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Monday, January 31, 2011

TheDC interview: Michael Oren, Israel’s face in America

By Jamie Weinstein - The Daily Caller   1:51 AM 01/31/2011
“What do you need to know about our situation in the Middle East?” asked Michael Oren, Israel’s ambassador to the United States, at the beginning of an extensive interview with The Daily Caller at the Israeli Embassy in Northwest Washington last Wednesday.
I wanted to know a lot. About Israeli policy. About Israel’s position on breaking news in the region. About Oren himself.
And Oren the man is fascinating. Raised in New Jersey, Oren moved to Israel shortly after earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Columbia University. He joined the Israeli Defense Forces, serving as a paratrooper during the Lebanon War. He was among the first Israeli troops to enter Beirut in 1982, where he said in a C-Span interview his “unit was decimated in an ambush.” Oren returned to the United States to pursue a Ph.D. in Middle East Studies at Princeton, which he was awarded in 1986.
Lebanon was not the last conflict in which Oren served. He was one of the few Israelis to participate in the first Gulf War as a “strategic liaison” between the U.S. Sixth fleet and the Israeli army, and would go on to serve in some capacity – more recently a media relations role – in just about every major conflict Israel has engaged in during the last three decades, including the 2008-2009 Gaza war just months before he was offered the ambassadorship.
When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tapped Oren in 2009 to become ambassador, he was a visiting professor at Georgetown University and the author of what many consider the most authoritative account of the Six Day War, “Six Days of War.” Previously a dual American and Israeli citizen, he had to sacrifice his U.S. citizenship to take the job, which he told the New York Times was the hardest part of accepting the post. With no political experience, Oren was an interesting choice to be Israel’s face in America. He was also in some respects the perfect choice. Few are as familiar with America’s role in the Middle East as Oren, who wrote a New York Times bestseller, “Power, Faith and Fantasy: America in the Middle East,” detailing U.S. involvement in the region dating back to 1776.

To understand Oren’s worldview, I asked what books most shaped his outlook.
This question appealed to him and his intellect. He approached it seriously, taking time to sit quietly and think it through. He broke it down into two categories – books that shaped his view of the Middle East and books that shaped his worldview generally.
For the Middle East, Oren pointed to “The Arab Predicament” by Hoover Institution fellow Fouad Ajami, “Islam in Modern History” by the late religion scholar Wilfred Cantwell Smith, the whole corpus of writings of Princeton Middle East scholar Bernard Lewis, the Quran, and the writings of the medieval Islamic scholar Ibn Taymiyyah, one of whose books Oren said “was probably the most important book I’ve ever read on the Middle East.”
“I learned more from a medieval Islamic philosopher than anybody,” Oren said.
Taymiyyah’s writings, which I read in graduate school, were somewhat obscure until they became frequently cited by Islamists justifying the wave of terrorism that threatens the Western world today.
As for his general worldview, Oren cited “The Siege” by Connor Cruise O’Brian, “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” by Robert Pirsig, and “Making It” by Norman Podhoretz as influential on him.
He also cited the Philip Roth novel “Portnoy’s Complaint,” which inspired his press aides to jump in with their favorite Philip Roth quotes and novels.
“Don’t miss a Philip Roth book,” the ambassador advised, summing up the Philip Roth discussion.
Asked what he’s learned about the U.S-Israel relationship that he didn’t anticipate before taking the job, Oren said he came to greater appreciate the commercial side of the partnership.
“I learned about the U.S.-Israel commercial relationship, which I knew nothing about, which is quite big and getting bigger all the time,” he said. “I’m always learning about it. I just learned last week that an Israeli plant in Puerto Rico makes 70 percent of the antibiotics in North America. Think about that. It’s the Teva plant. All the generic antibiotics.”
“I learned that an Israeli-made bandage saved [Ariz. Democratic Rep.] Gabby Giffords’s life,” Oren added. “A special bandage that clots blood.”
The tenure of an Israeli ambassador to the U.S. usually ranges from two to four years, at least over the last three decades. With Oren nearing the low end of that window, is he considering stepping down in the near future?
“The longevity of Israeli ambassadors is subject to a couple of factors,” he explained. “One, is the person who appointed you still in government? Do you enjoy the job? … Not all Israeli ambassadors enjoyed it. Do you feel like you’re getting anywhere?”
While Oren said he has “no plans of leaving” and he enjoys the job “immensely,” he did note that it is “physically challenging.”
“It’s a wear and tear, it’s a major outlay of energy,” he said. “Last week I went to visit Miami and Puerto Rico. The average day began around 7 and 8 and ended around midnight or 1 in the morning. That’s a day’s work, typical. So it’s very similar to work in the White House in that way. So it’s physically challenging.”
So “endlessly fascinating” is the job, that Oren says he “sometimes think[s] about how I go back to sitting in a room and writing books after this.”
But go back to writing books he ultimately will.
“I had signed a contract for a book just before I got into the job. I didn’t know I was getting the job and I had signed a contract with Random House for my next book, which was going to be a four- or five-year project,” he explained. “Each of these books take four or five years to write, with no breaks. And the next book was going to be on the creation of the State of Israel because we don’t really have a book that talks about how Israel was created. We have a lot of books on the ‘48 war but no books on how a Jewish state after 2,000 years actually came into being and three years after the Holocaust, which I think is the most extraordinary story in history.”
One area that that is impossible to avoid when discussing Israel’s situation in the Middle East is the seeming tension in the U.S.-Israel relationship since Barack Obama was elected president. Oren’s job is to improve relations, so it is unlikely he will speak ill of the American president to any journalist. So, instead of asking Oren whether President Obama was a good friend of Israel, I asked him whether the president could be considered the best friend Israel has ever had in an American president?
“I think Obama is the best friend in ways that are different sometimes than other best friends,” Oren said diplomatically. “We have had a number of best friends as president.”
“Here, I’ll give you an example,” Oren elaborated. “December 2 there was a Hanukkah party at the White House. That was the night that a huge fire broke out in the Carmel forest. It was our largest natural disaster. And I’m walking into the White House and I get a call from Prime Minister Netanyahu saying we need emergency, right now we need planes, firefighting planes, we don’t have any firefighting planes. Go ask the president of the United States for firefighting planes. So I go in the White House, meet the president, tell him the message from the prime minister. He turns to Reggie Love [the president’s personal assistant] and says, ‘Whatever Israel wants, get Israel immediately.’ And then that night he flew off to Afghanistan … The first call he made when he arrived in Afghanistan was back to the White House to find out if Israel had gotten the planes … Of the 11 fire fighting planes that the United States had, we got eight of them — including special firefighting units, these commando units, amazing, called hot spots. All within 24 hours. Now that’s what I call a best friend.”
But does Obama rise to the Bush standard?
That isn’t just a standard TheDC invented. It is, in fact, a standard that Oren wrote about before he was ever under consideration for the job of Israeli ambassador. He outlined the new Bush standard of pro-Israel presidential friendship in an article he wrote during the 2008 campaign discussing whether John McCain or Barack Obama would be a better president for Israel to have in the White House.
“During his eight years in office, George W. Bush established new standards for the term ‘pro-Israel.’ He repeatedly affirmed Israel’s right to defend itself against terror, and praised its value as America’s primary Middle Eastern ally. He also expressed a deep ideological attachment to Israel as a democracy and, spiritually, to Israel as the biblical homeland,” Oren wrote at the time in the fall 2008 edition of the Journal of International Security Affairs. “Less publicly, the president also authorized an unprecedented level of cooperation between the U.S. military and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), including intelligence sharing, anti-terror training, and the joint development of missile defense systems.”
Has Obama really lived up to the Bush standard, as outlined by Oren himself?
“I think he’s on that standard,” Oren posited, a point many of Israel’s supporters in the United States would certainly contend with. “Bush had said that the United States, that the relationship between the Israel and the United States was unshakable, unbreakable. He had put that commitment into words with a 10-year memorandum of understanding of $30 billion dollars in military aid. And he had undertaken to ensure Israel’s Qualitative Military Edge (QME), which means simply that Israel can defend itself by itself against any Middle Eastern adversary, any combination of Middle Eastern adversaries. These were the historic undertakings that Bush had made. Obama’s held up all of them and QME, on the question of Qualitative Military, he has even gone further and tried to redress some of the imbalance and erosion that has occurred over the years.”
What about the peace process? Hasn’t the Obama administration shown a stunning naïveté, at best, by seemingly making the issue of Israeli settlements the overriding issue in the Middle East, or at the very least in Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations? Indeed, Mr. Ambassador, was it not you who hit the nail on the head in that same aforementioned 2008 article when you wrote that, “An Obama presidency … may well launch an entirely new [peace] initiative, one based on zero tolerance for Israeli settlement-building and checkpoints, as well as on the belief that the road to Baghdad and Tehran runs through Bethlehem and Nabulus.”
“That was the article I wrote on McCain and Obama, I invested a lot of energy in that,” Oren said proudly, before saying, “Listen I don’t want to comment on anything I wrote before I got into this job ’cause this is like government service. Once you’re in government service anything you wrote previously is irrelevant.”
He then proceeded to comment on what he wrote previously.
“But the Obama administration made, and the president-elect before made his position on the settlements clear. It’s not a new position, I mean the American administrations going back to Nixon have had problems with settlements,” he explained. “This was very much a doctrine of Obama’s dealing with the Middle East, that linkage, and I want to give it fair voice here, that the United States and its allies could better handle the Iranian nuclear threat if there were peace between Israel and the Arabs — and the Palestinians. Our position was more that unless you deal with the Iranian threat, making peace would be vastly more difficult because the Iranians can stop it at anytime. They can get Hamas to stop it, they can get Hezbollah to stop it.”
But don’t the Wikileaks releases show the president’s whole guiding Middle East philosophy is off-base by illustrating that even Arab leaders are obsessed with the threat of Iranian nuclear proliferation and not the Arab-Israeli peace process?
“We’re only getting a partial picture from Wikileaks,” Oren cautioned. “You should know that we regard them as irresponsible and reckless. I mean, people who supposedly care about peace are the people who are undermining diplomacy, which is the best way to avoid war.”
“But,” he continued, after providing that necessary caveat, “the Arab leaders in the documents leaked so far seemed to care about one thing and one thing only, and that’s Iran. They weren’t quoted as expressing any particularly urgency about the need for Arab-Israeli peace.”
Anyone who has followed Israeli issues in the past decade knows that the Iranian nuclear threat is the Jewish state’s greatest concern. So I asked Oren about the comments reportedly made earlier this month by now-former Mossad chief Meir Dagan. Dagan reportedly said, “If the world stands by and does nothing, the soonest Iran will have a nuclear device is 2015, if that.”
Many credit this reality to Dagan himself, who may or may not have been the catalyst for the creation of Stuxnet, the computer worm praised for doing electronically what some once thought Israel or America might have had to do militarily to set back Iran’s nuclear program. Considering Dagan’s reported statement, is Iran the pressing, existential threat it once was?
“I have great regard for Meir Dagan but his assessment is one assessment of one person. It’s not an assessment that reflects all of Israel’s intelligence community or Israel’s military community or Israel’s political echelon,” Oren said. “There are other opinions out there and the other opinions are that we do not have a lot of time here.”
Translation: Iran remains at the top of Israel’s concerns, Stuxnet or no Stuxnet.
Another concern is the Arab uprisings erupting across the region. When I met with Oren, it was just after the Egyptian protests began, and while noteworthy, they had yet to intensify to the level of crisis they have since become. I asked Oren what he and the Israeli government made of the protests in Egypt, Tunisia, and elsewhere.
“Well I think Israel welcomes democratization of the Middle East. I think we see democratization as a factor for stability. Looking forward to any future Palestinian state, we want that Palestinian state to be democratic,” he said. “At the same time we have concerns about the stability of some neighboring states where stability is very important for us and the peace process. And we are concerned lest the uprising in Tunisia goes the way of the uprising in Iran in 1979 — what began as a sort of secular, very diffuse, popular movement was rather quickly hijacked by Islamic extremists because they are the most organized and best-funded of these groups. And they’re very focused. They know exactly what they want. And it’s always a danger in the Middle East that these movements can be hijacked.”
What is true of Oren’s fear for Tunisia, is certainly 10 times more poignant as it applies to Egypt, Israel’s direct neighbor.
Towards the end of the interview, I asked Oren about the “Palestine Papers,” which according to some demonstrate that the Palestinians were willing in 2008 to make major concessions for peace. Specifically, I asked him to respond to comments by Jeremy Ben-Ami, the president of J Street, the self-proclaimed “pro-Israel, pro-peace” lobby. Ben-Ami said that the “Palestine Papers” show that the Palestinians were willing to make peace in 2008 and that the documents reveal the “ongoing intransigence of the Israeli government” which must be overcome by “bold American leadership.”
Oren dismissed the charge, saying, in part, “the fact of the matter is at the end of the day — and this you will hear from all the participants, particularly from Condoleezza Rice who went to the Middle East 26 times to try to mediate this – it was [Palestinian President] Abu Mazen that turned the deal down. It wasn’t [former Israeli Prime Minister] Ehud Olmert who turned it down. That’s a matter of record. And just because it is not in these records, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Everybody knows it. He turned it down.”
As Oren’s assistant came in for a third time to urge the ambassador to wrap up so he could get to his next appointment, I asked a final question, whether the ambassador actually considered J Street, some of whose supporters incidentally don’t think it is a bad idea to have Israeli leaders tried for war crimes, a pro-Israel organization?
“They claim they’re pro-Israel,” he said, providing a less than ringing endorsement of the George Soros-funded organization. “They are calling for Israel to be condemned in the Security Council for the settlements and they are condemning some of our best friends on the Hill. So they can call themselves what they like.”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/01/31/thedc-interview-michael-oren-israels-face-in-america/#ixzz1CdEU3fHE

George Soros’ 8 Most Despicable Acts (UPDATED AFTER THREAT BY SOROS’ LAWYERS)

Posted By Kathy Shaidle On September 22, 2010 @ 8:00 am
Editor’s Note: This post has been revised since it was first published. Because its author, Kathy Shaidle, is Canadian she is not protected by the same first amendment and libel laws that Americans are. Thus despite the fact that the information she presented has floated around the American blogosphere for years and was published in David Horowitz and Richard Poe’s The Shadow Party, because of where she lives Soros’ goons were able to target her with legal threats. That is the nature of the totalitarian personality we’re dealing with here.
Update 9/23/10: Read Joseph Klein’s legal analysis of this story here.
Roger Simon has written:
…were I a biographer — an occupation for which I have nowhere near the patience or perspicacity — [George] Soros would be my first choice for a subject. He is a paradigmatic figure for our times, a kind of a monster created in the twentieth century, inexorably metastasizing into the twenty-first.
Everyone’s favorite “progressive” billionaire George Soros has been stomping all over us up here in the Not-So-Great White North this week. Even if you’ve followed the Soros saga for years, you’ll be forgiven for being a tiny bit shocked that his generously funded attack dogs are now going so far as trying to shut down a TV channel that hasn’t even aired yet — in a foreign country, no less.
So let’s review “George Soros’ Most Despicable Acts,” and not just in Canada– with help from his extensive entry in Discover The Networks…

As I reported a short time ago, millions of Canadians have been looking forward to the launch of our first ever non-leftist, politically incorrect news channel. Sun TV News, due to hit the airwaves in January 2011, was quickly dubbed “Fox News North” by its legion of hysterical, panic-stricken detractors in the legacy media and their servile minions.
It didn’t take long for something called Avaaz.org to release an embarrassingly error-filled petition to keep Sun TV News from getting a license. As Sun (print) reporter Brian Lilley explained:
Avaaz operates out of the New York offices of Res Publica, a collective of left-leaning church groups. In addition to Res Publica, Avaaz is backed by MoveOn.org a lobby group that has taken millions of dollars from currency speculator George Soros.
Outraged by this Soros-sponsored interference, tireless champion of freedom (and fellow Sun writer) Ezra Levant slammed Soros in a newspaper column:
[EDITOR'S NOTE: THIS EXCERPT FROM LEVANT'S COLUMN HAS BEEN REMOVED AFTER KATHY SHAIDLE RECEIVED CORRESPONDENCE FROM SOROS' LAWYERS. NO WORD YET ON IF SOROS' LAWYERS HAVE CONTACTED MEDIA MATTERS FOR REPRINTING THE EXCERPT TOO AT THEIR WEBSITE HERE.]
As you can see, Levant relied upon Soros’ own chilling words in a famous 60 Minutes interview, as well as upon research conducted by David Horowitz and even information included in Soros’ authorized biography.
Levant also gleaned information from readily available, public domain sources, such as the unauthorized Soros biography by Robert Slater, which contains troubling revelations, such as this one:
“I grew up,” Soros told acquaintances later in life, “in a Jewish, anti-Semitic home.” Because he was blue eyed and blond haired — resembling his mother rather than his dark-featured father — George did not look Jewish. In fact, he beamed when other children would tell him, “You don’t look Jewish.” Nothing made him feel happier than to be told he did not have the appearance of a Jew.
Now: as far as I know, neither CBS or Horowitz or Soros’ biographers were ever served libel notices by Soros’ lawyers.
The Sun chain was, however. (Remember: Canada has different libel laws and no First Amendment.)
Today the Sun issued an apology and retraction for Levant’s column.
The Canadian left is crowing: they’ve claimed a scalp and are now energized for the fight to keep a “conservative” newschannel from polluting Canadian airwaves and minds.
Thanks, George!

OK, so all that is pretty hard to top, but it’s also part of Soros’ long ago past. Let’s move up to the George Soros of the present, and the future.
I’m not a fan of infowars.com, but Roger Simon cites them in a report on George Soros’ support of a new group designed to undermine the Tea Party movement:
Soros and the foundation left have launched a website designed to go after the growing Tea Party movement. Teapartytracker.org will post video interviews and blog entries gathered by folks on the false left who never grow weary of demonstrating their outrage over the very idea of a grassroots political effort overthrowing establishment Democrats and Republicans in the district of corporate criminals.
Teapartytracker.org will be sponsored by the NAACP, Think Progress, New Left Media and Media Matters for America. Think Progress is a George Soros operation connected to John Podesta’s Center for American Progress. Podesta is Clinton’s former chief of staff. Media Matters for America is the brainchild of a MoveOn consultant and Podesta’s Center for American Progress. Soros is a major supporter of MoveOn.

“I defended Soros from Republican attacks back in 2003,” writes Reason‘s Matt Welch. Last month, however, he revisited some of Soros’ adventures in the intersection between business and politics, citing a 2004 New Yorker profile of the billionaire activist:
Soros said that he tries to maintain a strict separation between his financial and his philanthropic work. Yet he acknowledged, “There are occasionally symbiotic moments between political and business interests.” He cited one example: an attempt to set up a public-policy think tank in England which had at first looked like a fruitless venture; it had landed him in what promised to be one of the most boring conferences of his life.
But, chatting with British notables, he caught a serendipitous glimpse of a way to break into the closed world of the British bond market, which he soon did. It became “one of the most rewarding weekends of my life,” he said. “I made many millions.”
Soros isn’t known as “the Man Who Broke the Bank of England” for nothing!

According to David Horowitz and co-author Richard Poe, Soros is:
the prime mover in the creation of the so-called “Shadow Democratic Party,” or “Shadow Party,” in 2003. This term refers to a nationwide network of more than five-dozen unions, non-profit activist groups, and think tanks whose agendas are ideologically to the left, and which are engaged in campaigning for the Democrats. This network’s activities include fundraising, get-out-the-vote drives, political advertising, opposition research, and media manipulation.
Soros may be a long-time friend and supporter of Hillary Clinton, but her rival, President Obama, has dutifully carried out at least one of Soros’ prescriptions for the economy. Sounding more like a White House czar or a flaky, low level civil servant than an arch-capitalist, Soros declared in 2008:
“I think we need a large stimulus package which will provide funds for state and local government to maintain their budgets … For such a program to be successful, the federal government would need to provide hundreds of billions of dollars. In addition, another infrastructure program is necessary. In total, the cost would be in the 300 to 600 billion dollar range…. I think this is a great opportunity to finally deal with global warming and energy dependence. The U.S. needs a cap and trade system with auctioning of licenses for emissions rights. I would use the revenues from these auctions to launch a new, environmentally friendly energy policy.”
No wonder Soros wants to keep a close eye on the Tea Party!

George Soros also praised the idea of nationalizing America’s banks. Glenn Beck has been on top of this story and reminded viewers of this CNN transcript on a June 2010 show:
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: Are you satisfied with the job Barack Obama has done?
GEORGE SOROS, BILLIONAIRE INVESTOR: No, I’m not satisfied. He should have replaced compulsorily replaced the capital that was lost.
ZAKARIA: Which in effect would have been nationalizing the banks.
SOROS: This is what they call nationalizing the banks.
Glenn Beck has also talked about Soros’ connection to Obama’s actions following the BP oil spill. Remember Soros’ colleague John Podesta, who we mentioned above? Well, here’s Beck, who reveals that John Podesta has a brother named Tony:
Tony and John got together, and they started a lobbying company. Now, Tony just happens to be the lobbyist for BP, OK? Now, this is weird, because he’s helping coordinate BP and John is helping coordinate the attack on BP, and they’re brothers in a company they both formed. It’s almost like there might be a conflict of interest here.
I’m trying really hard not to believe that this whole response to the oil spill is some sort of scripted progressive horror show here. But the more you find out, it’s almost like there might have been a deal before BP — why talk to the CEO? You didn’t need to. John could just call up Tony. Tony could call John. George [Soros] could set up the deal and Obama would execute it.
Oh, I couldn’t say “execution,” should I? I’m just saying.
Tony Podesta has more than one client. Are you ready? NBC Universal.
Wait a minute. Hold it. Who owns NBC Universal? GE.
Wait a minute, wait a minute — this is starting to make sense. Who owns the smart grid technology that I just told you about in California? GE. Isn’t that weird?
Back to the Center for American Progress again. This president either has A, a lot of connections in real spooky and dark places. Or it’s the saddest story I’ve ever heard. Because every time we start to look into President Obama, we either find a Marxist, a communist, or somebody a part of Crime, Inc. who is screwing you, the taxpayer, to the wall.

Being a big-time mogul and all, Soros’ c.v. wouldn’t be complete with a foray into the glamorous world of film.
In 1996 Soros launched the Soros Documentary Fund with a mission to “spur awareness, action and social change.” Over the ensuing decade, this Fund would help finance the production of several hundred documentaries. In 2001, the Fund’s leadership was turned over to Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute with a continuing mission: “to support the production of documentaries on social justice, human rights, civil liberties, and freedom of expression issues around the world.”
According to journalist Rondi Adamson, most of the documentaries that that the Fund supports “are highly critical of some aspect of American life, capitalism or Western culture,” and generally share Soros’ worldview that “America is a troubling if not sinister influence in the world, that the War on Terror is a fraud and terrorists are misunderstood freedom fighters, and that markets are fundamentally unjust.” Films which have been produced with the aid of Soros’ funding include Soldiers of Conscience (2007), An American Soldier (2008), and My Baghdad Family.
(You’d think a guy as good at making millions as Soros could figure out how to produce a Hollywood anti-war movie that made money for once. Maybe he’ll have to work on the nationalization of Hollywood next.)

In spite of (or is that “because of”?) his first-hand experience of fascist anti-Semitism, Soros labors under the preposterous and potentially fatal illusion that the “resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe” is the fault of… then-President George W. Bush. He told a group of Jewish philanthropists in 2003:
“There is a resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe. The policies of the Bush administration and the [Israeli prime minister Ariel] Sharon administration contribute to that…. I’m critical of those policies…. If we change that direction, then anti-Semitism also will diminish.”
Soros is right about the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe. Like many secular, progressive Jews, he is wrong about its cause. It has nothing to do with the usual boogeyman — the mostly mythical gun-toting, Jew-hating “born again” gentile personified by George Bush — and everything to do with the growing Muslim population abroad. Of the sick, twisted manifiestations of Muslim anti-semitism that are on increasing display in Europe, Soros is silent, stubbornly focusing his immeasurable wealth and power on precisely the wrong target.

And so the story comes full circle. As even this brief overview reveals, George Soros, for all his money and power, hasn’t won all the fights he has taken up. George Bush moved back into the Oval Office in 2004, and Hillary Clinton didn’t take his place in 2008. And those anti-war movies Soros bankrolled have bombed.
Perhaps we need to focus our attention on the causes Soros declines to fund — such as the fight to prevent the further growth of Eurabia — as much as those he does.
Update 9/23/10: Read Joseph Klein’s legal analysis of this story here.
What Is George Soros Afraid Of?
Posted By Joseph Klein On September 23, 2010 @ 12:25 pm In Email,Feature,Leftists Criticize/Mock Conservatives | 12 Comments

My fellow NewsReal blogger Kathy Shaidle, who resides in Canada where protection of free speech is weak to say the least, has unfortunately run right into the George Soros’ legal buzz saw. Threatened with a lawsuit by Soros’ Canadian counsel for referencing and excerpting from an article in the Toronto Sun which claimed that George Soros, as a teenager in his native land of Hungary, had “collaborated with the Nazis,” Kathy revised her post and removed the reference.
Ironically, the main thrust of Kathy’s post was an ongoing effort by Avaaz.org, a left-wing organization that is supported by the George-Soros- funded MoveOn.org, to suppress free speech in Canada . Avaaz filed a petition to keep Sun TV News from getting a license for the rarest of phenomena in Canada – a non-leftist, politically incorrect news channel.
Part of the rationale given by Soros’ legal counsel for demanding that Kathy take down the portion of her post referring to Soros’ alleged behavior as a teenager in Hungary was that the Toronto Sun had retracted the claim and apologized. However, it turns out, the Toronto Sun did so only after having received the same threat of legal action in Canada from Soros’ legal counsel.
Soros and his legal-eagle bullies are exploiting Canada’s defamation laws to suppress free speech, something they know would not work in the United States. It’s the legal counterpart to the political bullying being used to keep a conservative voice off the Canadian airwaves.
By way of background, under Canadian common law, defamation covers any communication that tends to lower the esteem of the subject in the minds of ordinary members of the public. Statements that are probably true but considered harmful are not excluded, nor are political opinions. Intent is always presumed, and it is not necessary to prove that the defendant intended to defame.
Canada even goes further in its criminal law.  The crime of defamatory libel is punishable by up to two years in prison. Defamatory libel is defined as
“matter published, without lawful justification or excuse, that is likely to injure the reputation of any person by exposing him to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or that is designed to insult the person of or concerning whom it is published.”
Fortunately, in the United States, Soros cannot hide as easily behind such legal barriers to free speech. He would be considered what the U.S. Supreme Court has defined as a “public figure.” Therefore, under the “actual malice” legal test protecting things said or written about public figures established by the landmark 1964 U.S. Supreme Court case New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, Soros could win a libel or defamation suit only if he could demonstrate the publisher’s “knowledge that the information was false” or that the information was published “with reckless disregard of whether it was false or not.”
How can anyone know with reasonable certainty what Mr. Soros did or believed as a teenager in Nazi-ruled Hungary unless we are forced to take his own word for it - expressed years after the fact – as the undisputed version of what happened?
The whole issue of Soros’ teenage experiences would not likely have come up but for Soros’ own tendency to throw the Nazi epithet at policies he decides are threatening his vision of the ideal society. For example, Soros was quoted as saying this about President Bush’s war on terrorism:
We are working with a very false frame when we talk about a ‘war on terror,’ and yet it is universally accepted.  President Bush is exploiting it even further ahead of these elections. I would voice my concerns about the similarities between this administration and the Nazis and communist regimes.”
Soros also related the Bush administration to his own early years living under Nazi and Soviet rule.
When I hear Bush say, ‘You’re either with us or against us’, it reminds me of the Germans. My experiences under Nazi and Soviet rule have sensitized me.
Are those experiences under Nazi rule which Soros invokes fair game to examine? Is it legitimate for reporters to question Soros’ account of those experiences, particularly when Soros has chosen to speak about them himself as providing him with some sort of unique moral authority to denounce policies that he disagrees with?
Consider Soros’ own admission on 60 Minutes that he felt no remorse for whatever role, if any, he may have played in connection with the confiscation of Jewish property as he accompanied his Christian godfather on his rounds. Here is an extended excerpt from the 60 Minutes transcript.
KROFT: My understanding is that you went out with this protector of yours who swore that you were his adopted godson.
Mr. SOROS: Yes. Yes.
KROFT: Went out, in fact, and helped in the confiscation of property from the Jews.
Mr. SOROS: Yes. That’s right. Yes.
KROFT: I mean, that’s–that sounds like an experience that would send lots of people to the psychiatric couch for many, many years. Was it difficult?
Mr. SOROS: Not–not at all. Not at all. Maybe as a child you don’t–you don’t see the connection. But it was–it created no–no problem at all.
KROFT: No feeling of guilt?
Mr. SOROS: No.
KROFT: For example that, ‘I’m Jewish and here I am, watching these people go. I could just as easily be there. I should be there.’ None of that?
Mr. SOROS: Well, of course I c–I could be on the other side or I could be the one from whom the thing is being taken away. But there was no sense that I shouldn’t be there, because that was–well, actually, in a funny way, it’s just like in markets–that if I weren’t there–of course, I wasn’t doing it, but somebody else would–would–would be taking it away anyhow. And it was the–whether I was there or not, I was only a spectator, the property was being taken away. So the–I had no role in taking away that property. So I had no sense of guilt.?  (George Soros, 60 Minutes interview transcript, December 20, 1998)
Years after his searing childhood experience in Nazi-occupied Hungary, and while living as a mature adult  in the United States, Soros admitted that he felt not the slightest bit of guilt knowing that his savior was busy confiscating the property of Jews who were not so lucky as Soros was. He said he was just a “spectator.” That’s his story and he is sticking to it, using the threat of lawsuits where he can to knock down any other version.
As a teenager living in fear in Nazi-ruled Hungary, George Soros did what he believed he had to do to survive, which is perfectly understandable. But what is highly disturbing to many people is the amoral detachment with which he looks at that experience today. Soros’ casual comparison of what he witnessed being taken away from Jews in Nazi-ruled Hungary to the “markets” is beyond comprehension.
Soros’ amoral detachment from the consequences of his actions also permeates his financial dealings in the market. Here is an excerpt from Soros’ 2003 interview on PBS with David Brancaccio
BRANCACCIO: Does it worry you, for instance, that maybe some of your actions in the past would have hurt some people, when you withdrew capital from certain countries?
SOROS: Yes. No, you see you can’t… as a market participant, if you want to be successful, I think you just have to look out for your own interests.
BRANCACCIO: It sounds amoral.
SOROS: Pardon?
BRANCACCIO: It sounds amoral.
SOROS: It is amoral. Now, it’s very often understood and understood as immoral. And that is a very different, being immoral. If you hurt people deliberately or you know, that’s immoral. If you break the law, that’s immoral. If you play by the rules, that is the market itself is amoral.
If you impose morality on it, it means that you are actually with your hands tied behind your back and you’re not going to be successful. It’s extremely hard to be successful.
George Soros conducts his political interventions with the same attitude as he does his market interventions -  he is not going to be successful in achieving his goals if his hands are tied behind his back. Thus, he feels entitled to go after, in any manner he chooses, any individuals or organizations whom he personally believes are a threat to his notion of a democratic society.
Yet George Soros seeks to tie his opponents’ hands behind their backs by unleashing his legal team and his Media Matters attack dogs to threaten and smear anyone who dares question his credibility.
What is George Soros afraid of?
Joseph A. Klein is the author of a new book entitled Lethal Engagement: Barack Hussein Obama, the United Nations and Radical Islam.

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The Progressives’ Lies Just Keep On A-Comin’

Posted By Matthew Vadum On January 31, 2011 @ 8:00 am

How out of touch, deluded, and mendacious is the professional Left?
Some group called Democrats.com, “the aggressive progressives,” sent me an email, apparently by mistake. Here’s the text of the errant email: 
Dear VICTORIA,
As you may know, President Obama’s bi-partisan Deficit Commission is considering cuts to Social Security as a way to reduce our national debt.
Social Security is not part of the federal budget, so it does not add a single penny to our national debt. And with high unemployment, cuts to  pensions, and the market crash of 2008, seniors need Social Security more than ever.
What do you think: Should Democrats fight Social Security cuts? Please take our quick 2-question survey.
Democrats.com is the oldest online community of Democratic voters and activists, with over 700,000 members. We work year-round for progressive change and we never ask for contributions. We hope you’ll join us and participate in our online discussions and activism!
Sincerely,
Bob Fertik, President
Democrats.com [emphasis added above]

For what it’s worth the group’s head, Bob Fertik, is a longtime leftist apparatchik who came to the movement via feminism, according to his online bio.
Let’s look at this sentence above from the email: “Social Security is not part of the federal budget, so it does not add a single penny to our national debt.” I’m no accountant but as I understand it what they are saying here may arguably be technically true, but extremely misleading. Even if Social Security obligations are not technically considered to be part of the federal budget that doesn’t mean that U.S. taxpayers aren’t on the hook for those financial commitments that will crush taxpayers in coming years.
As for senior citizens, they tend to be the wealthiest segment of the population, so no, they don’t need Social Security more than ever (if they ever did need it). Social Security redistributes wealth from the productive younger people to old, well established people who don’t need it. It is the world’s longest running Ponzi scheme.
This is liberalism today. Nary a true word escapes the lips of modern leftists who are so busy disguising what they mean and inventing euphemisms in order to trick the public. Their words are cloaked in deception, half-truths, and David Brock/Media Matters-style hairsplitting.
And what kind of group is Democrats.com? All you need to do is poke around the group’s website a little to see what its values are. A recent blog post hails the late historian Howard Zinn, an America-hating Communist Party USA member who spent every waking hour of his career spitting on the nation that gave him succor. Zinn once said “I stand to the left of Mao Zedong.” He was not joking.
What else is there to say about such a group?

Media Matters Blames The Egyptian Crisis on Those Foreign Policy-Controlling, Media-Owning JEWS

Posted By Jeff Dunetz On January 31, 2011 @ 8:00 am

The George Soros-funded Media Matters has been waging a months-long attack on Glenn Beck trying to brand the commentator as a card-carrying anti-Semite. Perhaps before making false charges against Beck, Media Matters should examine its own house of cards.
In a column published Friday on Media Matters’ Political Correction site, MJ Rosenberg claimed that the current Egyptian crisis was the fault of AIPAC and the “Israel Lobby.” For those of you who have been living on a different planet, “Israel Lobby” is a polite way of saying “Jews.” It is based on the old anti-Semitic canard that the Jews control the United States government.

Two years ago, Media Matters, which has received major funding from financier George Soros, hired Rosenberg (who is Jewish) to chip away at the image of the Jewish state, similar to what Soros did in creating J Street. MJ Rosenberg was perfect for this role as Jewish-Lobby conspiracy theorist, bully with a keyboard, self-proclaimed violator of national security.
To be honest, I have only crossed paths with Rosenberg’s writing twice before, in the matter of Chas Freeman–President Obama’s pick for NIC Chairman who was a tool for both the Saudi and Chinese government–and in the matter of Steve Rosen, the former AIPAC official who was wrongly charged with espionage (the charges were dropped this year). In both cases, Rosenberg’s strategy has been is to attack people personally, throw around the “N” word (neo-con), twist words around (including mine) and accuse those of us who differ from his point of view as hell-bent on running the foreign policy of the United States of America.
In Friday’s piece, Rosenberg says the reason for the Egyptian rebellion is the failure to resolve the Israeli/Palestinian issue:
If one needs additional proof that the “pro-Israel” lobby and the policies it dictates to U.S. policymakers are bad for both the U.S. and Israel, look no further than what is happening in Egypt.
The regime that the Israeli government and its U.S. lobby have depended upon to enforce the status quo is going down. It is not clear when, but it’s going to be soon, much sooner than anyone ever anticipated. And you can be sure that any democratic government that takes Mubarak’s place is not going to play the role of America’s (let alone Israel’s) enforcer in the Middle East.
Hopefully, the Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty will survive — thousands of lives on both sides have been saved by President Carter’s Camp David Treaty — but there are no guarantees. Far from it.
Of course, no one would even be worried about the peace treaty if the Israelis had agreed to implement the critical second part of the Camp David Accords.
That was the part that would have ended the occupation. But the Israelis chose to ignore it and the lobby and the ever-faithful Congress blocked Carter’s efforts to push it through.
It’s interesting that when one goes through the Wikileaks documents about the Middle East none of the secret cables ties the Israeli-Palestinian issue to those in the other countries. In both the recent unrest in Tunisia and in Egypt not once was there a mention of the Palestinians or Israelis except for mentioning both parties would prefer to see Mubarak remain in power.
Rosenberg indicates that the reason for the lack of Israeli/Palestinian peace is Israel, Congress and of course the Israel (Jewish) Lobby. I guess he forgot to mention that Yasser Arafat walked away from a favorable deal at the end of the Clinton Administration and Mahmoud Abbas walked away from a similar deal at the end of the Bush Administration. Rosenberg again:
I am often accused of harping on the lobby’s baleful influence. I plead guilty. But it’s my obligation because (1) I know from personal experience — 15 years on Capitol Hill and four at AIPAC — how it operates, (2) I know how little it really cares about Israel, and (3) I am free to tell the truth about it. If I worked in the mainstream media or in the U.S. government, I wouldn’t be.
How do you like that, we Jews control U.S. foreign policy and the run the media–damn, we are good. But wait; according to MJ Rosenberg of Media Matters, if it weren’t for the Jews, America would be best friends with Iran:
Another area where the lobby has done so much damage is in our relations with Iran.
AIPAC is dedicated to “crippling” sanctions and eventually war with Iran if sanctions don’t bring down the regime. Later this spring, AIPAC will host its annual conference, which will, as has been the case for a decade, feature mind-numbing warnings about the danger posed by an Iranian nuclear bomb.
So not only do we control everything, but we made the last two Presidents push sanctions on those innocent Iranians and those sanctions are only being imposed to help Israel. Wow!
Perhaps the Media Matters columnist should have read the recent accounts released by Wikileaks:
According to the leaked document, part of the conversation between King Abdullah and the US officials touched on Saudi attitudes towards Iran, its influence in Iraq and the need to increase pressure on the Islamic Republic.
The cable quotes former Saudi Ambassador to the US Adel al-Jubeir recalling, “the King’s frequent exhortations to the US to attack Iran and so put an end to its nuclear weapons program. ‘He told you to cut off the head of the snake,’ he recalled to the Charge, adding that working with the US to roll back Iranian influence in Iraq is a strategic priority for the King and his government.”
During a meeting on Dec. 27, 2005 with the commander of the United States Central Command, Gen. John P. Abizaid, military leaders from the United Arab Emirates “all agreed with Abizaid that Iran’s new President Ahmadinejad seemed unbalanced, crazy even,” one cable reports. A few months later, the Emirates’ defense chief, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed of Abu Dhabi, told General Abizaid that the United States needed to take action against Iran “this year or next.”
I know, Media Matters must think that the Jews control the governments of Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi also.
Media Matters and MJ Rosenberg are promoting anti-Semitic stereotypes that if they continue to grow may eventually put American Jews in danger. Instead of focusing on what Glenn Beck says about one Jew–George Soros–Media Matters should focus on what MJ Rosenberg is saying about all Jews in their name.

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Genocide Supporter Noam Chomsky Rears His Head Again on Egypt

Posted By Robert Wargas On January 31, 2011 @ 10:47 am

Whenever there is talk of an “open letter” circulating among academics, you can be sure the issue is serious enough to involve some aspect of U.S. foreign policy, usually Israel. (Remember the push for “divestment”?) And in that case it’s safe to assume that the vile creature from M.I.T. has been roused from his reptilian catacomb to endorse it.
Now, American academics, including the not great and not yet late Noam Chomsky, have put their names to an online letter addressed to President Obama that urges us
“…to move beyond rhetoric to support the democratic movement sweeping over Egypt. As citizens, we expect our president to uphold those values.”
The letter also states:
“There is another lesson from this crisis, a lesson not for the Egyptian government but for our own. In order for the United States to stand with the Egyptian people it must approach Egypt through a framework of shared values and hopes, not the prism of geostrategy.”
If Chomsky’s name weren’t on this letter, I might think that that last statement sounded vaguely neoconservative. It has the universalist feel of an actual endorsement of Western values, and it seems to assume we might be capable of doing something other than waging war for capitalism.
The most revealing statement, however, is the one that closes the letter. This one reveals why Chomsky bothered with the letter at all. It enjoins Obama to
“…undertake a comprehensive review of US foreign policy on the major grievances voiced by the democratic opposition in Egypt and all other societies of the region.”
Vague language means all sorts of rhetorical Trojan Horses can slip by unnoticed. By “democratic opposition” they don’t mean those Egyptians who genuinely want to cast off a dictatorship. When one hears the word “democracy” coming from academics, one knows at once what they mean by the word. Throw in Chomsky’s name and the forces of anti-Israel eliminationism can’t be far off. I of course can’t prove it, but the hope that a new Egypt might make nice with the Muslim Brotherhood must send a frisson of excitement up Chomsky’s crooked spine.
The letter’s language is vague for another reason. By asking Obama to support “democracy,” all sorts of people can say that they, too, support the idea of representative government (and that they even signed a letter proving it), so that if democracy does fail in Egypt, the United States has already been set up to take the blame for its failure to “review” its foreign policy, i.e., repudiate Israel.
It’s not yet clear to what extent the Islamist forces in Egypt will manifest themselves if this social unrest leads to a democratic (or should I write “democratic”) government in Egypt. Insofar as they do, Chomsky will have his democracy—the type that won’t mind reviving the old Six Day War/Yom Kippur War coalition.

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25 Activists Arrested After Protesting Conservative Koch Bros. Meeting

Posted on January 31, 2011 at 7:26am by  Jonathon M. Seidl

Twenty-five people were arrested for trespassing Sunday as hundreds protested outside a strategy session of conservative political donors hosted by brothers David and Charles Koch at a resort near Palm Springs, CA authorities said.
The demonstration had been arranged with authorities, but some protesters crossed the street to the entrance of the Rancho Las Palmas Resort where they were met by deputies in riot gear, Riverside County Deputy Melissa Nieburger said. They were arrested without a struggle, booked at Indio Jail, and released.
According to Reuters, the rally was organized by the liberal group Common Cause, an anti-conservative group that charges the Koch brothers of influencing politics with their money. It was also sponsored by the leftist group  Code Pink, whose founder Jodie Evans was reportedly one of those arrested. Trumpeting the message of those groups, rally speakers accused the brothers of being “anarchists with a checkbook”:

George Soros and a branch of the Tides Foundation are listed as donors in the most recent annual report listed on Common Cause’s website.
In addition to the rally, the group also held a pre-protest panel discussion that included Van Jones. After the event, the group posted a quote from Jones on its Facebook page:

Sunday was the second day of the four-day, invitation-only conclave of about 200 wealthy conservative political activists. It was organized by the Koch brothers, whose Wichita, KS-based Koch Industries is one of the nation’s largest privately held companies.
The brothers have held similar conclaves in the Palm Springs area and Aspen, Colo., for years, but this conference was met with increased scrutiny. Liberal groups have targeted the brothers for criticism because of their funding of the fight against global warming laws and their financial support of Americans for Prosperity, an organization that has worked closely with tea party groups. It was the environmental aspect of the brothers’ work that brought out Greenpeace activists:


The group did not say who was attending the conference, and reporters were not allowed inside the resort, but the strategy sessions in years past have included radio talkers Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, and Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, according to The New York Times.
Organizer Samantha Corbin told City News Service the protesters were there to “voice opposition to the Koches’ funding of climate denial groups, far-right political candidates and anti-health care reform efforts.”
Protesters carried signs reading “Troops Home Now,“ ”Medicare for All“ and ”Tea Party Founded and Funded By The Kochs.”
Several dozen people dressed in hazardous materials suits and held police tape and a banner that read “Quarantine the Kochs.”
The protest, which had nearly 1,000 people at its peak, lasted about two hours. And according to other video of the event posted on YouTube, at least one protest admitted to being a socialist while another called for “revolution now!” like is currently happening in Egypt:


Koch Industries defended the gathering as an exercise in democratic assembly and service to the country.
“This conference brings together some of our nation’s most successful business leaders, job creators and those who make it a priority to support their communities and our country in significant ways,” said Nancy Pfotenhauer, a spokeswoman for the company.
“We respect all Americans’ rights to free speech and to peaceably assemble,” she said in a written statement. “It is disappointing that some members of the group protesting today made the choice to not be respectful of the community or of our right to meet.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
(H/T: Gateway Pundit)

revolution

Take their money

20110128_Greenpeace_Delivers_Message_to_Koch_H264.mov

Rally In Rancho Mirage ~ Stage Announcements 1-30-11

Cairo: Anger starting to focus on Israel, US

By BY MELANIE LIDMAN, JPOST CORRESPONDENT IN CAIRO
30/01/2011  

Reporters Notebook: "Where is your democracy?" protesters ask in anti-American, anti-Mubarak rallies. 
CAIRO – Saturday’s optimism on the streets of Cairo for imminent political change gave way to anger on Sunday, as thousands of demonstrators became increasingly frustrated with the lack of response from major world leaders, especially the US.
During the main protest on Sunday in downtown Cairo, one man painted a 20- meter-long message in flowing Arabic cursive that echoed across the square: “Go Away, Mubarak, you are from the Americans, and you’re working for them!”
Fighter jets swoop over Cairo protests in show of force
Egyptians understand that the world is waiting to see if President Hosni Mubarak falls to popular pressure before major leaders decide which side to support. But this is infuriating the demonstrators, who realize that six days of unrest have not accomplished their goal and that they need united international pressure in order to topple the almost-30-year incumbent.
The protests have lacked a clear leader to unite them and provide an alternative to Mubarak, and demonstrators are beginning to focus their wrath not just on Mubarak and the country’s widespread corruption, but also on the United States and, to a lesser extent, Israel. They blame Israel and the US for supporting a government because it is convenient for them, not because it is good for the Egyptian people.
“The USA does not support democracy; they’re supporting Israel, which is like their baby,” said Ahmed, a 26-year-old Cairo resident. “They think Egypt is functional because it’s in favor of their considerations.”
“I don’t care if we have peace [with Israel] or not,” Ahmed continued, echoing the indifference of many demonstrators who don’t have a clear agenda for what they want a future Egypt to look like, as long as it does not include Mubarak. “But will Israel allow us to have a real president? For example, Turkey elected an Islamic government, but it was their choice. Will Israel give us the freedom to make the same choice?” he asked.
Demonstrators are relying on the foreign press to get their message to Obama.
“Isn’t this democracy?” they asked me over and over when I said I was a journalist from America, incredulous that the country held as the pinnacle of world democracy could ignore such widespread popular sentiment.
“Obama has to be on our side. Where is your democracy?” asked Osam L, who works at a foreign bank in Cairo.
“You say Arabs are just donkeys, but the USA is supporting the system, not the people.”
The Jewish community in Cairo and Alexandria both declined to speak with the media, but told The Jerusalem Post that all of its members were safe and going about their daily routine as normally as possible.
Life is slowly returning to Cairo streets after nearly a week of unrest. Many of the stores in the downtown area remained shuttered, but convenience stores and cell phone kiosks were doing brisk business. There was significantly more traffic on the roads, and public transportation and trash collection were partially operational.
At 3:55 pm on Sunday, two fighter jets flew low over the city half a dozen times, ostensibly to remind everyone of the 4:00 pm curfew. The scare tactic was successful – by 4:30, the streets were mostly empty of cars as throngs of people headed on foot toward Tahrir Square.
Sunday’s protests were much less violent, although there was more anger directed at international leaders.
“What you are seeing here is an explosion. We have no other choice,” yelled one demonstrator.
The main protest in Tahrir Square continued to be attended by thousands of demonstrators from all walks of life – toddlers with small flags draped around their shoulders raising a fist in solidarity, old men in traditional garb walking slowly with canes near the sidewalks, giggling school girls, whole families marching arm and arm, young professionals as well as laborers.
“Those people that say we’re out here because of food or oil prices, that’s not true,” said Osam L. “I have enough to eat, thank God. I’m here for my freedom.”

 
All rights reserved © 1995 - 2009 The Jerusalem Post. 

Why We Should Fear the Moslem Brothers

January 31, 2011
By Karin McQuillan

As we follow the unfolding story in Egypt, we are torn between hope and fear, hope that democracy will gain a toehold, fear that the fundamentalist Moslem Brothers could take control of Egypt.  Perhaps you have heard the Moslem Brothers are the oldest and largest radical Islamic group, the grandfather of Hezbollah, Hamas, and al-Qaeda.

What you haven't been told is this:  the Moslem Brothers were a small, unpopular group of anti-modern fanatics unable to attract members, until they were adopted by Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich beginning in the 1930s.  Under the tutelage of the Third Reich, the Brothers started the modern jihadi movement, complete with a genocidal program against Jews.  In the words of Matthias Kuntzel, "The significance of the Brotherhood to Islamism is comparable to that of the Bolshevik Party to communism: It was and remains to this day the ideological reference point and organizational core for all later Islamist groups, including al-Qaeda and Hamas."

What is equally ominous for Jews and Israel is that despite Mubarak's pragmatic co-existence with Israel for the last 30 years, every Egyptian leader from Nasser, through Sadat, to Mubarak, has enshrined Nazi Jew-hatred in mainstream Egyptian culture, out of both conviction and political calculation.   Nasser, trained by Nazis as a youth, spread the genocidal conspiracy theories of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, making it a best seller throughout the Arab world.  On the Ramadan following 9/11, Mubarak presided over a 30-week long TV series dramatizing the Elders and its genocidal message.  

It is impossible to assess the danger posed by a takeover of Egypt today by the Moslem Brothers without knowing that Nazism launched the Brothers and is still at their core. This response to modernity and to Jews was not predetermined by Egyptian history or culture.  It was Germany under Hitler that changed the course of history for Egypt and the Middle East.

How do we know all this?  We know it because the Third Reich was a meticulous keeper of records.  We have the memos, the planning documents, the budgets, even photos and films of the Reich's spectacularly success campaign, implemented by the Moslem Brothers, to turn the Middle East into a hotbed of virulent Jew-hatred.  We have the minutes, the photo and the memo of understanding, when Hitler and the head of the Moslem Brothers in Palestine, the Mufti of Jerusalem, shook hands on a plan for a Final Solution in the Middle East.

We have the records of this meeting, in which Hitler and the head of the Moslem Brothers in Palestine shook hands on a Final Solution for the Middle East - years before the creation of Israel.

The Moslem Brothers helped Hitler succeed in genocide by slamming shut the door to safety in Palestine. This was a key part of the success of the Final Solution.  The anti-Jewish riots in Palestine that lead the British to cave to Arab pressure and shut off Jewish escape are well known -- how many of us know they were funded by Hitler?  Winston Churchill protested the closing of Palestine to the Jews in the House of Commons, arguing against the appeasement of Nazi-funded Arab violence :

"So far from being persecuted, the Arabs have crowded into the country and multiplied till their population has increased more than even all world Jewry could lift up the Jewish population. ...We are now asked to submit, and this is what rankles most with me, to an agitation which is fed with foreign money and ceaselessly inflamed by Nazi and by Fascist propaganda."

Who knows how many Jews would have escaped Hitler if the Jewish National Home in Palestine had remained open to them? 

We do know that without the work of Hitler's allies, the Moslem Brothers, many signs indicate that Israel would have been a welcome neighbor in the Middle East, but this path was closed off by Moslem Brotherhood terrorism.  This is not ‘ancient history.'  According to Prime Minister Netanyahu, Yasser Arafat (born Mohammed Al-Husseini, in Cairo) adopted the name Yasser to honor the Moslem Brothers' terror chief, who threw moderate Palestinians into pits of scorpions and snakes, eliminated the entire Nashashibi family of Jerusalem because they welcomed Jews into Palestine, and drove forty thousand Arabs into exile. The corpses of their victims would be left in the street for days, a shoe stuck in their mouth, as a lesson for any Arab who believed in tolerating a Jewish homeland.  Arafat as a member of the Moslem Brothers was directly trained by Nazi officers  who were invited to Egypt after the fall of Hitler in Europe. 

Like the pro-democracy demonstrators out in the streets of Cairo this week, immediately after World War I, Egypt was filled with hopes for developing a modern, tolerant society. The Egyptian revolution of 1919 united the country's Moslems, Christians and Jews around the slogan, "Liberty, Equality, Brotherhood."  The constitution of 1923 was completely secular, establishing a constitutional monarchy. It took Western democracy as a model and worked for the equal status of women.  Jews were an accepted part of public life.  There were Jewish members of parliament.  The Zionist movement was accepted with "considerable sympathy," because the government's priority was to maintain good relations between the three most important religious groups - Moslems, Jews and Christian Copts.  Today the Jews are gone and the Copts are viciously persecuted.  But in 1919, there was even an Egyptian section of the International Zionist Organization.  Its founder, Leon Castro, a Jew, was also the spokesman of the largest Egyptian political party, the Wafd, related to the largest opposition party taking part in this week's demonstrations.

When in March 1928, the charismatic preacher Hassan al-Banna founded the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt, it was a flop.  It promoted world domination by Islam and the restoration of the Caliphate, focusing on a complete subjugation of women.  In its first decade, the Moslem Brothers attracted only 800 members.

Then Hitler ascended to power.  A branch of the Nazi party was set up in Cairo.  The Egyptian government was told that if they did not begin to persecute their Jews, Germany would boycott Egyptian cotton. When the government caved and began a press campaign and discriminatory measures against Jews, they were rewarded by Germany becoming the second largest importer of Egyptian goods.  The Egyptian public was impressed by the propaganda about Germany's economic progress and impressive Nazi mass marches.  The pro-fascist Young Egypt movement was founded in 1933.  Abdel Nasser, later Egypt's most famous leader, was a member and remained loyal to Nazi ideology for the rest of his career. During the war there was a popular street song in the Middle East, "Allah in heaven, Hitler on earth."

In the 1930's, the Third Reich poured men, money, weapons and propaganda training into the Moslem Brotherhood.  It was the Reich that taught the fundamentalists to focus their anger on the Jews instead of women. By war's end, thanks entirely to Hitler's tutelage and direct support, the brotherhood had swelled to a million members and Jew-hatred had become central to mainstream Arab culture.  Iranian Ayatollah Khomeini listened daily to the Nazi propaganda broadcast from Berlin by Moslem Brother Haj Amin al-Husseini.  So did every Arab with a radio, throughout the war, as it was the most popular programming in the Middle East.  Thanks to Hitler, the Moslem Brothers enshrined antisemitism as the main organizing force of Middle East politics for the next 80 years.

Egyptian society has lived in Hitler's world of hate ever since.  According to leading expert on the Third Reich's fusion with Islamism in Egypt, Matthias Kunztel, "On this point (Jews), the entire Egyptian society has been Islamized.  In Egypt the ostracism and demonization of Jews is not a matter of debate, but a basic assumption of everyday discourse.  As if the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty had never been signed, Israel and Israelis are today totally boycotted...be it lawyers, journalists, doctors or artists...all Egyptian universities, sports associations, theatres and orchestras."  "If there is one theme in contemporary Egypt which unites Islamists, Liberals, Nasserites and Marxists, it is the collective fantasy of the common enemy in the shape of Israel and the Jews, which almost always correlates with the wish to destroy Israel."
In launching the Moslem Brother's modern jihadi movement, Hitler did far more than enshrine antisemitism in the Middle East.  As if some kind of divine punishment, the creation of jihadism also sabotaged the move towards modernity and representative government, ruining hopes for freedom and prosperity for the Arab people.  The Brothers were the excuse for Mubarak's 30 years of emergency rule.  The Brothers were central to both PLO and Hamas, killing all hope for peaceful coexistence and prosperity for the Palestinian people.  They had an early role in founding the Ba'ath Party in Syria and Iraq, turning those countries over to kleptocratic tyrants.  Moslem Brothers taught Osama bin Laden, and their philosophy is considered the foundational doctrine of al-Qaeda.

Will history repeat itself?  Or will the Egyptian people take back their country, throw off Hitler's long shadow, and begin again on the hopeful path to democracy and a decent life that they began at the beginning of the modern era?
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/01/why_we_should_fear_the_moslem.html at January 31, 2011 - 09:58:19 AM CST

The Egyptian Revolt and Imperial Islamism

January 31, 2011
By G. Murphy Donovan

The Arab revolt underway in Egypt may be unique.  Previous popular uprisings were underwritten by anti-colonial sentiments.  Contemporary revolts (including unrest in Algeria, Tunisia, Yemen, and Jordan) target nationalist or secular governments.  The wealthiest Arab states, Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, have been financing the ideological struggle against Arab secularism through surrogates like the Egypt-based Muslim Brotherhood (al Ikwan) for decades.  Now the most populous state in the Arab League, Egypt, may fall to the Brotherhood like a ripe pomegranate.

A brief history of previous Arab revolts offers some perspective.

The corrupt Ottoman caliphate in Istanbul was the target for the first Arab revolt (1916-19).  The goal of Sherif Hussein bin Ali was a unified Arab nation stretching from the Levant through the Arabian Peninsula.  Bin Ali's revolt against the Turks was successful with the help of the British -- and then undermined by colonials with a different agenda.  London had little sympathy for Arab nationalism; the English enemy in WWI was the German/Turkish axis.

Thus, the first conflict set the stage for an inevitable second revolt (1936-39) during WWII against the British and a nascent Zionist Movement.  This uprising was limited to Palestine and was less successful than the first.  Both revolts were, for the most part, footnotes to larger world wars where Arab interests were subordinated to big power politics.

Nonetheless, the two 20th-century Arab insurrections were part of a historical vector which eventually saw the creation of 22 separate nation-states.  The vision of Arab unity, however, was savaged by centrifugal tribal and national sentiments.  Still, those early revolutions laid the political and military foundation for the so-called Arab-Israeli struggle which has defined war and politics in the Middle East for the last sixt years. For many Arabs, including Arab-Americans like Edward Said and Helen Thomas, the creation of Israel was merely another vestige of colonial injustice.

Today, the ongoing revolt in Egypt is nothing like previous struggles.  Sunni angst has turned inward after six decades of terror and thrashing against Israel and real or imagined enemies in Europe and America.  The apostate is slowly replacing the infidel as a primary target. In the process, radical Sunnis may have adopted the Shia mold of irredentist renewal.

Compare the many futile and impotent Arab wars of the 20th century to the Persian revolution since 1979, a model of theocratic efficiency.  Indeed, Iran is now on the cusp of first-world nuclear status, defying an impotent West and positioning itself to challenge Arab/Sunni hegemony within dar al Islam.  Lebanon and Iraq are poised to join the Shiite Crescent, too.  Persian revanchism could well be the new model for radical Sunni imperialism in the Arab world.

Al Jazeera has been covering the Tunisian and Egyptian revolts with breathless abandon, celebrating the disturbances as the legitimate and "peaceful" aspirations of an oppressed fellaheen.  Somehow the looting, arson, and body bags in Cairo belie such arguments. Emirate propaganda organs like al Jazeera always speak with two voices; English language broadcasts offer dulcet tones of peace and moderation, putting the best spin on the insurrection, while Arabic language programs howl with hate and invective using expatriate Egyptian Brotherhood spokesmen.

Apologists defend the Muslim Brotherhood as a political reform movement and ignore the Qur'anic imperialism which underwrites the movement and its objectives.  Indeed, the incendiary writings of Sayiid Qutb and, more recently, Yusuf al-Qaradawi (below), a Qatar-based firebrand, are almost exclusively predicated on Islamic religious literature.

Al-Qaradawi is an archetypical mouthpiece for the worst Brotherhood vitriol.  He is the author of numerous books and tracts, but more significantly, he hosts the most popular broadcast on the al-Jazeera network.  His show, "Sharia and Life," reaches over 50 million Arab-speaking viewers with a message that reeks of paranoia, misogyny, homophobia, racism, violent jihad, and all manner of anti-democratic venom.  Recently one of his fatwas alleged that Hitler was "Allah's" messenger punishing the Jews.  In another pronouncement, al-Qaradawi justified female circumcision and wife-beating.  He actually claimed that some Arab women enjoy physical abuse.  Al-Qaradawi also maintains a significant online presence.

It is no coincidence that al Jazeera and al-Qaradawi find refuge and financial support in Doha.  The Emirates and Saudi Arabia, to paraphrase Churchill, seek to appease the Sunni crocodile, hoping that Arab autocrats will be eaten last.  The many grievances of the Arab street are real enough; but al Jazeera, a Brotherhood flack, has been shut down in Egypt for prudent reasons.

The Muslim Brotherhood, officially illegal, is the largest and most well-organized political alternative to the Mubarak regime.  Al Ikwan, like Hezb'allah in Lebanon, is in fact a government within a government -- sedition leavened with health and humanitarian services.

Throughout the current revolt, al Ikwan in Egypt has maintained a low profile for good reasons.  If Mubarak is deposed by a "people's revolt," surely to be followed by some kind of "moderate" interim government, then the Muslim brotherhood is in the catbird seat to make Egypt's first legitimate election the last.  Indeed, Egypt could be a replay of Algeria in 1991.  Only this time, there is little chance that a theocratic electoral victory in Arabia's most populous nation will be nullified.

Al Jazeera and its American network "partners" seemed to be channeling Jimmy Carter on the Sunday morning chat shows.  Christiane Amanpour on ABC spoke of a "popular uprising" and freedom.  Martha Raddatz spoke of "human rights and democracy."  Tom Friedman on NBC courted the "moderate Muslim center."  Possibly worst of all was the BBC's Katty Kay suggesting that the Muslim Brotherhood be accommodated in any post-Mubarak government.

The hagiographic network coverage of the Egyptian revolt ignores every recent political precedent in the near East; the Iran revolt gave birth to the first Shia theocracy, and a recent election elevated terrorist Hezb'allah in Lebanon.  The electoral victory of fundamentalism in Algeria in 1991 had to be undone by the Army.  An election also brought terrorist Hamas to power in Palestine.  And now Tunisia and Egypt are tottering towards the abyss.  Electoral alternatives to the status quo in the Arab League are not likely to be enlightened or democratic.

The Irish, who know more than a little about the debits and credits of revolution, like to say that the "devil you know is better than the devil you don't."  Mubarak may be a flawed ally, but other options are monstrous.  Not only is Egypt a linchpin for Middle East stability, but it, like Turkey until recently, has been a bulwark against the worst excesses of Islamism.  If Egypt falls to Islam's worst, the outlook for Israel and the rest of the Muslim world is bleak indeed.

The loss of Egypt to Islamic theocrats will be more consequential than the loss of Iran.  Elections are just another arrow in the fundamentalist quiver.  Unfortunately, too many naïve observers in the West confuse voting with democracy.

The stakes in this most recent Arab revolt have little or nothing to do with Egyptian or any other variety of Arab nationalism.  Democracy, economics, and social justice are minor players, too.  Another victory for Sunni radicals is the prize if the Egyptian revolt is successful.  Egypt represents a tipping point -- a validation of Imperial Sunni Islam and another stimulus for religious extremism. 

The author is a former Intelligence analyst with tours at HQ USAF, DIA, CIA, and NSA.  He writes also at Agnotology in Journalism and G. Murphy Donovan.
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/01/the_egyptian_revolt_and_imperi.html at January 31, 2011 - 09:56:44 AM CST

UN Secretary General Rants Against Capitalism at Davos: “We Need a Revolution”

January 30, 2011

The whole world has been focused on Egypt’s violent revolution and its potential impact on oil prices and power balance,  but Egypt is not on the menu for  the elitist world leaders who have been meeting in Davos for the World Economic Forum.  They have been binging on booze, reindeer and lobster and just screwed themselves counter-clockwise into the ground on global warmism and esoteric population-control issues.
Luckily, the Climate-gate scientific community is on duty.  You won’t BELIEVE what the United Nations Secretary General has said in a speech there.
Update:  Soros has his IRISH UP
Hat tip: Robert Ferguson, Science and Public Policy Institute blog
UN Sec. Gen. – Capitalism is “Environmental Suicide” Says “We Need a Revolution”
Source: haunting the library
UN Secretary General, Ban-Ki Moon has launched an astonishing attack on the current economic system of Western-style capitalsim, saying that it was dangerous and outdated in the light of global warming, and calling for a new economic paradigm.
Recent reports have noted that Ban-Ki Moon has said he will take a hands-off approach to global warming, and many have interpreted this to mean that he will leave it to the scientists and national Governments to decide.
But his latest comments, reported in The Guardian, make it clear that instead Ban-Ki Moon is switching from a narrow focus on global warming to a much wider spectrum attack on the current Western style of capitalism generally, on the grounds that it is not environmentally sustainable. The Guardian reports:
The world’s current economic model is an environmental “global suicide pact” that will result in disaster if it isn’t reformed, Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, warned today.
Ban said that political and business leaders need to embrace economic innovation in order to save the planet.
“We need a revolution,” he told a panel at the World Economic Forum inDavos, Switzerland, on how best to make the global economy sustainable. “Climate change is also showing us that the old model is more than obsolete.”
He called the current economic model a recipe for “national disaster” and said: “We are running out of time. Time to tackle climate change, time to ensure sustainable … growth.” The Guardian revealed yesterday that Ban is ending his hands-on efforts to reach a global climate deal through UN negotiations, and move to focus on a broader sustainability agenda.
Guardian. Ban-Ki Moon: World’s Economic Model is ‘Environmental Suicide
The Indonesian President condemned suggestions that his nation and other under-developed countries should stop developing and stay where they are to help protect the environment. Bill Gates, a father of three children, defended this, and suggested that limiting the number of children would be a better way to limit carbon emissions:
This view was partly shared by Gates, who said that “you cannot have a just world by telling people to use less energy than the average European”. One way to cap the world’s consumption and carbon emissions would be to invest in family planning said Gates, who has invested much of his fortune in health projects in the developing world.
The panel at which Ban-Ki Moon made his attack on capitalism was chaired by Thomas Friedman of the New York Times who said he hoped that by next year he would start to see some action on what was being discussed.
More on Davos :
Indian CEOs spend big to attend forum
At Davos, Emerging Markets Were the Stars
TAKE A LOOK-World Economic Forum in Davos
At Davos, men outnumber women by over 5 to 1
DealBook: Of Wealth and (Un)Happiness

Egypt and Tunisia usher in the new era of global food revolutions

Political risk has returned with a vengeance. The first food revolutions of our Malthusian era have exposed the weak grip of authoritarian regimes in poor countries that import grain, whether in North Africa today or parts of Asia tomorrow.

As we sit glued to Al-Jazeera watching authority crumble in the cultural and political capital of the Arab world, exhilaration can turn quickly to foreboding.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard 7:30PM GMT 30 Jan 2011

If you insist on joining the emerging market party at this stage of the agflation blow-off, avoid countries with an accelerating gap between rich and poor. Cairo’s EGX stock index has dropped 20pc in nine trading sessions.
Events have moved briskly since a Tunisian fruit vendor with a handcart set fire to himself six weeks ago, and in doing so lit the fuse that has detonated Egypt and threatens to topple the political order of the Maghreb, Yemen, and beyond.
As we sit glued to Al-Jazeera watching authority crumble in the cultural and political capital of the Arab world, exhilaration can turn quickly to foreboding.
This is nothing like the fall of the Berlin Wall. The triumph of secular democracy was hardly in doubt in central Europe. Whatever the mix of aspirations of those on the streets of Cairo, such uprisings are easy prey for tight-knit organizations – known in the revolutionary lexicon as Leninist vanguard parties.
In Egypt this means the Muslim Brotherhood, whether or not Nobel laureate Mohammed El Baradei ever served as figleaf. The Brotherhood is of course a different kettle of fish from Iran’s Ayatollahs; and Turkey shows that an ‘Islamic leaning’ government can be part of the liberal world – though Turkish premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan once let slip that democracy was a tram “you ride until you arrive at your destination, then you step off."
The surge in global food prices since the summer – since Ben Bernanke signalled a fresh dollar blitz, as it happens – is not the underlying cause of Arab revolt, any more than bad harvests in 1788 were the cause of the French Revolution.
Yet they are the trigger, and have set off a vicious circle. Vulnerable governments are scrambling to lock up world supplies of grain while they can. Algeria bought 800,000 tonnes of wheat last week, and Indonesia has ordered 800,000 tonnes of rice, both greatly exceeding their normal pace of purchases. Saudi Arabia, Libya, and Bangladesh, are trying to secure extra grain supplies.
The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said its global food index has surpassed the all-time high of 2008, both in nominal and real terms. The cereals index has risen 39pc in the last year, the oil and fats index 55pc.
The FAO implored goverments to avoid panic responses that “aggravate the situation”. If you are Hosni Mubarak hanging on in Cairo’s presidential palace, do care about such niceties?
France’s Nicolas Sarkozy blames the commodity spike on hedge funds, speculators, and the derivatives market (largely in London). He vowed to use his G20 presidency to smash the racket, but then Mr Sarkozy has a penchant for witchhunts against easy targets.
The European Commission has been hunting for proof to support his claims, without success. Its draft report – to be released last Wednesday, but withdrawn under pressure from Paris – reached exactly the same conclusion as investigators from the IMF, and US and British regulators.
“There is little evidence that the price formation process on commodity markets has changed in recent years with the growing importance of derivatives markets”, it said.
As Jeff Currie from Goldman Sachs tirelessly points out, future contracts are neutral. For every trader making money by going long on wheat, sugar, pork bellies, zinc, or crude oil, there is a trader losing money on the other side. It is a paper transfer between financial players.
You have to buy and hoard the vast amounts of these bulk commodities to have much impact on the price, which is costly and difficult to do, though people do park crude on floating tankers sometimes, and Chinese firms allegedly stashed copper in warehouses last year.
But that is not what commodity index funds with $150bn are actually doing with food, base metals, and energy. Only governments have strategic petroleum and grain reserves big enough to make a difference.
The immediate cause of this food spike was the worst drought in Russia and the Black Sea region for 130 years, lasting long enough to damage winter planting as well as the summer harvest. Russia imposed an export ban on grains. This was compounded by late rains in Canada, Nina disruptions in Argentina, and a series of acreage downgrades in the US. The world’s stocks-to-use ratio for corn is nearing a 30-year low of 12.8pc, according to Rabobank.
The deeper causes are well-known: an annual rise in global population by 73m; the “exhaustion” of the Green Revolution as the gains in crop yields fade, to cite the World Bank; diet shifts in Asia as the rising middle class switch to animal-protein diets, requiring 3-5 kilos of grain feed for every kilo of meat produced; the biofuel mandates that have diverted a third of the US corn crop into ethanol for cars.
Add the loss of farmland to Asia’s urban sprawl, and the depletion of the non-renewable acquivers for irrigation of North China’s plains, and the geopolitics of global food supply starts to look neuralgic.
Can the world head off mass famine? Yes, with leadership. The regions of the ex-Soviet Union farm 30m hectares less today than in the Khrushchev era, and yields are half western levels.
There are tapped hinterlands in Brazil, and in Africa where land titles and access to credit could unleash a great leap forward. The global reservoir of unforested cropland is 445m hectares, compared to 1.5 billion in production. But the low-lying fruit has already gone, and the vast investment needed will not come soon enough to avoid a menacing shift in the terms of trade between the land and the urban poor.
We are on a thinner margin of food security, as North Africa is discovering painfully, and China understands all too well. Perhaps it is a little too early to write off farm-rich Europe and America.

Governments scramble to fly citizens out of Egypt

By Maria Sheahan Maria Sheahan – Sun Jan 30, 4:14 pm ET
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Governments started arranging for planes on Sunday to bring home citizens stuck in Egypt, where violent protests of the rule of President Hosni Mubarak have given way in some parts of Cairo to looting.
The United States and Turkey offered to evacuate citizens wanting to leave and major airlines including Lufthansa and Air India said they would send additional planes to Cairo and Alexandria.
The Greek foreign ministry said at least two Greek military aircraft were on standby.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki dispatched his presidential plane to Egypt to pick up Iraqi citizens, and the transport ministry ordered free transportation for Iraqis living in Egypt on Iraqi Airways planes, a ministry spokesman said.
Some European companies started evacuating their staff, and witnesses reported scenes of chaos at Cairo Airport, as people, including Egyptians, tried to catch a decreasing number of operational flights.
U.S.-based Delta Air Lines Inc, for instance, said on Friday it was suspending its service into Cairo indefinitely.
U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs Janice Jacobs said on CNN television that U.S.-government sponsored flights will be leaving Cairo on Monday.
"We are in the process right now of arranging for some charter flights that will be going out of Cairo. Those will begin tomorrow and then they will be ongoing until we are able to get all Americans who are not able to get out via commercial airlines."
She advised Americans to limit movement in Egypt and urged families in the United States to help convey the information to those in Egypt where access to State Department website is limited.
The Japanese government was preparing to use chartered planes to fly out 600 Japanese national stranded in or around Cairo, Kyodo news agency reported.
Egypt's tourism industry, which provides about one in eight jobs in a country beset by high unemployment, took a hit in 1997 when gunmen killed 58 tourists and four Egyptians at an ancient temple in Luxor, and after the September 11, 2001, attacks.
However, decreases in tourist levels have previously been temporary, and the industry's trend over the last decade has been broadly upward.
Some countries advised their citizens to leave Egypt or avoid traveling to its major cities if possible, although Russian and German tourists at Red Sea resorts have made no move to cut short their holidays.
Britain recommended its citizens leave Cairo, Suez and Alexandria "where it is safe to do so." The U.S. State Department moved to reduce diplomatic staff in Egypt, authorizing the voluntary departure of diplomats and nonessential workers.
The Philippines foreign ministry readied a 25 million pesos ($567,000) standby emergency fund for the evacuation of about 6,600 Filipinos if necessary, while Thailand advised some 2,600 Thais in the country to stay put.
"They have been asked to stay indoors with food and water in case of an emergency," Thai ministry spokesman Thani Thongpakdi said, adding there was no need for an evacuation at this point.
VIOLENCE AT NIGHT
Oil company Royal Dutch Shell planned to evacuate about 60 families of its international staff from Egypt as a safety measure, a source close to the company told Reuters.
In the residential area of Cairo, two big buses were parked outside the offices of the Italian oil company ENI to evacuate families, witnesses said. One foreign employee of the company said his wife and three children would go but he would stay. There was no immediate comment from ENI.
"It's not an issue during the day, it's at night when we don't know what will happen," the employee said.
Near the buses was a four-wheel-drive vehicle with security men. Several foreign families were waiting to board the buses.
In Baku, an Azeri Foreign Ministry spokesman said an accountant at the Azeri Embassy in Egypt was killed in street clashes in Cairo late on Saturday on his way home from work.
The spokesman said the government was sending a plane to Cairo on Sunday to pick up the body and evacuate about 70 Azeris studying in Egypt.
Most of the estimated 40,000 Russians vacationing in Egypt have no plans to cut short their trips despite the protests, the acting head of the Russian Federal Tourism Agency, Alexander Radkov, told Interfax news agency on Saturday.
"On the whole, the situation in Egyptian resorts remains calm ... People do not want to interrupt their holiday," he said.
Tour operator TUI Deutschland said cancellations and rebookings of trips to the Red Sea coast had so far not increased, and Thomas Cook flew a fresh batch of tourists to the region from Germany on Sunday.
"Our guests are doing fine. And none of them have said they want to come home now," a Thomas Cook spokeswoman said.
But Belgian travel agency Jetair, owned by TUI Travel, said on its website it was working on an evacuation plan due to start on Monday for its customers who are in Egypt.
Belgian media said about 1,700 tourists were subject to the plan. The company was not immediately available for a comment.
($1=44.10 Philippine Peso)
(Additional reporting by international bureaus, Editing by Matthew Jones and Maureen Bavdek)