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News and Analysis (3/4/15)

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Netanyahu's "argument was long on appeals to emotion – he pointed out Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel in the audience while calling Iran a 'dark and murderous regime' – and short on facts and reasonable alternatives" ...

... "I’ve never seen anything like that press conference by House Democrats… Full rejection of the propriety & substance of Netanyahu’s speech" -- Matt Lee of AP: "The hawkish Israeli Lobby’s massive strength in Congress depends for its power upon a myth—that it represents nearly all American Jews. Instead, today it depends upon others, especially Bible Belt Republican evangelicals—... [but] the idea of imminent Armageddon is wearing thin" ...
... "The [Israeli] lobby’s power is waning because ... Jews are no longer monolithic on Israel. Ideas of Jewish nationalism and separation are as discredited by the Israeli experiment as Communism was by the Soviet one. Young Jews are bridling ... and Netanyahu has fostered that, [G]od bless him": Last words form the beloved Jewish actor recall that as with the characters in Theodore Sturgeon's Star Trek episode "Let This Be your Last Battlefield", Palestinians and Israelis are "prepared to battle to the death to defend the memory of their people who died from the atrocities committed by the other": Why is it so hard for the press to admit that a beloved hero is a Muslim? A great athlete is now hailed as "a new kind of public intellectual" in an article whose single allusion to the beloved man's Muslim faith is an oblique reference to his observance of the Hajj pilgrimage as "visiting Mecca" (!): They call this secularism. Muslims "are estimated to be 60 percent of the 67,000 inmates in French prisons ... [but only] about 182 Muslim prison chaplains [compared to] about 562 Christian chaplains, a disparity largely attributed to the country’s Roman Catholic history and traditions":
"IS not only misreads the texts it cites, most clerics say, it also ignores Quranic verses and a long body of clerical scholarship requiring mercy, preservation of life and protection of innocents, and setting out rules of war — all of which are binding under Islamic Shariah law" ... ... yet, "Saudi Arabia embraces the same capital punishment techniques on convicted criminals as the Islamic terrorist group does on innocent hostages": "Human Rights Watch accuses high-ranking officials of allowing extrajudicial killings and brutal practices to flourish after fall of Taliban":
After past abuse of vaccination programs to gather intelligence for foreign assassins has terrified parents to the point that there were 306 new polio cases in Pakistan last year , the government resorts to incarceration to force parents to submit to the program:


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