US Analysts Over-Run by Pro-ISIS Social Media, Military Posts Threatened
US investigators are becoming overwhelmed trying to keep up with the social media barrage by US-based supporters of the Islamic State, with the latest information suggesting "US military bases, locations, and events could be targeted in the near-term." The warning comes in a new, six-page bulletin warning law enforcement and specifically military personnel to be vigilant during upcoming national holidays and military events due to the "heightened threat of attacks by the Islamic State."
Cleveland, Justice Department Reach Settlement on Policing
Cleveland has reached a settlement with the Department of Justice over a pattern of excessive force and civil rights violations by its police department, and it could be announced as soon as Tuesday, a senior federal law enforcement official said. News of the settlement came days after a white police officer was acquitted of manslaughter for firing the final 15 rounds of a 137-shot police barrage through the windshield of a car carrying two unarmed black suspects in 2012.
Judge to Kansas Union: Stop Threatening 'Bodily Harm' to Critics
A federal labor arbiter ordered a Kansas union to stop threatening bodily harm against union dissidents it was supposed to represent in a grievance case. The NLRB sanctioned the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers District 70, Local 839, an AFL-CIO affiliate, for using intimidation tactics against dissidents. The board's regional director concluded the union had used threats of physical abuse and had attempted to get non-members fired from Spirit Aerosystems.
Obama Takes Executive Action on Environment with EPA Water Rule
This week, the Environmental Protection Agency is expected to release a new rule to "protect" a significantly larger percentage of streams and wetlands that provide habitat for wildlife and sources of drinking water. The move is another example of Pres. Obama taking executive action on environmental and climate issues regardless of whether he has the support of Congress.
Chicago: 4 Year-Old Girl Shot in Head; Spate of Violence Hits City
A 4-year-old girl playing outside a South Side party was shot in the head Friday evening after someone opened fire from a passing car. The sun hadn't yet set on the traditional first night of summer before the anguished cries of a mother pierced the air, and Chicago faced another senseless act of violence against a child. Twenty people were shot and two people killed around the city between Friday afternoon and late Saturday.
29 Shot, 9 Dead in Bloody Memorial Day Weekend in Baltimore
The city of Baltimore saw a bloody Memorial Day weekend, with a total of 29 people being shot, including nine who died, as the city scrambles to deal with its deadliest month since 1999. The Baltimore Sun reported that one of those injured was a 9-year-old in West Baltimore who was shot in the leg Monday night. Another man nearby suffered a bullet graze to his head, police told the paper. Two victims in separate shootings suffered fatal gunshot wounds that pushed the number of homicides to 35 for May. A total of 108 have been killed in the city this year
NY Rejects All Applications for New Charter Schools
The state Education Department has rejected all 15 applications for new charter schools, including 12 in New York City, claiming they failed to meet academic standards. But charter-school advocates weren't buying it, saying the rejection of all the applicants reeked of pro-teacher-union politics.
Foundations Plan to Pay News Media to Promote Radical UN Agenda
The United Nations Foundation created by billionaire Ted Turner, along with a branch of media giant Thompson Reuters, is starting to train a squadron of journalists and subsidize media content in 33 countries - including the US and Britain - in a planned $6 million effort to popularize the bulky and sweeping UN-sponsored Sustainable Development Goals, prior to a global UN summit this September.
Ala. Joins States Calling for Convention to Limit Federal Power
Alabama became the fourth state on Thursday to pass the legislation calling for a convention of states to limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government. Alabama is the first state to pass such legislation this year and joins Georgia, Florida, and Alaska which passed the Convention of States resolution in 2014.
Senate Rejects Compromise Bill on Surveillance
Senators left Capitol Hill early Saturday morning without taking action to extend or replace a controversial surveillance program set to expire at month's end, paralyzed by a debate over the proper balance between civil liberties and national security. In an after-midnight vote, the Senate turned back a House-passed bill that would end the National Security Agency's bulk collection of private telephone records, the only legislation that offered a smooth transition ahead of a June 1 deadline.
ISIS Claims Deadly Saudi Mosque Attack; Promises More 'Black Days'
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque in Saudi Arabia, warning that more "black days" loom ahead in a direct challenge to the rulers of the Sunni kingdom. Friday's attack was the kingdom's deadliest militant assault since a 2004 Al Qaeda attack on foreign worker compounds, which sparked a massive Saudi security force crackdown.
White House: ISIS Won't Be Defeated on Obama's Watch
Pres. Obama does not envision defeating ISIS during his remaining time in office, the White House said Thursday, as administration officials counseled patience during a prolonged "degrade phase" of a strategy they maintain is accomplishing its goals. Critics this week urged the White House to revamp the US strategy to combat ISIS in the wake of the militants' territorial gains in Ramadi, Iraq, and in Syria.
Islamic State Seizes Syria's Last Border Crossing with Iraq
The Islamic State has seized the last border crossing between Syria and Iraq controlled by the Syrian government after security forces withdrew. Iraqi officials said Iraqi security forces had also withdrawn from their side of the crossing known as as al-Waleed in Iraq and al-Tanf in Syria. The crossing is in Syria's Homs province, where Islamic State on Wednesday seized the historic city of Palmyra from government forces.
FBI Overlooked Texas Shooter's Violent Tweets Because 'There Are So Many Like Him'
FRANCES MARTEL, BREITBART.COM
An unidentified "senior law enforcement official" tells the New York Times that, while the FBI had been aware of Garland, Texas jihadist attacker Elton Simpson for nearly a decade, they did not follow his violent, pro-jihad tweets as closely as they could have because "there are so many like him" that the agency is overwhelmed. In a report highlighting the long paper trail Simpson left behind of supporting and engaging with jihadists online, particularly on Twitter, the Times notes that the sheer barrage of information can make it difficult for law enforcement to identify legitimate and imminent threats out of a sea of wishful jihadist thinkers. Simpson and his roommate, Nadir Soofi, attacked a "Draw Muhammad" art contest in Garland, Texas on Sunday armed with assault rifles. They were almost immediately neutralized by a traffic officer working at the Culwell Center in Garland, and managed only to shoot one officer in the leg before their demise. The New York Times notes that, while the center was heavily monitored due to a barrage of terrorist threats online, Simpson himself had only been cursorily monitored. He nonetheless was extremely active on Twitter: "Mr. Simpson, a convert to Islam with a long history of extremism, regularly traded calls for violence on Twitter with Islamic State fighters and supporters, as well as avowed enemies of Pamela Geller, the organizer of the cartoon contest." Simpson appeared to be communicating extensively in particular with Mohamed Abduhallahi Hassan, an American who is currently waging jihad with the terrorist group Al-Shabaab in Somalia. Hassan is believed to have been the first jihadist online to highlight the Draw Muhammad contest and call for an attack on the event. Despite Simpson's public calls for jihad on Twitter, one law enforcement official told the New York Times "There are so many like him that you have to prioritize your investigations." The statement is particularly concerning following a press release by the Islamic State claiming that there are at least 71 active Islamic State members in the United States, trained to kill.
Evidently, 'Black America'
Doesn't Get It
FRANK J. SALVATO
One Baltimore protester exclaimed to FOX News' Geraldo Rivera, "I want to tell White America to stop not giving a damn about Black people." And there you have it in a nutshell, the underlying sentiment trying to be vocalized by a violent, frustrated Black urban demographic that has taken to the streets in cities areas across America. There is just one thing wrong with that narrative. It is based in obliviousness of a cultural reality that has been prevalent for the last two to three generations. And it is truly sad. I grew up in the 1960s. I remember full well the assassinations of Pres. John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The 1960s and the 1970s were decades of true and real change; change that reshaped and redefined American culture in many ways. Those years gave way to the Civil Rights movement and the understanding of a need for gender equality, to name but a few of the good things. But it also gave way to a degradation of the importance of personal responsibility, civility and a need to be a productive and positive member of a community. During those years, children were taught to be painstakingly aware of what today would be referred to as racial privilege. In our schools and in our homes, Americans of all racial backgrounds began to understand, fully, the brilliance of the words of Civil Rights movement leaders, especially Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We were brought up – taught in our schools and by our parents – that we were to form our judgments of other people not on the color of their skin but on the conduct of their character. It made sense. And for at least two to three generations now that is the way White American children have been raised. But where in the 1960s and 1970s, there was a real issue with racial disparity and discrimination, today we face a moment in time when an entire faction of American society – urban "Black America" – either won't acknowledge or is incapable of acknowledging the fact that racial disparity and discrimination – societally and systemically, as history accurately recalls – has ceased to exist in the form they have been led to believe.
Obama's Iraq War
We all know Bush's Iraq War, but we don't know much about Obama's Iraq War. Republicans fight wars. Democrats engage in police actions, impose No-Fly Zones and provide security for humanitarian missions. They don't do anything as vulgar as fight wars. That would be warmongering. Even by the war-shy standards of Democrats, Obama's word games with war have been something else. Obama's wars are complex shell games. When he goes to war, he claims that it was at the request of a third party, which was actually fulfilling his request to file a request that it later takes back, based on a pretext that turns out to be false, to carry out a mission that turns out to be a pretext for regime change. At least that's how it happened in Libya. When he inherits a war, he changes its name and announces a withdrawal while leaving a heavy military presence in place, before then actually withdrawing. If the first withdrawal doesn't result in a disaster, because it never really took place, he can't be blamed for the disaster that begins after the real withdrawal. After all the original withdrawal worked, so withdrawing can't be the problem. That's what he did in Iraq. It's what he plans to do in Afghanistan. Obama's Iraq War doesn't exist as a distinct entity because the administration has gone to great lengths to distance itself from any appearance of being involved in it. When his original promise of withdrawing within sixteen months proved unfeasible, he declared that "By Aug. 31, 2010, America's combat mission in Iraq would end." The war was renamed from Operation Iraqi Freedom to Operation New Dawn. The 50,000 soldiers became members of "Advise and Assist Brigades".
Disasters at Home & Abroad
VICTOR DAVIS HANSON
Things are starting to collapse, abroad and at home. We all sense it, even as we bicker over who caused it and why. ISIS took Ramadi last week. That city once was a Bastogne to the brave Americans who surged to save it in 2007 and 2008. ISIS, once known at the White House as the "Jayvees," were certainly "on the run" — right into the middle of that strategically important city. On a smaller scale, ISIS is doing to the surge cities of Iraq what Hitler did to his neighbors between 1939 and 1941, and what Putin is perhaps doing now on the periphery of Russia. In Ramadi, ISIS will soon do its accustomed thing of beheading and burning alive its captives, seeking some new macabre twist to sustain its Internet video audience. We in the West trample the First Amendment and jail a video maker for posting a supposedly insensitive film about Islam; in contrast, jihadists post snuff movies of burnings and beheadings to global audiences. We argue not about doing anything or saving anybody, but about whether it is inappropriate to call the macabre killers "jihadists." When these seventh-century psychopaths tire of warring on people, they turn to attacking stones, seeking to ensure that there is not a vestige left of the Middle East's once-glorious antiquities. I assume the ancient Sassanid and Roman imperial site at Palmyra will soon be looted and smashed. What is unique about American foreign policy today is not just that it is rudderless, but how quickly and completely the 70-year postwar order seems to have disintegrated — and how little interest the American people take in the collapse, thanks to the administration's apparent redeeming message, which translates, "It's their misfortune and none of our own."
Peace & Freedom
COL. ROBERT PAPPAS, USMC (RET.)
From the time shortly after Yahweh created the earth, Adam and Eve and their subsequent disobedience of his admonition to not eat the fruit of the tree that was in the midst of the Garden of Eden, or touch it, conflict has been the scourge of humankind. Many conflicts have been in the name of religion but in reality were motivated by power, territory, politics and money. Whereas conflict and wars have ravaged the earth from the beginning of recorded history, and despite a desire and yearning for peace, each succeeding generation seems powerless to avoid another. It is axiomatic that World History is of war with brief interludes of peace. Sadly, humankind continues the same path today despite a claim by the President that we live in an era of peace. It is indeed notable however, that Europe has experienced a longer era of stability and peace since World War II than at any time in the preceding hundreds of years. This was made possible by the Allies lead by the United States in the west ironically joined by a communist totalitarian Soviet Union in the east. But if one looks away from Europe, despite statistics and graphs that seemingly illustrate otherwise, war continues to rage with the very real prospect that it will explode into full-blown worldwide conflict. Statistically, total fatalities are down as compared to the more than hundred million lost in the last century at the hands of communist Chinese and Soviets on the one hand and German socialists and Japanese Imperialists on the other. To protect its vital interests, the United States became engaged and, it both inflicted and suffered significant losses during WWI, II, Korea, and Vietnam. Then late in the twentieth and early twenty first century, the US again inflicted significant losses against enemy forces in Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom while pushing back against Islamic forces that waged unconventional warfare against it.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"The society that puts equality before freedom will end up with neither. The society that puts freedom before equality will end up with a great measure of both." ~ Milton Friedman