Archive for the ‘Middle East’ Category
On our podcasts all this week, Steve Clark and I have been addressing “authenticity.” Authenticity is the opposite of political correctness. We have killed authenticity in this country by allowing political correctness to govern how we express ourselves. Political correctness is the muzzle that gags the First Amendment of the United States Constitution’s right to free speech. Nowhere can the chilling and deadly effects of political correctness be more clearly demonstrated than in the past month as it pertains to two diverse issues: the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the spread of Ebola.
Israel probably has the most advanced national security system in place of any country in the world. It has to because its citizens live daily with an imminent threat of death by acts of terror. Consequently, no airline is safer than El Al and no airport safer than Ben Gurion in Tel Aviv. Yet, during the recent conflict, the United States government by way of our State Department, shut down all flights to Israel on the erroneous presumption that a missile from Gaze might take down an incoming aircraft. This despite the fact that, even if this preposterous assumption were true, El Al was totally avoiding Gaza airspace during the conflict by circling incoming and outgoing aircraft to the West rather than the usual eastern flight path. I know this to be true because one month ago, during the war, I flew into and out of Ben Gurion.
But the truth has no place in the world of political correctness.
Now, Ebola, the disease which we were assured could not come to our shores, has arrived in Dallas by way of an infected Liberian traveler visiting family. Logic and common sense both dictate that all flights in and out of West Africa be suspended until this disease is under control or we have in place functional and effective means of prohibiting infected persons from entering the country.
But logic and common sense have no place in an environment of political correctness.
The same terrorists that commit global acts of jihad, slaughtering and beheading in the name of their God, are free to enter the United States through an open border with Mexico, the same open border that infected persons with tuberculosis and even Ebola are free to enter. Prioritizing safety measures that would secure the border and prevent both terrorists and sickness from entering our country would be the sane thing to do.
But there is no room or call for sanity in a politically correct culture.
It won’t take an EMP or pandemic to annihilate us. All we need do is continue to deny the demands of reality, worry more about not offending Muslims and foreigners than securing our nation, and live in fear of being authentic in expressing truth to power.
It’s that simple.
I have long lived by the certainty that everything is energy. This includes money which, by logical extension of thought, includes the economy. The evolution and advancement of humanity has always been tied to its understanding, harnessing and application of energy. Since human nature, in its lower form, contains elements of both selfishness and greed, there are those who throughout time have sought to understand, harness and apply to their sole benefit, the production and distribution of money for the purpose of concentrating power among the few.
What we witness Hamas inflicting in Gaza, and what occurs throughout the radical Islamic controlled regions of the world, is a combination of physical and psychological enslavement. Through terror, brute force and total disregard for quality of life (or life itself) such “leadership” profits and prospers while sacrificing the very people it claims to be representing.
We in the West should not be quick to judge how the Palestinian population could allow and participate in such a diabolical arrangement as we in the United States are living in an “economic glass house.” Instead of physical and psychological enslavement we in the West have been blindly cooperating in our own financial and psychological enslavement.
By way of understanding and controlling the means of production, distribution and regulation of the energy of money, and the mind-altering control of the means of dissemination of information by media…elites and power brokers in this country have enslaved us as surely as those in countries we condemn for lacking humanitarian policies. The only difference is the subtlety and masking of true intent as executed in the West. While Islamists use kidnapping and torture as their weapons of choice, the U.S. government and global power brokers use the Federal Reserve, the World Bank and social engineering as theirs.
What humanity must do, and do in a hurry before escape (freedom) is no longer a viable option, is to plunge the stake of truth into the heart of the beast of enslavement that has been sucking our life’s blood from us for at least the last 100 years. We can do this by awakening to the truth of what’s happening and taking a lesson from the ancient Israelites who were economically and psychologically enslaved to Pharaoh: they opted out in a hurry.
We too, must now hurry to opt out of a corrupt and diabolical system that manipulates us through the illusions of “lack and fear” and which have caused us to become indebted and addicted to a fiction that “more and faster” is better.
You must opt out of the lie that you are only one person who has no ability to know what is happening to you and lack a voice to articulate that knowing.You must opt out of fear and all its progeny…victimization, depression, frustration, impotence, rage, violence, and hate.
Step into who you are. Step into your connection with all that is good and true. Step into the memory of what freedom feels like and reclaim your birthright.
Slow down. Self-source. Have courage. You have the answer and you know the way out.
We are living in extraordinary times. There isn’t anyone I know who does not feel the profound upheaval and changes we are experiencing both globally and personally. One of the awakenings taking place is the realization that we are free to see, and therefore create, a world of our choosing. We need not be enslaved any longer to someone else’s reality or to the perspective fed us daily by a variety of media outlets and politicians.
Which leads me to write about “compassionate war.” I realize the phrase itself seems like an oxymoron. How can you have something as violent and destructive as war and see it in terms of compassion? The answer lies in the current conflict between Israel and Hamas.
My focus is not the politics of the conflict nor is it the terrorist designation of Hamas. It’s about Israel and the manner in which it has chosen to prepare for and proceed with this inevitable clash.
In two weeks of fighting, Israel has agreed unilaterally to 4 separate halts in the armed fighting. Two of those were humanitarian requests, one by Hamas itself, which Israel honored and Hamas did not. Israel literally built a hospital at one of the border-crossing check-points to treat any wounded Palestinians who would need treatment. No one has showed up. Israel offered and readied millions of shekels, (Israeli currency is 3.5 :1 as against the US dollar) so at least one million dollars, of medical supplies and equipment to deliver to Gaza but the Palestinian Authority rejected the offer.
Israel has spent millions of dollars building bomb shelters throughout Israel and in these past two weeks, 75% of its population has had to use them. In Gaza, tens of thousands of tons of cement and building supplies intended for schools, office buildings and homes were diverted by Hamas over the past five years to burrow and build elaborate tunnels underground from Gaza to Israel to be used in a mass terror attack scheduled for this coming September 25th, the first night of the Jewish New Year.
Perhaps most astonishingly, Israel has done what no other nation in the history of the world has done. It gives advance warning to Gaza’s citizens where and when they will strike. By way of leaflets dropped by the Israeli Air Force, cell phone text messages and twitter postings, Israel gives the Palestinians every opportunity to flee a known missile launch site before striking. Hamas has deliberately positioned those sites in homes, schools, graveyards, and mosques while ordering Palestinian men, women and children to remain where they are despite certainty of injury or death.
Just today, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that any lasting truce will require 1) the “demilitarization of Gaza and social and economic relief for the Palestinian people there.” Even in the midst of war, the Israeli’s are looking out for the well-being of their adversary.
All civilized people who revere life want a world without war. However, as long as there remain uncivilized people who glorify violence and death there will be a need for defensive action.
In the Torah, the Old Testament, it talks about the nation of Israel being a “light unto the Nations.” I think it is fair to say that in a defensive war thrust upon it, Israel has and continues to act in ways that exemplify how even in the darkest of times, honorable men and women can shine a light upon their humanity and reflect for the world our connectedness to one another.
Compassion and reality are not mutually exclusive. Although, when examining the U.S. government’s response to the current invasion by illegal aliens and the world’s response to the current war between Israel and Hamas one can only wonder.
As a lawyer, there’s a saying I’ve always liked: “Facts are pesky things.” They demand acknowledgement and, in the absence of opposing facts, stand as legal truth. We have some border facts confronting us so let’s give them their due:
1. The U.S. Border is the line of demarcation for identifying those legally residing within its parameters (U.S. citizens) and those living outside those parameters (foreigners).
2. The Constitution of the United States leaves room for interpretation as to who is obligated to enforce the U.S. borders (the Executive branch or the States) but it’s undisputed that it’s one, the other, or both.
3. The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA) sets forth the legal requirement and process for entering the United States and subsequently obtaining citizenship.
4. With limited and narrowly defined exceptions, people entering the country in violation of the INA commit a crime.
5. The Presidential Oath of Office is explicitly clear that it is the obligation of the President of the United States to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
6. The Balfour Declaration of 1917 created two territories: a homeland for the Jewish People (Israel) and Palestine.
7. Every Arab nation rejected the establishment of the Arab state and refused to recognize the legitimacy of the Israeli state.
8. In 1948, following war between the Arabs and the Jews, the State of Israel formally came into existence
9. Arab nations and Islamic terror groups have been the aggressors and waged repeated wars and terrorist attacks on Israel and its citizens since 1948.
10. In the 1967 Six Day War, Israel was attacked by surprise by 6 Arab nations, prevailed in that war, and subsequently returned to Egypt over 26,000 square miles of territory Israel captured in return for peace with Egypt.
11. Israel subsequently relinquished all sovereignty over the Gaza strip to Palestinians.
12. Arabs and Islamic terrorists have been continuously attacking Israel on a daily basis from both the Sinai and Gaza.
13. Children do not wage war of their own accord nor do they willingly violate borders and should not be used as pawns to further a political agenda.
Let’s temporarily feed, clothe and provide emergency medical attention to the tens of thousands of illegal foreign children crossing the U.S. border. Then as quickly as possibly send them back to their countries of origin.
Israel has a right to defend itself while protecting and maintaining its legal borders. In 1967, then Israeli Prime Minister Gold Meir said, “There will be peace in the Middle East when the Arabs love their children more than they hate us.”
Compassion and reality are not mutually exclusive.
It’s certainly easy to become frustrated, angered, even enraged at national and global events. Terrorists are summarily released from Guantanamo to inevitably return to their pursuit of our destruction; original IRS files under investigation, allegedly lacking any archived copies, suddenly disappear and the hard drive that housed them is destroyed; literally thousands of illegal immigrants pour across our southern border daily while the Federal government, charged with our protection, stands by idle and silent; the most radical of radical Islamic terrorists murderously and savagely tear their way through Iraq seizing cities and imposing Sharia Law as they go, negating the efforts we made and the lives we sacrificed to bring that nation a chance for freedom; food and energy prices soar upward while we are told there is no inflation and one hundred million, one third of our population, are unemployed.
Overwhelmed people feel victimized and are susceptible to manipulation by anyone promising an end to their frustrations. Enraged people are reactive, fail to reason and consequently, think before they act. Neither false prophets nor indiscriminate actions can serve us now.
What’s needed is very simple, if not necessarily easy:
1. Pull back to your most basic and immediate needs and environment.
2. Ask yourself, “How will gratuitous anger serve me?
3. Ask yourself,” What can I do to simplify my life and reduce stress?”
4. Reach out to neighbors, friends or colleagues to establish a community of support for one another.
5. Commit to not allowing yourself to be seduced into blame, violence or hatred of others.
6. Identify and stand firm in your core beliefs regardless of their political correctness…so long as those beliefs are not at the expense of another.
7. Hold fast to faith in humankind’s awakening to the realization that united we stand and divided we fall as All are One.
8. Allow truth to emerge from within you rather than allow an agenda to be imposed upon you.
Every historical period has its challenges. This one is no exception. What causes pain and suffering is not change. It’s our resistance to change. The world is changing in rapid and profound ways. Old patterns of behavior and correction will not work. When we switched from horse and buggy to the combustion engine, you could not fuel that engine with oats…although those oats worked just fine under the old system.
Rather than judge who did what and how we got here, let’s use our intellects, our hearts, and our individual uniqueness to co-create solutions. The dawn of a new day brings the opportunity to either repeat yesterday or live today anew.
Free Will. You get to choose.
The next time Secretary of State John Kerry chooses to describe Israel as heading towards an apartheid state he would do well to closely examine the reaction of world Jewry to L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling’s bigoted remarks about African Americans. There is probably no other People on earth, living in or out of Israel, more sensitive to bigotry, bias, religious persecution and hate speech than Jews.
Sadly, the Secretary’s comment was founded in either 1) ignorance of historical fact or 2) his own apparent bias about Israel, its people and its government. I hope it is the former, although in a position of such gravitas requiring heightened diplomatic skills neither is acceptable nor excusable.
Arab Israeli’s make up approximately 20% of the population. Historically, Arabs living within Israel since 1949 have enjoyed more freedoms than Arabs living in any Arab speaking country. Since 1949, Israel has seen 70 Arab Israeli’s elected to the Knesset (with 13 serving currently). Arabs serve in the Supreme Court, the Cabinet, the Israeli Defense Forces, the Israeli police, as emergency medical service providers, doctors, businessmen, entertainers, television personalities and in a multitude of positions within every aspect of civil society. In 2004, Former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon ordered that every public company have at least one Arab Israeli on its Board of Directors.
Does this seriously lead anyone other than Secretary Kerry (or Arab extremists seeking the annihilation of the State of Israel) to conclude that an apartheid Israeli nation is a foregone conclusion? I think not.
Personally, I stand with former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, who today said that “children are running our foreign policy” and with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) who yesterday called for the resignation of Secretary Kerry.
Ignorance is only bliss when it does no harm.
“Lone Survivor” opened in theaters this past weekend to become the second highest grossing movie ever in the month of January. It’s both a war film and a profoundly moving account of ethics, determination and sheer courage in the face of overwhelming circumstances. Yet, the most important message of the movie (and the book upon which the screenplay is based) occurs off screen.
“It went bad for us over there, but that was our job. That’s what we did. We didn’t complain about it. We never gave up. We never felt like we were losing…until we were actually dead.”
What first caught my attention about Mr. Luttrell’s response was his use of the words “we” and “our.” His choice of pronouns may not seem all that extraordinary…after all, these four men trained and performed as a unit. However, it’s the last half of the last sentence that riveted me.
“…until we were dead.”
Marcus Luttrell returns to us to do much more than write a book or make a movie. He returns to us to personify the living manifestation of the unifying principle of Oneness. Four men died on that mountain in Afghanistan, not three. You know that through Mr. Luttrell’s statement. His experience was that “we were dead.” However, four men crawled off that mountain as well and have survived to tell their story through Mr. Luttrell.
Yes, it is a story of war and its ravages as well as of courage, compassion and endurance in the face of overwhelming odds. But above all else, it is a story of our connectedness to one another. What happens to one of us happens to all of us. Until we own that reality, we will continue to tear one another apart both in and out of war.
The solutions we seek to the world’s challenges are not political, they are of the heart. True unity is no better expressed or understood than in the manner that Mr. Luttrell speaks of his/their experience, his/their bond and, most tellingly, his/their deaths. Four men went to Afghanistan and all four have returned to speak to us with one voice.
If Marcus Luttrell still questions why he made it back, my prayer is that he wonders no longer. Every morning that he awakens his three friends awaken as well. It is the highest form of resurrection and it is his purpose to exemplify this reality for the rest of us. I, for one, am eternally grateful to him for the integrity and commitment he brings to the calling. May the Nation, and the world, be awake enough to seize this profound moment to finally understand what divinity in action is all about.
There is only One of Us
Listen to Carole discuss Marcus Lutrell in an excerpt from her radio show “An Hour of Inspirational Gold” on BlogTalk Radio.
Note: click on the gray play button below
Yes, it was a terrible tragedy that took place at the D.C. Navy Yard yesterday. Yes, there are those who will use the event as yet the latest call for “gun control.” I wonder if those same gun control advocates are nearly as upset about the “gun control waiver” that President Obama granted himself yesterday.
In case you remain unaware of what President Obama did yesterday (I would not be surprised if you are unaware given the media’s silence on the issue thus far) he waived a law that prohibited the United States from transferring weapons to designated terrorist groups. No, I didn’t mistype anything nor did you just misread anything. The President of the United States waived a law that would stop him from providing weapons to Al Qaeda in Syria. The Syrian opposition, by our own estimate and admission, is made up of 15% Al Qaeda. We are knowingly and deliberately arming those who brought down the Twin Towers.
An egomaniacal lust for power, total disregard for the Constitution and an ideological framework that disdains all that is truly American. That’s what Benghazi was all about and, having gotten away with it, he proceeds now with impunity. He simply doesn’t want to be found guilty of a crime. So our President abolished the law that would have made him a criminal. It’s as absurd as if the killer in the Navy Yard had been able to revoke the laws against assault and murder just prior to committing…assault and murder.
We mourn the senseless loss of lives in yesterday’s killing spree in D.C.
I suggest you prepare to mourn the loss of millions of lives that will result from President Obama’s stroke of the pen yesterday in that same city. His was a shameful and criminal act that should be prosecuted and quickly.
History repeats itself. Unfortunately this axiom is true when humanity fails to learn the error of its ways. A demoralized populace in the Weimar Republic was hungry for food, self-respect and leadership. Enter Adolph Hitler who had all the right buzz words and charisma to lead sheep to slaughter. By sheep, I refer not just to the Jews but also to “the good people of Germany” who followed their Pied Piper all the way to devastation by the Allied forces.
We, here in the United States, have been on a slippery slope for decades. Never mind the sociological and economic reasons why. Suffice it to say it is truth. Now, having experienced staggering unemployment, an over-extended and weakened military, a dollar of diminishing value, and dangerously incompetent leadership, Vladimir Putin enters stage left via a New York Times op-ed piece.
Putin has the hubris to lecture Americans on just behavior as he arrives cloaked in language that belies his own history of repression and thuggery not to mention religious and human rights oppression. Yet, in the absence of real leadership, the forcefulness of his conviction as devious as it may be makes this one-eyed monster appear as a King in the Land of the Blind.
We, here in the United States, have become the Land of the Blind. We turned not only a blind eye but also a deaf ear to the lies and manipulations of those to whom we entrusted power even as we knew in our hearts they were abusing it and us.
We have arrived at the door to our own demise.
Do not touch the handle. Do not think there is any way back from what is on the other side. Turn now. Run as far and as fast as you can in the other direction. Leave Putin and Obama behind. Become your own leader until such time as you come upon one who is genuine and does not seek the position. There you will have found meritorious leadership.
In the meantime, act swiftly and keep an eye out for John Galt. Let’s also pray that neither he nor Galt’s Gulch are fiction.
They want us divided. No, this isn’t a conspiracy post. It’s an epiphany.
You know the old saying, “United we stand, divided we fall?” Well, it’s old. Very old. It goes back to Aesop, the Ancient Greek story teller who lived between 620 and 654 B.C. Maybe it’s older than that. I suspect it is because it holds a fundamental secret that is the difference between destruction and survival…between lack and prosperity.
I’d been thinking about the seeming deterioration of race relations in this country over the past few years and wondering what was the impetus? The more I thought about it the more I decided that there really is no racial deterioration…just the promotion of a false sense of one by the media and others who have more to gain, and more to retain, by our division than by our unification.
After 9/11 we saw what we were made of. We experienced our connection and our love for one another. We each know that we are all One in humanity. We know it and we exhibit it whenever we are called upon to do so…and sometimes even when we are not. But we each feel insecure and alone in some ways as well. Maybe it’s just the impermanence of life as we know it that gives us a feeling of unease that is so easy to exploit.
And exploit our insecurity they do.
Those of us on a spiritual or God-focused path know that we are at a tipping point of understanding from deep within our hearts such as the world has never seen. And those who would rather that awakening not occur will do everything and anything in their power to make certain we do not get there. The tool most within their power is division by way of fear. Therefore, in order to to strengthen their grip on humanity and retain the positions of power they have cheated, lied and stolen to achieve, they are pulling out the “big guns”…figuratively and literally. War is on the horizon. Whether its nation against nation in the Middle East or black against white in the West. Divide and conquer.
Gandhi had it right. So did Martin Luther King. We, the People, can overcome. But our only hope is the acknowledgement of our Oneness and the expression of that knowing through Love. Without it we remain divided. And divided we fall.
Let each of us be the change we wish to see in the world, as Ghandi admonished. Let us be loving and truthful in our daily dealings with those we encounter. Let us not perpetuate the worst of humankind by being part of it.
I have a Catholic friend who just returned from Amstedam where she visited The Anne Frank House. She asked me, “How could people do that to one another?” “They forgot there is only One of Us and that we’re born for the sole purpose of remembering that single, life altering fact” was my reply.
Remember now. Unite now. Love now.