April 19, 2013

©2013 jbjd 

I am in lockdown because Suspect #2 in the Boston Marathon bombing is on the loose down the street.

Since late last night, when the headlines only read, MIT officer shot; I have been glued to the computer, following a live video feed on WCVB, the local news, and a live twitter feed on the Boston Globe. Because almost immediately, the report of the initial shooting was followed by reports describing multiple police forces had identified the getaway car, and were in active pursuit of what was overheard on Boston police scanners were ‘two men of Middle Eastern descent.’ Based on this overwhelming show of force; and the perceived appearance of the alleged perpetrators – I had seen several still images of the Suspects #1 and #2 and thought they looked Middle Eastern, too – I immediately figured the shooters had something to do with the bombing.

This post is not intended to be a news story; you can read the details on your own. And it is not going to provide a description of the atmosphere in town – before, during, and after the race – or, background information of the towns themselves –  Watertown, Boston (Copley Square), and Cambridge (aka The People’s Republic of Cambridge) – with respect to the events occurring here. (The race passes a couple of blocks from my home.) I hope to do so, when this is all over. I just want to point out what I consider to be a salient aspect of the news coverage.

There has been virtually no focus on the facts that the brothers, ethnic Chechen, are Muslims; that they identify themselves on their FB pages as good Muslims; and that, their father named them after historical Muslims who advocate the very violence subsequently perpetrated by their namesakes. Even the boys’ uncle, interviewed at his home in MD, tried to preempt any discussion that his nephews’ actions were somehow related to their being radical Islamists. Asked why he thought the men had done such a thing, he replied, “Being losers, hatred to those who were able to settle themselves – these are the only reasons I can imagine,” sternly adding, “anything else, anything else to do with religion, with Islam, is a fraud, is a fake.” (He further expressed extreme remorse for the attacks, offering to get down on his knees to beg forgiveness from the victims. None of the reporters followed up by asking whether this quest for absolution included prostrating himself to those victims of the Jewish faith.) But thus determined to insulate the Muslim faith from any scrutiny with respect to these acts which, however late in the game, even President Obama conceded constitute terrorism; he was anxious to redeem the family’s Chechen ethnicity. “You put a shame on our entire family — the Tsarnaev family — and you put a shame on the entire Chechen ethnicity,” Tsarni said.

Before the brothers were officially identified as both the suspects shown in the FBI videos from the Boston Marathon bombing and, the suspects in the murder of the MIT police officer; local Muslims were already hoping the perpetrators were not ‘one of them.’

Grief and dread for Boston Muslims

Like so many others this week, local imams have been praying since Monday’s bombings.

They’ve been praying for the victims. They’ve been praying that the ­fanatic who did this is caught quickly and brought to justice.

And they’ve been praying for something more: Whoever it is, please don’t let him be a Muslim.

“What will happen to us if they arrest someone and that someone turns out to be a Muslim?” Imam Talal Eid, a chaplain at Brandeis University, said Wednesday.

He recalls the backlash that followed the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. He remembers being afraid to send his children to school for a few days afterward, and the way some began to view all Muslims with suspicion, even hostility. A few fringe-dwellers even spoke of internment camps like those that held Japanese-Americans during the ­Second World War.

The country has changed since 2001, Eid said. People know more about ­American Muslims now, are less afraid of them, less likely to make the many pay for the sins of the unhinged few. But we have a long way to go.

“I am still worried,” he said. “We are still labeled. Muslims may be out of the red zone, but we are still in the yellow zone, not the green zone.”

If the terrorist turns out to be a disaffected survivalist, a white supremacist, or some other flavor of domestic extremist, he will stand in a courtroom alone, with only infamy for company. If he is a Muslim, thousands will be called upon to answer, by ­association and stereotype, for his actions.

Leaders in the community will then go right into what Ibrahim Rahim, imam at the Yusuf Mosque in Brighton, calls “apologist mode.”

The attack fills him with immense grief, said Rahim, who leads a largely Arab-American congregation of several hundred. Born in New York, he has lived in Boston since he was 12, and he feels this attack as viscerally as any native. But all week, his grief has been bound with dread.

“As you process it, you think, ‘Oh boy, this looks like something from overseas, that might be affiliated to Islam, and here we go with that again,’ ” he said.

Preparing for that possibility, Rahim has been strategizing for days with another imam, William Suhaib Webb at the 1,000-member Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center in Roxbury.

“We have to figure out a narrative,” ­Rahim said. “We’re talking about a unity service on Friday if it turns out to be what we hope it isn’t.” He and other imams will make it clear that anyone who takes a life has no right to call himself a Muslim, that whatever brand of Islam extremists may practice, it has nothing to do with the faith lived out by their congregations.

“We do so much interfaith work, we apologize so often for many of the things that do not reflect Islam,” he said.

Still, both imams know, all the work they have put into building bridges to the wider community will be threatened.

But the past few days have made Yusufi Vali, executive director of the Islamic Society of Boston, more optimistic that those bridges are strong enough to withstand an onslaught.

“I’m proud to be a Bostonian,” he said. “The way our community has bonded together has been an amazing feeling inside this tragedy.”

As he spoke, three Boston police cruisers and one state trooper sat outside the mosque, just in case. Since Monday, he has heard from officials at two local temples ­offering support: “It may be hard being a Muslim in Boston this week,” one e-mail read. “If there is anything we can do, from one congregation to another, please let me know.” A longtime Mission Hill resident, worried about a possible backlash, offered to gather neighbors who could escort Muslim women to the grocery store.

“This is what Boston is about, right?” ­Vali said.

Yes, that is what we are, or try to be.

But please, let’s not put it to the test. Again.

Yvonne Abraham is a Globe columnist. She can be reached at

“[H]ard to be a Muslim”? Well, how about, being an 8-year-old Christian boy standing at the finish line to watch his father run the Boston Marathon, standing next to the Muslim jihadist who planted the bomb which minutes later killed him? Or the man whose legs were blown off below the knees minutes after the bomber, looking him straight in the eye, placed the weapon of mass destruction on the ground right next to him? “[P]ossible backlash”? Like what? Like not trusting anyone who espouses a faith which, when it is not encouraging its adherents to commit violent jihad, is sanctioning such terrorism, with no questions asked?


November 5, 2012

© 2012 jbjd

Assume, for the sake of argument, that FOX News is both unfair and unbalanced. (And just because according to the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, MSNBC is even more unfair and unbalanced, doesn’t mean, it’s right! Likewise, ignore CNN’s Candy Crowley, so-called moderator of the Presidential debate, who insinuated herself into the exchange for the purpose of establishing the false meme that, as early as September 12, 2012, Obama called the September 11 assault on Benghazi a terrorist attack. After all, she apologized, on CNN, immediately after the debate was over.)

Further, assume FOX reporters and analysts like Jennifer Griffin and Catherine Herridge continue to focus on various aspects of the murders in Benghazi only for political reasons, namely, to draw support away from President Obama and onto Governor Romney. (I won’t guess the reason you attribute to the recent coverage from Eli Lake at The Daily Beast; or ABC’s Jake Tapper, or David Ignatius from the Washington Post…)

And assume that, before yesterday, November 4; CBS’ on-line version of “60 Minutes” featuring Steve Kroft’s interview of President Obama on September 12, 2012 had this part of the story right, namely, Obama called Benghazi a terrorist attack from the beginning (notwithstanding 2 weeks later, he told the U.N. General Assembly, this was a spontaneous riot triggered by a Mohammed video).

Okay. But on November 4, CBS finally released video of that same Kroft interview of Obama, only now edited to include snippets which they had previously omitted and which arguably had contributed to a false interpretation that the President had really called the September 11 attack against Ambassador Stevens,  “terrorism,” as early as  September 12. (RealClearPolitics featured the video on their front page today.)

As you can see (and hear); regardless of whether Obama says he said on day 1 this was a terrorist attack; obviously, he did not.;60minutes

Now, read today’s FOX analysis that President Obama lied in the 3rd debate against Governor Romney, when he – the President – insisted he had been calling the attack in Benghazi a terrorist attack, all along.

What President Obama really said in that ’60 Minutes’ interview about Benghazi

Know what this means? As a fair and balanced consumer of news; you need to recalibrate your assumptions.

P.S. You may ask; except for its use as political capital, does it even matter precisely when the President called Benghazi a terrorist attack, anyway? Yes, indeed it does. Because as you will see; under the U.S. Code and numerous policies and procedures promulgated by everyone from the DoD to the DoS; the President’s response obligations are triggered by whether this event was considered a terrorist attack. Furthermore, determining whether pre-attack conditions should rightly have triggered conduct intended to forestall the events of September 11, is also critical to a full analysis of what went wrong. That is, investigators must determine not only what the President knew but also when he knew it.


October 28, 2012

©2012 jbjd

In what became known as the “Great Compromise,” attendees at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 formulated a bi-cameral Congress, with one body – the Senate – consisting of 2 (two) citizens from each state; and the other body – the House of Representatives – consisting of 1 (one) citizen fronting for each 30,000 citizens in the state. In this way, the Congressional power of the smallest states, whose populations could be said to be ‘over-represented’ when it came to number of citizens per each Senator; was offset  by the power of the largest states when it came to number of Representatives resulting from superior population. The Constitution and the Idea of Compromise

If we Americans better understood that, the Legislative branch of government is predicated on the fact, this Constitutional republic functions through a representational government, which is intended to fairly apportion power among all of the constituent states; and that, Electors are chosen consistent with this principle, that is, the number of Electors in each state equals the number of U.S. Senators (2) plus the number of U.S. Representatives, which varies with population; then, many of us might not be so eager to scrap the current system and replace it with a one-person-one-vote scheme more consistent with what some mistakenly characterize is, in fact, a Democracy.

To say nothing of the fact that when we finally get around to shoring up our election laws so as to guarantee that only the Presidential candidates Constitutionally qualified for the job may appear on the ballot and subsequently be voted for by Electors in any one state; our endeavors will not be offset by lax conditions allowing anyone to get on the ballot or be elected President by Electors, in another.


October 24, 2012

©2012 jbjd

Today, in a calculated display of hubris rivaled only by a production spawned from President Obama’s re-election campaign, Donald Trump has unveiled his much touted October “bombshell“: a “deal” to entice Mr. Obama to produce both his college and passport applications and records. Trump promises that jumping through this hoop “by October 31,” and “to my satisfaction,” and “if it’s complete,” will yield a check for $5,000,000 to Obama’s designated ‘charity.’ (I put the word ‘charity’ in single quotes because in addition to listing a well known outfit like “American Cancer Society”; he lists not only the umbrella enterprise of “AIDS research”; but also the generalized category “inner city children in Chicago.”) He couches his request in terms of acting on behalf of the people, to end their “questions” and “anger.” Yes, he knows that the President will be doing a “great service for the country” by allowing them to “know something about their President.” In short, by releasing the documents Trump mentioned, the President suddenly will “become transparent.”

Of course, some of us know, no “thing” coming out of this dog-and-pony show will inform anyone where Barack Obama was born.

For starters, notice that Trump qualified his reference to Obama’s “long-form birth certificate” by adding (after an obvious pause) “or whatever it may be.” It’s the “whatever it may be” which should have been the tip-off, Trump is wearing his circus barker hat. Why do you suppose he is ‘hedging his bets’ as to the ‘document’s’ authenticity?

As I explained in SHE SAID / HE SAID: SCRIPTING the 04.27.11 LAUNCH of PRESIDENT OBAMA’S LONG FORM BIRTH CERTIFICATE back on April 1, 2012 (and other articles linked therein), what was released on April 27 was the political ad campaign conceived, executed, and launched by the President’s re-election campaign, the contents of which were fully protected by the 1st Amendment’s prohibition on restrictions on political speech. Featuring the image of the mock-up of a long-form birth certificate, the ads ran on internet sites such as (Emphasis added.)

Do you suppose that Mr. Trump, in April 2011 still a possible contender for the Presidency; doesn’t recognize a political ad campaign when he sees one?

Trump asserts he forced the President’s April 27 release of this advertising image: “I’m very honored to have gotten him to release his long-form birth certificate…” Presumably, he means, in a desperate attempt to quell doubts as to the President’s birth status which have swirled unabated for more than 3 years, since the primary in 2008; it was his – Trump’s – many references to concerns as to whether Mr. Obama is a natural born citizen, uttered as a (pseudo) Presidential candidate in the spring of 2011 which compelled the release of the document at this particular time. (Again, crediting the release of the certificate – “or whatever it may be” – to the President, as opposed to correctly attributing the release to the President’s re-election campaign, cannot have been an innocent oversight.) But, of course, Trump had no more to do with either the substance or the timing of the April 27 appearance of the long form image; than any of the other millions of Americans challenging the narrative of Obama’s birth and demanding some sort of documentation. In fact, its release was triggered by the formal announcement of the President’s re-election campaign 3 weeks earlier, on April 4, and the accompanying mandatory filing with the FEC which then allowed the solicitation of funds in his name by the newly formed re-election campaign, funds which the campaign immediately translated into expenditures on political advertising such as the long-form ad. In other words, it was the official (read, legal) kick-off of the President’s re-election campaign which provided the first opportunity to address what were ongoing eligibility issues that could jeopardize his re-election. (The formal kick-off of the President’s campaign was also accompanied by previously scheduled events associated with the re-election campaign, including a stint on Oprah and a major NY fundraiser, also on the 27th. Id.)

SHE SAID / HE SAID contains not only a lucid (albeit lengthy) explanation of the long-form image as a campaign expenditure; but also references several other articles on the “jbjd” blog, dispelling the long-form myth, including  HOW to WRITE SMART CANDIDATE ELIGIBILITY LAWS in your STATE (and make applying to get on the ballot harder than applying to get into Harvard), which points to the lethal problems associated with allowing candidate ‘self-authentication.’ Indeed, did you notice that Trump’s deal for Obama’s records never specifies who must transmit these records, or to whom these records must be submitted? And while he says, the documents must be “complete” and to his “satisfaction”; he never specifies, who will determine whether these criteria are met. Because he knows better.

For example, during the recent Presidential debates; Obama verified the authenticity of some of his ‘facts’ by citing their source was “reporters.” What if these same “reporters” verify any forthcoming records? (See Pooh-poohing Pulitzer) And recall that Annenberg Political Fact Check staffers with no expertise in document authentication confirmed, the mock-up of the President’s Certification of Live Birth, and accompanying ad copy, were real. (See RUMORS, LIES, AND UNSUBSTANTIATED ‘FACTS’) Assuming she is being sincere in this heated exchange with John Sununu from the Romney campaign; Reporter Soledad O’Brien is only one of millions of Americans who still wrongly believe, what APFC says must be true.

UPDATE 09.17.15: The original video is no longer available. In its stead, here is a link to a page explaining what happened between Ms. Soledad and Mr. Sununu on CNN; and points to the recent metamorphosis to the ‘factcheck’ URL.

In sum, Donald Trump knows better than to contend that any ‘documents’ forthcoming through this publicity stunt will increase the knowledge of the American people about the circumstances of our President’s birth; or diminish our ire at what many of us feel is a con. On the contrary; by failing to take advantage of media opportunities like this, to educate the public that, legally, the April 11, 2011 long-form release by the Obama re-election campaign was only part of a political ad launch; and worse, by cynically encouraging the Obama campaign this opportunity to repeat that ploy; Trump only broadens the con, and exacerbates our ire.

Obviously, Mr. Trump thinks most Americans are as foolish as does President Obama.


September 26, 2012

© 2012 jbjd

Whether supporting Israel means, endorsing its people as individuals or, its government; one cannot support Israel without supporting Muslims.

They are in the Knesset, the Israeli counterpart to our Congress.

From the Jewish Virtual Library:

Here are the names and bios of current members of Ra-am-Ta’al, from the official web site of the Knesset: Talab El-Sana, Masud Ganaim, Ibrahim Sarsur, and Ahmad Tibi.  And, as you can see, all are native Israelis. (That is, they list Israel as their place of birth.)

Know what this means? That charging the subway posters championed by Pamela Geller, which do not mention Muslims, are nonetheless anti-Muslim because she is a Zionist, that is, she is zealously pro-Israel; makes absolutely no sense.



September 12, 2012

©2012 jbjd

It is noon here on the east coast; the news is flooding in on events in Libya and already, the propaganda is saturating the airwaves along predictable partisan lines. And, as usual, unless you take in divergent viewpoints, you will get the story all wrong.

First, especially for those of you who have only gotten your news from blogs; please, listen to Secretary Clinton’s live briefing from the U.S. State Department.


Secretary Clinton’s remarks can help to place in their proper perspective those reports and images found on the likes of  Drudge on the one end or The Boston Globe on the other; I was particularly struck by the clarity offered by just a few lines, not necessarily spoken in this order.

When the attack came yesterday, Libyans stood and fought to defend our post, some were wounded. Libyans carried Chris’ body to the hospital and they helped rescue and lead others to safety.

(Just because you see an image of a man being carried by crowds does not mean, they are doing him harm.)

…we must be clear-eyed in our grief. This was an attack by a small and savage group, not the people or the government of Libya.

(According to the CIA, Libya is 97% Muslim, Thus, it is safe to say, most of the embassy attackers and murderers were Muslim. If you agree that in using the word “savage” to describe those Muslim Libyans who attacked and murdered embassy staffers, Ms. Clinton referred only to the conduct of the brutes and not to either their nationality or religion then, please, leave Pamela Geller alone.)


July 16, 2012

© 2012 jbjd and kjcanon

Given current election laws; the only way to keep an ineligible candidate out of the White House is to keep the candidate’s name off the ballot, in a state that only allows to be printed on the ballot the names of candidates federally qualified for the job. But what happens when election officials in a ballot eligibility state – like Texas – are determined to ignore those laws? Then, the only way preserve the integrity of the ballot; is to take those officials to court.

View this document on Scribd


Please, contribute to THE 2012 TEXAS BALLOT CHALLENGE challenge.


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