Part 2- Q & A with author-”The Muslims Are Coming” – NYPL (10-16-14)

Part 1 of Dr. Kundnani’s presentation is here>>

“The Muslims Are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism and the Domestic War on Terror” by Dr. Arun Kundnani .

muslims-are-coming-bookKundnani has a theory that must rise above historical misunderstandings of Islam. He insists: The War on Terror is NOT about Islam. It is all about POLITICS, the FBI and government entrapment.

Whether the question was in agreement with him or not (though most seemed to support him) Kundnani predictably brought his answer back to his meme: The War on Terror is NOT about Islam. It’s about POLITICS; the FBI; entrapment.

Part Two : The Q and A – with a partial transcription for 14 questions and answers. (Q & A was still going on when I left)


Q and A BEGINS: Man asks – #1- re Entrapment Defense used by the terrorists has not been successful… through the justice department…

Answer – Kundnani: The way the entrapment defense is supposed to work, you begin saying the actions that you are accused of would not have occurred were it not for the government’s intervention. you, also, have to prove you did not have a predisposition to commit those acts BEFORE the government intervened. So far, No ONE has successfully won an entrapment defense in any of these Federal Terrorist related cases, BECAUSE it is very hard for the defendants to say they did NOT have a ‘predisposition’. That’s because the Prosecution brings  a (so-called) Terrorism EXPERT in to the court who says that because this guy visited these web sites, expressed these opinions, that constitutes a predisposition to be a terrorist. What are those websites and the opinions expressed? Often, radical criticism to U.S. foreign policy OR expressions of belief that should be protected by the First Amendment (of the Constitution). The courts, the system, does not supply sufficient protection from that kind of abuse (of the First Amendment) from taking place.

Kundnani uses this moment to refer to Abdullah -Alim and his arrest for Gun possession. [46:29] Pointing out that THIS is NOT considered a TERRORISM related case. He doesn’t get to make his entrapment argument at all. The jury hears nothing about the FBI. Straight court-case. Guy stopped on street. Possession of a gun.

Kundnani CLAIMS this to be a sufficient protection from that kind of abuse (of the First Amendment) from taking place.

Kundnani uses this moment to refer to Abdullah -Alim and his arrest for Gun possession. [46:29] Pointing out that THIS is NOT considered a TERRORISM related case. He doesn’t get to make his entrapment argument at all. The jury hears nothing about the FBI. Straight court-case. Guy stopped on street. Possession of a gun.

Kundnani CLAIMS this to be a situation where THE COURTS are NOT providing PROTECTION to people who are being abused (so he claims) in this way (by the FBI)

Question # 2 - Is more about suggestion how potential informants might protect themselves BEFORE they agree to be an informant, This guy suggests that you PUBLISH in a magazine (for about $20) that the FBI approached you [47:15]

Kundnani replies: He thinks this is beyond most peoples means. That it seems a bit dramatic. Mosques are aware that they are targets for the FBI. So sadly,  they are no longer welcoming to strangers who wish to join the mosque. They are suspicious of potential new members. VERY suspicious of anyone who talks Radical Talk while trying to bring about an entrapment. Mosques are now reporting that they have someone in he congregation who’s talking in an angry, radical way.

He mentions the immigration status of many of these potential informants, who are here ILLEGALLY. Vulnerable to being removed if they find themselves on the wrong end of the Federal Government. People are aware that the FBI can use its powers to TARGET you, it takes a little bit of courage to publish that the FBI is approaching you (for entrapment). He says Abdullah-Alim HAD that courage and he’s now spending 16 years in prison.

Kundnani says the more we can talk about these issues, the more we can overcome the fear and the isolation. To think about strategies.

Kundnani feels it is not possible to be as straight forward as Questioner # 2 was suggesting.[51:34]

Question # 3 [man with accented English] Clearly he agrees with Kundnani’s presentation by how he phrases his statement/question. He states ‘What’s new here?”  He refers to government tactics targeting potentially radical groups. He mentions England where two years ago, he says, the government proposed to criminalize ‘free speech’, not just for radicalized groups but, for university.

Question (finally).Is the biggest threat coming from the government or from the criminalization of being anti-Islamic . The minds seem to be already ‘colonized’ by all that rhetoric that happen in U.S. That happen in Europe. Isn’t it better (??) the police tactics from the government?

Answer from Kundnani [53:22] (Not sure HOW this answer came out of that question above ) He says that is what he covers in his book.

The history of the FBI- 1940′s- Claiming that what’s different now from the FBI’s abuses under Hoover.  Hoover had a program in the late 1950′s to criminalize the LEFT and to criminalize the Civil Rights Movement.

Kundnani says it was UNDERSTOOD at the time, by Hoover and the people that exposed it, as unauthorized criminal activity by the FBI. That’s why it had to be secret.

Exposed in the early 1970′s, recognizing that this secret program was against the Constitution; against the law. With 1990′s legislation in the U.S. the government can now do the same stuff lawfully. Some one can now be convicted not for something they are doing, but for expressing opinions.

Kundnani also says that to write this book, he had access to material that’s not public, but THIS is Open Secrets. ” If you publish an article that says something positive about a terrorist organization, you are effectively providing resources. material support to that organization.Twenty years ago we’d have understood that activity as First Amendment protected.

Re Change: He feels this is about how we THINK about theses issues in society. We’re not going to bring about change by changing government policies here or by changing how we do counter-terrorism policy coming out of Washington.

What we NEED is a more FUNDAMENTAL change in how we question violence in society. How we THINK about Muslims.

Are we able to recognize Muslims as fellow citizens when they express opinions that we disagree with and not seen as extremism, but seen as just someone else expressing an opinion from us.

That’s the KEY test.

Next Kundnani refers to the questioner’s mentioning of pieces of legislation in Europe that target, not radicals, but what we consider to be radicalization is somewhat nebulous and vague.

Looking at how we use the word extremism in the United States, in relation to Muslims, we don’t use that term just for people who advocate violence, we use it in a much wider way-to talk about people’s choice in clothing. [58:21]

QUESTION #4 – a woman-“Going back to the recent beheadings, now you did say that you were compare the United Kingdom and the U.S. in regard to these kind of practices so I was just ‘looking’ at that. And, also, other than interviewing people who were in the FBI, have you in anyway been involved with the FBI-type work in your career?

Kundnani asks her to clarify what she is asking. (he euphemistically responds) That there seems to be more people coming from Britain involved in that “kind of activity”? Syria- UK – [she mentions the radicalization being worse in UK.] He continues, that for about a decade now the story, the impression, is that there is a bigger problem in the UK compared to the US. (He does not agree) He claims it’s very hard to reach that conclusion based on the actual statistics.

This is Kundnani’s answer (of sorts)

He thinks it’s about the same. Many from UK have gone to Syria (he says) for Humanitarian reasons, medical/nursing, in opposition to the Assad regime. Some join groups supported by US, some have joined ISIS.

NOW he starts talking about the son of a man who is between held in a downtown New York prison [1:02] The Metropolitan Correctional Center on Park Street. A Federal Building where we hold people accused of terrorism (Pre-trial) He’s Egyptian.

Egyptian Security services have wanted him for a long time. He was in prison in Britain for about 10 years without being convicted of a crime, extradited to the U.S. The son has grown up with his father in prison, the victim of a great miscarriage of justice. (HOW does this  answer her question??? about beheadings. Seems he’s just making sure to keep his talking points on-the-floor)

QUESTION # 5 (a woman)  [1:03] The questions started to get bit more demanding.   (Accented English. Hard to understand) re “God of Islam” and madrassas.

Kundnani explains this is not his field- She is slightly argumentative- He responds this is what would be solved by the so-called terrorism experts. Another woman is saying that she asked, what does it mean. Lots of chatter happening at the same time. (He tries to answer the question that is apparently about the madrassa and a phrase that is about the ‘House of Islam”. About how to define the world(the woman keeps talking over him)

He tries to respond again:”These are kind of emotional issues I get once in awhile [1:05;30] I understand we have strong feelings, but…again…this mythology we’re being told that somehow that THEY (she interrupts him again) He responds,  “You have to let me try to answer your question.” (she KEEPS talking over him)

He tries again, “We can talk about this ONE ideology called Islam. That everyone follows in the same way. This kind of monolith. Then we are told that these are the kind of beliefs that everyone in this monolith believes. Then you get the version where there are moderates on the one hand and there’s extremists — (and she INTERRUPTS HIM AGAINBut, he continues –“…eventually we come to the same point, talking percentages. How many are extremists. THIS is the mythology we’re being sold.” [1:07;15] (He insists) This is not HOW people turn into terrorists …. because of religious text. There is absolutely NO evidence for that. (!!)

You’ve been TOLD that because it’s a NICE story to explain to you WHY we’re involved in this thing called the “War on Terror”. The REAL reason: It’s ALL about POLITICS and NOT religious Ideology. (she is still chattering in the background as the audience APPLAUDS him)[1:07;40]

Question #6 (a woman – Devils Advocate) WHY are you blaming the victims? (9-11) We’re not blaming ALL Muslims but, what happened to the Moderate Muslims who need to put their best foot forward and recognize that they do have a certain amount of extremism. (She then mentions the American Japanese in WW 2 who were interred.)

They were not responsible for the actions of Japan but, because they were so vilified (she says) the internment was so we could protect them. We don’t want to see Civil War in our streets the way ISIS is doing it.  All we want – WHY are WE the VICTIMS not allowed to have the FBI to protect me…her? WHY are YOU right and I’m wrong?[1:08;55]

Kundnani tries to respond (she keeps talking in the background) First, you said I’m blaming the victims of 9-11. Kundnani insists he is NOT blaming the victims. He says our governments approach to counter-terrorism is misguided. We need to be consistent in our morality here.

If we’re going to condemn 9-11, we also need to condemn the actions of our OWN government when IT kills civilians. If we want to talk about morality, THAT’S moral consistency.

When our own government carries out violence, which could be domestically, we have to condemn that as passionately as we condemn the violence of 9-11. That’s the ONLY way we can condemn 9-11 without HYPOCRISY. (the room becomes a MESS of cross-talking)

(Rising above the vocal mess) He makes the point that the internment of the American Japanese (put in camps to “PROTECT” them) was one of the most Civil Rights (….?) that the US government has done in the last century [1:11;44] (She continues to argue with him and to babble-on til the next question)

Question #7 (a woman) [1:12;09] She feels he would have a much better argument if he said that the vast majority of Muslims are not radicalized, they don’t follow these teachings. But, when you say Islamic teachings never have anything to do with this, quite frankly it’s not believable.

NY Times had an interview, head of Pakistani madrassa system said that the “most important thing for his madrassa students to realize was that the destruction of the West is really the most important thing in Islam.” You can say that he is misinterpreting Islam, but I’m sure he believes that the madrassa system is (…?) Islam for him.

He has a PHD in Islamic Theology. He is exterminating Yizidis and Christians; selling them in to slavery. He is NOT doing that because he is reacting to the actions of the United States. So, I would ask, it’s just not credible to say that Islam never had anything to do with this.

Yes, the West has done wrong-things, but it’s not credible, in my opinion. I’d like to know how you respond to that. (there is a smattering of applause)

Kundnani jumps right back to his meme, not wavering one little bit: Islamic theology is NOT the CAUSE of Terrorism [1:13;26] He says she’s kind of objecting to something he’s not exactly saying (!?)

He takes a broader point with two talking points:

“Extremism causes terrorism.
Moderate Islam is a Religion of Peace.”

“This still leaves you,” he says, “with this flawed assumption that ideology causes Political Violence and Terrorism.

Ideology does NOT cause political violence and terrorism.

One does not become a terrorist because he read an Islamist extremist texts. That’s never happened.

Someone watches videos, becomes propagandized, becomes a terrorist. Never happened.

Kundnani gives one example of a woman in London, Choudhury, who is the closet example (he says) that it happened. That’s IT.

The others:
It’s Mental Health problems.
Looking for a Sense of Adventure.
OR Political Injustices.
THAT’S what the data tells you.

He says it’s very hard to be objective about this right now. [1:16;09] And THEN he claims that ” the place where you go for OBJECTIVE knowledge is University. It should be. That’s what  university is meant to do.”

So-called Terrorism Studies Departments, which have been founded by Federal Government after 9-11 with HUGE sums of money for a PARTICULAR agenda (!) There’s a revolving door between these particular departments. The FBI. The CIA. Various aspects of the National Security system. It’s NOT genuinely independent place.

SO, we have to start to create opportunities for a much more NUANCED, more ACCURATE account of what causes terrorism.

Instead of talking about radicalism, we need to be talking about the political cause (as well as) the way religious language is used, ways of expressing propaganda.

 QUESTION #8- A man [1:17;18] He must be a supporter. He begins with ‘Thank you. Thank you for everything.’ This is all about Obama.  He voted for him (twice)  He asks, “What is his role, in your theories about what’s going on…”

Kundnani’s response: Says he likes the question, because you would think that Obama would be pretty good on the issues.

He jumps to Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, the ‘so-called’ under-wear bomber  ( TSM: He was held at a Michigan federal prison and tried in a civilian court in Detroit, not a military tribunal , a controversy at the time.)

[1:18;36] Kundnani says, “After that incident, the way the media and the debate plays-out after-the-fact  actually set (??) the Obama administration. He’d just been in office a few weeks.”

The conclusion:  ‘They’ (the Obama administration) decide that this ‘issue’ of terrorism has the potential to destroy any (?….) debate; to undermine (??) [1:18;57]THEY decide this can’t happen again, to have an issue spiral out-of-control and  make it seem to the American people that WE’RE not tough on Terrorism.

Obama does two things(domestically). He gives the FBI Free-Hand. All kinds of Civil Rights and Muslim Community organizations are constantly turning up, saying we have the issues about civil rights not getting any play.

Internationally his strategy is, “We will try to close down Guantanamo”[1:19;38] Kundnani continues, “Which, of course, is the right thing to do.” We’re going to END torture.

In fact, we STILL out-source people who need to be tortured. We don’t do it ourselves any more. We’re going to try to bring those kinds of processes within the judicial system so we can (do it) with some sort of legal veneer.[1:20;04].

Then, still referring to Obama’s policies, he mentions drone-strikes as the (preferred?) kind of killer-act for counter-terrorism. We don’t need to do  something like the Iraq War  again. We don’t need to do interrogations (we’ve done so many now), we can just do extra–judicial killing. SO, he says, the ASSUMPTION was that the drone-strikes were THE solution.

He then mentions that Obama’s War on Terror Strategy is centered around his  weekly Tuesday morning meetings. (Does he attend these/DID he? ) The War on Terror strategy meetings, where the list of potential drone targets keeps growing and growing and with the advise coming from his National Security advisers.

But, Kundnani says, the drone-strikes aren’t really ‘doing it’. It just manufactures more people who were involved in violence. It seemed to be a quick-fix solution. But, it turned out to be worse. [1:21;28] Kundnani  continues,We keep looking for these quick-Fix solutions, which involve inflicting violence on other people””

(A woman mentions Bin Laden) Kundnani he responds: It seems like we are making  progress on the War on Terror. Yet, we have another round of (…..) which resembles what we were getting in 2003.

The evening Bin-Laden was killed- Peter Berg CNN’s Terrorism (guy) [1:22;10] said THIS is the END of the War on Terror (2011) It’s a decade. We’re DONE. (If only, says Kundnani) But, next morning, Hillary Clinton steps up and says the War on Terror continues. Lunch Time, the next day, Berg (back tracks). He is back on  and says, the War on Terror is NOT over.

Kundnani says, the government did not use this opportunity to draw a line and think about these issues in a NEW way. They made a strategic error by saying “more of the same’ and the message from CNN becomes just a sort of ‘mouth-piece’ for the government.

(Finishing his response to the woman) Yes, we ‘got them out’, but it doesn’t feel like actually representing a ‘kind-of’ progress in retrospect now (The woman speaks, saying , “If we had not, we  don’t know what it would be like now) Kundnani feels it would be pretty much the same place.[1:23;45]

 QUESTION #9  A man -  [1:23;53]“Thank you for a very interesting presentation. (his question) Even if your more ‘nuanced’ approach is the better one, once any massive terrorist attack occurs, wouldn’t any administration in power at the time be blamed for letting it happen.”

Kundnani’s response: Yes. (the man interrupts- every administration is afraid ) Yes, but, if you don’t have a serious attack, no one’s going to give you any credit for it. Now, any president, is just thinking about SELF-interest (wow – what a broad statement of ‘fact’: any and ALL presidents?) and that, he says, would a a TOUGH approach.

[1:25;30] He feels public opinion  in the Fight Against Terrorism should we trade Civil Liberties for (greater ?) Powers for the Government. Ten years later (after people said ‘yes’) now people are saying, we should Keep our Civil Liberties.

It’s not just about the incident of a Terrorist attack, it’s about how we communicate about that terrorist attack in the aftermath. For example,  the Boston Marathon bombing. It didn’t produce any really significant changes in counter terrorism ( …?)  The reason: We’d been told for decades to expect something like that, if not worse. And when it hap pened, people were outraged, but they weren’t surprised or shocked. It didn’t generate the same kind of dynamic as the Post  9-11.  (man interjects) But very few people were really killed. And you had thousands (Kundnani interrupts him) But, terrorism is about terror, not just about the number of people killed so … look at the beheadings videos, where again, the number of people being killed is not the same as 9-11, but it’s generated a whole lot of fear… in the United States… The man says, “But, people were killed—” Kundnani takes the next question.

Question #10 – a woman (accented English-Chinese) [1:27;08] This is just my observation. I agree with you.  You do something wrong…  you the minority must  justify…  The strategy…to wipe out the rich people. The so-called rich people. Or the intellectuals. I don’t follow you very well, I feel like there is similarity. When I grew up in China. I didn’t feel brain-washed. I was not active in politics. But, since I came to America, I find, I feel like brainwashing is universal. Not just in China. Right now we have so much brainwash. In America. I feel there is so much misunderstanding.

Your presentation, I think there is some truth, it’s not about… it’s like the Chinese Falun Gong. Americans have convince themselves we’re a religion, we’re not politics. Its totally politics. The Chinese, you have to understand the culture and I know Chinese culture so well, to know that Falun Gong is not a religion, it’s politics. So I really appreciate your point. (healthy applause)

Kundnani’s response [1:29;20] Thank you. All I can say is, an ideology is most affective when you don’t realize it’s an ideology.  So in a society like the Soviet Union, or China, it’s obvious that it’s the State propaganda. We’re not a Totalitarian Society which makes the ideologies we (Americans? The West?) have less obvious. In a way, it makes them all the more pernicious. An interesting comparison. Thank you.

Question #11- a Muslim man [1:29;55]I’m a Muslim and my family has been Muslim since the Time of  the Prophets. (lots that he said was garbled) I’m a Muslim. But, I am Arabic. So, my experience with Western Foreign Policy is quite different from a Muslim who is Palestinian. A Muslim who is Pakistani. He mentions Sharia. [1:30;31] (He is difficult to understand)[1:30;51] He says we have to understand Muslim Community. State Religion. Every major (..?) is in Arabic.  Our Religious beliefs are the same. Our Cultures are quite different. (hard to understand again) To combat Terrorism we have to go back to his culture, hi people who are committing this act. Ask WHY. Being Muslims (..?) (applause)

Kundnani  [1:31;50] Thank you. The way you are talking about culture there, has some problems for me. “It’s not the religion that cause the violence, but it’s the CULTURE.” (the man interjects) It’s your cultural ‘experience’. Perhaps I can be a bit more precise about it. (but he isn’t) If you’re talking about POLITICAL context where you have bombings….for me I’d describe that as a POLITICAL experience, NOT a Cultural Experience. (of course he would)

The reason I make that distinction... in order to defend against prejudice against Islam we create NEW prejudices against particular ethnic groups. We say Arabs because of their Cultural History become terrorists. Kundnani says he is personally uncomfortable with the idea that we would be saying they became terrorists because of their ethnicity (examples: Pakistanis or West Africans)

He ends with an obscure conclusion—When talking about different POLITICAL differences, you’re absolutely right the political experience is hugely different. Different scenarios.

Question #12 – a man- [1:33;38] Thanks for speaking and putting up with us for so long. You’ve been talking about how a person’s political context and their political experience can lead them to make a certain set of decisions. In the context of Osama bin-Laden and al-Qaeda, as far as my knowledge of their history goes, the kind of justification for the actions he had stemmed originally from the U.S. military presence in Saudi Arabia. And I guess you can keep going back and forth with the U.S. military reacted this to this thing because another group did this thing… and you can get back to the 60′s and Said Qu’tab and all these people…and you go back and forth…

So, how to you, kind of, make the distinctions that you are making that would stop the discussion from devolving into “He Said this/She Said this” or this came first…I think some of the comments that were happening earlier in this discussion: The FBI does this thing because Muslims or Arabs (whatever) have done this thing, but the counter-argument might go: The Arabs are acting this way because the U.S. government does this thing. And it could just go on and on forever.

Kundnani responds [1:34;49] (had difficulty transcribing some of this response) Right. And that’s the cycle we’re in. That’s my whole point. We’re doing this to you because you did this to us earlier. That’s precisely the cycle we need to break. I would hope that (the society?) in the United States will be much better at breaking that cycle than our enemies. We should be the reasonable ones with a strategy to break that cycle, much more effectively.

There’s always going to be the Bin Ladens who have an ideology that they use to legitimize their violence. (Their God? [1:35;36] Did he say that?) But, what we can do is to intervene to actually make their benevolent support for those people much reduced. (that’s about change…?)

Right now, for me, thinking about the situation with ISIS, we need to radically rethink our whole alliance with Saudi Arabia. Probably Turkey as well. Thinking along those lines is the key to breaking these cycles.

We’ve turned a blind-eye to Saudi Arabia and the official and semi-official funding that it provides for armed groups in the Middle East; for decades. We have assumed that we NEED Saudi Arabia to be our ‘friends’ , to supply cheap oil into our economy and to keep buying our weapons. The REALITY is we DON’T need to do that.

We actually get most of our oil from Canada so we can radically change our whole relationship with Saudi Arabia and as a result see that horribly unDemocratic regime over thrown once we withdraw our support (…??)

[1:36;53] Right now the people who are most affected by the United States are the Kurds. (… ) We’re never going to allow them to do very much because we have to hold on to Turkey as our ally.

We don’t want the Kurds to become more influential in the region. (…) If we’re serious, the United States, we should be doing something very different in terms of our relationship with Turkey. (…) …our political thinking around the whole foreign policy towards the region… in a situation where we have genuine grass-roots movements in the Middle East OR real democratic societies where the people in the region get to shape the direction their societies take…That’s the best way to prevent Terrorism in the end.

[1:38;08] How do we  get there? We stop (…?) regimes in the region. Which no one talks about. Why don’t we do that … We don’t want a genuine democracy in Egypt. If that happened, then the Egyptian people might choose not to be an ally of the United States anymore. These kind of questions (…?) how do we break that cycle and create a more peaceful Middle East.

Question #13- a man (1:38;55) What is your take on the Assad regime. Why it is that we did absolutely nothing to fight ISIS, even though ISIS destroyed four Divisions of Iraqi Troops ( …) Why we did nothing to rid this country (of ISIS)

Kundnani’s Response [1:39;28] Yes, the Syrian Regime. Mass  Human Rights Abuses the last few years, and going back much further to his father, killing whole civilian populations an entire towns. I would be delighted to see that regime over-thrown. He feels the end of that  regime will be part of how we bring about the end of ISIS. [1:40;02]

The reason the regime … [noise on mic for about 40 seconds as I prepare to leave. Obscuring words]  (sorry) The regime, how stupid ?… the perception that ISIS is the ONLY problem in Syria. The regime would be much ‘happier’ believing, convincing the world that he’s involved in a conflict (where he’s faced with this ??… ISIS… rather thinking these groups that are involved with …? Syrian regime. (?….?) [1:40;42]

From TSM: As I finish transcribing the Q and A, there has been ANOTHER ISIS BEHEADING. Sunday, November 16, 2014. “Abdul-Rahman” Kassig aka Peter Kassig. He converted (‘reverted’) to Islam. It didn’t save him. He had fought in Iraq in the U.S. military, and so for the Islamic State he was a “Crusader” and had to die. His grusome murder is part of a 16 minute video sent to the Social Networks. Kassig was murdered as part of a MASS beheading that included about a dozen Syrian soldiers.

Continuing with Kundnani’s comments regarding Syria and ISIS. ” So,that’s why the Assad Regime has been buying oil ISIS …? To the extent that … strategy…2003…don’t wind up with…in some way the hypocrisy of the last two years… Assad regime in the one hand…. on the other hand, the opposition… ? [wish I had gotten this statement…. I had now left the room and had mic noise interference-again)

Question #14 - man- (I was in the hallway) – Began by thanking Kundnani for giving  people this platform; to sit down and listen to you. “I’m a Muslim, a convert to Islam (8 years back) I’m  from India.  My parents are still Hindu..

END audio [1:42;19;00]

++
The Q and A was still going on after an hour. I quickly took a couple of cell-phone pics as I left the room. This is the best angle I could get of the clean-cut, ‘NYPL Dr.Kundnani’ vs the academic radical I found on-line.

IMG_2232Later, I found pictures of a completely different ‘look’ from Dr. Kundnani photo-3-iSeems this is his ‘rebel’ Kundnani, speaking to the Muslim student orgs.
1782047_10101879512199372_50976261_nSince beheadings are IN THE NEWS. I wold love to see Dr. Kundnani  encourage a dialogue that would focus on this question, 

“Is it ‘Islamophobic’ to oppose ‘beheadings?”

islamophobia-sf-bus

Our foreign policy should be guided by understanding and admitting the following realities:

  1. We are engaged in a war of ideas, with our principal enemy: an ideology.

An ideology that will not collapse out of economic incompetence.

  1. The ideology of the terrorists is religiously based and derived from Islam and its founding texts, the Koran, hadith, and the sunna, and the history of the early caliphate.
  2. One, but not the only way we know this, is because they tell us so.

End the Silence (before it’s too late)

++

“The Muslims Are Coming” Book-Lecture @ NYPL (10-16-14) AUDIO

“The Muslims are Coming:”Islamophobia, Extremism and the Domestic ‘War on Terror”.muslims-are-coming-book

On the evening of October 16, 2014, Dr. Arun Kundnani, the author, defended Islam from the accusation that it could in be, in any way, responsible for terrorism. This included a Q and A discussion (which can be found in a second blog-post)

Dr. Kundnani is an Adjunct Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University and terrorism studies teacher at John Jay College.

Library flier Scan adjusted“Based on several years of research and reportage from Texas and New York to Yorkshire, the New York based scholar tackles the growing Islamophobia in Britain and the United States.

arun(In the book)”Kundnani  gives a critique of counter-radicalization strategies, focusing  particularly on the surveillance of American Muslims and exposes the hypocrisy of the states fighting terror and their misguided attempts to stem the tide of radicalisation.”

Part One is the author’s presentation. Length of lecture was 45 minutes [approx]  Part Two – Q and A was one hour [approx.]

From The Silent Majority (TSM) : I transcribed the lecture as best I could. There were occasional spots where I couldn’t catch a word or phrase. I have indicated this with  (??… ??)

It BEGINS:

The librarian, NOT surprisingly, began with a reference to RACHEL MADDOW. Validating how important and timely this topic of Islamophobia has been made by a current program of Maddow’s.

Billed as “An important and moving investigation of the costs of the ‘war on terror’ for those who have been it’s target” (David Cole, author of Enemy Aliens: Double Standards and Constitutional Freedoms in the War on Terrorism)  [TSM - they used scare quotes for 'war on terror']

From the intro to Kudnani’s book, The Muslims Are Coming, Government is no longer imagining the threat (?) foreign terrorist sleepers living among ordinary American Muslims; now that the radicalization of ordinary Muslims themselves (??)

In support of this statement she refers to a Rachel Maddow podcast (MSNBC political talk show host) Regarding Maddow, ” Two weeks previous to this event, Maddow referenced a story where the FBI distributed a photo to the public of a mass terrorist, American- native born”. She feels this shows how the FBI tells us we should now FEAR ordinary Americans.

Referring to the reviews of the “Muslims are Coming” (on Islamophobia and the domestic War on Terror) the claim is made that the book is, “the most comprehensive study yet on how governments fight Terrorism on both sides of the Atlantic.” He took several years to research this book. He interviewed FBI agents working on counter-terrorism and .. ?? (1:58)

Dr. Kundnani teaches terrorism studies at John Jay college. He also wrote a book on The End of Tolerance: Racism in the 21st Century.arun-kundnaniKundnani BEGINS:

He said that he actually did some of the research for this book “here in this very building“. He briefly explains the motivation for the book.

The debate on  ? … ?? from the time Obama was elected, beginning of his first term, the debate about terrorism in the United States was starting  to look very different from how it did in the “Bush Years”. The “Bush Years’- very dramatic. highly critical debate. people talking about the Iraq war. torture. Abu Ghraib.

Under Obama: EVERYTHING WENT QUIET. at least for the first term. (He claims what happened) was that Obama normalized the War on Terror. (even if he wasn’t using that phrase any more) [4:25]

He suspected that the way we were doing Domestic Counter Terrorism in the United States was FLAWED; even discriminatory. Many of the assumptions being made in how we understand terrorism and what causes it, were misguided.

2010. Dr. Kundnani traveled the U.S. New York. Minnesota. Michigan. Texas. Virginia. Wash, DC.

Interviewed FBI agents working on counter terrorism with local police departments. Security Officials. Homeland Security. National Security Council in the White House. His goal: to get a sense of HOW they understood this counter-terrorism work that they were doing. The thinking behind it.

He also had interviews with COMMUNITY ACTIVISTS in Muslim Communities around the U.S. AND he interviewed a small number of people who actually were being accused and labeled as Islamic extremists. (to try to get an understanding of their stories as well) He spent a year doing this.

Kundnani traveled England doing similar interviews over there.(5:51) Book is mainly about U.S. This evening he was going to give us three personal stories that he wrote about. To give us a feel for the issues he wants us to think about.  (one of the stories -#2- is not in the book)

First story (6:29) Jesse  Curtis Morton - Interviewed 2011, shortly before he was arrested.threat23n-1-webYounus Abdullah Muhammad, aka Jesse Curtis Morton- (NY Daily News-June 22, 2012) A Muslim convert from Brooklyn was sentenced Friday to nearly 12 years in prison for posting online threats against the creators of the “South Park” television show and others he deemed enemies of Islam.

Morton (33 yrs old) founded the now-defunct Revolution Muslim  website. [9:03]

Morton’s site inspired a variety of would-be jihadis, including “Jihad Jane” Colleen LaRose; Antonio Benjamin Martinez, who plotted to bomb a military recruiting station; and Jose Pimental, who plotted to assassinate members of the U.S. military returning from Afghanistan and Iraq. He also corresponded with American al-Qaida member Samir Khan on writing an article for use as al-Qaida propaganda.

Morton’s prosecution was relatively novel under a law enacted in recent years that makes it a federal crime to use the Internet to place another person in fear of death or serious injury. Morton was arrested last year in Morocco, where he moved after Chesser’s arrest.

Morton and Zachary Chesser used the Revolution Muslim website to deliver thinly veiled threats against the creators of the “South Park” television show for perceived insults to the prophet Muhammad, by depicting him in a bear costume. (Chesser earlier received a 25-year sentence, but he also tried to travel to Somalia to join the al-Shabab terrorist group.)

Typically, Morton was well educated. He had a Masters Degree from Columbia. Reverts to Islam. Credits Islam for saving him from drug addiction. Becomes a drug abuse Councilor.

Spends time in Saudi Arabia where he encounters the same materialism that alienated him from US society. American commercialism was being imposed around the world. He wants to save the world from Western Capitalism. Revolutionary, anti-Globalist politics version of Islam; a religious conservatism.

His point made: This is very different from how most American Muslims think about religion.

(Morton) Claims they were not directly trying to incite violence but then they quoted Bin-Laden: “If there is no check in the freedom of your words, then let your hearts be open to the freedom of our actions.

QUESTION from author, Dr. Kundnani - What led him (Morton) to this radical form of Islam? Was it his abusive upbringing that produced his rage that was projected on to American Society as a whole? Was it to escape his drug addiction? A religious longing for a utopia where his life’s struggles could be redeemed?

Why did his ideological journey take the particular form that it did? The author’s attempt at an answer leads to the War on Terror and BUSH. Kundnani posits that Abdullah Morton’s own belief’s mirrored the War on Terror’s (fascist ??) civilization.

Did Morton accept on ‘face value’ the BUSH administration’s official narrative [12 :37] that Radical Islam is an existential threat to an American Society that he has come to despise. He gets his labels of Good and Evil from the Official War on Terror.

[FromThe Silent Majority: I have pictures on-file from 2008, when I captured the “Death to all Juice” poster in the hands of Carlos Almonte, the NJ Jihadi, who was convicted and sent to prison. Revolution Muslim (the organization) was there, at the same protest.]Continuing with Dr. Kundnani. He jumps (with no real conclusion) EXAMPLE, #2, which is not in the book. From Nation Magazine. [13:00]

An example of the FBI setting up a Muslim, with threats, to be an FBI Informant. Spying on fellow Muslims.  Ayyub Abdul-Alim from Springfield, Mass.  36 years old. He founded and ran the Quran and Sunnah Community Center that provided a meal service in Springfield and helped with prison visitations.ayyub-abdul-alim-2011jpg-c90f511856fd4889Abdul-Alim grew up in NYC. His father was a Black Panther, his mother a Puerto Rican Young Lord radical. He was raised as a Muslim. After he went to SAUDI ARABIA on a “three-week religious trip to Mecca”Abdul-Alim got repeated visits from the FBI, pressuring him to be an informant (which he refused.)

He wound up marrying a woman who, unbeknownst to him, turned out to be an FBI informant. [she was supposedly paid almost 12,000 by the FBI)

Abdul-Alim claims that when he was arrested on Dec. 9, 2011, the police placed a gun on him. This was then followed by a visit from the FBI. Pressured again to be an informant so he can avoid a possible 10 years in prison on trumped up charges. He chose to go to trial.

At his trial-Ayyub cleaned up “real good”-78f24388da0d5a80His trial was April of 2014.… In the post-9/11 era to recruit Muslim informants… He sought justice through the legal system and, as with every other post-9/11 case in which a Muslim in the United States has mounted an entrapment defense, was unsuccessful.

A black man with previous conviction (a 2003 conviction for cocaine trafficking) he was convicted again.This time he was found guilty of possession of ammunition without a license and possession of a firearm without a license.” 6 years. Police also say they found another bag of guns that are his and could add 10 years to his sentence.

Kundnani says THIS is an example of the FBI tactics used to recruit informants. The implication being that Abdul-Alim was framed. (17:14)

THIRD Story. Black Muslim from Detroit. [17:21]   Abdullah Luqman (also listed as Imam Luqman Abdullah) cmimg_12681A revert to Islam in the 1980′s was “murdered” by the FBI in October 2009. FBI characterized his group as “radicalized Sunni, Black Americans, looking to create a separate Islamic State, within the borders of the United States, governed by sharia law.”

Sympathized with al-Qaeda, viewed the US government as an oppressive government, and the Imam called on his followers to organize a protest against it. Members of Abdullah-Luqman’s mosque also carried guns.Imam-Luqman-Abdullah-speaks-on-behalf-of-Imam-Jamil-Al-Amin-in-2008Question asked by Kundnani, were they just small-time hustlers who were set-up by the FBI, who infiltrated the mosque and entrapped the Imam in a warehouse sting.imam-and-jabril2As he concludes his presentation, Kundnani’s claim that these cases are textbook examples of the taunting of people, not for their actions, but for their ideology, with agents and informants acting as provocateurs.

The FBI provides the plans for the alleged  terrorist plot, but also the means and opportunity. Supplying money and weapons, the accused would not have had the capability to carry out the plot. The FBI was able to manipulate vulnerable people.

Supposedly, WE (the FBI, etc) were actually fantasizing in to existence the very threat of Domestic Terrorism that we claimed to be fighting.

“The ONLY rationalizing in this case is the FBI’s OWN.”

“On both sides of the Atlantic, so-called terrorism experts,with theories of radicalization, claim to be able to identify those who may not be terrorists now, but will be at some later date.(23:23)

Kundnani ASKS,”How do you identify  tomorrow’s terrorist, today?”

He mentions Spielberg’s futurist film”The Minority Report, using the film as an allegory to debunk counter-terrorism within the United States right now.

He says of our own Security Officials,They  turn to Academic Mortals that claim scientific knowledge of a process by which ordinary Muslims are supposed to become terrorists. They CLAIM certain behavioral, cultural and ideological signals can reveal who is at risk to become a terrorist at some point in the future.”

They claim there are 4 stages on the way to becoming a terrorist:

1: Pre-radicalization
2. Identification (growing a beard, wearing Islamic clothing, alienated from   one’s former life)
3. Indoctrination (increased activity in a pro-Muslim group)
4. Action

Claiming that some form of religious ideology is the root-cause of terrorism.

In the last decade the government has spent MILLIONS of dollars TRYING to prove that there is some form of connection between religious ideology and terrorist violence.

Kundnani claims that “when studied rigorously“, as he has tried to do in his book “The Muslims are Coming”, these assumptions don’t actually stand up to scrutiny.” (he mentions again the film “The Minority Report”)

2008 the FBI had 15,000 paid informants. But, even though he admits he does not know how many were from the Muslim Community, he makes the claim that he finds it reasonable to assume there must have been at least 10,000 PAID informants of those 15,000 from the Muslim Community.

Their job, he says, was “to look for ‘warning’ signs of radicalization, not ‘suspected’ criminal activity.”

Mentioning, also, what he says is the “NYPD surveillance of every aspect of Muslim Life: mosques, restaurants, cafes and Muslim Student organizations; identified by the NYPD as ‘hot-spots’ NOT because there is any evidence of criminal activity, but based on their religious OPINIONS or expressing political opinions.

[NYPD THOUGHT Police-actions] where under-cover officers take NOTES on what people are talking about) From 2008-2012 NO criminal actions was revealed. [28:16]

Lost in the debate about having an informant in the (Muslim) community, is that this is way more pernicious in under-mining relationships of trust.

As government officials and the ‘so-called’ terrorist experts have repeatedly invoked this concept of radicalization, has become part of our everyday language. This had led to the situation where there is a wide-spread assumption now that the root-cause of terrorism lies in some kind of Islamic ideology.

Actually, this is NOT a particularly plausible way of thinking about TERRORISM…..we have this (?) reflex that links terrorism to Islamic belief. The evidence to support this is (surprisingly ?) weak.

 “Having a belief in (let’s call it) extremist Islam, or however you want to define that, does not correlate with involvement with terrorism” .  “A simple STATISTICAL fact”.

The many good reasons for objecting to reactionary interpretations of ‘religion’, but the idea that religious ideology (??) is causing terrorism, is not one of them. (30:00)

We see these ‘errors’ being made now in how we understand ISIS…we’ve totally misunderstood what’s led to its emergence…we’d  like to think that there’ s something called Islamic extremism which can be used to explain everything bad that Muslims do.”

Kundnani continues,  “The ‘reality’ is that it’s POLITICS not religious ideology that drives terrorist violence.

ISIS is the product not of religion but, POLITICAL decisions made by our allies,  Saudi Arabia, Turkey and by our own government. It’s a product of a legacy that we’ve created in (Iraq?…??) [30:47] shows how deeply we’ve held on to this myth, Islamic extremism. How quickly we’ve forgotten the lessons of the last Iraq War.”

[TSM- Bill Maher and his argument with Ben Affleck was mentioned next]

Bill Maher has this problem about Islam causing terrorism. Ben Affleck said that’s racist.” Kundnani says,This is a debate that has been playing out since at least 9-11.“.

Someone says, “Islam is a Religion of Peace, it’s not inherently violent. You have this minority who misinterpreted Islam in an extremist fashion.”

Kundnani says,This is a standard argument. Each side trades quotations from the Quran, out of context, which doesn’t really solve anything. We can ALL trade quotes from the Quran.”

The real meaning of this debate is not actually what each side says, but this hidden assumption that Islamic ideology is the KEY to understanding WHY terrorism happens [32:25]

The argument Kundnani makes in the book, “The Muslims are Coming”, is that Islamic ideology is largely irrelevant in trying to understand the causes of terrorism.

What we consider to be commonsense, is what we’ve been ‘told’ to believe by people we consider to be ‘authorities’ in this area. To systematically associate Islamic belief with terrorism, in this way, leads…to Islamophobia!” [32:57] A form of structural racism directed at Muslims.”

He now tells us more about his research for the book. About a town in Texas and a mosque. He tells us that he was in a restaurant in this town and that there was poster of a famous photograph of a lynching. He claims that instead of a black face, there was now a stereo-typical face of an Arab, with the caption, “Let’s play cowboys and Arabians.

Showing how such a poster connects a long history of racism in the United States (a reworking of racism) to Islamophobia (and the genocide of indigenous peoples in America and a reference to Jim Crown segregation-lynching.)

It’s also analogous to anti-Semitism . He mentions late 19th c Jewish conspiracy theories. Jews were turned in to sub-humans and yet at the same time, super-powerful people.

He claims this is the same structure we have now with Islamophobia; conspiracy theories and secret Muslims controlling the world and Sharia Law in the White House.

“This is NOT to imply to criticize Islamic Belief, it is somehow ‘racist’.

[36:47]  “What it means is that WE need to pay attention to opposing the kind of social and political processes by which Islamophobia is acted out in violent attacks on the street which we’ve seen increasing in the last few years in the U.S. [37:03]

All institutionalized in government profiling. Civil rights abuses.

[37:14] Looking at the official way that terrorism is understood, leads us to the role of government in foreign policy, fostering political context. This idea that we can blame terrorism on Islamic belief is convenient, it allows us to talk about religion and NOT politics, including the politics of our own government.

[37:40] Some terrorists may use religion to articulate their particular propaganda, but (he insists) it’s POLITICS that is the underlying cause (of terrorism)

EXAMPLE: Hamas uses religious language to legitimize its violence. Uses religious language to legitimize its cease-fires. (he insists) that this indicates (somehow) that it is NOT the religion that drives them to use violence, What’s driving its decisions is (Hamas’) assessment of the political context (Israeli ‘occupation) [38:16]

Claims THIS is consistent with the WHOLE history of terrorism of the last 150-200 years. Terrorism is DRIVEN by political content.

Example – assassins of the late 19th c- ‘working class movement‘ – takes over Paris – 10′s of thousands killed by the army – some of survivors say it is legitimate for us to use dynamite. Context creates that decision.

NEXT example- British- Catholics-Irish- violent conflict that unfolds for decades

SOUTH AFRICA- students protesting that their classes have to be taught in Afrikaans. Not their language. Students shot by the apartheid state. African National Congress resorts to bombs in retaliation. He claims this is a pattern that repeats itself.

Kundnani jumps to 2003 to 2006 (2009) a dramatic surge in terrorism. It is the process that we need to understand.

Their ideology hasn’t change from moderate to extremist Islam. What’s changed is being exposed to the NEWS of 100′s of thousands of people dying. We are in a cycle of violence. BUT, we ONLY see the violence of OTHERS.

Quotes Brendan Behan (to paraphrase) the guy with the big bomb is the government ( little bomb – the terrorist). He claims, that Government violence is always seen as normal, necessary, rational. [42:19]

In actual fact, both forms of violence FEED each other in this cycle of war and murder. Words. Terrorism. Extremism. Radicalization. encourage us to seek only half an evaluation.

[42:39] He now claims to quote Dr Martin Luther King (1967) King said as he spoke to the angry young men across the country about a non-violent approach to protesting American racism, he felt like a hypocrite.

He could never raise his voice against the violence and oppressed in the ghettos, without speaking clearly against the greatest purveyor of violence IN THE WORLD, “my OWN government”. (Kundnani refers here to the Viet Nam war)

Kundnani’s conclusion: Violence is NOT just about the Angry Young Men, it’s about the Governments. They both feed each other.

That point is as valid today as it was then in the War Against Terror. Ground strikes, bombings and the way we entrap people within the United States itself, and put them in prison for decades, for the opinions they hold. [End of presentation 44:01]

End Part One – The Presentation
++
The next post : Part Two is The Q and A. The audience now had a chance to ask questions of Dr. Kundnani.  Some even dared to ask him for comments regarding the recent beheadings .

TSM asks: Is it ‘Islamophobic’ to oppose ‘beheadings”??

islamophobia-sf-bus++

 

 

 

March against Capitalism: Shut DOWN the World Business Forum. SHUT DOWN AMERICA!(10-08-14)pics/vids

Yes, I am “On Delay”. October 8, 2014. Posting this article way after the anti-Capitalista protests. It was a “Two-in-One” day event. After spending way too much time with the Hard-Core Commie Left, I ‘tabled’ my post (til now)

November 5, 2014
Woke up. Feeling Good. Hopeful.
A GREAT Day for America.

article-front-1105
Then “Reality Check” kicked-in.
This SCUM will NEVER stop working to “Take America Down”.
Time to revisit the Anti-Capitalista Protest March.
noon commies half cropThe Players were, as always, the ‘Progressive’/ Soc/Commie/Anarchists
W
ho NEVER met a tyrannical despot they didn’t LOVE.
  A Full Day of  “Fun with Anarchy”
EVIL is GOOD
‘Out-Reach’ to the passers-by.
NOON. Lunch Time and a heavy dose of agitprop
Columbus Circle was a quiet presentation.
4 PM – NOT so quiet. VERY loud putsch-like speeches filled the air.
(BTW- it was also October 8th – not the 7th)
Droning. Over and over (and over) -  Protest against Capitalism.
Some quotes from their face book page and flyer.
Shut DOWN the World Business Forum!
Rise up against the global 1%!
March against capitalism and the World Business Forum.

“The keynote speaker of this year’s conference, former Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke, is one of the key ruling class figures who organized the trillions of dollars of bailouts for banks and corporations in 2007.”
 “Global capitalism is in a period of prolonged crisis.”

“While the wealthy 1% meet in New York to plan their continued domination of the world, we are calling on a mass mobilization of the people against the criminal system of capitalism.”
“Capitalism has nothing for us.”
“No living wage jobs, no quality education, no affordable healthcare, no peace and no future.”
“We call on a new generation of activists to take on the call for a revolution, to overthrow capitalism and the rule of the 1%…
… and replace it with the rule of the people.”Sponsored by: FIST – Fight Imperialism, Stand Together, Party of Communists, Socialist Alternative, Workers World Party

VIDEOS NEXT -The TRUTH Takes a HIKE” Outside the World Business Forum – Radio City Music Hall- NYC. They just make this shiz up.Gotta keep the ‘People’ agitated.Part 1 video - Larry Holmes (International Action Center) introduces his IAC assistant, “I -Feel-The Love”, K.T. Knowles followed by Maoist Press TV Reporter, Caleb Maupin. But, the fluttery KT Knowles, Larry Homes’ assistant, was particularly ‘winning;  “shivering” with all that ‘Love’

Next VIDEO is later in the protest (Part 6): Earlier the cops made me go ‘inside their pen’ to film. That’s all I was doing. Filming. Like everyone else. Later, as Larry Holmes of Ramsey Clark’s International Action Center, starts to introduce his partner in crime, Sara Flounders, the very unsubtle decision is made have her faithful Commie Lapdog, Bill Doares, stop me from filming her speech.
.
Worth noting, this type of censorship is how they shut down any and all public discourse in our colleges and schools. Doares does his usual bullying. Shoving me and mauling my camera as he repeated (in front of the police) “WE DON’T WANT YOU HERE. Leave!”
.
Commies. As INTOLERANT as our new 2nd term Governor, Andrew “Conservatives aren’t welcome in New York” Cuomo.
PLAY LIST of all 8 VIDEOS. An opportunity to listen to the mindless Words. Words. Words. used to lure so many tools to their coven. (you can skip Part 1 if you’ve already watched it)
 
FLASH FORWARD to November 4, 2014. A NEW day has dawned on AMERICA. The FIGHT BACK against The Left has begun! But, not just at the ballot box. There are many fronts in this war. (Quotes from a timely article from Daniel Greenfield follow)The Leftist and Islamic War on the Family

“The greatest threat to the totalitarian state is the family.

Liberalism however destroys the family to create helpless individuals looking for the next handout. The protégé of the nanny state is a coward. He is eager to join mobs, but does nothing as an individual. He creates nothing, and therefore has nothing to lose except his material possessions which he uses as gateways to the ‘fun’ that consumes his life. He is capable of violence, but only when he has numbers on his side.”photo 2“When families die, human beings begin reverting to a feral state. The inability to sustain family leads to the collapse of civilization. Liberalism and Islam both feed off the social failures that they manufacture.”

photo 3“Liberalism and Islam both perpetuate the crises that keep them going through dysfunction. They can only thrive by maintaining a constant supply of unhappy people who have lost the ability to live fulfilling and meaningful lives. The biggest threat to their empires and caliphates of dysfunction is a strong family.”

Wherever the anarchists go, we must go.

welcomed in our colleges
they meet. greet. teach. preach.
woo the impressionable
intimidate (threaten)
They WRITE the books (our text books)
TRAIN our media (our teachers)
burrowed deep in to the soul of our country.
bereft of independent thought. freedoms lost.
The gullible follow. BUT we do NOT.
WE will NO LONGER BE SILENT!

November 4-5, 2014
The FIGHT is ON!

10368251_10204037647395127_487141283848069303_n

For the rest of the pictures, there are two slide shows.

Slide Show #1 at Columbus Circle

Slide Show #2 at Radio City

++

“The Murder of Leon Klinghoffer” Met Opera Premiere & the 100-Wheelchair Caravan Protest

October 20, 2014. NYC. 100 wheelchair caravan protest outside the Metropolitan Opera.


The press conference began at 5 PM. There was LOTS of press. The media came out to watch, listen, film, take pictures, even though they did not intend to abandon the approved PC narrative defending The “Death’ of Leon Klinghoffer as ART.

Anti-Semitic ‘art’ is A-OK when done by the LEFT. They can OFFEND.

WE are expected to be SILENT (otherwise) … we might ‘offend’…

Part One Slide show is of the crowd, the wheelchairs and the signs. The crowd was calm but determined, standing firm for hours across from the Met. Listening. Cheering. Protesting. SILENT NO MORE!

The speakers were fabulous. All speaking out in opposition to the OFFENSIVE and boldly anti-Semitic ‘opera’ debuting at the Met this night. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was the keynote speaker.
Other major speakers  included Congressman Peter King (R) who currently serves as Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Counter-terrorism and Intelligence and formerly served as Homeland Security Chairman, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, Former NY Governor David Paterson, Criminal Defense Attorney Ben Brafman, Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, ZOA President, Morton Klein, Congressman Eliot Engel and NY State Assemblyman, David Weprin AND many, many more.

Part TWO Slideshow is of the speakers.

NEXT is the the Video playlist of ALL the speakers, representing a cross-section of religion and politics. No dainty versions of the truth. Honest. Sobering. Thoughtful speeches. Intense, yet, inspiring. Clearly, we can NO LONGER “Make Nice”, trying not to offend, with the hope of “keeping the peace”.  We must NOT REMAIN SILENT.

NEVER AGAIN Means NEVER AGAIN.

We are ALL Leon Klinghoffer!

**

 

Global Anti-Semitism: A Threat to International Peace & Security – United Nations (9-8-14)

UN houses, but does not sponsor, anti-Semitism conference

September 8, 2014 - The United Nations- NYC
UN-flag Conference on “Global Anti-Semitism: A Threat to International Peace and Security”
According to the World Zionist Organization, since the recent Israel-Hamas conflict there has been more than a 400-percent rise in anti-Semitic incidents in Europe. In South America and South Africa, anti-Semitic incidents have spiked 1,200 and 600 percent, respectively. In the U.S., such incidents are up 127 percent.

The conference was co-organized by the UN Permanent Mission of Palau and the Engr Aja Eze Foundation.
Attendance to this historic event was free. The place was packed.
The hall was packed!

On the third floor of the United Nations, just two doors down from the Security Council, more than 500 people gathered  on September 8, 2014,  for a conference on the rise of anti-Semitism. For some, the location was a touch ironic … it wasn’t the UN that decided to address the threat global anti-Semitism posed to international peace and security… it was the UN Permanent Mission of Palau and the Aja Eze Foundation that sponsored the lunchtime conference.

Energy. Intense. Positive.
Serious. Purposeful. Supportive.
The speakers explained how the rising tide of anti-Semitism, if not stopped, will have a catastrophic effect on the safety and security of the world.
A thought-provoking afternoon. Rather than just post a podcast, I decided to post the entire audio with stills that I took during the Conference. I encourage you to listen to each speaker .
  In Two-Parts (total is 1 hour 45 minutes): Ms. Ugoji Eze Esq, President of the Eng Aja Eze Foundation, a non-profit organization focusing on the rebuilding of societies following conflicts, was the moderator
Please Note:  Listing of the time code after each speaker’s name to locate them more easily

PART ONE VIDEO

Part One Video Begins with Opening statements by Ms. Ugoji Eze Esq. (00:00 to 1:35)

Next up : H.E. Dr. Caleb Otto – Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Palau to the United Nations.(1:36-4:45) “Palau is a Christian nation,” said Dr Otto and God has said, “I will bless those who bless Israel, and curse those who curse Israel,” noted Otto. “Speaking up against anti-Semitism and defending Israel is  a matter of practicing our faith.”
H.E. Mr. Ron Prosser- Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations. (4:46 – 17:02) Ambassador Prosor gave a FABULOUS Speech in which he encouraged those present  to  “speak up against anti-Semitism” and instead of demonizing Israel, to “stand with democratic nations that believe in human rights, tolerance, and freedom” .
Followed by the two Keynote speakers:
Ms. Brigitte Gabriel, CEO of ACT for America, “Tolerating Hatred is Not an Option” (17:05 – 30:46)

Mark Langfan, Arutz Sheva UN Correspondent/Security Analyst. (31:11 – 56:03)

” A Strategic Review of Threats to Israel” (presentation with slides)

“There is no better place in the world to hold a anti-anti-Semitism conference than the United Nations, HQ. It’s a vital forum to fight this resurging scourge,” said Langfan who presented his graphic slides that illustrated the strategic dangers to Israel and the world.

END PART ONE VIDEO
++
PART TWO – VIDEO

PART TWO VIDEO Begins with Pastor Mario Bramnick, Chief Liaison for Israel and the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference: “The Root Causes of the Current Rise of Global Anti-Semitism”. (00:29 – 13:43 ) He said, “ There has never been a meeting on anti-Semitism like this in the halls of the U.N.”


Ms Anne Bayesky
, Director Touro Institute on Human Rights: ” The United Nations and Anti-Semitism”(14:01 – 20:36 ) She made an important point for us ALL to remember, “The perversion of the legal system is how a Holocaust begins.”

The final speaker before a short Q and A was Dr. Michael Llorenz
, Professor Touro College Graduate School of Business, “Entrepreneurship: A Tool to Social Integration”  (20:56 – 35:33) This, too, was a powerful a speech.

Dr. Llorenz posted a comment at Algemeiner I felt compelled to share. So eloquent. Passionate. Determined to make a difference. In spite of the United Nations blatant anti-Semitism!

Professor Michael Llorénz

Dear Editors:
Thank you for conveying the message of my speech at the United Nations last Monday. Too often, those of us who Israel stand on the sidelines and wait for someone else to act. Most often, fiery rhetoric substitutes for effective action.
You may know what impelled me to agree to speak and to help with the historic event that we experienced on Monday.

Hashem is not the God of coincidence. These Recommendations I made are part of a larger strategy that I prepared as a response to two questions asked of me at a book signing where a frustrated colleague who knew that I had successfully aided other communities and institutions to address their complex difficulties. “Israel and Jews are in trouble. Why don’t you come up with something to help?” I was surprised as the person walked away. A little later, Dr. Donne Kampel, founder and chair of the Women’s Leadership Council introduced me to the Barrister Ugoji Eze, CEO of the Aja Eze Foundation that produced the program at the United Nations. She asked me what could be done to help Israel and to reduce anti-Semitism in the United States. It was a curiosity that two persons would ask me similar question within perhaps an hour and a half.

This time, I responded. My answer took perhaps twenty minutes inclusive of analysis, alternatives, and recommendations. She then told me she wanted me to speak at an anti-Semitism program that she was going to produce at the United Nations. I smiled, then agreed. Having been for five years the Principal Accredited Representative at the UN of one the largest NGOs in the world and having presented before the Fourth Committee, I was cogently aware of the sentiments of many of the key actors. Hence, I had difficulty imagining such a thing taking place. Yet, who would imagine that that the two of us who earned law degrees from English universities, she of African father and a British Jewish mother, and I, an American of Cuban heritage and some Jewish ancestry, would be blessed with the support of Ambassador Otto of Palau and later be joined by like-minded persons to make this historic program take place. Barrister Eze demonstrated prescient leadership.

Since my speech, I have had numerous requests to help apply practical and substantive ways to address anti-Semitism. I shall do my best to help.

This is a story of Hashem’s people doing His will.

Thank you again.
Michael Llorenz

Lastly,  Short Q and A (35: 34 – 45:43) and Final Remarks by Ms. Ugoji Eze Esq. (45:45 -47:40)

END PART TWO VIDEO
Final Thoughts:
I had never been to the United Nations. Held no interest for me. But, the seriousness of this conference pulled me in. Very glad I went. Post-Conference:
Had a sandwich in the cafeteria overlooking the East River (Where they CHARGE you 10 cents to use a TRAY)

Took some pictures as I wandered the halls from the third floor to the first. (lots of glitter and gold items that were donated by RICH oil emirates)


And one obnoxious set of panels that greeted the conferees as they exited the third floor elevator on the way to the Global Anti-Semitism Conference (SURELY this was NO accident)
Our exit from the building, after this spectacular conference, was made even more meaningful when these OBNOXIOUS PANELS were turned AWAY from the Exit.  Go Team!
From this:

To this

Sweeeet…..

VIDEO OF THE OBNOXIOUS Fake History “Palestinian” PANELS and their “Fate”:

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SLIDESHOW of pictures:

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Unless there is another groundbreaking Conference like this one on September 8, Doubt seriously I will ever go back to the U.N.

(Buh-bye)
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“Climate Change” Junk-Science March (2014) pics/video

What the left calls science is really a hypothesis accepted as a fact without the skepticism.

Its intelligence is a conclusion without bothering to determine whether it’s true.

 To be smart is to be left and to be left is to be smart.

And only stupid people would question that

Science and skepticism are the tools of stupid people.


As Socrates put it,

“I know that I know nothing.

We have the most to fear from the smart people who don’t know and will never admit how little they know.”

Tools, Fools & Junk-Science Majors came out to play in the streets of Manhattan (CREATING Traffic Jams & POLLUTION – cough cough,GAG!)

Joined by OWS lost Souls.

Hippies-Dippies, Past …

And Future–Past…

They wrestle with the conundrum: How to SAVE OUR Planet from PEOPLE!Leftists agendas “under-cover”… behind lovely smiles…

Pursuing “Climate Justice” FOR the Earth

Misguided “Do-Gooders” like the UJA & Jewish Climate ChangeMulti-Faith Religions paying homage to Mother Earth.

Christians and Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs ….

Worshiping The Sun. A Rock. Dirt. (Rain Clouds) aka :  The “CLIMATE”. Noah’s Ark representing : THE “Climate” !

A mosque/mineret representing ‘Diversity Amongst Fools”.

Come together as “ONE-World”

To SAVE “Mother Earth”!

Bubble-heads.

Feel-good automatons.

Pathetic Babblers, with colorful signs and banners, who walked a mile (or two) for “Climate Justice.”
They teach this Chicken-Little Dogma as FACT in our schools (with OUR silence as a Blessing)

UNIONS (health, academic & transit); Multi-media (news media of all types and stripes), Entertainment (music, movies, TV), Education Machine (colleges, textbooks, teachers) and government officials too numerous to name.

Independent-thinking neutered. No Questions Allowed. They EMBRACE their stupidity.

SAVE PLANET EARTH ( but you can kill the babies) Mother Earth is Wounded (but murdering Christians in Africa and the Middle East does not compute).

CLIMATE JUSTICE for ROCKS (that are used to STONE the innocent) to them, THAT makes sense.

THIS guy was out-front with his racism but, FLEE?
(Perhaps he should rethink this)

While the impoverished  of the WORLD yearn for the benefits of coal and gas
These tools “Say NO to Coal”

NO To Fracking
While the Third World wants to SUCCEED through the Free Market, these hard-core Leftist ‘do-gooders’ STRIVE to Destroy it.
Say NO To Wall Street !

SAY NO TO EVERYTHING “GOOD and Safe and Just”.

Environmental disasters aren’t caused by capitalists or communists. They are caused by people who don’t think about the consequences of their actions.

“UnF*#ck the World”? (Yeah. That’s the Ticket)

Environmental disasters created in the name of the environment are a reality as the same inflexible collectivist bureaucracies that wrecked the environment for industrial Socialism are wrecking it all over again for eco-Socialism.

VIDEO:

The combination of rigid ideology, bureaucratic guidelines and experts with no real life experience led to droughts and floods in the USSR and the PRC. Now the same combination of big plans, clueless experts and mindless slogans are creating droughts and floods in the US and the EU.

Part 1 slideshow

A factory owner can recognize a toxic waste spill. A Socialist is incapable of recognizing that his ideology’s plan caused a spill.

He will deny that it exists, denounce the witnesses, accuse critics of waging war on his ideology and then spend the next twenty years making it worse.

Part 2 slideshow

The planet doesn’t need saving from capitalists. It needs saving from Socialists… Capitalism without responsibility, human rights or independent points of views. And the left is determined to recreate these same environmental disasters in the name of the environment.

Want (NEED) some electricity?

Just ride your “Bicycle-to-No-Where” to Power -Up.

This is PROGRESS?
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Thousands Protest Klinghoffer Snuff Opera – Metropolitan Opera – Vids & pics

A PROTEST Rally was led by the Coalition Against Kinghoffer Opera outside the Metropolitan Opera

Opening Night of the Metropolitan Season. September 22, 2014 – NYC -

The Metropolitan’s Season will  include this Anti-American, Anti-Jewish, Anti-Israel, Pro-Terrorist SNUFF Opera, ” The MURDER of Leon Klinghoffer”

548More appropriate title should be. ” The MURDER of Leon Klinghoffer“…  Leon Klinghoffer didn’t just die… SHAME ON PETER GELB

Thousands came out to protest the Snuff opera. They gathered on both sides of the Avenue and managed to have a presence on the Plaza as well.

Even though  attempts were made to confine the massive gathering to one location across from the opera…the protest peacefully but with determination spread out ( before, during AND AFTER)

The Official Protest ended at 6 PM. but many stayed on with signs and flyers to greet those attending the Opening Night of the opera season.

Demanding this Snuff Opera be removed from the season.

Important questions were asked of the media as well, “WHO is FUNDING this Terrorist Opera?”

There were many speakers. Please watch them all in the 3-part videos below. (Videographer, Pamela Hall)

Part 1 Video  [Please watch videos in HD for best quality]

Speakers listed in order:  Introductory remarks, Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, David Weprin, Laurie Cardoza-Moore, Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, NYPD Detective Steven McDonald and Debra Burlingame.

Part 2 – Video

Speakers listed in orderTony LoBianco, Richard Allen, Bill Donohue, Bruce Blakeman, Sarri Springer,Wendy Laski, Consolee Nishemwe, Dr. Paul Brody reading a letter from Judea Pearl, Former Attorney General, Michael Mukasey and Congressman Eliot Engel.

Part 3 – Video

Speakers listed in order: Rabbi Avi Weiss, Dov Hikind, 3 students:Hannah Cohen, Ben Kahn, Ari Brandspigel (student council president DRS Yeshiva H.S.), Gov, George Pataki, Charles Asher Small, Rabbi Steven Burg (Simon Wiesenthal Center), Rabbi Zev Freidman, Richard Allen, MK Nissim Ze’ev, Mort Klein, Devorah Halberstam, Beth Gilinsky and Helen Freedman.

There are two side shows of pictures. First slideshow is the Speakers-

Second slideshow is the crowd and also a few pictures across the avenue in the Lincoln Center Plaza-

Wrapping up with a few more observations on the protest.

First from Lori Lowenthal Marcus at the Jewish Press here

And finally, from writer, Jack Kemp:

“One of the lines in this anti-semitic opera is: “wherever poor people are gathered they can find Jews getting fat. America is one big Jew.”  So who is this “exploiter Jew,” the one that Peter Gelb, the director of the Metropolitan Opera and himself a Jew whose father was a New York Times Managing Editor, allows to be denigrated on his stage?
.
Leon Klinghoffer was born a poor Jew from the Lower East Side, a man who invented an electric mini-grill you could also wash in your sink, an early predecessor of the current George Forman Grill. I recall one of these mini-grills in my home as a child in the 1950s. From this, Mr. Klinghoffer was able to create jobs for a number of people in manufacturing and sales and to support his family.
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Marty Peretz, writing in the New York Observer,  states that:
“John Adams can work his clunky, chunky music to his heart’s content. And so I suppose can Alice Goodman work her poetry. Ms. Goodman was born a Jew. She is now an Anglican priest, serving the Church of England, first as chaplain at Trinity College, Cambridge, latterly at a group of parishes near the university. The truth is that it is not Mr. Adams’ music that is at the core of the controversy. It is Ms. Goodman’s words. She is no free spirit in this church, which has been fighting with the Jewish nation and the British Jewish community for decades. “
This so-called opera is actually a sophisticated attack by wealthy, cosmopolitan Jews on a self-made New York Jew with limited education who had the audacity to make something of his life.” [End Jack Kemp]
.
Never Again Means  NEVER AGAIN!

Join the Coalition on October 20. Opening night of the actual opera: “The Death MURDER of Leon Klinghoffer”

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