Diana West – "Toward a `conservative' foreign policy"

Editor’s Note – This is the written text of an address delivered to the Maryland Conservative Action Network Saturday, January 12, 2013 in Annapolis by Diana West

What might a “conservative” foreign policy look like?

Diana West – Syndicated columnist – Death of the Grown-up

By Diana West – American Thinker

In the post-9/11 era, it’s fair to say we have mainly followed a “neoconservative” foreign policy. This policy has been based on the rock-solid belief that there exist universal values that all peoples everywhere share and indeed yearn for if they don’t already enjoy them. Our neoconservative foreign policy, then – our war-fighting policy, too – has been a matter of spreading such universal values.

This has been a disaster. Think of nation-building in Iraq and Afghanistan — policies predicated on this denial of the existence of cultural difference. Certainly in this decade since 9/11 we should have learned that cultures, the West and Islam, namely, are different and that such universal-ism is a fantasy. The West enshrines the liberty of the individual, while Islam, like other totalitarian systems, enforces a collective will. Still, to this day, we don’t permit this simple reality to be discussed let alone reflected in any meaningful policy way.

The main dissent to neoconservative foreign policy on the Right comes from the libertarian point of view, most popularly expressed by Ron Paul – and not too dissimilarly expressed by President Obama’s nominee for Defense Secretary, Sen. Chuck Hagel. This is the policy of “Come Home, America.”

I, too, subscribe to coming home, America, but with a difference. What I hear from our libertarian friends is that the way to fill the resulting vacuum is with a foreign policy that seeks negotiation and accommodation with Islam. Such a policy, exactly like that of the neo-conservatives, fails to take into account Islamic realities that make such negotiations worse than fruitless, and such accommodations quite dangerous to our liberty.

Hagel and Brennan – Nominees for State and CIA

So, what should a conservative foreign policy that is neither neoconservative nor libertarian look like?

To formulate a conservative alternative, I am starting with love of country. This is not to suggest that any of the other competing voices or views do not represent love of country. But I think it’s essential to start building a new foreign policy from the desire to live by and protect the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

It’s really that simple. My closest allies in the world would be those with compatible philosophical views — what cousins we still have in the Western democracies, Israel, nations fighting jihad such as India. Not Pakistan, and not Saudi Arabia. My conservative foreign policy would therefore require energy independence, beginning immediately with vigorous exploitation of our ingenuity and energy resources. It would also require leaving the United Nations, where an immoral charade of nearly seventy years has permitted rule-of-law democracies to vie with thuggish dictatorships in a rigged wheel that elevates the dictatorships and tarnishes the democracies.

It does nothing for world peace to invite dictators to preen on the world stage in midtown Manhattan. It does nothing for world peace to invite Iran’s Ahmadinejad — or Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah for that matter, or the rest of the OIC nations – into the United States to fulminate against free speech, Israel and other targets of jihad. Better to meet with an international organization of democracies, supporting each other as natural allies – which, of course, would include support for Israel from the U.S. and all other democratic nations facing jihadist aggression as the clock ticks on a nuclear Iran.

But I believe a conservative foreign policy would not, first and foremost, be global in scope or application, but rather designed with the interests of the American people in mind. I have always found it extremely disturbing to listen to US generals such as Gen. Stanley McChrystal discuss “the Afghan people” as the supreme reason for our fighting the war in Afghanistan. We should be fighting for the American people. And who are they again? It’s very simple: those people blessed to be citizens in this land of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, which protects liberty. By default — and this is very important — our rivals, our opponents, and our enemies become those who are hostile to, or try to deprive us of those same liberties, such as freedom of speech.

With these admittedly simple truths in mind it should become easy to perceive how far we have strayed from our small ‘r’ republican values in world affairs. Under George W. Bush we began negotiating with terrorists — al Qaeda insurgents in Iraq; at home, we flouted our own First Amendment as the government sought to create lexicons to discuss Islam without using the terminology of Islam. We created and defended sharia-supreme constitutions in Iraq and Afghanistan. And that was just the beginning. We now go so far as to blame US troops for their own murders as infidels by their Muslim partners.

I don’t know how else to characterize a recent draft of a new Army handbook which cites “ignorance of, or lack of empathy for Muslim and/or Afghan cultural norms” as a cause of so-called insider attacks. Such religious and/or tribalistic norms, it should be noted, include anything from child rape to misogynistic repression to cruelty to dogs. These are “norms” we better hope young Americans in uniform never become empathetic toward.

Their leaders, however, are already lost. In an endless effort to “win” Islamic hearts and minds they have lost their own. By the time “Arab Spring” came along, the US had switched sides altogether. Uncle Sam joined the jihad in Libya. It’s true. It didn’t really register and was rarely discussed, but as the dominoes fell across the Middle East, we found ourselves supporting al Qaeda, other jihadists, and sharia-supremacists from Tunisia to Libya to Egypt, increasingly to Syria and elsewhere.

We have now crashed through the traces of anything resembling an American foreign policy based in love of country.

  • How else to explain the Wikileaks record that shows Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discussing, matter-of-factly, Saudi, Kuwaiti, UAE, Pakistani, Qatari financial support for jihadists everywhere even as the US government (and business) clings to the Big Lie that these totalitarian nations are allies in counter-terrorism?
  • Or the Wikileaks record of our late Ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, back in 2008 trying to think through a way to work with jihadists who might well have just returned from killing Americans in Iraq?
  • How else to explain the barely remarked upon shipment this month of F-16s to the Muslim Brotherhood government of Mohammed Morsi?
  • How else to explain Hillary Clinton’s working hand in glove with the Islamic bloc to criminalize blasphemy – criticism of Islam – via the “Istanbul Process” and promising to arrest and prosecute a video-maker in retribution for the terror attacks on the US compound in Benghazi?
  • And why — why — did the Obama administration lie for two weeks to the effect that lawfully protected free speech in America had caused the terrorist attack in Benghazi?
  • Where is our America of the First Amendment when the President of United States tells the UN General Assembly that “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam”? 
  • And why didn’t Mitt Romney ask any of these questions? (That’s another story.)

Perhaps worst of all of these things is hearing sincere, brave Americans in uniform tell reporters they are fighting — nation-building, mentoring, etc. — abroad to protect our liberties at home. Is that true? If it ever was true, did it stay true? Do their sacrifices really protect liberty at home? Do our leaders ever ask themselves these questions?

There has been what we might think of as Big Bang at the leadership level in which American interests have been blown to smithereens.

So how do we put them together for a new century? Where does a conservative foreign policy begin? All foreign policy begins at the border, and clearly our policy at the border shows no love of country. Our borders, even more than a decade after 9/11, are still open. We have plenty of National Guard units who could help, but they are patrolling roads and borders in Afghanistan — and losing life and limbs to IEDs while they’re at it. Meanwhile, all manner of hostile actors and dangerous materiel, illegals aliens, slip across US borders. Does that make sense? Not with love of country in mind.

Regarding the more bureaucratic aspect of border security, that first line of our foreign policy, we have an immigration system that legally opens our borders to tens of thousands of people every year from cultures that inculcate an aversion or even hostility to the rights and responsibilities inherent to the American people, we, citizens guided by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. For example, Pew polling last year told us that 75 percent of Hispanics (the ethnic group, of course, that constitutes the largest bloc of immigrants, illegal, legal and perhaps soon-to-be-amnestied) want bigger government with more services, while 41 percent of the American people overall wanted the same. This sentiment bodes ill for smaller, limited government — Constitutional government — at the voting box in the future, as it did in the last election.

The teachings of Islamic law, which Muslims hold supreme above all other law, clash directly with Article 6 of the US Constitution, which holds that the US Constitution shall be the supreme law of the land. And that is a break point even without mentioning the many laws and beliefs of Islam that are directly at odds with our laws and liberties. Given that we are a democratic country, and that demographics become democratic destiny, do these immigration policies make sense? Not with love of country in mind.

But there’s another problem. One of the strangest phenomena of the past presidential campaign was the extent to which foreign policy of any kind went unaddressed even though we had just ended one disastrous war in Iraq, and were in the midst of another such disastrous war in Afghanistan, making headlines all summer long for so-called “insider” killings — the murders “inside the wire” of Westerners, mainly Americans, by their Afghan “partners.” Neither candidate running for commander-in-chief ever addressed the issue, which, in itself, is shameful. But it also illustrates the unbroken nature of the official silence.

I wonder how many people here remember that on Dec. 31, 2011, Iraq’s Nouri al-Maliki declared a national holiday to celebrate the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. He wasn’t saying thank you. The prime minister, as the AP reported, was “trying to credit Iraqis with the overthrow of Saddam Hussein and made no mention of the role played by U.S. forces.”

It was all just a dream, just a trillion-dollar mirage. Who doesn’t believe our efforts in Afghanistan will one day soon be just as much a gigantic non-event?

I noted at the time that this Iraqi silence suited the American political classes just fine. Our withdrawal after more than 8 years of fighting prompted no such questions as: “What was that all about?” or, “What went wrong in Iraq?” Or even: “Did something go wrong in Iraq?”  And never: “Is it really a good idea to replicate the nation-building counterinsurgency of Iraq in Afghanistan”? Any scant discussion during the Republican primaries was over by the time of the general campaign between President Obama and Mitt Romney. There was no talk of foreign policy, period. At the final “foreign policy” debate between the two candidates, Romney spent most of the time agreeing with Obama.

Perhaps this lack of debate is not surprising, given the continuity between Republican and Democratic White Houses in prosecuting these wars. Indeed, there is a continuum of sorts to be seen extending from 9/11 to “Arab Spring,” which, not incidentally, former President Bush has openly applauded as a phase in his so-called freedom agenda.

But sharia-supreme constitutions — exactly what we fostered and spent blood and treasure to defend in Iraq and Afghanistan and now see emerging in Libya, Egypt and elsewhere — are not “free.” Not in the Western understanding of “freedom.” The Islamic understanding is totally different — sometimes defined as “perfect enslavement to Allah,” which surely is not what neoconservative “universalists” or libertarians have in mind. It is exactly such break-points of culture-clash, these glossed-over flaws in our policy-making, that we must begin to confront if we are to work our way to a more successful policy.

Some of the obstacles include:

  1. A bifurcated culture. Our military and society-at-large exist separately. Military culture has become both professional and self-perpetuating, with children of military parents joining the service, creating an excellent but almost foreign-legion-like force. Surely a a national draft would seem to be the democratic corrective to endless war – but I hesitate to advocate increased federal powers. I would much prefer to see serious and engaged Congressional oversight – better-functioning checks and balances – in our foreign policy. Obama was able to run rough-shod over Congress regarding Libya, for example. Congress has the power of the purse to defund a president running amok, and they should be encouraged to do so. It is also time to end the cult of the general on Capitol Hill, which permitted losing military strategies to go unquestioned in hearings.
  2. Too much secrecy and presidential fiat in foreign-policy-making. Since FDR’s time, American foreign policy has been more or less conducted by the White House, at the historical expense of both traditional treaty-making and senatorial oversight. This, too, must change to bring about a more conservative foreign policy. Our mindset as citizens, however, has become quite abject on this point. Note the general reaction to the vast majority of Wikileaks cables, which are of the lowest classification — “classified” or “confidential.” (Only a small slice was “secret” and I haven’t yet found evidence of real damage from them.) There was and is a widespread sense that We, the People, shouldn’t be allowed to see this evidence of instances of lying, ineptitude and concession by our public servants. A free people, I submit, would instead feel outrage.
  3. Islam. The main obstacle to natural debate about US foreign policy is we’re even more uncomfortable discussing Islam than ever. Since so much foreign policy in our time deals with the Islamic world, we must get over such childishness.

While we dither in embarrassed silence, the world is changing and our liberties are shrinking. Before it is too late — and I hope it still is not too late — we need to consider seriously the notion that the war that has fallen to our generation is not the war we have been fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan and perhaps Syria and Mali. It certainly isn’t the war for “hearts and “minds in the Islamic world, as our presidents and generals have been telling us since 9/11. It is not our mission or our place to bring Western-style liberty to the world Islam.

It is, however, up to us to save liberty at home — for love of country. The war we must gear up to fight to save our country and protect its Constitution and the Bill of Rights is the war against sharia. Not in the Islamic world but here in America and across the wider West. So, yes, I reject the neoconservative foreign policy and agree with the libertarians that it is time to come home — to leave Afghanistan as soon and as completely as possible, blowing up what we can’t take with us, as a former Green Beret friend has suggested to me, but armed with knowledge that the most important fight is still ahead. Liberty is imperiled, right in our own backyard.

Benghazi Report – White Wash and White-Out

Editor’s Note – The report is out and America is supposed to be happy – we finally know! Or do we? Of course not – this report is not worth the paper it is printed on – the cover-up continues. Yet, three people just resigned over its release, guess who:

The State Department’s security chief and two others are resigning after an independent review of the U.S. Consulate attacks in Benghazi, Libya blasted “systemic failures and leadership and management deficiencies,” in the department, an official told the Associated Press on Wednesday.

The AP reports that Eric Boswell, the assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, and his deputy Charlene Lamb, who was responsible for embassy security, have resigned. A third unnamed official from the Middle East bureau also stepped down. The resignations came “under pressure,” according to the AP, after the report’s release. (Read more here at Slate.)

From day one of the original hearings, it was easy to see who was going to take the fall. Read the report here.

But we need $1.6 Billion to fix it? Fix what exactly? The void in decision making, the void in lying about a video, the lying about no one said ‘not to rescue Americans’? Just what are we fixing? Does that mean there is pork in that money request and are we going to stay in Libya?

Really folks? We are supposed to believe this “independent” tripe? As usual, Diana West has broken it down into bite size chunks so you do not have to choke on it all at once:

Benghazi White-Out

By Diana West

The “independent” Benghazi Report has concluded the White House remained in the dark.

The Benghazi Report is out and it’s official: President Obama, SecState Hillary Clinton, CIA Director Petraeus all had nothing to do with the US government response to the attack on the US mission in Benghazi. Indeed, the names Obama, Clinton, Petraeus, Panetta, Rice do not appear anywhere in its 39 pages. DoD — Panetta? — however, is singled out for having deployed unarmed drones that, for example, “provided visual surveillance during the evacuation.”

Hooray?

The red flags didn’t go up over this so-called investigation for nothing. The White House isn’t just whitewashed in the report, it’s whited-out.

Here, for example, is how the report on Benghazi sums up the US government response.

Upon    notification   of    the    attack  from the TDY  RSO  (temporary regional  security officer in  Benghazi)  around  2145  local (9:45 pm) , Embassy Tripoli set up a command center and notified Washington.

What “Washington” said or did next we never find out.

About 2150 local (9:50 pm), the DCM (deputy chief    of   mission) was able to reach Ambassador Stevens, who briefly reported that  the SMC (mission) was under attack before the call cut off. The Embassy notified Benina Airbase in Benghazi of a potential need for logistic support and aircraft  for extraction and received full cooperation. The DCM (deputy chief of mission) contacted the Libyan Presidentand Prime Minister’s offices to urge  them  to  mobilize a rescue effort, and kept Washington apprised of post’s efforts.

The Embassy also reached out to Libyan Air  Force and  Armed  Forces contacts, February 17 leadership, and UN and  third country embassies, among others.

Isn’t it just too bad that “Washington” had no armed forces “contacts” of its own and thus had to rely on the Embassy “reaching out” to Libyan shadow-government forces and jihadists for assistance? Meanwhile, it would be helpful to know what, if anything, the Embassy asked of the UN and “third country embassies” in “reaching out” — so, naturally, the report doesn’t include that information, either. One tiny bit of news to chew on is that about a half an hour after the 19:40 departure of the Turkish diplomat (Ali Akin)  — which jibes with the Turkish timeline, if not the initial State Department timeline — a British security team stopped by the US mission.

Between 2010  and  2030  local, a  UK  security team supporting  a  day  visit  by  British diplomats dropped off vehicles and equipment at the SMC (per arrangements made after  the UK diplomatic office in Benghazi suspended operations in June  2012).When  the UK  security  team departed via the C1 gate at about  2030  local, there were no signs  of  anything  unusual, including  no  roadblocks  outside  of  the  c ompound, and traffic   flowed  normally. …

Another item previously unnoted is that on the afternoon of September 10, Ambassador Stevens went to the Annex — never i.d.’d in the report as a CIA installation — for a briefing.

Back to the US response to the attack under way. The report correctly defines this response as “Embassy Tripoli Response” since “Washington” had nothing to do with anything.

Within hours, Embassy Tripoli chartered a private airplane and deployed a seven-person security team, which  included  two U.S. military personnel, to Benghazi.

No mention of take-off time.

At  the direction of  the U.S. military’s Africa Command (AFRICOM), DoD moved a remotely piloted, unarmed surveillance aircraft which arrived over the SMC shortly before the DS (diplomatic security) team departed (for the Annex). A second remotely piloted, unarmed surveillance  aircraft  relieved the first, and monitored the eventual evacuation of personnel from the Annex to Benghazi airport later on the morning of September 12.

End of US government response to the attack itself. That’s it. Nonetheless, it isLibya that the report finds fault with. In its findings section, the report says:

The Libyan response fell short in the face of a series of attacks that began with the sudden penetration of the Special Mission compound by dozens of armed attackers.The Board found the responses by both the BML (Blue Mountain contractors) guards and February 17 to be inadequate. The Board’s inquiry found little evidence that the armed February 17 guards offered any meaningful defense of the SMC (mission), or succeeded in summoning a February 17 militia presence to assist expeditiously.

There is no discussion of why this could be — the jihadist culture in which “February 17” and, indeed, all of Benghazi and eastern Libya more generally  is steeped — no comprehension such a culture could be at odds with U.S. interests.

The Board  found the Libyan government’s response to be profoundly lackingon the night of the attacks …

But not the US government’s response.

The board also takes a whack at intelligence, an easy shot with the publicly disgraced Petraeus already past expendable.

The Board found  that intelligence provided no immediate, specific warning of the September 11 attack.

That Zawaheri video on 9/9 and 9/10 calling on Libyans to avenge the US killing of a Libyan Al Qaeda leader was not on intelligence’s radar. Why not? No answer. Come to think of it, no question, either.

Then this tortured apology for jihad-denial in intelligence and everywhere in the US government:

Known gaps existed in the intelligence community’s understanding of extremist militias in Libya and the potential threat they posed to U.S. interests, although some threats were known to exist.

Herein lies a rich vein for investigation, of course, which makes it radioactive for any “independent” investigation. But keep in it mind on reading through the report’s section called  “Attack on the Annex.”

Just  before midnight,  shortly after  the  DS and Annex security teams arrived from the SMC (US mission),  the  Annex  began to be targeted by gunfire and RPGs, which continued intermittently for an hour. Annex security personnel engaged from their defensive positions, which were reinforced by DS agents. Other personnel remained in contact with Embassy Tripoli from the Annex.

The seven-person response team from  Embassy Tripoli  arrived  in  Benghazi to lend support.

She’s guilty, he is cleared – bunk!

What time was that? The report doesn’t say. We know from press reports that they were met at the airport by members of the Libya Shield militia, which is led by jihadist Wissam bin Hamid (not mentioned, of course). He is a poster boy for “known gaps” in the US government’s understanding of threats to U.S. interests.

The response team then spent precious time (hours) wrangling with Libya Shield over their conduct into Benghazi. From the CIA timeline, we know that the ragtag team did not go to the hospital to recover Amb. Stevens’ body specifically because “it was surrounded by the Al Qaeda linked Ansar-al Sharia militia that mounted the attack.” That decision is pegged to 1:15 am.

Back to the report:

It (that seven-“person” response team) arrived at the Annex about 0500 local.

Almost 4 hours later. Not a word on what held them up for all that time.

Less than fifteen minutes later,  the  Annex  came under  mortar and  RPG  attack, with five mortar rounds impacting close together in under 90 seconds.

Could our Libya Shield “allies” have had anything to do with the timing or accuracy of the attack? Not considered (mentioned) in the report.

Three rounds hit the roof of an Annex building, killing security officers Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty.

When?

The attack  also severely injured one  ARSO   and   one  Annex  security  team   member.  Annex, Tripoli, and ARSO security team members at other locations  moved  rapidly to provide combat   first aid to the injured.

At approximately 0630 local, all U.S. government personnel evacuated with support from a quasi-governmental Libyan militia.

All of a sudden, it’s 6:30 am. Was fighting continuous?

They arrived at the airportwithout incident. The DoD unarmed surveillance aircraft provided visual oversight during the evacuation.

All hail the American drone.

Embassy Tripoli lost communication with the convoy atone point during transit, but quickly regained it. Evacuees, including all wounded personnel, departed Benghazi on thechartered jet at approximately 0730 local.

How many? And why can’t Rep. Chaffetz (R-UT) talk to them?

Embassy Tripoli staff, including the Embassy nurse, met the first evacuation flight at Tripoli International Airport.Wounded personnel were transferred to a local hospital, in exemplary coordination   that   helped save the lives of    two   severely injured Americans.

Embassy Tripoli worked with the Libyan government to have a Libyan Air Force C-130 take the remaining U.S. government personnel from Benghazi toTripoli. Two American citizen State Department contractors traveled to the airport and linked up with the remaining U.S. government personnel.

While awaiting transport, the TDY RSO and Annex personnel continued to reach out to Libyan  contacts to coordinate the transport of the presumed remains of AmbassadorStevens to the airport. The body was brought to the airport in what appeared to be a local ambulance  at  0825    local, and the TDY RSO verified Ambassador Stevens’identity.

So, Americans didn’t retrieve Stevens’ body, even on the morning after.

At 1130 local, September 12, 2012, the Libyan government-provided C-130 evacuation flight landed in Tripoli with the last U.S. government personnel from Benghazi and the remains of the four Americans killed, who were transported to a local hospital.   In coordination with the State Department and Embassy Tripoli, the Department of Defense sent two U.S. Air Force planes (a C-17 and a C-130) from  Germany to Tripoli to provide medical evacuation support for the wounded.

At 1915   local (7:15 pm)  on September 12, Embassy Tripoli evacuees, Benghazi personnel, and those wounded in the   attacks departed Tripoli on the C-17 aircraft, with military doctors and nurses aboard providing en route medical care to the injured.

Still no word on numbers of wounded.

The  aircraft arrived at Ramstein Air Force Base at approximately 2230 (Tripoli time) (10:30 pm) on September 12, just over 24 hours after the attacks in Benghazi had commenced.

Is there just a tremor of triumphalism in that last “just over 24 hours” comment? If so, it is misplaced, to say the least, in a report so narrowly focused as to avert any notice of the real Benghazi scandal that took place that night in Washington.

Meanwhile, something else is missing from the report. The Youtube video. “Innocence of Muslims.” The Benghazi “protest” over the video that the President harped on as a “natural” reaction for two weeks up to and including his anti-Islamic blasphemy UN address on September 25.

“The Board concluded that there was no protest prior to the attacks.”

The unasked $64,000 question remains: Why did the Obama administration — Obama, Hillary, Petraeus, Rice — lie to the American people and the world (and, in Petraeus’ case, to Congress) that it was free speech about Islam that led to “protests” that led to the attack?

Disowning the Truth – It matters little inside the 'beltway'

Editor’s Note – By now, even the most ardent nay-sayer of so-called ‘Birthers’ must admit, this Obama document fraud issue, and ignoring the eligibility question stinks to the high heavens. In the privacy of their own abodes they surely must admit it when they look in the mirror in the morning.

Obama is a fake, a fraud, and a usurper of the Oval Office. Most are afraid to say anything in public for fear that when the truth is finally out in the cleansing freshness of the sun light on a clear crisp day, people may remember what the pundits said long before.

Who committed the fraud...and was it condoned?

People will remember the disparaging remarks, the demogoguery, the patronizing tones, and the fact that they were too afraid to touch this third-rail. Why? Because they were and are, afraid of being lumped in with the very people they besmirched. Reputations have been sullied, and now, its a big CYA to protect their own.

Disowning Birth Certificates, Disowning Truth

By Diana West – Death of the Grown-up

Below is this week’s syndicated column: “Is Obama Disowning His Online Birth Certificate?” It takes in the shifting strategy of the Obama defense team in fending off challenges to Obama’s eligibility to appear on presidential primary ballots. Obama’s eligibility is a signal concern for the nation which should be the subject of informed, serious debate on the front pages, on news shows, and also, most important, in the Congress. Such debate is non-existent. Such concern is non-existent, too. It doesn’t seem to matter to the citizenry that a fraudster may be completing one term in the White House while seeking another.

I recently had the occasion to discuss the matter with a very famous American conversative.

Famouse Conservative said to me: Tell me what columns of yours are getting a big response lately.

I had earlier written this column about the Georgia ballot challenge hearing in which President Obama ignored a subpoena for the certified copy of his birth certificate (among other documents). This column elicited a great response from readers, many of whom asked me the same question: why this important story wasn’t being covered in the media.

They’re really interested in this whole eligibility story, I said.

Famous Conservative: I’ll bet they are.

Me: Aren’t you?

FC: No.

Me: No? Why aren’t you?

FC: If this were happening back at the time of the election, maybe.

I told FC  this is an election (ding-dong).

FC: Exactly. But this will alienate the people we need to defeat him at the polls.

I made some naive-sounding comment (which I thoroughly subscribe to) about the seeking the truth regardless of the outcome, adding that the truth would likely alienate plenty of people from Obama, too.

Impasse.

New tack for Famous Conservative: If this were true, why hasn’t Rush or Hannity taken it on?

Me:  They’re afraid.

FC: (Scoffs.)

Me: Look, Rush won’t talk about a lot of things: Islamization, for one. Sharia. Muslim Brotherood, those kinds of things. He has a comfort zone.

FC: (Disbelief.)

Impasse.

FC: Well, maybe if some respected conservative journalist were to examine the story —

Me: (What am I, chopped liver?) Who, for instance?

FC: John Fund, Daniel Henniger …

Hey boys, have at it. But there’s a problem. According to the FC (1) the truth will alienate voters so we mustn’t seek the truth; and (2) it can’t be true anyway because otherwise Rush, Sean, John and Dan would be all over the story. Of course, if FC’s conservative journalists subscribe to #1 or some variation thereon as partisans or Republicans, we’ll never get to #2. Meanwhile, across the journalistic aisle, the MSM has the another, equally heavy stake in preventing the truth from outing. They want Obama re-elected.

What’s wrong with this picture? Conservative logic, conservative morality.

Needless to say, I didn’t make any inroads with FC although FC’s spouse shares my concern in the subject, so that’s something.

——-

The column:

Almost exactly one year ago – with Donald Trump on top of presidential polls and author Jerome Corsi on top of Amazon’s best-seller list, both for asking where President Barack Obama’s “real” birth certificate was – Judith Corley, the president’s personal attorney, flew to Hawaii. She went there to pick up two certified copies of the president’s long-form birth certificate from the Hawaii Department of Health.

At least, that’s what then-White House Counsel Robert Bauer told us last April 27 at a White House press briefing called to unveil the new, certified document. Multiple copies were passed out to the press, while NBC’s Savannah Guthrie became the one witness I know of to touch the certified document. (She reported she “felt the raised seal.”) A computer image of this Obama long-form birth certificate appeared on the White House website, where now you and I can download it for ourselves as proof of the president’s bona fides.

Or is it?

It is this same Internet image that the Cold Case Posse, a group of lawyers and former law enforcement professionals assembled by Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio to vet Obama’s identity documents, has concluded is most likely a forgery. At its March 1 press conference, the posse further explained that it believed the online imageoriginated as a computer file. In other words, a paper document did not exist before the image appeared on the White House website.

If the posse’s mind-blowing findings are correct, what is it that Judith Corley couriered back to Washington? And what is it that Savannah Guthrie touched?

I find such questions most intriguing – even if the rest of the media do not – particularly after last week’s court hearing into Obama’s eligibility to appear on the ballot in the New Jersey presidential primary. After literally dozens of such eligibility cases since 2008 (evidently, the media are waiting for a discernible story trend to emerge before they pounce), I can report, having watched a video of the New Jersey hearing online, that the president’s team is making progress. Only now it’s away from his long-form birth certificate.

The curious fact is, President Obama’s attorney, Alexandra Hill, couldn’t have been more adamant about not citing the online birth certificate as a means of proving the president’s identity in this recent challenge – and after everyone went to so much trouble to get it! Indeed, she called the Internet image “legally irrelevant,” arguing that New Jersey law doesn’t specifically call for a birth certificate to qualify a presidential candidate for the ballot.

Exactly how a presidential candidate demonstrates he is at least 35 years old and “natural born,” the constitutional requirement New Jersey upholds, Hill didn’t say, but Administrative Law Judge Jeff Masin found her arguments persuasive to the point of preventing an expert witness from offering testimony that the online image is a forgery.

Even though the Obama team entered no documentation of the president’s identity into the record – not even that “certified” birth document Obama’s personal lawyer traveled so far to retrieve – Judge Masin managed to find that the president was both born in Hawaii and “natural born.”

Neat, huh? But note the shift in legal tactics. If, in New Jersey, the online birth certificate was “legally irrelevant,” in January’s Georgia eligibility hearing, the president’s lawyer, Michael Jablonski, considered it legally decisive. Jablonski cited “the documents evidencing the birth of President Obama” that are available online to try to quash a subpoena that “commanded” Obama to come to court and bring “any and all birth records” with him (among other documents).

A golden opportunity to show off that certified, hand-couriered birth doc from Hawaii, and be done with it, no? No. When Administrative Law Judge Michael Malihi refused to quash the subpoena, Jablonski and Obama ignored it. They just didn’t show up. Not to worry: Flouted subpoena and all, and without any evidence from the Obama team, Judge Malihi found that the president was both born in Hawaii and “natural born,” too.

Amazing how that works, and no matter what the president’s lawyers do – so long as they don’t enter tangible evidence of the president’s identity into the court record.

As for that new birth certificate that came online last April? Since government and media have abdicated their responsibility to help determine whether it’s the real McCoy or a forgery, what else is there to do but wish it a happy first birthday?

America's Full-Blown Dhimmitude – Diana West

Diana West asks why in the world U.S. apologized for burning Qurans

By Diana West

WND

I’ve got it.

Diana West

After all these years of official stumbling over what to call the mission the United States has spearheaded in the Islamic world in response to the 9/11 attacks, I’ve come up with a name – not to brag or anything – that I believe brings much-needed clarity to our cause.

We’ve come a long way since the days of the Global War on Terror. Frankly, the GWOT – whatever that was supposed to mean (how do you fight against a tactic?) – is so 10 years ago. “Terror,” meanwhile, has morphed into “extremism,” but that’s only made things more unclear. We still don’t know what it’s all supposed to be about.

Until today.

Mr. and Mrs. America, boys and girls, welcome to the Global War on Quran-Burning, as led by the United States Masochists To Make the World Safe for Shariah (Islamic law).

If a column could have special effects, this is where piercing beams of sunlight would dispel clouds of confusion as pink bunnies jump up and down, squeaking, “That’s it, that’s it!” And a sigh of relief would spread across the happy valley …

Or would it? If my title for the war our country has engaged us in is apt, have I described a cause most Americans support? I don’t think so, but, of course, I don’t claim to know the answer. That’s partly because I see no upset in the land over the latest and greatest display of American dhimmitude – the subservient state of Jews and Christians in thrall to Islamic law – that we have witnessed in Afghanistan all week. Afghan Muslims have convulsed in rioting and killing (among other fatalities, two U.S. military personnel have been murdered by an Afghan army member) on word that Qurans and other religious materials were disposed of on a U.S. military base after authorities discovered the books were being used at Parwan prison in what the BBC said may have been “a secret Taliban message system.”

You didn’t hear about that last part? I’m not surprised. This crucial piece of the story – the logical reason for the books’ destruction – is treated by the media, and also by the U.S. government, as secondary material. At least one unnamed “U.S. official” imparted this part of the story to the press (Reuters and AFP); unnamed “Afghan officials” have told the BBC the same thing. Judging by the gingerly way this news is being handled, it almost seems as if the perfectly logical rationale for the disposal of these materials is regarded as an embarrassment.

Not so the outrageous, primitive response of rioting Muslims. In our state of abject apology, we have, in effect, condoned this murderous behavior according to the Islamic rules governing treatment of the Quran. This isn’t just political correctness run amok; it’s open submission to Islamic law. After all, the Quran is an inanimate object, a thing, cheaply printed and distributed by the gazillion, often by Saudi Arabia. We – if by “we” I may still refer to the Judeo-Christian-humanist world – do not rampage and shoot people when an inanimate object, a thing, even a Bible, is torn, written on or thrown away. In fact, we have constitutional rights to do all of those things as a matter of free speech.

Nonetheless, we as a nation – spilling blood for the “noble people of Afghanistan,” as top commander Marine Gen. John R. Allen says in his prostration video – have deemed it vital to accommodate, apologize, slurp and scrape to those who do. Equally as tragic, in the frenzy to apologize, the logic behind throwing the stuff away has been sacrificed. Reason itself has been discarded in a shameful and irrational act of fealty. This isn’t just dysfunctional behavior. This is full-blown dhimmitude.

Sorry to disappoint the pink bunnies.

Diana West – Afghans clueless after training – waste of resources

Editor’s Note – File this under outrage, and this outrage is expensive beyond definition. The United States along with NATO members continue to provide hard asset support, material support, and training to Afghanistan yet, no one knows what to do next.

Providing Afghanistan with weapons is one thing, but who knows how to operate them? Where is the training and what is Karzai taking responsibility for? He has not stepped up to assume full control of his state and the United States continues to fill the gaps with money and blood.

This debacle falls to Hillary Clinton and Leon Panetta without question. As a result, it may come down to the militarized CIA to operate and lead the unending mess in the Middle East at our exclusive cost.

Afghans “Have No Clue How to Operate NATO Weapons”

Accuracy in Media

By Diana West

Dementia advances in Afghanistan, courtesy the US taxpayer, who spent about $12 billion on training Afghans between October 2010 and September 2011. Not that it stopped there: $11 billion is pledged for the year ahead through September 2012.

Just think how many perfectly gorgeous Standard Poodles you could train for $23 billion dollars. And the world would be a better place….

On a recent graduation day for over 1,000 Afghan army soldiers, Reuters reports the alarming thoughts of Amlaqullah Patyani, the Afghan general in charge of all Afghan training.

Surveying his new soldiers, Patyani said:

“We have no clue how to operate the weapons that NATO gives us. And even if we did, will the weapons keep coming after 2014?” …

This is not a joke, not a satire. It’s the gigantic Afghani$tan $candal, but it’s dying alone, deprived of media oxygen in the tabloid atmosphere dominated by Herman Cain accusers and moral turpitude in the Penn State Football office.

One example given by recruits is the complex computer system used to operate Stryker armored fighting vehicles that cost around $4 million each.

Many new recruits assigned to master the system lack basic numeral skills and are unable to read the Latin script used inside.

But NATO is racing against the clock to train Afghanistan’s police and army forces expected to reach 350,000-strong in order to take over fighting in an increasingly violent war, a project seen as crucial for the country to battle insurgents on its own. …

What time is it when the clock strikes 13?

But with all the money, and over 130,000 foreign troops in the country, the mission is missing hundreds of trainers.

The 1,810-strong training force says it has commitments for another 510 troops “in the near future”, and is also trying to recruit another 480 mentors — suggesting around one-third of posts are currently open.

But finding the right skills has almost nothing to do with how much money there is or how many soldiers are in the country, NATO training mission officials say.

Air force trainers are especially needed, as are finding volunteers or spare personnel with the patience and other skills needed to mold raw and sometimes illiterate recruits into military professionals.

No problem.

But senior U.S. military officials admit that money has not always been spent in the wisest ways.

“We have received an awful lot of money from the U.S. government. We need to use it differently now,” said U.S. Army Major General Peter Fuller, deputy commander for programs and resources within the NATO training mission.

That would be the same US general who was recently fired for voicing his frustration that Hamid Karzai said, among other things, that he would support Pakistan in a war with the USA. Any peep from the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department on Karzai’s latest outrage?

Another U.S. official in Kabul, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the mission was buying up high-tech equipment to satisfy Washington, while more basic needs were ignored.

The mismatch between skills and high-tech equipment has even prompted Afghan President Hamid Karzai to make a plea for a focus on sustainable training.

“This could get problematic,” said Major General Aminullah Karim, who oversees the army’s education and training.

“We need the training to be completely Afghan-led and a success. And there must be enough NATO mentors for this,” he told Reuters at the sprawling Kabul Military Training Centre (KMTC) just outside the capital.

Isn’t “completely Afghan-led” training and “enough NATO mentors” a contradiction?

Never mind. Wonder how much “sprawling” cost?

NATO and Afghan officials envision the 350,000 strong force as being roughly divided equally between the army and police, though analysts say the police are becoming a paramilitary force who do not protect civilians from the scourge of daily crime.

Longer term, there are questions about how much the West will stump up for Afghanistan’s army. The Afghan government hopes vast copper and iron ore mines will one day pay its bills, but they are in very early stages of development and will not bear fruit for years.

Should be US or even NATO property until accounts are paid in full, plus an endowment to care for wounded warriors in perpetuity.

Afghanistan’s Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak said in October that a full Afghan national security force including army and police would cost about $5 billion a year.

But sources later said that Western powers are contemplating funding a security force smaller than the envisaged 350,000 men, as they grapple with shrinking government budgets at home.

The scenario Afghanistan’s senior generals face now is not entirely new. The Soviet Union’s exit strategy in its 1980s war was also to train Afghan forces.

The Americans are acutely aware of the comparison to their Cold War foe, said U.S. Army General William Caldwell as he traveled aboard a helicopter on the outskirts of Kabul.

Below he eyed the sandy Soviet-built KMTC training ground strewn with derelict and rusted troop carriers and wreckage from the war which lost the Soviet Union 15,000 soldiers. Three years after Moscow stopped fighting in 1989, its training was halted.

“The Soviet Union built a great air force and army which was very well-equipped. But a few years later, it collapsed,” said Caldwell, who has overseen all NATO training in Afghanistan for the past two years.

Caldwell said Moscow failed because its training never transitioned into being Afghan-led, eventually paving the way for the Taliban’s rise to power in 1996.

Hey, how about Karzai? Sure, he’ll lead the Afghan army against the USA — but it won’t matter because they can’t run the tanks and guns we give them, anyway.

Now, that’s a sneaky strategy.