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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Friday, April 03, 2015
No Easter Without Good Friday
by Norm Beznoska Jr., Contributing Author: The road to Calvary and the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ spanned a period of less than 24 hours from the time of the Last Supper, the Jewish Passover meal on Thursday evening, to Friday afternoon at 3:00 PM when Jesus breathed his last. But, the story of His death and resurrection still echoes down the hill side of Jerusalem throughout history. His story is just ‘alive today’ as it was when it happened at the place of the skull, ‘Golgotha’ in Jerusalem, some 2000 years ago.
Preceding His crucifixion, Jesus suffered hours of unimaginable torture; facial beatings at the hands of Temple guards in the sham courtroom of Caiaphas; brutal scourging ordered by Pilate, by two Roman soldiers with flagrums of nine leather thongs fitted with lead balls and sharp pieces of bone, that caused over 240 deep lacerations from the back of His neck to the soles of His feet, leaving a mutilated mass of torn muscle and hanging flesh; and a tremendous loss of blood causing hypovolemic shock. To further mock and humiliate Him, Roman soldiers fastened a “Crown of Thorns” with branches (from a wild hawthorn bush with long, sharp, hard thorns) to cover His entire scalp. The thorns penetrated the skin, and were driven more and more deeply into his head when He was struck repeatedly. A comedy of mock adoration was played out as the Romans and crowd yelled, roaring with laughter: “Hail, King of the Jews!” Yet, Jesus uttered no rebuke and accepted their vile treatment without response.
Carrying the heavy wooden cross opened severe wounds on His shoulders and more bleeding; He fell three times, breaking His nose, so breathing became almost impossible. Reaching His destination with the help of Simon the Cyrenean, He fell atop His cross. His arms were literally pulled out of their sockets by Roman soldiers to match the holes 9-inch nails would be driven through His wrists and ankles to hold Him fast to the cross. His executioners and the Scribes and Pharisees expected Him to cry and scream from the excruciating pain. They were sure the same man who preached “love your enemies’, and “do good to those who hurt you” would forget His own words and curse them. What they got instead, was “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” Forgive the very people who hate and are trying to kill you? Honestly, there’s no way I could.
Then, in that final, terrible moment when He was dying on the cross, taking on all the sins of the world, Jesus cried out like we do when we feel a sense of abandonment: “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken me?” Questions I have asked “If God is so loving, why is there so much evil? Why didn’t He answer my prayers? Why did God take my Mother after weeks of suffering before she could her me say “I love you” one last time? Why? Jesus stands at the door and knocks, but the latch is on the inside; only we can open it.
For the last three hours on that “Good Friday’, Jesus had been about His Father’s business. His passion and death avail us nothing unless we take up our cross and follow Him. Unless there is a ‘Crown of Thorns’, there will never be a glorified body; unless there is the thirst, there will never be the Heavenly refreshment. Jesus work is finished, but is ours? For unless there is a “Good Friday’ in our lives, there will never be an Easter Sunday.
--------------------------- Norm Beznoska Jr., aka Navyman Norm, is a Strongsville, OH resident . He contributes to the ARRA News Service via articles and Letters to the Editor. Editor's Note: Norm provided this excellent article last in 2014 and it is being shared again on this Good Friday - 2015. Tags:Easter, Good Friday, Norm Beznoska, Navyman Norm,To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Inspector General (IG) John Roth described the improper favoritism shown to several Democrats including the brother of Hillary Clinton, Sen. Harry Reid, and Virginian Gov. Terry McAuliffe, the former Democratic National Committee chairman during the Clinton administration.
The former governor and Hayes showed up at the Knott Landfill southeast of Bend in a pickup and an SUV about 2 p.m. last Friday and spent a few minutes dumping trash, according to Timm Schimke, the director of the Deschutes County Solid Waste Department….
(W)orkers recognized who they were dealing with and apparently decided the dumping might be of interest to law enforcement. Kitzhaber and Hayes are targets of a federal investigation.Positively translucent. And of course this is as much a federal government problem as it is an Oregon one.New Cover Oregon Allegations: ‘If It’s True, Someone’s Going to Prison’
Early in its life, Cover Oregon was given a $48 million “early innovator” grant from the federal government. That amount would later grow to $59 million.
There were a few strings attached.
To keep the money flowing, the website would have to hit specific benchmarks between 2011 and 2013. The state needed to show the feds it had picked a company to provide software and technical assistance; it had to demonstrate that the website was safe from hackers; and, most importantly, it had to show that people could actually sign up for insurance on the website.Either the Obama Administration dropped the ball over and over and over again – or it simply allowed a fellow Democrat to run wild with hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars.
Regardless, the investigations must press forward. Of Mrs. Clinton – and both ObamaCare messes. In Oregon and D.C.
Truth, transparency and anti-cronyism are all being eviscerated. And like all political fish – this one is rotting from the head of state.
Start with the Obama Administration – and work your way down.
---------------- Seton Motley is the President of Less Government and he contributes to ARRA News Service. Please feel free to follow him him on Twitter / Facebook. Tags:Seton Motley, Less Government, Hillary Clinton, Wiped Server, Democrats Love Truth and Transparency, Loathe Cronyism, Who Are We kiddingTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Tags:Iran Nuke Deal, US, John Kerry, Suicide Pact, editorial Cartoon, AF BrancoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Alan Caruba, Contributing Author: “The American people have spent 30 years and $15 billion to determine whether Yucca Mountain would be a safe repository for our nation’s civilian and defense-related nuclear waste.” That’s a quote of Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) reported in the April issue of The Heartland Institute’s Environment & Climate News.
Compare that with the one year and 45 days it took to build the Empire State Building or the five years it took to build the Hoover Dam in the depths of the Great Depression. In the first half of the last century, Americans knew how to get things done, but the rise of environmentalism in the latter half, starting around the 1970s, has increased the cost and time of any construction anywhere in the U.S. In the case of Yucca Mountain it has raised issues about nuclear waste that is currently stored is less secure conditions.
As reported by CNS News in January, “The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has released the final two volumes of a five-volume safety report that concludes that Nevada’s Yucca Mountain meets all of its technical and safety requirements for the disposal of highly radioactive nuclear waste.” Five volumes!
So why the delay? The NRC says the Department of Energy “‘has not met certain land and water rights requirements’ and that other environmental and regulatory hurdles remain.”
A Wall Street Journal editorial on March 30 asserted that It is not about environmental and regulatory hurdles. It is about a deal that Nevada Senator Harry Reid, the former Senate Majority Leader, cut with President Obama to keep Yucca Mountain from ever opening for use. In return, Reid blocked nearly all amendments to legislation to shield Obama from having to veto bills. He virtually nullified the Senate as a functioning element of our government.
“Since there is no permanent disposal facility, spent fuel from the nation’s nuclear reactors—‘enough to fill a football field 17 meters deep’ according to a 2012 Government Accountability Office report—is currently being stored at dozens of above-ground sites. The GAO expects the amount of radioactive waste to double to 140,000 by 2055 when all of the currently operating nuclear reactors are retired.”
The United States where the development of nuclear fission and its use to generate electrical energy occurred is now well behind other nations that have built nuclear facilities and are adding new ones. As Donn Dear, an energy expert with Power For USA, points out “there are only four new nuclear power plants under construction, all by Toshiba-Westinghouse LLC. One other plant, Watts Bar 2, whose construction was held up for several years, is being completed by TVA.”
Meanwhile, as Dear notes, “South Korea is building four nuclear reactors in the United Arab Emirates. The Russian company, Rosatom, is building power plants in Turkey, Belarus, Vietnam, and elsewhere. The China National Nuclear Corporation is scheduled to build over twenty nuclear power plants.”
These represent jobs and orders for equipment that are not occurring in the United States, along with the failure to utilize nuclear energy to provide the growing need for electricity here. The same environmental organizations opposing construction here are the same ones supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s attack on coal-fired electrical plants. The irony is, of course, that nuclear plants do not produce carbon dioxide emissions that the Greens blame for the non-existent “global warming”, not called “climate change.”
A cynical and false propaganda campaign has been waged against nuclear energy in the U.S., mostly notably with the Hollywood film, “The China Syndrome” about a reactor meltdown. If you want to worry about radiation, worry about the Sun. It is a major source. Three incidents, Three Mile Island in 1979 and Chernobyl in 1986, added to the fears, but no one was harmed by the Three Mile Island event and Chernobyl was an avoidable accident.
More recent was the March 11, 2011 shutdown of the Fukushima reactor in Japan as the result of an earthquake and subsequent tsunami. Three of its cores melted in the first three days, but there have been no deaths or radiation sickness attributed to this event. That’s the part you’re not told about.
In the end, all it takes is one ignorant President to set progress back for decades. In this case it was President Jimmy Carter for not allowing reprocessing of nuclear waste, a standard practice in France where only one-fifth of spent fuel requires storage. In the 1980s there were three U.S. corporations leading the way on the introduction and use of nuclear energy to produce electrical power; General Electric, Westinghouse Electric, and Babcock & Wilcox. Today only Babcock-Wilcox continues as a fully owned American company.
Thanks to President Obama, we have lost another six years on the Yucca Mountain project. That fits with his refusal to permit the Keystone XL pipeline. No energy project that might actually benefit America will ever see his signature.
Some are arguing that America is a nation in decline and they can surely point to the near destruction of our nuclear energy industry as one example. That decline can begin to end in 2017 with the inauguration of a new President.
----------------- Alan Caruba is a writer by profession; has authored several books, and writes a daily column, Warning Signs He is a contribution author on the ARRA News Service. Tags:failure to Store Nuclear Waste, Nuclear Power plants, Harry Reid, Barack Obama, Jimmy Carter, Warning Signs, Alan CarubaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Democrat U.S. Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey has been formally indicted on 14 counts of public corruption charges by a federal grand jury. According to American Commitment, "Menwndez has been responsible for a lot of sketchy behavior involving his eye doctor friend Salomon Melgen, including a $500,000,000 contract putting Dr. Melgen in charge of port security for the Dominican Republic."
According to ABC News, Sen. Menendez said he's "outraged" by federal corruption charges he's facing stemming from his interactions with a Florida eye doctor. "For nearly three years, I’ve lived under a Justice Department cloud, and today, I’m outraged that this cloud has not been lifted," Menendez said at a news conference in Newark, New Jersey, Wednesday night. "I am confident at the end of the day I will be vindicated."
Todd Stern, climate envoy to the
UN, is reassuring nations on
Pres. Obama agreement.
On Tuesday, President Obama without approval of Congress gave a written pledge to the UN. The New York Times reported, "Mr. Obama said the United States would cut its emissions by 26 to 28 percent by 2025. . . . freezing construction of new coal-fired power plants, increasing the fuel economy of vehicles and plugging methane leaks from oil and gas production. . . . At the heart of the plan are ambitious but politically contentious Environmental Protection Agency regulations meant to drastically cut planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions from the nation’s cars and coal-fired power plants. The plan also relies on a speedy timetable, which assumes that Mr. Obama’s administration will issue and begin enacting all such regulations before he leaves office.
"We can achieve this goal using laws that are already on the books, and it will be in place by the time the president leaves office,” said Brian C. Deese, Mr. Obama’s senior adviser on climate change."
The AP wrote yesterday, “The United States put forth its contribution Tuesday to a global climate treaty, relying entirely on a set of emission cuts ordered by President Barack Obama that may not survive beyond the end of his presidency. . . .
“In its written pledge, known to climate negotiators as an Intended Nationally Determined Contribution, the U.S. did not offer an exact formula for how it would achieve the remaining reductions. Yet it pointed to an array of steps Obama has taken or is taking to curb emissions. Obama has ordered higher fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks, methane limits for energy production, cuts in federal government emissions and unprecedented pollution rules for new and existing power plants.
“Many of those steps have drawn the ire of some Democrats and almost all Republicans — not to mention the energy industry. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has been urging U.S. states not to comply with Obama’s power plant rules, and argued that the U.S. could never meet Obama’s target even if those rules do survive.
“‘Considering that two-thirds of the U.S. federal government hasn't even signed off on the Clean Power Plan and 13 states have already pledged to fight it, our international partners should proceed with caution before entering into a binding, unattainable deal,’ McConnell said.”
Reuters elaborated on the objections to the administration’s regulations: “The Obama administration's plan for U.N. climate change talks encountered swift opposition after its release Tuesday, with Republican leaders warning other countries to ‘proceed with caution’ in negotiations with Washington because any deal could be later undone. . . . Republican critics say the administration lacks the political and legal backing to commit the United States to an international agreement. . . .
“[E]lements of the administration's climate policy already face legal challenges. On April 16, a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. will hear arguments from 13 states opposed to as-yet-unfinalized regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that target emissions in existing power plants. . . .
“Some observers said that resistance to the administration's climate policies leaves foreign governments questioning whether Obama's commitments can last. ‘By strenuously invoking EPA regulations, the Administration is trying to convince skeptical international audiences that the U.S. can actually deliver on its new climate goals, despite Republican resistance,’ said Paul Bledsoe, a former Clinton White House official who is now with the German Marshall Fund of the United States. ‘But major capitals are likely to remain nervous.’ . . .
“Jeff Holmstead, a lawyer representing utilities industries for Bracewell & Giuliani and former assistant administrator of the EPA under George W Bush, says even if the courts uphold the EPA proposal on power plants, a future Republican administration can reverse it. ‘There are some EPA rules that are very difficult for a new administration to change but this is not one of those rules,’ Holmstead said. He calculates that at least five high court justices are wary of the EPA's regulatory leeway.”
Several groups wrote to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell yesterday to applaud his “work with state governors and legislators to push back against the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) usurpation of state electricity policy through its proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP).” In the letter, the groups wrote that “federal and state officials are right to question the CPP’s legality and the repercussions that would result from submission of a State Implementation Plan”… and that it is “appropriate for Congress, the branch of government charged with keeping the Executive in check, to help states fully understand the obligations and consequences flowing from obscure federal regulations. After all, Congress wrote the laws the EPA is using to justify the CPP.”
They added, “Given that the current administration has decided to circumvent Congress and achieve the same ends via regulatory fiat, you and other Members of Congress, elected by the People, should do everything possible to prevent unelected EPA bureaucrats from dictating national energy policy.” Tags:U.S. Senator, Bob Menendez, New Jersey, formally indicted, 14 counts, public corruption charges. President Obama, Climate change agreement, without Congress, freezing construction, new coal-fired power plants, increasing the fuel economy of vehicles, plugging methane leaks, oil and gas productionTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Bergdahl left his post and was held captive by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network in Afghanistan from June 2009 until May 2014. The circumstances surrounding Bergdahl’s disappearance and subsequent capture have become the subject of intense controversy. He was released on May 31, 2014, as part of a prisoner exchange by the Obama administration for five Taliban terrorist leaders who were held at the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Judicial Watch filed the lawsuit after the DOD failed to comply with a FOIA request submitted on October 22, 2014, asking for:Any and all records of communications, including by not limited to, emails and text messages, from or to (as either a direct recipient, “Cc” or Bcc”) Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and the following members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; the Military Service Chiefs of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps; and the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, regarding, concerning, or related to the ‘initial report’ of the Army’s review of the disappearance of Bowe Bergdahl from his post and his subsequent capture by Taliban forces. The time frame of the records sought is September 1, 2014 to October 28, 2014.The prisoner exchange by the Obama administration has also been the subject of intense controversy. The Government Accountability Office found that the Obama administration violated “clear and unambiguous” law in the prisoner swap. The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014 says that all prisoner transfers from Guantanamo Bay require 30 days’ notice to Congress. Such notice was not provided in Bergdahl’s case.
This is the latest in a series of lawsuits filed by Judicial Watch concerning the controversial prisoner exchange for Bergdahl. On November 18, 2014, Judicial Watch filed lawsuits against the U.S. Departments of Defense and State to obtain records concerning arrangements made between the U.S. government with third parties or other states regarding agreements and monetary payments to secure the release of Bergdahl from captivity in Afghanistan. On January 2, 2015, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against the U.S. State Department seeking access to the bilateral Memorandum of Understanding between the U.S. and Qatar relating to the terrorist release.
The Army’s fact-finding investigation concluded in December, but the Obama administration withheld the results from the public. Despite today’s announcement that Bergdahl would be charged with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, which could carry the death penalty, the Obama Defense Department announced that reports about Bergdahl would remain secret.
“Given today’s announcement, we now know why the Obama gang would keep a nearly five-year-old report secret about Bergdahl’s desertion,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The Obama administration lied and violated the law in releasing five terrorist leaders from captivity in exchange for Bergdahl, and is violating the federal open records law to cover its tracks.”
With respect to today’s announcement, Fitton added, “The untoward delay of justice by the Obama Pentagon is unseemly at best, and – as the decision was conveniently delayed well past the November elections – one must wonder if politics trumped military discipline and order among the Pentagon leadership who should know better.”
“Hands off” list allowed individuals with potential terrorist ties to enter the United States
Judicial Watch filed the suit after DHS failed to comply with a July 14, 2014, FOIA request seeking:
A copy of the DHS Office of Inspector General report regarding, concerning, or related to a “hands off list” purportedly maintained by DHS, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and/or US Customs and Border Protection (CDP) used to allow certain individuals to enter the United States, who had previously been denied entry to the United States or been made to undergo secondary screening by CBP based on suspicion of terrorism ties.
Any and all records of communication to or from DHS Inspector General Charles Edwards from May 31, 2014 regarding the aforementioned OIG report.
On May 6, 2014, Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) released internal DHS emails revealing an alleged terrorist “hands off” list allowing individuals with potential terrorist ties into the United States. The emails were attached to a letter Grassley sent to the DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson inquiring about the “hands off” list in general, and specifically seeking information about an unnamed individual DHS may have admitted into the country as a result.
The DHS emails included a 2012 email chain between U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) asking whether to admit the unnamed individual with ties to various terrorist groups. The person was believed to be a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and a close associate and supporter of Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, according to the email exchange obtained by Grassley’s office.
In his letter to Johnson, Grassley quotes an email from an ICE official to a CBP official saying, “I’m puzzled how someone could be a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial, be an associate of [redacted], say that the US is staging car bombings in Iraq and that [it] is ok for men to beat their wives, question who was behind the 9/11 attacks, and be afforded the luxury of a visitor visa and de-watchlisted.”
On May 19, 2014, Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee Mike McCaul (R-TX) told Breitbart News that that the “terrorist hands off list” e-mails released by Grassley had been under investigation by the newly appointed DHS Inspector General John Roth for over three months. McCaul added, “The new IG has inherited this matter. He’s a new IG. He’s pretty decent–well respected. Obviously, his predecessor was not.”
“The Obama administration’s unlawful secrecy on this ‘hands off’ list raises concerns about terrorists being allowed into the country,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Even when it comes to protecting our borders from known terrorists, the Obama administration places secrecy and politics above national security. Our nation has reached a dangerous pass.” Tags:Judicial Watch, Sues DOD, Department of Defense, Bowe Bergdahl, Chuck Hagel, Haqqani network Sues DHS, Department of Homeland Security, terrorist "Hands Off" list To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
“There is a rank due to the United States, among nations, which will be withheld, if not absolutely lost, by the reputation of weakness. If we desire to avoid insult, we must be able to repel it; if we desire to secure peace, one of the most powerful instruments of our rising prosperity, it must be known that we are at all times ready for war.” ~ George Washington (1793)
The title was inspired by a quote from Winston Churchill: "You may take the most gallant sailor, the most intrepid airman or the most audacious soldier, put them at a table together -- what do you get? The sum of their fears."
Clancy's plot focused on an Islamist terror group's endeavor to detonate a nuclear weapon in the U.S. A Syrian cell with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine reconstituted the nuke after discovering the necessary fissile material at an Israeli aircraft crash site.
True to Hollywood form, however, filmmakers grossly altered Clancy's original plot, resulting in a much less plausible but more politically correct version. In the movie, the terrorists are not Islamists, but "right-wing" neo-Nazis conspiring to detonate a nuclear bomb in Baltimore harbor -- and to start a war between the U.S. and Russia as a catalyst for cementing fascist alliances in the rest of Europe. Leave it to Tinseltown's Left-coast libs to cast these murderous villains as right-wing white supremacists rather than expose the real Islam!
Despite Hollywood's revisionism, Clancy's original plot was close to reality back in 1992, and it's much closer to the stark reality of today, given that Islamists may soon have fissile material from Iran to wage surrogate Jihad against the U.S.
The probability of al-Qa'ida and/or Islamic State actors gaining access to a nuclear weapon and then detonating it in the U.S. (most likely in an East Coast urban center) is increasing by the day.
That escalating threat is due solely to the "sum of all lies" being propagated by Barack Hussein Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, whose record of treasonous treachery dates back to his collaboration with our enemy during the Vietnam War.
There is another "Iran Hostage Crisis" unfolding here, but, unlike the one resolved minutes after Ronald Reagan took office in 1981, this time all Americans are being held hostage, and the current president is a collaborator.
The Middle East is devolving into an expanding theater of warfare between Iranian Shiites and Arab Sunnis, who could very well combine forces against Israel. Obama, with the help of Kerry and his predecessor, Hillary Clinton, have presided over the political disintegration of North Africa and the Middle East -- that dissolution being the direct result of a series of deceptions promulgated to suit Obama's domestic political agenda.
The first and foremost of those deceptions was rooted in Obama's 2012 bid for re-election. Amid the cascading failure of his domestic economic and social policies, BO centered his campaign upon faux foreign policy "successes" built around two fraudulent pretexts. First: "Four years ago, I promised to end the war in Iraq. I did." Second: "Al-Qa'ida is on the run."
In fact, Obama's calamitous retreat from Iraq in order to create a campaign slogan bumper sticker left a regional vacuum for the resurgence of a far more dangerous manifestation of Islamic terrorism under the ISIL label, which, in conjunction with a thriving al-Qa'ida terrorist network, poses a dire asymmetric terrorist threat to the West.
In a strategic region where former President George W. Bush's doctrine of preemption resulted in costly but significant strides toward regional stability and the protection of our critical national interests, Obama has managed to undo the hard-won success of Operation Iraqi Freedom and is doing his best to undermine Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
And just six months ago, Obama declared that his counterterrorism policies "have [been] successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia for years."
Well, take a gander at the state of Obama's poster-nations today.
How bad has it become?
Earlier this week, Obama’s former ambassador to Iraq, James Jeffrey, stated bluntly, “We’re in a g-ddamn free fall here."
Stop for a moment and ponder that assessment fully.
Of course, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn have already affirmed Jeffrey's appraisal.
Recall in his Senate testimony, Clapper stated that the direct links between ISIL and domestic terror networks have created “the most diverse array of threats and challenges I’ve seen in my 50-plus years in the [intelligence] business." He added, "When the final accounting is done, 2014 will have been the most lethal year for global terrorism in the 45 years such data has been compiled. ... I don’t know of a time that has been more beset by challenges and crises around the world. I worry a lot about the safety and security of this country. ... The homegrown violent extremists continue to pose the most likely threat to our homeland.”
And Flynn is firmly on record regarding Obama's failure to confront the Islamic threat: “You cannot defeat an enemy you do not admit exists. ... I think there is confusion about what it is that we are facing. It’s not just what has been defined as 40,000 fighters in the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, it’s also a large [radicalized segment of Muslims] who are threatening our very way of life."
As for the Obama/Kerry negotiations with Iran, Flynn notes, "Iran is [not only] a state sponsor of terrorism. Iran has killed more Americans than al-Qa'ida has through state sponsors, through their terrorist network Hezbollah. ... My sense of where the policy is -- it's almost a policy of willful ignorance. ... Here we are talking to Iran about a nuclear deal with this almost complete breakdown of order in the Middle East."
In February, former Acting Director of the CIA Mike Morell said that negotiating over the number of nuclear-enriching centrifuges is futile. “If you are going to have a nuclear weapons program, 5,000 is pretty much the number you need,” Morell said. “If you have a power program, you need a lot more. By limiting them to a small number of centrifuges, we are limiting them to the number you need for a weapon.”
Just last week, current CIA Director John Brennan declared that Iran "is still a state-sponsor of terrorism," but the CIA's current Worldwide Threat Assessment no longer lists Iran and Hezbollah as terrorist threats.
Who's in charge of this debacle?
As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu noted during his recent address to Congress, Obama's nuclear negotiations have "two major concessions: one, leaving Iran with a vast nuclear program and, two, lifting the restrictions on that program in about a decade. That's why this deal is so bad. It doesn’t block Iran’s path to the bomb; it paves Iran’s path to the bomb." Netanyahu further warned, "Iran’s neighbors know that Iran will become even more aggressive and sponsor even more terrorism when its economy is unshackled and it’s been given a clear path to the bomb."
"Free fall." "The most diverse array of threats." "Willful ignorance." "The number you need for a weapon." "[The deal] paves Iran’s path to the bomb."
And now, after claiming al-Qa'ida's demise, victory in Iraq and success in Somalia and Yemen, Obama and Kerry are trying to sell us on their nuclear weapons "deal" with Iran under the pretense that it will render the Middle East and our homeland safe from nuclear terrorism?
Negotiations with Iran were slated to conclude last night, March 31st, but it's "April Fools' Day," and, accordingly, Obama and Kerry have announced yet another extension of negotiations with Iran. Apparently three is not the charm.
Make no mistake, this "deal" is not designed to prevent nuclear terrorism, and at best may just delay it. Of course, no deal is better than a bad deal.
Thomas Sowell notes that Obama's motivation for this charade with Iran, despite robust objections from Senate and now 367 House Republicans and Democrats, is that "such an agreement will serve as a fig leaf to cover his failure to do anything that has any serious chance of stopping Iran from going nuclear. Such an agreement will protect Obama politically, despite however much it exposes the American people to unprecedented dangers."
In the end, the central issue is not whether Iran can be trusted, but that Obama can't be trusted. Clearly, Obama's foreign policy malfeasance and his blinding Islamophilia pose the greatest threat to U.S. national and homeland security. Tags:Mark Alexander, The Patriot Post, The Sum of All Lies, Iran, President Obama, foreign policy malfeasance, Islamophilia, threats, U.S., national, homeland securityTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Norm Beznoska Jr., Contributing Author: Two thousand years ago, Rome was the epicenter of the world. Rome was the.world's greatest power. Then it "ROTTED from within" by its' morally bankrupt, narcissistic, psychopath Emperors who gave "bread and circuses (welfare) and persecutions of Christians to Rome's ignorant masses" and it fell to foreign invaders in chaos and anarchy.
The following speech by renowned Roman Senator Marcus Tullius Cicero could have been given today on the floor of the US Senate: "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear.”Does this remind you of anyone?
--------------------------- Norm Beznoska Jr., aka Navyman Norm, is a Strongsville, OH resident . He contributes to the ARRA News Service via articles and Letters to the Editor. Tags:Norm Beznoska, Navyman Norm, quote by, Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman Senator, Warning From History, beware the traitor To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Unfortunately this is not a surprise as he has been responsible for a lot of sketchy behavior involving his eye doctor friend Salomon Melgen, including a $500,000,000 contract putting Dr. Melgen in charge of port security for the Dominican Republic.
As I said earlier last month, Bob Menendez must resign, and you were urged to encourage him to do just that by sending him a letter by clicking here.
This is only the beginning of his legal troubles and there is no way he will be focusing his time and energy on improving the state of New jersey - you can rest assured though he will do whatever he can to avoid jail time.
He even has the audacity to stay as a ranking member of the foreign relations committee, this makes him an international face for the United States government, which is damaging to our national interest in so many ways.
Tell Senator Menendez to do the right thing and resign from office by clicking here, so his state and our country are not collateral damage as he puts all his energy on staying out of prison.
------------------ Phil Kerpen is president of American Commitment. Follow him at (@kerpen) and on Facebook. He is a contributing author at the ARRA News Service. Tags:Phil Kerpen, American Commitment, Bob Menendez, Indicted, Time For Him To ResignTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Tags:rare sittings, moderate Islam, myth, editorial cartoon, AF BrancoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Phyllis Schlafly: Who would have thought, only a few years ago, that our basic First Amendment right of free speech would be under attack on college campuses (of all places!)? But those are now ordinary campus events.
Progressives want to shield college students from what are called “scary ideas.” They are not referring to Halloween pranks or costumes, or to historic wartime episodes of bitter fighting; the new buzz words are “trigger warnings,” “outgrowths of fragility,” or “sexual paranoia.”
Professors talk about the need to overturn the “privilege theory.” Anyone who can’t claim to belong to an oppressed group must be unfairly advantaged by unearned “privilege.”
A whole new vocabulary has come into collegians’ lingo. Students claim they suffer from “microaggressions,” a word defined as the use of a verbal expression or any customary social norm of behavior to which somebody might take offense or feel threatened.
Everyone is subject to having his ordinary conversation or acts construed as secretly or inadvertently using racism, sexism or heterosexism. Everyday slights or indignities, verbal or behavioral, are assumed to be giving offense.
Some students gripe about hostile classroom environments, which the Left usually attributes to “white privilege” and other forms of institutionalized oppression. Students are even offended by professors correcting their papers and exams because corrections allegedly deride their intellectual capacity and harm their psycho-physiological health.
Another trendy phrase among college students is the claim that they need “safe spaces” where their feelings can't be hurt. The safe place at Brown University, for example, was equipped with cookies, coloring books, Play-doh, calming music, pillows, a video of frolicking puppies, plus staff trained to deal with trauma.
“Safe places” are designed to shield students from being “bombarded” with upsetting opinions. For example, if a class discusses the “rape culture,” the college should provide a “safe space” for students who find some comments “troubling” or even (the new buzz word) “triggering.”
At Reed College in Portland, Oregon, freshman Jeremiah True was banned from participating in class discussion after he challenged the concept of “rape culture” and questioned the widely used statistic that one in five college women is sexually assaulted. The 19-year-old student was accused of “placing too much emphasis on men being unfairly charged with rape,” which was “deeply upsetting” to other students and “retraumatized and triggered survivors.”
Funny thing, I haven't heard of any safe places reserved for those who are offended by anti-American, anti-Christian, or even anti-religion talk. Where is the safe place reserved for the University of California, Irvine students who were upset when dozens of leftist professors signed a letter supporting banning the American flag on campus?
The professors’ letter stated that “nationalism, including U.S. nationalism, often contributes to racism and xenophobia” and referred to the American flag as “paraphernalia of nationalism … used to intimidate.” Rather than banning the flag, the university could have designated a “safe place” for any students who feel “intimidated” by the mere sight of the American flag.
At Cornell University, an assistant dean of students said he would welcome a pro-ISIS group on campus, even if it wanted to conduct a training camp for students or ship care packages to the Middle East. But at California State University, Stanislaus in Turlock, the Christian fraternity Chi Alpha and its Stanislaus Christian Fellowship were barred from campus for “discrimination” because their leadership positions were reserved for professing Christians.
And what about the students at Pine Bush High School in New York State where, during the regularly scheduled morning announcements, the speaker read the Pledge of Allegiance in Arabic? This event exploded into a raging controversy that divided the school into angry factions, even though the principal came on the loudspeaker to apologize.
National Review has blown the whistle on who really does enjoy “privilege” in America. This useful article shows that the most valuable “privilege” is not “white privilege” nor even “wealth privilege,” but is the “marriage privilege,” i.e., the advantage of growing up in a home with a mother and father who are married to each other.
Richard Reeves of the Brookings Institution also found that only 19 percent of the kids in the lowest economic quintile remain stuck at the bottom of the economic pile if they are born to parents who are married and stay married. This marriage privilege works for the middle class, too.
Harvard Professor of Economics Raj Chetty is another scholar who has noted the significance of the marriage privilege, but he added another dimension: the neighborhood where the kid lives. “Once we control for the fraction of single parents in an area, we find no correlation between racial shares and upward mobility.”
These conclusions were confirmed by the late William Raspberry, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist. He expressed little tolerance for those who blame black problems on poverty, crime or even racism when, he wrote, the chief cause is the failure of marriage and the absence of fathers.
-------------------- Phyllis Schlafly has been a national leader of the conservative movement since 1964. She founded and is president of Eagle Forum. She has testified before more than 50 Congressional and State Legislative committees on constitutional, national defense, and family issues. Tags:Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum, College Campuses, First Amendment, right of free speech, religious beleifs, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
by Alan Caruba, Contributing Author: This is hardly the best week to demonstrate his intense hatred of Israel, but since he has devoted 18 months to a fruitless and foolish negotiation with Iran, one can understand why Barack Hussein Obama is in a bad mood. His foreign policy “legacy” is close to being flushed down the Iranian toilet.
On March 31, the Defense of Democracies’ Iran Press Review quoted the Deputy Commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri, who said, “All should know that we will not allow the inspection of the country’s military and defense industries.” Or, as they say in Farsi, “No deal.”
This week began with Palm Sunday celebrating Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and proceeds to Good Friday which, at sundown, coincides with the Jewish observance of Passover and Christianity’s “last supper.” It concludes with Easter; holy days that occurred in the holy land that was Israel then and now.
Jesus was a Jew preaching primarily to Jews, whose disciples were Jews, and doing so entirely in Israel, the homeland of Jews for more than a thousand years at that time. The ancestors of Arabs in those days would have been regarded as Assyrians or Egyptians. The people called “Palestinians” did not exist until designated as such by Yassir Arafat in the 1960s.
So why is Obama leading a virtual war on Israel by declassifying information about Israel’s nuclear defenses and a purported effort to get the United Nations to declare “Palestine” a separate state?
At what point will it be understood that the United Nations has no power to create states or to grant formal “recognition” to state aspirants and that the Palestinian Authority and/or Hamas does not meet even the most basic characteristics of a state, lacking for example either a capitol or a currency.
As spelled out in the 1933 Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, “Palestine” would have to have a permanent population, a defined territory, a government, and the capacity to enter into relations with other states. By contrast, the current president of the Palestinian Authority is now into his eleventh year of a term that, by their own law, is limited to four.
Not only have the “Palestinians” refused statehood and a two-state relationship since the founding of Israel, but they have participated in large wars and small against Israel, beginning with one in 1948 when Israel declared its statehood. Despite 1949 Armistice Agreements, reprisal operations continued through to the 1960s from Syria, Jordan, and Egypt. The Six-Day war occurred in June 1967 and the Yom Kippur War was fought in 1973.
Focusing on the “Palestinians”, the First Intifada, an uprising against Israel in the West Bank and Gaza occurred from 1987 to 1993. It was followed by a Second Intifada from 2000 to 2005. Responding to escalating rocket fire, there was a three-week Gaza War from December 2008 to January 2009 and in 2014, the Israelis had to respond to weeks of rockets again.
Obama has turned to the United Nations knowing that it took the UN seventy years to even acknowledge the January 28-28 anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Birkenau, the Nazi death camp in which millions of Jews perished. The UN has studiously avoided the subject of anti-Semitism because that would only call attention to the fact that it has been the global platform for anti-Semitism since its founding in 1945.
A perfect example has been its Human Rights Council that has always included nations famed for their own lack of human rights. When it began its March 2nd session since electing 14 new members last fall, it included Saudi Arabia, Cuba, China and Russia. By the end of March, the Human Rights Council had declared Israel the world’s leading woman’s rights violator and followed up with a general condemnation, adopting four resolutions condemning Israel, four times more than any other of the 192 members of the UN.
This is the same UN that in 2014 elected Iran to its woman’s rights commission, that selected genocidal Sudan and other slave-holding nations to its Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations to oversee human rights activists, and whose UNRWA handed rockets found in Gaza schools back to Hamas. By acclamation, a senior post on the US Special Committee on Decolonization was given to the murderous regime of Syria.
The question of whether Israel is guilty of war crimes was raised in the UN when, after weeks of rocketing from Gaza, it defended itself with an air and land war. It followed the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teenagers in June 2014. Operation Protective Edge began on July 8 and lasted seven weeks. In the course of it, they discovered over thirty tunnels whose purpose was to provide access to Israel for attacks on its citizens. Apparently self-defense is not a privilege the UN wants to extend to Israel.
In last Saturday's issue of The New York Times, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, founder of the World Values Network, took out a full page advertisement comparing the deal to empower Iran to make its own nuclear weapons to the 1933 Munich Agreement by British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain with Adolf Hitler that led to World War II. In the Jerusalem Great Synagogue on the same day, the American-born Chief Rabbi said, “The President of the United States is lashing out at Israel just like Haman lashed out at the Jews.”
No doubt this will be on the minds of Jews, less than 2% of the world’s population, when they sit down to celebrate Passover, remembering their enslavement in Egypt and the exodus that led them to freedom. Jesus celebrated Passover and the Kingdom of God. He would pay for it when the Romans put him to death shortly thereafter.
It is futile to think that Obama will cease from his assaults on Israel in the remaining 22 months of his second and final term in office. Those who know the history cited above must join hands to resist this latest enemy of Israel, this disgrace to America who is already widely regarded as the worst, most lawless President ever elected to that office.
----------------- Alan Caruba is a writer by profession; has authored several books, and writes a daily column, Warning Signs He is a contribution author on the ARRA News Service. Tags:Alan Caruba, Warning Signs, Irael, President Obama, UN, Virtual War, on Israel To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Another Partisan Veto, Obama Kills Republican Bill To Halt Ambush Union Elections
Today in Washington. D.C.: Congress not in Session. They are on their Easter-Passover recess and will return for legislative business on April 13th.
Yesterday, shortly after noon, President Obama vetoed the a resolution of disapproval by the U.S. Congress of a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruling that sped up union elections. Republicans dubbed the NLRB's rule as the ‘ambush election’ rule, because it would allow unions to place undue pressure on workers and employers.
THe rule was advanced by the Democrat members of the NLRB who were previously controversial appointments confirmed under the democrats "Nuclear" option. It is evident by President Obama's veto, that the NLRB majority is dancing to the President Obama's approved Labor Union tune. And that he had no interest in listening to the people's voice through their legislators.
The Washington Free Beacon gives some details on the legislation. “The Republican-controlled House and Senate approved resolutions in March to prevent the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the nation’s top labor arbiter, from implementing new union election rules, which would have eliminated a 25-day waiting period in the union election process. Obama said on Tuesday that the GOP resolution undermined the NLRB’s attempt to ‘streamline a democratic process that allows American workers to freely choose to make their voices heard.’ Congressional Republicans say that the ambush election rule does more to undermine the democratic process.
“Unions and labor organizers spend months and sometimes years to get workers to sign petition cards to organize an election. Employers, meanwhile, are forced to play catch-up, educating workers on the potential downsides of union membership in the small window between the NLRB election petition and the election itself. . . .
“The NLRB is pushing ahead with the implementation of the regulations set to debut in April. The agency conducted training seminars on implementing the new rules at the headquarters of SEIU Local 32BJ in Manhattan on Thursday. . . . The veto does not mean that the new regulations will necessarily survive. Two different lawsuits have been filed in federal court challenging the legality of the NLRB’s actions. The regulations will go into effect on April 14.”
In a must-read editorial, The Wall Street Journal explains just what’s going on. “[O]n Tuesday President Obama did another giant favor for his friends in organized labor. He used his presidential authority to scupper a legislative challenge to the National Labor Relations Board’s ambush-election rule.
“In December 2014, the NLRB passed a final rule on a partisan 3-2 vote that greatly shortens the time for a workplace union-organizing election. This fits the pattern of the Obama-era labor board, which has been as biased toward organized labor as any in decades. So in March Congress employed a useful tool known as the Congressional Review Act to pass a resolution to overturn the new regulation. Mr. Obama issued a ‘memorandum of disapproval’—essentially a veto—to kill the Congressional measure and preserve the NLRB rule.
“From now on unions will have unlimited time to prepare their campaigns to organize a workplace, springing the election paperwork on an employer when they figure they have the best chance to prevail. By reducing the time before an election to as little as two weeks from the current average of 38 days, unions will be able to lobby workers and make their case before a company can counter with its own argument. According to the Labor Relations Institute, unions win 89% in elections held in under two weeks compared to two thirds of the time under what have been typical election procedures.
“The quickie rule also forces the employer to give the union personal information about employees, including personal cell phone numbers and email addresses. So much for employee privacy rights.”
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said: “The President’s partisan veto will further empower powerful political bosses at the expense of the rights of middle-class workers. Republicans believe workers have the right to make their own, informed choices when casting a ballot in the workplace; we don’t think powerful political bosses should rush or force that decision on them, as the ambush rule proposes. We’ll continue to stand strong against Obama Administration attempts to weaken workers’ rights in order to enrich its powerful political friends.”
Speaker of the House John Boehner said: “The NLRB’s ambush election rule is an assault on the rights and privacy protections of American workers. With his veto, the president has once again put the interests of his political allies ahead of the small business owners and hardworking Americans who create jobs and build a stronger economy.”
Sen. Lamar Alexander, chairman of the Senate’s Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, said: “The NLRB’s new ambush election rule forces a union election in a little as 11 days—before an employer and most employees even have a chance to figure out what is going on. I’m disappointed the president wasted this opportunity to prevent the board’s rule from infringing on every employee’s right to privacy and every employer’s right to free speech.”
Rep Kline, chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, said: "President Obama has decided to stand with his powerful friends in Big Labor, rather than America’s workers and job creators. With his veto, the president has endorsed an ambush election rule that will stifle employer free speech, cripple worker free choice, and jeopardize the privacy of working families. This fight isn’t over. Congress will continue to oppose this radical assault on workers and employers, and we will continue to demand a fair union election process.”
Sen Enzi, Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, said: “It’s disappointing that President Obama chose to side with big labor over the rights of employees and employers, With this rule the National Labor Relations Board has taken it upon itself to impose new regulations that would hurt businesses and undermine a process that is already providing fair and timely elections. The NLRB needs to know that this rule is out of bounds.”
Rep. Roe, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions. said: "With this veto, President Obama has further proved his administration is more concerned with supporting union bosses than ensuring a fair and impartial process that respects workers’ privacy and right to make decisions that are best for them. For far too long, we've seen the Obama administration’s activist NLRB – which should ensure fair and transparent union elections – put the interests of labor unions before those of job creators and American workers. This latest rule is nothing more than an attempt to speed up union elections, violating the rights of workers to make an informed decision and employers to communicate openly with their employees during a union organizing campaign.” Tags:President Obama, partisan veto, Congress resolution, against, NLRB, ambush rule, against protecting workers privacy,To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Carly Fiorina has indicated that she will be a candidate for the GOP nomination for president. She held her own on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace. While this is not an endorsement; it is a current admission that if Fiorina runs for office she will be another strong contender for the people to consider.
It should be noted that if America is going to have any chance of recovering from the 8 years of Obama administration, we will need people like Fiorina in significant positions working to repair the damage and to help get more people back to work and to government spending and government water under control.
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