THE SKELETONS OF OBAMA
By Charles Johnson
Here’s a quick run-down of some of Barack Obama’s questionable and disturbing associations:
* Rabidly anti-Israel Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi.
The Obamas were regular dinner guests at Khalidi’s Hyde Park home for
* Terrorist sympathizer Ali Abunimah, who runs the viciously anti-Israel web site Electronic Intifada.
* Unrepentant Weather Underground terrorists William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn.
* Reverend Jeremiah Wright. What more needs to be said?
* Anti-Israel foreign policy adviser Samantha Power — fired after calling Hillary Clinton a “monster.”
* Anti-Israel foreign policy adviser Robert Malley — fired when it was revealed he has been holding talks with Hamas.
* Hatem El-Hady, former official of the Hamas-linked charity
Kindhearts, closed by the Justice Department. El-Hady’s web page
suddenly vanished from the Obama campaign site with no explanation,
after being exposed by LGF and others.
* Tony Rezko — a Chicago fixer currently in a whole lot of legal trouble.
There are more, I know; this is just off the top of my head.
I have never witnessed a presidential election in which a major candidate had this many skeletons in his closet.
HOW BADLY DID OBAMA LOSE WEST VIRGINIA?
By Charles Johnson
Barack Obama lost in every single category in West Virginia: Election Center 2008: Primary Exit Polls - Elections & Politics news from CNN.com.
REV. WRIGHT MAGAZINE FEATURED OBAMA ON COVER WITH FARRAKHAN
By Charles Johnson
To this day, Barack Obama continues to insist he was shocked and
surprised to discover that Reverend Jeremiah Wright had bizarre racist
Now Tom Blumer has discovered images of Wright’s radical newsmagazine Trumpet—and look who was featured on the cover of that magazine at least three times: BizzyBlog - Attention Stanley Kurtz, Re Obama, Wright, Trumpet: I’ve Got You Covered.
Here’s one of the images, featuring pictures of Barack Obama, Rev. Wright — and Louis Farrakhan. Isn’t that cozy?
And if you think Barack Obama didn’t know he was featured on this cover, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you.
For more about the deranged, hateful content of Trumpet, see: Jeremiah Wright’s ‘Trumpet’.
UPDATE at 5/13/08 5:42:49 pm:
LGF readers have identified several of the other people on this cover:
Adam Clayton Powell — 1st row, 1st from left
Dick Gregory — 1st row, 2nd from left
Shirley Chisholm — 1st row, 4th from left
O. J. Simpson attorney Johnny Cochran — 1st row, 5th from left
Rosa Parks — 1st row, 6th from left
Rapper “Common” — 2nd row, 1st from left
Is that Robert Mugabe? 2nd row, 2nd from left
Luther Vandross — 4th row, 1st from left
Ozzie Davis — 4th row, 2nd from left
Lou Rawls — 4th row, 3rd from left
Nation of Islam founder Elijah Muhammad — 4th row, 5th from left
Notice who’s missing? Martin Luther King, Jr. Tuesday, May 13, 2008
By Glenn McCoy
TIME WINS THE BASRA NARRATIVE SWEEPSTAKES
By Ed Morrissey
After Moqtada al-Sadr’s capitulation of Sadr City this weekend, I predicted that the mainstream media would follow the Basra Narrative and declare Sadr the winner after his surrender. Little did I know that Time Magazine
would prove me right within hours of the post. Laughingly headlined
“Al-Sadr Wins Another Round”, Mark Kukis explains how Sadr won by
giving up his last power base in Iraq:
The fact that a leading figure in al-Sadr’s ranks
announced the deal and pointedly rejected the Iraqi government’s key
demand to disarm suggests that the cleric is still controlling the
agenda tactically and politically despite the most serious challenge
his power the Iraqi government could muster. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri
al-Maliki set out to break the back of the Mahdi Army in March, when he
launched an offensive against areas the militia controls in the
southern city of Basra. The Mahdi Army fought Iraqi forces to a
standstill there while unleashing a daily hail of rockets and mortars
on the Green Zone that left al-Maliki’s government effectively the ones
under siege. And when U.S. and Iraqi troops tried to press into Sadr
City to chase the militia’s mortar men and rocketeers, they barely
managed to establish a foothold on the southern edge of the
neighborhood before the situation stalemated.
How long this new cease-fire will last is uncertain. Al-Sadr
declared a cease-fire unilaterally last year only to see al-Maliki
ignore it with the initial strike in Basra. But one thing is clear: the
latest pause in the running fight between al-Sadr and the U.S.-backed
Iraqi government offers no visible solutions to the problems at the
root of the conflict. Al-Maliki wants to disband the Mahdi Army, or at
least de-fang it, before provincial elections in the fall. The bloody
nose the Mahdi Army gave al-Maliki in the latest crisis shows how
unlikely that is. Above all, al-Sadr still wants the Americans to go.
But the inability of Iraqi forces to operate independently during the
recent fighting shows how unlikely that is - unless a new White House
decides to reduce military support for an Iraqi government still unable
to face down its toughest foe.
Another round? Kukis still thinks that Sadr prevailed in Basra by not losing in the first 48 hours. Even the New York Times
acknowledged Maliki’s victory in Basra, noting that the residents now
enjoy a relatively normal and liberated life in the city on which Sadr
imposed a Taliban-like code. The Mahdis have disappeared from the
south, and Maliki’s forces control Basra after several years of Sadr’s
grip on the area. How exactly did Sadr win that round?
And in Sadr City, Kukis gives us the same Basra Narrative provided
by the entirety of the American media at the end of March. Sadr’s
forces announced the cease-fire, so they must be winning. Not exactly;
that same agreement ceded control of Sadr City to government forces,
and it specifically acknowledged that Maliki had the right to continue
offensive operations against anyone refusing to surrender medium or
heavy arms. In fact, just as in Basra after the agreement there, Maliki
continues to pursue Mahdi elements militarily.
This time, most of the American media has wisely refrained from
cheering on Sadr and reporting the operation as a massive defeat while
Maliki beats Sadr. Kukis and Time should have done the same. Tuesday, May 13, 2008
THE PROTOCOLS OF THE DAILY KOS
By Charles Johnson
How low can Daily Kos go? Perhaps the most sickening, hate-filled antisemitic diary ever at Daily Kos: Daily Kos: Eulogy before the Inevitability of Self-Destruction: The Decline and Death of Israel.
Every obsessive antisemitic canard known to man is represented in
this piece; the USS Liberty, “Zionist cancer,” “Zionist tentacles,”
“the Mossad killed JFK,” blood libels, you name it. They’re all here.
It’s disgusting beyond belief that they would allow something like
this at their web site during Israel’s 60th anniversary, but that’s how
far the left wing has degenerated. Tuesday, May 13, 2008
(Hat tip: Right Wing News.)
OBAMA LAYS DOWN THE LAW
By Paul Mirengoff
Barack Obama and his legion of supporters in the MSM may
not like the fact that Hamas supports his candidacy, or that John
McCain and his supporters mention this fact. But it's not difficult to
understand why Hamas favors Obama. Consider this statement by Obama regarding Lebanon:
This effort to undermine Lebanon’s elected government needs
to stop, and all those who have influence with Hezbollah must press
them to stand down immediately. . . It’s time to engage in diplomatic
efforts to help build a new Lebanese consensus that focuses on
electoral reform, an end to the current corrupt patronage system, and
the development of the economy that provides for a fair distribution of
services, opportunities and employment.
The naivety of this statement is staggering. As Noah Pollak
asks: "Does Obama understand that the people who 'have influence with
Hezbollah' happen to be the same people on whose behalf Hezbollah is
rampaging through Lebanon?" And does he really believe that Hezbollah
and its sponsors can be pacified or neutralized by electoral reform, an
end to corrupt patronage, and "fair" distribution of services?
Obama may well fail to comprehend the first point and believe the
second, just as naive leftists of an earlier generation thought that Ho
Chi Minh was, at root, an agrarian reformer. In any case, Pollak is
correct that "Obama is rhetorically cornered; since his only
prescription for the Middle East is diplomatic engagement, every
disease gets re-diagnosed as something curable through talking."
THE REPUBLICAN LOSING STREAK CONTINUES
By Paul Mirengoff
The Democrats appear to have picked up another House seat
in a formerly "safe" Republican district tonight. The latest win for
the Dems comes in Mississippi where Travis Childers, a county chancery
to have edged out Greg Davis, a mayor. President Bush carried this
district twice with about 60 percent of the vote each time. But
Childers ran as a strong social conservative.
As in all of these recent Republican defeats, analysts will be able
to point to factors unique to the particular race. But my takeaway is
that the Republican brand is in such bad shape that the Dems can win
virtually anywhere if they nominate a candidate whose position on key
issues is, or can be made to seem, close to that of the Republican.
Fortunately, the Democrats will not nominate such a candidate for
president. And the Republican nominee, whether we feel comfortable
about it or not, isn't necessarily seen as intimately associated with
the Republican brand. Even so, I think that Republican nominee is
CONSISTENCY IS NOT REQUIRED
By John Hinderaker
It's hard to say how far Republicans can fall before they hit bottom. Recently, Rasmussen Reports
has found that on eight of ten major issues, voters trust Democrats
more than Republicans. That's very bad. Today, though, Rasmussen
announced that the Dems have achieved a decafecta: they are preferred
by voters on all ten major issue clusters.
The most important issue, currently, is the economy, where the Dems
enjoy a 14-point margin. What's odd about this is that the Democrats'
actual policies are not preferred by many of these same respondents.
Rasmussen also reports
that 60% of likely voters say that tax increases will hurt the economy.
Interestingly, this sentiment is strongest among young voters, 70% of
whom think tax increases will damage the economy. Presumably a large
majority of voters realize that the Democrats are yearning to raise
taxes, so it is hard to reconcile this finding with respondents'
expressed preference for Democrats on this issue.
While I can't support the proposition with poll data, I'm pretty
sure the same principle would hold with regard to national security and
terrorism, where the Democrats now hold an advantage. I'm confident
that most voters, if you laid out the parties' approaches on this issue
and asked which they prefer, would choose Republican policies, i.e.,
security through strength rather than security through conversation.
So, what is going on here? I think it's noteworthy that Rasmussen
finds that the Dems' generic advantage on the issues does not carry
over to the Presidential race:
While voters tend to prefer Democrats over Republicans on a
generic basis, John McCain consistently outperforms the GOP brand. In
fact, polling shows that he is trusted more than either Barack Obama or
Hillary Clinton on key issues such as the economy and national security.
It isn't news that McCain outpolls the Republican brand, but why?
The reasons are complex, but I would offer this partial explanation: in
the American media, which is to say American public life, Republicans
are a despised group, much like used car salesmen, Congressmen,
lawyers, or, in former times, certain ethnic and religious minorities.
Anyone who watches NBC, CBS, ABC, MTV, CNN, MSNBC, or almost any other
television outlet, or who reads the New York Times, Washington Post,
Los Angeles Times, or virtually any other daily newspaper, or who reads
Time or Newsweek, is exposed to a steady diet of
Republican-caricaturing and Republican-bashing. We have had partisan
media in this country before, but I don't believe we have ever
experienced such a unanimously one-party media at any time in our
Americans are certainly influenced by this barrage, but there is a
silver lining of sorts. People who subscribe to stereotypes have long
been willing to make exceptions based on their own observation and
experience. Thus: most Congressmen are crooks, but mine is a good guy;
most lawyers are shysters, but mine is honest; most [fill in the blank]
are no good, but my friend/nanny/gardener/doctor/employee is a good
I think this phenomenon partly explains why McCain outruns the
party's brand, and why just about any specific Republican whom the
public gets to know will do so--albeit, most likely, to a lesser degree
than McCain. That's the good news. The bad news is that all
Republicans, from the Presidential nominee on down, are running against
a headwind that is approaching hurricane force.
Which brings us back to the weird reality that a great many
Americans who know that raising taxes is a bad idea are poised to vote
for the party that intends to do just that. The title of this post is
not ironic; consistency is not required of voters, and it appears that
lots of Americans are willing to turn the reins of power over to the
Democrats even though they know that the Democrats' ideas and policies
are bad. Tuesday, May 13, 2008
MY PARTY IS BEHIND ME
By Bob Gorrell
COME AND SEE THE BIGOTRY INHERENT IN THE (DEMOCRATIC) SYSTEM!
By Ed Morrissey
Victimology continues in the identity-politics meltdown of the Democratic primaries. The Washington Post
profiles racist incidents that young campaigners for Barack Obama have
experienced, but fails to note that they occur within the context of a Democratic contest. Meanwhile, women continue to push for Hillary Clinton as a means of breaking through the ultimate glass ceiling, putting gender ahead of qualifications on the priority list.
Doesn’t this count as “distractions”?
For all the hope and excitement Obama’s candidacy is
generating, some of his field workers, phone-bank volunteers and
campaign surrogates are encountering a raw racism and hostility that
have gone largely unnoticed — and unreported — this election season.
Doors have been slammed in their faces. They’ve been called racially
derogatory names (including the white volunteers). And they’ve endured
malicious rants and ugly stereotyping from people who can’t fathom that
the senator from Illinois could become the first African American
Victoria Switzer, a retired social studies teacher, was on
phone-bank duty one night during the Pennsylvania primary campaign. One
night was all she could take: “It wasn’t pretty.” She made 60 calls to
prospective voters in Susquehanna County,
her home county, which is 98 percent white. The responses were
dispiriting. One caller, Switzer remembers, said he couldn’t possibly
vote for Obama and concluded: “Hang that darky from a tree!”
Documentary filmmaker Rory Kennedy, the daughter of the late Robert F. Kennedy,
said she, too, came across “a lot of racism” when campaigning for Obama
in Pennsylvania. One Pittsburgh union organizer told her he would not
vote for Obama because he is black, and a white voter, she said,
offered this frank reason for not backing Obama: “White people look out
for white people, and black people look out for black people.”
Obama campaign officials say such incidents are isolated, that the
experience of most volunteers and staffers has been overwhelmingly
Who were these volunteers contacting? Fellow Democrats.
They wanted to mobilize the registered Democrats to get them to vote in
the closed primary, and received very ugly responses for their trouble.
Some of what the Post reports has nothing to do with racism, however, but it also involves violence:
The bigotry has gone beyond words. In Vincennes, the
Obama campaign office was vandalized at 2 a.m. on the eve of the
primary, according to police. A large plate-glass window was smashed,
an American flag stolen. Other windows were spray-painted with
references to Obama’s controversial former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and other political messages: “Hamas votes BHO” and “We don’t cling to guns or religion. Goddamn Wright.”
Who commits all of these acts of racism? When the WaPo article
identifies their politics, they turn out to be supporters of … Hillary
Clinton. Meanwhile, Politico wonders whether the “sisterhood” can save
Just a day after the debilitating results in the North
Carolina and Indiana primaries, the New York senator sought help at a
fundraiser dubbed by her campaign “Generations of Women for Hillary.”
And, as has been the pattern, the 1,500 mostly women who attended
came through, not just meeting the goal of generating $500,000 for her
campaign but doubling it.
Even the sight of a couple of loud protesters couldn’t erase the
obvious relief and excitement of the candidate, who sponsored the event
along with her daughter and mother. As the last heckler was escorted
out of Washington’s Omni Shoreham Hotel, Clinton quipped that she hoped
“they paid” before they were booted.
Unfortunately for Hillary, Obama has raised more money from more
women than she has, at least through the first quarter of 2008. The
gender card has turned into a busted flush, but Hillary has yet to stop
playing it, and for at least some of her supporters, it will continue
to drive energy away from Obama.
As McQ notes, the media should remember this when it comes to accusations of racism and bigotry later in the general election. Tuesday, May 13, 2008
REST IN PEACE, IRENA SENDLER
By Charles Johnson
One of the true heroines of our time, a woman who saved thousands of Jewish children from the Nazi Holocaust, Irena Sendler has died at the age of 98.
What she witnessed haunted her to the end of her life. Rest in peace, Irena.
The petite woman with the black bonnet sat on a reclining chair in a central Warsaw nursing home.
The 94-year-old could not get the image of the skeletally thin
children lying in the street of the Warsaw Ghetto, meekly whispering
“bread,” out of her mind.
It was 2004, nearly six decades after World War II, but the horrors of the Holocaust were still alive for Irena Sendler.
Sendler, who, with a group of friends, is credited with sneaking
2,500 Jewish children out of the ghetto, died on Monday in a Polish
hospital from pneumonia. She was 98.
Sendler was one of the first to be awarded Yad Vashem’s highest
honor - she was declared a Righteous Gentile in 1965 for risking her
life to save Jews during the Shoah - but it was only in her golden
years that she received recognition from the Polish government, which,
together with Holocaust survivor groups, nominated her for the Nobel
Prize two years ago, after decades in which Communist governments
frowned on her heroic actions.
Sendler’s story - and her connections with the Jewish community -
began on the outskirts of Warsaw, where as a young girl she was taught
at home that people are either good or bad, and should not be judged
based on race, religion or nationality, she recounted in the 2004
interview with The Jerusalem Post.
“Whatever I did had its roots in my family home,” Sendler said, as she told her story through an interpreter.
When Germany invaded Poland in the fall of 1939, Sendler was just shy of her 30th birthday.
“The whole of Poland was drowning in blood, but the Jewish nation
was suffering the most, with the Jewish children the most vulnerable,”
Sendler and a group of friends in the Warsaw municipality’s social
welfare department started producing false documents to provide Jews in
the ghetto with monetary assistance that the Germans had cut off.
After 1940 the ghetto was closed off to non-Jews, and Sendler and her friends could not get in to distribute the funds.
She soon learned that one sanitation company was still allowed into
the ghetto. Sendler got the Polish director of the service to employ
her and 10 friends so they could continue helping Jews.
For the next two years, dressed as nurses, Sendler and her friends
carried food, money, and medicine hidden in their dresses to ghetto
residents. As conditions deteriorated, and the liquidation of ghetto
began, Sendler came to the realization that the only chance for the
children to survive was to escape.
Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project
THE LATEST "INTERFAITH" LEADER WITH TERROR TIES
May 12, 2008
In anticipation of the deportation proceedings of Imam Mohammad Qatanani of the Islamic Center of Passaic in New Jersey, New York Times trumpeted "Revered New Jersey Imam, Facing Deportation, Has Interfaith Support." And indeed, the Imam has had various "interfaith" leaders testify on his behalf, as reported by Newsday:
Several Catholic priests and a Jewish rabbi became emotional on the
stand when describing how much Qatanani had done for interfaith
Qatanani is accused of having lied on his immigration documents both
about his arrest and conviction in Israel (which he now claims was
merely a "detention") and his confession that he was a member of Hamas
(which he now claims was procured under torture). Qatanani also claims
he only recently became aware of his conviction by Israeli authorities.
But Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Heather Philpott has testified:
…during the 2005 meeting Qatanani admitted he had been arrested and
convicted by Israeli authorities, and that he had been advised by an
attorney at the time to plead guilty to being a member of Hamas and
sign an affidavit to that effect.
News reports have alternately described Qatanani as "revered" (see New York Times above), "influential," and "respected."
Likewise, all media reports have outlined both the charges against
Qatanani and his excuses, bolstered by a coterie of quotes from
supporters about how revered, influential and respected Qatanani is.
What those stories do not detail is Qatanani's history of attending
radical conferences in the United States, nor his frequent use of
incendiary rhetoric in speeches and sermons.
Qatanani was a speaker at an Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP)
conference in Chicago on November 27, 1999, introduced as the new imam
of the Patterson Islamic Center in New Jersey. IAP conferences are not good venues to participate or attend if one is trying to disprove an association with Hamas.
IAP is no longer an active organization, but for years it was a
central player in Hamas' U.S. support network. Mousa Abu Marzook,
currently the Deputy Political Bureau Chief for Hamas in Damascus, gave
IAP $490,000 and is a former IAP board member. In a 2001 memo, the U.S.
Immigration and Naturalization Service identified IAP as "part of
Hamas' propaganda apparatus." In the summer of 2007, the Dallas trial
charging the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF) with
providing material support for Hamas produced extensive evidence that
IAP played a central role in the Muslim Brotherhood's Palestine
Committee, shorthand for Hamas' U.S.-based infrastructure. This earned
IAP the distinction of being named an unindicted coconspirator in the
In a September 2004 Herald News article titled, "HAMAS:
Charitable cause or terror organization? It depends on whom you ask,"
Qatanani came out in favor of supporting the families of suicide
Mohammad Qatanani, spiritual leader of the Islamic Center of Passaic
County, posed a hypothetical question: What if the charity did support
the children of suicide bombers? What would be wrong with that, he
"There is a big issue between supporting them before, not after," suicide attacks, he said.
He compared the support of orphans of suicide bombers to supporting
the children of terrorists like Timothy McVeigh for instance, or the
children of the man who killed former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak
The children are innocent, even if their parents might not be, he said.
In the indictment, however, the government makes the case that by
supporting dead terrorists' families, Holy Land "effectively rewarded
past, and encouraged future, suicide bombings and terrorist activities
on behalf of Hamas."
Unsurprisingly, during the HLF trial, Qatanani publicly prayed for the Hamas-linked defendants, stating:
Oh Allah assist our brothers and sisters in Filastin, and Iraq and
Chechnya. O Allah remove occupation and oppression and oh Allah improve
the matters of our community, subhanahu wa ta'ala to assist our
brothers and sisters in the Holy Land Foundation, ask oh Allah
subhanahu wa ta'ala to assist them and to remove the difficulty that
they have been inflicted with all of the brothers and sisters in this
country, oh Allah to prove them non-guilty.
A month earlier in another sermon, this respected influential leader condemned Christians to eternal hellfire, castigating them as hypocrites:
The people who commit such atrocity [hypocrisy] will be the swiftest
in punishment on the day of judgment as Abdullah … narrated, the worst
punishment that will people be taken are three people – the hypocrites
and those who have disbelieved, from the followers of Jesus peace and
blessing be upon him have disbelieved after the table came down, and
the people of Pharaoh will be swiftly punished as well and they'll be
amongst the hypocrites. And Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala says about the
hypocrites, the hypocrites are in the lower pits of hellfire.
These incendiary sermons aren't even well hidden from the public.
Rather, they're available on the Islamic Center of Passaic County's website. In English.
And yet, less than a year later, Newsday reported that
"several Catholic priests," or, as Qatanani referred to them,
"followers of Jesus," became emotional on the stand - testifying in
Qatanani's defense. Perhaps Qatanani's interfaith character witnesses
were unaware that they had been damned to hell by none other than the
man they came to defend.
Perhaps Qatanani's interfaith defenders are also unaware of his characterization of "Greater Syria"
– including all of Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine (including Israel) as
"Muslim land," and that fighting to conquer these lands is a divine
You see then the blessed prophet brothers and sisters chooses that
the land of Greater Syria, and that includes Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan
and Syria – it is the Greater of Syria, these Assyria and Jordan was
done by the occupation. You see that if you truly believe in these
borders that means you believe in what the occupationer did. You see
Syria, Palestine it's all the Greater Syria, Bilad al-Sham, it is the
Greater Syria. You know some people might not like this, but this is
the truth – it's all the Muslim land, this is Greater Syria, and Allah
had called it in five places in the Quran as a blessed place. And it
was narrated in a hadith that they are the most beloved lands to Allah.
You see listen to the blessed prophet, says that he gives the
companions good tidings that the greater Syria will be actually
conquered. You see if you conquer the Holy Land or Al Aqsa Masjid that
you are in struggle till the hereafter.
As both Christians and Jews claim the rights in much of Lebanon and
Palestine, Qatanani's views are hardly compatible with constructive
interfaith dialogue, never mind his divine prescription that Muslims
should conquer those territories. Qatanani is only the latest
"interfaith" Muslim leader to face deportation charges for lying on his
immigration documents, as well as having connections to a Palestinian
terrorist group. Fawaz Damra,
formerly of the Islamic Society of Cleveland, was denaturalized and
deported for failing to disclose his ties to the Palestinian Islamic
Jihad (PIJ) and related U.S.-based entities on his immigration forms.
After Damra was indicted, "interfaith" leaders railed to support him, until videos emerged in which he referred to Jews as "monkeys and pigs" and was raising money for the PIJ.
After this information was revealed, Damra apologized and claimed that
he had reformed and that his views had changed. He was eventually
convicted and deported to the West Bank. His partner in crime,
literally, Sami Al-Arian, who Damra once introduced at his mosque as a PIJ leader, is currently in the custody of the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement,
possibly facing an indictment on criminal contempt charges for refusing
to testify in front of a grand jury investigating the terrorist ties of
a Northern Virginia think tank, the International Institute of Islamic
Qatanani's three day hearing ended Monday afternoon, but has been
extended. A decision on his fate is expected in the near future. But as
both Damra and Qatanani (and Al-Arian) have demonstrated, "interfaith"
leaders with ties to Palestinian terrorist groups cannot be trusted.
 IAP 3rd Annual Conference, Chicago, November 25-27 1999.
 Mohammad Qatanani, Sermon, "The role of reading in the revival of ummah," July 27, 2007.
 Mohammad Qatanani, Sermon, "A Warning Against Hypocrisy," June 8, 2007.
 Mohammad Qatanani, Sermon, ""In the Shadow of Al-Isra Wa Al Miraj," August 3, 2007.
of the disposition of Iraqi and US forces in and around Sadr City and
the progress on the barrier. The red portion has yet to be completed.
Map courtesy of Multinational Forces Iraq.
Mahdi Army fighters continue to attack US and Iraqi units as they
work to complete the barrier along Qods Street in Sadr City. These
attacks are occurring despite the truce agreed upon by the Sadrist
political block and the Iraqi government. Iraqi and US forces said 10
Mahdi Army fighters during clashes in Sadr City and three more Mahdi
fighters were killed elsewhere in Baghdad. Iraqi troops have also begun
reinforcing the Shula neighborhood in Baghdad.
The Iraqi military said it killed eight “gunmen” inside Sadr City
over the past 24 hours. The US military said it killed two Mahdi Army
fighters from the night of May 12 to the morning of May 13 during five
separate engagements. Three more Mahdi Army fighters were killed in the Mahdi-influenced neighborhood in New Baghdad and in northwestern Baghdad as they planted roadside bombs.
The attacks occurred during construction on the barrier along Qods
Street, the main thoroughfare that divides the southern third of Sadr
City from the northern neighborhoods. The US military used air weapons
teams armed with Hellfire missiles, Abrams tanks, Bradley fighting
vehicles, and infantry to beat back the attacks.
The US military does not believe the radical elements of the Mahdi
Army will obey Sadr’s call for a ceasefire. “They are obviously not
listening to any agreement, and hence why we call them Special Groups
and rogue elements, “ said Lieutenant Colonel Steven Stover, the chief
Public Affairs Officer for Multinational Division Baghdad, in an email to The Long War Journal.
While the Sadrists claim that one of the terms of the cease-fire
agreement is that US forces will not operate in Sadr City, the
agreement actually states the Iraqi military would try to limit a US
presence in the area. Stover is unable to discuss future operations,
but his statements indicate the US military is not planning to leave
“We are establishing a safe neighborhood for south Sadr City
residents,” Stover said. “We built the wall to establish security for
south Sadr City residents (and us) and established check points to
degrade the enemies' ability to maneuver, reinforce and resupply. As
part of COIN [counterinsurgency], we're going to try and make life real
good for the south Sadr City residents as we did in other areas of
A total of 593 Mahdi Army fighters have been confirmed killed in and
around Sadr City since March 25, according to numbers compiled by The
Long War Journal. More than one-quarter of the Mahdi Army fighters
killed have been killed in US airstrikes.
As clashes continue in Sadr City, the Iraqi military moved additional forces into the Shula neighborhood
in western Baghdad Sadr City. “Baghdad operations command have started
replacing the troops stationed in Shula, and reinforcing them with
further units,” said Brigadier General Qassem Atta, the spokesman for
the Baghdad security operation. The Sadrist claim the Army arrested 30
of its members in a raid on a Sadirst office, but Atta denied this.
“When the troops reached the electricity power station close to al
Sadr’ office, they were exposed to fire by gunmen, forcing the troops
to engage and chase the shooters.”
US and Iraqi troops have conducted numerous raids against the Mahdi
Army and Special Groups leaders and operatives in the Shula
neighborhood. On May 6, Iraqi troops arrested 35 hospital workers in Shula for aiding the Mahdi Army.
The hospitals in Sadr City are known to be infiltrated with Mahdi
Army and Sadrist bloc members who continue to use the hospitals for
criminal activities. The Mahdi Army used hospitals as staging areas for
sectarian attacks and weapons storage depots. On May 3, US forces knocked out a Special Groups command and control center
situated next to a Sadr City hospital. The Sadrist bloc ran the Health
Ministry prior to withdrawing from the government in 2007.
For more on the recent fighting in Sadr City and the cease-fire, see Sadrist bloc buckles, agrees to let Iraqi Army in Sadr City.
announcing the death of al Qaeda operatives Abu Suleiman al Otaibi and
Abu Dejana al Qahtani, as published at the al Qaeda-linked Al Ekhlass
forum. Otaibi is pictured in the animation.
New information has emerged on the two al Qaeda operatives who were recently killed in Afghanistan's Paktia province. The NEFA Foundation has published a translation of the martyr's notice for Abu Suleiman al Otaibi and Abu Dejana al Qahtani,
while a US intelligence official has provided background information on
Otaibi's involvement with al Qaeda in Iraq's Islamic State of Iraq.
Both Otaibi and Dejana are Saudi nationals, while Dejana is the brother
of one of the four al Qaeda operatives who escaped from Bagram prison
Abu Suleiman al Otaibi
Abu Suleiman al Otaibi is a Saudi national who served as a senior
leader in al Qaeda's Islamic State of Iraq prior to meeting his end in
Afghanistan, according to a senior US military intelligence official
who spoke to The Long War Journal on the condition he remains
anonymous. The statement issued by al Qaeda intimates Otaibi is Saudi
as well. "We offer our condolences to their families, to the mujahideen
brothers, to all of our brothers in general, and especially to the
brothers of Abu Sulaiman in Iraq and in the Arabian Peninsula,"
according to the translation from the NEFA Foundation.
Otaibi "came from Iraq and joined his brothers here [in Afghanistan]
approximately six months ago, following migration and jihad and
knowledge and missionary work and scholarship," al Qaeda's death notice
stated. He was described in the press reports former leader of the
legal system of al Qaeda in Iraq's political front, the Islamic State
But the Islamic State of Iraq declared upon its formation that Abu
Uthman al Tamimi was the minister of its sharia, or Islamic law,
council. There is no contradiction in Tamimi and Otaibi holding the
same position, the intelligence official stated.
Tamimi is a "real person," the military intelligence official noted,
but he is merely the Iraqi face for the Islamic State of Iraq's sharia
courts. Otaibi served as Tamimi's minder to ensure he performed his
duties to al Qaeda's satisfaction. Otaibi was "equivalent to the
military advisors that the Soviets used to embed with local communist
movements to bring them further in line with the Party," the military
intelligence official stated.
This arrangement is prevalent in the Islamic State of Iraq's senior
leadership. The Islamic State of Iraq officially lists Abu Omar al
Baghdadi as its emir, or leader, but Multinational Forces Iraq learned
that Baghdadi is essentially a creation of Abu Ayyub al Masri, al Qaeda
in Iraq's leader. Al Masri created the Islamic State of Iraq to put an
Iraqi face on al Qaeda's efforts.
Abu Dejana al Qahtani
Like Otaibi, Abu Dejana al Qahtani is a Saudi national. The al Qaeda death notice also notes that Abu Dejana is the brother of Abu Nasir al Qahtani,
one of four al Qaeda operatives who escaped from Bagram prison during
the summer of 2005. Abu Nasir escaped along with senior al Qaeda
leaders Abu Yahya al Libi and Omar Farouq.
Farouq was reassigned to Iraq after his escape to facilitate the
flow of money, weapons, and fighters for al Qaeda, some of it funneled
from Iran. British special forces killed Omar Farouq in Basrah, Iraq
in September 2006. Al Libi is an al Qaeda spokesman and a leader of the
Libyan Islamic Fighting Group. He is currently operating from the
tribal areas of northern Pakistan.
After his escape from Bagram, Abu Nasir fled to North Waziristan to continue attacks against NATO and Afghan
forces inside Afghanistan. Abu Nasir joined forces with al Qaeda
operative Abu Wafa, who operated from the North Waziristan tribal
agency in Pakistan. They were active in the Afghan provinces of Khost,
Paktia, and Paktika.
Abu Nasir released propaganda and training videos for terrorists operating in both Afghanistan and Iraq. He was captured in Khost province in November 2006. Tuesday, May 13, 2008