President Trump? Yes!

Arutz Sheva 9 November 2016

President Trump? Yes!

"I will be president for all Americans."

“I will be president for all Americans.”

He caught the rhythm of America, he heard America singing.

Jack Engelhard

Politically speaking, he came from out of nowhere. He came with a New York swagger. He needed it to bulldoze past smooth-talking politicians from his own Party and to rough-ride over the Clinton Colossus that included the news media that had it in for him from the start.

Campaigning, he was not subtle. He was not smooth, but he caught the rhythm of America, the America that felt lost and forgotten by Obama, and that was positively disdained by Hillary Clinton who called his followers, nearly half the country “a basket of deplorables.”

Her “let them eat cake” smirk went over poorly compared to his plain-speak message aimed at the middle class, which is where most Americans live.

He spoke too plainly? Yes, he did. But New York is his kind of town and America is his kind of country. He speaks our language.

Trump got the drift. That’s how we talk. That’s how we think. We are not Sweden. We are not Germany. We are not Europeans.

We play rough. But we play fair. It was never fair for Trump. The New York Times and the rest of them gave Hillary Clinton every boost imaginable.

They hid all her sins and never gave him a chance. He was an underdog from the start.

But Americans love the underdog and proved it by their votes.

Trump is a man of steak and caviar. But he addressed the country through the language of bread and butter, the cadence of meat and potatoes.

This was no JFK “new frontier” for Trump, nor was it Reagan’s “morning in America” for Trump
Trump caught the mood of a nation in distress, a nation tottering from hyper liberalism that divided the country along the lines of race, religion and gender.
Too late for those terms after the trauma of the Obama/Clinton years — divisiveness at home and failures overseas. This is evening in America.

Trump caught the mood of a nation in distress, a nation tottering from hyper liberalism that divided the country along the lines of race, religion and gender.

He was never articulate in the classic sense. No, he spoke his mind. Liberals ran to their safe spaces. The rest of America cheered his boldness.

Yes – New York swagger that brings with it the ethnic even Yiddish accents of the streets. Yes he will be kosher for Israel.

No one within the Establishment did him any favors. He did it all on his own. He did not count on luck but he was lucky in one respect – his opponent Hillary Clinton was not well liked. Forget the scandals. Besides that she had no warmth, no charm, no wit, no wisdom. She was not a commanding presence like Margaret Thatcher, nor was she motherly like Golda Meir.

Still, from the outset, Hillary Clinton was the sure thing going into the race.

But judging from her past performance chart, we were assured four more years of absolute corruption and wall-to-wall investigations.

Voting is no different from betting. It’s all the same. It’s a wager. With Clinton, we knew the score.

With Trump, we don’t.

So America took a chance. In God We Trust that we picked a true champion.

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Posted in Culture, Government, Israel | 1 Comment

The Sleepwalkers and Mr Trump

By David P. Goldman, Asia Times

November 5, 2016

Contrary to conventional wisdom, the world should hope for the
election of Donald Trump next Tuesday.  American policy has become a
fetid morass in which ideology and influence-peddling jointly serve to
insulate its leaders from the real world.  It is not simply that
America’s leaders are out of touch, but that they are in continuous
touch with a fictitious construct of the world that excludes the
possibility of policy course correction.

America’s policy elites are sleepwalkers, in the way that historian

Sir Christopher Munro "Chris" Clark is an Australian historian working in England. He is the twenty-second Regius Professor of History at the University of Cambridge. In 2015 he was knighted for his services to Anglo-German relations.

Sir Christopher Munro “Chris” Clark is an Australian historian working in England. He is the twenty-second Regius Professor of History at the University of Cambridge. In 2015 he was knighted for his services to Anglo-German relations.

Christopher Clark described Europe’s leaders in August 1914 on the eve of the First World War.  Five years and 500,000 corpses after the disastrous “Arab Spring” and the Libyan coup of 2011, the American elite still does not understand that today’s chaos in the Middle East is borne of American meddling. President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton, and the McCain mainstream of the Republican Party passionately believed that the Arab world had broken free of its tyrannical past and was en route to democracy. By destroying the old dictatorships, the United States simply opened the field to ethnic and sectarian war. Syria is in civil war, Iraq is close to it, and even Turkey is at risk.

Consider the excoriation of Trump by General Michael Hayden, director of the CIA during 2006-2009. Hayden denounced Trump as “Putin’s useful fool” in a Washington Post op-ed this week, writing that “Trump also echoes Putin when it comes to Syria and the Islamic State, or ISIS. Here he follows the Moscow line that we and the Russians have common purpose and that Russia and Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad (and Iran) are “killing ISIS.”

“Actually, they are not,” Hayden continues. “They are bucking up the
Assad regime that, if anyone is keeping score, has killed more
innocents than the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra, the al-Qaeda
affiliate, have combined. And the attractiveness of the Islamic State
and al-Qaeda to Sunni Muslims is a direct byproduct of the
depredations of the Assad regime — the regime that Russia saved from
collapse a year ago.”

All of this is delusional. The reason Sunni Arabs supported the
Islamic State is that the United States destroyed the only Sunni Arab
state in the Levant and Mesopotamia, namely Iraq, and imposed a
Shi’ite state (under Nouri Maliki) in 2007. The Sunnis revolted, and
the American occupation under General Petraeus paid them hundreds of
millions of dollars to bide their time. After years in which the Sunni
opposition took the form of a non-state actor, namely al-Qaeda, ISIS
declared that it was time to form a Sunni state, and made itself a
magnet for Sunni support.

The Shi’ite militias led by Iranian officers whom the United States
states backs against ISIS are just as brutal as ISIS itself. That is
how confessional war is conducted in that part of the world. The
“moderate Sunni Islamists” whom General Hayden and his successors at
CIA armed from the Libyan stockpiles always were al-Qaeda with an
alternate business card.

As I noted Aug. 9, General Hayden still believes that the United
States should encourage Islamists like the Muslim Brotherhood to
exercise power in the Middle East. He told me last year that he was
disappointed that the Egyptian military had overthrown the Muslim
Brotherhood government of Mohamed Morsi before it had a chance to
devote itself to trash removal and other public services and
transformed itself into a moderate political force. By arming
“moderate” jihadists, Hayden and his CIA colleagues poured gasoline on
the sectarian fires of the region. Major-General Daniel P. Bolger
detailed the disaster in an excellent war memoir, Why We Lost,
published in 2014.

It was obvious to anyone with an ear to the ground that Sunni
insurgents would rally to the call of an Islamic State. General
Michael Flynn, a career officer and lifelong Democrat who headed
Defense Intelligence Agency during 2011 and 2012, tried to warn the
Obama Administration that ISIS had become a major threat. His reports
were ignored. As Flynn reported later, “I think they did not meet a
particular narrative that the White House needed.”

Flynn is now Donald Trump’s main national security adviser, and his
views are on the record in a 2016 book co-authored by Michael Ledeen.
Flynn evinces no sympathy for Russia; on the contrary, he emphasizes
Russia’s support for Iran as evidence of its ideological affinity to
the Islamic Republic: “It’s the old nostrum: The enemy of my enemy is
my friend. Putin has declared the United States (and NATO generally)
to be a national security threat to Russia, and ‘Death to America’ is
the official chant of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Both the Putinists
and the radical Iranian Muslims agree on the identity of their main
enemy. Hence, one part of the answer is surely that their alliance is
simply the logical outgrowth of their hostility toward America. … The
Russians and Iranians have more in common than a shared enemy. There
is also a shared contempt for democracy and an agreement — by all the
members of the enemy alliance — that dictatorship is a superior way to
run a country, an empire, or a caliphate.”

This seems to me too simple. Russia (like China) has no Shi’ite Muslim
population; its concerns for domestic stability arise entirely from
Sunnis. The Shia are a natural ally, despite the fact (as Flynn and
Ledeen note) that Iran has tried to make inroads among Russian and
Central Asian Muslims. These were feeble and ineffective. To be quite
fair to Putin, America’s blundering about the Middle East let the
Sunni jinn out of the bottle that Saddam Hussein long had contained,
and that is a threat to Russian interests. America’s errors forced
Russia to take a major role in the region, whether Putin wants to
undermine the United States or not. That is how Putin has explained
his stance to foreign leaders with whom I have spoken. Russia has not
forgotten how effective was America’s support for jihadists during the
Afghanistan war of the 1980s. If Washington wanted to destabilize
Russia, Sunni militants would be an effective instrument of
subversion. To do so would be foolish and dangerous, in my view, but
Moscow cannot rule out the possibility that the United States might do
so at some time in the future (I do not think the Obama administration
had any such thing in mind).

Putin also believes that Washington supported the February 2014 Maidan
coup in the Ukraine with an eye towards eventual regime change in
Russia. I do not know whether his assessment is correct, but the
thought did cross the mind of some people in Washington.

Moscow has a number of practical reasons to make life miserable for
the United States, quite apart from Putin’s ideological proclivities.
Sadly, it has extensive means to do so. While the United States spent
perhaps US$5 trillion in Iraq, Afghanistan and associated adventures,
Moscow invested far smaller sums in air-defense systems that may be
able to down American fifth generation fighters. Washington does not
know how good the S-300 and S-400 surface-to-air missile system is,
and does not want to find out.

So comprehensive was their incompetence that it is hard to find a
senior official of the George W. Bush or Obama administrations who was
not mired in it. General Flynn, who was fired for challenging the
official fairy-tale, is an exception. For the most part, America’s
foreign policy elite has chosen to eschew responsibility for its
blunders. Their reputations would be safe with Hillary Clinton, who
after all is one of them. The circle of self-protection is drawn so
closely that nothing short of an outsider with nothing to lose by the
humiliation of the old guard could restore a modicum of competence to
American policy.

Posted in All, Government, Islam, Israel | Leave a comment

FBI’s James Comey Seeks Redemption With New Clinton Probe

A former law enforcement officer friend said earlier, “I KNEW that many senior level, career FBI agents, who love the agency and our country, would be in REVOLT against Director James Comey for what he did in July.  Apparently, I was right.”

I hope Comey does not end up dead, as Vince Foster did.  I don’t trust “The lie that is Hillary.”  Jerry

See also ‘Almost 100’ Agents Threatened to Quit Over Clinton Email Probe

FBI’s James Comey Seeks Redemption With New Clinton Probe

 Jack Davis

Despite laying out a clear case that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had been “extremely careless” with classified information on a private email server, FBI Director James Comey has appeared to be a rock, never budging in his decision to not recommend an indictment of Clinton.

However, according to author Ed Klein, Comey has been suffering from the wounds he has since come to realize he inflicted on his agency.

In a column for the Daily Mail, Klein portrayed Comey’s decision to inform Congress about the new phase of the FBI’s investigation into the Democratic presidential candidate as his chance at professional redemption. Friday, Comey told Congress the investigation was reopened due to newly discovered evidence. That evidence has since been revealed to be 650,000 emails found on the computer of disgraced ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

Klein said that the July announcement that Clinton would not be indicted proved to be a watershed moment for Comey.

“The atmosphere at the FBI has been toxic ever since Jim announced last July that he wouldn’t recommend an indictment against Hillary,” Klein wrote, quoting a source close to Comey.

“Some people, including department heads, stopped talking to Jim, and even ignored his greetings when they passed him in the hall,” Klein quoted the source as saying. “They felt that he betrayed them and brought disgrace on the bureau by letting Hillary off with a slap on the wrist.”

As Comey defended the FBI in public, in private he was dealing with agents who were quitting the agency due to the results of the Clinton probe.

“He’s been ignoring the resignation letters in the hope that he could find a way of remedying the situation,” said the source, saying that Comey “jumped at the excuse to reopen the investigation.”

“He talks about the damage that he’s done to himself and the institution (the FBI), and how he’s been shunned by the men and women who he admires and work for him. It’s taken a tremendous toll on him,” Klein quoted the source as saying. “It shattered his ego. He looks like he’s aged 10 years in the past four months.”

Comey went against the will of Attorney General Loretta Lynch in sharing with Congress the fact that the Clinton probe was alive once again.

Posted in Government | 1 Comment

The All-time Biggest Trojan Horse

The clearest, best documented, most rational, yet scariest description of the most critical threat to this country.  If you care about the future of your children, grandchildren, etc., and if you read anything today, read this.  Reposted.  Jerry

“The all-time biggest Trojan Horse”

trojanhorse1

The Trojan Horse is a tale from the Trojan War about the subterfuge that the Greeks used to enter the city of Troy and won the war.

Ted Belman, 29/09/16 23:03

Ever wonder why there are so many Muslims and Muslim countries in the world? Over the millennia many countries were conquered, but didn’t remain Persian or Greek or Roman as the case may be. The countries conquered in the name of Islam, became and remained Islamic. For example

  • Pakistan, part of India, and Malaysia were Hindu;
  • Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Egypt and N. Africa were Christian;
  • Afghanistan was Buddhist.

They are all Islamic now.  [Europe looks to be next, followed by the United States unless . . . ? My comment.  Jerry]

This transformation was not by chance but by design. All these countries were conquered by force then shorn of their wealth and many of their women. Then the Muslim conquerors introduced Sharia and continued fighting the local inhabitants. The inhabitants were either forced to convert or accorded Dhimmi (lower) status. As time went on all cultures submitted and eventually became Islamic.

The advance of Islam was finally reversed in Spain and stopped at the Gates of Vienna in 1683. Thereafter the power of Islam went into decline but other than Spain, it never lost its hold on the people it conquered. This decline was reversed in the Twentieth Century when Arabs became wealthy as a result of their vast oil reserves. This wealth was then deployed to conquer the West, not by violent Jihad, but by stealth Jihad.

This design was referred to as The Islamic Doctrine. It consists of Koran (14%) which stipulates that “there is no god but ALLAH and Mohammed is his messenger”, Sira, Mohammed’s biography (26%) and Hadiths, oral traditions, (60%). There are two different Korans combined into one, the Mecca Koran and the Medina Koran.

Dr. Moorthy Muthuswamy writes,

“About sixty-one percent of the contents of the Koran are found to speak ill of the unbelievers or call for their violent conquest; at best only 2.6 percent of the verses of the Koran are noted to show goodwill toward humanity. About seventy-five percent of Muhammad’s biography (Sira) consists of jihad waged on unbelievers.”

Mohammed started as a religious preacher in Mecca. It was during this period that the Koran 2:256 stipulated. “There is no compulsion in religion” and 109:1 stipulated “You have your religion I have mine.” Ultimately he was chased out of Mecca and migrated with his followers to Medina.

Then began the Jihad period. From then on people were forced to convert under pain of death or were forced to live as Dhimmis (second class citizens) and pay (Jizya) for the privilege of living there.

This Jihad continued until there was no more discord.

Koran 2:193. “Fight them (Kafirs) until there is no more discord and the religion of Allah reigns absolute but if they submit, then only fight those who do wrong.”

Thus it continues until everyone in the territory has submitted to Islam, accepts Dhimmi status and pays Jizya.

Quotes from the Qur’an and Hadith on war, violence, infidels, and unbelievers may be found HERE.

For example:

Ayhat 8:12, “I shall cast terror into the hearts of those who are bent on denying the truth; strike, then, their necks, [O believers,] and strike off every one of their finger-tips!”

Sura 9:5,29,41. “Slay the idolators [non-Muslims] wherever ye find them, and take them captive, and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the last Day…. Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah! “

Migration is part of the doctrine of jihad.

This inconsistency in the Koran is resolved by the doctrine of abrogation, wherein the Medina principles abrogate the Mecca principles.

Migration intends to overtake the host country through this doctrine. It is driven by Islam’s proscription against assimilation, and its will to dominate.

51% of the Koran concerns itself with the Kafir. It is a political doctrine not a religious one. There is no golden rule. Kafirs are to be subjugated. Muslims are to dominate.

Dr Bill Warner summarizes this as follows:

“Migration is part of the doctrine of jihad. Migration is so important that the Islamic calendar is based upon the Hijra, Mohammed’s migration from Mecca to Medina. Why? Because it was migration that lead to the creation of jihad in Medina. And it was jihad that made Islam triumphant.

“In the past Muslims tended to stay in Islamic countries. Today, the new politics is to migrate to Kafir lands and immerse themselves in local politics. This is the jihad of money, writing and speech. Their politics is to bring the Sharia to Kafir culture. An example is using Islamic money is to build departments in universities that will support Sharia and never criticize Islam.“

To understand how they do it, read 4 Stages of Islamic Conquest.

Unfortunately this migration is encouraged by globalist leaders such as Chancellor Merkel and President Obama. And of course, Hillary Clinton aspires to be one of them.

Professor Belhaj explains elites “encourage migration and accommodate Islam”, and described the harmony between Muslim migrants and neoliberalism as “structural, and not accidental”. “Migration is useful for the neo-liberal model of the borderless, minimal, global society…”

The Muslim Brotherhood met in 1991 and produced a document which set out its strategic goals for North America. The document was entered as evidence in the 2008 Holyland Terror Funding Trial. It contained among other things, the following paragraphs:

“Enablement of Islam in North America, meaning: establishing an effective and a stable Islamic Movement led by the Muslim Brotherhood which adopts Muslims’ causes domestically and globally, and which works to expand the observant Muslim base, aims at unifying and directing Muslims’ efforts, presents Islam as a civilization alternative, and supports the global Islamic State wherever it is.

“…the Movement must plan and struggle to obtain “the keys” and the tools of this process in carry out [sic] this grand mission as a ‘Civilization Jihadist’ responsibility.

“The process of settlement is a ‘Civilization-Jihadist Process’ with all the word means.

“The Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers…

“We must possess a mastery of the art of “coalitions,” the art of “absorption” and the principles of “cooperation.”

President Obama and Secretary Clinton, upon taking office, embraced the Muslim Brotherhood and worked with them to depose Mubarak and Assad. Luckily General al Sisi reversed their victory in Egypt and Assad, with the help of Iran and Russia, thwarted their plans in Syria.

In “Why is Obama in Bed with the Muslim Brotherhood?” I wrote “The alliance between the Obama administration and the Muslim Brotherhood is the cornerstone of Obama’s New Middle East policy.

Capt. Joseph R. John, USN (Ret), the Chairman of Combat Veterans for Congress PAC, wrote in June 2016:

“Members of the Muslim Brotherhood, CAIR, and MPAC have sinister goals that are not in support of the US Constitution or The Bill of Rights. They have become a very dangerous “Fifth Column” in the United States, appointed by Obama to very high and sensitive positions in the US Government agencies.

“For nearly 8 years Obama has been filling the Washington bureaucracy including DHS, the CIA, DOD, the National Security Council, the White House, the State Department, every US Intelligence Agency, and the US Armed Forces with thousands of members of the CAIR, MPAC, the Muslim Brotherhood, and other Muslim Brotherhood front groups. “

In June of this year Donald Trump recognized the danger of Muslim migration and said, “This could be the all-time great Trojan horse.” And so it is but the US elites refuse to recognize it.

On August 15/16 he gave a speech on immigration and terrorism in which he clarified;

“A Trump Administration will establish a clear principle that will govern all decisions pertaining to immigration: we should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people.

“In the Cold War, we had an ideological screening test. The time is overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today.

“In addition to screening out all members or sympathizers of terrorist groups, we must also screen out any who have hostile attitudes towards our country or its principles – or who believe that Sharia law should supplant American law.

“Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted for immigration into the country.”

So you can see, rather that limiting his policy to weeding out terrorists, he advocates weeding out Jihadists who want to subjugate America to Islam. This is not racism. It is common sense and self-defense..

Trump has been stressing that Hillary Clinton wants to let in 550% more refugees than the 10,000 Obama let in. In response I wrote “Don’t be duped about Muslim migration to the US” in which I pointed out that the problem is much bigger and that no distinction should be made between refugees and immigrants.

According to a report highlighted by Megyn Kelly,

“According to the Report, Obama has issued over 832,000 green cards to Muslim majority countries in his first 6 years of his presidency. In addition, 482,000 Muslims overstayed their visas and are not being sent back. These Muslims support Sharia to an astonishing degree. In Afghanistan 99%, in Iraq 91% and in Pakistan 70%. When in the US 70% vote Democrat.

“And now Obama is intending to allow in another 1 million Muslims.”

Jewish Americans are very supportive of allowing such numbers into the US. They argue either we have a duty to do so or that Jews should be more welcoming given the history of America banning Jewish immigration in the thirties and forties. But this analogy doesn’t hold up at all. Jews were no threat to Americans personally and to their values, whereas Muslims are both. Furthermore Muslims are very anti-Semitic and very anti-Israel. The Muslims have many other countries they could go to. The Jews had no other country willing to take them in. Jews are, in effect, welcoming their enemies into the country.

As for a duty to allow Muslim immigration or any immigration, there is none.

We need Donald Trump.

Posted in Culture, Government, Islam | Leave a comment

Work Boots and Protestors

2016-09-26-12991675_large.jpg

I did not take this picture, but the fact that it happened demonstrates a point.

Protesters and rioters have no need of work boots.  They don’t work, they don’t get their feet or hands dirty, let alone walk off pavement, sidewalk, driveway or floor.  Why should they?  George Soros sees that they get paid for showing up whenever and wherever he sees an excuse to protest, to riot against police.

As Newsmax says the Washington Times reported, “Liberal billionaire George Soros has played a critical role in financing the Ferguson, Missouri, protest movement, giving at least $33 million in one year to back already established groups that “emboldened” on-the-ground activists there.”

I see no reason to expect Charlotte rioters to be treated any differently than Ferguson rioters, who were paid $5,000 per month.  So why should they work, when those checks could be added to their several welfare checks back home and ride the buses free to the demonstration site?

Furthermore, professional rioters are bused in from out of town, most likely paid handsomely.  Do you wonder the motivation for the organizers to do so?

As RealClearPolitics quoted Charlotte-Mecklenburg Fraternal Order of Police spokesman Todd Walther, 70% of those arrested in race riots in Charlotte this week were not locals.

“This is not Charlotte that’s out here,” he said. “These are outside entities that are coming in and causing these problems. These are not protestors, these are criminals.”

“I’m not saying all the people, but we’ve got the instigators that are coming in from the outside. They were coming in on buses from out of state. If you go back and look at some of the arrests that were made last night. I can about say probably 70% of those had out-of-state IDs. They’re not coming from Charlotte.”

The last 8 years have seen tremendous increases in violent protests, in comparison to the civil rights marches of earlier decades.  As John Nolte wrote, “Led behind the scenes by President Obama, America’s fraudulent civil rights leaders (Al Sharpton) and the mainstream media (especially CNN), worked together — starting with their lies in Ferguson — to launch hate campaigns against the police.”

It’s all part of the plan!

If you think Lyllary would reverse this graveyard spiral, I have a square mile of mountain property in south Florida I would like to sell you, at a great price.  Otherwise let’s “Make America Great Again.”

 

Posted in Culture, Government, Life, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Another “Great” about America

Charlotte Riot

Charlotte Riot

These days, we are bombarded by lawless thugs, blacks, black sympathizers, cop-haters, leftists, left-leaning media, unpatriotic wimps, narcissists, couch potatoes and forgetters of history bemoaning this country instead of doing anything positive about what they perceive as wrong.  We are told what they believe is wrong with this country.  We are subjected to lengthy lectures from multicultural activists about America’s history of slavery. PC police preach that we should not use certain words or terms, e.g. terrorist, Founding Fathers, Merry Christmas, cowboy or patriot, or display certain items, e.g. the U.S. flag. Leftists continue to fulminate about American foreign policy, which they blame for most of the evils in the world. Cultural pessimists, some of them conservative, deplore the materialism of American life and the excesses and degradation of American culture. Clearly, anti-Americanism doesn’t just find support outside the United States of America; it is also a home-grown phenomenon. In the view of America’s critics, both domestic and foreign, America can do no right.

Maestro Tchivzhel

Maestro Tchivzhel

Therefore, this newspaper article struck a tear-drawing response in my heart.  Maybe because I’ve witnessed the oppression in Latvia, Moldova and elsewhere in the USSR before it’s 1991 dissolution, maybe because Maestro Tchivzhel now lives 30 miles from me, but more probably because his experience and his story reinforces so well the greatness of this country that is so, so appealing to so many people in so many other countries.  And because I see the threat of this country’s graveyard spiral unless we turn from many of our current ways and Make America Great Again.

Tchivzhel in Great Hall of Leningrad

Tchivzhel in Great Hall of Leningrad

To read the Greenville News article as published, click here.

Tchivzhel celebrates milestone in a new life of freedom

[25 years after taking political asylum in Greenville]

Paul Hyde

gso“At every Greenville Symphony Masterworks concert, one piece is always on the program: the National Anthem.

“Conductor Edvard Tchivzhel insists on it.

“It’s his way of paying tribute to his beloved adopted country, a nation that saved his family from a “totalitarian” Soviet Union.

“Sometimes, as he leads the audience in singing, Tchivzhel can’t help but think also of his grandfather, the one he never met: the grandfather who was murdered by Joseph Stalin’s henchmen.

“Tchivzhel, the Greenville Symphony’s dynamic music director, is celebrating the 25th anniversary of his defection from the Soviet Union. This weekend, he’ll lead a program at the Peace Center that honors his past and present, with Tchaikovsky’s Third Symphony balanced by the works of two Americans, Gershwin and Copland.

“But the first order of business will be “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

“The scene will be one that has been repeated more than 100 times since Tchivzhel started the tradition after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. He’ll march briskly to the podium, signal a snare drum roll and turn to the audience, coaxing everyone into a huge sing-along.

“The audience will no doubt respond enthusiastically to Tchivzhel’s commanding leadership, becoming an impromptu chorus, with many hands on hearts.

“It’s always a warm moment of community music-making and shared patriotism.

“For Tchivzhel, those two minutes out of a typical two-hour concert are rich with emotion and meaning.

“The National Anthem means a lot to me personally because I always feel grateful to this country which accepted me and gave me a new life,” Tchivzhel said. “Each time I play the National Anthem, I feel like I’m celebrating my freedom.”

Life in the repressive Soviet Union, by contrast, was like a “prison,” Tchivzhel said.

“In the Soviet Union, you were not the master of your own life,” said Tchivzhel, who 25 years ago was associate conductor of the legendary USSR State Symphony Orchestra.

Greenville Symphony Music Director Edvard TchivzhelBuy Photo
Greenville Symphony Music Director Edvard Tchivzhel is pictured in the Great Hall in the former Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) during his days as associate conductor of the legendary USSR State Symphony Orchestra. (Photo: Courtesy of the Greenville Symphony Orchestra.)
“Everything happened by the permission of government,” he added. “It may be hard for someone who grew up in this part of the world to understand, but there was a complete lack of personal freedom under the totalitarian regime.”

Tchivzhel’s antipathy toward the Soviet regime has deep roots in a family tragedy. In 1937, his grandfather, Alexander Tchivzhel, was arrested on trumped up charges by KGB agents.

They never saw him again. It was only in 1954 that Tchivzhel’s family learned of Alexander Tchivzhel’s fate: After being arrested, he had almost immediately been executed, probably by a firing squad.

“He was falsely accused of being a Latvian spy,” said Tchivzhel, who is of Russian, Latvian and German heritage. “It was in 1937, during one of Stalin’s political purges. He killed millions simply because of their nationality.”

Tchivzhel, as a young man, nurtured an intense desire to escape from his bleak and dispiriting homeland.

“When I grew up, began my career and traveled abroad, I swore to God that I would leave this damn Soviet Union,” Tchivzhel said.

When Tchivzhel had a chance to bolt in 1991, he took it, despite considerable risks.

“That was when my second life began,” Tchivzhel said. “Today, to some extent I feel 25 years old.”

The story of Tchivzhel’s escape may seem like the plot of a spellbinding Cold War novel by John Le Carre, filled with KGB spying, clandestine phone calls and a hairbreadth escape to freedom.

But it’s all true.

It all began, ironically enough, at Chuck E. Cheese’s in Greenville.

Escape to freedom

It was 25 years ago in January that Tchivzhel came to Greenville with the USSR State Symphony to perform in a sparkling new performance hall called the Peace Center. Tchivzhel alternated conducting duties with Yevgeny Svetlanov, a towering figure in classical music.

Svetlanov conducted at the Peace Center.

“He was one of the great Russian conductors,” Tchivzhel said. “I was lucky to be his associate for five years. He influenced the way I conduct Russian works especially.”

Tchivzhel’s wife, Luba, and their son Arvid, then 4 years old, also were traveling with the orchestra during its month-long U.S. tour.

At dinner in Greenville the night before the concert here, Tchivzhel whispered to translator Lena Forster, then general manager of Greenville Ballet, that he wanted to defect from the Soviet Union.

Forster, a mother of three children, had taken the Tchivzhels to Chuck E. Cheese’s. Earlier, she had introduced them to the wonders of American abundance by taking them to Wal-Mart.

“I chose Chuck E. Cheese’s so Arvid and my kids could play,” Forster said. “They went out to play and that’s when Edvard asked me if I could help him stay here. It really came as a total surprise to me.”

She took the message to the late local attorney Larry Estridge, then with the Wyche law firm.

“I thought of Larry because I had known him for a long time and had great respect for him,” Forster said.

But Estridge, a commercial real estate lawyer, had never worked on a political asylum case. Forster suggested the two were the perfect pair to fool KGB agents.

Forster recalled, “He said, ‘You know I’m a real estate attorney,’ and I said, ‘Yes, I know, I’m a ballet teacher. Who would ever suspect the two of us?’”

Estridge, who died in October, 2015, spoke to this reporter in 2011 about Tchivzhel’s defection.

“It sounded like a good cause for some good people,” Estridge said. “That started a rather exciting 30-day adventure.”

Weeks of secret late-night conversations followed as Tchivzhel toured the U.S. with the USSR Orchestra and Estridge prepared the legal papers necessary for the Tchivzhels to gain political asylum.

“We were able to work our way through the regulations and determine that they were entitled to refugee status and ultimately citizenship,” Estridge said in 2011.

To evade the watchful gaze of armed KGB agents on tour with the orchestra, Tchivzhel, on his nightly jog, called Forster from pay phones.

“It had to be from pay phones because the KGB was everywhere,” Forster said. “There wasn’t a day we didn’t communicate. We had to figure out his jogging schedule so I’d be near the phone. I had to be the one to take his calls because Edvard at that time didn’t speak a word of English.”

The saga culminated in a Washington, D.C., airport on Feb. 10, 1991, with Forster and her brother assisting the FBI.

Having just arrived after the orchestra’s Long Island concert, Tchivzhel and family were to be spirited away by six FBI agents in a caravan of three cars, destined for a new life in the U.S.

But Tchivzhel, against the wishes of the FBI, first said goodbye to the musicians of the Soviet orchestra, creating a moment of panic.

“Edvard literally got into the bus with the orchestra while we waiting in the (FBI) cars,” Forster said. “The FBI didn’t want the family to separate. But Edvard wanted to make the musicians think that he was just going to visit friends and see some sights.”

Forster got out of the car and ran to the bus, saying in Russian, “C’mon, Edvard, we’ve gotta go!”

The FBI had carefully planned the Tchivzhels’ escape. One entire lane from the airport had been closed for a quick getaway. Nevertheless, Soviet Embassy officials jumped into a car and chased the FBI caravan.

On the spur of the moment, the FBI agents decided not to travel to a Washington, D.C., immigration office but rather to one in Baltimore.

The Soviets trailed the caravan all the way to the Baltimore office. Once there, an FBI agent ordered the Soviet officials to leave official government property. It worked.

“We had an angel watching over us,” said Forster, now executive director of Greenville’s International Ballet.

Following some paperwork, Tchivzhel and his family boarded a plane for Greenville.

Tchivzhel gained his freedom. Greenville gained a first-rate conductor. America gained a dedicated new patriot.

A new life

Coming from the Soviet Union, Tchivzhel said he felt “very lucky and proud to start a new life in a place of freedom and liberty.

“We were fully embraced by the Greenville community,” Tchivzhel said. “That’s what makes this such a special place for me. For that, I feel a great thankfulness every year.”

When he arrived in Greenville after his defection, Tchivzhel’s first act was a very American one: He held a press conference, organized by Estridge.

The news of a conductor turning his back on the Soviet Union garnered national and international attention.

But there was a steep price to pay. Tchivzhel never saw his mother again. She died in 1994. He saw his father only once more when the latter journeyed in 1995 to see his son in the United States.

“We had a nice reunion but then he left and I never saw him again as well,” Tchivzhel said.

Tchivzhel’s defection took place in the context of a crumbling Soviet Union. By December of 1991, all 15 republics of the Soviet Union had gained independence, marking a formal end to the world’s largest socialist state and the conclusion to the final chapter of the Cold War.

In his first months in the United States, Tchivzhel, his wife Luba and son Arvid lived with Forster’s family, who along with other Greenville residents helped the newcomers adjust to life in the U.S.

“I taught Edvard to drive,” Forster said.

Greenville residents even held fundraisers for the Tchivzhels.

“All of their support at that time was provided by the generosity of Greenvillians,” Estridge said in 2011. “I think that’s one of the many reasons they fell in love with Greenville.”

Tchivzhel later became conductor of the Fort Wayne (Indiana) Symphony Orchestra.

As he continued to develop his conducting career in the U.S. and internationally, Tchivzhel returned to Greenville several times.

He was appointed conductor and music director of the Greenville Symphony Orchestra in 1999.

That same year, Tchivzhel was granted American citizenship.

He also was appointed a visiting professor of conducting at Furman University.

Tchivzhel, a serious musician with a droll sense of humor, soon learned to say “Y’all” in a thick Slavic accent when addressing Greenville audiences at the Peace Center.

But it was a national tragedy, the Sept. 11 attacks on the nation, that inspired Tchivzhel to begin every Masterworks concert with the National Anthem.

“I hope it reminds the audience who we are, where we live and what we have to be proud of,” Tchivzhel said. “I sincerely believe in the values of the country and its way of life.”

Nationwide, few orchestras begin concerts with the National Anthem. Here in Greenville, the 15-year musical tradition Tchivzhel established shows no sign of being discontinued.

In 2003, Tchivzhel made a triumphant return to Russia to conduct a standing-room-only concert with the Saint Petersburg Philharmonia. He recalled recently that advertisements for the event referred to “the American conductor Edvard Tchivzhel.”

Arvid Tchivzhel, for his part, graduated from Furman University and now works for an economics consulting firm in Atlanta. He’ll join his father at this weekend’s concerts, orchestra officials said.

Classical music fans in Greenville said Edvard Tchivzhel has been an outstanding leader for the orchestra, substantially boosting attendance at concerts.

Bob Howard, who arrived at the Greenville Symphony to handle administrative duties at about the same time that Tchivzhel became music director, said he learned Tchivzhel’s musical philosophy early in his tenure.

“He said, ‘If we play beautiful music, they will come,’” recollected Howard, who served as the orchestra’s executive director from 1999 to 2008. “Edvard and the orchestra did play beautiful music, and we’ve set audience records ever since.”

With an energetic podium presence and a keen sense of musical drama, Tchivzhel demands high standards of music-making from the orchestra and challenges the musicians to test the limits of their abilities, orchestra members have said.

Sherwood Mobley, the orchestra’s executive director who died early this year, spoke to this reporter in 2015 about Tchivzhel: “He has raised the level of artistry significantly since he came on board. He’s a consummate professional, with a very strong attention to detail.

“He’s definitely an inspirational figure, and passionate about music-making,” he added.

“What’s most important and significant is the fact that he is a world-class conductor with a deep knowledge of music, both technically and artistically,” said Andy White, interim executive director of the Greenville Symphony. “Because he and his wife live in Greenville and love our community, he allows the symphony to take advantage of that fact by involving him in all levels of activities to promote the symphony.”

Internationally renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, following an appearance a few years ago with Tchivzhel and the Greenville Symphony, wrote a highly complimentary letter to the conductor. He called Tchivzhel’s music-making “indisputably commanding and communicative,” adding that the conductor is “simply a master.”

Fittingly, this weekend’s concerts are titled “The Great Escape.”

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Never Trump? So you want Hillary . . .

“I’ll never vote for Trump!  He’s too . . . , ” I hear that people are saying, including a U S Senator, a former state representative of me, and others.

So what you are saying is, “Let Hillary be the next president.”  Let’s face it.  Either Trump or Hillary will be the next president, whether we like it or not at this point in the election cycle.

Failure to vote is to default to Hillary.

No, I don’t like Trump’s mouth.  But I do like the upsetting of the bureaucratic apple cart that he has brought, and will bring.  I also like his exposure of the media’s bias that has gone on for years.

Is he the perfect candidate whose thoughts mirrors mine on all fronts?  NOPE

Does he say everything the way I wish he would say it?  NOPE

Am I absolutely sure that his motives are absolutely pure?  NOPE

Is there any of the other RINO Politicians I like better?  NOPE

Do I know for certain how he will straighten out this country?  NOPE

Am I going to sit home, refuse to vote, and let Hillary win; because he is NOT perfect?  NOPE

OK, your turn to decide which you want, lying, deceitful Hillary whose record we know or Trump!  Just remember, she would get to alter the Supreme Court for decades, she would do even more to take our God-given rights from us, she would further bring Islam into this nation, . . .  I can’t think of anything good she might do for this country.

Remember, it will be one or the other.

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Ferguson situation. Be alert.

Not to be fear mongering, but to be judiciously cautious, may I suggest moving into alert condition yellow because of Ferguson. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  Better safe than sorry.  Naturally, we don’t like to think that rioting will happen in our environment, but . . . .

From a highly respected law officer friend with his ear to the ground comes the following to me this afternoon.

“Please pay close attention to the news (radio, TV, etc.) for information about the Ferguson, MO grand jury situation.

“Between now and the time the announcement comes that the officer will not face charges in Ferguson you need to watch where you are, where you are going and what resources you have with you. It will happen quickly once it is announced and organized nationwide idiocy is already being planned, fueled by social media as well as the regular media. Have alternate routes to the place you need to be. Use the buddy system. Leave as soon as you hear the news if there is even an inkling of an idea that you might encounter any kind of social unrest.

“Your race, religion, color and social status will be of no consequence if you are in the way of mob mentality. There will be no one to call and you will be required to do what is needed for your own well-being. Do not hang out in places that are likely to be targets or points of the inflammation. Do not hang around with people that will incite such illegal activities for their own personal gain. I know these seem like common sense but it seems during each riot in our lifetime we watch the same actions over and over.

“Make sure you carry means to protect yourself and family. Carry enough. Have some supplies so if you can’t get to where you need to go you can stay somewhere else. A little food, water, light, warm clothes, first aid goes a long way if you can’t get home for ten hours. Or more.

“Just like with an impending storm don’t wait until the storm hits to shop, fuel the vehicles, etc.  Prepare for that now so if you need to sit tight for a night or two it doesn’t cause undue hardship. Use the am/fm radio, TV news, etc. instead of the player or satellite radio in the vehicle so information can be obtained as it unfolds.

“Talk with the family openly and without fear mongering. Going over a situation, brain gaming, in your head is the first step. If you have children have a plan so they might know a safe secondary location to go to if you are delayed from picking them up at school or an event. Consider small, portable FRS radio communication, as cell phones will quickly jam. Text messages often get thru when calls fail.

“Tell your family and friends.

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What Makes Islamic State so Attractive?

Why are young people rushing to join IS?

One of many photographs of IS activity, from a Franciscan priest to show with what we are dealing. (Not in Kedar’s Op Ed)

Dr Mordechai Kedar wrote today, in Hebrew, for the Israeli newspaper “Arutz Sheva” the following, translated by Rochel Sylvetsky.  This is the best explanation I have seen of the rampant growth of IS (ISIS or ISIL).

Other articles by Dr Kedar are available.  He is a senior lecturer in the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University. He served in IDF Military Intelligence for 25 years, specializing in Arab political discourse, Arab mass media, Islamic groups and the Syrian domestic arena. Thoroughly familiar with Arab media in real time, he is frequently interviewed on the various news programs in Israel.

Op-Ed: What Makes Islamic State so Attractive?

“The fact that Islamic State (formerly Daesh or ISIS/ISIL) is highly popular in the Islamic world cannot be ignored. Not a day goes by without reading about large numbers of people from all parts of the globe – both Muslims, would-be Muslims and converts – arriving in droves at the Jihad centers of Syria and Iraq prepared to give up their lives for Islamic State.

A number of groups have sworn allegiance to the “State’s” leader, Caliph Abu Bakr al Baghdadi. The most recent of these is Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, a terror group based in Sinai that poses a threat to Egypt.

In addition, the fact that we have not heard of one protest or demonstration against Islamic State anywhere in the Islamic world, not even against its treatment of minorities, women and children, cannot be ignored. The thunderous quiet is in sharp contrast to the violent demonstrations that enveloped that very same world over caricatures, films and military actions of which it disapproved. Does the Islamic world agree with beheadings, mass murder of minorities and the sale of women in the slave market? And another question that needs answering is why Al Qaeda was not as attractive as Islamic State during the years in which it operated.

The most meaningful answer to these questions is that to many Muslims, Islamic State appears to be the real thing – pure, holy, original and unadulterated Islam. Continue reading

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Meet the Hamas Billionaires: This Is Where Money Donated To the ‘Palestinians’ Goes

“Among the Palestinians, they tell you straight out, ‘I want to get rich.'”

So quotes Ella Levy-Weinrib in GLOBES, Israel’s Business Arena, “Meet the Hamas Billionaires” in Israel’s leading business publication.

[Do you wonder how many of our tax dollars now line the pockets of those billionaires while their common folk live in poverty?  Or which U. S. do-gooder organizations are duped into making them richer? I certainly do.]

Levy-Weinrib continues, “In recent days, various media have been publishing photographs of Hamas leaders in luxurious homes with fitness equipment, at luxury hotels around the world, etc. On the other hand, distressing pictures are being shown of the suffering of the Palestinian people in their rundown houses, whom Hamas says it represents.

One of the big mysteries is how much the Hamas leaders, the Arab world’s new tycoons, are worth, and how they, born and raised in refugee camps, who raise aloft the cause of their people’s welfare, have become so wealthy and reclusive.

Col. (res.) Dr. Moshe Elad, a lecturer in the Middle East Department of the Western Galilee Academic College, who served in senior positions in the territories for 30 years, is attempting to answer these questions.

“The vast majority of Hamas founders and leaders were refugees or second generation refugees, and some of them were the product of marriages between Egyptians and Palestinians. They had no money at all. When they and Hamas were just starting out, the organization (not in its own name) was nurtured by the Israeli military government, which fostered the Islamic associations working in the Gaza Strip as a counterweight to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Their phenomenal wealth started accumulating when they decided to disassociate themselves from Israel and search for alternative financing sources.”
Continue reading

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