Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 
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Latest Article from Michael Freund

Obama and the 'W' word

September 16, 2014  •  Jerusalem Post

So Washington has decided to go to war against the fanatics of the Islamic State. Or has it? After President Barack Obama addressed the American people from the White House last Wednesday and spelled out his proposed strategy for dealing with the threat posed by IS, his administration quickly tripped and fell headlong into a crater of confusion. Less than 24 hours after Obama's speech, Secretary of State John Kerry, America's top diplomat, flatly denied that the US was going to war against IS (also called ISIS or ISIL), insisting instead that it was simply a "major counterterrorism operation."

Speaking to CBS, Kerry said that "'war' is the wrong terminology."

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Latest Article from Soeren Kern

Portugal's Jihadists

September 14, 2014  •  Gatestone Institute

At least a dozen Portuguese nationals have joined jihadist groups fighting in Iraq and Syria, according to new estimates by Portuguese counter-terrorism officials.

All of the Portuguese jihadists (ten men and two women) are under the age of 30 and most of them are children of immigrants, but so far none of the individuals is known to have returned to live in Portugal.

Portuguese authorities are—for now—downplaying the threat these individuals may pose to Portugal upon their return home from the battlefields.

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Pundicity

Latest Article from Judith Miller

Ukraine president: no military solution to conflict with Russia

September 12, 2014  •  Fox News

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Friday that there was no military solution to his country's conflict with Russia and that Ukraine needed European economic and political support to help avoid an escalation.

The Ukrainian president, who struck a cease-fire with Russia last Friday, said he intends to give Russian-backed Ukrainian separatists in the east greater autonomy over their domestic affairs and that he hoped his "fragile" cease-fire with Moscow would hold.

Russia, which has denied sending combat troops to Ukraine, has been withdrawing its forces, which are now estimated to have dropped to as low as 1,000.

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Pundicity

Latest Article from Clifford May

Thirteen years after 9/11

September 10, 2014  •  The Washington Times

Do not call what happened 13 years ago this week a tragedy. It was a terrorist atrocity, an act of war and a war crime. These are very different.

The self-proclaimed jihadis responsible for hijacking commercial jets and using them as missiles targeted the World Trade Center because it was a Western financial capital, a place where men and women of many ethnicities and religions worked in peace to create prosperity. Another plane was flown into the Pentagon — the brains of the greatest liberation army the world has even known. One more jet was meant to hit the political heart of the Free World — the Capitol or the White House — but Americans on that flight refused to surrender and thereby won a battle.

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Pundicity

Latest Article from Jonathan Schanzer

Where the Shadiest Players Find a Home

September 8, 2014  •  The Tower

Speaking at conference of Islamic scholars in Istanbul in August, senior Hamas leader-in-exile Saleh al-Arouri announced that his terrorist group had carried out the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teens in the West Bank in June. The group had vociferously denied its involvement in the attack at the time, and the Israeli arrest of several Hamas operatives contributed to the tensions that ultimately yielded this summer's Gaza war. Some even claimed that an unwarranted Israeli crackdown on Hamas directly prompted this most recent round of violence.

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Latest Article from Tevi Troy

Heading Off a Bigger Ebola Catastrophe

September 1, 2014  •  The Wall Street Journal

The Ebola virus, which has already killed more than 1,500 people since the epidemic began earlier this year, is wreaking havoc in West Africa, leaving death, economic hardship, social stigma and civil unrest in its wake.

In response, the Obama administration has stressed that the disease is highly unlikely to spread inside America. Given international travel, we will certainly see cases diagnosed here, and perhaps even experience some isolated clusters of disease. For now, though, the administration's assurances are generally correct: Health-care workers in the U.S. and other advanced Western nations maintain infection controls that can curtail the spread of non-airborne diseases like Ebola.

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Pundicity

Latest Article from Jeff Stier

Calling for a different approach to tobacco and nicotine regulation

August 24, 2014  •  EuroActiv

Cigarette smoking is the most harmful form of tobacco use. Alternatives to smoking that supply users with, yes, addictive, but not particularly harmful nicotine, are significantly less dangerous.

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Pundicity

Latest Article from M. Zuhdi Jasser

I was bullied for criticizing Hamas

August 23, 2014  •  AZ Central

What happens in Syria, Egypt, Iraq or Gaza has an impact every day right here in the Valley.

Even in America, leading Muslim organizations and clerics bully with threats of ostracism those Muslims who dare to dissent. Old-guard ideologues, too, used to monopoly control, make it crystal clear to their Muslim critics: Take us on and we will make an example of you as a traitor to the Muslim community (the ummah).

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Pundicity

Latest Article from Timothy Spangler

Dictatorial dynasty in the making?

August 22, 2014  •  The Orange County Register

A dynasty is in the works in troubled Zimbabwe, rather than the comprehensive change that is much needed. This week, the wife of long-standing President Robert Mugabe was appointed to a high-profile, senior position in the ruling Zanu (PF) party. Grace Mugabe was appointed secretary of the party's Women's League, which entitles her to a seat on the party's governing politburo. The women's group also endorsed her husband, president since 1987, as their preferred candidate for the 2018 elections.

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Latest Article from Steven Emerson

The President's True Colors Finally Revealed

August 17, 2014  •  Jerusalem Online

When I first glanced at the headline on today's Jerusalem Online and reports in the Jerusalem Post and other Israeli newspapers, I thought they must have been a satire: "Washington officials have told Egypt that the US will guarantee Israel's commitment to any agreement signed." But it was not a satire. This was deadly serious, confirmed by other Israeli newspapers and sources in Cairo.

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Latest Article from Asaf Romirowsky

Gaza: How we got here and what next?

August 15, 2014  •  YNet News

Despite the conviction in Israel that its military actions against Hamas in Gaza are justified, the notion that this third Gaza war in the past six years has been a consequence of the failure to conclude a peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority is widely accepted across the globe.

For Palestinians, the argument continues, there is no choice but resistance and confrontation since diplomacy and non-violence have not ended the occupation. For that reason, many Palestinians claim that Hamas is fighting not simply to lift the blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip but also to give them their freedom.

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Latest Article from Ilan Berman

Cutting The Caliphate Down To Size

August 14, 2014  •  National Review Online

Is America headed back to Iraq? On August 7, President Obama took the first step in that direction when he authorized the use of air strikes to prevent the further advance of the militant Islamic group once known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) and now known as the Islamic State. Since then, the U.S. military has commenced a limited bombing campaign against Islamic State detachments in northern Iraq and added 130 military advisers to the 300 already stationed in the country. The decision reflects a stark reality. In recent weeks, the Islamic State has cut a bloody swath across Iraq, capturing and holding territory at an unprecedented rate. As a result, the Washington Post reports, the group "now controls resources and territory unmatched in the history of extremist organizations." The current effort, however, appears to be as far as the White House is willing to go — at least for the moment. Having staked its political legitimacy on an exit from Iraq, the Obama administration is leery of doing much more. As a result, a true strategy for rolling back the Islamic State's advance is still sorely lacking.

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Latest Article from Michael Rubin

Arming Rebels Wasn't the Only Option

August 14, 2014  •  U.S. News and World Report

Syrian President Bashar Assad winning the Syrian civil war is akin to dying of a heart attack, but a Syrian opposition victory is the equivalent of dying from cancer. Unfortunately, the time for preventive medicine was more than three years ago.

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