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By Micah Halpern

Thursday May 1, 2008


Right means left. Up means down. Yes means no.

That's the Middle East for you.

The best way to understand the play book of the Middle East is to think of a game of opposites. You mean one thing, you say another. You want something specific, you do everything in your power not to have it happen. The cardinal rule of the Middle East goes like this: nothing should ever be taken at face value. Everything should be seen for its superficial meaning.

Take these past few days, for example.

First came rumors:
The Region was rife with rumors about discussions about negotiations about sending back and forth messages about peace between Israel and Syria. The scuttlebutt had it that Israel was willing to cede the Golan Heights in exchange for peace with Syria.

Then came a news report:
The story was first published in a newspaper from Qatar. According to that report Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert sent a message to Syrian President Bashar Assad intimating that the door to negotiations is open. The idea was that if Assad stepped over the threshold and if a peace accord was hammered out, Syria's reward for agreeing to peace with a neighboring country would be sweetened by that neighboring country's good and wealthy friend, the United States of America.

On the surface, it all looks legitimate.

It looks as if, finally, Israel and Syria are getting closer to negotiating than they have since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. But remember, this is the Middle East. Remember, think opposites. Remember, nothing should be taken at face value.

Finally, came confirmation:
Al Manar, Hezbollah satellite TV, interviewed Samir Taqi, the Syrian ambassador to Turkey and the diplomat responsible for delivering the message from Olmert to Assad.

And then clarification:
The real reason behind the move towards negotiations became clear. And I quote: "It is naive to think Syria would behave foolishly and abandon its strategic alliances with Iran and Hezbollah, which are not limited solely to the Israeli-Arab conflict but also touch on topical geopolitical issues. These strategic associations are for the long term." Taqi continued by explaining that Syrian has no plans for bailing out on Iran and Hezbollah. The real reason for any interest that was shown toward Israel is to stake a more significant Syrian claim on the Golan Heights.

Aha! Now we all get it.

To say the least, Iran became very nervous when Israel made overtures to Syria. Iran knows that if Syria falls into a peace accord with Israel that means that Syria will have been poached from their side of the hostilities and brought over onto the side of the Western infidel, the United States.

Syria knows that Iran needs to be placated, that Iranian concerns need to be soothed. Syria knows that Iran needs to know that all is well, that nothing has changed, that this really is the Middle East game being played.

So Syria sent its ambassador out onto the Shiite airwaves of Hezbollah TV to explain what should have been obvious to Iran and to all Middle East watchers, analyzers and players from the outset. And then Taqi took it a step further. Taqi explained that accepting overtures from the Israelis and accepting an invitation from the White House to attend the Annapolis Conference were one and the same.

Syria is not interested in peace, Syria is interested in getting the Golan back and Syria is interested in destroying Israel.

What stymies me is not that Syria took a great offer and threw it right back in the diplomatic face of Israel. Why stymies me is that serious, seasoned, world leaders actually thought that Syria would go for a deal.

Okay, so Jimmy Carter didn't get it. I expect nothing more of him. But significant players in the Israeli government - including the prime minister, allowed themselves to be duped by the Syrians - much as the Iranians were. This was not new behavior for the Syrians, they were playing by the old rules, not making up new rules. What happened?

If the Golan Height is given to the Syrians today, Iran and Hezbollah will be there tomorrow. I cringe to think about what those two haters of Israel would do with such an unbelievable vantage.

You know who got it?

You know who reacted only tepidly, very tepidly, to the entire advance toward negotiations episode - the United States, that's who. The United States does not trust Syria. As much as the United States wants there to be peace in the Middle East, the United States does not trust Syria to deliver on any bargain.

So the big winner in this game is the United States. Thankfully, this time around, there were no big losers.

Game's over.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Ahmadinejad Visits India
By Micah Halpern

Wednesday April 30, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Iran and India are about to sign an important natural gas deal that will establish a pipeline from Iran to India.
The United States is livid.

Ahmadinejad visited India on Tuesday to discuss the deal.
India is energy starved and needs it from any source it can get.

The US cannot insist that India back away from doing business with Iran, but they can and did beg India to at least link their gas deal to establishing international monitoring or to stopping the nuclear program in Iran. After all, Iran needs the business and may have agreed just to get the deal. But India was too frightened and went head without any pre-conditions.

Now India has become complicit in the policies of Iran.
India could have done something to aid the international community, but chose not to.
Now India has become complicit in the policies of Iran.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

What is Wrong With This Picture
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday April 29, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Palestinian judges have convicted and sentenced a Palestinian man to death.
He will face a firing squad in the West Bank city of Hebron.

The Palestinian was convicted of helping the Israelis find terrorists.
The crime was officially called collaboration with the Israelis.
The indictment recorded that this man assisted Israelis and aided them in finding four Palestinian terrorists.

The Palestinians have sworn to avenge those who collaborate with Israel. Yesterday's decision is not an isolated case - there are numerous examples of this type of justice including one where a Palestinian was executed by a gang while he was strapped to an x-ray table.

We have a problem here.
The Palestinians are mandated with the task of catching terrorists.
They are not.
So Israel is doing its best to find the leaders of these terrorist groups and Israelis need local Palestinians to assist them.

Any momentum for a peace agreement between Palestinian and Israeli leadership is predicated on stopping the terror.
And yet, Palestinians are executing the very people who are trying to stop terror.
What is wrong with this picture?

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

N Koreans Killed in Syrian Nuke Site
By Micah Halpern

Monday April 28, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The Japanese news network NHK came out with an important report today.
A South Korean intelligence source informed NHK that 10 North Koreans were killed on the morning of September 6, 2007 when Israel bombed the Syrian nuclear plant.
In fact, intelligence pictures show that the Syria facility was a near exact replica of North Korean sites.

Why is the death of 10 North Koreans significant?
It shows that the North Koreans were there, in Syria, and we know that they were certainly not there as a cleaning crew.

At the time, both the North Korean and the Syrians disavowed any connection.
This was a huge slap in the face to Syria, a humiliation, a defeat the Syrians needed to explain away.
So the Syrians and the North Korean organized protests for PR purposes.
They coordinated spin intended to deflect the responsibility and shift blame, making the incident a pure act of aggression by Israel against an Arab country.

The discovery that there were actually North Koreans at the Syrian nuclear, corroboration that came from an outside, non-Western source is another blow to the Syrian attempt to save face.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Ahmadinejad Is very Busy
By Micah Halpern

Sunday April 27, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Ahmadinejad is very busy lately.
Next week he will be in Pakistan for only a few hours.
His objective there will be to extend the diplomatic ground work and strengthen the foundation he is building for an anti-Western, anti-American block.

Officially Ahmadinejad is there to discuss economic relations.
But Ahmadinejad can't go anywhere without lobbying for his greater goal of ousting US hegemony over the world. He will also propose that Pakistan move away from friendship with the United States and move towards a stronger relationship with Iran.

Ahmadinejad is trying to pry apart US strategic partnerships and then entice countries into regional alliances that are anti-American.
That is exactly what he hoped to do this week when he called the leaders of many neighboring countries and told them that the "Americans as well as their allies are facing doom."

For example, when Ahmadinejad met with the Syrian foreign minister he repeated this and warned him to make certain Syria was not lured into the US web of lies.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Jordan Gets US Help
By Micah Halpern

Saturday April 26, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The US just gave the Jordanians $237,000 worth of equipment.
This is the largest gift of its kind to any country.

What possessed the United States to bestow this grant upon Jordan?
What kind of gift is it?
It is a gift of forensic computers - anti-terror software, hardware and personnel training.

The objective is to track and identify terror networks that are using the World Wide Web.
The system is highly sophisticated and it is a very important tool in fighting terror today.

The Jordanians have climbed aboard and joined the West in a world wide fight against Islamic extremism.
The Islamists want to overthrow the monarchy of Jordan as much as they want to unseat US hegemony over the world. The Jordanians know this and also know that the Islamists have more of a chance of hurting them locally and stirring up a mess in Jordan than they do by attacking the United States.

In essence, the United States gave Jordan a welcoming gift.
Welcome aboard Jordan.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

White House Diplomacy
By Micah Halpern

Friday April 25, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The White House has been very busy trying to make peace between Israel and the Palestinians this week.

Both Abdullah, King of Jordan and Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority paid visits to the West Wing and to the Oval Office, each on consecutive days.
At the same time Secretary of State Condi Rice was in the Middle East talking to the Israelis and other parties in the Region.

The objective of the White House is to apply pressure in order to bring about an agreement. Bush will be in Israel to celebrate Israel’s 60th Anniversary. While there he will convene a mini summit on the peace he is trying to force through.

The biggest stumbling block in Bush's way is neither Palestinian leadership nor Israeli leadership.
It is Hamas.

Hamas gets off on attacking Israel and undermining the other Palestinians. Hamas can never have a state - that is clear to everyone except Hamas.
And yet, no Palestinian leader and no other Arab leader is willing to risk ousting Hamas.

Until Hamas comes under control there can really be no progress on the peace front.
That is clear to everyone except Rice and Bush.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Hamas Wins in Hebron
By Micah Halpern

Thursday April 24, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

There were student council elections yesterday at Hebron University.
Hamas won 15 seats, Fatah won 14 seats.
A close call, but Hamas still comes out the winner.

But get this:
Polls in Gaza showed that Hamas' popularity were slipping and are now on the increase.
This student election, albeit in Hebron, points in another direction for college aged voters, it shows that they prefer Hamas if only by a hair.

Is Hebron that far from Gaza?
Hamas in Hebron does not have a majority, but it is increasing in popularity, especially among students.

Fatah can read the handwriting on the wall.
So Fatah is embarking on a significant effort to restore status as the overwhelming popular power.
All the while Hamas is trying to work their magic to convince Palestinians that they are the true leaders of the Palestinians.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

By Micah Halpern

Wednesday April 23, 2008


It's a case of the kettle calling the pot black - Muslim style.

Al Qaeda is on the defensive - not against the United States, not against Israel, not against any Western country. Al Qaeda is taking to task one of the only countries that really counts in their Muslim world, al Qaeda is taking Iran to task.

For the past several months the Iranians have been spreading a conspiracy theory that diminishes al Qaeda. The theory has it that together, in collaboration, the United States and Israel masterminded 9-11, that it was not al Qaeda, that it was not Osama bin Laden and his henchmen that it was a home grown Western job.

And al Qaeda, in the person of Ayman Zawahiri is setting the record straight.

In a contest that ran from December 2007 through January 16, 2008 Muslim Arabs were invited to submit questions for Zawahiri, the al Qaeda number two man behind bin Ladin, to answer. Zawahiri chose the questions he deemed most interesting and important and has begun responding to those questions via the internet. It is all part of an al Qaeda sponsored public relations campaign. Al Qaeda needs a new and improved reputation in the Arab world.

The first installment of Zawahiri responses came out a few days ago, the second is out now and is a two - hour long monologue available on several Islamist websites.

The message in this installment is clear: when it comes to 9 -11 it was al Qaeda, it was all al Qaeda and it was only al Qaeda.

Why has Iran been spreading this awful anti-al Qaeda conspiracy theory? According to Zawahiri, there are several reasons why.
Reason # 1: "The purpose of this lie is clear - (to suggest) that there are no heroes among the Sunnis who can hurt America as no else did in history. Iranian media snapped up this lie and repeated it."

In other words, for Zawahiri, al Qaeda and Iran it is all about the inner Muslim conflict between Sunnis and Shiites.

But Zawahiri could not let it end there. Rather than presenting his argument - which many Muslims could find cogent and convincing, Zawahiri continues on with his own conspiracy theory i.e., his own lie.
Reason # 2:
":Iran's aim here is also clear - to cover up its involvement with America in invading the homes of Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq."

If it was obvious before, it is all the more obvious now. Al Qaeda and Iran hate one another. Zawahiri has spoken time and again about the intentions of Iran to hijack the Muslim agenda and take charge of the Muslim world. He has repeated over and over again his assertion that Iran is dangerous.

Through his audio preachings Zawahiri is promoting the good that Sunni al Qaeda brings to the Muslim word. It is al Qaeda, says Zawahiri, who is fighting against Western evil. Al Qaeda, he says, is "the primary force opposing the Crusaders and challenging Iranian ambitions" in Iraq. He continues by throwing out the terms ? "Iranian collaborators complicity" and "Iranian agents."

Those are fighting words.

"Crusaders" is an obvious reference to the United States. "Agents" and "Collaborators" are very strong words in Arabic with serious historical connotations that can justify targeting and killing.

The diatribes of Ayman Zawahiri have become familiar litany to all who listen. And the success of Iran in minimizing the role of al Qaeda can be directly linked to the frequency and intensity of those diatribes.

Sunnis are running scared. Iran is posing a direct threat. Iranian policies, politics and activities are presenting a real challenge to al Qaeda. Iran’s involvement in destabilizing Iraq and their sprint to become a significant nuclear power minimizes the allure and grandeur of al Qaeda in the Muslim world.

Muslim competition for guts and glory is heating up.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Carter And Obama
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday April 22, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

It is primary day in Pennsylvania.
Everyone, it seems, is holding their collective breath.
Everyone, world over.
Who will win this critical primary?
Who will win this critical election?

Even Jimmy Carter, who until now has not endorsed a candidate, is talking about Obama.

Carter reported that as he traveled throughout Asia and the Middle East the talk of the towns was about Barack Obama.
Carter was referring to Ghana, Nigeria, and Nepal.
"World opinion is strongly supportive of Obama, that's all we hear," was his exact quote.

It strikes me as very interesting that these countries have something to say about our election, that they are thinking about the Pennsylvania primary, about 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and the presidential election.

But honestly - I care about as much for their opinion as I do about the opinion of former President Jimmy Carter.
I care about insight, not about opinion.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Iran Bans Billiards
By Micah Halpern

Monday April 21, 2008

I'm Predicting:

King Louis XIV, Mary Queen of Scots, FDR, and even George Washington all loved to play it.
They all loved to play pool, billiards, snooker.
The northern region of Iran just imposed a fatwa - a religious edict- banning the game.

Iran has a long list of banned behaviors.
Immodest dress for women, exposed hair and face when outside the home, has been banned and rock music has been banned.
In the 19th century Western tobacco companies were taking over the market and the product and so a fatwa was issued resulting in the total elimination of smoking in Iran at that time.
The effects of these bans have been mixed over the years.

The Iranians are trying to legislate behavior and morality.
They are trying to stop all outside influences by using the religious police.
In today's world, however, society is not influenced by pool tables or tobacco - in today's world society is influenced by music, movies and culture transmitted by way of satellite internet.

So Iran is trying to block the internet by having people who use internet cafes register with the religious police.
The Iranians will discover that it is almost impossible to stop the internet and separate the young people of Iran from their music.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Israel Opens Mosque in Hospital
By Micah Halpern

Sunday April 20, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The most amazing thing happened in an Israeli hospital this week.
It happened at Rambam Hospital in Haifa, named after the great Jewish scholar and physician from the Muslim world, Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon.

The hospital opened a mosque.
The mosque conforms to religious standards.
The mosque has a separate section for men and a separate section for women.

Opening a mosque shows the real Israel at its best.
Israel is an open and free society and respects minority rights.
Can you imagine an Arab nation having a synagogue in a hospital?
Can you imagine an Arab nation sponsoring a synagogue anywhere?

For those who do not know, Israel really is a special place.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

It's Crazy Yeh?
By Micah Halpern

Saturday April 19, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Last week the Israeli oil contractors were killed in a terror attack.
The men worked at Nahal Oz, the oil depot that supplies Gaza.

The terrorists were from Gaza.
The attack significantly shut down oil delivery to Gaza for a few days.
Shortly after trucks resumed their deliveries into Gaza, bringing oil for hospitals transportation needs and food supplies snipers started began to snipe at the trucks.
If that scenario seems counter productive, well, welcome to the Middle East.

Why would the Palestinians do this to their own people?
Because they want to blame Israel for not delivering the oil and because they know that most people will not connect the dots and figure out that it was the Palestinians who were preventing the oil supply from coming in.

Why else and more importantly?
Because Hamas terrorist leadership does not care one whit about the lives of their own people.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Carter & Hamas Again
By Micah Halpern

Friday April 18, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Hamas leaders met with former US President and Nobel Laureate Jimmy Carter yesterday.
Following the meeting the Cairo office sent out a message - a self congratulatory message.

From the stand point of Hamas, meeting with Carter gave their organization both credibility and standing.
From the stand point of Hamas, meeting with Carter was the perfect counter balance to current US policy which defines Hamas as a terrorist group.

Let me be perfectly clear:
Jimmy Carter is a dope, but in this case, he is not being duped.
Carter knows what he is doing.
Carter knows he is giving Hamas standing with Europe and the Muslim world. Carter knows he is giving Hamas significant currency and presence.
It fits into Carter's greater sense of the world because the former president believes that the United States is too powerful and too much in charge.

Carter wants to even the playing field and for him, that objective is more important than preserving America.
An uneven playing field will destroy the United States and her friends.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Ahmadinejad's Rants About 9-11
By Micah Halpern

Thursday April 17, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Ahmadinejad just called the 9-11 attacks "suspicious."

Here is the continuation of the quote:
"The Americans claimed that 3,000 people were killed in the collapse of the Twin Towers but never named the victims. However, they used this claim to justify their attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan, which resulted in the death of a million people."

Truth is all the victims were named.
2948 confirmed dead, 24 reported dead, 24 reported missing - that totals 2996. Truth is far fewer than a million people have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Where does fact start and fiction begin with the Iranian president?
For Ahmadinejad the message is what counts and truth and reality easily fall by the wayside. Ahmadinejad's message is about convincing the Muslim world of a conspiracy, about convincing them that the United States will do anything to attack and destroy Muslims - even kill their own people or make up an atrocity about 3000 deaths.

The horror of it all is that Ahmadinejad delivers a convincing message to his audience.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

By Micah Halpern

Wednesday April 16, 2008


Jimmy Carter is probably not an Antisemite. He is probably not un-American. In plain English the gentleman from Plains, Georgia, is just plain WRONG!

He is wrong about his take on events in the Middle East. Wrong about his perspective on how to solve conflicts in the Middle East and worldwide. Wrong about the self-important role he has chosen for himself to play - a former president of the United States turned humanitarian for the world.

And because he is so wrong, so very wrong, and because he is so self-centered and single-minded he is doing much damage to the people he represents - the United States of America and to the people whose cause he is championing - the Palestinians. About Israel he doesn't really care, but he is, of course, doing damage there, as well.

Whatever you think of Jimmy Carter, his is a name that packs weight. Around the world Jimmy Carter's face, with that broad grin and buck smile, is identifiable and recognized. Around the world Jimmy Carter is respected and highly acclaimed. His is the face of the United States that most of the world both likes and appreciates. His is the kind of face that most of the world wishes the rest of the United States had.

But look closer and you will see the real face of Jimmy Carter. Look closer and you will see that the face of Jimmy Carter is fundamentally the face of a loser and a capitulator. Look closer and you will see that the famous smile masks a political career marred by catastrophic decision making and poor judgment.

I am not referring only to the Iran hostage crisis which cost Carter the presidential election and a second term in office. I am referring to Jimmy Carter's attitude toward the world. The crisis in Iran is just one example of his skewed world perspective and his faulty, self-interested, analysis.

During this trip to the Middle East Jimmy Carter, peacemaker, cum diplomat, cum thinker has bent over backwards to accommodate the enemies of the West, the enemies of the United States, the enemies of Israel and even the enemies of the people he proposes to save - the Palestinians.

When Jimmy Carter meets and dialogues with Hamas leaders he is by extension bestowing upon those men and the organization they represent a place of stature in world diplomacy. The United States calls Hamas a terrorist organization. Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, major Arab players in the Middle East, are downplaying the stature of Hamas in their region. The Palestinian Authority is trying desperately to belittle the status and stature other Palestinians have bestowed upon Hamas and here Jimmy Carter goes and raises the stature and legitimacy bar.

Carter bolsters Hamas. By meeting with this terrorist organization he is de facto recognizing Hamas and giving Hamas credence. Yes, Hamas also provides social, welfare and other services to certain Palestinians, but that does not make them any less terrorists. A murderer who stops off to deliver a bouquet of flowers to his mother on the way to committing his crime is still a murderer.

To go and lay a wreath at Arafat's tomb is not to have learned from the investigations and realizations of corruption and malfeasance that became so obvious after Arafat's death. It is to ignore the facts in favor of predilections and predisposed notions. It is self-serving. It is not morally uplifting. It does not help the Palestinian cause, it perpetuates Palestinian myth and mythos.

It buys into the worst part of the Carter gestalt, the world as seen through the eyes of Jimmy Carter, a point of view that says that everyone is the same, that everyone has equal weight. It is a point of view in which traditional enemies and traditional friends are put on an even keel. It is a point of view that obliterates the special relationship between Israel and the United States.

The entire Arab world knows that there is a special relationship between Israel and the US. The only person who is either unaware of or in disagreement with that special relationship - I haven't yet figured out which - is Jimmy Carter and his small band of followers.

Jimmy Carter needs to be sidelined - in the name of peace and peaceful co-existence. Jimmy Carter needs to be denied access and special State Department permission to undermine US diplomatic policy and practice. Jimmy Carter needs to get a swift kick in the ... but that would be inappropriate, un PC and downright - well, gosh darned it, downright wrong.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

The Pope's Speech at Ground Zero
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday April 15, 2008

I'm Predicting:

I caught an advance peak at some of the Pope's US speeches.

The speech that most interested me is the Papal address slated to be delivered Sunday at Ground Zero. The Pope will pray for the terrorist murderers, he will ask that they see the light, embrace peace and convert to Christianity.

All of the Pope's presentations are written out and read.
Everything is scripted.
Nothing is left open to interpretation or, more specifically, misinterpretation.

Here are the exact words as written in the speech:
"Turn to Your way of love those whose hearts and minds are consumed with hatred ... God of understanding, overwhelmed by the magnitude of this tragedy, we seek Your light and guidance."

Expect that these comments coming on the heels of the public conversion to Catholicism by Madgi Allam - one of the most famous Muslims in Europe - will ignite Muslim wrath and indignation.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Gaza is Getting Fuel
By Micah Halpern

Monday April 14, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Finally: Israel has decided to call Hamas on their lies.
The question is: Will anyone listen.

Colonel Nir Press, head of the Israeli liaison office with the Palestinians has set the record straight. "Israel has permitted the steady and continuous flow of fuel into the Gaza Strip in recent weeks."

- Israel has trucked in 2,200,000 liters of diesel a week - that is more than enough to power the electric power plant that provides 30% of Gaza's electricity.
- Israel permits unlimited amount of cooking gas.
- Israel permits 800,000 liters of diesel for transportation and 75,000 liters of regular gasoline for cars per week for use by hospitals, school busses, food trucks, food plants, garbage and other humanitarian purposes

- The Palestinians have a fuel stock of 188,000 liters of diesel, they are not even using everything they are get each week.
- Hamas said that the Israelis had cut of electricity, but it was actually Hamas who cut off the 30% of electricity they contribute. The Israelis were still providing electricity and still sending their workers out to repair lines in Gaza.

It is time to call a spade a spade.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Iran on The Security Council--Crazy
By Micah Halpern

Sunday April 13, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Have they no shame.
Iran has requested a seat on the United Nations Security Council.

The Iran plan is to replace Indonesia for the Asia seat and serve in 2010 - 2012.
Perhaps the Iranians figure that since such an inordinate amount of time is spent disciplining them in the Security Council this would be the best way to prevent the Security Council from censuring and punishing them.
If they are part of the solution, they can't be the problem - so to speak.

Irony of all ironies, Iran might actually get that seat at the table.
If that should happen, it would make a mockery of the United Nations and of the Security Council which is one of the only effective - albeit partially effective - bodies in the UN.

What we are really seeing here is Iran's ability and desire to solve her diplomatic and international relations problems.
Iran is not running from problems. Iran is resolving problems by co-opting the bodies that cause them problems. Iran is using diplomatic weight to solve problems from the inside the UN.

This Iranian tactic is brilliant - and I hope it fails.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Terror Poison Scheme Foiled
By Micah Halpern

Saturday April 12, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Most of the people employed in Israeli restaurants are Arabs.
Most of the patrons in Israeli restaurants are Jews.

Imagine if terrorists infiltrated a restaurant and poisoned the customers.
That's what almost happened two days ago.

Two Arabs from Nablus, a city on the West Bank, workers in a restaurant in the city of Ramat Gan (located seconds from Tel Aviv) intended to lace a white, odorless, tasteless powder into the food they were preparing in the kitchen. The restaurant, called Express Grill, is a fast food place that usually serves lunch to hundred of patrons every lunch.

The terrorists, now under arrest, were working illegally in Israel.
They had been recruited by the Al Aqksa Brigade of Fatah.
The poison was supposed to be given to them by their Nablus handlers.
The poison material probably came in from Hezbollah.
The handlers are being sought, their identities are known.

This was very effective intelligence.
The plot was uncovered and the terrorists were captured.
The terrorists knew enough about their handlers to identify them.
The results could have been devastating.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Carter Will Meet Hamas
By Micah Halpern

Friday April 11, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Jimmy Carter has announced his plans to visit Syria to meet with Halad Mashaal, the leader of Hamas.
Hamas officials have confirmed that the meeting will take place in Damascus.

Hamas is a terrorist organization.
Hamas figures prominently on both the White House and US State Department terrorist lists.

The State Department is saying that Carter has been in contact with them and made the proper requests. The States Department made it very clear that they do not recommend this discussion with Hamas.
One can actually argue that it is illegal to speak with Hamas if they are the enemy. Consorting with the enemy is against the law.

Carter correctly got permission from the State Department.
But he is undercutting US policy.
And he is undermining the special relationship that has been forged between Israel and the United States.
And he knows it.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

US Push for Peace
By Micah Halpern

Thursday April 10, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The Palestinian Israeli agreement is not yet dead, but it is certainly dying.

Meetings are scheduled for the next month aimed at motivating the primary players.
The goal of all these meeting will be to breathe life into the United States brokered agreement by hammering away at Israeli and Palestinian resistance.

The Quartet, UN, US, EU and Russia, are scheduled to meet in Amman, Jordan on April 17th.
Palestinian Prime Minister Abbas is schedule to meet with George Bush in the White House on April 23rd.
Bush is scheduled to be in Israel to celebrate the 60th birthday of the state on May 14th-16th.
In a rumor circulated by Palestinian sources the US president will meet with Palestinian, Jordanian, Egyptian, Israeli and maybe even Saudi leaders in the port city of Sharm el Sheik on May 17th.

High level talks are on the horizon.
The United States is pushing for results - palpable results before the end of you-know-who's term in office in 2008.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

By Micah Halpern

Wednesday April 9, 2008


Which European country is impartial? It could be a question on any TV game show. On Millionaire the answer should be worth no more than $100. On Smarter Than A Fifth Grader the kids would get it right away. The answer of course, is Switzerland.

But really, here comes the buzzer, that answer is wrong. Which country claims to be impartial? That would be Switzerland. Which country hides behind impartiality? That would be Switzerland. But which country truly is impartial - Switzerland is not the answer.

Switzerland has always had the reputation of being impartial. So impartial, in fact, that they are a country without an army. There is no need for protection if you are truly impartial, no reason to feel threatened if you are truly impartial. But Switzerland only pretends at impartiality, Switzerland has successfully put up a facade of impartiality and Switzerland is laughing all the way to the bank - and I mean that quite literally.

During World War II, while the Germans were perpetrating a Holocaust by murdering millions of European Jews, the Swiss claimed impartiality and eagerly accepted German monies and Nazi monies. And then they saved the property and properties of those murdered Jews of Europe who put money in their banks for safe keeping. And when the few survivors tried to regain their family money and property the Swiss put stumbling blocks in their way, all in the name of impartiality. Swiss authorities asked for actual documentation on accounts, they asked for death certificates - they asked for material that was impossible to produce. They feigned ignorance. They pretended not to know that relocation and deportation were Nazi code for murdered.

Switzerland has allowed, even encouraged, criminals and mafia lords to take advantage of their impartiality for years, using Swiss bank accounts to hide illegally gotten gains. And now, right now, Switzerland would have us believe that they are pursuing impartiality by investing in Iran and purchasing Iranian oil.

In today's world impartiality is both unfeasible and almost impossible. Countries, especially Western countries, should take an interest in and be actively involved in regional and even global affairs - they should not hide behind the guise of impartiality in order to advance their own self interests and personal gain. In today's world that behavior is immoral and it is wrong.

Societies must condemn evil and condemn the perpetrators of evil. Trading with Iran is supporting Iran and supporting Iranian policy. Iran is a state sponsor of terror. This is not open for question. Iran admits to supporting Hezbollah and Hamas, avowed and acknowledged terrorist organizations. By making a deal with Iran and by purchasing Iranian oil Switzerland is de facto supporting terror.

Switzerland is now not only investing in Iran and buying oil from Iran, the Swiss government has signed a $30-$50 million a year renewable contract with Iran. The loudest voice to declaim this outright abuse of status is the Anti-Defamation League. The ADL has placed advertisements in major newspapers around the world, in European newspapers including Swiss papers and in leading papers across the United States including The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. The ads have a clear message: "When you finance a terrorist state you finance terrorism."

The Swiss have not learned the lessons of history. Once again their behavior is immoral, repugnant and dishonorable. Their insistence on touting their impartial status is bogus and dishonest. The Swiss are breaking the Western economic boycott of Iran because they are getting a good deal from Iran. And they hide behind their thin veil of impartiality.

Shame on you Switzerland for lining the pockets of mass murdering terrorists.

Shame on you Switzerland for hiding behind a false claim of superiority.

Shame on you Switzerland for shunning your responsibility to the Western world.

Shame on you, Switzerland.

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Iran - US Talks About Iraq
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday April 8, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Yesterday the Iranians announced that they received a formal note from the United States asking for a meeting.
The note was sent through the Swiss Embassy in Teheran.

In 2007 Iranian and United States diplomats met three times.
Two of the meetings were high level and involved the US ambassador to Iraq.

This past March the same Iranian delegation that met with the US ambassador to Iraq ventured to Iraq for a 4th meeting with the United States.
That meeting never happened.
The United States said that the Iranians never firmed up the meeting.

Now the United States and Iran will meet again.
They will talk about Iraq.
They will talk about how to make Iraq safer.

Iran is using Iraq.
Iran is destabilizing Iraq and the using the conflict to strike at the United States.
Toning down the tensions can only help.
Maybe, afterwards, they can talk about resolving the nuclear issue.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Syria Is Freaking Out Over Israel
By Micah Halpern

Monday April 7, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Tensions are at the boiling point between Syria and Israel.
Israel plans on holding a national safety exercise this coming week.
Syria thinks that the exercise is preparation for an Israeli attack against them.

The Israeli exercise, planned for Sunday through Tuesday, will include a national siren and instructions given over television and radio.
Every school and every government office will learn how to respond in case their country is attacked.
There will be training in conventional and non-conventional attacks including nuclear, biological and chemical attacks.

Syria is freaking out and is hinting at calling up army reserves and amassing troops.
Syria thinks that they need to prepare a counter attack.

One problem in the Middle East is that sometimes actions are misunderstood.
Those misunderstandings can lead to war.
Right now Syria is misreading Israel.

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PA Says No Solution to Gaza
By Micah Halpern

Sunday April 6, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad was quoted on Saturday in the Arabic media as saying:
"There is no solution for the troubles in Gaza, or for the rockets being fired from it." He continued, "All we can do is transfer funds to the Gaza Strip."

True - and deeply troubling.
The PM is confirming that Palestinian leadership is not deluded about the power of Hamas. He is confirming the reality that Hamas will continue to fire at will at Israel. He is confirming that Palestinian leadership has neither the intention nor the ability to stop Hamas or alter the situation.

It is the United States that is deluded. The United States still believes that the Palestinian Authority has the power to stop the barrage of rockets shot into Israel on a daily basis.

I hope the United States reads these statements of Fayyad.
I hope the United States is capable of revising their estimate of the situation.
Only then will the United States be able to properly address the situation.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Muslim Brotherhood Does What?
By Micah Halpern

Saturday April 5, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Egypt arrested 34 members of the Muslim Brotherhood yesterday.
The arrests were made because of a textile workers strike scheduled for Sunday in Egypt.

The strike has serious reformist overtones and is actually a pro-democracy rally.
The Muslim Brotherhood has expressed support for the strike.
The question is: Why is the Muslim Brotherhood at all interested in this strike?

It doesn't make sense: The textile workers want to reform an oppressive regime and empower the people with more power in decision making and control.
The Muslim Brotherhood wants to oust the government and replace it with an Islamic caliphate.
Democracy is the furthest from the changes they want to achieve.

Here's the real reason why: The Muslim Brotherhood sees this strike as a way to drive a wedge between the Egyptian people and their leadership.
The strike is simply a convenient means to an end for the Muslim Brotherhood.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

China Cuts A Deal With Syria
By Micah Halpern

Friday April 4, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

China is a major player in our world.
China is a self-interested player, looking out only for itself.
China thinks only of China when making international decisions.

Not surprisingly, China and Syria signed an oil refinery deal yesterday.
The original agreement was for China to build an oil refinery for Syria exactly next to the nuclear plant that Israel blew up in September of 2007.
The agreement stipulates that China will complete the refinery in 2011.
The refinery will have a refining capacity of 100,000 barrels per day.

China has accomplished two major goals.
# 1: inroads into another Arab country
# 2: another opportunity to irritate the United States and the West
More than that, China gets access to another oil reserve.

From China's point of view this was a very sly and successful agreement.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

Al Qaeda's PR Problem
By Micah Halpern

Thursday April 3, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

Ayman Zawahiri has a lot to say.
Zawahiri spent an hour and a half defending al Qaeda in a recently released audio tape responding to email questions from believers.
Zawahiri's bottom line: we do not kill innocent people and if they died it was unintended.

"We haven't killed the innocents, not in Baghdad nor in Morocco, nor in Algeria, nor anywhere else."
"If there is any innocent who was killed in the Mujahideen's operations, then it was either an unintentional error or out of necessity."

Was this pure arrogance?
It is an undisputable fact that al Qaeda policy is to target innocent people.
Why did Zawahiri really come out with these statements?
Because right now al Qaeda is suffering from a PR disaster in the Muslim world. Because right now al Qaeda is seen as murderers and trouble makers.
Because right now al Qaeda needs to resuscitate its reputation.

Who knows - this might just work.
Ayman Zawahiri is promising to keep these tapes coming.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

What Islam Really Thinks About You
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday April 2, 2008

I've Been Thinking:

The world's leading Muslim Wahabi leader is Sheik Abdul Rahman al Barrak.
He is the leading Sunni cleric in Saudi Arabia and one of the most powerful voices in the Muslim world.

In March in a rare fatwa or religious edict, al Barrak called for the deaths of two newspaper columnists.
He called them "clerics of darkness."
He called their work heretical and said they should be put to death unless they publicly recanted their writings.

What were these heretical views?
The columnists considered questioning the established Wahabi view that Christians and Jews were unbelievers.

The West has been brainwashed to believe that Christians and Jews are seen as believers by classic Islam.
I do not think Sheik Barrak believes that way --- neither does his Wahabi sect which, by the way, includes al Qaeda.

Read my new book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.

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