Monday, June 30, 2014


- my friend Tom Trento of The United West on hearing of the killing of the 3 Israeli teens...and how right he is!

Israeli PM Calls Killers of Three Israeli Teens 'Human Animals'

PHOTO: People gather for a vigil for the three Israeli teens outside of the Israeli Consulate on June 16, 2014 in New York City.
The bodies of three Israeli teenagers who were kidnapped in the West Bank earlier this month have been found north-west of the city of Hebron, Israeli officials confirmed today. 

The discovery of the bodies drew a strong rebuke from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

"With heavy grief, this evening we found three bodies. All signs indicate that they are the bodies of our three abducted youths –- Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar and Naftali Frankel," Netanyahu said before the start of an emergency cabinet meeting. 

"They were abducted and murdered in cold blood by human animals. On behalf of the entire Jewish people, I would like to tell the dear families –- the mothers, fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers, and brothers and sisters –- we are deeply saddened, the entire nation weeps with you. We will give the boys a proper burial." 

Then the prime minister quoted Israeli poet Hayim Nahman Bialik. "'Vengeance for the blood of a small child, Satan has not yet created,'" he said. "[N]either has vengeance for the blood of three pure youths, who were on their way home to meet their parents, who will not see them anymore. Hamas is responsible –- and Hamas will pay. May the memories of the three boys be blessed." 

The Israeli Defense Forces said in a statement earlier today that the "bodies are currently going through forensic identification. The families of the abducted teens have been notified." 

Hamas, the Palestinian militant group accused by Israel of taking the boys, has denied kidnapping the teens, though senior Israeli and Palestinian officials agree that the abductors were likely tied to -- or part of -- Hamas but operating without orders from the organization's leadership. 

One of the teens, 16-year-old Naftali Frenkel, had dual U.S.-Israeli citizenship and his family is from Brooklyn, N.Y. 

Israeli forces have conducted raids in the West Bank in the search for the teens and their kidnappers since they were abducted on June 12. Since the search started, more than 240 Palestinians have been arrested in the operation dubbed "Brother's Keeper," the army said. 

Knesset sessions for tonight have been cancelled, according to Israeli media reports.
PHOTO: Eyal Ylfrah, Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Shaer, are seen in these undated photos. Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
PHOTO: Eyal Ylfrah, Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Sha'er, are seen in these undated photos. 
There are reports that Israeli soldiers have already been deployed in Hebron, and Israeli TV stations earlier showed pictures of soldiers searching through rubble and military vehicles moving through the village of Halhul, just north of Hebron. 

At the end of a White House press briefing, Press Secretary Josh Earnest was asked about the report of the deaths, news of which broke in the middle of the briefing. 

“We obviously condemn in the strongest possible term, violence that takes the lives of innocent civilians,” he said. “But I don’t want to react any further without having a chance to take a look at that report myself.” 

The State Department briefing began about 20 minutes after news broke of the Israeli teenagers’ bodies being found. 

Spokesperson Jen Psaki urged "continued security cooperation” between the Israelis and Palestinians, despite "the tragedy and the enormous pain on the ground as a result." 

She would not speculate on how the U.S. interaction with the new Palestinian unity government might change in light of this news. 

ABC News' Ali Weinberg contributed to this report.


By: Diane Sori

BREAKING NEWS...The SCOTUS rules 5 to 4 in FAVOR of Hobby Lobby...I repeat the SCOTUS has ruled in FAVOR of Hobby Lobby!!! The SCOTUS also ruled in-home caretakers do NOT...I repeat NOT...have to join unions or pay dues to unions they do NOT belong to. 

Justice Alito wrote both decision. 

We scored two today...things are starting to change folks...they are finally starting to change! 


Is the key to the IRS scandal hiding in Russia...part 3 of 3 
By: Diane Sori and Craig Andresen

As more testimony is given in the IRS scandal it's becoming obvious that the missing e-mails could very well be the key to collapsing the entire Obama administration, but it first must be understood that the IRS e-mails were NOT being secured because the IRS did NOT want them to be secured...period.

And why...because e-mail messages are considered official documents and can be offered as evidence in court and therefore can be legally binding...especially e-mails regarding the transaction of official business...of IRS business.

And the missing e-mails in question needed to be destroyed because...we believe ...they contained evidence that the IRS...a supposed nonpartisan government agency...knowingly engaged in criminal activities to cover for the actions of Barack HUSSEIN Obama as explained in part 2 of this investigative report ( We also believe that NSA whistle blower Edward Snowden could also have noticed something was amiss at the IRS especially concerning e-mail correspondence...and with his vast computer expertise he could have 'secured' copies of those e-mails for himself out of fear such incriminating e-mails would go missing...which indeed they outlined in part 1 of this report (
Now what everyone needs to understand is how the IRS...a mega-agency that according to government records spent more than $4 billion on contracts labeled 'information technology and software' over the last five years...yet according to last week's testimony by IRS Commissioner John Koskinen himself...the IRS had NO funds with which to save and store e-mails due to budgetary constraints...due to “declining budget resources”...that he claimed prevented the agency from spending the $10 million needed to save and store e-mails...basically to upgrade their system from having to use tape for backups, from having to use hard-drives instead of servers to store information, and from only having the capacity to hold information garnered for six months.

Now ain't that a kick as 'We the People' are told to store our records for a minimum of seven years yet the very agency telling us to do just that only stores their information for six about the epitome of hypocrisy.

Excuse me but with $4 billion dollars having been spent over five years...and what a coincidence that such extravagant spending occurred during the exact time frame that Barack HUSSEIN Obama has been in office...that $10 million could NOT have been put aside from their $4 billion spending spree for such an important endeavor as securing critical interdepartmental e-mails. Of course it couldn't and for very good reason as those e-mails (we believe) were NEVER intended to be saved because to save them would possibly risk exposing...if they fell into the wrong hands...hands like those of Edward Snowden...the truth about an administration and about a traitor of a president run amok.

NO...that could NOT be risked so all e-mails of critical importance that tied Obama in any way into the IRS scandal...especially those between Lois Lerner and Obama himself..had to go 'poof' either by using the cooked up phony crashed computer story or by someone simply hand destroying the hard-drives themselves.

But the question remains where was $4 billion of our taxpayer dollars spent if it was NOT spent on securing and protecting these critical computers and the important information they housed...well let me tell you and it will NOT make you, the reader, happy at all. First, between 2010 and 2012...covering most of the time frame of the missing e-mails...some $50 million of that $4 billion was spent by the IRS on 220 conference trips...with $38 million of that in 2010 alone. And if you break that $50 million down into more easily recognizable and manageable numbers that comes out to $227,272.72 being spent on each conference trip. And this includes our tax dollars being spent on...actually wasted on...$3,500 per night hotel rooms, promotional materials, paintings, and other frivolities all while our economy was tanking, many were without jobs or health insurance, and some even without a roof over their heads.

Now let's look at one conference in particular...a conference approved by then IRS Deputy Commissioner Mark Ernst (who left the IRS in 2010), and then Commissioner Steve Miller... one of many conferences where our taxpayer dollars were spent on IRS hierarchy having a grand old time instead of having those monies spent on securing and upgrading IRS computers. In 2010, with the IRS already engaged in the targeting of TEA Party and Conservative groups seeking 501(c)(3) status, they had the audacity to spend $4.1 million for its entire management staff to attend the Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE) Division Conference, called 'Leading into the Future,' held in Anaheim, California...a conference where none of those attending were required to document their attendance at the supposedly important training sessions.

But where exactly did the money for this conference come from...according to SB/SE Division management, they were allocated $132.7 million in the IRS's FY 2010 budget to hire 1,315 full-time employees, and the conference was paid for with what they called "leftover money" as they did NOT hire all the employees they could have hired...all the Americans they could have put back to work.

However, a complaint about this conference's cost was filed, and after conducting a thorough investigation the Treasury Department's then Inspector General for Tax Administration Steve Miller (who was forced to resign amid revelations that the IRS targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny and who was replaced by Daniel Werfel who was then replaced by John Koskinen) concluded that the IRS did indeed spend excessive sums of money on what they deemed to be "questionable expenses" during this conference.

And "questionable expenses" they were with some of the 2,600 attendees receiving high-priced baseball tickets and stays in 'presidential' hotel suites that normally cost $1,500 to $3,500 per night. And the 15 non-IRS speakers at the conference were paid a total of $135,000 in fees, with artist Erik Wahl being paid $17,000 to talk about what was called "leadership through art"... like art has anything to do with IRS business...and another $11,430 being paid for so-called 'positive psychology' guru Shawn Achor...referred to as a 'happiness expert' lead a 90-minute workshop. I guess the only one made happy by that expenditure was Achor himself because I know 'We the People' sure ain't happy about our hard-earned tax payer dollars being spent on such nonsense.                            

Also, at this conference was shown two now infamous videos...the 5 minute and 40 second 'Star Trek' video that consisted of a scripted presentation featuring SB/SE Division managers portraying Star Trek characters in a 'supposed' tax-themed parody that SB/SE Division upper-level executives claimed was used to open the conference by highlighting "current issues facing the IRS and SB/SE [Division] in the leadership arena and set the stage for the many topics being covered at the conference," and the other called the 'SB/SE Cupid Shuffle' where IRS managers were seen dancing on a stage. And the cost to make these two videos...over $50,100 of our taxpayer dollars spent on pure unadulterated nonsense that had NOTHING really to do with the IRS or the actual business being conducted at the conference.

But the most egregious aspect of this most egregious of conferences...besides the $35,800 spent on three planning trips before the conference...remains the fact that about $3.2 million of the $4.1 million spent (actually spending when all was said and done $4,297,285 but the IRS could NEVER account for the additional $1 million plus spent) did indeed come from the unused funds that had been allocated for hiring...meaning instead of creating all the jobs the monies had been allocated for...instead of putting Americans back to work...the IRS spent that which they called "leftover money" on in to party hardy on our taxpayer dime and 'We the People' be damned.

So now we have a 'perfect storm' brewing between an arrogant government agency who thinks they're untouchable...sounds a bit like the 'anointed one' doesn't it...and a gutless Congress who holds hearing after hearing to get to the bottom of what should be in-your-face obvious and who in the end will most likely do NOT a thing...thus leaving it up to the likes of Edward Snowden or others like him to do what needs to be done...that is find and release the missing e-mails for all to see...for all to realize that they've been duped by the man who would be king.

Now that we have shown, beyond ANY reasonable doubt that a lack of funding was not responsible for not having the sort of computers or retention services necessary to minimize hard drive failures and properly store emails and documents at the IRS, as Commissioner Koskinen fraudulently claimed in hearings last week, it’s time to take a hard and fast look at the probabilities OF having 7 key hard drive crashes such as those that supposedly wiped out the subpoenaed documents.

Professor Ken Homa at Georgetown University looked into this and what he discovered is stunning.

According to BackBlaze, an IT group that tests hard drives, tens of thousands of them at a time by keeping them running 24/7/365 until they crash…of average consumer grade hard drives, about 4perent fail annually. Only 4 percent.  Of the LOWEST grade hard drives available, the failure rate is about 25 percent annually.

During the hearings last week, Congressman Massie of Kentucky challenged Koskinen as to how many computers are used in the IRS and how many hard drives crashed.

According to Koskinen…90,000 employees suffer about 2000 hard drive crashes per year which points to the 4-5 percent category and NOT the 25 percent group of lowest rated hard drives available so…and hold onto your seats…by using a factor of 7 because of the 7 key hard drives...the odds of them failing all at the same time are...

Well, let’s put it this way…the odds are better that you will be struck and killed by lightning (1 in 2,320,000) than you becoming a saint recognized by the Catholic church (1 in 20 million) and yet we are asked to believe that 7 key people of interest in the IRS targeting scandal all had their emails wiped out when their individual hard drives crashed…all just days after first being notified that house committees were interested in LOOKING at those emails when the odds against that VERY thing are…a staggering 6 BILLION to 1.

To put this another way…while the odds of such a 7-way hard drive crash at the IRS is 1 in 6 billion…YOUR odds of being audited are about 1 in 104 and while the IRS only keeps THEIR crucial information for 6 months, you had damn well better have the last 7 YEARS of yours.

It’s clear that these 7 key hard drives didn’t just up and fail but, to wrap all this up…exactly to whom did these 7 hard drives belong?

Agent Julie Chen, IRS ID number 31261 an Exempt Organizations Official in the Cincinnati office.

Agent Nancy Heagney, IRS ID number 31306…another Exempt Organizations Official from the Cincinnati office who worked under Lois Lerner.

Both Chen and Heagney would be considered small fish and likely the “couple of rogue agents” cited by Obama in the early days of this breaking scandal…those he would gladly throw under the bus in order to stay above the fray himself but, the fish get bigger.

Supervisory Agent Tyler Chumney, IRS ID number 31321 who, like Heagney and Chen operated out of the Cincinnati office and likely the supervisor to whom Heagney and Chen reported.

Then, there’s Agent Kimberly Kitchens, IRS ID number 31457 who, along with the previous three, worked in Cincinnati and Kitchens was also a donor to Obama’s 2012 campaign.

What we can take from the information on these IRS employees is that the spate of computer crashes were not confined to, as we have been led to believe, the DC office but also took place in Cincinnati meaning that the odds of these 7 hard drive crashes occurring in 2 separate offices to the exact 7 key people whose emails had just been drawn into question just went from 1 in 6 billion to something substantially more improbable.

Every scandal complete with a cover up needs someone to handle PR and feed the media only what propaganda is deemed suitable and the IRS targeting scandal seems to have had their own, built-in control for just such an occasion…IRS National Media Relations Chief Michelle Eldridge, the woman who took the IRS through the media gauntlet after IRS whistle blowers were targeted by the agency AND from allegations leveled by none other than CHUCK GRASLEY when the IRS leaked confidential info on Conservatives to the LIBERAL nonprofit organization, ProPublica.

And, it gets even more interesting when one considers that Eldridge met with Joe Biden, in the White House, on March 22nd 2010…about the time the targeting scandal started.

Want one more?

How about Former Chief of Staff to IRS Commissioner Steven Miller, one Agent Nikole Flax who also worked for Lois Lerner in the Exempt Organization division. Yes, that’s the exact same Nikole Flax whose name appears on the WHITE HOUSE VISITOR LOGS a surprising 31 times between... July 12th, 2010 and…May 10th, 2013…exactly 3 days before the targeting scandal went public last year.

Still not convinced that this targeting scandal goes all the way to the Oval Office?

You may not be familiar with the name Jeanne Lambrew but she met with Flax TWICE, in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, next door to the West Wing of the White House where the offices for White House staff are housed and Jeane Lambrew, a top aide to Barack Hussein Obama did in fact, act as a conduit for confidential info on Conservative groups with…Lois Lerner.

It’s now time to connect the dots by asking a few pertinent questions.

What are the chances that all six of the IRS agents and executives named above along with Lois Lerner had their hard drives crash, in concert just days after first being asked to turn over their emails?

Well…as we now know…the chances are 1 in 6 billion.

Why would a top aide to Obama, one we know acted as an agent in exchanging confidential information regarding Conservative groups during the IRS targeting scandal, be meeting with the former Chief of Staff to the IRS Commissioner who also worked for Lois Lerner during the targeting scandal if Obama himself wasn’t intimately involved?

If Obama isn’t intimately involved, there would be no reasonable explanation for the Flax and Lambrew meetings.

Why would Lois Lerner be giving the fast tax exempt green light to the organizations highlighted in part 2 of this series ( if Obama wasn’t intimately involved?

She wouldn’t.

Along with the criminal activities exposed here in this 3 part series, the IRS has also violated privacy laws by leaking confidential information on American citizens to the FBI, obstructed house and senate investigations, and Lois Lerner has been found to be in contempt while current IRS Commissioner John Koskinen may well have committed perjury during his testimony last week.

Given all of this and what is undoubtedly yet to come, is there any reasonable reason to believe that the IRS can or should be trusted as the enforcement arm of Obamacare?

Simple answer…no way in hell.

Given what we have presented in this 3 part series, can anyone reasonably believe that Obama didn’t know of the IRS targeting of Conservative groups until he heard about it in the media?

Absolutely not.

Can ANYONE reasonably believe THIS statement from Obama on the day the IRS targeting scandal broke…May 13th, 2013: "If in fact IRS personnel engaged in the kind of practices that have been reported on, and were intentionally targeting conservative groups, then that's outrageous. And there's no place for it. And they have to be held fully accountable. Because the IRS as an independent agency, requires absolute integrity and people have to have confidence that they're applying it in a nonpartisan way. Applying the laws in a nonpartisan way. And you should feel that way regardless of party. I don't care whether you're a Democrat, Independent or a Republican."

Can anyone now reasonably doubt that Obama was launching a preemptive strike against what he knew would be breaking news regarding the IRS targeting scandal just one week earlier when he told graduates:

Edmund Burke said: “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent,” and given the long and growing list of abuses of power, contempt, high crimes and misdemeanors and treason committed over the past 5 ½ years…tyranny is not “lurking around the corner…” it is personified by Obama’s insistence that “people of good conscience remain silent.”

Can ANY credibility be assigned to Obama's response to a question regarding the possibility of corruption or mass corruption at play in the IRS targeting scandal when he said: “Not even mass corruption -- not even a smidgen of

Are you kidding?

And while we realized that the theory put forth in Part 1 of this series ( appeared on its face to be something of a stretch, with what we have exposed in Parts 2 ( and here in part 3 of this series, what do you now think are the chances that there were enough red flags flying to garner the interest and attention of Ed Snowden and that he just might, in fact, have copies of the emails the IRS claims are now unrecoverable?

A whole hell of a lot less than 1 in 6 billion…and if the names Lois Lerner, Nikole Flax, Nancy Heagney, Julie Chen, Tyler Chumney, Kimberly Kitchens or Michelle Eldridge just happen to appear on the Ed Snowden leaked, soon to be published full list of all Americans upon whom the NSA was spying…the odds against Snowden having copies of those incriminating emails drops significantly.

Obviously, the targeting scandal was not just a couple of rogue agents in the Cincinnati office, it was a rogue agency operating above the law and we believe at the personal direction of Barack Hussein Obama for his political gain and to seek political revenge on his behalf.

This is a Constitutional Republic not a dictatorship.

We are a nation of laws and when government agencies, our highest elected officials and government as a whole are allowed to operate outside and above the law there can be no reasonable expectation that the people of the nation should act within or abide by the law.



Sunday, June 29, 2014

Google is taking a Bloomberg inspired step toward “curbing gun violence”. Once again demonstrating the level of ignorance that is prevalent in liberal corporate settings, the software company has decided to expand their ban on firearm-related content. Breitbart reported:
According to Google Support's "Dangerous Products or Services" page, the company "[wants] to keep people safe both online and offline, so [they] won't allow the promotion of some products or services that cause damage, harm, or injury."
Right. Google (ya know, the company that tracks your every move online) is trying to keep us safe. God bless those left coast liberals who are suddenly embracing the manipulative power of big business. Of course Google seems woefully ignorant of the fact that such “dangerous” items, actually keep many people safe every day. I understand it could be chalked up to a difference in corporate culture, but I would encourage Google to promote safety and concealed carry classes if they are serious about keeping people safe offline.

The tech giant also decided that such a ban would be ineffective if utilized exclusively against firearms… Which is why they have embraced the idea of expanding their policy to include accessories, ammunition, magazines, clips, scopes, attachments, slings, et al.

Also included is a ban on ads for "any part or component that's necessary to the function of a gun or intended for attachment to a gun." This covers "gun scopes, ammunition, ammunition clips or belts."
Whew… I know I feel safer, don’t you? I mean, clearly the lack of advertising on firearm-related accessories will cut down on all those Chicago drive bys. Right? Apparently, this is the culture of California Leftists and liberal corporatism… Guns are bad. The only use for a firearm is to promote inexplicable violence and oppression. Those who own, handle, or carry firearms are merely psychopaths waiting for an excuse to unleash a wave of bloody violence at unsuspecting victims…

Well, unless we’re talking about cops, or Bloomberg’s body guards. Those guys are obviously special. The rest of you commoners, however, aren’t responsible enough to be exposed to an advertisement for a hunting scope from Cabela’s while surfing the interwebs.

So, what’s the solution? Boycott Google?

I’m generally not a fan of boycotts. Besides, Google is a pretty intuitive and helpful product. I mean, sure, I find it kinda creepy when my phone alerts me to head out for work because there’s some traffic issues (I never told it where I work, or what route I like to take… It just picked up on those details while it spied on me through my android phone). But, overall, the company has opened the web to limitless possibilities. The dissemination of information is in a renaissance never before seen in human history; and companies like Google are largely responsible for the facilitation of such an environment.

And yet, Google manages to be that neighbor who has every tool you ever need – while still being the most obnoxious human being in the cul-de-sac. He might have that reverse-thread bolt, specialty vice grips, or that silly tool used to remove oil filters… but you just can’t quite get past his Obama bumper sticker and inappropriate political jokes about John Boehner (actually, some of those are kinda funny). So the question is, how much do you really need what Google has to offer?

Google has declared a war on gun owners, the firearm industry, and related self-defense products.

Because, obviously, a defenseless population will be much safer, right? Bing, on the other hand, has no such restrictions. So, go ahead… Bing away. But don’t expect to cut Google out of your life completely.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go add the text of the Second Amendment to my automated signature in Gmail.
Sen. Rubio gave a speech at the National Press Club addressing some of America's retirement policies and the problems we're facing in a future where a much larger percentage of the population are retirees.

Charles Blahaus, a trustee for Social Security and Medicare, wrote about this at Economics21:
Perhaps the most significant policy element in the Rubio speech was his embrace of specific reforms to stabilize Social Security’s finances. Social Security is the single largest federal program; it also faces the greatest financing shortfall of all federal trust funds including Medicare’s. Reforms to maintain Social Security solvency would improve the federal fiscal outlook dramatically as well as strengthen the foundation of most Americans’ retirement security.
Senator Rubio embraced reforms that include progressive growth of Social Security’s benefit formula and a gradual increase in future eligibility ages. These concepts receive wide enough support from Social Security experts that they are likely to be included in any bipartisan Social Security solution.
It is a measure of the public education challenge facing reformers that some bloggers and reporters thereafter questioned whether Senator Rubio’s proposals would actually shore up Social Security finances, even though there are many publicly-available analyses demonstrating that they would. The SSA chief actuary found that one version of progressive indexing would by itself eliminate over half of the program’s actuarial imbalance as well as 89 percent of its annual shortfalls over the long term. Combining this with a gradual increase in Social Security eligibility ages as the Senator proposed would be more than sufficient to maintain Social Security solvency and allow for his other proposal of payroll tax relief for working seniors.
Though the fervor for Social Security reform has mostly died down, it remains an issue that's more pressing every day. More and more Americans are retiring, and the federal government has committed an unsustainable amount of money to our retirement policies - including Social Security.

Reform is absolutely necessary, and it would be a good thing for Marco Rubio to make this a little more prominent in Americans' minds.
140628isisWASHINGTON – Claiming its goal is to smash the “partitioning of Muslim lands by crusader powers,” the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, has set out its goal of redrawing the map of the Middle East.

This goal is outlined in an article from its latest weekly web magazine, The Islamic State Report, a professionally designed mouthpiece meant to recruit would-be jihadist fighters from the West.
ISIS’ web magazine began in June and has just published its fifth issue. Its fourth issue talks about redrawing the map of the Middle East, and on its cover shows ISIS fighters crossing between Syria and Iraq without any sign of a demarcation between the two countries. The web magazine is published every Saturday.

The article seeks to justify creation of an Islamic caliphate to re-establish the Middle East region before it was carved up by the British and French following World War I.
140628islamicstatereportIn outlining how it is reshaping the Middle East map, ISIS in said its goal is to correct an injustice that goes back to a secret arrangement between the British and French, known as the 1916 Sykes-Picot Treaty. That treaty created the countries of Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan and later contributed to Israel’s creation.

Middle East experts say some of these nation-states won’t survive in their present form, and while some will, the bottom line is the United States won’t be able to stop a process that is well underway.

Before the treaty, which went into effect following the end of World War I, those countries didn’t exist but were part of the Ottoman Empire, which was allied with Germany. The Empire went out of existence once WWI ended, closing out its reign from 1299 to 1923.

The British got territory divided into Palestine and Transjordan, from which Iraq emerged. France got Greater Syria and coastal state lands that included modern-day Lebanon and Syria.

Muslims refer to the Sykes-Picot Treaty as the source of their troubles, leading to sectarian and ethnic divisions. In creating the state of Iraq, the treaty delineated non-Arab Sunni Kurds in the north, Sunni Arab Muslims in the western and central portions of the country and Shi’ite Muslim Arabs to the south.

At the time, the British also created the modern state of Jordan out of the Transjordan region and promised the Jews a homeland and state within a state under the Balfour Declaration.

In Lebanon, the French gave the Christian Maronites status and carved out borders that gave them a majority over Sunni and Shi’ite Muslims. Syria similarly was divided, giving the Alawites and the Druze their own portions of the country and the Sunni Muslims Damascus and Aleppo. Syria, however, didn’t become a united country until World War II.

Since that time, turmoil has reined from revolts, riots and civil wars, with the various sectarian factions fighting among each other.

ISIS claims it is out to rectify these past events. However, the jihadist group still has a challenge in showing it can govern the caliphate it seeks to create, even though it has become a rallying point and sparked the imagination of disgruntled, unemployed young people to become jihadists with its dramatic military successes.

ISIS’ success also has shown just how limited U.S. influence now is in that region, as these sectarian and ethnic groups within these countries try to sort out things for themselves.


Saturday, June 28, 2014

On average, 22 veterans commit suicide each day. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), unemployment, substance abuse, and homelessness are some of the many challenges veterans face upon returning home. 
The Library of Congress Veterans History Project hosted a panel today discussing the causes, effects, and treatments for PTSD among veterans. In order to dispel myths about post-traumatic stress and alleviate stigmas and misconceptions, experts and clinicians stress that PTSD should not be something we talk about in hushed tones. It is imperative that we pay special attention to the stories of mission, purpose, and service that our veterans can teach.

In light of National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Day, Townhall got a first look at one veteran’s assessment of the traditional paradigm of veteran reintegration.

Chad Grills, an Army Infantry Veteran who has served in Iraq and Egypt, says that the recent headlines of tragedy and corruption at the Department of Veterans Affairs are only the beginning symptoms of larger systemic problems. He believes that America needs our veterans to become the leaders, entrepreneurs, and politicians of the future.

Grills explains that the VA often gives outdated, irrelevant information on how to deal with post-traumatic stress. In his book project Veterans: Don’t Reintegrate, Rebuild America, he creates the roadmap veterans should receive when they return to the states.

Townhall asked Chad Grills to describe the strategies leaders can use to address the veteran suicide rate:
Addressing The Veteran Suicide Rate
The veteran suicide epidemic will only slow down when we remove barriers to talking about these issues. Real suicide prevention training in the military begins when leaders get up and share their own stories of battling depression. Many military leaders fear that they’ll lose their jobs should they display vulnerability. The sad part is, these fears are well founded. But, speaking openly and candidly about depression carries a huge opportunity. This display of vulnerability has the potential to ignite camaraderie amongst units. All leaders have to do is tell a simple story that showcases their own vulnerability.
This display will allow future conversations about the subject to happen more naturally.
• When it's appropriate or comes up in conversation, tell a story about battling your own depression.
• Sit with the feelings of awkwardness that might arise, from both your subordinates, and yourself.
• Fight that cringe, push past it, and acknowledge verbally how ridiculous it is that something so important is so hard to talk about, and move on.
• The next display of vulnerability is easier, and a sense of camaraderie is inevitable after a unit is allowed to have honest conversations.

Real, public displays of speaking without shame about topics like depression are a must to build the trust that can save lives later.
How leaders can effectively address veteran unemployment:
Employment Strategies
It’s important that veterans ignore every traditional channel of getting hired. This includes avoiding sending unsolicited resumes and most career fairs. Instead, veterans should connect directly with the highest-level person at any company they may be interested in working for. Ideally, find the email addresses of three upper level folks (C level executives are fine) and reach out directly. Keep your email short, to the point, and ask a thoughtful question at the end. Don’t ask for a job, but include a signal that you’ve studied the company and are curious what tips that executive might offer for an aspiring person in their field. The goal is to start a meaningful dialogue. These are the decision makers who can eventually contact HR and expedite the interview process. When hiring managers are handed a resume by their bosses, they tend to study it more closely then those that come in unsolicited.
In order to publish his book, Chad Grills has set up a Kickstarter campaign that expires July 11. You can click here to donate.
Night Watch

North Korea: Military crews fired three short range rockets or missiles into the Sea of Japan today. News outlets speculated they might have been new cruise missiles. 
Comment: It is normal for North Korea to test rockets and missiles, especially new weapons. South Korean press reported this was the tenth episode of firings this year, which is much higher than in most years.

The North recently has chosen to use rocket and missiles launches to display its displeasure with South Korea or the US or both. It said so in propaganda statements. Thus, today's launches could be the start of another complaint over South Korean or US training.

Afghanistan: A spokesman of the Ministry of National Defense said that fighting in Sangin District of Helmand Province has nearly ended, but that operations continue in Nawzad, Musa Qala and Kajaki districts. He admitted that Taliban fighters still control a region in Sangin.

Comment: Open sources contain few details of the fighting, but it is an important test of the capabilities of Afghan forces. They could use air support, which was essential to the safety of US and NATO forces. Air power is the one capability of which the Taliban remain afraid and for which they are defenseless.

Iraq: Security. Lieutenant General Ata said today that Iraqi security forces cleansed the University of Tikrit from the terrorist Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) elements and raised the Iraqi flag on the university building. He said that this took place following a heli-borne assault by Iraqi special forces. He said that scores of terrorists were killed in this operation. At least one Iraqi helicopter crashed during the assault.

ISIL claimed to have taken control of major natural gas fields in northern Iraq today and of another town southwest of Baghdad.

A suicide bomber wearing an explosive belt killed at least seven and injured 36 others in a Baghdad neighborhood.

Comment: The counter-attack at Tikrit is the most salient of recent signs of an emerging counter-offensive. Iraqi forces are taking advantage of ISIL's over-extension which degrades its ability to defend territory beyond Mosul. ISIL might have lost its opportunity to execute a terror attack in Baghdad.

Politics. The new Iraqi parliament will convene its first session on 1 July.

Iraq-Russia: Prime Minister al-Maliki told the press today that Iraq has bought used fighter jets from Russia and Belarus to battle Islamist militants. He said the aircraft should arrive in two or three days.

"God willing within one week this force will be effective and will destroy the terrorists' dens," he said.

Comment: Al-Maliki did not disclose the numbers or types of aircraft or other arrangements, such as technical support, spare and repair parts, ordnance supplies and training assistance. He did make clear, however, that he went to the Russians and Belarus for assistance because US aid takes so long to arrive.

Provided the Russians and Belarus can deliver what they promise on time, both will have stolen another march on the US. As in Afghanistan, air superiority is the antidote to the terrorists' ground mobility.

In his press interview, al-Maliki confirmed the reports of Syrian air strikes inside Iraq. He denied requesting the Syrian air strikes, but indicated he welcomed any and all help. He said, "They carry out their strikes and we carry out ours, and the final winners are our two countries."

Syria: The Syrian air force on 26 June carried out an airstrike 138 kilometers (85 miles) west of Mosul, in the Rabia border area, targeting elements of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant,

Comment: The Rabia border crossing point is in far northwestern Iraq, just south of the Turkey-Iraq-Syria tri-border point. It is on a main highway and the railroad line that runs from Mosul to Turkey, via northeastern Syria.

Cameroon: Defense forces killed 10 Boko Haram terrorists in three clashes in northern Cameroon near the border with Nigeria since Sunday.

Comment: These are the only ten Boko Haram members reported to have been killed by security forcesthis week. Nigeria managed to capture two, but killed none.

Two of the clashes occurred at small villages in northern Cameroon. Cameroonian defense forces killed the attackers and drove them away with no reported casualties for the forces of order and civilian populace. Somehow Nigeria cannot do what Cameroon does regularly to defend villages.

End of NightWatch

Obama letting Benghazi suspects off hook, recent arrest “small potatoes”

 Pamela Geller / Atlas Shrugs

“He was low-hanging fruit,” one source told Fox News. “We could have picked him up months and months ago and there was no change, or urgency to do this now.” Obama tries to hide his weakness and fecklessness with actions like this one. It’s a futile effort. The world knows that the global policeman has left the arena.

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Obama3“Sources: US letting Benghazi suspects off hook, recent arrest ‘small potatoes,’” by Adam Housley,, June 27, 2014:
Despite President Obama’s promise to stay focused on hunting down those responsible for the 2012 Benghazi attack — and despite a recent arrest touted as a major takedown — sources say little has been done to nab the other suspects.
According to multiple sources on the ground, including some with direct knowledge of the operations to identify and hunt the Benghazi suspects, intelligence that could have been acted upon at times has been ignored or put on hold. Further, they say, the recent capture of Ahmed Abu Khattala — now on a ship bound for the U.S., expected to arrive this weekend — was an easy one.
“He was low-hanging fruit,” one source told Fox News. “We could have picked him up months and months ago and there was no change, or urgency to do this now.”
Former Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in the Sept. 11, 2012, attack. Khattala was long thought to be involved, but is also considered by some to be rather low on the suspect list.
According to sources, the United States has a “target list” that initially contained about 10 suspects identified within days of the attack and eventually grew to more than 20 as American Special Forces conducted surveillance in and around Benghazi.
The four groups on the “target list” include Ansar al-Sharia, with the top target being the “Emir of Ansar al Sharia,” Abu Sufian Ibrahim Ahmed Hamuda bin Qumu. He was a prisoner at Guantánamo Bay for more than five years and at the time was classified by analysts at the prison as “a probable member of Al Qaeda.” Despite this significant threat to American security and allies, bin Qumu was released as part of an amnesty for militants in 2008. Sources told Fox News that intelligence has shown his involvement in the attacks, and actionable intelligence has for some reason been ignored.
In this same group, but at the bottom of the list, is Khattala.
Multiple sources with direct knowledge of the Benghazi attack also question why more of the investigation hasn’t been centered on the Libyan landlord of the American facilities in Benghazi, Mohammad al-Bishari. Some in the region that night insist that al-Bishari “knows a lot more than he is letting on” and “is a key connection to everyone else that night” — and should be at the very least intensely questioned about what he may know about the attack. Al-Bishari is also said to have bought a new hotel in Benghazi.
When contacted by Fox News, al-Bishari asserted his innocence and said that the United States still owes him money for the damage done to both the consulate and the annex the night of the Benghazi attack.
Others on “the target list” include Al Qaeda and “Libyan militants.”
As Fox News previously reported last fall, American Special Forces on multiple occasions weren’t allowed to go after harder and more important targets, even though they had multiple chances and opportunities to do so over the course of 16 months. The team, which was officially assigned around Tripoli to train Libyan Special Forces, was also tasked with finding the Libyan suspects responsible for the Benghazi attack. While a U.S. official told Fox News that the operators in question were not specifically tasked with finding the Libyan suspects responsible for the Benghazi attack, a source in the region countered the claims, saying “it’s partly a cover.”
Complicating the hunt, the U.S.-developed training camp on the outskirts of Tripoli was taken over a few months ago by militia groups who are now hoarding weapons, according to sources. The worry is this camp, abandoned by U.S. trainers, is being used to attack the new Libyan government and possibly western interests.
As for Khattala, the investigation has shown that he was essentially the ground force commander and is directly tied to Ansar al-Sharia and the broader network including Al Qaeda — and there is direct evidence linking him before and after the attack. Khattala was also a member of the Libyan Shield, a militia formed to protect Benghazi while operating separate from Tripoli. Intelligence has shown that it and almost all the Libyan militias are tied to Ansar al-Sharia — and commanders from some of these militias thought to be friendly and who have worked with American personnel have flipped sides and affiliated with Ansar al-Sharia.
“Ansar al-Sharia is saturating the whole region of eastern Libya with money, training and personnel. They are now the biggest organization in town,” one intelligence source said.

“[Khattala] is the actionable guy and the target, but the [Al Qaeda] network is much larger. He is tied to terrorists throughout the region by our guys on the ground. Overall he is small potatoes to the larger Al Qaeda and terrorist network in the region,” said another intelligence officer.
The post Obama letting Benghazi suspects off hook, recent arrest “small potatoes” appeared first on Pamela Geller, Atlas Shrugs.

ISIL on Twitter: “#CalamityWillBefallUS”

Robert Spencer / Jihad Watch

On Twitter today, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant is heavily promoting the hashtag “#CalamityWillBefallUS.” The account from which these are taken is “Prophet’s Khilafa,” which bills itself thusly: “This account is dedicated to spreading the #NEWS of #Islamic_State_Of_Iraq_And_Sham\#ISIS to the #English speaking audience.”


Rep. Darrell Issa on IRS Chief's Testimony: 'One Step Shy of Perjury'
By Todd Beamon
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa on Friday said that IRS Commissioner John Koskinen was "one step shy of perjury" in the testimony he gave before the panel this week on the missing emails in the agency's targeting scandal.

"He was disingenuous, which is a nice term — or, in fact, he didn't tell the whole truth, which is what I said in front of the whole committee," the California Republican told Greta Van Susteren on her Fox News program. "He's certainly way past meeting his obligation of as an officer of the court to tell the whole truth."

Issa was referring to Koskinen's testimony at a rare Monday night hearing in which he attacked "obstruction by the IRS" over emails written by former supervisor Lois Lerner that the committee wants for review.

The Internal Revenue Service said two weeks ago that it lost a trove of Lerner's emails in a 2011 computer crash.

"I'm sick and tired of your game-playing in response to congressional oversight," Issa told Koskinen at the hearing.

The agency was found in May 2013 to have targeted tea party, conservative, and religious groups in their applications for tax-exempt status. Lerner headed the division that scrutinized the applications. The targeting occurred before the 2012 elections.

Lerner, who retired last September because of the scandal, was found in contempt of Congress for refusing to testify about the targeting before Issa's committee.

In his interview, Issa told Van Susteren that many of the missing emails could be recovered.

"There's two sides to every email," he said. "Many of Lois Lerner's emails went to multiple recipients. A great deal of them can still be found."

Issa described Lerner as "a criminal conspirator" — regarding both the missing emails and the targeting of the conservative groups. His committee has also subpoenaed records from Lerner's term as head of the Federal Election Commission after reports that she had engaged in similar scrutiny of conservative groups.

"We don't know who all she conspired with," Issa said, adding that both his panel and the House Ways and Means Committee have recommended that the Justice Department pursue criminal charges against Lerner.

He also noted the release of emails this week by Ways and Means showing that Lerner referred Iowa Republican Sen. Charles Grassley for a possible audit.

"She broke rules. She broke laws — and it's very clear after the Grassley revelation that this was somebody who was trying to hurt people with her actions," Issa said.

He noted that she had "sent 1.1 million records to the Department of Justice hoping to get prosecutions against" the nonprofit groups.

Issa and GOP Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio requested IRS documents in the matter earlier this month.

"It didn't always work, but she sure tried," Issa said.

High court rules against Obama on appointments

Richard Wolf, USA Today

WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court dealt a blow to the powers of the presidency Thursday, ruling decisively that President Obama violated the Constitution by going around the Senate to name key labor and financial watchdogs.

Resolving a longstanding battle between the two other branches of government, the justices declared invalid key "recess appointments" made by Obama in 2012 when the Senate was holding only pro-forma sessions every three days.

But the majority opinion by Justice Stephen Breyer did not go further and strike down most other methods by which presidents fill key jobs when the Senate is unavailable. While the ruling as it affects Obama's appointments was unanimous, four conservative justices would have applied the restriction far more broadly.

Instead, the court stopped short of limiting such appointments to remote periods and circumstances, as a federal appeals court had ruled last year.

"Because the Senate was in session during its pro forma sessions, the president made the recess appointments before us during a break too short to count as recess," Breyer said. "For that reason, the appointments are invalid." He was joined by Justices Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

Cast in the hyper-political environment of 2014, the battle pit Obama's brazen appointments against Senate Republicans' unprecedented efforts to block or delay his nominations. It lost its immediate relevance last fall when Democrats changed the Senate's rules to deprive the Republican minority of its ability to block nominations.

"More than anything, today's Supreme Court ruling underscores the importance of the rules reform Senate Democrats enacted last November," said Majority Leader Harry Reid.

If Republicans take control of the Senate in November, however -- and whenever the White House and Senate are controlled by opposite parties -- the high court's ruling will prevent presidents from sidestepping the Constitution's confirmation process during similar three-day recesses.

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell hailed the ruling. "The president made an unprecedented power grab by placing political allies at a powerful federal agency while the Senate was meeting regularly and without even bothering to wait for its advice and consent," he said. "A unanimous Supreme Court has rejected this brazen power-grab."

Justice Antonin Scalia wrote for the remaining four justices that a president's recess appointments power should be limited far more than the court allowed, because the Senate always can be called back into session to confirm nominees.

"The majority practically bends over backward to ensure that recess appointments will remain a powerful weapon in the president's arsenal," he said. "That is unfortunate, because the recess appointment power is an anachronism."

After enduring three years of Republican opposition, Obama opened 2012 by naming three members to the quorum-starved National Labor Relations Board and the first director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau while the Senate was gaveling in and out every 72 hours, usually without conducting any business.

Obama said the Senate, for all intents and purposes, was in recess. Under the Constitution, presidents can fill vacancies during recesses for up to two years without Senate confirmation.

Enter Pepsi bottler Noel Canning of Yakima, Wash., which contested a 2012 decision of the labor board dominated by Obama's recess appointees. It won more than it bargained for at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, which ruled that such appointments are constitutional only when vacancies occur and are filled during the annual break between congressional sessions.

That is a more literal reading of the Constitution that Scalia endorsed in his opinion, joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito. Had their view prevailed, future presidents would have been far more limited in making recess appointments.

Stiill, the high court's ruling means that hundreds of decisions made by the labor board while dominated by Obama's recess appointees in 2012 and half of 2013 will be called into question. The new five-member board, including four members since approved by the Senate, may have to revisit those cases. Consumer protection chief Richard Cordray has since been confirmed by the Senate, so he can reaffirm his prior actions.

Ronald Reagan made 232 recess appointments during his eight years in office. Bill Clinton and George W. Bush each made well more than 100. In 1903, Theodore Roosevelt made more than 160 recess appointments during one short break between congressional sessions.

To date, Obama has made only 32 recess appointments. But in this case, he did so to get around the Senate's intransigence rather than its absence -- something both liberal and conservative justices frowned upon during oral arguments in January.

The recess appointments power was more pertinent when senators left town on "horseback," Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said at the time.

Added Justice Elena Kagan: "This is not the horse-and-buggy era anymore."
An armchair terrorist vets moderate rebels  
By: Diane Sori

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse in the Middle East...just when you thought hell had already broken sashays Barack HUSSEIN Obama...a muslim and what I call an 'armchair terrorist' in his own right...who had the audacity to now ask Congress for $500 million to help "train and equip appropriately vetted elements of the moderate Syrian armed opposition." he says..."to empower the moderate Syrian opposition," what this man does NOT get or gets but does NOT give a damn about is that the Syrian opposition are themselves terrorists as they get funding, weapons, and support from al-Qaeda...and that ISIS...whose base of operations into Iraq is from a direct offshoot of al-Qaeda.

In other words Barack HUSSEIN Obama has now in-our-face taken sides on America's behalf...without 'We the People's' permission I might a sovereign nation's civil war and done so on the side of the 'so-called' moderate Syrian rebels. But what he can't get through his thick skull is that there is NO such thing as a moderate terrorist...oops I mean rebel...and know that these rebels are indeed terrorists but terrorists who love to pose with American politicians to show that even terrorists can smile for the cameras before they take a knife to your throat.

So as the saying goes, 'one hand washes the other' and Obama's hands are the dirtiest of all as he's had and still has direct contact with these anything but moderate rebels. And with his having already chosen sides for America, Obama fails to understand that as bad as al-Assad is he is still better than those out to remove him from office.

And with the Senate Armed Services Committee already having approved a version of the defense policy bill authorizing the Defense Department to provide 'equipment, supplies, training, and defense services' to elements of the Syrian opposition that have been screened...gee I wonder by who as it has NOT been made public which 'supposed' moderate Syrian rebels they intend to train and support. And with Obama now wanting $500 million out of the $1.5 billion package targeted for what he calls a 'regional stabilization initiative' involving his muslim brethren in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, and Iraq...Obama again does NOT care that he's supporting...that he has America supporting...the badder of the two bad guys.

So by his funding these anything but moderate rebels, Obama is actually helping to fund and equip ISIS, because ISIS has many members working amongst these 'moderate rebels'. And ISIS is the most brutal of the brutal whose focused goal is to establish an islamic caliphate in the region one head at a time if need be, and who right now has overrun major portions of Iraq along with surrounding Baghdad on three sides.

And as ISIS slowly completes its choke hold on Baghdad, having major area's north and west of the city already under their control, they've now reached the town of Mansouriyat al-Jabalthat's which is just an hour from the outskirts of Baghdad city proper...a town that's home to four natural gas fields, and that folks is NOT good at all. And with al-Qaeda proper having begun to merge with both ISIS forces and troops from the al-Nusra front...and with ISIS now controlling all key border crossings on the Iraqi side of the Syrian border along with their taking of U.S. made weapons from retreating Iraqi just know Iraq could soon fall. And if Iraq falls could Syria...especially its eastern portions...or Afghanistan be far behind.

Can that scenario really happen...YES it Obama wants our Congress to help fund and arm these bast*rds to help expedite the process of establishing his oh-so-wanted islamic caliphate post haste. And to speed up that process the funding of the so-called 'moderate rebels' fits into his plan quite nicely. After all, since he physically can't join in the battle...NOT that this wimp in presidential clothing would ever have the courage to pick up a gun and fight...what Obama feels he can at least do is fund and side with those out to kill us all...that is all of us who unlike him do NOT straddle the ground with our butts in the air pointing east.

But even with things in Iraq looking their bleakest right now one glimmer of hope did surface...a glimmer that could have American blood spilled and treasure spent maybe NOT being in vein...a glimmer that NO thanks to Obama had Iraqi forces... American trained Iraqi forces...launching an airborne assault on Saddam Hussein's hometown and now rebel-held city of Tikrit, as they landed three helicopters with commandos in a stadium for a counter-attack against the ISIS forces...and they successfully held them back.

And so as Obama now escalates the U.S. role in the Middle East in Syria by his choosing sides with the 'supposed' vetting and then funding rebel fighters (but hopefully he'll do so with Congressional approval and without us actually funding islamic extremists and terrorists as the militant and moderate rebels seem to have merged and morphed into one cohesive force) this man has now inserted America into Syria's civil war.

And with his sending 300 military advisers into Iraq to help 'advise' the government forces on how to deal with ISIS and to help train them in that dealing, Obama has inserted us back into the Iraq conflict after his having pulled us out two years ago. And with said pull-out that should have meant the U.S. involvement in the Iraq war theater was over...involvement in a country that now thanks to ISIS has little if any effective national borders left. Yet by doing what he's doing with the military advisers along with his having drones flying overhead...isn't he getting us again involved in a war without a 'Declaration of War' from Congress...just something to think about...just something to fear.