Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Egypt's state constitutes itself

Written by Nathan J. Brown
Wednesday, 21 November 2012
Foreign Policy

The bargaining among Egypt's political forces over the content of the country's constitution has been noisy, public, stormy, and dramatic. Indeed, over the past week, that tussle has brought the entire constitution drafting effort into crisis.
It is still not clear whether that bargaining can still lead to a consensual document or whether the Constituent Assembly will collapse or produce a star-crossed constitution.
But there has been another bargaining process that has drawn far less attention and commentary, even though much of it has been carried out in clear public view. Even those parts of this second process that have taken place behind closed doors still have left unmistakable footprints in the various drafts. And while not devoid of drama, the slightly quieter process seems more likely to produce successful outcomes. This is the bargaining among various structures of the Egyptian state.
The reason this second process -- every bit as important as the first -- has attracted less attention is because it cuts completely against the grain of most of our images of constitution writing. Few observers know to look for it. Constitutions are supposed to constitute political authority. They are written by the nation -- or at least by its representatives -- assembled; they are presented to the entire people for ratification. But in Egypt, political authorities are helping draft the constitution from which they will draw their own future authority.
Of course, in the past, the reality in the Arab world has generally been that regimes have carefully written documents to serve their own purposes, mimicking only the forms of popular participation. In Egypt today, however, it is not the regime but significant and powerful state bodies -- often enjoying much more autonomy than they did under the old regime and partially freed of presidential domination -- that are stepping forward to instruct Egypt's drafters on what to say. Some such bodies (such as al-Azhar) have formal representatives in the Constituent Assembly, but others make their voices heard by directly negotiating with assembly leaders, airing their opinions in the press, issuing statements, and even occasionally suggesting that they might resort to strikes or demonstrations.
So the Egyptian Ministry of Defense has objected to a constitutional provision barring military trials of civilians. It remarkably described a draft clause as "unacceptable." The State Cases Authority -- a body that defends state agencies in litigation -- has noisily insisted on its designation as a judicial body. Senior military officers have resisted civilian oversight of the military budget; al-Azhar has informed the assembly that it wishes to have its independence guaranteed but does not wish to have its teachings and interpretations given more than moral force. The Supreme Constitutional Court has insisted that constitutional provisions not contradict the current law that makes the court a self-perpetuating body. Other judicial bodies have pressed their own demands. The Judges Club has threatened a strike unless it gets the clauses it wants.
It is as if the United States decided to write a new constitution and allowed the Federal Reserve Board, the FBI, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Government Printing Office, and the Federal Judicial Center all to draft provisions affecting their work.
What do these various state bodies want? They seek the first two thirds of what other Egyptians wanted when they demonstrated in the 2011 revolution for "Freedom, dignity, and social justice." The state actors want freedom or, more precisely, autonomy. They wish to know that they will be able to govern their own affairs, make their own judgments, appoint their own members, select their own leaders, and spend their budgets freed of the heavy hand of presidential control that weighed so much on them in the past. And they wish for autonomy from the parliament as well, mindful that the body will likely be a bit less pliable than the People's Assemblies that met under Mubarak and his predecessors.
The dignity that they seek is sometimes surprisingly important; it often takes the form of demanding a distinct constitutional article in an already busy and loquacious text. Sometimes the placement of a provision is important: military judges and members of the State Cases Authority wish to be mentioned in the chapter on the judiciary (with regular judges sometimes huffily insisting that such personnel are not their colleagues and belong elsewhere in the document). The Supreme Constitutional Court, by contrast, insists on maintaining the privilege it had in the 1971 constitution of having its own chapter, forcefully resisting inclusion in the judicial chapter.
The Constituent Assembly, named by an elected parliament and answering to the people (in the form of a referendum on its work), might be expected to dismiss such claims as chutzpahdik. But it does not, and that is not simply because the predominantly Islamist members do not know the word. The assembly in general, and the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) in particular, have found that reaching a bargain with such bodies is generally possible and the effects likely salutary.
Indeed, since Mohamed Morsi was elected in June, the president and the FJP have generally paid far more attention to their relations with important state actors than they have with the relatively feckless "civil" political forces who occupy a minority of seats in the Constituent Assembly. In August, Morsi found that he could carefully negotiate a relationship with senior generals; after overplaying his hand with some judicial actors he has generally backed off and opted for a similar approach.
The Brotherhood generally has no problem with these various bodies as institutions, though it is often very suspicious of leading individuals within their ranks (such as Prosecutor General Abd al-Magid Mahmud or Justice Tahaney al-Gabali of the Supreme Constitutional Court). Where full frontal confrontation does not work, therefore, time might be of assistance; the Brotherhood and the president likely hope that over the long term these institutions might gradually pass into more genial hands. Optimistic about how well politics has served them thus far, and sanguine about their electoral fortunes, Brotherhood leaders can easily see compromises with these state bodies as a small price to pay for a working constitution in which Islamists will play a leading role.
This is thus a cagey approach for the Brotherhood, but is it a good one for Egypt?
It may have some real short-term benefits, particularly given the untested nature of the coming constitutional order. In Egypt's emerging political system, the mechanisms of vertical accountability (popular oversight over officials through the electoral process) may provide only an Islamist echo, particularly if non-Islamists turn in another underwhelming performance in parliamentary balloting. Mechanisms of horizontal accountability -- in which various state bodies keep a check on each other -- might provide a good temporary stand-in to prevent presidential despotism.
But this is no long-term solution. It rests in part by awarding critical institutions more autonomy from external oversight than is appropriate in a democratic system. So the short-term problem may be too much autonomy for these bodies. Over the long-term, there may be the precise opposite problem: the autonomy of many bodies will rest on implementing legislation (for instance, the provisions for the Supreme Constitutional Court allow the current law to be maintained but do not prevent future changes in that law). A series of Islamist majorities might chip away at the freedom that state bodies now seem to think they may be achieving through the constitution.
So in the end, if things work badly, the result might look a bit more like the Mubarak regime than anyone now wants. Mubarak's authoritarianism was presidential and despotic to be sure, but it was not based on having the presidency micro-manage the affairs of various state bodies. Instead it was based on placing those bodies in reliable hands, coopting key members, and reining them in if they suddenly discovered ways to act too autonomously of presidential will.
If Egyptians are not careful they will slip back into that pattern. In the end, there is simply no substitute for healthy democratic competition.
Nathan J. Brown is a professor of political science and international affairs at George Washington University.

Muslim Egyptian Woman Cut Hair of Christian Schoolgirl in Subway

AINA) -- 13-year-old Coptic girl Maggie Milad Fazez filed a police complaint in Zaytoun, a suburb of Cairo, against a veiled woman who secretly cut her hair during their journey on the subway. The child said that as she entered the crowded train car she inadvertently pushed the veiled woman to go inside, which led to a verbal exchange between them. The veiled woman told Maggie, who has long hair, "You don't know what I will do to you."
When the schoolgirl left the train, she was shocked to find her hair cut off and lying on the collar of her jacket. The incident took place yesterday morning as Maggie was on her way to Zaytoun Preparatory school.

Her Father said that Maggie has abstained from taking food and is suffering psychologically because of this incident.

Dr. Naguib Gabriel, head of the Egyptian Union of Human Rights Organization said that this was the second time in one week that a schoolgirl has had her hair cut off. The first was a girl in first grade at Saray el Koba High School, he said.
Dr. Gabriel asked the Minister of Interior to speedily find this veiled women who is cutting the hair of students and bring her to trial, similar to the veiled school teacher in Luxor who is standing for trial for cutting off the hair of two of her students last month because they did not wear a Hijab.

By Mary Abdelmassih

Coptic Christian Girl, 14, Abducted By Muslim in Egypt

AINA) -- Although the abduction and forced Islamization of Coptic Christian minor girls in Egypt is quite common (AINA 8-11-2009), especially with the rise of Islamists in Egypt after the Muslims Brotherhood took over governing the country, the case of 14-year old Sarah has caused a stir.
Sarah Ishaq Abdelmalek, born on August 1, 1998 in the town of el-Dabaa, 130 kilometers from Mersa Matrouh, was on her way to school with her cousin Miriam on Sunday, September 30, when they stopped at a bookshop. Miriam want ahead of Sarah to school, leaving Sarah at the bookstore. No one has seen Sarah ever since.

After filing a missing person report with the police, her father received a call to tell him that he will never see his daughter again.

Anba Pachomius, acting Coptic Pope is Bishop of Marsa Matrouh, and Sarah is one of his congregation. Pachomius has said in many interviews that Sarah is only a child and has to be returned to her family without delay.

On October 18 President Morsi was on an official visit to Mersa Mahrouh and the Copts in the region. Bishop Anba Pachomius instructed Father Bigem, supervisor of the Matrouh churches, to deliver a petition to Morsi, informing him of Sarah's abduction and accusing Mahmoud Selim Abdel Gawad, who owns a bookshop next to the school, of abducting her. Abdel Gawad is the son of a Salafist leader in the area.

Father Bigem said that the girl's father is concerned because Abdel Gawad is a Salafist. "Security knows her whereabouts," said Father Bigem, "and they make promises to resolve the crisis, but it's just words."

Security officials in Matrouh sought the help of the Salafist Sheikh Borhamy from Alexandria, however, he told them that the Salafists in Matrouh are not from the same school he belongs to, and he was unable to help.

Human rights and other civil organizations, together with the National Council of Women, lobbied for Sarah to be reunited with her family without delay. The Council declared its rejection and condemnation of the issue of child marriage, especially as the law criminalizes the act and punishes the offender.

The Salafist Front issued a statement on October 28, warning human rights organizations, especially the National Council for Women, not to attempt to return Sarah to her family, as she has converted to Islam and married a Muslim man. They said "Attempts of the church and human rights organizations to put pressure on the Interior Ministry to return the girl is rejected in form and substance, confirming that the girl has full freedom to convert to Islam and have full freedom to marry as long as 'she has reached puberty and can withstand marriage with its consequences and responsibilities.' We will address in any way, attempts to force Sarah to do anything against her freedom."

This was rejected by the church. Bishop Pachomius, in his appearance on the program In The Light on the Coptic channel CTV, said that the church will not be silenced by the threatening statements from the Salafists.

"Does the law allow a girl of this age to marry?" said Bishop Pachomius. "Have you asked the opinion of the girl's family before marriage since she is minor? Did the girl receive session of advice and guidance?" These sessions were obligatory in cases of conversion since 1851, until they were stopped by Mobarak's minister of Interior in 2004. In these sessions a priest or a sheikh would interview a potential convert to make sure of the decision. Copts have been calling for the return of these sessions, while Islamists are refusing.

In another statement, the Salafist Front said that there is no truth to what the girl's family says about her age. To prove her right age the Coptic Association of Victims of Abduction and Enforced Disappearance (AVAED) published a copy Sarah's birth certificate, proving she was born on August 1, 1998. AVAED vowed to pursue the matter even if they take the case to international human rights organizations responsible for protecting children's rights.

Yesterday the Salafists issued a statement saying that if Sarah returns to her family, she will be "killed" by her father. This was denied by her father, who said "I want my child back in my arms, even if she became a Muslim."

Dr. Naguib Gabriel, head of the Egyptian Union of Human Rights Organization, delievered a memorandum to the Minister of Interior from Anba Pakhomius, stating that that the acting Patriarch is infuriated by the disappearance of the child who has to return to her family in order to achieve "justice, security and peace." The memo warned of the outbreak of sectarian strife if the matter remain unsolved.

Most Copts believe that Sarah has to return to her family, even if they have to go on strike. "If we let this matter go, none of our girls will ever be safe again," commented Coptic activist Mark Ebeid.

By Mary Abdelmassih

Muslims Attack Coptic Christians in Egypt After Mass

AINA) -- Yesterday Muslim Salafis assaulted Christians after Sunday mass, angry that Christians from neighboring villages who have no churches attend mass in the village of Tala, el Fashn, in the Beni Suef Governorate. The pastor of St Georges Church Father Cheroubim Chehab could not go out of church for hours after mass.
Eyewitnesses reported that as Christians left the church, they found a huge mob of mostly young Salafi Muslims waiting for them, armed with batons. The assault lead to 5 Copts being hospitalized after suffering broken limbs, and the torching of two cars which transported the congregation from the other villages.

The pastor of the church contacted the police, asking for help, however, they appeared hours later, only after Dr. Naguib Gabriel, head of the Egyptian Union of Human Rights Organization, complained to the ministry of interior against el Fashn police and told them that no forces appeared in the village, and gave the names of six of the perpetrators and asked whether the police in el Fashn are afraid to arrest them. "I want the whole world to know," he said, "that a priest and his congregation are presently held captives in their church, afraid of the Salafi Muslims surrounding the church."

Cheroubim said that he looked from the roof of the church and the mob, from Tala and neighboring villages, was huge. "80% had beards." He said that he stayed inside the church as he "wanted no friction with the Muslims nor with the angry Copts, who wanted me to take other steps."

Later in the afternoon high officials from the security and police departments in Beni Suef arrived to the village for a reconciliation meeting, and while they were preparing for the meeting, Muslims went into Coptic homes and attacked the inhabitants. Five were hospitalized.

The problem started between the two parties nearly three months ago during Ramadan, when Salafist youths stopped Copts from neighboring villages from attending mass. "We had a meeting with the Muslim elders," said Rev. Cheroubim, "who told us to wait until after Ramadan when the youth will leave, however, when we wanted a second meeting to solve the matter, we were told to wait until security is better. When security was better Copts from other villages complained that they have been prevented from praying for three months since Ramadan." He said that only ten men from outside the village came to attend mass, so a large mob of Salafis waited for them after mass. "Muslims from the village held back the village Copts, so that the Salafis were able to beat and terrorize those Copts from outside the village."

Village Muslims insist that the church is an association and not a church and is for serving the village Christians only, who make up nearly 8% of the inhabitants.

Rev. Cheroubim said that he has been serving in St. George's church for 5 years and all that time Copts have come from neighboring villages to pray. "It was only during the last 10 days of Ramadan that this started, with complaints about the way the Christian girls are dressed, then it is not a church but an association, then no Copts to come from outside the village, but the main reason is mainly, as one Salafi from the mob was shouting, is that they want to the church closed."

High officials from Security department arranged for a reconciliation meetings in late afternoon with a group of Muslims and Christians, in which it was agreed that if the is officially licensed then Copts from outside can attend services any time, but if it is an association, then only village Copts will be allowed to attend the services. A penalty clause was included in which any part that attacks the other will pay 500,000 Egyptian pounds. Compensation for damages to the Coptic side will be paid by the government. No one was arrested.

According to Dr. Gabriel, St. George's Church was licensed five years ago. Rev. Charobim told Copts-United News the Deputy Security Director told the Christian party during the reconciliation meeting "Thank God for the outcome -- in other places people get killed."

The situation is now calm in the village.

By Mary Abdelmassih

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ansar al Sharia Egypt releases founding statement

Written by Thomas Joscelyn
Tuesday, 20 November 2012
The Long War Journal

Ahmed Ashush, a high-profile jihadist who has longstanding
ties to al Qaeda who has founded Ansar al Sharia Egypt
Ansar al Sharia Egypt has published its founding statement online. The group says that "preaching and jihad are two wings that are indispensable to the spread of Islam," according to a translation prepared by the SITE Intelligence Group.
And the group outlines sixteen goals with that two-pronged approach in mind.
In addition to calling for the implementation of sharia law, and the resurrection of the Caliphate, the organization says it will work towards "the liberation of the Muslim lands from foreign invasion" and resist "modern colonialism, especially the Zionist-Crusader colonialism that is led by America and the West."
Ansar al Sharia Egypt also says, according to SITE's translation, that it will support "the mujahideen and their movements and groups in the different lands of the Muslims so as to resist the Zionist-Crusader colonization, and this comes at the head of our priorities."
The founding statement is signed by Ahmed Ashush, a high-profile jihadist who has longstanding ties to al Qaeda. During a recent television appearance, Ashush criticized Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi for not imposing sharia law. Ashush has consistently denounced the democratic process as well.
On Sept. 16, less than a week after the Sept. 11 protest at the US embassy in Cairo, Ashush released a fatwa online calling for the makers of the film "Innocence of Muslims" to be killed. "He who kills them is due the reward given to a mujahid from Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He," Ashush claimed, according to a translation by SITE. "So, hurry, hurry, O Muslim youth in America and Europe, and teach those filthy lowly ones a lesson that all the monkeys and pigs in America and Europe will understand."
BBC Monitoring reported that Ashush's fatwa "was advertised prominently on the main page of the key pro-al Qaeda website Shumukh al Islam, which has promoted the works of Ashush in the past."
After Ashush's fatwa was released, the Associated Press reported that he is an "al Qaeda-linked Egyptian jihadist...who was believed close to Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda's current No. 1, Ayman al Zawahiri."
According to the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Ashush was a "close friend of Muhammad 'Atef, aka Abu Hafs Al-Masri, one of al Qaeda's most prominent military commanders." Abu Hafs was killed during the US-led bombing campaign in Afghanistan in late 2001.
Ashush traveled to Afghanistan in 1989 to wage jihad, MEMRI reports, and he lived in Abu Hafs al Masri's home. Ashush also became "acquainted with Osama bin Laden and Ayman al Zawawhiri" before returning to Egypt to found a jihadist group. Ashush was imprisoned during the 1990s and released after Hosni Mubarak's fall from power.
Openly praises and defends al Qaeda
In 2007, a prominent jihadist ideologue named Sayyid Imam al Sharif (also known as Dr. Fadl) published a critique of al Qaeda's approach to waging jihad. Al Qaeda has been criticized by outsiders repeatedly, but Sharif's critique was especially powerful given his longstanding relationship with Ayman al Zawahiri.
A group of jihadists who were then imprisoned came to al Qaeda's defense. Ashush was among them. A statement signed by Ashush and seven others rejected Sharif's attempted reformation. Their statement read:
"We support all jihad movements in the world and see in them the hope of the nation and its frontlines toward its bright future. We say to our Muslim nation that no matter how long the night may last, dawn will emerge."
Ashush's cosignatories included Mohammed al Zawahiri, the younger brother of al Qaeda emir Ayman al Zawahiri, and another al Qaeda-linked jihadist named Sheikh Tawfiq al 'Afani. Both the younger Zawahiri and al 'Afani helped incite protesters on Sept. 11, 2012 in Cairo. Muhammad Jamal al Kashef, an Egyptian Islamic Jihad (EIJ) terrorist who was reportedly involved in the attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi later that same day, also signed the rebuke of Sharif.
After Mohammed al Zawahiri was acquitted by an Egyptian military court in March 2012, Ashush congratulated Ayman al Zawahiri and the jihadist movement on the younger Zawahiri brother's release. Ashush praised Mohammed al Zawahiri for withstanding the "pressures" of the Mubarak regime. Ashush also asked God to grant Mohammed al Zawahiri "success in word and deed, [to] use him and not replace him, and grant him strength."
It didn't take long for Mohammed al Zawahiri and Ashush to begin working together publicly.
In April 2012, Al Faroq Media posted a video of Mohammed al Zawahiri and Ashush proselytizing in Cairo. The video also showed Sheikh Adel Shehato, a longtime Egyptian Islamic Jihad official who was recently arrested on terrorism charges and who also attended the 9/11 Cairo protest, as well as Murjan Salim, a senior Egyptian jihadist who has his own ties to al Qaeda.
Ashush told the crowd that the Salafist-jihadist movement led the way in "revolting against the apostate regimes." Ashush then called on those in attendance to pay respect to the leaders of the movement: Osama bin Laden and Ayman al Zawahiri.
The Al Faroq Media video shows Ashush, Mohammed al Zawahiri, and Shehato chanting, "Take a picture, Obama, all of us here are Osama." (A similar chant was heard during the Sept. 11 protest in front of the US Embassy in Cairo.)
In a June 2012 message addressed to Egyptians, Ashush praised the true jihadists who "are still on the path" and "cannot be defeated by desires because they raise the banner high regardless of who agrees or disagrees with them." Ashush's dismissed a video claiming that the Egyptian jihadist movement supported Ahmad Shafiq, a former official in Hosni Mubarak's regime, for president of Egypt.
Ashush said that the members of the "jihadist trend" are "led by the brave jihadist Ayman al Zawahiri and all of his comrades, God protect and watch over them." The Zawahiri-led jihadists "are a good example and the model to follow because of their commitment to the principles and sacrifice of the soul and everything precious in support of this religion."
"On the path you will find the leader of the mujahidin Osama bin Laden, the brave leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi, and many other brave and honorable examples," Ashush said in the June 2012 message.
The following month, in July 2012, Ashush published a criticism of Ennahda leader Rachid Ghannouchi. Ashush took issue with Ghannouchi's criticism of Ayman al Zawahiri, who Ghannouchi described as a "disaster to Islam and Muslims" and an "example of Islamic extremism." Ashush responded by accusing Ghannouchi of hypocrisy and of falling into the trap of democracy, which he claims the US uses to lead Muslims astray.
Ayman al Zawahiri, Ashush said, understands the true meaning of dawa, or Islamic proselytizing, as taught by the Muslim Brotherhood's Sayyid Qutb, a mid-20th century ideologue who is widely regarded as the intellectual forefather of al Qaeda. Ashush praised Zawahiri for his "truthfulness and dedication."
In his harsh response to Ghannouchi, Ashush summarized Ayman al Zawahiri's life, portraying the al Qaeda leader as a humble servant who was willing to cede leadership of al Qaeda to Osama bin Laden. Zawahiri is "not a man of the world, seeking a position or leadership, but rather a jihadist, who does his part wherever he is," Ashush wrote.
Ashush also attempted to credit Ayman al Zawahiri for sparking the Arab Spring, a fanciful reading of recent history. It was Zawahiri, Ashush said, who "planted the seed of rebellion against tyranny" by supporting the "Arab revolutions."
In the same July 2012 message, Ashush praised Ansar al Sharia Tunisia and its leader Abu Iyad al Tunisi, as well as "all those who work for Islam in Tunisia."
Ashush concluded his rebuke of Ghannouchi by asking God to "protect our sheikh, Dr. Ayman al Zawahiri, and all the mujahidin."
In another message published in July 2012, Ashush offered Salafist-jihadists in Gaza advice on how to combat "smear(s)" branding them as "terrorists." Ashush cited al Qaeda's leader, saying that "we must clarify the truth about our approach and how it represents purity, adherence to Islam, and compatibility with the view of the righteous forefathers, and as Dr. Ayman al Zawahiri called it: 'The Battle of the Book'." (Zawahiri and Ashush were referring to the Koran.)
One of al Qaeda's favorite ideologues
Given Ashush's penchant for praising Ayman al Zawahiri and Osama bin Laden, it is not surprising to see that al Qaeda has returned the favor. Al Qaeda has repeatedly spliced video of Ashush preaching in Egypt with clips of Zawahiri pontificating about Egyptian affairs. Zawahiri uses the clips of Ashush to reinforce his arguments.
Ayman al Zawahiri's Sept. 10 video is a case in point. Timed to coincide with the eleventh anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, Zawahiri eulogized Abu Yahya al Libi, a senior al Qaeda leader who was killed in a drone strike several months earlier. Zawahiri called for jihadists to avenge al Libi. Zawahiri also claimed that while al Qaeda has suffered losses, the organization's ideology is spreading. Therefore, in Zawahiri's eyes, the US has not defeated al Qaeda.
"America realizes full well that the material power of al Qaeda cannot be compared to the material force of the Zionist alliance," Zawahiri argued in the Sept. 10 video, "but it understands that the message of the mujahideen in general and al Qaeda in particular is a warning to its end and defeat." According to a translation provided by the SITE Intelligence Group, Zawahiri claimed that al Qaeda's "message has spread amongst our Muslim Ummah, which received it with acceptance and responded to it."
Immediately after Zawahiri spoke these words, the al Qaeda video cuts to a clip of Ashush.
"And there were honorable men who offered everything dear, cheap and precious in this cause, and offered to us an example," Ashush says, according to SITE's translation. "Therefore, we find it incumbent upon us to offer them greetings on this day, the day when we move all of these Muslim masses towards the desired goal, towards the Islamic State - those men who sacrificed for the sake of Allah, and on top of them, Sheikh Osama bin Laden, may Allah have mercy on him and may Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, accept him among the martyrs."
Sitting beside Ashush as he lionized bin Laden in the video clip were Sheikh Adel Shehato and Mohammed al Zawahiri.
Shortly after Ayman al Zawahiri's Sept. 10 eulogy of Abu Yahya al Libi was released online, Ashush published his own tribute. Ashush praised the fallen al Qaeda leader as a "hero," asking that God accept al Libi "among the noble ones, martyrs, and righteous ones for he is their companion." Ashush promised that the jihad would continue even after al Libi's martyrdom. "Carrying out jihad is a duty until we conquer Rome and transform the Churches in America to mosques, in which the Koran flourishes," Ashush said.
Since the Sept. 10 video, al Qaeda has continued to trumpet clips of Ashush.
A two-part video starring Ayman al Zawahiri that was released on Oct. 24 includes nine video clips showing Ashush and other Egyptian jihadists, including Mohammed al Zawahiri.
Al Qaeda rebranding
Ashush's message dovetails neatly with Ayman al Zawahiri's. Both have called for the immediate implementation of Sharia law inside Egypt and they have criticized the Muslim Brotherhood-led government for not aggressively seeking to impose it.
The call to be ruled according to Sharia has become a key pillar of al Qaeda's post-Arab Spring agenda, and provides the group with a wedge issue it can use to criticize other, politically ascendant Islamists.
Al Qaeda's brand has also been tarnished throughout much of the Middle East and North Africa as the organization's principal victims have been Muslims.
As a result, al Qaeda-linked groups have adopted the Ansar al Sharia (meaning Partisans of Islamic law) brand in other countries. In Yemen, for instance, Ansar al Sharia is simply an alias for al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. Ansar al Sharia militia groups with links to al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb have been established in Libya. Earlier this month, the Moroccan government broke up an Ansar al Sharia cell that it said has ties to al Qaeda. And Ansar al Sharia Tunisia is led by a terrorist whose ties to al Qaeda have been recognized by the United Nations.
It is not a coincidence, therefore, that a jihadist whose vision has been endorsed by al Qaeda in its videos, and who openly praises al Qaeda's leaders, is the head of Ansar al Sharia Egypt.

Egypt's Coptic pope enthroned amid concern for Christian minority

Written by Reem Abdellatif
Monday, 19 November 2012
Los Angeles Times
Christians have faced church burnings and other attacks and have grown wary since President Mohamed Morsi, a former Muslim Brotherhood member, took office in June.

Pope Tawadros II, the new leader of
the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church
CAIRO — Amid months of sectarian unease, Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Church enthroned its new pope Sunday in an ornate, three-hour ceremony attended by top officials from the nation’s Islamist-led government.
Tawadros II, 60, was chosen the church's 118th pope this month in long-awaited elections following the death in March of Pope Shenouda III, who was patriarch for four decades. The cathedral of St. Mark, the church’s founding saint, erupted in applause when the papal crown was placed on Tawadros’ head.
Politicians, including Prime Minister Hesham Kandil, journalists and Coptic intellectuals, attended the ceremony. Tawadros did not address the congregation; instead, his written speech was read aloud by a member of the church. Tawadros pledged to work for harmony between Christians, who make up about 10% of Egypt's population, and majority Muslims.
“Pope Tawadros is a candid, honest man; throughout the ceremony, he was in tears,” said Hanan Fikry, a Coptic columnist and activist. “This shows he's genuine, and I hope he will prove to be a good leader for all of us.”
The pope's enthronement was a relief for a Christian community that has increasingly worried about its rights and freedoms under the Islamist-led government that replaced the secular regime of Hosni Mubarak, who was overthrown in February 2011.
The day before Tawadros was officially installed patriarch, acting Pope Pachomious officially withdrew the church from the nation's 100-member constituent assembly, which is responsible with drafting the post-revolution constitution. The church, along with women, secularists and minorities, fears the new constitution will limit civil rights and deepen the influence of Sharia law.
“Acting Pope Pachomious was still in charge this morning,” said Fikry. “He wanted to withdraw from the assembly to make sure the church's stand was known and that officials knew the Coptic Church would not allow such a narrow-minded constitution to be drafted with its name on it.”
Christians have faced church burnings and other attacks and have grown wary since President Mohamed Morsi, a former Muslim Brotherhood member, took office in June. Ultraconservative Islamists and jihadists have exploited new freedoms after the fall of Mubarak’s police state and have challenged secularists and moderate Islamists over the religious character of the country.
Morsi vowed to represent all Egyptians. But many Copts, including a young generation inspired by last year’s revolution and less inclined to let the church act as its political intermediary, are concerned that their rights will be ignored.
“The constituent assembly is acting as if nobody else exists in society. Its formation itself is faulty, it is bias and dominated by only one segment of Egyptian society,” said Fikry, referring to the Islamist political factions within the constitutional assembly.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Joseph Nassralla Lies About His Part in innocenace of Muslims

‘Innocence of Muslims’: Egypt Issues Arrest Warrants For 7 Men And 1 Woman Living in The USA, Interpol To Follow Up.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012
LA TIMES: Egypt’s general prosecutor has issued arrest warrants for seven Egyptian Coptic Christians and a Florida-based American pastor and referred them to trial on charges linked to an anti-Islam film that has sparked riots across the Muslim world.
The prosecutor’s office says the seven men and one woman, all of whom are believed to be outside of Egypt, are charged with harming national unity, insulting and publicly attacking Islam and spreading false information. The office says they could face the death penalty.

A statement from the prosecutor on Tuesday says Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, an Egyptian Copt living in Southern California and believed to be behind the film, is among those charged. So is Florida-based Pastor Terry Jones, who has said he was contacted by the filmmaker to promote the video.

Nakoula, who lives in Cerritos, has denied involvement with the film to his bishop. Authorities said he and his family are in hiding at an undisclosed location. Nakoula was questioned by federal probation officials early Saturday morning and escorted from his home to a “voluntary” interview. Another associate of the film, Joseph Nassralla, issued a statement posted on the website of anti-Muslim blogger and activist Pamela Geller.

Joseph Nassralla is the president of Media for Christ, which is the name of the organization that filed the film permit. He said he offered the charity’s broadcast studio for 10 days of filming but had nothing further to do with the movie (LIAR), which depicted the prophet Muhammad as a buffoon and sexual deviant. The low-budget anti-Islam film has stirred anti-American protests throughout the Arab world.
BBC NEWS REPORTS: Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a convicted fraudster living in California who has already been questioned by police there, is among those facing charges, the EGYPTIAN prosecutors office said. It also said the international police agency Interpol would be notified of the warrants. A request will also be filed with US judicial authorities.

EGYPT INDEPENDENT NEWS: Public Prosecutor Abdel Meguid Mahmoud referred eight people to the Cairo Criminal Court on Tuesday and ordered that they be taken into custody on charges of producing a film that defames the Prophet Mohamed. Among those named by Mahmoud are Morris Sadek and conservative American pastor Terry Jones. Also charged is Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, Prosecutor Abdel Meguid Mahmoud also called on the US authorities to arrest them and extradite them to Egypt. The seven US-resident Egyptians are Morris Sadek, Adel Riad, Nabil Bissada, Esmat Zaklama, Elia Bassily, Ihab Yaacoub and Jack Atallah.
On June 6, 2010, D-Day, Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer SIOA (Stop The Islamization of America) held a Rally at Ground Zero to protest the building of a mega-mosque 600 feet from Ground Zero. Among the were many speakers, Robert Spencer introduces two Coptic Christian human rights activists, Nabil Asaad and Dr. Esmat Zaklama, also Morris Sadek and Joseph Nassralla have been at numerous Pamela Geller 9/11 rallies in NYC..
FOX News Correspondent Pamela Geller Involved With Anti-Islam Film, She Played You All Suckers. Pamela Geller’s Blog Solicited Funds For a anti-Muhammad Film in Feb 2012. WTH, the movie “Innocence of Muslims” would have been completed by Feb 2012 but lots of cash would be needed to promote and distribute the film in Islamic countries.
LIVE LEAK: Yesterday, while compiling evidence for a report demonstrating conclusively that the 501(c)(3) nonprofit Media For Christ was the most significant force behind the production of the anti-Islamic trailer video “Innocence of the Muslims” which, after being posted on Youtube, has helped incite riots throughout the Islamic world, I came upon the following February 12, 2012 post, on the website of Atlas Shrugs — the blog of Pamela Geller, the anti-Islamic activist who cofounded the group Stop Islamization of Nations and helped incite and organize the nationally-notorious June 6, 2010 protest against the building of a mosque in lower Manhattan one of the speakers at the protest was Joseph Nassralla,head of Media For Christ.
Titled “A Movie about Muhammad: An Idea whose Time Has Come”, the Geller post contained a solicitation for funding for a movie about Muhammad. SEE
Pamela Geller’s Atlas Shrugs post introduced the financial solicitation with, “Ali Sina, renowned ex-Muslim author, founder of and SION Board member, has a brilliant idea, a plan, to educate and liberate those enslaved by the most radical and extreme ideology on the face of the earth, but he needs our help” [see footnote for background on Ali Sina, including his comparisons of Barack Obama to Hitler]. Then followed Ali Sina’s solicitation.
Bill Warner Private Investigator Sarasota Fl at

Friday, November 9, 2012

Media for Christ group got permit for movie believed to be 'Innocence of Muslims'


Media for Christ group got permit for movie believed to be 'Innocence of Muslims'

By Wendy Lee with Sharon McNary | September 14th, 2012, 1:37pm

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[1 min 10 sec]

sinahi tenurche/YouTube

A screenshot from a trailer for controversial anti-Islam film, "Innocence of Muslims."

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[1 min 10 sec]
The organization that received the film permit for a movie believed to be the controversial “Innocence of Muslims” was Duarte, Calif.-based nonprofit advocacy group Media for Christ.
Karen Herrera, deputy city manager for the City of Duarte, told KPCC that Media for Christ received a permit last year for a movie called "Desert Warriors" through Film LA, an organization that gives film permits for the County of Los Angeles. Herrera said she was told that information from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's department.
People involved in the film believe “Desert Warriors” later became “Innocence of Muslims.”
Meanwhile, the website The Smoking Gun reported Friday that Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, another man connected to the film, became a government informant after his 2009 arrest for bank fraud.
Joseph Nassralla Abdelmasih is the president for Media for Christ, which identifies itself as a non-denominational evangelical Christian organization that provides spiritual aid and humanitarian assistance. Nassralla has been introduced at speaking events as a Coptic Christian and human rights activist from Egypt.
Last year, Nassralla participated in a demonstration asking for Sheriff Lee Baca to resign over his praise of the Council on American Islamic Relations, an Islamic civil liberties group.
“I fled to America with my family because of the violence directed against me for my Christian faith,” Nasralla said in an announcement published on “Sheriff Baca must be fired, and the County must apologize to all of us who have suffered at the hands of the Muslim brotherhood.”
KPCC made efforts to reach Media for Christ on Friday. Calls to the nonprofit’s office were not answered.
Permit confirmed
Paul Audley, president of Film LA, confirmed to KPCC on Friday that the permit was issued on Aug. 18, 2011. He referred further questions to the County of Los Angeles, which said it would not release the film permit due to safety concerns.
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula has also emerged as another local man involved in the film. Nakoula told the Associated Press that he was in charge of the film’s logistics.
Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched Friday to the Cerritos cul de sac where Nakoula lives to provide security. Several media trucks staked out the Nakoula residence, but no one has entered or exited the home.
Nakoula has a criminal past and was convicted for drugs and engaging in identity theft, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Times also found an actor who received a check from Nakoula’s address for participating in the film.
It is unclear how "Innocence of Muslims" was funded. Media for Christ had revenues of more than $1 million last year, according to tax records.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

question about Innocence of Muslims movie

Dear Mr. Sadek:

       I am writing a sympathetic article about the Innocence of Muslims movie from a different angle than the ones I've seen in the media.  
 Gamaliel Isaac

“Disgusting and Reprehensible” said Hillary Clinton when referring to the YouTube  clip “Innocence of Muslims”  “We absolutely reject it’s content and message” she said hoping that her words would calm the raging Muslim world.  It is “a crude and disgusting video” Obama  told the United Nations and  “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam”.  “Innocence of Muslims is a stupid hate film” wrote numerous  bloggers.   Nakoula the author of the movie now sits in jail.  In countries all over the Muslim world there have been riots protesting  Nakoula’s movie.  Pakistani Government minister Ghulam Ahmad Bilour put a $100,000 bounty on Nakoula’s head.  An Egyptian Muslim cleric has called on American Muslim youth to kill Nakoula, and everyone involved in the video, including actors, actresses and anyone who has promoted Innocence of Muslims. Americans Muslims have threatened to chop off Nakoula’s head.  Richard Gere , told journalists he was open to shooting any movie that helped present Muslims in a more positive light.

This movie is hard to get hold of but it’s trailer is still available on YouTube despite pressure from the Obama administration on google to remove it.

The trailer starts with a constable telling a doctor “our prophet had 61 wives and 11 at the same time.”  According to  Islamic texts Muhammad did have many wives. 
The clip continues with the Doctor telling his daughter to close the clinic because of an angry mob on the street.  A Muslim says to burn the place and a woman is killed by a member of the mob.  
Muslim mobs have attacked Christians throughout the Middle East but have they attacked medical clinics?  A good place to find the answer is the religion of peace  web site.  The most recent example of an attack on a hospital prior to October 4, 2012 (the date this article was written)  took place in Iraq on January 15, 2011.  The most recent attack on a Christian doctor by Muslims took place on July 26, 2012 in Egypt.  The doctor was blinded because he asked Muslims to stop firing weapons up in the air  in celebration.  What about the murder of a Christian woman in the movie?  The most recent murder of a Christian woman by Muslims was on September 23, 2012 in Nigeria. 
In the movie trailer the police arrive and the master sergeant says “Freeze do not take any action until everything is over.” 
Lack of intervention by Muslim police when Christians are attacked is well known. 
In the next scene the doctor tells his daughter “The Islamic Egyptian Police arrested 1,400 Christians, tortured them and forced them to confess to killings”. 
There have been numerous incidents across the Arab world where police  have arrested Christians for infractions such as insulting Islam though often the role of police is to stay away while Arab mobs attack the Christians.   In one incident On 31 May 2008, monks and Christians close to the Coptic  Monastery of the  Saint Fana reported that monks' cells and a church belonging to the monastery had been attacked by a group of roughly sixty armed Arabs.

A subsequent attack left one Muslim killed, four Christians wounded, and three monks being briefly kidnapped, requiring hospital treatment upon their return.  (Al-Misri al-Yawm of 1, 2, 3 and 8 July 2008 , al-Usbua of 7 June 2008, al-Dustur of 2 July 2008 (Egyptian newspapers )The reason the  three kidnapped monks required medical treatment was because they  were tortured by the Arabs, The clashes were followed one day later by a demonstration of around 300 Coptic youth in Mallawi who blamed the government for "inaction in the face of repeated attacks by Muslims against their community."
Monks of the monastery criticized local police, stationed approximately 6 km from the monastery, for arriving at the monastery several hours after having been informed of the attack.
Not only do Egyptian police not protect the Copts the Egyptian  military attacks the Copts.  Activists marched to the state-run TV station in Cairo, chanting and demanding reforms. Instead of protection, however, the military regime responded with brute force. “Security” forces mowed down hundreds of Christian protesters with guns and tanks, killing dozens and injuring hundreds more.
Hundreds of thousands of Copts have already been forced to flee their homes.   Was it reprehensible of Nakoura to point out the plight of the Copts in his movie?
In the next scene in the trailer two men discuss hiding the disgrace that Muhammad was born of an unknown father.
Muslims believe the father of Muhammad was Abdallah but Muhammad was the wrong age to have been Abdallah’s son since Muhammad was 2 and his father had died six years previously.  This age discrepancy is from several Islamic sources. 
In another scene in the movie Muhammad’s wife Khadijah orders  him to sit on her lap. 
 According to  Ibn Ishaq’s book, The Life of Muhammad  Kadijah did a test to see if the spirit who came to Muhammad was an angel or the devil.  According to Ibn Ishaq the author of Sirat Rusal Allah the biography of Muhammad, she told Muhammad to sit on her lap and then disclosed her form and asked if Muhammad could still see the spirit.  When he said no she said that the spirit must be an angel and not the devil.
In the next episode in the movie Hadijah’s cousin says he will help Muhammad.  He says “ I will make a book for him. It will be mix between some versions of – from the Torah and some versions from the New Testament and mix them into false verses.”  The cousin dies and Muhammad is upset because he’s lost his inspiration.
The Koran makes reference to Christian and Jewish doctrine.  Biblical scholar Dr. Robert M. Price wrote:
"The Koran was assembled from a variety of prior Hagarene texts … in order to provide the Moses-like Muhammad with a Torah of his own...."
 Islamic expert Dr. Gerd-R. Puin similarly concludes:
"My idea is that the Koran is a kind of cocktail of texts that were not all understood even at the time of Muhammad. Many of them may even be a hundred years older than Islam itself. Even within Islamic traditions there is a huge body of contradictory information, including a significant Christian substrate...."
Islamic texts even quote al-Nadr a person who did not believe in Islam as saying regarding Muhammad “ He is spouting ancient legends that he has gathered from the mouths of men more learned than he."  

The author or authors of the Koran must have learned those doctrines somewhere.  The movie suggests that Khadija ‘s cousin Waraqa bin Naufil may have been the learned source of Islamic doctrine.  Waraqa had been converted to Christianity in the Pre-lslamic Period and used to write about the Gospel in Arabic.  According to Islamic texts when Waraqa died  the Divine Inspiration was paused (stopped) for a while so that Allah's Apostle was very much grieved. Nakoula calls the advisor to Muhammad “the master” in the movie.

In the next scene the master tells Muhammad that in the next raid to kill the men and capture the women, loot and sell the children. 
Islamic text support all of this.  According to the Koran Muhammad started his military career by  launching raids against the Quraysh and looting their caravans.  Two months after his first successful raid  Muhammad led over 300 men against a large Meccan caravan which was making its way home from Syria.
Muhammad told his followers:
"It is likely that Allah may give it to you as booty." (Ibn Sa'd, Vol. II, 9.)
Notice that he made it's God will to attack and steal and kill. In the next scene the master tells a married woman to wait for him in her tent.  A girl asks “Isn’t it shameful for a woman to expose herself to a man she does not know?” and the master answers that “Have you not heard what God has said in the Quran. The Master may desire whom he wants and shall be given whom he wants.”
According to the Koran (33:50), Allah made it legitimate for Muhammad to have sex with any woman who “offered” herself to him/  Muhammad permitted all the infidel woman that they could capture, as concubines (Koran 4:3).

According to (Sahih Bukhari 5.236) when Muhamamd was 51 years old he married  a six year old child, a marriage he consummated when she was 9 years old.  Muhammad explained that God wanted him to do so:

"...the Prophet said to her (Aisha), 'You have been shown to me twice in my dream. I saw you pictured on a piece of silk and someone said (to me). 'This is your wife.' When I uncovered the picture, I saw that it was yours. I said, 'If this is from Allah, it will be done.'"

According to the Muslim historian Abu Ja'far Muhammad bin Jarir al-Tabari (839-923),  one of Muhammad's many sons, Zayad married a beautiful wife by the name of Zainab and Muhammad wanted her.   One day Muhammad was talking with Aisha (one of his wives) when "a fainting overcame him." Then he smiled and asked, "Who will go to Zaynab to tell her the good news, saying that God has married her to me?" He then recited the revelation Allah had just given him, scolding him for being concerned about what people might think and thus refusing to marry Zaynab. (Qur'an 33:37)In the next scene in the movie an elderly woman says:
My age has exceeded 120 years and in all my young life ‘I haven’t seen such a murderous thug as Muhammad’. He kills men, captures women and children, robs the caravans, breaches agreements and treaties. He sells the children as slaves after he and his men have used them. And what’s more, he does this all in the name of God. What God is this? That he’s such an oppressor and so unfair to the people.
Perhaps the most famous example of Muhammad engaging in the behavior described by the woman in the movie was his actions toward the Jewish tribe of the Bani Quraysa.  He accused the Jewish tribe of the Bani Quraysa of wanting to betray him and had a convenient communication from the angel Gabriel who ordered him to attack them.  He went to them, put them under siege for 14 days. Finally they surrendered. So Mohammed killed all their men, enslaved their women and children [Saheeh Muslim - 1769].  Ibn Ishaq gave the details:

The apostle went out to the market of Medina and dug trenches in it.  Then he sent for the men of Qurayzah and struck off their heads as they were brought out to him in batches until 600 to 700 of them were dead.

The Jewish women and children were enslaved and Muhammad took one of them, a fifteen year old girl named Rayhana bint Zayd ibn Amr as a personal slave.In the movie, the elderly woman, is torn apart by camels tied to opposite ends of her  body after saying this.

This scene is based on the murder of Umm Qirfah a leader of the Fazarah tribe.  According to  Tabari Vol.8:Page.96

Allah’s Messenger sent Zayd to Wadi Qura, where he encountered the Banu Fazarah. Some of his companions were killed, and Zayd was carried away wounded. … After he recovered, Muhammad sent him with an army against the Fazarah settlement. He met them in Qura and inflicted casualties on them and took Umm Qirfah prisoner. ..  Zyad bin Harithah ordered Qays to kill Umm, and he killed her cruelly. He tied each of her legs with a rope and tied the ropes to two camels, and they split her in two.In the next scene we hear:
Let us take the other treasure. Cut off his arms and his legs and then his head and do it in front of his beautiful wife Sophia.

[Human Exterminator]
(laughs) As you command Master.
This is probably based on the story of Safiyya a 17 year old girl of "incomparable beauty" (Ibn Saad, al-Tabaqat, pp. 120-123) whose husband Kinana knew where the treasure of his tribe was hidden.  In order to get Kinana to reveal where the treasure was the Muslims lit a fire on his chest but Kinana died refusing to reveal it’s location.  Muhammad killed Safiyya’s  father himself along with the Jewish men of Qurayza.  Muhammad forced Safiyya to be one of his wives and raped her.The inescapable conclusion of this analysis of the movie is that it closely resembles events described in Islamic texts.  If one says as Secretary of State Clinton did, that it is a disgusting and reprehensible movie one is really saying that Islam is a disgusting and reprehensible religion. 



THINK-ISRAEL features essays, analyses and commentaries that provide context for current events in Israel. The war Islamists are waging against Israel and the West is a top priority.



A. Was it a riot due to Muslim anger at a movie called the Innocence of Muslims?
This is actually two questions.
  1. Was it a riot? No, it was a terrorist raid.
  2. Why is the Obama Administration directly implicated? The riot story was certainly not concocted by the terrorists. The Administration started calling it a riot almost immediately. The Administrations knew two hours into the attack that it was unmistakeably a terrorist raid, yet for almost two weeks, they continued to mislead the public by calling it a spontaneous riot.
  3. Was it due to anger about a movie about Muhammad? No. We aren't sure why the terrorists attacked. Possible motives that have factual basis are:

    • to kidnap the Ambassador and swap him for the Blind Sheikh, who is sitting in a U.S. prison

  4. the local band of terrorists, Ansar al-Sharia, were celebrating the first 9/11

  5. Ambassador Christopher Stevens was engaged in gathering up weaponry left loose after Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi was killed. The local terrorists have a competing interest in obtaining and keeping the weaponry. This sounds incredible but actually has the most credibility.

Why is the Obama Administration directly implicated? Other such weapons from Gaddafi's warehouses have shown up in Sinai, Mali and Syria. It suggests that after the massacre the Administration has tried to prevent it from becoming more widely known that the U.S. is supplying weaponry to the rebel groups fighting Syrian President Assad. Seasoned Al-Qaeda members are a major rebel asset. The Administration can not be seen to be associated with al-Qaeda.
B. Did officials in the Obama administration prevent people going to aid fellow Americans in danger?
This also breaks into two separate issues.
  1. Did the Administration refuse to allow trained fighters located within a mile to go help the Americans rebuff a terrorist attack.The former Naval SEALS who volunteered to go to the rescue of the Americans under siege were been told to stand down. They went anyways -- against orders.
  2. Did the Administration deny pleas from the Americans for help?Yes.

Why is the Obama Administration directly implicated. We know Ambassador Stevens and others had warned that security arrangements in Libya were inadequate. They were allowed to deteriorate further. We know the White House knew within an hour that the worst case scenario had come about and American officials were in danger and desperately needed help. No one other than a very high echelon official could have sent help or withheld help. We know none was sent, despite pleas from the besieged Americans. We know trained fighters were on the ready, waiting for the President to push the GO button. He went to bed, instead. By doing nothing, he denied help to a group of Americans, a group that included an American Ambassador.
Unlike Watergate, this isn't a question of what did the President know and when did he know it. Ordinary protocols and procedures would ensure that the President knew within the hour that the Americans were under siege. The questions are: Who let the massacre run its course? And why?
Because of the nature of the events, the cast of possible culprits is small: the only ones with the authority to order the appropriate personnel either to stand-down or to set in motion the actions required to send help are Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, Director of the CIA David Petraeus, and the White House, primarily President Barack Obama and possibly his Grey Eminence, Valerie Jarrett. For some actions, only the President could initiate them.
Additional Material is available here on the front page of Think-Israel.
Bernice Lipkin
Editor, Think-Israel