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What Obama & Biden's Middle East negotiators could learn from prior American & Israeli diplomats

Where Netanyahu and Trump teams were went right on stabilizing the Middle East

At the recent Republican Jewish Coalition leadership meeting in Las Vegas, Brian Hook (former Senior Advisor to Secretaries of State in the Trump administration)  and Israel's U.S. Ambassador Ron Dermer reveal why Trump's Iran & Middle East policies were so vital - and how the Biden Democrat administration can keep from messing it up again.

RJC Chair Norm Coleman; Iran expert, Brian Hook; and Israel's former US Amb. Ron Dermer



During the Trump Administration, Brian Hook served as Senior Advisor to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Senior Advisor to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, U.S. Special Representative for Iran, and Director of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff. He was a key official on the team that negotiated peace agreements between UAE-Israel, Bahrain-Israel, Sudan-Israel, and Morocco-Israel, known collectively as the Abraham Peace Accords.

Transcribed from taped discussion: Brian Hook: "When we (Republican administration) were in office we inherited the Iran nuclear deal. Which, I think, you know many of our partners in the region who then later made peace with Israel - Bahrain and U. A. E. - thought this was a betrayal.

And when American foreign policy doesn't stand with our friends and deters our adversaries, a lot of bad things happen. And so we reversed that policy. We decided to stand with Israel, stand with our Gulf partners, deter and counter Iran, and it was very hard to do that inside the Iran deal because you can't touch the oil! Oil is the lifeblood of the Iranian regime and under the (Democrats') Iran nuclear deal you can't sanction their oil! You can't sanction their their petro-chem, you can't sanction metals...  John Kerry was essentially acting as the president of the Tehran Chamber of Commerce! 

That's what the (Democrats') deal does to you!  It makes you a champion of the Iranian economy. Which is the banker for Hezbollah, Hamas, P.I.J., and all sorts of terrorist activity around the world. President Trump understood, uniquely, that in order for us to have leverage over this regime, we have to get out of the deal.

We got out of the deal and then we were able to take, you know, Iran is 3% of the world's oil supply. That's $50 billion dollars a year in revenue- the oil! When we came into office, they were at 2.7 Million barrels of oil a day and we took them down to 70,000 barrels! And when you do that, the downstream consequences are magnificent because it causes Hassan Nasrallah to have to do fundraising-drives because his banker is out of money. It puts Hamas on an austerity budget. 

I think getting, look, the deal also has already started expiring. When we were in office, the arms of the U. N. Arms Embargo expired. The deal's gonna keep expiring, There really is no deal left to join. So I'm a little baffled by the whole theory of the case. And I'll close on at least on this part of Iran. A successful Iran policy needs just a couple of components. You have to have maximum economic pressure; The credible threat of military force to defend our interests; Diplomatic isolation, and Standing with the Iranian people who really do hate this regime. And so those are the four pieces and if you have that in place you can really, I think achieve some pretty significant results."

Former Israeli Amb to US Ron Dermer reveals the problems of the Biden regime's policy towards Iran nuclear weaponizing. (Filmed on Shabbat, Amb. Dermer's observing Orthodox Judaism precludes him from using a microphone).

R.J.C. Nat'l Chairman Sen. Norm Coleman
Sen. Norm Coleman, R.J.C. chairman:

"President Trump took a lot of grief for canceling pulling us out of the Iran deal. In fact, I had a conversation at breakfast one time with General Mattis, US Secretary of Defense, who was telling me what a disaster would be for Israel if we pulled out of the the the J. C. P. O. A.  Talk to us about the regional context of what that deal originally, how it impacted Israel the region. Talk about pulling out and talk about where we should go next. "

Amb. Ron Dermer:  "First thing, before I answer your question about Iran, I want to say something about my colleague, Brian. Now Brian was a Special Envoy dealing with Iran and he also was intimately involved in the Abraham Accords. He's the only person in the administration who's dealing with both issues - who I dealt with on a day-to-day basis on both issues. Brian Hook today has a security detail on him. Now, former presidents have a security detail, former vice-presidents have a security detail, occasionally a former Secretary of State has a security detail. It is, I think, unprecedented that a Special Envoy - after the end of an administration - has a security detail on him. And the reason he has a security detail on him is that, day after day in his job, he confronted the enemies of America and the enemies of Israel. And I think we should all show him a deep debt of gratitude!  [Applause and standing ovation].

Now I want to remind people why the Iran deal was so dangerous and why it remains dangerous today. And why the decision of President Trump, in my view - Senator Cruz said it yesterday I agree with him. It was the most important foreign policy decision that Pres. Trump made - to pull out of that Iran deal!  [Applause]

The Iran deal does not block Iran's path to a bomb. That's what was said in 2015 - it was a lie then and it's a lie today. It paves Iran's path to a bomb because the restrictions it puts in place are automatically removed in about 10 to 15 years. And in those two words automatically removed you understand why Israel was opposed to this deal. Because 10 or 15 years, as Prime Minister Netanyahu said in his speech to Congress, that's a long time in the life of politics but it's a blink of an eye in the life of a nation. We are over six years beyond the nuclear deal and everybody's talking about going back. What would going back do? Well, right now they say "well Iran is closer to getting a nuclear bomb" right?

Because it's three months away from having the fissile material. So let's go back into the deal and let's move a few months back. All you do is take two steps back so that in a few years Iran will have no breakout time to a bomb!
In year 12, the breakout time of the nuclear deal - that's 2027 year twelve.  In 2027, the breakout time - which is defined as acquiring the fissile material necessary for a bomb - the breakout time is close to zero! And those are not my words - those are the words of former President Obama in a moment of candor on NPR radio where he said, "In year 12, the breakout time will be close to zero." We cannot accept a deal that would be a glide path for Iran which vows to destroy the State of Israel, and works every day to destroy the State of Israel and leads chants of  "Death to America" and "Death to Israel" we cannot allow them a glide path to nuclear weapons! That's why it has to be opposed.
Now in addition to that, not only did it not solve the nuclear problem it created a much worse regional problem. Because it it fueled Iran's campaign of conquest and carnage throughout the Middle East by allowing them (as Brian said) to sell oil on the financial markets! That's the big money of the deal!

The big money was not that signing bonus and people argued 'is it $50 billion - is it $100 billion?' 

What Brian said is right - every single month, Iran was getting another $4-5 Billion dollars. And it wasn't using that money to establish a G.I. Bill for returning members of the Revolutionary Guard! [Laughter]
  It was doing this to fuel its aggression in Iraq, in Syria, in Lebanon, in Yemen, in Gaza! 

And that's why the decision was so important. But just remember the timeline: 
President Trump refused to re-certify the deal in October 2017. It took about 10 months. Then it was another eight months or so before he decided to withdraw from the deal which was May '18. But there were still waivers on the sale of oil at that time and it was allowing Iran to sell 1,000,000 barrels a day!

It was only in May 2019 when those waivers were removed -  that you actually had maximum pressure on Iran and as Brian said, within a few months you took them from 2.8 3 million barrels a day to a couple hundred thousand barrels a day - it's a huge shift! And it was drying up their resources. So Iran only faced maximum pressure for a year and a half.  But they had a lifeline - and the lifeline was that every single person who was running for president on the other side of the aisle was telling them "we are going to go back into this deal." Instead of actually standing with that decision and showing to the Iranians that no matter who you're going to elect here in the United States we're going to continue this maximum pressure policy, they did the opposite and they said basically 'Help is on the way!'

And now we find ourselves in a situation where the Iranians are not even willing to go back into the deal because you know what they think? They're going to get an even better deal from this administration and it's a very dangerous situation the United States should do exactly what Brian said -  you need a credible military threat - without that diplomacy will not work. You need to keep maximum economic pressure. And the third element which Brian also mentioned - is you have to reach out to the people of Iran. They are not your enemy, they are not Israel's enemy, they are the enemy of that regime.

They have virtually no support from the outside world and I hope that in Congress and other American leaders and other leaders around the world will reach out directly to the Iranian people because they're our hope if we're going to avoid a potential military confrontation. We might have to move in that direction there might be no choice. And I hope that whomever is sitting in the Prime Minister's chair in Israel will make the decision that they have to make in order to secure the Jewish future. Thank you!"
Sen Norm Coleman:  "One more question on Iran, as a segue to the Abraham Accords. In many ways could one argue that that by doing the original JCPOA in which they didn't tell the Israelis negotiating with Iran, didn't tell the Saudis that they were negotiating with Iran. Obama told the Saudis that you've got to learn to live with Iran in the neighborhood. That's like telling a family of of six kids they've got to learn to live with the pedophile who's living next door to them. Please talk to me about Iran's malign activities and talk to me about how that kind of kind of fits in to then coming together and ultimately achieving one of the greatest achievements of oury time which really is the Abrahamic Accords. Ambassador Dermer, I'll turn to you first... "
(Continues in video):

Remembering Kristallnacht - Holocaust Museum L.A.

A Zoom webinar from Holocaust Museum - L.A.
During the night of November 9, 1938, violent anti-Jewish pogroms broke out across Germany and its incorporated territories including Austria. Nazi officials concealed the organized nature of the attack in which mobs desecrated synagogues, vandalized Jewish-owned businesses, murdered 91 Jews, and sent 30,000 Jewish men to concentration camps. 

As a nationwide, brutal mass attack on Jews simply based on their ethnicity, Kristallnacht was a significant turning point in the Holocaust. 

Join us to hear from German Holocaust survivor Paul Kester, historian Dr. Alan Steinweis, author of “Kristallnacht 1938,” and Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Los Angeles Stefan Schneider to mark the anniversary. 

Click to register: Tuesday 9 November  - 6pm E.T/5pm C.T./4pm M.T./3pm P.T.

Rabbi Meir Kahane remains a target for those who do not understand him - 31-years after assassination by NYC's W.T.C.-bombing crew

Op-ed by Meir Jolovitz in Israel National News

He was a radical. And anti-establishment And he hated to see the Jew as victim after the bitter memory of a Holocaust when too few acted.

As part of the prepublicity for the most recent of a series of books that have been written during the past thirty-five years about Rabbi Meir Kahane, Internet sites dedicated to Israeli or Jewish affairs offered their readers a new invective, a preview of what I consider an academic diatribe. Three decades after the murder of the controversial rabbi, it seems transparent that the intent was to disparage and disgrace the man and his memory. In doing so, the truth fell victim. The truth about Kahane. And “Kahanism.”

The most recent manifestation of several previous studies of this type was the release of Shaul Magid’s Meir Kahane: The Public Life and Political Thought of an American Jewish Radical. The Dartmouth College professor, who is also affiliated with the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America, presents us with a 296-page assault on a man whose place in modern Jewish history will long outlive all the attempts at armchair psychiatry.

Magid targets a reading audience which knows neither the real history of radical Jewish politics of the 1960s, 70s and 80s America, nor of the nationalist politics in Israel from 1970 through 1990. His study – of a man and his impact – offers a portrait that works only if one is unaware of the political, social, and psychological dynamics that fueled that generation of political activists – and their movement.

This work, to my mind, contains historical mistakes, non-facts written as facts. Space prohibits a detailed cross-examination which would expose research whose conclusion was already know, but the author describes what he sees as historic facts in such a manner that any reasonable reader will see how they corroborate his thesis.

Rabbi Meir Kahane was a radical. He was anti-establishment. But he also hated to see the Jew as victim. And he employed the bitter memory of a Holocaust that raged when too few acted. He too-often saw the world as black and white, and he responded accordingly, and angrily. He became the resident militant rabbi against an American backdrop whose landscape had become politically-charged. True, True, And true. In the face of societal and political issues affecting Jews, if Rabbi Meir Kahane did not exist – someone needed to invent him.

And, it seems, if one couldn’t find an author to castigate him – someone needed to invent one. Every number of years. Now, we have the most recent iteration with the publication of Meir Kahane: The Public Life and Political Thought of an American Jewish Radical.

Rabbi Meir Kahane was indeed controversial. Because he needed to be. Because no other American Jewish spokesman gave a damn about the growing anti-Semitism that targeted so many Jews in the streets of New York. And because too few others had addressed the issue of the persecution of Soviet Jewry for fear that they would upset those establishment people who preferred quiet diplomacy. The same diplomacy exercised by Franklin Roosevelt’s court Jews.

The problem that the rabbi confronted then – more than fifty years ago when he established the Jewish Defense League – was the trouble he caused when his actions made noise. But it was a noise that needed to be heard.

Of course Rabbi Meir Kahane wasn’t the only innovator among Jews who stood up, historically, to rebel against anti-Semitism. But he was a voice representing a small minority – of another minority. As others before him had been. His heroes were Ze’ev Jabotinsky, Yosef Trumpledor, Menachem Begin, Shlomo Ben Yosef, Dov Gruner, Meir Feinstein, and their compatriots of the Irgun and Lehi in Eretz Yisrael.

It was their memory that motivated him – this too-small select group of modern Jewish warriors whose names were sadly unknown, or unspoken, in too-many Jewish homes. Certainly not in America. It was not, as Magid’s book would intimate, some psychobabble about the Black Panthers in New York or Chicago. For the rabbi – not yet a radical – it was about Jews standing up to be counted. However few.

But establishment Jewish leadership attacked him – vilified him – because if he was right, then they were wrong.

We recall that Israel’s first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, in the pre-State days, had denounced Ze’ev Jabotinsky as 'Vladimir Hitler'. Not because Jabotinsky was, as others had argued, history's most misunderstood Zionist. It was because his methods were considered extreme (read: unpopular, and sometimes militarist) by the Jewish establishment. And of course, tragically, history proved him right. Yes, Jabotinsky was right.

In Israel – during this period, the exploits of Rabbi Kahane in America were viewed, in the circles that mattered, as brazen. And heroic.

In the Soviet Union – the exploits of Rabbi Kahane and his JDL “hoodlums” were seen as brazen. And heroic.

In the poor sections of New York – where the ADL was not found – JDL leader Rabbi Kahane was seen by the frightened and forgotten senior citizens who his JDL members protected, as brazen, and heroic.

But, in the opulent offices of the American Jewish leaders – he was seen as brazen; and the enemy.

"The baleful consequences of failing to deal with Islamist extremism" by Melanie Phillips

by Melanie Phillips in JNS 21 Oct '21

Sir David Amess and alleged stabber, Ali Harbi Ali, a Moslem of Somali descent

On both sides of the English Channel, the failure to grasp the nettle of Islamist extremism and the frightening consequences of that failure are sounding an urgent alarm for the whole of Western society.

Last weekend, a British Conservative Member of Parliament, Sir David Amess, was stabbed to death in his regular constituency meeting. The man accused of murdering the MP, Ali Harbi Ali, is a British man of Somalian descent who had been referred to Britain’s anti-extremism program but had not been considered a threat.

Although the police are treating this as an Islamist terror attack, virtually all the anguished public debate since the murder has been instead about the culture of incivility on social media and the resulting threats to MPs from violent people of every stripe. Islamic extremism has been all but ignored.

This surreal reaction reflects a perverse development in British political culture. This is an exaggeration of the risk from far-right terrorism while the much greater threat from Islamist terrorism, which accounts for more than 90 percent of the 43,000 suspects on MI5’s watch list and the overwhelming majority of recent terror convictions, has been underplayed.

A report by the Henry Jackson Society think tank says that since 2015, when a Labour MP, Jo Cox, was murdered by a white supremacist, referrals of Islamist extremists to the anti-extremism program have been down by 80 percent while right-wing referrals have been rising.

Yet as an intelligence source told The Telegraph, right-wing extremists “do not present the same risk as Islamists by any distance, by a factor of four or five to one. More time has been spent than appropriate on right-wing extremism and not Islamism.”

Many British Jews also have their heads firmly in the sand. Surveys show that Muslims are three to four times more likely to hold anti-Semitic views, and from anecdotal evidence are disproportionately involved in anti-Jewish attacks. Yet the Jewish community leadership smears those who call attention to this as “Islamophobes.”

The Director of L.A.'s Sephardic (Jewish) Educational Center, Rabbi Buskila, describes how much anti-Israel hostile, Islamo-Marxists filled Los Angeles' streets during Israel's defense to Hamas offensive rocket attacks. Thousands of  Muslims & Leftist protesters marched - under-opposed by patriotic Americans and supporters of the Judeo-Christian Holy Land (as well as the (dis)organized Jewish communal leadership). Recorded June 10, 2021.

In France, this situation is far worse. France has a largely unassimilated, violent and anti-Semitic Muslim community that presents a deep threat to Jews and non-Jews alike. Islamist terrorist attacks there over the past six years have left more than 250 killed and 900 wounded.

There has been a steady stream of Islamist murders and other violence committed against Jews, a situation worsened by the reluctance of the French authorities to deal appropriately with anti-Semitic attacks.

The last of many such last straws for French Jews was the court ruling in May that a Muslim who murdered Sarah Halimi, an elderly Jewish teacher in 2017—by beating and pushing her out of the window of her Paris flat after a series of anti-Jewish comments and shouting Allahu Akhbar!—wasn’t responsible for his actions because he had been high on marijuana.

Many French Jews have been moving to Israel, deciding there’s no future for the Jewish community in France and even that Europe as a whole is finished. That fear is also gripping wider French society, and accounts for the extraordinary rise and rise of Éric Zemmour.

Zemmour is a nationalist provocateur who, although he hasn’t even declared himself a candidate for the French presidential election next year, now dominates France’s political debate. A poll last week put him on 17 percent, ahead of all other rivals to President Emmanuel Macron.

Zemmour, the Jewish son of Algerian immigrants, calls himself a Gaullist and says that unless immigration is checked, France will become an Islamic republic.

Unlike former U.S. President Donald Trump, with whom he is often compared, Zemmour is highly intelligent and intellectual. But just like Trump, he has bust the political scene wide open.

This is because he has put on the table the key issue that no other politicians dare discuss: French national identity, and whether France will survive in the face of Islamization.

Zemmour says it won’t. Many agree, which is why he’s packing them into his rallies across France with fans in “Zemmour 2022” T-shirts chanting: “Zemmour! Président!”

In Britain, Western Europe and America, those who dissent from liberal dogma hostile to fundamental Western values, the nation-state or the existence of Israel are intimidated, smeared and canceled.

Britain, where an epic revolt by the people against liberal universalism delivered Brexit and thus restored the United Kingdom as an independent sovereign nation, is nevertheless run by a political class that continues to refuse even to identify the Islamic holy war being waged against it. Britain therefore cannot defend itself against that attack.

America is well on the way to destroying itself through the hatred of its identity and values with which it has indoctrinated so many of its citizens. The resulting moral and cultural vacuum is being exploited by an alliance between radical Islamists and black, anti-white extremists intent on bringing down America and the West.

Most American Jews, having bought into the intersectional ideologies fueling this onslaught to some extent at least, are incapable of acknowledging the threat these pose to Jewish life.

In Britain, Jewish community leaders promote the fantasy that if they line up alongside intersectionality’s purported “victims,” the Jews will be afforded protection.

The West is like the apocryphal frog being uncomprehendingly boiled in the pot. In Britain, the pot is being heated very slowly; in France, it has reached boiling point; and in America, it has boiled over with many Jews actually helping turn up the heat.

Read full article

Watch top Jewish and Israeli experts at The Jerusalem Post Annual Conference - Live-streamed from Israel

At the Annual Jerusalem Post Conference, speakers and panelists discuss the health, economic and security challenges plaguing Israel, and the growing gap between Israelis and Diaspora Jews. They also celebrate the country’s innovation and successes, and tell the story of how Israel went from Start-up Nation to Vaccination Nation.



Program Schedule (Israeli Time - London+2; New York +7; Pacific +10)

  • 8:40 a.m. - Opening Addresses. M.C: JPost editor-in-chief Yaakov Katz

    Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion

    President Isaac Herzog

    Prime Minister Naftali Bennett
    Ron Lauder, President, World Jewish Congress

    Larry Mizel, Chairman, Simon Wiesenthal Center

    9:30 a.m. - When Innovation Meets Your Bank Account
    Bank Discount CEO Uri Levin

    9:50 a.m. - The Future is Now
    Israeli Philanthropist Sylvan Adams in conversation with Yaakov Katz

    10:05 a.m. - Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman in conversation with Yaakov Katz

    10:15 p.m. - Financial Trends in 2021 and Beyond
    Eitan Neishlos, Fintech Innovator, Investor & Philanthropist (speech)
    Chief Investment Officer of Clarity Capital Eran Peleg in conversation wtih Gwen Ackerman, Senior Writer, Bloomberg

    10:35 a.m. - Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar in conversation with Yaakov Katz

    10:50 a.m. - Cybersecurity: Staying Safe in a Dangerous World
    A series of one-on-one interviews between Seth Frantzman and:

    Gil Shwed, CEO, Check Point

    Yevgeny Dibrov, Co-founder and CEO, Armis Security

    Shirona Partem, VP of Corp Devel & Strategy, KAPE Technologies

    Rubi Aronashvili, Founder and CEO, CYE

    Michal Braverman-Blumenstyk, General Manager, Microsoft Israel Development Center

    11:25 a.m. - FIFA President Gianni Infantino in conversation with Sharon Davidovitch

    11:35 a.m. - Former US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin in conversation with Steve Linde, editor-in-chief, The Jerusalem Report

Improve your fate for the coming year - atoning on Hoshana Raba at Happy Minyan of L.A.

The four species: Willow leaves (aravah), date-palm tree frond
(lulav), myrtle tree bough w/leaves, and citron-tree fruit (etrog)

 The holiday of Sukkos concludes on Hoshana Raba - the 4th and final "Day of Awe" which precedes Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah. It  provides us another milestone opportunity to have heaven hear our prayers for forgiveness of our sins - promises to do better in the new year - before the angels carry out your decree.

Cantor Yehuda Solomon shakes his lulav
towards the sky seen through the sukkah

At the annual Hoshana Rabah service at L.A.'s Happy (Carlebach) Minyan in 2020, Rabbi Aaron Parry and Cantor Yehuda Solomon teach us their thoughts about Hoshana Raba, the concept of "Mechilah" (which means
seeking forgiveness) - and how long beyond Yom Kippur may we still influence our fate for the coming year? Does Hoshana Rabah serve as a book-sealing - or do we have until Chanukah, or beyond?

Rabbi Aaron Parry has since moved up to learn (and continue teaching from) the biblical and still spiritual city of Tsfat in northern Israel.

'Why on Sept 12, 2001, and even 20-years later, still - it's not over'- Daniel Greenfield

Daniel Greenfield, editor of The Point on Frontpage Magazine and SultanKnish.com (and an orthodox Jew) assesses how Western societies have not evolved to recognize Islamism - and defend their people against Islamist imperialism since Sept 11, 2001.

"It's Not Over" - Sultan Knish, Sept 12, 2012 

“In the name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate,” a terrorist declares on the Flight 93 cockpit recording. That’s followed by the sounds of the terrorists assaulting a passenger.“Please don’t hurt me,” he pleads. “Oh God.”

As the passengers rush the cabin, a Muslim terrorist proclaims, “In the name of Allah.”


As New York firefighters struggle up the South Tower with 100 pounds of equipment on their backs trying to save lives until the very last moment, the Flight 93 passengers push toward the cockpit. The Islamic hijackers call out, “Allahu Akbar.”

(Mr. Greenfield discussed this and related ideas at Beverly Hills' 9/11 Memorial Garden after the Fire Dept of L.A.'s 9/11/17 Memorial Ceremony).


Mohammed Atta had advised his fellow terrorists that when the fighting begins, “Shout, 'Allahu Akbar,' because this strikes fear in the hearts of the non-believers.” He quoted the Koran’s command that Muslim holy warriors terrorize non-believers by beheading them and urged them to follow Mohammed’s approach, “Take prisoners and kill them.”

The 9/11 ringleader quoted the Koran again. “No prophet should have prisoners until he has soaked the land with blood.”

Confronting anti-Israelism among Progressive press, Larry Elder earns respect among Jewish Democrats

How accurate and fair is the media reportage regarding the Jewish State of Israel - and the Palestinian narrative of their being a persecuted, occupied  country?  The Jewish National Fund held a forum on this topic at its annual Los Angeles breakfast in November, 2017.

J.N.F.'s Executive Director in  Los Angeles, Lou Rosenberg: "Today was our 12th annual
breakfast for Israel. This is an event that's grown from 50 people to over 1200 people and today's subject was media bias in Israel. I think we offered a very thought-provoking subject with two keynote speakers - one Chemi Shalev who came in from Israel and represent Ha'aretz magazine and Larry Elder who's a national radio talk show host." 

Larry Elder debated Chemi Shalev, Barak Lurie moderator
Larry Elder is a Libertarian, syndicated by Salem Media, and Chemi Shalev, is a Liberal, U.S. editor and political correspondent for Ha'aretz- Israeli English-language newspaper online. J.N.F. board member, Barak Lurie, Esq, moderated the discussion.

JooTube: "What do you think about the comments from the audience where you thought where there were people who felt that it Israel is not getting a biased reportage - themselves living in the United States - reading the same media that you and I do?"

Attorney, Barak Lurie moderated the discussion

Barak Lurie:  "I think that most America is a unique animal of course and so I think that they don't realize and I think even we don't realize that the give-and-take that we have politically here in America is far greater than just about anywhere else in the world our sense of freedom of press is much stronger. Even having said that though I think that we do have some balance issues especially when it comes to Israel - that to me and my personal opinion is that Israel does not get the fair shake that it deserves. I'm hoping that it's getting better over the years with the advent of social media and so many different more forms of news outlets - so that's a good sign."

Salem Radio's Larry Elder debates Ha'aretz U.S. Editor Chemi Shalev at the Beverly Hilton, presented by Jewish National Fund of Greater L.A., exec dir., Lou Rosenberg. Moderated by attorney, Barak Lurie in November 2017.


Larry Elder makes the argument of how the international press is unjust prejudiced in reporting about Israel and the jihad against her.

Larry Elder discusses his experience pleading the case of mainstream media bias against Israel at the Jewish National Fund of L.A.'s winter breakfast.

JooTube: When people heard KRLA, which is a conservative talk host, there was probably a knee-jerk reaction within the first, let me say, the majority of the audience that well he's going to be conservative but once they started hearing your perspectives all of a sudden people started applauding and changing their view!

Elder: Well that was nice!  I'm really not a conservative, I'm a Libertarian - I believe in states rights,  I believe in Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution. And that most of the things that we debate and fight over should be handled at the state level - whether it's abortion, whether it's the war on drugs whether it's doctor-assisted suicide, whether it's same-sex marriage, all these things (in my opinion) should be done on a state-by-state basis. If most of the people in the room who are left-wing were to have a conversation with me for about 10 minutes I suspect that it they'd be agreeing with me almost at least 50 percent of the time!

Two decades on, the West’s cultural fault-line is exposed by September 11th's remains

by Melanie Phillips in JNS.org Sept 9, 2021

For the West, there are no “forever wars.” Its wars are either won or lost; there are victors and vanquished. For Islamic extremists, war is indeed forever; defeat is only temporary.
Few of us, if any, will ever forget those terrible images of the 9/11 attacks on America. Twenty years on, it’s painfully clear that many Westerners still don’t grasp the full nature and scope of what they witnessed when the twin towers of the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan fell.

On that dreadful day, the West was brought face to face with the fundamentalist strain dominant in the Islamic world. This involves the promotion of jihad, or holy war, against the non-Islamic world and those Muslims who the fundamentalists think aren’t Islamic enough.

The West, particularly Britain and America, had mostly ignored the fact that this war had already been under way against itself for at least a decade.

In the 1980s, Western-backed mujahideen ran the Soviet Union out of Afghanistan. The British and Americans ignored warnings that those fighters were Islamic fundamentalists who would now be galvanized to follow their defeat of the Soviet empire by attempting to defeat what they saw as the Western one. The rise of Al-Qaeda and the 9/11 attacks were the result.

But the West had also ignored the mounting evidence of a cultural onslaught against it that had been waged by both Sunni and Shia Islam for years.

Britain seemed oblivious to the fact that, during the 1980s, Muslim immigrants had brought with them institutions dominated by the fundamentalist Wahhabi strain of Islam that had been imported into Pakistan and Bangladesh from Saudi Arabia. With a growing domestic constituency of fundamentalists who were being either ignored or indulged, Britain was sleepwalking into Islamization.

In 1989, the British writer Salman Rushdie was sentenced to death by Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khomeini, for insulting Islam in his novel The Satanic Verses. He was forced to live in hiding for years, with his book publicly burned on British streets.

Yet few grasped that this was far more than an attack on a writer. It was an attempt to force the West to submit to Islamic values. And the emergence of the Shia Islamic Republic of Iran itself galvanized in turn the Sunni world to jihad.

After 9/11, however, the West told itself that jihadi fundamentalism was a “perversion” of Islam. This is dishonest. While many Western Muslims endorse human rights and deplore the atrocities perpetrated in the name of their religion, jihadi excesses are nevertheless rooted solidly in Islamic religious texts. Sept. 11 was an act of Islamic holy war.

Those who cannot even bring themselves to name the enemy that is waging war upon them will be defeated by it. That’s why the claim of “Islamophobia” is so troubling.

For while real prejudice against Muslims is wrong, “Islamophobia” was invented by the holy warriors of the Muslim Brotherhood to silence any adverse comment of Islam. It was a religious obligation to impose a Muslim law of blasphemy. By enlisting against “Islamophobia,” the West has effectively bent its knee to Islam—whose very name means submission.

Even today, Britain has not outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood, ignoring the way its sponsorship of myriad groups and institutions has embedded the jihad into British and Western society.

In 2004, The Washington Post reported that American Muslim Brotherhood supporters made up “the US Islamic community’s most organized force” by running hundreds of mosques and business ventures, promoting civic activities and setting up organizations to promote Islam.

Yet documents unearthed during the Holy Land Foundation trial in 2007 alleged that the Muslim Brotherhood in America was involved in weapons training, counter-espionage against the FBI and CIA, and “eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.”

No less perversely, the West has continually denied that the Arab and Muslim war against Israel is rooted in Islamic holy war (a blindness shared by Israel itself, which chooses to deal with this war of annihilation on more manageable nationalistic rather than religious grounds). It has similarly ignored the anti-Semitism that courses through the Islamic world, even though leading Islamists have acknowledged that their fear and hatred of the Jews lie behind their war on the West and modernity.

The 9/11 terror attacks didn’t just reveal the West’s blindness over Islamization. They also exposed its cultural and civilizational fault line that had been opening up since early in the 20th century.

British isolationism is rooted in the carnage of the First World War. In America, the avoidance of what Thomas Jefferson called “entangling alliances” goes back to the founding fathers.

Appeasement-minded Britain and America woke up to the threat from Hitler almost too late—and too late to prevent the Holocaust.

But after the Second World War, Western elites persuaded themselves they could actually abolish war itself. Economic ties would avoid it, international law would prevent genocide, and war itself would be replaced by negotiation and “peace processes.”

For a while, 9/11 punctured this lethal fantasy, resulting in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to suppress their incubation of Islamic terror.

In both places, however, the West was unable and unwilling to stay the course. Public rage at the junking of the “never war” fantasy was hugely compounded by the West’s strategic error in believing that invading these countries and then helping them become democratic societies would draw their terrorist sting.

The seriousness of the resulting mistakes in Iraq, in particular, seemed to confirm the influential view, in a West that had lost its belief in itself, that this arrogant and imperialistic culture had no right to tell others how to behave.

So the West failed to see that while the execution of these wars may have been deeply flawed, the necessity to defend itself against a deadly foe was all too real and had not gone away.

This loss of cultural self-belief had many causes. Secularism had eroded the biblical foundations of the West. The carnage of World War I destroyed the belief in dying for your country.

Most devastatingly of all, the Holocaust passed a shattering judgment against modernity. So in the repudiation of its foundational beliefs, the West arrived at precisely the same point as the Islamic jihadists.

Of course, Westerners never saw any similarity between themselves and Islamists locked into the seventh century and whom it dismissed as incomprehensible, crazy and worthless.

But in a mirror image, the West was busily severing the connection with its own historic values. This was compounded by an arrogant assumption that Western attitudes were universal.

The West therefore tried to impose its utopian, post-modern belief in negotiation and compromise upon a Middle East and Islamic world that saw conflict solely in terms of victory and defeat, strength and weakness.

And so the West has continued to repeat its fiascos by indulging in the same fantasies that it will end the “forever wars”—whether through the Israel-Palestine “peace process,” the Iran nuclear deal or abandoning Afghanistan, where both British and American governments are now spinning themselves the fantasy that Taliban “realists” will keep the Taliban jihadists in check.

For Islamists, war is indeed forever. For such fanatics, defeat is only ever temporary.

For the West, however, there are no “forever wars.” Its wars are either won or lost; there are victors and vanquished.

And military strength matters less than belief. The 9/11 attackers didn’t use sophisticated military hardware. They hijacked civilian aircraft and turned them into flying human bombs of enormous destructive potential.

What fuels the jihad is the power of an idea. That idea is the cult of death.

To overcome a cult of death, the West needs a belief in life. Its own life. That is the way to draw the necessary courage and resolve from this most somber anniversary; but alas, it seems the most difficult of lessons to learn.

Melanie Phillips, a British journalist, broadcaster and author, writes a weekly column for JNS. Currently a columnist for “The Times of London,” her personal and political memoir, “Guardian Angel,” has been published by Bombardier, which also published her first novel, “The Legacy.” Go to melaniephillips.substack.com to access her work.