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Title: Blog by Novelist William S. Frankl, MD

Archive for April, 2013

Totalitarian Crackdown in Washington

Monday, April 29th, 2013

Whistle blowers are popping up within the State, CIA, and possibly Defense departments, asking to speak and blow open the cover up in the Benghazi nightmare. The Obama regime is threatening all whistle blowers with loss of their jobs and their future careers, and refuse to provide them with legal counsel. And one of the allegations is that troops COULD HAVE BEEN SENT IN to rescue the ambassador and others, but for some unknown reason were not.

What has happened to our government? Is this the American government we all grew up in? Or is this a totalitarian takeover?

Security At It’s Best.

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Today it was revealed that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the dead Boston Marathon bomber was fingered by the Russians at least twice after his visit to Russia and Dagestan. The Russians were concerned that he had been trained as a terrorist during his stay in Russia. This was conveyed to the FBI, the CIA, and Homeland Security. But apparently the three agencies didn’t talk to each other. Perhaps the bombing could have been avoided. Gee, looks like we are back to square one, before Bush.

More Immigration Follies

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

On 4/23/13, the Politico has an article about the “Gang of eight” (See my post on 4/22/13). Here is what the politico says about the bill, and I quote:

“The immigration proposal pending in Congress would transform the nation’s political landscape for a generation or more — pumping as many as 11 million new Hispanic voters into the electorate a decade from now in ways that, if current trends hold, would produce an electoral bonanza for Democrats and cripple Republican prospects in many states they now win easily.”

So why are Republicans McCain, Rubio, and Flake pushing the bill? Are they crazy or stupid or both? Keep tuned.

The Crisis of Islam

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

The following is a marvelous description of the historic problems within Islam and a mirror into our problems in dealing with Islam. Whether this is in any way sheds light on the Boston Marathon attack ––– only time will reveal.

Gatestone Institute

The Crisis of Islam

by Amin Farouk

April 12, 2013

The Islamists’ fundamental mistake is that they believe Allah and Muhammad … are so weak, so vulnerable, that they need Muslims to protect them. They thus deny the absolute omnipotence of Allah and Muhammad…, neither of whom, as is well known, needs protection, nor to have mortals killed to defend them, nor have people become shaheeds [martyrs] to assure themselves a place in Paradise.

In 2010 the Egyptian-born German academic Hamed Abdel-Samad wrote a book called Der Untergang der islamischen Welt (The Fall of the Islamic World), in which he predicted the collapse of the Islamic world within 30 years. This groundbreaking book was written by a man of courage whose real intention was to improve the ranks of Islam and take us forward. As past experience has shown, publishing such a book is liable to cost Abdel-Samad his life, because the extremists among us, those still intent on murdering Salman Rushdie and who cannot bear the thought of pluralism, certainly will not stand for what they regard as more criticism of the prophet Muhammad (May peace and the blessing of Allah be upon him).

Abdel-Samad claims that Islam has not yet answered the fundamental questions of life, that it has passed its prime and that the Qur’an is relevant only for the seventh century, not the twenty-first. As an observant Muslim, I disagree with him. I believe that the Qur’an is eternally relevant, but I also believe that he has the right to criticize freely whatever he likes.

The Islamists’ mistake is that they believe Allah and Muhammad (May peace and the blessing of Allah be upon him) are so weak, so vulnerable, they need Muslims to protect them, and to do it by killing anyone who breathes a word of criticism, even if it means killing other Muslims. They thus deny the absolute omnipotence of Allah and Muhammad (May peace and the blessing of Allah be upon him), neither of whom, as is well known, needs protection, nor to have mortals killed to defend them, nor to have people become shaheeds [martyrs] to assure themselves a place in Paradise.

Abdel-Samad’s book describes the magnitude of the tragedy that will unfold for the Islamic world in the next 30 years. It describes the thundering collapse of the economies of the oil-producing countries the day after the wells run dry. Agricultural lands and green forests will turn into deserts, and sectarian strife, already chronic, will flare into full-scale battles.

The total decline of Islam, which began a thousand years ago, concluded Abdel-Samad, will result in mass emigration from the Arab-Muslim world to the West, especially Europe. That is because the Islamic tragedy, according to him, is based on conceptual backwardness, on a society whose economic and social thinking belong to the Stone Age, a society religiously and politically divided against itself. According to Abdel-Samad, Islam has brought mankind neither innovation nor creativity.

He bases his prediction on a number of factors, central to which is that the Islamic world does not have a creative economy, it has no significant social order and no constructive cognitive process, and therefore its collapse is inevitable. He notes that Islam knew better days: the Renaissance of the Middle Ages. Then, he says, Muslims opened themselves to the cultures around them and were released from their isolation. The Muslim scholars translated the writings of the Greeks, the Romans and the Christians, absorbed their wisdom and even brought it to the West — but failed to bring it to Mecca, Al-Madinah or the Arabian Peninsula. The translations were not original Islamic works but rather reworkings of Cyrenaic and Assyrian translations, done by people who enjoyed – alas, for a short time – intellectual freedom under the aegis of Islamic rulers. While around the world various cultures were reaping the benefits of open, fertile dialogues with one another, Islamic culture froze, petrified and closed itself off to European culture, and now, absurdly, we accuse the Europeans of being infidels.

According to Abdel-Samad, our behavior is tragic: we gobble up everything the infidel West has to offer, whether scientific, technological or medical, without understanding that the train of modernism has passed us by and we have become an annoying burden for the Western world and all humanity in general.

Abdel-Samad paints for us, as Muslims, a pessimistic picture, and says that we will never be able to carry out reforms as long as it is forbidden to criticize the true significance and instructions of the Qur’an. This, he says is what prevents us from moving forward, paralyzes our cognitive processes and kills initiative. Muslims, he continues, sanctify ancient texts and force their thinking uselessly to stagnate. It is hard to disagree. Every Friday we see the dismal sheikhs in Europe and the United States repeating the ancient verses that tell us we are the best people Allah created, while the rest of the world is but riffraff whose very existence as non-Muslims is forbidden. Every Friday we see them huddling together, plotting in secret, hypocritically taking the money we contribute to charity and using it for destruction and terrorism. I am convinced, like Abdel-Samad and other liberal Islamic thinkers, that our nation is schizophrenic because of the great gap between the megalomanic illusions of its self image and our genuine, tragic situation.

It is hard not to agree with Abdel-Samad that our only hope as Muslims depends on whether or not we can come to terms with others, respect their cultural superiority and recognize the advantages of their scientific and technological creativity, which have enriched all mankind. And if we do, genuinely and without concern for our weaknesses, and if we understand the causes of our backwardness and failure, we may be able to cure ourselves. Until then our mistaken, well-intended people will continue to blow themselves up in our streets and kill our own innocent people, all in the name of Islam.

Cardozo Law School’s Honoring of Jimmy Carter Provides an Educational Moment

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

On April 10th, former President Jimmy Carter received the Cardoza Law School’s International Advocate for Peace Award. This produced a firestorm of opposition to Carter receiving the award. Here is an essay by Alan Dershowitz which explains why granting Carter this award was so wrongheaded.

Gatestone Institute
Cardozo Law School’s Honoring of Jimmy Carter Provides an Educational Moment

Alan M. Dershowitz
April 9, 2013

The ill-advised decision by a student-run journal of conflict resolution at the Cardozo Law School to honor Jimmy Carter provides a long overdue opportunity to set the record straight with regard to Carter’s dishonorable history with regard to conflicts.

Carter causes conflicts by encouraging terrorism, supporting some of the most tyrannical regimes in the world, and interfering with American foreign policy.

Let’s begin with the Middle East. In 2000-2001, Jimmy Carter was advising Yasser Arafat, with regard to the ongoing peace negotiations with Israel. President Clinton and Prime Minister Barak had offered the Palestinians a state on more than 95% of the disputed territories, captured by Israel in a defensive war. They also offered Jerusalem as a the capital of that state. Jimmy Carter believed that if Arafat were to accept this generous offer his life would be at risk. He repeated that assessment subsequently in his book Palestine: Peace not Apartheid, in which he wrote “There was no possibility that any Palestinian leader could accept such terms (as the ones offered at Camp David) and survive.” Carter surely shared that assessment with Arafat, who rejected the offer and initiated an intifada in which several thousand Palestinians and Israelis were needlessly killed. The blood of these victims is, at least in part, on the hands of Jimmy Carter. Had he urged Arafat to take the deal, we might now be celebrating a dozen years of peace and a two-state solution.

The blood of Israel’s victims of Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism is also in part on Carter’s hands, since Carter has embraced every Mideast terrorist leader, while showing contempt for democratically elected Israeli leaders. While in Israel in 2008, he visited the grave of his “dear friend” Yasser Arafat, but not the graves of Arafat’s victims or of Yitzhak Rabin.

Nor does he deserve all the credit he has gotten for brokering the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel; that peace, which cost Anwar Sadat his life, is the result of two courageous leaders: Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat, who took enormous risks for peace. Carter almost ruined it by insisting that Egypt not take back the Gaza Strip – a decision that has cost many lives over the past 30 years. While Carter was president, he stood idly by the mass murder of more than 2 million Cambodians by Pol Pot.

Since leaving the presidency Carter has helped build homes for the poor, which deserves commendation. But he has refused to speak out against some of the worst human rights abuses committed by the Saudi regime, which has bought his silence by significant contributions to the Carter Center. While accusing Israel of apartheid, he has allowed Saudi Arabia to escape that description, despite the reality that the Saudis explicitly practice gender, religious, and sexual orientation apartheid.

Perhaps Carter’s worst offense is to have helped the hard left hijack the human rights agenda, and turn it into an ideological tool to be used primarily against America and its western allies.

None of these historical facts will be mentioned by those who bestow the award on Jimmy Carter at Cardozo Law School. But facts are stubborn things and Carter should be confronted with these facts by students in attendance. The students should prepare a leaflet which would tell the truth about Jimmy Carter — he should be asked to respond to these charges in his acceptance speech. He should be challenged to debate his record.

Jimmy Carter does not like conflict or controversy when it’s about him. When Brandeis University invited him to have a discussion with me about his apartheid book, he refused. He likes to spark controversy and stimulate debate, but then he refuses to participate in the debate or respond to the other side of the controversy.

Let the students who disagree with this honor take the high road and respond to half-truths with full truths, to fiction with facts, and to dishonor with honor. Law schools are supposed to be places of debate. So let there be a debate about Jimmy Carter’s dishonorable record in conflict resolution and human rights. Let the students of Cardozo turn this wrongheaded honor into an educational moment, so that Jimmy Carter will regret having accepted this undeserved accolade.

William S. Frankl, MD, All Rights Reserved