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Vladimir Putin began his much-anticipated interview on Thursday night by offering a more than 30-minute, counterfactual history lesson to the bemused Tucker Carlson. The former Fox New host’s interjections (how is this relevant, Mr. President?) were swiftly shot down by the Russian leader: “Are we going to have a serious talk or a show?” Putin’s show, it seemed. Beyond the foray into the Russian president’s version of history, here are the five key and most surprising moments of the more than two-hour sit-down. Read more here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/us/politi...
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“Christians Tortured, Forced to Recite Islamic Creed in Pakistan,” Morning Star News, February 1, 2024:
LAHORE, Pakistan (Christian Daily International–Morning Star News) – An Islamist cleric presided over the forced conversion of two Christians into Sialkot District, Pakistan, after they were tortured into reciting the Islamic conversion creed, sources said.
Azam Masih, 28, and his brother, Nadeem Masih, were abducted, beaten with iron rods and pressured to convert to Islam on Jan. 22 in the Kotli Loharan area, said Adil Ghauri, chairman of the Masihi Baidari Tehreek or Movement for Christian Awakening.
Azam Masih was working at his tailoring shop in the Kharota Syedan market when Naseem Shah and accomplices held him at gunpoint and forcibly took him to the house of another suspect, Sunny Shah, Ghauri said.
“The assailants accused Azam of patronizing ‘wrongdoings’ in the area and started beating him with iron rods,” Ghauri told the Christian Daily International-Morning Star News, adding that the suspects later abducted his younger brother, brought him to the house and subjected him to the same torture. “The accused then forced the two Christians to recite the Kalima [proclamation of Islamic conversion] if they wanted to save their lives, threatening to kill them if they refused. The tortured brothers had no choice but to surrender to this demand.”
The suspects also recorded a video statement from the two brothers in which they were forced to say that they were converting to Islam of their own free will, Ghauri said. He added that the assailants also snatched mobile phones and other belongings from the two brothers before releasing them.
The rights activist said the brothers and their impoverished Christian family chose to keep silent about the ordeal, as the suspects had warned them against contacting police.
“We came to know about this incident on Jan. 24 and immediately contacted the family,” Ghauri said. “After much persuasion, we were able to convince the family to file a First Information Report [FIR] with the police, as keeping silent would have only encouraged the perpetrators to target more Christians living in the village.”
More than 300 Christian families are settled there, he added.
Kotli Loharan police arrested a Muslim cleric alleged to have conducted the conversion and registered charges against the suspects of kidnapping, punishable by death or life imprisonment; theft with intention to cause injury or death, punishable by up to 10 years in prison; threatening death or grievous injury, punishable by up to seven years in prison; causing injury to extort a confession, punishable by up to 10 years in prison; and acts committed by several persons in furtherance of common intention.
The suspects, Naseem Shah and Sunny Shah, have criminal backgrounds and have been involved in inciting hatred against Christians, Ghauri said.
“This is not the first time Christians have been targeted in that area,” Ghauri said. “In fact, after the Aug. 16, 2023 attacks in Jaranwala, at least two-three attempts were made to stir religious tension by throwing torn pages of the Quran near Christian homes. Had the police and district administration taken timely action against the perpetrators of those incidents, this incident could have been prevented.”…
What do you get when you massacre over a thousand people, rape, behead, torture and kidnap everyone Jewish, Christian or non-Arab in sight? International diplomatic recognition.
Secretary of State Tony Blinken has reportedly begun conducting a review of options for recognizing a ‘Palestinian’ state after the war. The State Department has claimed there are no policy changes, but that may yet be more diplomatic doubletalk.
UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron, brought in after PM Rishi Sunak ousted Minister Suella Braverman for speaking out against the pro-Hamas rallies, published an op-ed calling for a “pause” in the fighting, exchanging Israeli hostages for captured Hamas terrorists, and providing “safe passage” to “key Hamas leaders” and “the people responsible for October 7” to leave Gaza. After that he announced that his government might recognize an Islamic terror state.
“We – with allies – will look at the issue of recognising a Palestinian state, including at the United Nations,” he claimed. “That could be one of the things that helps to make this process irreversible.”
Why the urgent need for the “irreversible” recognition of a terror state?
According to Cameron, “we must give the people of the West Bank and Gaza the political perspective of a credible route to a Palestinian state and a new future.”
The “people” in question have already been polled on what they want from the future.
A poll found that 74% of ‘Palestinians’ supported the Hamas atrocities of Oct 7 and a majority “extremely” supported them. Only 12% were against. 83% of those in the West Bank, under the Palestinian Authority and the immediate beneficiaries of statehood, supported the crimes.
98% in Gaza and the West Bank said that they felt ‘pride’ as ‘Palestinians’ over the war. 74% expected the fighting to end with the defeat of Israeli forces in Gaza. Only 17% supported a two-state solution, while 77.7% wanted to destroy Israel and replace it with a ‘Palestinian’ state.
This is what supporting the “Palestinian people” with a “Palestinian state” really means.
Former Minister Theresa Villiers who, unlike Cameron, had backed Brexit, warned that “accelerating unilateral recognition of Palestinian state would be to reward Hamas’ atrocities.”
And that’s exactly right.
The only reason any of this is being discussed is the Oct 7 Hamas attack. Recognizing a terror state after one of the worst acts of terror in history will retroactively validate everything.
Hamas will be able to claim victory, and so will the ‘Palestinians’ who took part in it, cheered it and supported it to a larger degree than Germans supported Hitler.
The Palestinian Authority, on which hopes for a Palestinian State, depend is just as bad.
Despite Blinken’s best efforts, Mahmoud Abbas, the PLO leader who serves as the official .President of the Palestinian Authority, refused to disavow the Oct 7 attacks. Instead, the PLO, Fatah and other elements of the ruling regime in charge of the West Bank have praised it and others, like the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, even bragged about taking part in the attacks.
A video from the Palestinian Authority terror group features “terrorists wearing Fatah’s yellow armbands firing Kalashnikov rifles at a kibbutz” and “a Fatah terrorist stamping on the head of a murdered Israeli” as the group boasts that “we had a prominent and clear role” on Oct 7.
Abbas was elected to a four-year term in 2005. There have been no elections since and he has functioned as a glorified dictator subsidized by our foreign aid. His likely successors, including the imprisoned leader of a terror group who is ahead in the polls, all praised the Hamas attack.
Democratic elections in a ‘Palestinian’ state would mean Hamas. The Islamic terror group won the 2006 legislative elections and took over Gaza. That's why there have been no elections since. Current polls show that if there were to be democratic elections, Hamas would easily win them.
Biden claimed that, “the vast majority of Palestinians are not Hamas. Hamas does not represent the Palestinian people.” But the vast majority of them disagree and want Hamas to head or form part of a unity coalition of Islamic terrorist groups running a ‘Palestinian’ state..
The only Palestinian Authority candidate who could beat Hamas is Marwan Barghouti, the grandfather of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, currently serving several life sentences in Israel prison, who responded to Oct 7 by urging a total war against Israel. Hamas has demanded Barghouti’s release as part of any ‘terrorists-for-hostages’ trade with Israel..
Recognizing a ‘Palestinian’ state means either recognizing the Palestinian Authority’s terror dictatorship in the West Bank or Hamas. Either way, an Islamic terrorist group will run the place, eliminate any opposition and launch more terrorist attacks against Israel and then anyone else.
But diplomats who were blindsided by the Oct 7 attacks are fighting to take control of the situation and the narrative by offering up the same old failed policies. Diplomats claim that Oct 7 was caused by a failure to negotiate, but it had really been brought about by endless negotiations.
Before the Oct 7 assault, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan had an article in Foreign Affairs magazine touting how negotiations with Hamas had led to quiet in Gaza. After the Hamas invasion, the online version had that edited out and only the print copies remain.
The roots of the Oct 7 attack lie in the 1992 pressure campaign to force Israel to take back the Hamas terror leaders it had deported, followed by the Oslo accord deals with Arafat and the PLO, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s ’s insistence on democratic elections that brought Hamas to power, Obama’s Arab Spring which empowered the Muslim Brotherhood parent organization of Hamas to win democratic elections, including in neighboring Egypt, which provided a vital outlet of support for Hamas, and then the Iran Deal that funded the state sponsor of Hamas which led Iran to expand its operations and ambitions around the region.
The addiction to diplomacy, nation building, accords and agreements led fatally to Oct 7.
Israel has resisted allowing Hamas to take part in elections only to face pressure from Rice.
“Whenever you have 80 percent of the Palestinian people turn out in a free and fair election, one that is free of violence, it has to be a cause for hope,” Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice argued after Hamas won the 2005 election.
In 2007, a year after Hamas seized control of Gaza, Rice declared, “frankly, it’s time for the establishment of a Palestinian state.”
No matter how often the same approach fails, the diplomats never admit they were wrong.
To be a modern day diplomat is to ignorantly blame a lack of diplomacy and negotiations for everything and to promise that they can fix everything. Diplomats have been telling us for generations that a “Palestinian state” would be the solution to all of the problems in the region, but ever since the Oslo accords, life in Israel and the Middle East has become much more violent.
There’s a limit to how much damage generals can do, but not diplomats.
Compare the damage from the Iraq War to the fallout from the Arab Spring which didn’t just set one country on fire, but led to brutal and enduring civil wars in Yemen, Syria and Libya, while causing serious harm in Egypt, Tunisia, and many other countries across the region.
Oct 7 was not the result of a military process, but a diplomatic one, in which the Biden administration and several Israeli governments had negotiated temporary quiet with Hamas.
Diplomats can’t afford to allow the impression that there is a military solution to terrorism. Or too much of anything else. And so they’re rushing to impose a diplomatic solution that would empower terrorists because that is all that diplomacy with terrorists ever accomplishes.
Since Oslo, diplomacy has consistently proved the flip side of the Roman “si vis pacem, para bellum” or “if you would have peace, prepare for war.”
Israelis have learned the hard way that if they prepare for peace, they will have war. Diplomacy is supposed to avert war, but with Islamic terrorists it encourages war instead.
Despite all the promises, the Oslo accords and other peace negotiations never ended the violence because the Islamic terrorists quickly realized that violence was their best leverage. Negotiations soon fell by the wayside as Palestinian Authority terrorists focused on direct or indirect proxy terrorism. Hamas then took up the slack by promising to turn the violence on or off in exchange for money and political power. Recognizing a “Palestinian” state after Oct 7 would validate terrorism as the ultimate strategy yet again and would ensure more such attacks.
The push for a “Palestinian” state after Oct 7 not only rewards the atrocities of that day, but encourages the Arab Muslim ‘Palestinian’ settlers living in the West Bank and Gaza to repeat them.
What do you get when you massacre over a thousand people, rape, behead, torture and kidnap everyone Jewish, Christian or non-Arab in sight? The answer should not be your own country.