Monday, November 30, 2015

Russian Media: Turkey Shot Down Warplane to Protect Its ISIS Oil Smuggling

Russia and Syria’s Assad regime say that Turkey shot down a Russian warplane along the Turkey-Syria border last week to protect a lucrative trade in oil smuggled from areas controlled by Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) terrorists. Read

Climate Summit Attracts So Many Leaders They’ll Deliver Statements in Two Venues at the Same Time

With so many world leaders flocking to Paris for the latest U.N. climate megaconference, the event planners are having to divide them into two groups for Monday’s day-long opening segment. Read

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

GOP Lawmaker: Cut Funding for UN Until It Defines Terrorism

In the aftermath of the Paris terror attacks, a Republican lawmaker has introduced legislation seeking to cut by one-tenth U.S. funding for the United Nations until the world body settles on a definition for terrorism. Read

Turkish-Backed Rebels Gun Down Parachuting Russian Pilot

An international row over Turkey’s shooting down of a Russian warplane along the border with Syria deepened late Tuesday, as Russia said a parachuting pilot was killed by “fire from the ground” before rebels inside Syria killed a Marine during a subsequent search-and-rescue mission. Read

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Trump on Waterboarding: It Works, But Even ‘If It Doesn’t Work, They Deserve It Anyway’

Republican presidential contender Donald Trump doubled down Monday night on his support for waterboarding terrorist suspects, saying the interrogation method worked – and even “if it doesn’t work, they deserve it anyway for what they’re doing to us.” Read

Iran’s Khamenei Accuses US of Supporting ISIS and Plotting to Dominate Region

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Tehran on Monday and, judging from a statement released by Khamenei’s office, the discussion was dominated by criticism of “the Americans.” Read

At UN, Israel Blamed for Spread of Terror Across the Region

Amid a wave of jihadist terrorism in France, Sinai, Lebanon and Mali, members of the United Nations met on Monday to focus on “Palestine,” with several speakers accusing Israel of fueling the violence across the region. Read

Monday, November 23, 2015

Obama: $3B for U.N. Climate Fund ‘A Smart Investment for Us to Make’

President Obama had an opportunity Sunday to respond to Republican senators’ threat to withhold the $3 billion he has pledged for the U.N. “Green Climate Fund” (GCF) unless any new climate agreement is presented to the Senate for ratification – but chose not to. Read

Russia Claims to be Bombing ISIS Ruthlessly; Obama Says US Still Doesn’t Know if Russians Are Onboard

The United States still doesn’t know whether Russia can “make the strategic adjustment” necessary for it to join the coalition against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL), President Obama said on Sunday. Read

Friday, November 20, 2015

Clinton: Repeating the Words ‘Radical Islamic Terrorism’ is a Distraction, Plays Into Terrorists’ Hands

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton pushed back Thursday against critics of her and others’ reluctance to use the term “Islamic terrorism,” calling it a “distraction” and saying that it gives terrorists “more standing than they deserve.” Read

Clinton Criticizes US Mideast Allies: ‘This Is Their Fight and They Need to Act Like It’

Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had some candid criticism Thursday for three Mideast allies, scolding Turkey for being overly focused on Kurdish extremism and not securing its border with Syria; and Saudi Arabia and Qatar for not doing enough to cut off terror funding or stop the exporting of radical ideology. Read

Clinton Differs With Administration on Syria No-Fly Zone, Arming the Kurds

Democrat Hillary Clinton in a speech Thursday set out several points of difference with the administration she once served in, including calls to enforce a no-fly zone in Syria and to bypass the Iraqi government, if necessary, and arm Kurdish fighters directly. Read

Russia Reports Three Waves of ‘Massive’ Strikes Against ISIS

The Russian military says it has carried out three days of “massive” missile and bomb strikes against Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) targets across northern Syria, after President Vladimir Putin early this week blamed terrorists for the air crash in Egypt that killed 224 people. Read

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Syrian Refugees Since Oct. 1: 346 Sunni Muslims, 5 Christians; 191 Males, 160 Females; 64 Men Ages 14 to 40

Since the beginning of fiscal year 2016, which began on Oct. 1, the United States has admitted 351 refugees from Syria, according to State Department Refugee Processing Center data. Read

Syrian Oil Tanker Drivers Warned Before US Bombs Fell

In a bid to deprive the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) of vital energy supplies and revenues, U.S. forces have for the first time bombed oil tankers in the Syrian desert, but only after dropping leaflets warning truck drivers – deemed to be non-combatants – to “get out of your trucks now and run away from them.” Read

One Day After Charlie Hebdo ‘Rationale’ Comments, Kerry Says Terror Attacks ‘Can Never be Rationalized’

Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday that terrorist attacks “can never be rationalized, and we can never allow them to be rationalized” – one day after saying there was a “rationale that you could attach yourself to” behind last January’s terrorist attack against staff of a magazine known for mocking Islam. Read

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

After Paris Attacks, Global Warming Activists May See Mass Events Canceled

Last Friday’s deadly terrorist attacks in Paris may force the cancelation of large public events linked to the upcoming U.N. climate conference – to the dismay of global warming activists who hoped to avoid that outcome. Read

Obama Mocks Republicans: ‘Now They’re Worried About 3-Year-Old [Refugee] Orphans’

President Obama ridiculed Republicans Wednesday for objecting to his Syrian refugee admission plans, saying some GOP presidential candidates vow to be tough on Russia and terrorists but are “scared of widows and orphans.” Read

Kerry: 'There Was...a Rationale You Could Attach Yourself to' in Terror Attack on Charlie Hebdo

Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday drew a distinction between Friday’s terror attacks in Paris and attacks last January that targeted a magazine known for its irreverent treatment of Islam, saying the most recent ones had no “rationale.” Read

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

So Far: Syrian Refugees in U.S. Include 2,098 Muslims, 53 Christians

President Obama said Monday that calls from some quarters for the U.S. to admit only Christian refugees from Syria were “shameful,” yet the reality is that today’s refugee system discriminates, not against Syrian Muslims, but against Christians and other non-Muslim minorities. Read

Syria Ceasefire Plan Faces Hurdles: What Constitutes Terrorism?

As part of a stepped-up initiative to resolve the Syrian conflict, a group of governments has asked Jordan to compile a list of terror groups operating there that will be exempt from a ceasefire, but conflicting views of what constitutes “terrorism” threatens to undermine the effort. Read

Monday, November 16, 2015

Hillary on Her ‘Empathize’ with Enemies Remark: It’s ‘Very Difficult’ When Dealing With Barbaric Groups Like ISIS

Challenged about past remarks on the need to “respect” and “empathize” with enemies, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Saturday night’s Democratic debate conceded it was “very difficult to put ourselves in others’ shoes” when those others were the likes of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Read

GOP Candidates Reject Obama's Refugee Plan: 'Lunacy,' 'Huge Mistake,' 'No Way to Vet'

The terror attacks in Paris have focused new attention on the issue of Syrian refugee admissions, with several Republican presidential candidates hardening opposition to President Obama’s decision to allow 10,000 of them to settle in the United States during the current fiscal year. Read

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Flashback: ISIS Terrorist Threatens to ‘Fill the Streets of Paris With Dead Bodies’

In a propaganda video clip posted online last July a French-speaking Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) terrorist threatened to “fill the streets of Paris with dead bodies.” Read

Silent and Calm, Terrorists With AK47s Fired Into the Crowd For ‘Ten Minutes, Ten Horrific Minutes’

France woke Saturday shaken by Europe’s greatest loss of life at the hands of Islamic terrorists since the Madrid bombing 11 years ago – at least 120 people killed in six evidently coordinated gun and bomb attacks over a three-hour period, including a horror scenario in which terrorists held concert-goers hostage, gunned down dozens and detonated explosive belts. Read

Friday, November 13, 2015

After Rare Reprimand at UN Rights Council, Venezuela’s Leader Hits Back at ‘Audacious Accusations’

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro lashed out Thursday at the top U.N. human rights official for questioning his socialist government’s record, suggesting the criticism was part of a broader attack by Venezuela’s “imperialist” enemies led by the United States. Read

No. 1 Sunni Terrorist Group, ISIS, Claims to Target No. 1 Shi’ite Terrorist Group, Hezbollah, in Beirut

The world’s most dangerous Sunni terrorist organization, Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), claimed responsibility Thursday for lethal suicide bombings in southern Beirut, a stronghold of the world’s leading Shi’ite terrorist organization, Hezbollah. Read

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Kerry: 'I Am Determined to Restore U.S. Funding to (Pro-Palestinian) UNESCO'

The United States was re-elected to the executive board of the U.N. Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization’s on Wednesday, despite having withheld funds from the organization for four years. Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated his determination to get Congress to relent and restore funding. Read

State Dep’t Refuses to Criticize E.U. Move to Label Products From 'Israeli Settlements'

Israel on Wednesday slammed the European Union for approving new guidelines for labeling products from Jewish settlements in disputed territories, with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu calling it “immoral” and questioning what he called a decision to “single out” Israel among the world’s many conflict areas. Read

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Christie’s Response to Beijing’s Cyberwarfare: Hack Back, Expose The Regime to the Chinese People

If China engages in cyberwarfare against the U.S., New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said on Tuesday, he as president would hit back so hard that “they’ll have some real fun in Beijing” as Chinese people learn from hacked data how the regime is spending their money. Read

Kerry: Keystone Shows U.S. Is ‘Willing to Make The Same Tough Choices’ on Climate It Wants From Others

Rejecting the Keystone XL oil pipeline application provided the Obama administration with the opportunity to prove that the U.S. was “willing to make the same tough choices that we advocate to the rest of the world” when it comes to climate change, Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday. Read

Fiorina Dings Trump: I’ve Also Met Putin, But ‘Not in a Green Room for a Show’

Donald Trump said during Tuesday’s GOP debate that he got to know Russian President Vladimir Putin “very well” when the two shared billing on a recent CBS “60 Minutes” program, but rival Carly Fiorina drew loud applause minutes later when she said, “I have met him as well – not in a green room for a show, but in a private meeting.” Read

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

New Effort to List Iran’s Revolutionary Guard As Terrorist Group Recalls Clinton-Obama Split in 2007

A renewed legislative push to have Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) designated as a “foreign terrorist organization” (FTO) returns a spotlight onto an issue which eight years ago split Hillary Clinton from her then-Senate colleagues Barack Obama, Joe Biden and John Kerry. Read

Sen. Cotton: Russian Doping Revelations No Surprise: ‘A KGB State Led by a KGB Spy’

Investigators’ findings of widespread cheating by Russian athletes in a state-supported doping program come as no surprise, given that “Russia is a KGB state led by a KGB spy,” Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) said Monday. Read

Monday, November 09, 2015

Russia Grumbles UNESCO Is Being ‘Politicized’ Over Kosovo, But Had No Qualms About ‘Palestine’

Russia has warned that the U.N. cultural agency UNESCO risks being “politicized” by voting Monday on membership for Kosovo, which is not a U.N. member state. But Moscow had no such qualms four years ago when UNESCO voted to admit “Palestine,” which not only is not a U.N. member state but does not even operate as a sovereign entity. Read

Carter: US Doesn’t Seek Conflict With Russia, But Will Defend its Interests and Allies

Russia seems intent on eroding the principles that have underpinned the international order for decades, and the United States, while not seeking conflict, will act to defend its interests and allies in the face of Moscow’s provocations, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said at the weekend. Read

Friday, November 06, 2015

Obama on Russian Plane Crash: ‘It is Certainly Possible That There Was a Bomb on Board’

President Obama said Thursday “it is certainly possible that there was a bomb on board” a Russian airliner that crashed in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula last weekend. Obama was speaking just hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin chided Britain’s prime minister for similar comments. Read

Sen. Mike Lee: Preempt Bid by ‘Smug’ Obama to Bypass Congress on Global Climate Deal

Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) is calling on Congress to make it clear to the Obama administration and foreign governments “that in America it’s the Congress, and not the president acting alone, that writes the checks.” Read

Thursday, November 05, 2015

Revealed: Iranian-Supplied, Armor-Piercing IEDs Killed At Least 196 US Troops in Iraq

Almost 200 American troops were killed by Iranian-supplied armor-penetrating weapons during the Iraq war, according to declassified Pentagon data reportedly made public for the first time on Wednesday. Read

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Timing of Historic China-Taiwan Meeting Seen Linked to Presidential Election

The presidents of China and Taiwan will make history when they meet in Singapore on Saturday, although it appears unlikely that Beijing will portray the encounter as a meeting between equals. Taiwan’s forthcoming elections may also be a factor in the timing. Read

In Repressive Uzbekistan, Kerry Talks About ‘Human Dimension’ Instead of ‘Human Rights’

Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday wrapped up a tour of Central Asian countries, appearing cautious at times not to offend some of the world’s most autocratic regimes by criticizing their human rights records. Read

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

DNI Clapper on ISIS' Ability to Shoot Down an Airliner: 'Unlikely, But I Wouldn’t Rule It Out'

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said Monday it was “unlikely” that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) would have the capability of shooting down an airliner, “but I wouldn’t rule it out.” Read

‘Satan’s Confessions’--Iran's Ayatollah Tells Obama to 'Awaken, Correct Your Mistakes'

Iran’s supreme leader has some new advice for the leader of the country which he calls “the great Satan” – correct the mistakes you are making in the Middle East today, as one of your successors will be sure to confess them in the future. Read

Obama: If You Can't Handle CNBC, Chinese and Russian Aren't Going to be Too Worried About You

President Obama mocked Republican presidential candidates on Monday night for complaining about the moderators in last week’s CNBC debate, saying, “If you can’t handle those guys, then I don’t think the Chinese and the Russians are going to be too worried about you.” Read

Monday, November 02, 2015

Kerry in Central Asia: American Democracy Is Not Perfect

Secretary of State John Kerry told an audience in a Central Asian country where differences over human rights have caused tensions that the U.S. promotes democracy not because “everything is perfect” in America, alluding to policing-related controversies and mass shootings. Read

Assad Regime: U.S. Intervention Must be Coordinated With Syria, or Will Violate UN Charter

Syria’s foreign minister said Sunday that any foreign intervention against terrorists inside the country should be coordinated with the Assad regime – or would contravene the principles of the U.N. Charter. Read

Ayatollah: America Is the Source of the Region’s Problems, Not the Solution

America is the primary cause of the problems in the Middle East, and not part of the solution, Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Sunday. Read