Prepared for the
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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DAILY ALERT

December 23, 2005

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In-Depth Issues:

Britain Signs Landmark Eurofighter Contract with Saudis - Angela Jameson (Times-UK)
    BAE Systems was celebrating the first big export order for the Eurofighter Wednesday after Britain and Saudi Arabia signed a memorandum of understanding that could secure £10 billion of work for the British firm and its sub-contractors.
    It is thought that up to 72 Typhoon jets will be delivered to the kingdom from 2008 to replace British-made Tornados and other jets.
    The agreement will secure 4,000 jobs at Rolls-Royce, which supplies the engines for the jet.
    See also Saudi Plane Deal a Blow to UK's RAF - Ian Bruce (Glasgow Herald-UK)
    Some of the RAF's frontline fighter squadrons could be left flying 25-year-old Tornado aircraft while Saudi Arabia takes delivery of the batch of new Eurofighter Typhoon jets meant to replace them.
    The claim follows an announcement that Britain is to divert to Riyadh up to 72 of the 89 Typhoons on order in a deal to be paid in oil.

    See also Saudi Boycott of Israel to Continue (Arab News-Saudi Arabia)
    Saudi Arabia announced Wednesday that it would maintain its first-degree boycott of Israeli products despite joining the World Trade Organization.
    An official at the Commerce and Industry Ministry denied reports that the kingdom had lifted the boycott. "The kingdom has lifted only the second and third-degree boycott of Israel," the official said.


Israel HighWay
- December 22, 2005

Issue of the Week:
    The fate of Christians and other minorities in the Middle East

Lebanon Slams U.S. Request to Hand Over Hizballah Hijacker - Rym Ghazal (Daily Star-Lebanon)
    The Lebanese government has criticized the U.S. demand that Lebanon hand over a Hizballah hijacker released by Germany last week after serving 19 years in jail for hijacking a U.S. airliner and killing an American passenger.
    Judiciary sources denied that Hammadi was being held temporarily in custody.
    Hammadi's brother, Abdel-Hadi, who is a senior special security official within Hizballah, has been reported to have Hammadi residing in his home.


Witness Upstages Saddam - Adrian Blomfield (Telegraph-UK)
    It was the first time since he went on trial that Saddam Hussein seemed lost for words. Instead the limelight was taken by a softly spoken witness.
    Ali Hassan al-Haidari was dignified, erudite, compelling - and brave. Haidari recalled the 1982 massacre at Dujail, where Saddam is accused of orchestrating the mass reprisals in retaliation for an alleged attempt on his life.
     Haidari, who was only 14 at the time, told how he and all 43 members of his family were rounded up and taken to the Ba'ath party headquarters in Dujail.
    "I saw my brother being tortured in front of my eyes," he said, looking straight at Saddam. "I was terrified. They would take one of us away and he would return in a sheet, dripping in blood."
    Seven of his brothers were executed, he testified.


U.S. Army Finds Ammunition Buried in Iraq - Ryan Lenz (AP/ABC News)
    U.S. soldiers in the northern Iraqi desert dug up more than 1,000 aging rockets and missiles wrapped in plastic, Army officials said Tuesday.
    Commanders in the 101st Airborne Division said an Iraqi tipped them off to the buried weapons, perhaps an indication that residents in this largely Sunni Arab region about 150 miles north of Baghdad are beginning to warm up to coalition forces.


IDF Chief in Turkey to Discuss Military Cooperation with Ankara (AP/Ha'aretz)
    Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz arrived in Turkey on Thursday for talks expected to focus on military cooperation and Iran's nuclear program.
    Turkey is Israel's closest ally in the region and the two countries have close trade and military ties.


Jordan Picks New Spy Chief to Fight Militants - Suleiman al-Khalidi (Reuters)
    Jordan's King Abdullah appointed on Tuesday a new head of the country's powerful spy agency in a move to boost its capability to counter the growing threat of al-Qaeda leader in Iraq Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
    Mohammad Zahabi, a Western-trained career intelligence officer, replaced Samih Asfoura as chief of the General Intelligence Department (GID), known widely as the Mukhabarat.
    "This move has more to do with putting at the helm the most qualified and competent men to handle the greater challenges posed by al-Qaeda and Zarqawi," a security source said.
    "The threat by al-Qaeda against Jordan has never been as grave and deadly as in these times. Zahabi's ability to raise the morale of the GID will be critical in the battle against the terrorists," said another security source.


Gunmen Block Gaza Road to Demand Jobs (Reuters)
    Gunmen from the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades blocked the main highway linking the north and south of the Gaza Strip on Thursday to demand jobs from the Palestinian Authority, witnesses said.


IDF Gets Three New Female Pilots - Yossi Yehushua (Ynet News)
    Three new female pilots, including one combat pilot, are expected to complete the Israel Air Force's pilot course next week, joining nine others who are serving as combat pilots, navigators, transport pilots, and helicopter pilots.


U.S. Halts Arabic Magazine Meant to Boost U.S. Image - Saul Hudson (Reuters)
    The State Department, which sponsors Hi, an Arabic-language lifestyle magazine aimed at improving America's image among young Arabs, has suspended publication because it was unclear how widely the $4.5 million magazine was read.
    A series of studies have criticized U.S.-funded Arabic-language media, such as Radio Sawa and the satellite TV station Alhurra, for failing to attract a large audience.


World's Debts to Israel Double to $23B - Zeev Klein (Globes)
    The Israeli economy has turned from a borrower into a lender on world markets.
    The world's debts to Israel totaled $23 billion at the end of September, double the $11.5 billion owed Israel at the end of December 2004, according to figures published Monday by the Bank of Israel.


From Russia with Love, Via the U.S. - Daphna Berman (Ha'aretz)
    A delegation of Russian American Jews for Israel (RAJI) launched a campaign this week to raise money for immigrant soldiers without families in Israel.
    About 6,000 immigrants, the vast majority of them from the former Soviet Union, are "lone soldiers."


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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:

  • Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Leader Calls Holocaust a Myth
    The head of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, the main opposition force in parliament, echoed Iran's president on Thursday in describing the World War Two Holocaust of European Jews as a myth. "Western democracy has attacked everyone who does not share the vision of the sons of Zion as far as the myth of the Holocaust is concerned," Mohamed Mahdi Akef said. He accused the U.S. House of Representatives of hypocrisy when it threatened to cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority if the Islamist movement Hamas takes part in January elections. He also criticized EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana for saying that Europeans might think twice about aid to the Palestinians if Hamas members were in parliament. Hamas says it is an extension of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and believes in armed struggle to replace Israel with an Islamic state. (Reuters)
        See also Hamas Coordinating with Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood - Khaled Abu Toameh
    Hamas and Egypt's banned Muslim Brotherhood, which have historical ties, have begun coordinating their moves ahead of next month's Palestinian parliamentary elections, PA security officials said on Monday. Meanwhile, Said Siam, a senior Hamas official in the Gaza Strip, announced on Monday that his movement was planning to form the new PA cabinet after it wins a majority of seats in parliament.
        One of the Hamas candidates for the parliamentary elections, Miriam Farhat, met in Cairo over the weekend with Mahdi Akef, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood. Farhat emerged as the "mother of martyrs" after she appeared on a Hamas videotape encouraging her 17-year-old son, Muhammad, to participate in a suicide mission. Farhat said that Hamas's decision to participate in the parliamentary elections does not mean that the Islamic movement has abandoned the "military option." Akef, who held a warm reception for her, declared that the "resistance was the only way to end the Israeli presence in Palestine." He added: "We welcome the Jews in Palestine only as individuals, but we don't agree to their presence there as a state." (Jerusalem Post)
  • Israel Provides $25 Million to UN for Gaza Redevelopment Project
    The UN Development Program's Program of Assistance to the Palestinian People announced Thursday that it has received a $25 million grant from the government of Israel for the clearance and rehabilitation of the sites of the evacuated Israeli settlements in the Gaza Strip. UNDP was asked to undertake the rehabilitation project by Israel, the PA, and the Office of the Special Envoy for the Quartet, James Wolfensohn. More than 1.2 million tons of debris and rubble are to be cleared and recycled for use as road paving and building materials, employing several hundred Palestinian workers. (United Nations)
  • Iraqi Sunnis Diverting Anger from Israel to Iran - Nancy A. Youssef
    Since results from Iraq's national assembly election trickled out this week showing that Shiite Muslims - many backed by neighboring Iran - would dominate the new parliament, Sunni Muslims have begun to ask: Is Israel really Iraq's enemy, or is it neighboring Iran? "I think that Iran is more dangerous to Iraq than Israel because of the assassinations that the Iranians have been doing," said Added Hamid Hashim, 30, referring to recent killings of prominent Sunnis. "I hated Israel before the war, but now I hate Iran even more."
        Mithal al-Alusi ran for the new parliament while calling for stronger ties between Israel and Iraq, and appears to have won a seat. In May 2004, al-Alusi publicly admitted to visiting Israel the year before. His only two sons were assassinated in January because of his support of Iraqi-Israeli cooperation, he said. But he said that some Iraqis are warming to a stronger relationship with Israel, in part because they are frightened of Iran's influence. "We don't have border problems with Israel. We don't have historical problems with Israel," he said, just Iran. (Knight Ridder/Miami Herald)
  • Nuclear Monitoring of Muslims in U.S. Done Without Search Warrants - David Kaplan
    In search of a terrorist nuclear bomb, the federal government since 9/11 has run a far-reaching, top secret program to monitor radiation levels at over a hundred Muslim sites in the Washington, D.C., area, including mosques, homes, businesses, and warehouses, plus similar sites in at least five other cities. In numerous cases, the monitoring required investigators to go on to the property under surveillance, although no search warrants or court orders were ever obtained.
        The nuclear surveillance program began in early 2002 and has been run by the FBI and the Department of Energy's Nuclear Emergency Support Team (NEST). At its peak, the effort involved three vehicles in Washington, D.C., monitoring 120 sites per day, nearly all of them Muslim targets drawn up by the FBI. For some ten months, officials conducted daily monitoring, and they have resumed daily checks during periods of high threat. The program has also operated in at least five other cities when threat levels have risen: Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, New York, and Seattle. In Washington, the sites monitored have included prominent mosques and office buildings in suburban Maryland and Virginia. (U.S. News)
  • News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:

  • Israel: Rocket Attacks from Gaza "an Act of War" - Arieh O'Sullivan
    To defend Israel from Palestinian Kassam rocket attacks, the Israel Air Force will aerially monitor districts in the Gaza Strip most likely to be launching-sites and open fire if suspicious activity is spotted. Unlike recent army responses to rocket attacks, potential air force targets will be populated areas, and not empty spaces. The IDF said it would notify civilians in targeted areas a number of hours before any attacks occur.
        "Until now, the rockets have been terrorist acts, but now they constitute an act of war," said Ra'anan Gissin, a senior adviser to Prime Minister Sharon, "and we will react with commensurate severity." Gissin said that a new operation would aim to create an "intolerable situation" for the population in Gaza to pressure the Palestinian Authority into clamping down on cross-border attacks. (Jerusalem Post)
        See also Mofaz Orders Creation of "Security Zone" in Northern Gaza to Protect Israel Against Palestinian Rockets - Uri Glickman
    In light of the continuing Kassam rocket fire, Defense Minister Mofaz ordered the security establishment to continue targeted interceptions of terrorists and to ban the movement of Palestinians in areas from which rockets are being fired; anyone who enters these zones risks being fired upon. (Maariv-Hebrew)
  • Palestinian Living in Israel Drove Suicide Bomber to Hadera - Arieh O'Sullivan
    A Palestinian man who was allowed to live in Israeli as part of the family reunification program drove the suicide bomber and his handler to Hadera where they carried out an attack last October which killed six people. Fakri Mantzur, originally from Atil near Tulkarm, had moved to the Israeli Arab town of Jat. According to security sources, Mantzur knew full well his passenger was a suicide bomber. (Jerusalem Post)
        See also Three Molotov Cocktails Thrown at Israeli Car
    Three Molotov cocktails were thrown at an Israeli car near Ramallah on Thursday, Army Radio reported. No injuries were reported. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Murderous Hamas Cell in Hebron - Amos Harel
    Last week Yossi Shok, a resident of Beit Haggai, was killed in the Hebron area. Shok, the father of five, picked up two sisters, girls from his settlement, on his way home. A car overtook them just one kilometer from home and a hail of deadly gunfire hit Shok and the girls. The lives of the two hitchhikers were saved thanks to a toolbox that stopped the terrorists' bullets. Within seconds, the murderers turned onto a dirt road that leads to one of the nearby Palestinian villages. The murderous Hamas cell in Hebron had struck again. This cell has been operating in the area for more than half a year.
        Traditionally in this area, the quality of intelligence has been problematic. The Islamic Jihad and Hamas networks that operate in the town and its environs maintain strict compartmentalization, and rely on a clan structure - a brother, a cousin, at most a neighbor. It is difficult to penetrate them. The target is always easy: a group of children at a hitchhiking post near a settlement or an unarmored civilian car in which the only person bearing arms inside will not be able to react before he is hit. In this way six Israeli civilians have been killed, three of them children, in three shooting attacks. (Ha'aretz)
  • New Crossing Terminal Opens North of Jerusalem - Amira Hass
    The West Bank Civil Administration sponsored a tour for diplomats of the new Kalandia crossing terminal north of Jerusalem last Monday. While representatives of the EU boycotted the tour, representatives of the American Consulate and the Australian mission participated.
        The pedestrian component consists of a roofed waiting area, five roofed lanes leading up to a number of iron turnstiles, and an electromagnetic gate with X-ray equipment to check belongings and coats. One lane is reserved for school children in the morning. Soldiers in three closed buildings between the lanes examine the identity cards of those crossing. A pedestrian who sets off a buzzer is taken to a side room to be searched. Two special gates are for the passage of wheelchair users and baby carriages. (Ha'aretz)
  • Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):

    Egypt

  • Stand With Ayman Nour - Editorial
    Egypt's Ayman Nour, a 41-year-old member of parliament and a secular democrat, is back in prison, having been deprived by fraud of his parliamentary seat. On Saturday, an Egyptian judge notorious for handling Mubarak's dirty work is expected to sentence him to prison. Nour is one of Egypt's foremost proponents of a secular liberal democracy, credited with 8% of the vote in the presidential election. The charge against him, forgery, was proved a fabrication five months ago, when one of the principal witnesses recanted in court, saying he had been forced by state security police to invent his testimony. If Bush's commitment to freedom fighters means anything at all, he cannot allow this blatant act of injustice to go unchallenged.
        Each year, the U.S. provides Mubarak's regime with $1.8 billion in military and economic aid; without that money for his generals it's doubtful the aged president could remain in office. Mubarak's vindictive persecution of Nour, whom he perceives as a political rival to his son Gamal, has outraged much of Egypt's political establishment, which would quietly welcome U.S. intervention. The imprisonment of Nour will provide Bush with an opportunity - and an imperative - to fight for the cause of democracy in the heart of the Arab Middle East. Standing with Ayman Nour means standing against military aid for Mubarak until this democratic reformer is free. (Washington Post)

    Syria

  • For the First Time in Months, Assad Can Relax - Michael Young
    For the first time in months, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad can relax. After facing international pressure for its presumed role in the Feb. 14 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, Syria last week made the UN Security Council blink. The consequences will be felt hardest in Lebanon, which has yet to break free from Syria's stranglehold. Unless the Bush administration and its European allies, particularly France, reverse this trend, they risk losing everything they have worked for in the country during the past year.
        The Lebanese worry that the Bush administration has cut a deal, whereby Syria will give it assistance in Iraq in exchange for breathing space in Lebanon. The complexities of a Security Council investigation are becoming all too apparent: To retain unanimity in the Council, the U.S. and France have ceded much ground to Russia and China, who hesitate to punish Syria. Russia in particular fears that collapse of the Assad regime might lead to chaos, and is backed in this by the Arab states. In Washington, where Iraq withdrawal mode has taken over, "realists" enamored with stability are making a comeback, and also seem to prefer Assad to the unknown. The international community cannot continue backing a UN investigation of the Syrian regime while also saving Assad's bacon.
        The Security Council must use the next two months to definitively determine if Syria is serious about cooperating with the UN inquiry. If it is not, the Council can impose sanctions on senior Syrian officials, or on the economy as a whole, including oil exports. It can issue a new resolution that places the burden of forming an international or mixed tribunal on the UN's shoulders, rather than on that of the Lebanese. And it can expand the UN commission's mandate to include all recent political crimes, on the grounds that these are extensions of the Hariri affair. The writer, a Lebanese national, is opinion editor at the Daily Star in Beirut. (Wall Street Journal, 23Dec05)
  • Alawi Tribal Politics and Syria's Future - Mordechai Nisan
    For the past 40 years, a small, historically marginal religious minority has dominated and ruled Sunni-majority Syria. This Alawi people, never considered to be Arab, adhere to a religious stream so divergent from Islam that its members were not considered Muslims. Indeed, they turned mosques that intermittent alien Muslim rulers imposed upon them into horse stables. They did not fast during Ramadan, or go on the haj to Mecca. Yet the Alawis, only 12% of Syria's population, seized power in Damascus in 1966, holding it until today.
        The disintegration of the Alawi tribal state in Damascus could unleash the forces of centrifugal fragmentation in Syria to encompass, in addition to the Alawis based in northwestern Syria, the Druse in the south and Kurds in the northeast. The "Zionist virus," as the Arabs call it, would then spread and grant liberty to small peoples on the model of the Jews of Israel. Buoyed by a dialectical twist of history, the political transformations would serve Israel's strategic benefit. A tamed or divided Syria would neutralize Israel's last major Arab protagonist, after Egypt and Iraq, from active aggression. (Jerusalem Post)

    Iran

  • A Fire Alarm in Iran - Editorial
    Iran's president is a menace. A nation led by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad needs to be kept as far from nuclear weapons as possible. Ahmadinejad's denial of the Holocaust and call for destruction of Israel should sound alarms far beyond the Middle East and Europe; the UN needs to be ready with sanctions if Tehran refuses to yield on atomic weapons and open all its nuclear facilities to international inspections. (Los Angeles Times)
  • Not Just Israel's Problem - Amir Taheri
    The way Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad tells it, the Islamic Republic is well on the way to establishing itself as "the leader of the Muslim world" in what he describes as "the coming clash of civilizations." In a speech in Teheran last Sunday, Ahmadinejad claimed that the Islamic Republic had already won the first round against "arrogant Crusader-Zionist powers" led by the U.S. One sign of that victory, according to Ahmadinejad, is the decision by the EU trio of Britain, Germany, and France to resume negotiations on the Iranian nuclear dossier. The trio had walked out of the talks five months ago and stated it would not return until Iran stopped uranium processing at a plant in Isfahan. Well, Iran did not stop, and the Europeans returned to the negotiating table. "The Europeans have returned with their tails between their legs," says Shariat Madari, editor of the daily Kayhan. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Behind Iran's Hard-Line on Israel - Karim Sadjadpour and Ray Takeyh
    At a time when most Arab governments, including the elected Palestinian leadership, have come to accept Israel's existence as an unalterable fact, non-Arab Iran continues to call for eradication of the Jewish state. In actuality, however, the Middle Eastern country where Ahmadinejad's declarations resonate least is Iran. By pressing a dogmatic position on Israel, Ahmadinejad may perceive an opportunity to rekindle the long-extinguished revolutionary fires and reclaim Iran's leadership of radical Islam.
        There exists no inherent reason why the Israeli-Palestinian struggle should be an overriding concern to the average Iranian. Iran has no territorial disputes with Israel, no Palestinian refugee problem, a long history of contentious relations with the Arab world, and an even longer history of tolerance vis-a-vis the Jewish people. To this day, the Jewish community in Iran is the largest in the Middle East outside of Israel. Karim Sadjadpour is an analyst with the International Crisis Group. Ray Takeyh is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. (Boston Globe)

    Other Issues

  • Wanted: a Caliphate - Amira Hass
    "We are Muslims," says Munir, a Hamas activist and former member of Fatah, who is not an official Hamas spokesman. "We vote for Islam because Islam is the solution - on every level....From a religious perspective, Muslims cannot legitimize a State of Israel in this region. The Islamic movement would lose its identity if it recognized Israel as a state."
        "People don't turn to religion out of despair. Palestinians are religious by nature. They are what you call mesorati [Munir uses the Hebrew word] - traditional. An overwhelming majority are mesorati. And secondly, the PA may have failed, but in the meantime, the Palestinians have grown up. This process of maturation has led them to seek a better alternative." (Ha'aretz)
  • Another Useless UN Conference - Alyssa A. Lappen
    On Dec. 13, I attended an emergency conference at the UN's New York headquarters to discuss "Protection of Religious Sites and Prevention of the Use of Violence to Incite Terrorism/Violence." It was called by the Ethics Initiatives Consortium (EIC) and the World Conference of Religions for Peace (WCRP). EIC co-chairs Prof. Amir al-Islam and Shoshana Bekerman wrote in their invitation that they hoped "to prevent future tragedies such as the desecration of the Gush Katif synagogues." Unfortunately, the conference suggested that the UN will do nothing to stop murder or desecration of holy sites in the name of religion - for it seems that no one is willing to confront Muslim denial that fanatics use Islam to incite religious hatred and destruction - much less stop the fanatics.
        Talal A. Turfe, co-chairman of the National Conference for Community and Justice, proposed that the conference adopt a project to protect holy sites in Jerusalem. No one, not even the Israeli rabbis, protested. In reality, the only Jerusalem religious site in danger from human destruction is the Temple Mount, which Muslims have excavated, thereby destroying priceless Jewish artifacts and undermining the Mount's foundation itself. (FrontPageMagazine)
  • Fighting Sheikh Zayed's Funding of Islamic Studies at Harvard Divinity School: A Case Study - Jonathan Jaffit
    A $2.5 million endowment was made to the Harvard Divinity School by Sheikh Zayed, the dictatorial ruler of the emirate of Abu Dhabi, for the creation of a chair of Islamic studies. Upon learning of this donation, Rachel Fish, a graduate student at the school, took the initiative to expose Sheikh Zayed's multiple abuses of human rights, including the use of child slave labor, and his indulgence in anti-Semitic propaganda. This led to the closure of the Zayed Center, the sheikh's think tank in Abu Dhabi. Fish's almost single-handed action led Harvard to suspend the funding for lengthy investigations. Ultimately, Sheikh Zayed withdrew his donation. (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • Israel's Reborn Tech Boom - Neal Sandler
    For Israel's high-tech industry, it's beginning to look a lot like the 1990s. Demand for high-tech workers is up almost 19% this year, foreign investment rose sharply in 2005, and exports continue to climb. The number of new startups rose for a second year in a row. Economic recoveries in the U.S., Western Europe, and the Far East have sparked an upturn in demand, with 85% of the local high-tech industry's production earmarked for foreign markets.
        Israeli civilian high-tech exports rose by nearly 10% in 2005, to $16.6 billion, representing nearly half of Israel's industrial exports, the highest percentage anywhere in the world. In 2005, local and foreign venture-capital funds plowed $1.5 billion into new ventures in communications, software, the Internet, and life sciences. Foreign investment totaled $6.8 billion in the first three quarters of 2005.
        On Dec. 1, Intel announced that it was building a $3.5 billion chip plant in Israel, the largest investment ever by an industrial company in Israel. Israel was responsible for the development of Intel's Centrino mobile technology that powers millions of laptops. Other big names in high tech - including Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Vishay Intertechnology, IBM, and Siemens - have all announced large-scale investments or have acquired Israeli startups in recent months. Most projections are for Israel's economy to grow by more than 5% in 2006. (Business Week)
  • Observations:

    Within the Gates - Fouad Ajami (U.S. News)

    • An opponent of the autocracy of President Hosni Mubarak, Yasser Sirri had initially fled to Yemen, then to Sudan. He found refuge in London, where he runs an "Islamic observation center" and carries on with the "holy struggle" against "ungodly" Arab regimes and their supporters in the West.
    • The Islamists are now within the gates. They fled the fires and the terrors of the Arab-Islamic world but brought ruin with them. This new Islamism mocks the borders of nations and the very idea of nationality. "We may carry their nationalities," a Wahhabi preacher decreed recently, "but we belong to our religion." The geography of Islam has altered. A religion of Afro-Asia has migrated westward.
    • Then the migrants were joined, in the 1980s, by preachers and militant men who had fought and lost cruel, bloody wars against the regimes in Syria, Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, and other despotic lands. These plotters hated the West but were drawn by its magnetic power. There were liberties in western Europe to be used, and welfare subsidies, and laws against extradition.
    • London was the most accommodating of cities. It was there that the big Arabic newspapers, denied oxygen by the repressive regimes of Araby, were published. And it was there that men and women from Arab and Islamic lands built new lives, free to live the life of the faith.
    • The vulnerability of Europe to the furies of this malignant Islamism is a defining feature of its contemporary life. Still, liberty is not a suicide pact. We should be done with the search for "explanations" that dignify the hatreds, that attribute them to Western deeds and policies. We should see the new hatred dressed in religious garb for what it is: a war against the very order of contemporary life.


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