Aug 24, 2008

A Case for Israel

By Sammy Levine

Israel is a sprawling, industrialized Democracy where its citizens enjoy freedom and individual liberty comparable to that found in America. The freest Arabs in the Middle East reside in Israel, and the nation desperately wants peace.

Outside of the gates of Israel, however, Middle Eastern dictators rule their respective nations with an iron fist, by depriving their own citizens of basic liberties, treating their women like second rate citizens, and openly advocating for the extermination of the Jews.

One such dictator is the president of Iran, Mahmoud Ajhmadinejad. In the past, Ajhmadinejad has labeled Israel, "a rotten stinking corpse." Recently he has called for Israel to be, "wiped off the map." Most seriously, the dictator is now seeking Nuclear weapons. Does anyone doubt his purpose?

Although some blame Israel for the instability in the Middle East, a brief look at the history of the Middle East will tell the real story. In 1947 the Palestinian Arabs were offered their own state, adjacent to Israel, by the United Nations partition plan (resolution 181). This offer was flatly rejected by the Arab states in the region and Palestine. Many Palestinian's then left their homes because they were promised a swift return by the five neighboring Arab countries, who had just declared war on Israel, and were planning to annihilate the Jews. However, Israel won its War of Independence in 1948 against unbelievable odds.

In 1967, all of Israel’s neighbors mobilized for a simultaneous attack against the Jewish state. However, Israel launched a pre-emptive strike, ending the war in only six days, an incredible military achievement. In 1973, a coalition of Arab states, including Egypt and Syria, launched a surprise attack against Israel. As usual, Israel successfully defended itself.

Despite repeated attempts to annihilate the small nation, in the summer of 2000, Israel made an incredibly generous offer to the Palestinian Arabs that included Israeli withdrawal from 95% of the West Bank and 100% of the Gaza Strip, to form a Palestinian state. Under the arrangement, the Palestinians would control parts of Jerusalem, including most of the old city, and slivers of Israel to compensate for parts of the West Bank left out. The Palestinian's, led by the father of modern terrorism, Yasser Arafat, not only rejected this offer but responded with a new wave of suicide bombings, sparking the second intifadah.

Israel vacated most of Southern Lebanon in 1986, and all of it in 2000. Shortly after, this region was taken over by Hezbollah, a brutal terrorist organization funded by Iran, and committed to the destruction of Israel. In 2006, in a daring cross border raid, Hezbollah killed several Israeli soldiers, captured two more, and launched rockets into Israel, starting the very costly 2nd Lebanon war which led to the deaths of hundreds of Israeli's and thousands of Lebanese. About a year ago Israel returned the occupied Gaza strip to the Palestinian people, and what happened? Gaza is now controlled by Hamas, another brutal terrorist organization committed to the destruction of Israel. Since Israel vacated Gaza, over four thousand (4,000) rockets have been fired into Israel from the formerly occupied Gaza territories.

Given this pattern of past events, can there be any doubt about what will occur if Israel hands over the West Bank to the Palestinians or the Golan heights to the Syrians? Israel currently occupies these lands for national security purposes, not because of nefarious or imperialistic goals to rule the Middle East.

Amidst a clear history of repeated attempts to annihilate the Jews, some critics claim that Israel constantly uses a disproportionate amount of force against its enemies. The truth of the matter is that Israel uses much more restraint than its adversaries. While Israel, to its detriment, meticulously aims at only combatants and military targets, these militants intentionally aim their weaponry and suicide bombs at Israeli civilians. When the Israeli army accidentally kills innocent Palestinian civilians it is viewed as a true tragedy by the Israeli's that is regrettably unavoidable in the scope of war. However, when Hamas kills innocent men, women, and children in Israel, Palestinians celebrate jubilantly in the streets and hand out candy. This was the case after the terrorist attack against the yeshiva in Jerusalem a couple months ago, where 10 Jews were killed, most of them teenagers. In this example, the incredible moral disparity between the Israelis and the Palestinians is abundantly clear. Currently, Israel has the military power to annihilate the Palestinians but does not. Is there any delusion about what would happen to Israel if the roles were reversed; if Hamas, Hezbollah or Iran had this capability?

The truth of the matter is that Israel desperately wants peace, but in order for this wish to become a reality Israel needs an able and willing partner. Until radical Islam, the driving force of Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah and similar terrorist groups and states is squelched in the region, any genuine attempts by moderate Arabs to partner with Israel to make peace will be subverted and obstructed by radicals resorting to the only thing they have been successful at in the last 60 years; indiscriminate acts of terror and violence. As such, Israel must pursue an unflinching military campaign to destroy the terrorists and protect its cities.

Aug 12, 2008

Watch a Lecture: Dante's Divine Comedy

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Bush warns Russia; Medvedev orders halt to action

President Bush consulted Tuesday with fellow leaders in Eastern and Western Europe about the crisis in the former Soviet republic of Georgia while aides scrambled to evaluate a Russian promise to stop attacking its neighbor. The White House also rejected a Russian call for Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili to step down.
Earlier, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev ordered a halt to its military action in Georgia, saying the campaign had brought security in its South Ossetia region that is close to Moscow.

"The aggressor has been punished and suffered very significant losses. Its military has been disorganized," Medvedev said in a nationally televised statement.

His order came just hours after Bush's strongest statement on the fighting since it began at the end of last week. He demanded that Russia withdraw its troops from Georgia, end what he called a "dramatic and brutal escalation" of violence, and accept international mediation to end the crisis. Bush said Russia's actions had "substantially damaged Russia's standing in the world."

For more click here.

Aug 7, 2008

Communist Fidel Castro backs Barack Obama

The former president of communist Cuba, Fidel Castro, is supporting Barack Obama in the race for the White House. Castro, who stepped down in February because of continuing poor health, said the Democratic Senator was the most “advanced” candidate running for the U.S. presidency.

The compliment, however, is likely to give ammunition to Obama’s rivals. It will hand Republican nominee, Senator John McCain, an opportunity to question Mr Obama's foreign policy.

McCain has already attacked Obama because of the remarks of a top Hamas official. Ahmed Yousuf said he hoped Obama would become the U.S. president. Hamas is listed by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organisation.

In a column in Cuba’s Granma newspaper, Castro said that although he disagrees with Obama’s decision to maintain Washington's trade sanctions against Cuba, he thinks Obama is “the most progressive candidate for the U.S. presidency.”

Aug 6, 2008

The Abandonment of Classic Western Literature

By Elizabeth Kantor, Ph.D., author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to English and American Literature.

Classic Western literature has traditionally played a large role in sustaining "Western culture." If Western culture has, on balance, been a benefactor of the human race, then the abandonment of its great literature by college literature professors is a very great loss, both to students and to the long-term health of Western civilization.

Dr. Kantor argues that universities today should be teaching the classic literature of our culture to their students.

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Young Conservatives of Texas Member in the Spotlight!

Congrats to Young Conservatives of Texas at UT Austin member Brianna Becker for being the subject of this month’s student spotlight with the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute.

Brianna joins the ranks of other YCT-ers featured by the organization such as Michele Samuelson, my honorary YCT-er and former roommate Catherine Helsley, and yours truly.

Great work Brianna. Here’s an excerpt of one of the conservative movement’s rising stars’ spotlight:

Conservatism isn’t so much a decision as an identity, says Brianna Becker, a junior at the University of Texas at Austin. She thinks Russell Kirk put it best: “Conservatism is no ideology: it is a state of mind, a type of character, a way of looking at the order of commonwealth. […] The conservative person is simply one who finds the permanent things more pleasing than Chaos and old night.”

Activism, on the other hand, is a conscious life decision and one Brianna made early and enthusiastically. She attended the National Student Leadership Council in Washington DC at age 15 and participated in Junior Statesmen of America throughout high school. These experiences afforded an opportunity to refine her arguments on a wide array of issues, from life to law; and she discovered a passion for articulating the conservative perspective in controversial public policy debates. “It was an indescribable, electrifying feeling,” Brianna said of her first debate, “to speak on things that in my heart I knew were right.”

Nice quote.

You can find out more about the the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute and Brianna Becker here:

By Laura Elizabeth Morales

Aug 4, 2008

Barack Obama, Europe, and the American Presidency

Upon returning, Senator Barack Obama justified his trip to Europe, saying one of the best ways to solve America's problems is to look to our friends abroad. Apparently, Obama is too young and/or inexperienced to know that historically America has been the rescuer of Europe, not the other way around.

For example, if you compare historical social upheavals, unemployment rates, tax rates, inflation rates, crime rates [though many countries do not track this and for a reason], standard of living, and the cost of gasoline, it seems as though our friends in Europe provide us with the perfect example of what we ought not to do.

Now, we are all aware that Barack Obama wants to appease the current world trends toward big government, oppressive taxation, and the impulse to negotiate with terrorists. We are aware that Barack Obama wants to appear in vogue among the moderately educated men of our age. As the latest McCain campaign advertisement shows, Obama seems to want to be a pop-star, like Britany Spears.

Pop-stars however, are known for sacraficing substance for appearance. Perhaps Obama perceives this, and understands that his support among moderates and pop-liberals in America will wane once the trendy issues of the day go out of fashion. Perhaps his commitment to European interest and world government over American national sovereignty is really just his attempt to generate a world political fashion wave in favor of his plan to “change” America. But, what change will Obama stand for if elected?

Frankly, Barack Obama does nothing more than ride the waves of pop-European and liberal American political culture, with reckless disregard for the consequences. I marvel how Democrats can even pretend to know who the real Barack Obama is, or what the politician will actually do, given his lack of experience, if elected. But then that is what the European influence on Democratic America really is all about, isn't it? Promise anything that will get you what you want now, and let someone else worry about the future; which is precisely why Social Security, Medicare, education, and a host of social ills are in the condition they are. Which brings us back to where we started; we have been following our friends in Europe, who have provided us with the perfect example of what we ought not to do. But who will bail us out when we begin to falter? What new world will come to our rescue?

Peyton Inge
The Young Conservatives of Texas

Rasmussen Poll: McCain Takes the Lead

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows the race for the White House is tied with Barack Obama and John McCain each attracting 44% of the vote. However, when "leaners" are included, it’s McCain 47% and Obama 46%...for the rest of the story follow the link: