Saturday, 07 November 2009

THE AMA REVOLT OVER ENDORSEMENT OF OBAMACARE

Ken Berwitz

Monday should be an interesting day over at the American Medical Association's offices. 

From Fox News:

FOXNews.com

November 06, 2009

AMA's Endorsement of House Health Care Bill Sparks Internal Uprising

 

Some AMA members are outraged that the group's trustees made the endorsement without The American Medical Association's much-touted endorsement of the House health care reform bill has triggered a revolt among some members who want the endorsement withdrawn.

Some members are outraged that the group's trustees made the endorsement without the formal approval of the organization's House of Delegates.

On Monday, delegates will vote on a resolution offered by some members that, if approved, will withdraw the AMAs endorsement of the bill.

President Obama cited the endorsement of the influential AMA, along with AARP's, in a surprise appearance Thursday in the White House briefing room as he attempted to beat back criticism that the bill would gut Medicare.

"They're endorsing this bill because they know it will strengthen Medicare, not jeopardize it," he told reporters. "They know it will protect the benefits our seniors receive, not cut them."

"So I want everyone to remember that the next time you hear the same tired arguments to the contrary from insurance companies and their lobbyists and remember this endorsement the next time you see a bunch of misleading ads on television," he added.

In other words, when you hear that "The AMA endorses ObamaCare", please be aware that some of the AMA endorses ObamaCare, and some doesn't.  We may find out just how many fall into that latter category over the next few days and weeks.

Ditto for "The AARP endorses ObamaCare".  Last month there were reports that something like 60,000 seniors left the organization over this endorsement - and however many the actual number was, it probably is a good deal higher by now.

Given that ObamaCare removes about a HALF TRILLION DOLLARS from medicare, you have to wonder just what President Obama and his people said to the AMA and AARP - what they are giving the organization's coffers - to get those endorsements.

I know I do.


OBAMA'S PRIORITIES

Ken Berwitz

Today we are still in the aftermath of the Fort Hood terrorist attack - with most of the dead not buried yet, and dozens of injured in hospitals. 

In New York, the USS New York was commissioned.  This warship was made using metal from the World Trade Center, collected after the 9/11 attack. 

Here is Commander In Chief Barack Obama's schedule:

11:25AM THE PRESIDENT addresses the House Democratic Caucus - Cannon House Office Building

2:30PM THE PRESIDENT makes a statement to the press on Health Care - Rose Garden

2:45PM THE PRESIDENT and THE FIRST LADY depart The White House en route Camp David - South Lawn

Words fail me on this one.  I am sick to my stomach.

I just hope President Obama is able to get in all 18, not just the back 9. It'll be good for his morale.

Oh, by the way, former President Bush is at Fort Hood today.  Unlike the current President, I guess he didn't have anything more important to do.


PROOF OF CITIZENSHIP AND HEALTH CARE

Ken Berwitz

From Rasmussen Research:

The health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats contains many controversial items that divide the general public. However, one area of consensus among the public is the desire to restrict government health care benefits to U.S. citizens only.

 

Eighty-three percent (83%) of voters nationwide say that people should be required to prove they are a citizen of the United States before receiving government health care subsidies. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 12% disagree and five percent (5%) are not sure.

 

The desire to limit the benefits to U.S. citizens is found across demographic and partisan lines. It is held by 95% of Republicans, 70% of Democrats and 87% of those not affiliated with either major party. It is favored by nine-out-of-10 conservatives and moderates, along with 56% of those who consider themselves politically liberal. But 32% of liberals hold the opposite view.

Three questions:

1) Is this wording specifically in the ObamaCare bill - accompanied by a requirement that proof of citizenship be physically produced?

2) If not, why not?

3) Is there any doubt that the same people are going to dish out the same tired, stale lies that a) requiring proof of citizenship to get something only citizens can get, in some way diminishes privacy rights, or b) that it will discourage minorities from applying? 

Those are the two biggest lies used to dodge any serious attempt to restrict ObamaCare to legals, and you can bet your life they will be used again and again.

Ken Berwitz zeke - or, as the joke goes, "When I die I want to be buried in Chicago. That way I can stay politically active" (11/07/09)

Zeke .... No proof of citizenship required for voting, either .... In fact, no proof of who you are .... .... Equal voting rights for residents of cemeteries. (11/07/09)


ANSWERING SGT. KAMAL

Ken Berwitz

From www.statesman.com:

At mosque attended by suspect, anger and mourning

Muslims at Friday service have moment of silence, voice their horror.


AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF
Saturday, November 07, 2009

KILLEEN Sgt. Fahad Kamal attended prayer services at the Islamic Community of Greater Killeen on Friday just as he has frequently since arriving at Fort Hood seven months ago.

This day, though, the 26-year-old medic, who served in Afghanistan from January 2007 to April 2008, wore his uniform. This day, the devout Muslim from Houston was seeking to strike a far different image than that of Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, who is accused of shooting 43 people at Fort Hood on Thursday.

Kamal said he had come to the mosque from a gloomy base, where "soldiers aren't really talking about the shootings because we're trying to move on."

He said his first reaction to the news of shootings was "angry embarrassment," and his concerns echoed those of others in the Central Texas Muslim community, who arrived at services in a somber mood.

"I hope people don't make themselves believe that religion has anything to do with what happened," Kamal said.

Kamal is one of about 40 members of Killeen's close-knit Muslim community. When he arrived to pray at the one-story red brick mosque just off Texas 195 on Fort Hood Street, he and dozens of others quietly dodged a crowd of reporters on the otherwise calm stretch of road.

The 40-minute prayer service included a moment of silence and a passionate condemnation of the shootings from Dr. Manzoor Farooqi, president of the mosque, who called the action a "shameless attack."

Farooqi, who has led the mosque for 12 years, said that he knew Hasan from Ramadan observances but that he had not known him very well.

"When I saw him on television, I thought, 'I can't believe he'd do such a stupid thing,' to be frank," Farooqi said.

"The shootings are devastating and tragic," said Danquah Osman, who is treasurer of the mosque and a liaison between the mosque and Fort Hood. Osman, who has lived in Killeen since 1976, said he served in the Army as a first sergeant for 22 years.

"We're supposed to care for each other in the military," Osman said. "Those victims could have been my sons."

Abdulkarim Hulwe, 45, a retired Army veteran who said he talked to Hasan frequently, said Hasan struck him as a devout but quiet Muslim who tended to go to work early and sometimes prayed at the mosque before work. He said he last saw Hasan at 6:15 a.m. Thursday.

"He just appeared to be an outstanding soldier. He ... always seemed to be on his best behavior," Hulwe said.

As Austin Imam Islam Mossaad said Thursday, when news of the shooting spread, Muslims in Central Texas all hoped that the gunman did not share their faith. But when members of Killeen's Islamic community learned that Hasan had been among them for prayers at Ramadan a couple of months ago, they said it deepened their anxiety that his actions could have a lasting effect on their peace-loving community.

"Islam promotes peace and equality, and violence has nothing to do with that," Kamal said. "I hope that people won't start stereotyping, since that's what people tend to do."

To answer Sgt. Kamal: 

I both disagree, and agree, with what you are saying.

I disagree - strongly - that religion had nothing to do with the Fort Hood terrorist attack.  nidal malik hasan 100% associated his religion with what he did, right down to handing out korans the day of his murderous attack and screaming ALLAH AKBAR as he started shooting. 

I also disagree that "Islam promotes peace and equality" - when stated as an absolute.  It is impossible for me to reconcile the hatred, violence and killing done in so many places around the world in the name of Islam, with peace and equality.

However, I would have agreed - just as strongly - with you if you had said "MY religion has nothing to do with this", and "MY Islam promotes peace and equality".

The point is that there are Muslims - vast numbers of them, apparently including you, Sgt. Kamal - whose practice of Islam is exactly as you say.  I respect them, I respect their religion and I sympathize with the agony they are going through because of nidal malik hasan's terrorist attack.

But there are other Muslims, hasan obviously among them, for whom Islam means violence, hatred and death.  We can't wordsmith this fact away.  It is what it is.

So my sympathies to you, sir.  I do not doubt that you serve the USA with honor.  And I hope that, as we join in condemning people who stereotype all Muslims as being terrorists, we also join in condemning Islam as it is practiced by the Muslims who fit that stereotype.


BEGGING FOR CHANGE

Ken Berwitz

Despite his unfortunate facial resemblance to Yankee manager Joe Girardi (who, I assure you, is perfectly happy with the way things are right now), this guy has a really funny, inventive sign.

I thought you might want to see it:

 

 

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RICH REPUBLICANS? OR IS THAT DEMOCRATS?

Ken Berwitz

According to data just released by the Center for Responsive Politics, Congress has 237 millionaires.  That is 44% of the entire 535 member total.  

And they all must be Republicans, right?  Because Republicans are the rich guys, right?

Er, 4 of the top 5 are Democrats.  As are 14 of the top 25.

And, according to The Hill, 28 out of the top 50 are Democrats.

I just thought you might want to know the facts versus the fiction.


OBAMA'S SHOUT-OUT

Ken Berwitz

Two days ago, when the Fort Hood terrorist attack took place, I heavily criticized Barack Obama for standing in front of a podium while all media were broadcasting what they thought would be his comments about what had happened,  but then spending almost two minutes on political BS before getting to it. 

Part of his political BS was asking for "shout-out" for Dr. Joseph Medicine Crow-High Bird - usually called Dr. Joe Medicine Crow - because he was a recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor.

A lot was made of this "shout-out", but not by me.  I felt that the entire two minutes, regardless of its specific content, was a disgrace and a dishonor.  Besides, the guy won our country's highest military medal, so how can you argue with acknowledgement for that.

Except for one teeny weeny little detail, which I'll let Michael Bates of www.newsbusters.org tell you about.  The bold print is mine:

Obama Gives Shout Out to 'Congressional Medal of Honor Winner' Who Isn't

 

By Mike Bates

November 6, 2009 - 01:18 ET

 

The Washington Post this afternoon reported "President Obama delivers remarks on Ft. Hood shooting at end of tribal leaders conference." The transcript begins:

 

SPEAKER: PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA

 

[*] OBAMA: Please, everybody, have a seat. Let me first of all just thank Ken and the entire Department of the Interior staff for organizing just an extraordinary conference.

 

I want to thank my Cabinet members and senior administration officials who participated today. I hear that Dr. Joe Medicine Crow (ph) was around, and so I want to give a shout out to that Congressional Medal of Honor winner. It's good to see you.

 

Ah, the dangers of giving shout outs without a teleprompter.  Crow is not a Medal of Honor recipient.  As noted by the Congressional Medal of Honor Society:

 

The Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action against an enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving in the Armed Services of the United States. Generally presented to its recipient by the President of the United States of America in the name of Congress, it is often called the Congressional Medal of Honor.

 

Crow's name is not included on the Society's Medal of Honor recipient list.  He was, however, awarded the Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, in August.

 

Obama, often described as "cerebral" by the mainstream media, should know the difference between the Medal of Honor and the Medal of Freedom, especially since he personally awarded the latter to Crow.  Don't expect his blunder to receive wide coverage.  It's not something he can blame George Bush for. 

Tell me:  Have you read about this in your newspaper?  Have you seen a thing about it on the network news?

Now tell me:  What if that were President Bush?  Would you have been enlightened as to the fact that, not only did he put minutes of political blather ahead of the attack on our military men and women, but gave a celebratory "shout-out" to someone who didn't have the honor he was shouting out about? 

I have come to realize that the difference between a President who is brilliant and a President who is an idiot often is more than how well he reads a teleprompter or how correctly he uses grammar and syntax.  It is how our wonderful "neutral" media cover his gaffes. 

If a President's gaffe is magnified into something major by stories and features in the media, it becomes indelibly associated with him.  He's an idiot.  If it is ignored, the public doesn't know it happened and there is no association at all.  He's brilliant.

Therefore, on behalf of Barack Obama, I would like to heartily thank our media for looking the other way over and over again, thus elevating him to brilliant status. 

You're doing a great job, folks.  Mr. Obama, Mr. Axelrod and Mr. ayers, Reverend Wright and Mr. Soros are forever in your debt.

===========================================================================

ADDENDUM:  I meant this to be in the blog, but inadvertently left it out.  Sorry about that:

Last night I watched MSNBC for a short time.  And one of its hard left twits - it was either david shuster or keith olbermann - insultingly referred to John Boehner's statement, at the "tea party" rally, in which he mixed up the preamble to the constitution and wording from the declaration of independence.  Boehner was mercilessly ridiculed for this mistake.

Do yourself a favor:  Don't hold your breath waiting for either of these two to ridicule Obama for his gaffe regarding Joe Medicine Crow.

free` Does freedom of the press mean they are free to commit fraud? Because imo that is exactly what they are doing. (11/07/09)


GRACIE LOU FREBUSH LIVES!!

Ken Berwitz

Did you see the movie "Miss Congeniality"?  The one where Sandra Bullock plays a completely unfeminine FBI agent named Gracie Hart, who is transformed into beauty pageant contestant Gracie Lou Frebush, Miss New Jersey?

Do you remember the climax of the movie, in which she winds up punching one of the contestants in the nose?

Well, truth is stranger than fiction.  And here's some, from BBC News:

Miss England relinquishes crown

Miss England Rachel Christie has given up her crown after being arrested on suspicion of a nightclub assault.

 

Organisers of Miss England said the 21-year-old wanted to concentrate on clearing her name.

 

She allegedly punched Miss Manchester, Sara Beverley Jones, 24, in the face in a dispute at a Manchester nightclub.

 

Ms Christie, the first black woman to be crowned Miss England, was arrested on suspicion of assault and has been bailed until January 2010.

 

The beauty queen, niece of former sprinter Linford Christie, is also a heptathlete hoping to compete in the 2012 Olympics.

 

Miss Manchester was allegedly punched in the face after an argument said to be about a TV personality from Sky1's Gladiators programme.

 

It is thought that Miss Jones is an ex-girlfriend of TV gladiator Tornado, whose real name is David McIntosh, and Miss Christie is his current partner.

 

In a statement, Miss England organisers said: "Due to the media attention following the allegations against her, Rachel Christie has now decided to withdraw from the Miss World competition and relinquish her Miss England crown.

 

"Rachel will concentrate on clearing her name and focus on training for the 2012 Olympics until this case is resolved."

 

Greater Manchester Police confirmed that they were called to the Mansion nightclub off Deansgate shortly before 0100GMT on Monday.

 

Police are appealing for witnesses.

Ouch.

If this gladiator guy thinks he has a battle on his hands during the show, wait until he's in the same room with these two.......

Stay tuned.  I have a feeling this ain't over yet.


SAVED JOBS AND REALITY (NEVER THE TWAIN SHALL MEET)

Ken Berwitz

Newt Gingrich hasn't exactly distinguished himself in the past week or two.  He backed the left-wing-activist-posing-as-a-Republican, Diedre "Dede" Scozzafava, in New York's 23rd congressional district, and then watched it blow up in his face.  A conservative third party candidate flew right past Scozzafava, she dropped out of the race - and endorsed her Democratic opponent, which probably gave him the seat.

But Mr. Gingrich, and Vince Haley, are right on the money with their analysis, published by Forbes, of the fraudulent "saved jobs" claim by the Obama administration.  Here it is (the bold print is mine):

Commentary

Obama's 'Lost And Dislocated' Jobs

Newt Gingrich and Vince Haley, 11.06.09, 12:10 PM EST

 

The bailout is hurting--not helping--employment.

The White House announced last week that the $787 billion stimulus package has "saved or created" more than 1 million jobs.

Yet on Friday we learned that unemployment increased to 10.2%, and the number of unemployed Americans rose by 558,000 in October. If you factor in workers who gave up looking or settled for a part-time job, the real unemployment rate--what's known as U6--is an astounding 17.5%.

Look out now for even more claims about "saved or created" jobs from the Obama administration.

As numerous economists have explained, there is no academic or empirical basis for the category of "jobs saved."

Veronique de Rugy of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University says, "no agency--not the Labor Department, not the Treasury, not the Bureau of Labor Statistics--actually calculates 'jobs saved.' "

Dr. Allan Meltzer of Carnegie Mellon University adds, "One can search economic textbooks forever without finding a concept called 'jobs saved.' It doesn't exist for good reason: How can anyone know that his or her job has been saved?"

 The fact is, there is no guarantee that the government actually creates a job when it spends stimulus money. There is no way of knowing whether a worker or firm that is engaged in a stimulus-related activity would have been idle or engaged in some alternative activity. But we do know that as the recovery picks up, individuals engaged in government activity will be unavailable for more productive private activity.

That means that the recovery will have trouble truly lifting off if many of our workers have been committed to questionable make-work projects concocted by Speaker Pelosi and President Obama. A Keynesian might be happy to have government workers digging holes and filling them in, but workers occupied in that manner cannot, at the same time, return to the factory floor. The higher the number of such dislocated workers, the higher the policy challenge going forward.

So if the Obama administration is just going to make up formulations like "saved or created" that have no basis in economics, let us offer our own formulation that is a far more accurate characterization of our economic challenges since the enactment of President Obama's $787 billion stimulus package, even if economists currently don't use this measure.

And that is, we have seen more than 4 million jobs "lost and dislocated" since President Obama and the Democratic Congress enacted the stimulus package in February.

This is a much easier formulation to understand.

You begin with the increase in the number of unemployed Americans since the stimulus was passed in February as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That number is 3.2 million, which represents the jobs that have actually been lost since the stimulus package was enacted.

Then, to have a clear sense of the liabilities created by Obama's misguided policies, we should add to our "jobs lost" number an estimate of private workers who have been "dislocated" by the government. Since stimulus actions are meant to be temporary, knowing how many workers have been "dislocated" is essential to forming a realistic long-run economic outlook. The more dislocated workers that Obama creates today, the higher the number of workers that will have to eventually be reabsorbed by the private sector tomorrow when the stimulus winds down.

So what figure should we use for the number of "dislocated" jobs since the stimulus program was enacted? Thankfully, the White House has, perhaps inadvertently, provided us with an estimate. When the White House says that jobs have been "saved or created" by the stimulus program, then we should say that this is the number of jobs "dislocated" by the stimulus program.

So, using current figures, adding the number of actual jobs lost since February (3.2 million) to the number of jobs that the Obama administration says that they have "saved or created" since February (1 million) means that the economy has "lost and dislocated" more than 4 million jobs since President Obama signed his $787 billion stimulus package.

This "lost and dislocated" formulation is a much more honest assessment of where we are as a country when it comes to understanding job creation, unemployment and the economic challenges ahead under the so-called stimulus package.

If it's not, then the White House should at least explain how "saved or created" is more accurate.

Obviously this "lost or dislocated" number is a tongue-in-cheek creation.  But does it ever bring home the point that "lost or saved" is a hot steamy load of guano, served up by people who think we are so stupid we don't know any better.

Unfortunately, for some of us they happen to be right.  Fortunately, for others of us they happen to be wrong.

Which side of things are you on?  Do you believe reality or the Obama administration?  It is less than a year to the next elections, so you better be sure.


OBAMACARE: BUY IT OR GO TO JAIL

Ken Berwitz

Think I'm kidding?  Well, I wish you were right.  But you aren't. 

Buy ObamaCare or go to jail.  That specific threat is in the bill being voted on today in the house of representatives.  So help me.

And please be assured that this is not some extrapolation.  The threat is specifically there, in so many words.

Don't believe me?  Read these excerpts, which (understandably irate) Republicans on the house ways and means committee have provided.  The bold print is mine:

Washington, Nov 6 -

Today, Ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Committee Dave Camp (R-MI) released a letter from the non-partisan Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) confirming that the failure to comply with the individual mandate to buy health insurance contained in the Pelosi health care bill (H.R. 3962, as amended) could land people in jail.  The JCT letter  makes clear that Americans who do not maintain acceptable health insurance coverage and who choose not to pay the bills new individual mandate tax (generally 2.5% of income), are subject to numerous civil and criminal penalties, including criminal fines of up to $250,000 and imprisonment of up to five years.

In response to the JCT letter, Camp said:  This is the ultimate example of the Democrats command-and-control style of governing buy what we tell you or go to jail.  It is outrageous and it should be stopped immediately.

Key excerpts from the JCT letter appear below:

H.R. 3962 provides that an individual (or a husband and wife in the case of a joint return) who does not, at any time during the taxable year, maintain acceptable health insurance coverage for himself or herself and each of his or her qualifying children is subject to an additional tax. [page 1]

                                                         - - - - - - - - - -                                                   

If the government determines that the taxpayers unpaid tax liability results from willful behavior, the following penalties could apply [page 2]

                                                         - - - - - - - - - -                                                    

Criminal penalties

Prosecution is authorized under the Code for a variety of offenses.  Depending on the level of the noncompliance, the following penalties could apply to an individual:

 Section 7203 misdemeanor willful failure to pay is punishable by a fine of up to $25,000 and/or imprisonment of up to one year.

 Section 7201 felony willful evasion is punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment of up to five years. [page 3]

When confronted with this same issue during its consideration of a similar individual mandate tax, the Senate Finance Committee worked on a bipartisan basis to include language in its bill that shielded Americans from civil and criminal penalties.  The Pelosi bill, however, contains no similar language protecting American citizens from civil and criminal tax penalties that could include a $250,000 fine and five years in jail.

The Senate Finance Committee had the good sense to eliminate the extreme penalty of incarceration.  Speaker Pelosis decision to leave in the jail time provision is a threat to every family who cannot afford the $15,000 premium her plan creates.  Fortunately, Republicans have an alternative that will lower health insurance costs without raising taxes or cutting Medicare, said Camp.

According to the Congressional Budget Office the lowest cost family non-group plan under the Speakers bill would cost $15,000 in 2016.

Do you still wonder why Pelosi and Obama are going back on their promise to give you 72 hours to look this monstrosity over before it is voted on?

Please be aware that coercing people into the purchase of health care (or anything else) under penalty of imprisonment is 100% unconstitutional.  Congress has NO POWER TO DO THIS.  None whatsoever.  Look in the constitution until your eyeballs beg for mercy and you won't find it.

Now where are our wonderful "neutral" media on this?  Where have you seen this other than my blog (I am fervently hoping that at least some readers have an answer, but I'm betting a lot do not). 

How far are the limits going to be exceeded before media remembers why it exists and reports what is going on here?

free` They will use the commerce clause, if they can use it to force a farmer not to grow wheat for his own consumption they sure as hell will find a way to use for insurance. (11/07/09)


THE 100 BEST MOVIE QUOTES

Ken Berwitz

I just got this from my pal Bob, and it is spectacular.

Here are the American Film Institute's 100 best movie quotes:

YouTube - AFI's 100 Movie Quotes (Musical Montage)

Admittedly, I don't agree with them all.  But in 100 quotes you're going to have some disputes.  That's life in the big city.

I do, however, agree that Casablanca (with 6 out of the 100) deserved the #1 spot, because, to me, it had more memorable lines than any other movie I've ever seen.

On the other hand, how could they have left out one of the best quotes in history - and from the Godfather, yet:

"Leave the gun.  Take the cannoli"

Anyway, click on the link, sit back, and enjoy.  I guarantee you'll love it.

free` that is my favorite>>> "Leave the gun. Take the cannoli" (11/07/09)


WE LOOK THE OTHER WAY AS IRAN FACILITATES TERRORISM

Ken Berwitz

This excerpte is from Caroline Glick's excellent column in the Jerusalem Post.  The bold print is mine:

At first glance, this past week seems like a week that Iran's mullahs would very much like to forget. Early Wednesday morning, IDF naval commandos boarded the merchant ship Francop and diverted it to the naval base at Ashdod. There the IDF displayed its cargo of 3,000 rockets and various and other sundry ordnance useful only to terror forces.

The Francop originated in Iran and was intercepted en route to Iran's Hizbullah proxy force in Lebanon via Iran's Arab toady Syria.

As Israel's political leadership noted, this shipment constitutes hard proof that Iran is actively sponsoring terrorist armies in Lebanon, and doing so in full breach of binding UN Security Council resolutions. The commando raid also exposed the depth of Syria's collusion with Iran in arming Hizbullah. After Israel's seizure of the Francop, voices claiming that Syria is but a bit player in the terror game can be laughed off the international stage.

Israel's interception of the Francop came a week after Yemeni forces seized an Iranian ship transporting armor-piercing weapons to Houthi Shi'ite rebels in northern Yemen. As Saudi Arabia's Al-Watan reported over the weekend, Iranian Revolutionary Guards are training Houthi rebels in Eritrea and sponsoring their insurgency against the Yemini regime.

Earlier in October, the Hansa India, which sailed from Iran to Germany, fell under suspicion as it made its way to Syria. It was diverted from Egypt to Malta, where its cargo of bullets and industrial materials intended for weapons production was removed.

Wednesday's raid has had no discernible impact on American policy. The US did not denounce either Syria or Iran for breaching the UN Security Council resolution barring Iranian arms shipments as well as the Security Council resolution prohibiting nations from arming Hizbullah. The US did not state that in response to what Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu called a "smoking gun," it will reconsider its decision to send an ambassador to Damascus or its commitment to appeasing Iran through its nuclear talks in Geneva. The only thing a State Department official could bring himself to say was that the US is concerned about "Hizbullah's efforts to rearm in direct violation of various UN Security Council resolutions," and remark that the groups remains, "a significant threat to peace and security in Lebanon and the region."

Despite the government's energetic efforts to use the Francop interception as a means to convince the nations of the world to unite against Iranian-backed terror, no one seems willing to acknowledge the clear strategic implications of Iran's exports of terror weaponry. Today no one is any more willing to treat Iran as the enemy of the international system it has been for 30 years than they were before Israel exposed the Francop cargo of terror for all the world to see.

And the US-led international community's refusal to take any action against Iran in response to this latest evidence of its rogue behavior is a great victory for the mullahs. Thirty years after their first criminal challenge to the US and the free world as a whole, no one seems to care when their criminality is so graphically exposed. .

Does Iran have any respect for, or concern about, the United States?  Or does it see President Obama as an easy mark, who cannot and will not stand up to them?  Does it worry at all that we will do a thing to stop their production of nuclear weapons, even as they tell us they want Israel wiped off the face of the earth?

You know the answers as well as I do.

But God help Israel if it builds a house on the west bank.  THAT is an affront to world peace.

To the 78% of US Jews, most of whom presumably support Israel, who voted for Barack Obama last year:  I hope you're happy with what you got.

As one of the other 22%, I can assure you I am not.


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