon ranted. “There is no way for a company…to do business in the settlements without violating the laws of occupation.”

That’s the woman Biden picked as his Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

"Yesterday @Airbnb agreed to stop renting in the Israeli-occupied settlements," Margon argued. "Other companies should follow @Airbnb's lead."

BDS will now have a powerful ally within the Biden administration and the State Department.

Margon’s hatred for Israel was not surprising. The leftist extremist was heading up the Human Rights Watch office in Washington D.C. HRW has defended BDS and recently issued a report falsely accusing Israel of apartheid. Airbnb’s temporary surrender to BDS was an HRW project.

Sarah Margon was defending an HRW policy. HRW’s Deputy Director for the region had agreed in an interview that it was a crime for Jews to live anywhere in the West Bank. That same HRW official recently argued that the Biden administration should support the “right” to boycott Israel. Margon’s appointment would make that much more likely. So much for human rights.

Margon was active on social media “urging companies to pull out of the Israeli Settlements”, but her hatred for the Jewish State goes beyond an economic war of BDS in all its forms.

When Peter Beinart put out his infamous, “I No Longer Believe in a Jewish State” op-ed, Margon highlighted an excerpt calling for one state and the destruction of Israel.

“Peter Beinart on fire,” she cheered.

That’s Biden’s Assistant Secretary for Human Rights supporting the destruction of Israel.

Sarah Michelle Margon is one of a number of anti-Israel activists Biden picked including Maher Bitar, who was pictured dancing in a keffiyah in front of a banner reading, “Divest from Israel Apartheid” and is now Biden’s Senior Director for Intelligence on the National Security Council, and Hady Amr, who described being “inspired by the Palestinian intifada” and is now Biden’s point man on the conflict between Israel and the terrorists fighting to destroy the Jewish State.

Reema Dodin, Biden's Deputy White House Legislative Director, had argued that, “suicide bombers were the last resort of a desperate people.”

Margon’s selection isn’t surprising for an administration that appears determined to put a few moderates out front while packing the policy ranks full of anti-American and anti-Israel extremists. At one point Matt Duss, an ally of Margon, Bernie’s foreign policy advisor, and one of the more infamously anti-Israel figures in the echo chamber, was under consideration.

While Margon may not be up there with Duss, whom she’s praised and promoted, her attacks on Israel and opposition to Jewish civil rights was consistent. When she wasn’t attacking Israel, she was attacking the idea of protecting Jewish students from her anti-Israel collaborators.

When President Trump signed Executive Order 13899 on Combating Anti-Semitism at colleges, Margon complained that it "ostensibly addresses antisemitism. But in reality it's a bogus initiative geared to stifle free speech & go after those who might criticize Israel."

Margon’s hatred and hostility for the Jewish state were relentless.

As Hamas supporters rioted at Israel’s border fence with the terrorist statelet, a New York Times puff piece celebrated one of the rioters who was “screaming ‘Allahu akbar!’ and hurling stones”.

Sarah Margon tweeted a link to it with the comment, “Extra important read when the new US SecState comes out of the gate noting Israel has a right to defend itself.”

When the Obama administration stood against Israel, she tweeted, “Vote affirms illegality of settlements, longstanding US policy. Thank you @POTUS.”

Margon repeatedly complained that the United States was providing Israel with military equipment and falsely accused it of “exploiting COVID-19 & using it as a pretext for repression.”

“Such brutality & injustice rarely so stark,” she tweeted about a piece smearing Israel over casualties in Gaza.

After HRW, Sarah Margon joined one of George Soros’ Open Society Foundations as its director of foreign policy advocacy. The OSFs fund BDS groups and Soros, its backer, has blamed antisemitism on Jews and the “pro-Israel lobby”. "If we change that direction, then anti-Semitism also will diminish,” the extremist anti-Israel billionaire has argued.

"Despite what Giuliani wants you to think, being Jewish is not decided by political preference or how you live your life or how much you support Israel," Margon, who is of Jewish ancestry, had argued. But how you live your life does determine if you’re Jewish or not.

And part of that is opposing antisemitism and the murder of Jews.

A snapshot of Margon’s activism can be seen in her Twitter feed which shows her promoting attacks on Israel by HRW’s Abier Almasri who has defended terrorists. In one article promoted by Margon, Almasri described, “three military assaults Israel has launched during its armed conflicts with the Hamas-led Gaza authority since 2008”. Not Hamas terrorists: authority.

"Starting our day off right - visit to @RashidaTlaib," Margon tweeted in 2019 about accompanying Almasri to the militantly anti-Israel and pro-terrorist House member.

Included in the tweet was Omar Shakir, an HRW BDS activist, on whose behalf Margon had campaigned when Israel told him to leave. “Where is the US on the ouster of my colleague @OmarSShakir from Israel? Virtually silent, just like on the Israeli security forces’ disproportionate attacks on Palestinians in Gaza,” Margon complained in 2018.

But it wasn’t just the Islamic Jihadis trying to murder Jews who animated Margon’s activism.

When President Trump took out the head of ISIS and said, “he died like a dog”, Margon whined about his “aggressive language” which “can easily be used to recruit & radicalize.”

“US is illegally transferring foreign ISIS suspects from Syria to Iraq, leading to botched trials & torture,” another tweet complained.

All of this will have severe consequences for American soldiers who have come under fire from Sarah Margon before.

When Air Force pilots bombed an Afghan hospital that Taliban fighters had been using, Margon wrote a letter to Obama's Secretary of Defense on behalf of HRW demanding a "criminal investigation" and the "possible criminal liability of US personnel."

Our men and women in uniform, like the Israelis, have to watch out.

The Biden administration is coming for them.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Sunday, May 02, 2021

Did Colorado Mosques Influence Boulder Supermarket Shooter’s Jihad?

By On May 02, 2021
Last year, the Colorado suburb of Arvada passed a resolution to continue resettling refugees.

The municipality had already gotten a small taste of Islamic terror when one of its residents pled guilty to supporting ISIS six years ago. Shannon Conley, an American convert to Islam, was busted after she began attending services at the Faith Bible Chapel of Arvada while wearing a Burka. Worshipers noticed her taking notes and making sketches, and contacted the FBI.

Conley told the FBI, “if they think I’m a terrorist, I’ll give them something to think I am.” Authorities found videos of Al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki and other Jihadist material.

“Even though I supported a Jihad, it was never to hurt anyone,” she claimed in court.

Al-Awlaki, who attended Colorado State, headed its Muslim Students Association, and preached at the Denver Islamic Society, casts a long shadow over Colorado even after his death.

But Arvada really hit the big leagues of Islamic violence when a member of a large Syrian Muslim family went on a killing spree in a supermarket in Boulder, Colorado.

Ahmad Al-Issa’s massacre at a King Soopers supermarket claimed 10 lives. And it was one of a series of ugly incidents involving the Syrian Muslim who had a history of accusing non-Muslims of Islamophobia. One of his classmates was even violently assaulted by the Syrian immigrant who claimed that he had been called a terrorist.

In the latest development, Ahmad Al-Issa has been charged with not only 10 counts of murder, but 34 counts of attempted murder. His lawyers and the media have attempted to argue that he is mentally ill. That same argument was used in Shannon Conley’s case.

And that of countless Islamic terrorists.

Crazy or sane, the Al-Issa clan has been something less than a blessing to Colorado.

Ahmad’s older brother, Imad, had been arrested twice on weapons charges and the police were called during an altercation with his common law wife to whom he was married under Sharia law, but not American law. The woman in question has since passed away.

The Al-Issa clan had migrated to America from Raqqa, later the capital of ISIS, the year after September 11, and started out in Aurora. The Aurora council voted unanimously last year to continue resettling refugees. Aurora is a hub of the Muslim presence in Colorado.

Colorado’s Muslim population more than doubled in a decade and stands at an estimated 70,000. Much of that population comes from the same basic region as the Al-Issa clan.

The Colorado Muslims Community Center, the largest mosque in the state, is based out of Aurora. Its Imam, Karim Abuzaid, was compared by one Muslim to Anwar Al-Awlaki.

Al-Awlaki keeps coming up because the dead Al Qaeda leader had headed the Muslim Students Association at Colorado State which was a project of the Muslim Brotherhood. ICNA is entangled with the Brotherhood, and Abuzaid had appeared at ICNA events.

Colorado’s biggest mosque hosted the worst Islamists like Siraj Wahhaj, an unindicted co-conspirator in the World Trade Center bombing, who had told followers, “You don’t need nuclear weapons or even guns! If you have faith in Allah and a knife! If Allah wants you to win, you will win!” and “if 6-8 million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.”

Karim Abuzaid has delivered lectures urging Muslims to convince Americans to accept Sharia law, and defended Sharia punishments such as flogging and stoning. Videos of Abuzaid’s rants boast titles like, "Why EVERY Muslim Believes in SHARIAH & JIHAD".

"O Allah, make this Ummah follow the rightly guided way, in which the obedient people are honoured and the hypocrites and the infidels will be humiliated and the sinners will be exterminated," he had prayed at the mosque.

And he had promoted at least one Islamist text which urged "propagation of Islam or call to Islam until all countries embrace it and make it their way of life. If someone makes any obstacle in the way of propagation, Muslims are allowed by Allah to fight them until Islam becomes the governing authority." Last year he had declared that the Caliphate was coming back.

It’s unknown if the Al-Issa family had any connection to the Colorado Muslims Community Center, but considering its size and proximity, a half hour drive away from the Al-Issa family home, and Abuzaid’s prominence in the community, they very well might have utilized its facilities or listened to his hateful rants.

The Islamic Center of Golden, the closest mosque to the Al-Issa family home, features an ICNA booklet touting Sharia aimed at non-Muslims. It promotes a video by Imam Omar Suleiman who had celebrated terrorism, and defended the Sharia practices cutting off the hands of thieves and forcing women who had been captured in Islamic raids into a life of sex slavery.

“God willing on this blessed night as the 3rd Intifada begins, the beginning of the end of Zionism is here. May Allah help us overcome this monster, protect the innocent of the world, and accept the murdered as martyrs,” he had tweeted during Israel’s fight against Hamas terrorists.

Suleiman has also made it very clear that he’s a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Islamic Center of Golden also recommends books by Tariq Ramadan, the Islamist grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood who has been accused of sexually exploiting and abusing numerous women under the guise of Islamic law, Hamza Yusuf, a contraversial Islamist figure, and two books by Jonathan Brown, a Muslim convert who had defended Islamic slavery, arguing, “I don’t think it’s morally evil to own somebody.”

The Islamic Center also has an arrangement allowing it to collect a percentage of purchases made by its worshipers and supporters at King Soopers. The mosque is popular with college students, especially foreign students, and Ahmad Al-Issa, who later shot up a King Soopers, might have felt comfortable there among other young foreign Muslims around his own age.

What influence did this Islamist environment have on the Boulder supermarket killer?

Ahmad Al-Issa’s lawyer, his family, and the media have tried to claim that he’s suffering from some unspecified mental illness. And yet even the media’s reporting reveals a common thread of paranoia and hatred toward non-Muslims by the supermarket mass murderer.

Where did that come from? That’s a question no one is asking or is being allowed to ask.

Arvada, Aurora, and the other Colorado cities and jurisdictions that went all in on refugee resettlement have shown no willingness to question the poor decision they made in 2020. And as Biden tears open the refugee cap to maximize the open borders flow of terror immigrants to this country, there will be more massacres like the one at King Soopers.

Those officials who aided and abetted the disaster will work hard to shut down any questions.

Law enforcement and the media are currently fascinated by the “extremely large size” of Ahmad Al-Issi’s magazine while showing no interest in what motivated the Syrian immigrant to kill 10 Americans. The New York Times headlined its story about the Al-Issa clan as, “An Immigrant Family Caught Up in a Distinctly American Tragedy”.

But was it an American tragedy or a ‘distinctly’ Syrian tragedy for Americans?

As Biden dismantles the ban on travel from terror states and reopens the refugee resettlement machine, there will be many more tragedies in America made in Syria, Iraq, and Pakistan.

And no one will take a look at the environment of mosques and imams, listen to their hate and hear their predictions of an apocalyptic war between Islam and the rest of the world, and consider whether our refusal to see the war waged against us is the true ‘American Tragedy’.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Friday, April 30, 2021

The Fire Burns

By On April 30, 2021

 The circle of men whirls around the fire, hand in hand, hand catching hand, drawing in newcomers into the ring that races around and around in the growing darkness. A melody thumps through the speakers teetering unevenly with the bass, the sound is both old and new, a mix of the past and the present, like the participants in the dance, the traditional garments mixing with jeans and t-shirts until it is all a blur.

It is Lag BaOmer, an obscure holiday to most, even to those who come to the fires. The remnants of the Jewish Revolt against the might of the Roman Empire are remembered as days of deprivation in memory of the thousands of students dying in the war, until the thirty-third day of the Biblical Omer, part of the way between Passover and Shavuot, the day when Jerusalem was liberated.

Deprived of music for weeks, it rolls back in waves through speakers, from horns blown by children and a makeshift drum echoing an ancient celebration when men danced around fires and shot arrows into the air. The fires and bows have remained a part of Lag BaOmer, even when hardly anyone remembers the true reason for them.

The new Yom Yerushalayim, the day of the liberation of the city, is coming up soon,  but the old Yom Yerushalaim, came thousands of years ago and ten days before it on the calendar. Time is a wheel, and, like a circle, everything comes around again. Hands pulling on hands, years pulling on years, on and on like the orbits of planets and stars. The Divine Hand of G-d pulls us along, and we pull each other in the dance of life.

The circle speeds up, men racing faster and faster, the children left behind, as the flames sputter and night falls. The rebellion, although bravely fought, failed, and Jerusalem fell again, and then Betar. The joy of the celebration turned to ashes, but, even in the shadow of the empire, their spirit endured. The stories were changed a little, the rebellion encoded into a story of Rabbi Akiva, the pivotal scholarly figure in the war, and of his students who perished because they had not been able to get along with one another. The failure of unity had been the underlying reason for the Roman conquest and the Jewish defeats. It is the ancient lesson still unlearned that the circle of the dance teaches us.

Lag BaOmer is not the first Jewish story of physically and spiritual heroism to be encoded for fear of the enemy. There is much that we know, without knowing what it truly means, messages from the past, that exist only as echoes reminding us of our purpose. Few of those in the circle passing around the flame know what they are truly commemorating and yet the act is its own commemoration. Thousands of years later the echo of a fierce joy, the pride of a people emerging out of a momentary darkness in a burst of wild energy, is still here. Though the details are forgotten, the joy endures, the song is sung and the fire still burns.

In the darkness, there is nothing but the fire and the dark shapes racing around it, leaping with the guttering flames. A teenager pours oil on the flames and they rise higher and higher. A new song begins but they are all the same song. Even the new songs are old. The music changes, but the words remain the same. Arms rise and fall, feet kick and the participants run around the fire only to end up right back where they began.

Codemaking is a dangerous business, for the keys to the code can be forgotten. In Spain and in the American Southwest there are men and women who keep odd rituals, but who no longer remember that the reason they keep them is because they are descended from Jewish Conversos. They have lost the most important part of the code, the part that explains everything. The men dancing around the fire have not lost that. They may not remember the liberation of Jerusalem, but their feet remember it, their arms remember it, their hearts remember it and most of all they remember who they are. They retain the key to the entire code. They remember that they are Jews.

It all began with fire. Avraham was cast into the fire and emerged alive from the flames. Then Chananya, Mishael and Azariah. And then millions more turning to ash in the ovens only to rise again in a new generation. "Is not this man a brand plucked out of the fire," G-d asks Satan in the vision of the Prophet Zechariah. "But who may abide the day of his coming?" the Prophet Malachi says."And who shall stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner's fire."

A piece of heavy wood chars, bright sparks rising into the night air. It is cool outside the ring of fire, but here it is painfully hot, the air thick with heat. The children gaze wonderingly at the sparks, flying up like tiny stars, their eyes recording the memory with a purer fidelity than any of the cameras outside the circle. Their minds will record the memory of the light, the feel of it on their skin and the awe of seeing something new for the first time. They will remember the circle and the fire.

The story of Moloch is the tale of men who worshiped the fire with the bodies of their children. But the children who race around the margins of this fire are the survivors of the servants of Moloch who tried to thrust their grandfathers and great-grandfathers into the flames. They will grow running around the flames from those who wish to thrust them into the fire, to burn away all that they are. Some will die, killed by Muslim terrorists or by other modern day servants of Moloch, but others will survive, and one day their children will race around the flames, defying the worshipers of fire, the worshipers of death, to do their worst to them.

The fire blazes up, tongues of flame darting toward us like the tongues of lions. This is the race we run around the flames that always burn, whether we see them or not. Year after year, generation after generation, and century after century, the fire burns, but we go on and no matter how many of us burn, we continue running the race with the flames, outpacing it, outlasting it and outliving it. No matter how many of us die, we still live.

A Talmudic recollection bemoans the Zoroastrian persecutions of the Jews. The notion today is as quaint as Assyrian chariots and Roman legions. The day will come when the Islamic persecutions are as obscure and laughable. When all the desert sands have covered over Mecca and the might and power of Islam are one with Assyria and Rome, with ancient pagan religions that have come and gone, blazing brightly like the flames, only to go out into the darkness, the dance will continue.

The men slow their steps, an ancient movement that the first wave of settlers to the Holy Land instinctively recreated. Dancing is a key that unlocks secret knowledge, that opens up buried memories, that turns the wheel of time back until it all becomes a circle that comes alive when it is closed. Despite the tremendous variations in customs and appearances, they have all unlocked the code of the circle, the hand to hand connection, the knowledge that whatever else we must go on. That the Jewish people must live.

The Bar Kochba revolt was not the last time that Jews fought to liberate their land. It was not the last time that the gates of Jerusalem were thrown open to a Jewish army. The liberation of Jerusalem in 1967 was the fulfillment of a struggle that had been going on for nearly two thousand years, as empires and caliphates had claimed the land, planted their spears and rifles over its barren hills, and enforced their laws upon it. And if Jerusalem falls again, if Masada falls again, if we fall into the fire, then we will rise out of it again, less in number, less in memory, but still a circle.

Fresh from battle, the soldiers danced around the flames. They had defeated the legions of Rome, without any special training and with poor equipment, they had beaten the greatest army in the world. They had survived the flames and in an explosion of joy, they raced around the celebratory fires, tasting the momentary immortality of battle. Their names are forgotten, lost to memory. Lag BaOmer is associated now with two of Rome's scholarly opponents, Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, who passed on the teachings and traditions that kept the circle intact even in the fire.

Wars are won and lost all the time. No victory, however significant, endures forever. There is no immortality in the victories of the flesh, only in the triumphs of the spirit. For all our losses, this circle is a victory, an ancient celebration of a spiritual triumph kept secret in the face of the enemy. The circle of clasped hands reminds us that against the dead hand of history, we have a Living Hand that guides us even in our darkest hours, in the smoke and flame, in the ash and fire.

"Know that your descendants will be strangers in a land not their own," G-d tells Avraham, as the sun goes down, and amid a thick darkness, a smoking furnace and a flaming torches passes between the parted pieces of the covenant. There is smoke and fire, a thick darkness, but as each hand in the circle clasps another, the pieces are joined together into one. The unity will not last. But it is a reminder of who we can be and who we should be when we join together. A reminder of the covenant with G-d and with one another.

The dance is difficult, not because it is hard to learn or do, but because it is tiring. Some fall out of the circle, but others join in. It is a mistake to dwell too much on how many come and how many go. To count the losses, while overlooking the gains. We were never meant to be a numerous people, to swell to an empire, rotten with corruption, choking on its own grossness, until it dies. It is easier to win the race with the flames when you are small and light on your feet. Some tire of the race and leave, and fall into the flames or the darkness and are gone. But we go on. We always go on.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Cuomo Killed Thousands of Seniors and Lost a House Seat

By On April 29, 2021
Governor Andrew Cuomo is many things: a mass murderer, a sexual predator, and a sore loser.

Cuomo spent $70 million census outreach, but his horrifying policy of forcing nursing homes to accept patients infected with the coronavirus had killed untold thousands of New York seniors.

Now the census is done and New York is going to lose a House seat by 89 people.

“We’re looking at legal options, because when you’re talking about 89, that could be a minor mistake in counting,” Cuomo whined.

The ‘9’ is fitting because that’s the number of women who accused him of sexual harassment.

Maybe it’s a minor mistake like the time Cuomo’s aides rewrote a report to hide the real death toll in nursing homes as he was prepping his book on his brilliant leadership during the pandemic. A report by New York’s Attorney General Letita James estimated that the undercounting might have been as high as 50%. But minor mistakes do happen.

“We were in a position where we weren’t sure if what we were going to give to the Department of Justice, or what we give to you guys, what we start saying, was going to be used against us while we weren’t sure if there was going to be an investigation,” a Cuomo aide had argued.

Even 0.5% of the 15,000 nursing home patients dead on Cuomo’s watch might have saved the House seat. If Cuomo had been 0.5% less of a psychopath, New York might have kept its seat.

Sure, go look at your legal options. There was already a precedent on the subject for another whiny tyrant in the Book of Kings, "Would you murder and also inherit?" (1 Kings 21:19.)

New York not only lost a House seat, despite Cuomo’s attempt to bluster about his legal options, but it deserved to lose it. The state was already losing its population due to people fleeing Democrat mismanagement. Last year, New York was number one state in declining population losing over 126,000 people. In the last decade, the state’s population grew by 0.4 %.

But there’s a difference between taxing people into leaving and mass murdering them.

It’s the difference between socialism and national socialism.

Cuomo didn’t give a damn about the elderly with the exception of his mother. The equity grants for census outreach were littered with organizations like the Arab American Community Center for Economic and Social Services, Refugees Helping Refugees, Bangladeshi American Community Development, and the Yemeni American Merchants Association.

Elder Life got a $7,500 grant, while the Yemeni Merchants scored $30,000.

Cuomo’s sociopathy is a reflection of his party and political ideology which cares a great deal about identity politics, but can’t wait for the elderly to die off.

During the worst of the pandemic, Cuomo threw another $10 million at the census. If only he'd spent that money keeping nursing home patients alive. While the dead can be counted in Democrat elections, counting them for the census has proven to be trickier.

Handing out cash to community groups didn’t compensate for the people who were dying.

Cuomo, like every good Democrat, blamed New York’s poor numbers on President Trump, “You had undocumented people who were nervous to come forward,” he suggested, complaining that illegal aliens were being undercounted. “The federal government had a chilling effect.”

Democrats forced the citizenship question off the census. The only ‘chilling effect’ was in the morgues where the victims of Cuomocide were unable to fill out census forms.

President Trump is out of office, but Cuomo's statement still raved about the "Trump Administration's xenophobic, flagrant, and illegal efforts to hurt blue states by discouraging non-citizens and people of color from being counted" and vowed that, "we won't allow Trump and his cronies to use one of our greatest attributes -- our diversity -- as an impediment."

Despite Cuomo’s vocal enthusiasm for diversity, he only seems to have sexually harassed white women raising serious doubts about his belief in diversity. Until he sexually harasses as many illegal aliens as he does Americans, we can’t trust his commitment to diversity.

Cuomo then asked Attorney General Letitia James, who is already investigating his sexual harassment and nursing home deaths to do something about the census.

Maybe she would have more time to investigate the census, if she weren’t investigating Cuomo.

Challenging the results of tallies is an attack on democracy and the rule of law, except when Democrats do it because the numbers didn’t go their way, and Texas wins and New York loses.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, in his usual fashion, is blaming the whole mess on Cuomo, and raising questions about where that $70 million even went. That’s a good question. So is the question of where the $850 million for ThriveNYC mental health that De Blasio’s wife was managing went.

Meanwhile New York is enjoying a stunning 64% self-response rate.

Curiously though, responses appeared to drop sharply in more conservative upstate counties since 2010. Maybe a whole bunch of Republicans decided that there was no point in participating in an exercise which just empowers a one-party state operating out of Albany.

In Lewis County, which President Trump won, self-response rates dropped from 66% to 44%, in Jefferson County, they fell by 10%.

The issue wasn’t Cuomo’s beloved illegal aliens. 7 years ago, Cuomo had declared that there was no room for conservatives in New York. Did they take the political thug at his word?

Cuomo and his Democrats will do everything in their power to see that it’s a Republican House member who loses his seat, but that will just lead to lower response rates. A census is also an election and poor response rates are a vote of no-confidence in the system and political elites.

And just as with the pandemic, Cuomo is trying to blame the failure on everyone else.

After allocating $70 million, Cuomo still felt short by 89 people. That wouldn’t have happened if he hadn’t presided over massive political alienation and a record death toll in New York.

Throwing tens of thousands of dollars at Yemeni merchants isn’t fixing that.

New York, a state with, according to the census, a population of some 20 million, was responsible for as much as a tenth of the nation’s pandemic death toll. Stalin said, “A single death is a tragedy, a million deaths are a statistic.”

But the statistics are adding up and they’re not going Cuomo’s way.

Cuomo had responded to nursing home deaths by arguing, “Who cares [if they] died in the hospital, died in a nursing home? They died.”

Finally, after thousands died and 89 were missed in the census, he has a reason to care.

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

When the Only Way to Fight Racism Accusations is More Racism Accusations

By On April 28, 2021
When the San Francisco Board of Education decided to force admissions for Lowell High School to move from a merit system to a lottery, it was a declaration of war on Asian students.

The temporary pandemic shift to a lottery system had already plunged the number of Asian students at the elite high school by 4.4% to 51%. A permanent lottery system would, as an article put it, “better reflect the diversity of San Francisco”. And in San Francisco, where Asian students make up a third, not half the student body, that means another 15% have to go.

That means thousands of students being cut off from their dreams despite their hard work.

Lowell High School isn’t just any school. It’s a pipeline to the University of California, and to Ivy League colleges. Like its New York counterparts, like Stuyvesant, it’s a high-performing academic environment and part of the bargain between Asian parents and cities, ignoring the dysfunction of Democrat cities in exchange for an advanced educational pathway upward.

But it’s also been the subject of lawsuits and litigation for decades.

A 1983 NAACP lawsuit forced San Francisco to limit any ethnic group to only 40% of the student body. The federal consent decree was devastating to Asian students

“We knew that if we did not desegregate Lowell High School, the school would have been dominantly Asian and white," an official at the time claimed. Successful court battles by Asian parents in the 90s challenged the effort to suppress Asian admissions. And litigation associated with these battles continued on throughout the nineties and the oughts. Faced with a ban on racial quotas, the NAACP resorted to claiming systemic racism at the majority-minority school.

When the San Francisco School Board forced the lottery system to fight “pervasive systemic racism”, Asian parents didn’t just protest or sue, they dug up racist tweets by VP Alison Collins who had accused Asians of “white supremacist thinking” and called them, “house n___s”.

While Collins would have likely gotten away with her racist tweets at any other time, a wave of violent attacks on elderly Asian people in the Bay Area and New York City had become a civil rights issue, and racist rants about Asians, even from a minority official, were suddenly unwelcome. Collins refused to resign, but was stripped of her powers by her colleagues.

The events at a single high school in one of the wealthiest and bluest cities in America (Biden won 86% of the vote in San Francisco, after Hillary had won 84%) may not seem like they matter much to the rest of the country, but it’s also a lesson in the dog-eat-dog politics of cancel culture where the only way to counter accusations of racism is with more accusations of racism.

The battle against bigotry was supposed to make America a fairer place, instead it pits accusations of racism against each other in an arms race of callout culture. Some of Collins’ defenders are blaming her downfall on cancel culture even while ignoring the fact that she was one of the more enthusiastic proponents of it. The school board had canceled schools named after George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Paul Revere based on basic factual errors.

But the real issue is whether we can even define a concept of fairness outside of race.

"When we're talking about... meritocracy, especially meritocracy based on standardized testing, I'm just going to say it... those are racist systems," Collins had previously insisted. "If you're going to say that merit is fair, it's the antithesis of fair, and it's the antithesis of just."

If merit isn’t fair or just, then what’s left except claims of victimhood and racism?

And as the San Francisco School Board and Collins have discovered, that’s a knife that cuts both ways. The depressing alternative to merit is accusing your opponents of being bigots. And Asian parents in San Francisco have been forced to learn that lesson by the opponents of merit.

It’s also the lesson being taught to the Asian students of Lowell High School, who after a sustained campaign accusing them of racism, are now fighting back with accusations of racism.

A system based on merit teaches students to work harder, while a system based on cancel culture teaches them to spy on their classmates and wait for the perfect opportunity to twist the knife with incriminating screenshots of text messages before they can do it to you. Such caches of old chats going back to middle school are jealously hoarded until college admissions time comes around to be unleashed with the approval of college administrators and the media.

The fair and just alternative to merit is turning the educational system into East Germany.

Asian parents and students want the right to compete. The right of minorities to compete used to be the most basic premise of racial equality. Instead it’s been replaced with equity, with diversity quotas, and an endless deconstruction of the system and its imaginary systemic racism until there is nothing to compete for except claims of victimhood and accusations of racism.

Get rid of merit in admissions, eliminate standardized testing, then banish any conventional study of academic subjects with history, literature, science, and math all deemed to be suffering from systemic racism, and education is reduced to a game of “Spot the Racism”.

When merit is replaced with accusations of racism, then that becomes the purpose of education. Equity takes on math, science, and other subjects don’t enable students to do a better job of mastering these subjects. Instead they’re taught to deconstruct the systemic racism of any subject in the same facile ways with no pedagogical standards, only political ones.

Students subjected to equity math don’t learn what 2 + 2 equals: only that it’s racist.

Lowell High School is both a school and a symbol of what it takes to succeed in America. Revolutions of merit, like the American Revolution, are profoundly liberating because they unchain individuals to pursue their own destinies, while ideological revolutions, like those of France and Russia, provide access to opportunity and survival in exchange for dogma and denunciations. Cancel culture is just the current incarnation of the Salem Witch Trials, the Jacobins, and the Bolsheviks. Thriving and surviving means denouncing others first with the cycle of denunciations eventually destroying the denouncers and tearing down the system

Denunciation eventually ends at the guillotine. Just ask Robespierre or Collins.

The essence of anti-racism is universal guilt. If everyone is racist, then no one is truly innocent. It’s why the safest approach to being accused of racism is to plead guilty. It won’t save you, but it will demonstrate some understanding of the underlying dogma of the cultural revolution.

But universal guilt also means that everyone will eventually be canceled for 15 minutes. And that’s true in San Francisco where everyone is already on the way to being canceled.

Where merit holds out potential to everyone, cancel culture ultimately deprives everyone. The two approaches are on a collision course in San Francisco which incubates both a wealthy technocracy and a radical leftist ideology. And it forces Asian-Americans to protect the future of their children by meeting accusations of racism with more accusations of racism.

Asian students did not dominate Lowell High because of segregation or racism. They did so and still do because of hard work. A fair and just society rewards hard work. An unfair and unjust one teaches us to hate each other in order to get ahead. That’s become the San Francisco way.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Portland Fights 1000% Increase in Murders With Unarmed Park Rangers

By On April 27, 2021
Shootings have more than doubled in Portland from 111 last year to 275 so far this year. Murders are also up from 2 to 25. That’s an increase of over 1000% for the prog utopia.

Portland hit a quarter-century high last year with 55 murders. It’s on track for 100 in 2021.

Things are so bad that Mayor Wheeler, who narrowly won reelection over the Antifa candidate after having his apartment building firebombed, pleaded with the City Council to pay for more cops. But the City Council had a better idea: unarmed park rangers with pepper spray.

Wheeler had asked the Council for $2 million to put cops on the streets to stop the gunmen, but instead he’s getting $1.4 million to put unarmed park rangers to run from the gunmen.

Or try to take them on with the awesome power of their pepper spray.

Another $3.5 million will be tossed to the Council’s leftist “community group” allies.

“This proposal is the kind of collaborative problem solving I expected from our historically diverse council where the majority are grounded in community,” Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty boasted. The Portland City Council isn’t grounded: it’s high on its own insane leftist politics.

Hardesty is famous for three things: her calls for defunding the police, her calls to be made police commissioner, and her call to the police when she got into an argument with her Lyft driver because he wanted to keep the window open. Commissioner Hardesty didn’t call a park ranger when the Lyft driver asked her to leave his car, but everyone else is supposed to.

"Historically, one of the ways we’ve dealt with gun violence is to flood, frankly, Black neighborhoods with cops, often violating civil rights. This is not a strategy Portlanders are willing to carry into the 21st century,” Commissioner Mingus Mapps declared.

Meanwhile, bullets slammed into a children’s center at child level.

Mapps however explained that the Portland City Council was trying to reimagine public safety and criticised the failure to put all the stories of the shootings, “into the context of the broad and deep reforms that this council is trying to do around the issues of equity, race, and public safety.”

Portland’s reimagining of public safety is eliminating the safety part and replacing it with equity.

The City Council had eliminated the Portland Police’s Gun Violence Reduction Team leading to an even worse outbreak of mass shootings and refused Wheeler’s call to bring them back.

They also turned down a direct appeal from black residents and officials, including Pastor J.W. Matt Hennessee, the senior pastor of the Vancouver Avenue First Baptist Church, who reported being on a Zoom call when bullets began flying near his church.

"You could still smell the gunfire in the air and I talked with the police officers when they showed up," Pastor Hennessee recalled.

“If investments are not made, that just means more people are killed,” he warned.

The Portland NAACP however ranted that the police are racists who "maintain the blight of our communities, reinforces the racists stereotypes and tropes against Black people, and does nothing to repair the harm of generations of racism and white supremacy."

It’s hard to tell what’s worse, the NAACP’s spelling or its blatant disregard for human life.

"Instead of maintaining weapons of war," the NAACP statement said of the Portland police, "it can shift those funds into community-led solutions".

While the 24 new unarmed park rangers won’t have any “weapons of war”, like guns or any ability to defend themselves beyond calling the police to ask for help, they do have “de-escalation” and “anti-bias” training which should terrify any gang member.

A longtime park ranger however told a reporter that someone needed to tell the City Council that the rangers are not the police and “have less authority than a parking patrol attendant”.

A spokesman for one of the Council members proposed that the rangers would “be a calming influence”. Meanwhile a ranger explained that the only thing they can do is call the police or try to ban people from the park, but only if they provide their names and phone numbers.

A Portland Police Bureau bulletin shows how well the plan to replace cops with park rangers is working. The park rangers "approached a group about 9:00a.m., intending to distribute fliers informing the group that the park was going to be closed for restoration work. Graves threatened to kill them, and although they did not report being threatened with a weapon, Graves followed them yelling threats to kill them as they tried to disengage."

That was the de-escalation training, a favorite of pro-crime criminal justice reformers, in action.

"About 45 minutes later, another team of Park Rangers responded to a fire burning in the park, which is a violation of park rules. Park Rangers reported requesting assistance from Portland Police as they went to address the fire. Graves pulled out an axe and threatened the Rangers If they did not leave." And then the police finally had to step in to stop the aspiring axe murderer.

That’s how well replacing armed cops with unarmed park rangers works in the real world.

Meanwhile the bodies keeps piling up as Portland’s gang members and drug dealers rush to be the city’s hundredth murder victim or murderer, while their stray bullets take out random people walking down the street and hoping not to die because their city council puts criminals first.

Since the Portland City Council doesn’t want to fund the police, the FBI is stepping in to do it.

The Oregon FBI described Portland's situation as a "public safety crisis" and is offering to provide money and personnel. But why should the country’s taxpayers be on the hook for a calculated decision by the Portland City Council to turn their own city into a war zone?

Every single Portland commissioner is on record as opposing even Wheeler's modest plan to use police to fight the shootings. The voters elected to have leftist radicals run their city.

While it might be cruel, they should pay the price.

Portland Democrats decided to make their city into a laboratory for criminal justice reform. They’re keeping the dream of the 70s alive in Portland while reimagining public safety. The bodies of the murder victims are just experimental subjects in their pursuit of utopia.

“If this is not interrupted, this will be the deadliest year in Portland history,” Pastor Hennessee said at a press conference. “I don’t believe the City Council wants to have that kind of blood on its hands.”

Clearly it does. Portland’s City Council has seen the consequences and isn’t stopping.

There will be horrid lessons to learn from that, as there were from Soviet collective farms, Venezuelan economics, and the Khmer Rouge's resettlement programs. And those lessons need to be learned by other lefty cities trying the same experiment. And by Americans.

Portland voters can stop this insanity, just as they did when they ended up backing Wheeler over the Antifa candidate. If they choose not to, they have blood on their hands.

Radicals and extremists don’t change on their own. Their followers, supporters, and enablers have to see for themselves the horror that has been unleashed. It’s unknown how many dead bodies it will take for Portland voters to wake up and realize what they’ve done.

Horrifying shooting numbers in Chicago, Baltimore, or Detroit are ignored because most people have become inured to the violence in minority urban areas, but Portland, like Seattle, was reimagined as a hipster paradise for upwardly mobile artistes and lefty activists. Seeing it descend into hell while the hipsters who moved there for the culture and the vibe flee, abandoning underwater mortgages and vegan dog bakeries, may be a wake-up call.

Not just for Portland, but for New York, Los Angeles, and the rest of lefty urban America.

Meanwhile the unarmed park rangers will be on the front lines of fighting crime. Or running from axe-wielding maniacs as fast as they can manage.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Monday, April 26, 2021

Facebook Has a Private Army: Its Founders Want to Free Criminals

By On April 26, 2021
It was a love story made in the start-ups of San Francisco when Mike Krieger, the co-founder of Instagram, proposed to Kaitlyn Trigger, a former product manager at TaskRabbit.

Instagram is where celebrities go to post their vacation photos and TaskRabbit is the gig economy app where random people labor to perform menial tasks for a few bucks. While both of these apps are a blight on the world, it’s different for the wizards behind the curtain.

When Krieger, a Brazilian immigrant, married his TaskRabbit sweetheart, they went back to, what W Magazine described as an, “Art Deco house... in the Dolores Heights neighborhood of San Francisco, where Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, is a neighbor.” Zuckerberg’s Facebook had paid $1 billion for Instagram of which Krieger reportedly got $100 million.

What do you do when you have lots of money, but no purpose or meaning?

The Kriegers began to collect art of the sort that people with no taste and no concept of aesthetics, but ridiculous amounts of money, buy up to show off in magazine photo spreads.

Like matching wall safes in their wall that can’t be opened.

“There’s a clause in the contract that says if we open it, it’s no longer art,” Kaitlyn, photographed smirking at the camera, explained to the New York Times.

Also if you open up all the prisons, then no one is safe anymore except Big Tech executives because the other thing that the Kriegers decided to do with their free time was free criminals.

The happy tech couple founded the Future Justice Fund which funneled money into a variety of pro-crime groups and Democrat organizations. “Many ‘tough-on-crime’ policies actually erode public safety,” the organization falsely claims. Beneficiaries include Californians For Safety And Justice which is pushing to eliminate bail and legalize muggings by treating them as petty theft.

Shoplifting had already been legalized, but SB 82 would go further so that “taking the property from the person of another or from a commercial establishment by means of force or fear without the use of a deadly weapon or great bodily injury” would constitute petty theft.

Another beneficiary of the Big Tech couple’s Facebook cash is Reform LA Jails.

Reform LA Jails, formed by Patrisse Cullors, a co-founder of the racist hate group Black Lives Matter, worked to defund police through Measure J, and elect George Gascon, who has refused to prosecute criminals, ridiculed victims of violent crime, and unleashed a wave of terror.

While it was working to help criminals, Reform LA Jails also paid $191,000 to Cullors in 2019. That money probably enabled Cullors to afford her new $1.4 million house in Topanga Canyon.

It’s not enough money to move into an art deco mansion near Zuckerberg, but it’s a start.

Reform LA Jails was listed as being sponsored by the “Justice Team Network, A Project of Tides Advocacy”. The Justice Teams included Cullors, as well as Melina Abdullah, a BLM LA leader allied with Farrakhan whose hate rally had resulted in attacks on synagogues and Jewish businesses. Tides Advocacy appears to have poured at least $320,000 into Reform LA Jails.

$390,000 came from Patty Quillin, the wife of Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. Quillin was a major backer of Gascon, and funded campaigns for pro-crime measures. The Netflix power couple live in Santa Cruz, but they’re happy to finance the destruction of Los Angeles.

Jane Fonda threw in $5,000, but compared to tech money that was chump change.

Open Philanthropy pushed a $750,000 grant for Reform LA Jails' pro-crime measure. The organization is a project of Dustin Moskovitz, a Facebook co-founder, and his wife Cari Tuna, who live in Palo Alto, and the Kriegers, flush with Facebook's cash, were also involved.

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, has plowed a ton of cash into various pro-crime bids through the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative with $350 million going to the Justice Accelerator Fund.

Accelerating justice and freeing criminals is a process that starts far from the Zuckerberg manor.

The Zuckerberg estate in Dolores Park is protected by a 15-man security team who helped turn the area into what neighbors described as "nothing short of a fortress."

No one liked Casa Zuckerberg and its guards who park on the street in their silver SUVs, but matters escalated when William "Gordon" Kinzer, an accountant who used to live in the Dolores Heights area, before being priced out by tech titans, lost his home and became mentally ill.

Kinzer began sleeping at a friend’s house. Zuckerberg’s private army didn’t like Kinzer. Team Zuckerberg took out a restraining order against the homeless accountant, accusing him of being a racist. The restraining order left Kinzer actually homeless, forcing him to sleep in his car.

"I was concerned for my safety," one of Zuck's guards claimed about the disabled accountant.

When Kinzer violated the restraining order, he was arrested.

Only a Big Tech billionaire’s lawyers could make a disabled man homeless and then arrest him while making it look like a win for social justice.

“You’re just a slave. How does it feel to work for a thug?” Kinzer was alleged to have asked.

It’s a valid question.

“I’ve been trying to present them with a message: No one is above the law,” Kinzer argued.

But that’s the whole point. Some people are above the law because they make the laws.

The Facebook CEO's security operation isn't a private matter. The guards are part of the company's massive security force with 6,000 personnel, some of whose thugs come from Pinkerton, while its intelligence unit spies on its employees, its users, and everyone else.

Facebook’s Chief Security Officer is a former CIA agent. Its Global Security Operations Center has three operational hubs, and monitors Zuckerberg’s home and top employees, while Its BOLO watchlist appears to track even those who speak badly about the CEO.

Since Facebook’s apps are on most phones, sometimes voluntarily and sometimes embedded forcibly by companies as part of a deal with the social media monopoly, the company’s security force is able to track much of the population of the country by using its own apps.

One former employee called Facebook's security machine “very Big Brother-esque.”

That’s why Facebook employees who spoke to reporters off the record would make a point of turning off their phones.

Big Tech security teams are one of the industry’s best-kept secrets. Staffed by former military, intel and cops, they’re armed, relentless, and ruthless. Behind the dot com playgrounds for young Ivy League engineers supplied with toys and snacks are the men in black who are there to make sure that they don’t leak any secrets or defect with them to Silicon Valley rivals.

While Facebook’s bigwigs talk about reimagining public safety for the rest of us, they like the current system just fine when it comes to protecting their wealth, their power, and their persons.

Zuckerberg has a team of 70 armed guards led by one of Biden's former Secret Service agents. When he goes anywhere, his security team shows up beforehand to check it out before letting him go inside. Undercover armed guards disguised to look like Facebook workers even surround him to keep him safe from a possible attack by his own employees at the office.

There's a secret route to get him out during an attack and bulletproof glass to keep him safe.

Facebook has 1,000 security officers in the Bay Area alone. The San Francisco Police Department has less than 2,000 police officers. Facebook’s force is half the size of the SFPD.

Menlo Park, where Facebook’s headquarters is located, has only 48 police officers, but the social media giant funded the creation of a ‘Facebook Unit’ police substation and provided over $11 million to assign a team of specific police officers to protect its headquarters.

Facebook’s “public-private partnership” had paid for its own police force with arrest powers.

This is public safety reimagined for the elites. Everyone else gets George Gascon and police defunding. We get riots in the streets, smashed windows, and looted stores while Facebook and its top executives get a private police force half the size of the real one. We get junkies, crazies, and thugs roaming the streets, beating, raping, and killing, while anyone who even annoys a Zuckerberg guard will be hit with restraining orders and then arrested in a flash.

The cries of the victims of pro-crime policies can’t be heard in the mansions of Palo Alto, in the tech fortresses of San Francisco, and through the screen of private guards and drones.

Big Tech execs want us to reimagine public safety. Armed guards for them, crime for us.

Instead, let’s imagine we all had the same safety they do. All we have to do is turn back the clock a decade before Big Tech megadonors trashed the justice system and the police.

And then we can all be as safe from crime and criminals as Mark Zuckerberg.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Earth Day is Killing Us

By On April 25, 2021
Grouches complain that a lot of fake holidays are created by companies, but Earth Day is actually a fake holiday created by a sharp Madison Avenue ad agency, and the name comes to us from the same guy who coined, “Timex: It takes a licking and keeps on ticking".

The Earth takes a licking much better than Timex watches, but it’s the job of ad agencies to convince us that consumer products are permanent, while the world is ephemeral.

Madison Avenue supplied the name, but Senator Gaylord Nelson, the eugenicist Democrat, had come up with the idea for the event. Gaylord’s Earth Day kickoff hit a bump when Indians showed up and threw garbage on the stage to protest his environmental plan to seize their land for a national park. But the media excised this inconvenient truth from Earth Day history.

Real inconvenient truths don’t appear in Al Gore’s documentaries.

It was 1970. Nixon’s Vietnamization was underway and the Left, sensing that its antiwar protests had a limited future, was looking to build a new movement. The idea came from Gaylord, the name came from Madison Avenue, but the culture war needed young radicals to organize, show up, protest, and tell their parents that they wanted Democrats running America forever.

That’s where Ira Einhorn, a young radical, who co-founded Earth Day and acted as the master of ceremonies at its first rally, came in. Einhorn had started out as an anti-war activist, but like Gaylord and other Democrats, he could see that the anti-war publicity machine was going away.

Everyone from politicians to ad agencies to aspiring gurus like Einhorn was looking for the next big cultural phenomenon that would speak to the narcissism of the luckiest generation in history. Einhorn realized that civil rights and anti-war rallies were getting old. The future was a new environmentalism that would make the old environmentalist eugenics look cool and hip.

Einhorn ended up committing totally by killing his girlfriend and composting her body. Then he fled to Europe where the same lefty activist network went on protecting him from prison.

Happy Earth Day.

Earth Day didn’t do anything for the environment except make a huge mess. Parade floats filled with garbage were used to warn about pollution. Students chalked messages on the street. Everyone drove out in cars for Earth Day to warn about the dangers of driving cars.

Gaylord’s Earth Day speech was revealing of what environmentalism was and wasn’t.

"Environment is all of America and its problems. It is rats in the ghetto. It is a hungry child in a land of affluence. It is housing that is not worthy of the name; neighborhoods not fit to inhabit. Environment is a problem perpetuated by the expenditure of billions a year on the Vietnam War," Gaylord rambled.

Environmentalism was everything and nothing. It was every Democrat agenda rolled into one. It was the welfare state and the anti-war movement.

If the Democrats were going to run on it, then it was environmentalism.

And if they weren’t, then it wasn’t.

At no time in his speech did Gaylord address any actual environmental problem. Instead he focused on urban blight, caused by his own party, and shamed Americans for their prosperity.

“Our goal is a new American ethic that sets new standards for progress, emphasizing human dignity and well being rather than an endless parade of technology that produces more gadgets, more waste, more pollution,” Gaylord insisted, invoking the faux spirituality already in vogue.

Finally he declared an "environmental war" to save America's cities that would only take "$20 to $25 billion more a year in federal money than we are spending or asking for now."

Joe Biden, who first ran for office that year, wants to spend $174 billion on just electric cars.

The endless war on the environment is starting to cost more than any actual war.

Billions have been spent with little to show for it except more cash in the pockets of environmentalist Democrats like Al Gore who built a $300 million fortune with his advocacy.

The planet is no better and no worse off since 1970. The same isn’t true of America.

In 1970, 62% of aggregate income went to the middle class. Today it's only 29%. The winners of the environmental economic war on Americans were the upper crust Earth Day crowd.

There are more gadgets than ever, but fewer Americans can afford them.

Environmentalist policies helped push jobs out to China while leaving American cities and towns barren. There are more rats in the ghettos and housing not worthy of its name than ever before.

The current big objective of the environmentalist movement and the Biden administration is to crush coal while taking another huge bite out of the remnants of the American middle class.

“Secretary Kerry trying to equate the job of an electrician in a coal mine who makes $110,000 to a solar tech, who might make $35,000 to $40,000, is not a good analogy for our state," Senator Shelley Moore Capito argued.

But it’s a great analogy if you’re trying to turn more of the middle class into the lower class.

Jimmy Carter made Denis Hayes, a key organizer of Earth Day, the director of the Federal Solar Energy Research Institute. Hayes had an undergraduate degree in history from Stanford. Despite never having a degree in anything science related, he became a visiting professor at Stanford's School of Engineering and the CEO of Earth Day. He remains a board member of Earth Day alongside such notables as the President of Finland, the head of the Wells Fargo Foundation, and a woman whose bio lists her as an “internationally renowned chef.”

The Earth Day store offers "premium organic" t-shirts urging "Make Every Day Earth Day" for $28 bucks "Far out, man! This classic tie-dye T-shirt is bringing the 60’s back in style," the ad copy declares. The details mention that the actual fabric is imported. You can guess from where.

The same goes for the rest of the expensive junk in the Earth Day store.

In 1970, there were 18 million manufacturing jobs in the United States. Today there are 12 million and that’s after a period of record growth under President Trump.

China has built a manufacturing empire. It happily celebrates Earth Day because every advent of the fake Madison Avenue headline means more American jobs and dollars headed its way.

Earth Day, according to Senator Gaylord Nelson, was supposed to address poverty in America. Instead Earth Day has been the biggest machine for creating poverty, hunger, and misery in America. Environmentalism didn’t fight poverty, it spread it, trading American jobs and social mobility for the smugness of upper class students seeking a new political fight after Vietnam.

As much as the anti-war movement hurt America, the environmental movement did worse.

Almost as many Americans kill themselves in one year as died in the entire Vietnam War. The suicide rate shot up 35% in the last twenty years.

Losing America was much worse than losing Vietnam.

Every Earth Day comes with the usual recitation of political dogma with which children are indoctrinated before they can even read. On one side are piles of trash and on the other side are whales and polar bears happily dancing arm-in-fluke. The truth is that on one side there are Ivy League colleges and environmentalist think tanks while on the other side there is the Rust Belt, there are millions of Americans without jobs and without hope, and millions more waiting to see if the Biden administration will take away their jobs, their homes, and their futures.

The wages of Earth Day are ‘Love Canals’ all over America with dying towns, workers permanently out of work, dying of meth, committing suicide in unprecedented numbers.

Earth Day is America’s Chernobyl, an environmentalist catastrophe that is killing us. And Earth Day has destroyed more of America than any environmental catastrophe ever could.

It’s time to end the great hoax from Madison Avenue, from a brutal killer and a political hack, before it destroys what’s left of America.

Kill Earth Day before it kills America.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.



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