Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Netanyahu: Militant Islam Aims to ‘Dominate World;’ State Dept.: 'No' It Doesn't

The Obama administration does not share Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s view that the forces of militant Islam, whether Sunni or Shi’ite, have in common an ultimate goal “to dominate the world,” a State Department spokeswoman said Monday. Read

Netanyahu Slams Abbas for Genocide Accusations, 'Lies About the Holocaust'

Addressing the United Nations on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu hit back at Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who used the same podium last week to accuse Israel of a “new war of genocide” during its recent offensive against Hamas in Gaza. Read

Chinese Gov’t Mouthpiece: Hong Kong Protests Won’t Spread to Mainland

A Chinese state media outlet on Tuesday expressed confidence that growing street protests in Hong Kong, triggered by what demonstrators view as yet another broken democratization pledge, would spread to mainland cities. Read

Monday, September 29, 2014

Turkey Edges Towards Joining Anti-ISIS Coalition, But Insists on No-Fly Zone

After displaying reluctance to join an international coalition against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) terrorists, Turkey is now signaling its readiness to do so, but first it wants a no-fly zone over Syrian airspace and a buffer zone on the Syrian side of the Syria-Turkey border – neither of which are priorities for the U.S. Defense Department. Read

Terrorists in Syria Threaten Attacks Against Citizens of ‘Crusader Alliance’

While U.S.-led airstrikes on terrorists in Syria and Iraq are largely targeting the group calling itself Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), the leader of al-Qaeda’s Syria affiliate sent a message to the West Sunday: Don’t discount us. Read

Boehner: US May ‘Have No Choice’ About Boots on Ground in Syria, Iraq

House Speaker John Boehner said Sunday the U.S. may ultimately “have no choice” but to send combat troops to take on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), contending that relying on airstrikes will not be enough to defeat the terrorists. Read

Friday, September 26, 2014

Iran’s President: Calling Islamic State Islamic is Part of Western ‘Islamophobic Project’

Iranian President Hasan Rouhani accused Western media Thursday of deliberately trying to vilify Islam by identifying Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) terrorists as Muslims. Read

At UN, Kerry Credits Himself and Obama, but Not Bush, on AIDS Relief Effort

Even some of his harshest critics agreed that President George W. Bush’s initiative to tackle HIV/Aids was a major achievement, but when Secretary of State John Kerry addressed a U.N. meeting on the topic in New York Thursday, he gave no credit to his 2004 presidential campaign rival, touting instead the contributions of the U.S. Senate and of President Obama. Read

Admiral: ISIS Has Drawn ‘About 1,000’ Recruits from Asia-Pacific, Lured by Social Media

The U.S. military believes around one thousand aspiring jihadists from the Asia-Pacific region have traveled to join Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), with most recruited via social media. Read

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Venezuela’s President, Eyeing Security Council Seat, Channels Chavez by Blasting US ‘Empire’

He didn’t call the U.S. president “the devil,” but Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro struck a familiar tone at the United Nations Wednesday, delivering a rambling speech criticizing the American “empire” and its approach to world affairs. Read

Senior State Dep’t Official Praises Karzai, Avoids Criticizing His Parting Anti-US Comments

A senior State Department official sidestepped an opportunity Wednesday to respond to outgoing Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s parting charge that his country continues to experience conflict because “America pursued its own interests and did not want peace in Afghanistan.” Read

Cameron: To Defeat ISIS We Must Also Defeat Ideology Peddled by Muslim ‘Preachers of Hate’

To defeat the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), the international community must also “defeat its ideology in all its forms,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Wednesday, calling for the world view promoted by radical clerics to be challenged. Read

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

‘The World Is United,’ Obama Tells 5 Arab Partners Who Joined Attack on ISIS

President Obama on Tuesday thanked representatives of the five Arab nations that took part in Monday night’s U.S.-led airstrikes against terrorists in Syria “for their participation and commitment to rolling back the violent extremism that has so disrupted Iraq and Syria and threatens the region as a whole.” Read

Don’t Forget Terrorists in Libya, Saudi Foreign Minister Warns

At a high-level counterterrorism meeting in New York Tuesday held after the U.S.-led military action against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister appealed for a wider focus in what he called the “war on terrorism,” notably referring to Libya. Read

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Kerry on Climate Change: Don't Take My Word--Or Al Gore's

Climate change may be “the most serious challenge we face on the planet,” Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday, saying people don’t need to accept his or Al Gore’s or the U.N.’s word on the matter – just “listen to Mother Nature, who is screaming at us about it.” Read

Syria Claims US Informed its UN Envoy in Advance of Airstrikes

Syrian state media reported early Tuesday that the United States informed the regime’s ambassador to the United Nations of plans to launch attacks overnight against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) targets in Syria. Read

US, Arab Partners Attack Terrorists in Syria; Cite 'Imminent Attack Plotting Against U.S.'

Widening its campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), the United States, joined by five Arab states, launched air and missile attacks against terrorist targets in northern Syria for the first time on Monday night. Read

Monday, September 22, 2014

Kerry: There is a Role for Iran in the Anti-ISIS Effort

Secretary of State John Kerry met one-on-one with his Iranian counterpart in New York on Sunday, amid further softening in the administration’s approach to Iran in the face of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) threat. Read

Iran Blames US, Israel for Rise of ISIS; Syria Blames Saudi Wahhabism

During a U.N. Security Council ministerial-level debate chaired by Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday, the Iranian delegate tried to blame the United States and Israel for the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL). Read

Tony Blair: Defeat ISIS, But Also Address Those Who Partly Share Fanatics' World View

In confronting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), the international community is not simply facing a small “fringe of crazy people, a sort of weird cult confined to a few fanatics,” former British Prime Minister Tony Blair wrote in a major essay published Monday. Read

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Left-Wing Party In New Zealand Eyes Asylum for Edward Snowden

A small left-wing party in New Zealand says it will work to offer the former NSA contractor and fugitive from U.S. justice Edward Snowden asylum in the country if it forms part of a new coalition government following elections on Saturday. Read

Kerry to Code Pink: ‘ISIL is Killing and Raping and Mutilating Women’

Secretary of State John Kerry told Code Pink protestors who disrupted a congressional hearing Wednesday he respected their right to protest but they should “stop and think about how you stop” a terrorist group that “is killing and raping and mutilating women.” Read

Australia Uncovers Alleged ISIS Beheading Plot

Australian security services launched a major counterterror operation Thursday after uncovering what appears to have been a plot by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) to film the beheadings of random victims in Australia as a gruesome publicity exercise. Read

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Russia: ‘Free Syrian Army No Longer Exists’; Rebels Are Coordinating With Terrorists

Russia on Tuesday accused the West of ignoring its warnings about the growing terrorist threat in Syria, and claimed that the moderate rebel front – the one the Obama administration wants to arm as part of its anti-ISIS strategy – “no longer exists.” Read

Royce: In Supporting Syrian Rebels, US Should Not Play Assad’s Game

As the U.S. moves towards equipping Syrian rebels to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) it should not “play his [Syrian President Bashar Assad’s] game,” House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Rep. Ed Royce said Tuesday, noting that the opposition forces which the U.S. will be supporting are fighting both the terrorists and the regime. Read

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Obama Sending U.S. Military to Liberia -- to Fight Ebola

An anticipated announcement by President Obama on Tuesday to send up to 3,000 military personnel to West Africa as part of a boosted effort to combat Ebola comes a week after Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, in a personal appeal, said that without more direct U.S. help, “we will lose this battle.” Read

Kerry on the Anti-ISIS Coalition: It’s Not Just About Airstrikes

Secretary of State John Kerry voiced frustration Monday about the media’s focus on which countries are prepared to carry out armed attacks against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), saying the coalition being built by the administration is about much more than airstrikes. Read

WH Won’t Name Willing Military Partners, But Says Anti-ISIS Coalition Is ‘Coming Together Very Nicely’

White House press secretary Josh Earnest repeatedly declined Monday to identify countries that are prepared to use military force as part of a broad campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), but he maintained that the coalition being built against the jihadist group was “coming together very nicely.” Read

Monday, September 15, 2014

Australia First to Offer Troops as Anti-ISIS Coalition is Slow to Take Shape

Arab and European countries have yet to state publicly what military contributions they may make to the coalition against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), which Secretary of State John Kerry is cobbling together, but Australia showed no such reluctance Sunday, announcing that troops and aircraft will be deployed to the Middle East within days. Read

Egypt: Don’t Limit Action to ISIS; Islamists Elsewhere Share its Ideology

During Secretary of State John Kerry’s weekend visit to Cairo, his Egyptian counterpart pushed for the new international focus on countering terrorism to go beyond Syria and Iraq, arguing that the same ideology espoused by the jihadists there is driving other Islamist extremists, including those in Egypt’s neighboring territories. Read

Friday, September 12, 2014

Kerry in a Huff: Don’t Blame Me For the State of Iraqi Army

Secretary of State John Kerry was quick to distance himself Thursday from past U.S. efforts to establish a competent Iraqi army, reminding a journalist that he had opposed the war there. Read

Turkey Won’t Sign Anti-ISIS Pledge, But U.S. Calls It ‘Close Counterterrorism Partner’

Secretary of State John Kerry headed to Turkey Friday for talks on the campaign against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), after Turkey refused to join the U.S. and 10 Arab states in endorsing orchestrated action against the terrorist group. Read

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Kerry: ISIS Trying to Spread ‘Dangerous…Offensive…Insulting Distortion of Islam’

The ideology which Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) is trying to spread through the Middle East is a “dangerous … offensive … insulting distortion of Islam,” Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday. Read

Kerry: No Room in Anti-ISIS Coalition for Iran: They’re ‘On Their Own’

Secretary of State John Kerry said this week that “almost every single country on earth has a role to play” in the coalition being built against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), but on Wednesday he signaled that there is no room in the initiative for Iran. Read

CAIR Wants Obama to Distinguish Islamic State From Islam

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) wants President Obama in his speech on ISIS Wednesday night to reject the jihadists’ “misappro-priation of Islamic terms and concepts,” and to recognize that the terrorist group was created by “the lack of freedom and justice in the region.” Read

Obama: Islamic State 'Is Not Islamic'

President Obama laid out a four-part strategy Wednesday night to “degrade and ultimately destroy” the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), saying he will not hesitate to extend airstrikes to Syria. Read

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Massive Blast Eliminates Leadership of Prominent Syrian Islamist Rebel Group

A large explosion in northwestern Syria reportedly has wiped out the leadership of Ahrar al-Sham, a prominent Islamist rebel group which experts say has ties to al-Qaeda but also cooperated at times with the mainstream Free Syrian Army. Read

Senior Saudi Official: Linking Islam to 9/11 Boosted Support for Terrorists

Attempts to link the 9/11 terror attacks to Islam had the effect of winning terrorist groups more supporters and sympathizers, a Saudi newspaper has quoted an adviser to King Abdullah as saying. Read

Russia Signals Its Intention to Admit Iran to Asian Security Bloc

Iran has been trying for years to get into an Eurasian security bloc sometimes described as a regional counterweight to the U.S. and NATO, and now Russia – amid the most serious tensions with the West since the Cold War – could use its upcoming stint at the helm of the group to speed up Iran’s admission. Read

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Obama’s Foreign Policy Approval Rating Falls to All-Time Low

President Obama’s approval ratings for handling of foreign affairs has fallen to an all-time low in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, which also showed a significant jump in support for airstrikes against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) jihadists in Iraq. Read

Kerry: Anti-ISIS Coalition Aims to Demolish 'The Distortion of One of the World’s Great Peaceful Religions’

“Almost every single country on earth has a role to play” in tackling the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday, listing potential contributions ranging from military action to “demolishing the distortion of one of the world’s great peaceful religions.” Read

Turkey Wary About Anti-ISIS Campaign

Turkey is the only Islamic country currently identified by the administration as part of a “core coalition” against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), but as Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel visited Ankara Monday for talks on the threat some Turkish officials voiced misgivings about the initiative. Read

Monday, September 08, 2014

Hagel Again Assures Georgia of Eventual NATO Membership

Visiting Georgia Sunday after a NATO summit where the former Soviet country once again saw its membership aspirations acknowledged but not formally approved, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel assured his hosts that the U.S. will help Georgia to fulfil its goal of membership. Read

Arab States Voice Support for Tackling ISIS, But Will They Fight?

Arab foreign ministers meeting in Cairo Sunday expressed support for efforts to confront the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) group but stopped short of directly offering military personnel or assets to do so in either Iraq or Syria. Read

Friday, September 05, 2014

Dutch Politician: ‘If You Are Waving an ISIS flag You Are Waving an Exit Ticket. Leave!’

A Dutch lawmaker once put on trial for his views on Islam called Thursday for Dutch Muslims supportive of groups like the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS/ISIL) to leave the country and never be allowed to return. Read

Issa: My Resolution Requires Obama to 'Promptly Communicate' Plan to Combat ISIS

Congress’ summer recess ends on Monday and lawmakers plan to waste no time in challenging the administration over its approach to the threat posed by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS/ISIL). Read

Thursday, September 04, 2014

British PM: Time For Countries to Keep Their Pledges Not to Pay Ransom to Terrorists

On the eve of a NATO summit where the ISIS terrorist threat will share center stage with the Ukraine crisis, British Prime Minister David Cameron expressed frustration that some governments continue to pay ransom to terrorists holding their citizens, despite commitments not to do so. Read

Al-Qaeda Announces New Affiliate in India; A Response to ISIS?

In what may be its most significant response yet to the global attention being enjoyed by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS/ISIL), al-Qaeda has launched a new affiliate – on the Indian subcontinent. Read

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Hot and Getting Hotter? UN Agency Presents ‘Imaginary But Realistic’ Weather Forecasts for 2050

In a fresh effort to generate fervor for a far-reaching new global climate agreement, a U.N. agency is releasing videos featuring “imaginary but realistic” weather reports set in 2050, to illustrate the type of extreme conditions it predicts we will face by mid-century. But ... Read

Is US ‘At War’ With ISIS? State’s Psaki: ‘I’m Not Going to Put New Labels On It’

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki acknowledged Tuesday that President Obama was acting under “war powers” legislation in authorizing airstrikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS/ISIL), but declined to say that the U.S. was “at war” with the group. Read

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Poll: 46% of Republicans Say US Does Too Little to Address Global Problems

In just nine months, the percentage of Republicans saying the United States does too little to address global problems has more than doubled, while the proportion saying it does too much has dropped significantly, according to a new Pew Research Center poll. Read

British PM Plans to Seize Passports, Block Returning Jihadists

Weeks before President Obama hosts a special U.N. Security Council meeting on foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq, British Prime Minister David Cameron has announced new steps aimed at combating the threat they pose to countries of origin on their return from the region. Read

ISIS Publication Aims to Lure Recruits; Justifies Atrocities by Citing Mohammed

The latest propaganda publication by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) is clearly designed to lure more recruits from Western countries, portraying an idealized picture of a band of “strangers from the East and the West,” drawn together despite national and ethnic differences, in common allegiance to one leader and one sacred cause. Read