Hand-picked and farm-fresh–
⇒Linked articles in bold purple
◆ Utter failure in Berlin: They blame it on incompetence but political correctness also played a major role, say Rachel Ehrenfeld and Stephen Bryen (American Center for Democracy)
German security agencies failed to arrest/deport Anis Amri, the Tunisian criminal, asylum seeker with known ties to radical Islamists groups, who was overheard volunteering as a suicide bomber. Apparently, their political correctness, enforced by government policies and decades-long pressure from rapidly growing Muslim communities yielded the Islamists’ desired results. Videos from ISIS instructing jihad-by tracks attacks, especially during the Christian holidays were ignored, as were last month’s U.S. warning. Incredibly, no efforts were made to even secure open Christmas markets. –Rachel Ehrenfeld and Stephen Bryen
◆ A serious inquiry into the relationship between radical Islam and the western nation-state. (Daniel Johnson in The New Criterion)
The present confrontation between Islam and the West is thus not, strictly speaking, a clash of civilizations, but the attempt to impose a theocratic religion upon a secular civilization, if necessary by force. This is asymmetrical warfare in the widest possible sense . . . . It is all the more acute because the secular West is reluctant to face the fact that it is faced by a holy war for which it is almost entirely unprepared. –Daniel Johnson in The New Criterion
◆ Not since Nixon has a President faced such a tough China challenge, says Evan A. Feigenbaum of the Carnegie Endowment (National Interest) The major change, he says, is that for four decades the US has assumed a “successful” China would be good for the U.S. Not anymore.
◆ An amazing behind-the-scenes story about Obama + Palestinians versus Israel + Egypt + Trump. The Times of Israel reports that Pres. Obama was about to change long-standing US policy toward Israel at the UN and was working with the Palestinians to do it. The Israelis, they say, blocked it by going to Trump, who worked with the Egyptians to block it.
Comment: This action by a president-elect is extremely rare, but then, so was Obama’s plan to flip US policy.
◆ The Iran Deal Pres. Obama negotiated is the lynchpin of his foreign policy. But, says Lee Smith, it is fundamental mainly because it reorients US alignment in the region, much closer to Iran and away from the Saudis and Israel. Trump will face hard decisions in dealing with Iran, but he will begin with a very different approach. Obama gave significant carrots to Iran, just to keep them negotiating. Trump thinks that’s the opposite of smart negotiations. (Tablet)
♥ Hat Tip for helpful suggestions:
◆ Ed Lasky for two stories, one on the Iran Deal, the other on the UN, Obama and Israel