Watch This Reaction: Putin Laughs Right In This Journalist’s Face

When an interviewer recently confronted Vladimir Putin about Europe’s American-made missile defense system, the President of the Russian Federation couldn’t help but laugh right in his face.

According to the journalist, NATO’s missile defense system is pointed at and designed to protect Europe from the nuclear threat posed by Iran, not Russia.

Putin’s reaction is a must-see.

Interview: NATO claims the missile shield was not built against you but against Iran.

[Putin begins laughing almost uncontrollably]

Putin: You really make me laugh. God bless you because it’s almost time to finish the day… indeed it’s already time to go to sleep. At least I get home in good humor.


(Watch at Youtube)

What’s even more humorous is the seriousness of the interviewer’s subsequent reaction to being laughed at.

It seems that he actually believed the notion that NATO built its missile defense shield to protect from Iran, a country which, according to U.S. intelligence reports, has yet to develop not only the nuclear technology, but the inter-continental ballistic missile systems capable of delivering such technology all the way from Iran.

The propaganda on both sides is actually pretty funny considering how ridiculous the back and forth posturing has gotten, especially in recent months.

What won’t be funny is when Europe, Russia, China and the United States eventually use it to facilitate entry into a global conflict involving billions of people.

putin-laughs-his-butt-off

(Hat tip Tomato Bubble and Rense.com)
(Video via The Daily Sheeple)


SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You

FOUR RACES TO WATCH: What patriots can do now!

Is the Tea Party dead? Is Constitutional Conservatism an anachronism? Are those resisting America’s descent into tyranny simply going to roll over against the progressives’ 100-year war on America? I, for one, say: hell, no.

What can you do? Pick out one or more of these races and offer your support with time or money. Any amount will help.

It’s time to take back the Republican Party. Let the losers in the establishment form a third party. The time for action is now.

Doug Ross @ Journal

REALITY TV: Watch as small company employees find out what Obamacare is doing to their coverage

“They call it the affordable health plan. There’s nothing affordable about it. I can’t afford it.

A local news station brings viewers inside one Pennsylvania company as the employees there learn about their new health care plans under Obamacare…

“Look at the numbers,” says the reporter of two employees. “Jeff and Dave used to have a $ 1,250 deductible. Since Obamacare went into effect, it’s now jumped 60 percent to $ 2,000. That’s nothing compared to Brian, Kristi, and Judy who have kids. they are going to pay twice that, four grand.” The reporter adds that co-pays are being increased, too.

“I don’t know how President Obama thinks he’s helping us because we can’t afford this, we can’t afford to pay these co-pays, to pay these deductibles on what we’re making,” says one of the workers.

Now pretend you’re in the GOP Establishment.

What would you do to exploit the tidal wave of rage washing over the countryside as Americans discover what socialized medicine really means?

If you answered “Pass Amnesty for Illegal Aliens“, you have a future working for Karl Rove and the Chamber of Crony Capitalism.

Hat tip: BadBlue Real-Time News

Doug Ross @ Journal

Who to watch in 2014 — #4: Egyptian army chief al-Sisi. He’s set to announce presidential bid in 72 hours.

Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (Photo: Reuters)

Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (Photo: Reuters)

(Washington, D.C.) — This is the fourth in a series of columns on key leaders in the epicenter we should be keeping an eye on in 2014.

1) The first leader on my list was Jordan’s King Abdullah II — a fascinating Arab Reformer, the son of a bold Reformer, actively trying to lead his small, resource-poor, but vitally important nation towards progress and freedom, tolerance and modernity in a very tough neighborhood. The Big Questions: Will he play a key role in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process in 2014? Will he also continue to protect himself and his nation from the Radical forces that want his head?

2) The second leader was Syrian President Bashar al-Assad — a cruel dictator, the son of a cruel dictator, who is massacring his people as he presides over the implosion of a country engulfed in civil war. The Big Questions: Will he survive through  2014? Or are we seeing the end of his regime and the Syrian geopolitical state as we have known it?

3) The third leader was Ayman al-Zawahiri — a fanatical, Radical leader of al Qaeda who is Hell-bent on eradicating Jews, Christians and other ”infidels” in the epicenter and establishing an Islamic state throughout the Middle East, no matter what the cost in blood and treasure.

4) The fourth  leader on my list is Abdel Fattah al-Sisi — he is Egypt’s military chief who is reportedly now set to run for the president of Egypt in the April national elections.

In recent months, Al-Sisi has:

  • boldly toppled the Radical regime of Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood on July 3, 2013
  • outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood and jailed many of its leaders
  • fought the Brotherhood in the streets of Egypt
  • declared a ferocious war on the lawless jihadists operating in the Sinai desert
  • shut down many of the smuggling tunnels connecting the Sinai to the Gaza Strip
  • committed himself to cutting off the arms and money flowing to the Hamas terror group operating in Gaza

It’s still not clear to me what al-Sisi’s long-term goals and motives are. It remains to be seen whether he will prove to be a true blessing for the people of Egypt over the long haul, a friendly and useful partner of the U.S. and the Western alliance, a peaceful neighbor to Israel, and a counterweight to an aggressive and hostile rising Iranian regime. Only time will tell.

But let’s be clear: though it was not pretty (indeed, it has at times been quite bloody), al-Sisi’s actions saved Egypt from being suffocated by the Muslim Brotherhood, and inasmuch as he has declared war on Radical Muslim forces in the Sinai, he has — so far, at least — been a force for security and stability in the Egypt-Israel relationship.

President Obama strongly condemned al-Sisi and his military forces when they liberated Egypt from the cruel grip of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013. The administration also severely cut military aid to Egypt, which totals $ 1.3 billion annually.

I believe the President was wrong. Yes, I, too, am not generally comfortable when a military steps in to overturn a democratic election. Yes, I, too, want to see a healthy, fair, functioning Jeffersonian democracy in Egypt, along with a vibrant, growing free market economy that is creating millions of jobs and growing the wages of average Egyptians. Like many Christians, I want to see Egyptian believers protected from persecution, and to see the Church growing and strong. But the Muslim Brotherhood’s power grab was not going to achieve any of these things. Egyptians knew the Brotherhood was hijacking their country. That’s why in 2013 22 million of Egyptians signed petitions demanding Morsi and his cronies leave at once.

At this stage, the U.S. should continue to work closely with al-Sisi and the Egyptian military. Several vital U.S. national interests are at stake, and returning power to the Brotherhood is not one of them.

John Bolton, the former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., did an excellent job explaining our interests in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal last August. Excerpts:

The U.S. should support the military because even with its obvious flaws, it is more likely to support the palpable U.S. interests at stake. Three are basic.

  1. First, it is in the U.S. interest to have an Egyptian government committed to upholding the Camp David Accords with Israel, the foundation of U.S. Middle East policy since 1979. The Muslim Brotherhood assassinated Anwar Sadat in 1981 for negotiating Camp David, and it has never accepted it. Mr. Morsi foreshadowed abrogating or gutting Camp David as soon as practicable during his presidential campaign. With Iran nearing its long-sought nuclear capability, America and Israel would be worse off than before 1979. The U.S. is doing little to stop Iran, but we can still save Camp David. Backing Egypt’s military is the best bet.
  2. Second, and closely related: If the Sinai Peninsula slips from Cairo’s control, terrorists like Hamas (a Brotherhood subsidiary) and al Qaeda will use the area as a haven and a highway for smuggling arms to Gaza for use against Israel and to both sides in the Syrian civil war. Egypt’s army is far more likely to prevent this nightmare scenario than the Brotherhood.
  3. Third, for purely economic reasons, the Suez Canal must remain open. Annually, some 14% of global shipping and 30% of oil supplies pass through the canal. The Brotherhood is far more susceptible to suicidal impulses if it means harming the West. Egypt’s military does not prize martyrdom.

For these reasons and more, the U.S. should continue providing military assistance, which hopefully still provides some measure of continuing leverage. Three decades of affording Egypt’s office corps with military training has created powerful connections that cutting off aid would irreparably damage. America’s $ 1.3 billion in annual military aid is minimal compared to what the Saudis could provide in the U.S.’s absence, but its political symbolism remains important. Moreover, the U.S. should worry about an opportunistic Vladimir Putin stepping in to fill its shoes, eager to reverse Moscow’s historic setback when Sadat expelled the Soviets from Egypt.

As 2014 begins, then, al-Sisi is a man to keep an eye on.

——————————

RESOURCES:

To that end, here are a few helpful articles that have been published recently:

Excerpts from a Reuters report:

  • Judicial sources from the High Elections Commission said that Egyptian presidential elections are likely to be held in mid to late April.
  • Regarding the possibility that army chief Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi will run for president, he should resign before the High Elections Commission calls on voters to go to the polls, the sources said according to the Egyptian newspaper Al-Masri Al-Youm on Sunday.
  • Egypt’s military council has given the army chief, Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, a green light to run for president, a security source told Reuters.
  • “The top army officials all okayed Sisi running for the presidency,” said the source. Sisi is expected to announce his candidacy within days.
  • Sisi deposed Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in July, triggering political upheaval and street violence in the Arab world’s most populous nation.
  • Since then he has become hugely popular among Egyptians, who see him as a decisive figure who can stabilize the country which has lurched from one crisis to another since a popular uprising toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
  • Hours before the top generals approved Sisi contesting the election, the presidency announced he had been promoted to field marshal from general, in what security officials said was a sign he is about to declare his candidacy for the presidency.
  • “The decision was expected and it is the first step before the resignation of the general and his candidacy announcement which is now expected very soon,” said a security official.
  • On Sunday, Interim President Adly Mansour issued a decree, stating that presidential elections would be held before parliamentary ones, chaining the political roadmap set out by the interim government.
  • Sisi is set to announce his candidacy in the next 72 hours, likely on Wednesday, the Saudi newspaper Okaz reported.


Joel C. Rosenberg’s Blog

Who to watch in 2014 — #3: Ayman al-Zawahiri. Al Qaeda leader targeting U.S., Israel, Jordan & Syria’s Assad

Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Egyptian-born leader of al Qaeda.

Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Egyptian-born leader of al Qaeda.

(Washington, D.C.) — This is the third in a series of columns on key leaders in the epicenter we should be keeping an eye on in 2014.

1) The first leader on my list was Jordan’s King Abdullah II — a fascinating Arab Reformer, the son of a bold Reformer, actively trying to lead his small, resource-poor, but vitally important nation towards progress and freedom, tolerance and modernity in a very tough neighborhood. The Big Questions: Will he play a key role in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process in 2014? Will he also continue to protect himself and his nation from the Radical forces that want his head?

2) The second leader on my list was Syrian President Bashar al-Assad — a cruel dictator, the son of a cruel dictator, who is massacring his people as he presides over the implosion of a country engulfed in civil war. The Big Questions: Will he survive through  2014? Or are we seeing the end of his regime and the Syrian geopolitical state as we have known it?

3) The third leader on my list is Ayman al-Zawahiri — a fanatical, Radical leader of al Qaeda who is Hell-bent on eradicating Jews, Christians and other ”infidels” in the epicenter and establishing an Islamic state throughout the Middle East, no matter what the cost in blood and treasure.

The Obama administration has repeatedly made the case since the killing of Osama bin Laden that Zawahiri and al Qaeda are crippled and in decline, despite the attacks on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Libya on September 11th, 2012. Consider this headline: “Obama Has Touted Al Qaeda’s Demise 32 Times since Benghazi Attack.”

In a new interview with the New Yorker, President Obama yet again dismissed al Qaeda’s role and influence saying, “The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant.” 

But U.S. and Middle Eastern security, intelligence and diplomatic officials I’ve met with in recent months say just the opposite is true. They are increasingly concerned about al Qaeda’s resurgence, and say Zawahiri and his allies pose a growing danger to Americans, and particularly to friendly, moderate governments in the Mideast. 

Last fall, the Egyptian-born Zawahiri called for “lone wolf attacks” by Radicals in the U.S. He also continues to wage “economic jihad” against the U.S., saying in a video, “We must bleed America economically by provoking it, so that it continues its massive expenditures on security. America’s weak spot is its economy, which began to totter from the drain of its military and security expenditure.”

Zawahiri and his senior deputies and allies, former CIA and Mossad officials tell me, desperately want to launch horrific terror attacks against the United States and Israel. They also want to topple the regimes of Bashar al-Assad in Syria, King Abdullah II in Jordan, Nouri al-Maliki in Iraq, and eventually General Sisi in Egypt. If they can also knock off some emirates in the Gulf and the Saudi leadership, they wouldn’t hesitate for a moment.

Several years ago, al Qaeda was on the ropes. The U.S. and allied military and intelligence operations were pressing the offensive, ripping up jihadist terror bases, arresting and killing their leaders and operatives, cutting off their financial networks, and protecting Muslim civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan. It was messy and imperfect, but significant progress was being made.

But mounting evidence suggests a reversal is underway.

With the White House pulling U.S. military forces completely out of Iraq — and increasingly out of Afghanistan — numerous experts fear a vacuum is being created, and that Zawahiri and other Radical forces are moving to fill that vacuum. We are no longer pressing the offensive. Zawahiri and his deputies are.

Consider some headlines worth noting:

Consider, too, today’s news of Israel arresting an al Qaeda cell plotting attacks inside Israel.

“Israel’s Shin Bet internal security agency cracked open an al-Qaeda plot, directed from the Gaza Strip, to carry out mega terror attacks in Israel against both US and Israeli targets, according to information the Shin Bet made available Wednesday,” reports the Times of Israel. “Israel is holding three suspects in the plot, it added, but the key plotter is still at large.”

Excerpts:

  • The attacks, still in the planning stage, included twin suicide bombings, against the US Embassy in Tel Aviv and the main Israeli convention center in Jerusalem, where President Barack Obama gave the centerpiece of his Israel visit last March.
  • An Arab resident of East Jerusalem, according to the plan, was to be sent to Syria to learn the nuts and bolts of the terror trade. He would then facilitate the twin attack, which would be carried out by al-Qaeda operatives entering Israel with Russian paperwork, according to the Shin Bet.
  • The security organization fingered a Gaza-based al-Qaeda operative, Oreib al-Sham, as the point man for the twin attack. The fact that he was allowed to operate freely from Gaza, the Shin Bet said, indicates that “Hamas allows Salafists to carry out terror attacks so long as they are not targeting them.”
  • It has also become increasingly clear, the security organization said, that the civil war in Syria, a magnet for terror operatives throughout the Middle East, has deepened the roots of al-Qaeda and other like-minded organizations in the region.
  • Those organizations, the Shin Bet said, are striving to link up with willing Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem in order to strike Israel and Western targets.
  • In this case, al-Sham, which means Greater Syria in Arabic and is likely a pseudonym, drafted three willing Palestinians over Facebook and Skype. The most developed plans appear to have been hatched with an East Jerusalem resident, Ayad Abu-Sara, who expressed both a willingness to carry out attacks on his own and to help orchestrate foreign attacks.
  • Al-Sham made contact with Abu-Sara four months ago via Skype and Facebook, the Shin Bet said. The 23-year-old resident of Ras Khamis, a neighborhood within municipal Jerusalem, allegedly agreed to shoot the tires of an Israeli bus heading downhill from Ma’ale Adumim to the Dead Sea. He would then fire at the passengers and the rescue workers arriving at the scene.

I will be watching Zahawiri closely in 2014. I pray he is brought to justice. But it’s not really about one man. Bin Laden and Zawahiri have inspired, mobilized and encouraged a movement of Sunni Radicals throughout the world. We dare not lower our guard. Far too much is at stake.

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Joel C. Rosenberg’s Blog