Today's cartoon is from 1999.It was the last Hanukka of the 20th Century.
We are now in the tenth year of the 21st Century
...and the first night of Hanukka is tomorrow.Happy Holiday!
Monday through Friday
"Z STREET, an organization devoted to pro-Israel public education, today filed in federal court its Opposition to the government’s effort to continue violating the US Constitution by discriminating against the organization because its views on Israel and the Middle East differ from those of this government. On August 25, 2010 Z STREET filed a Complaint in federal court charging the Internal Revenue Service with constitutional violations by subjecting Z STREET’s application for tax exemption to a discriminatory process.In its response to Z STREET’s Complaint, the government did not deny that it engaged in this First Amendment violation. Instead, the government’s position is that (1) it can violate the Constitution whenever it wants and the only way to stop it is if the government agrees to be stopped, and (2) Z STREET should go to a different court to get something it should already have - tax exempt status - were it not for the constitutional violation the government has inflicted upon it." -moreAnd as reported by the Arab News on November 26:
Jewish group suing IRS over its tax-exempt statusAnd here's a link to Z Street.
". . . Z Street accused the IRS of “targeting pro-Israel groups” in federal court saying that it received a letter from an IRS agent that their tax experts said was likely outside the usual or appropriate scope of an IRS inquiry.“Does your organization support the existence of the land of Israel?” IRS agent Tracy Dornette wrote the organization, according to this week's court filing, as part of its consideration of the organizations application for tax exempt status.“Describe your organization's religious belief system toward the land of Israel.”The complaint also alleges that IRS agent Diane Gentry said applications from organizations dealing with Israel-related issues “are being sent to a special unit in the D.C. office to determine whether the organization’s activities contradict the administration’s public policies." -more
"Priest Wasseem Sabeeh was halfway through Sunday Mass, in Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad, when an explosion shook the church. Suddenly men with guns yelling Islamic prayers burst into the church. They fired at the priests, congregants, even murals of Mary and the saints.Some parishioners screamed and ran out. Sabeeh, 27, and another priest, Thaer Saadallah, 32, hastily directed dozens of others into a room near the altar, then turned to plead with the men in suicide vests to stop the killing.They shot Sabeeh at point-blank range, then shot Saddallah in the face. He fell on the steps of the altar, his vestments stained with blood."For further info on this under-reported Islamism please click on this recently published CAMERA report/
U.S. sees Atomic Arms Bid in New North Korea Plant "Senior U.S. defense officials said Sunday that the revelation of North Korea's new uranium enrichment facility confirmed long-standing suspicions that the country was seeking a second route to build atomic weapons. They dismissed the North's claim that it was simply trying to build nuclear power plants that it had never been able to obtain from the West.Asked in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where he was on an official visit, whether he believed the North's story that it was producing only low-enriched uranium that could not be used in nuclear weapons, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said told reporters "I don't credit that at all." He argued that the new facility, once it was operating, could enable North Korea to build "a number" of nuclear devices beyond the eight to 12 they are now presumed to have." -moreThen, according to the Sidney Morning Herald (Australia):
North Korean dictator-in-waiting linked to deadly artillery attack
"NORTH KOREA has burnished the leadership credentials of its 26-year-old dictator-in-waiting with a deadly artillery attack on South Korean territory, causing its neighbour to return fire and scramble F-16 fighters.Two South Korean marines died, and at least 12 were wounded. There were reports of civilian injuries and houses were set ablaze as scores of shells fell on Yeonpyeong island.A North Korea expert at Beijing's Central Party School, Zhang Liangui, told the Herald that Kim Jong-un was deliberately destabilising the environment in order to mobilise the military and consolidate his power." -more
Taliban makes demands in Afghan peace talks "The Afghan Taliban is demanding names of its senior leaders are removed from US and United Nations terror blacklists and that a number of prisoners are released as a precondition of further peace talks, according to a key insurgent negotiator." -moreAnd there are reports in the media about other "talks" with the Taliban.
Taliban leaders hold secret talks with Afghan president on al-Qaida linked Haqqani networkSo what do YOU think is going on?
By Kathy Gannon (CP) – Oct 31, 2010KABUL — "Three Taliban figures met secretly with Afghanistan's president two weeks ago in an effort by the Afghan government to weaken the U.S.-led coalition's most vicious enemy, a powerful al-Qaida linked network that straddles the border region with Pakistan."A former Afghan official said the meeting in Kabul included an ex-Taliban governor, Maulvi Abdul Kabir. He comes from the same Zadran tribe as the leaders of the Haqqani network, an autonomous wing of the Taliban responsible for many attacks against U.S. and Afghan forces, the former official said over the weekend." -more
"-We have 50 million Muslims in Europe. There are signs that Allah will grant Islam victory in Europe - without swords, without guns, without conquests. The 50 million Muslims of Europe will turn it into a Muslim continent within a few decades." "-Allah mobilizes the Muslim nation of Turkey, and adds it to the European Union." "-That's another 50 million Muslims. There will be 100 million Muslims in Europe. Albania, which is a Muslim country, has already entered the E.U." "-Bosnia, which is a Muslim country, has already entered the E.U. Fifty percent of its citizens are Muslims.""-Europe is in a predicament, and so is America. They should agree to become Islamic in the course of time, or else declare war on the Muslims." -more
"Israel has been under international pressure to ease its blockade of the Gaza Strip, especially after an attack by its commandos on an aid convoy to Gaza last May that left nine dead. Yet, even as Israel has begun to let cars and other once-prohibited goods into the Mediterranean enclave, Hamas itself hasn’t always welcomed the increased flow of goods.Private vehicles joined the list of permitted goods last month. Since then, nine shipments have passed through the Kerem Shalom checkpoint, containing 180 new or slightly used cars.The problem for Hamas is that it doesn’t profit from the official car imports because the taxes on the vehicles are paid to the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, Hamas’ rival for control of the Palestinian territories, said Abu-Shahla. The only reason Hamas allows cars in at all, he said, was to ease pent up demand on the street and mounting criticism of the government, he said Where it can and does collect taxes is on the vehicles and other goods smuggled through tunnels from Egypt, but the price to the consumer for these vehicles is much higher and the supply is limited. During the years that Israel banned car imports, a new, smuggled automobile -- brought in disassembled through the narrow tunnels -- could cost up to $40,000. The same car brought through Kerem Shalom now costs about $25,000." -more
"Reports said the weapons and explosives had been transported by 16 vehicles to the huge tunnel network that spanned the Egyptian-Gaza border. The cache found on October 18 contained machine guns, grenades, mines, body armour and other equipment.No arrests were reported. The sources said the shipment was to have been smuggled through three tunnels from Sinai to Gaza. One of the tunnels was large enough for the transport of the vehicles.Egypt has made significant progress in the fight against weapons smuggling to the Gaza Strip. In 2010, 582 tunnels were discovered in the region, 16 of them large enough for the smuggling of cars and trucks." -more
...Israel's party capital won praise for its tolerant attitudes and thriving gay culture and Lonely Planet also says "Thanks to its university and museums, it is also the greenhouse for Israel's growing art, film and music scenes." "Scratch underneath the surface and Tel Aviv, or TLV, reveals itself as a truly diverse 21st-century Mediterranean hub. By far the most international city in Israel, Tel Aviv is also home to a large gay community, a kind of San Francisco in the Middle East," Lonely Planet says.This summer, the prestigious National Geographic Magazine named Tel Aviv as one of the world's top ten beach cities, dubbing it "Miami Beach on the Med." It was also voted the third best city in Africa and the Middle East by the New York-based Travel + Leisure Magazine; one of the world's top "Party Cities" by Forbes Magazine and the Lonely Planet Travel Guide; and was included in the Louis Vuitton 2010 European Cities Guide. -more
"Yemen is the Afghanistan of the Arab world. It is the poorest Arab country, its government is weak, its people are armed, it already faces a serious rebellion, it is strongly tribal and its mountain ranges are a natural refuge for groups like al-Qa'ida. There is nothing new about the growing political, social and economic crisis in Yemen, but the world is waking up to it only since the attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound plane has been linked to al-Qa'ida in Yemen. Last night the regional wing of the group claimed responsibility for training and arming Nigerian student Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab with the Christmas Day bomb.Yemen has been becoming increasingly unstable over the past two decades, ever since Saudi Arabia expelled a million Yemeni workers because Yemen refused to support the US-led war to expel Saddam Hussein's army from Kuwait in 1990." -moreComments?
Top U.S. security official warns on more mail bombs
October 31, 2010 (JTA) -- "More mail bombs like those that were mailed to synagogues in Chicago may be out there, a top U.S. security official told news shows.John Brennan, the deputy national security adviser, said on the Sunday morning programs that there might be more mail bombs like the two discovered last Friday. He added that the potential attacks are characteristic of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula."They are a dangerous group. They are a determined group. They are still at war with us and we are very much at war with them," Brennan told "Meet the Press." "They are going to try to identify vulnerabilities that might exist in the system."On Saturday, security forces in Yemen arrested a Sana’a University engineering student, 22-year-old Hanan Al-Samawi, suspected of mailing two bombs to the synagogues. Samawi's mother, 45, also was arrested, according to reports.President Obama said last Friday in a televised news conference that the packages headed for the United States constituted a "credible terrorist threat" and had been addressed to Jewish organizations in the Chicago area." One of the reported targets was Congregation Or Chadash, which serves gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Jews, and shares space with Emanuel Congregation, a Reform temple, in a building along Chicago's lakefront, according to the Chicago Tribune.-more