Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Article from Soeren Kern

Germany Submits to Sharia Law
"A parallel justice system has established itself in Germany"

December 1, 2016  •  Gatestone Institute

A German court has ruled that seven Islamists who formed a vigilante patrol to enforce Sharia law on the streets of Wuppertal did not break German law and were simply exercising their right to free speech.

The ruling, which effectively legitimizes Sharia law in Germany, is one of a growing number of instances in which German courts are — wittingly or unwittingly — promoting the establishment of a parallel Islamic legal system in the country.

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Latest Article from Michael Freund

Why is France again labeling Jews?

December 1, 2016  •  Jerusalem Post

Last week, as Palestinian and Arab terrorists were busy setting fires all across Israel, France decided to join the fray by committing an act of diplomatic arson against the Jewish state.

In a move as hateful as it is hypocritical, French President Francois Hollande's government chose to become the first European Union state to begin to enforce guidelines which single out Jewish-owned businesses in the Golan, Judea and Samaria by requiring that their products bear special labels of origin.

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Latest Article from Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi

review of The Internationalization of ISIS: The Muslim State in Iraq and Syria

Winter 2017  •  Middle East Quarterly

Israeli's book reads more like an attempt to cash in on interest in the Islamic State than a serious investigation into the phenomenon. Besides being a re-articulation of the author's own prejudices (e.g., there is no such thing as "moderate Islam"), much of the book comprises rambling disquisitions that provide no insight into the Islamic State; long paraphrases of single articles written and published by others; precious little by way of citations to support his arguments, and virtually no engagement of primary sources in Arabic.

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Latest Article from Judith Miller

The Best Little Art Colony in Texas

November 30, 2016  •  City Journal

In 2007, Marfa, Texas, population 2,485, went dark. Unable to pay the town's electricity bills, the newly elected mayor and city council voted to turn off Marfa's streetlights—all of them. "Winters here are dark and harsh," recalled Mayor Daniel P. Dunlap, who owns Marfa's sole appliance and furniture store and is now in the last year of his fifth two-year term as mayor. "We went six months that winter without lights. Folks were mighty unhappy." After raising utility rates and replacing power-guzzling bulbs with more efficient substitutes, Dunlap was able to restore the lighting in stages, light by light, street by street, starting with those lining the bus route of its only public school.

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Latest Article from Clifford May

An American renewal

November 30, 2016  •  The Washington Times

Slowly and perhaps even surely, Donald Trump is pulling together a team he believes can help him achieve his goals. Which are what exactly?

The most basic are given to him in Article II, Section One, Clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution. On Jan. 20, 2017, Mr. Trump will swear to "faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States," and to the best of his "ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Faithful execution implies a presidential obligation to enforce the laws of the land. What about laws he objects to as a matter of principle or policy? He can work with Congress to repeal them. But to disregard them (as one might argue President Obama has done) is to violate his oath.

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Latest Article from Michael Rubin

Erdogan Makes a Bid for the Military

November 30, 2016  •  Newsweek

Much of the reason why so many diplomats and analysts got the trajectory of Turkey so wrong for so long is that they focused on the cosmetic over the substantive.

They focused upon the debate about headscarves in schools and universities, but ignored changes to the makeup of the executive board of the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund, even though it was the latter which allowed Prime Minister (and now President) Recep Tayyip Erdogan to target his opponents' financial holdings and business interests.

Many analysts—whether out of laziness or ideological antipathy toward those raising alarms—also dismissed concerns that Erdogan had a transformative religious agenda.

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Latest Article from Tevi Troy

Netanyahu learned the Carmel fire's lessons

November 29, 2016  •  The Times of Israel

The fires in Israel are now dying down, and Israelis can breathe a sigh of relief that the worst of the crisis is over. As focus shifts from fire fighting to helping those who have lost their homes, it is worth examining Israel's response to see how the country has evolved on fighting fire since 2010. That year's Carmel forest blaze killed 44 Israelis and prompted a much needed reexamination of Israel's approach to fires. Many nations fail in response to crises. The real test is whether they can learn from failure and improve in the future.

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Latest Article from Asaf Romirowsky

The United Nations' Palestinian refugee industry

November 24, 2016  •  National Post

Of all the problems that dominate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, only one ensures that the conflict will never end: the growth in the number of Arab-Palestinian refugees. Western governments have enabled this industry.

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Latest Article from Jeff Stier

The EPA Shows Again That It's an Affront to Common Sense

November 23, 2016  •  National Review Online

For decades, in administrations Democratic and Republican alike, the Environmental Protection Agency has been a paragon of waste, fraud, and abuse, a corrupt taxpayer-funded Evil Empire. "Science" there is just a tool to be manipulated in order to advance radical anti-technology and anti-industry agendas, even if it means distorting the intent of statutes and affronting common sense.

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Latest Article from Ilan Berman

Trump And Iran
What The Next Administration Can Do

November 16, 2016  •  Foreign Affairs

The United States' relationship with Iran tops the list of foreign policy issues that will confront President-elect Donald Trump when he takes office in January. Like many of the other Republican presidential candidates, Trump was an early and staunch opponent of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the controversial nuclear deal concluded last summer between six world powers and Iran. But Trump took up contradictory positions on the deal over the course of his campaign, at times promising to tear it up and at others suggesting he would simply amend it. As Trump readies his administration, he is likely to favor the latter course. For a host of reasons, it may be impractical for his administration to scuttle the agreement outright. Still, there is much that Washington can do with respect to Iran, especially by more rigorously enforcing the nuclear deal and constraining Iranian expansionism.

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Latest Article from Jonathan Schanzer

Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement attracting groups with terrorist ties

November 2, 2016  •  The Hill

This week, George Mason University is hosting a conference promoting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, an anti-Israel campaign that has recently swelled its ranks by participating in "solidarity work" with sympathetic organizations. But as the BDS campaign has grown, its "big tent" philosophy may have attracted organizations with ties to terrorism.

In May 2016, for example, the Miami-based organization Dream Defenders flew a group of activists that included a Florida lawmaker to Israel and the Palestinian territories. While in the West Bank, participants were led by a tour guide identified with the terrorist group Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

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