Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Immortals: An Epic Tale of Good vs. Evil

More and more, Hollywood has alienated audiences with its messages of moral equivalence and its clichéd insistence on casting corporate capitalists, the CIA, and Christian hypocrites as the bad guys in thrillers, action movies, and even horror flicks. It seems that the only genres in which fed-up moviegoers can still find old-fashioned faceoffs of good versus evil are some comic book adaptations like Captain America: The First Avenger and sword-and-sandal epics like Gladiator and 300.

That timeless confrontation of light and darkness is the explicit theme of the recent stylish, spectacular 3-D action adventure Immortals, from the unique dreamscape imagination of Tarsem Singh. Singh is a former director of music videos, best-known for his video of the REM song “Losing My Religion” and the nightmarishly surreal Jennifer Lopez film The Cell.

Immortals is set more than a thousand years before Christ in a mythic Greece overseen by Zeus and the other gods from their perch on Mt. Olympus. On earth below, the power-mad butcher King Hyperion, played by Academy Award nominee Mickey Rourke​ (The Wrestler) leads his dark army on a rampage across the land in search of the Virgin Oracle (Freida Pinto of Oscar winner Slumdog Millionaire). He knows that her disturbing visions can guide him to the secret location of the Bow of Epirus. The Bow has the power to unleash the imprisoned Titans, rivals to the gods; once they are freed, war in heaven will ensue, the gods will be cut down, and King Hyperion will rule heaven and earth.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Dhimmitude in the UK: Muslims Freed after Race Attack

Imagine a black couple, minding their own business on a public street, suddenly set upon by four white, alcohol-fueled, women in their mid-20’s who proceed to viciously assault the black woman at length, all the while shouting profane racist insults. They kick the victim repeatedly in the head and body, pull out some of her hair, and leave her not only bruised and battered but so traumatized that, more than a year after the attack, she suffers from panic attacks and flashbacks, can’t keep her job, and is still undergoing counseling.

A clearcut incident of racist violence, right? An open-and-shut case in court, particularly if the entire attack was caught on video. But now imagine that the judge in this case lets the four perpetrators off the hook with only suspended sentences. His reasoning? He buys their attorney’s defense that they weren’t accustomed to alcohol, since they are Christian fundamentalists strictly forbidden to drink. He also accepts the outrageous argument that they may have felt that they were the victims of unreasonable force from their target’s partner, who tried to defend her from the attack.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hollywood’s 9/11 Blind Spot

A Los Angeles Times article recently began by noting that Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, the Tom Hanks post-9/11 film which opens on Christmas, is one of the very few Hollywood productions to try to come to grips with the impact of September 11, 2001 on our national psyche. The piece then went on to ponder the question, “Why so few Sept. 11 films?” and concluded that “the film industry has tiptoed around this national tragedy.” Indeed it has, but not for the reasons suggested in the Times article.

The Times points out that there have been plenty of documentaries about the day and its aftermath, but ten years after the terrorist attacks, only two major feature films — Oliver Stone's World Trade Center and Paul Greengrass' United 93 – have specifically dealt with the day in question, and “neither film was a roaring commercial success.”
“If anything,” the article continues, “the film industry has used the tragedy as an excuse to deluge TV and the multiplex with political thrillers focusing on terrorism,” citing Showtime's series Sleeper Cell and Homeland, the feature film The Kingdom, and the upcoming film by The Hurt Locker filmmakers about the killing of Osama bin Laden. An “excuse” to focus on terrorism? Sept. 11 was not some vague “tragedy”; it was a terrorist attack. The enemy pretty much did that focusing for us. In any case, none of those thrillers exactly set the box office or Nielsen ratings on fire either.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Obama: I’ve Done More for Israel’s Security than Any President

When you’re the most anti-Israel president in the history of America’s relationship with that staunch Middle Eastern ally, self-delusion would seem to be a useful defense mechanism. Speaking recently to prominent Jewish supporters at a New York City fundraiser, President Obama said:

I try not to pat myself too much on the back, but this administration has done more for the security of the state of Israel than any previous administration.

It’s difficult to decide which claim in this statement is more arrogant and laughable: that Obama’s accomplishments are so laudable and numerous that he must refrain from patting himself on the back too much, or that his administration has been the most supportive of Israel’s security. As argued in the Horowitz Freedom Center’s new video, “Obama: The Anti-Israel President,” the reality is that no administration has done less to secure Israel from Muslim aggression.
(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Arab Spring - Muslim Winter

Check out this transcript of the panel discussion I moderated at the David Horowitz Freedom Center's Restoration Weekend in Palm Beach in mid-November. It featured (from far right to left) Michael Totten, Daniel Pipes, Andrew C. McCarthy, and Douglas Murray:

My name is Mark Tapson, I'm honored to be a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center. And I’m also honored to introduce this panel of distinguished and ridiculously accomplished speakers. You know when you hear speakers described as people who need no introduction? These are those people. But to justify myself being up here, I’m going to say a few quick words about them anyway, and we can get down to business.

Our too-brief time together is going to go like this. I’m going to get the ball rolling by throwing out a very broad question for each of the speakers to expound upon in turn, for which they will each have about seven minutes. Then we will take questions from the audience and have a lot of lively interaction that way.

When we get to the questions, please limit yourself to one question — and a question, as opposed to comments or remarks. And try to direct your question toward one speaker, although I will probably allow the other speakers to jump in as well and offer their opinions.

We have a complex, fascinating, critical topic today — Arab Spring, Muslim Winter. “Arab Spring” is a phrase that is familiar to everybody this year. It’s been so prominent in the news media throughout 2011 that I fully expect “Arab Spring” to be Time Magazine’s Person of the Year.


The mainstream media latched onto this phrase in their giddy excitement about what they saw as a flowering of freedom-loving democratic movements throughout the Arab world, for which they were eager to credit Obama’s famed Cairo speech as partial inspiration. Of course, as we’ve seen it unfold throughout the year with Islamic fundamentalists establishing political dominance, the Arab Spring is now starting to look more like “Springtime for Hitler.”


Only without the funny show tunes.

So, gentlemen of the panel — and I’ll introduce them momentarily here — gentlemen of the panel, here’s my unmanageably broad — actually, let me introduce them now, so that they don’t forget what the question is.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Why We Should Call Ourselves Christians

It is a commonplace that one of the principal reasons for the much-discussed civilizational decline of the West is the loss of religious faith, at least in Europe, where multiculturalism and secularism have been elevated to religious status. (This is not to say that America’s religious character also isn’t under assault in ways large and small; witness, for example, President Obama’s absolute omission of any reference to God in last week’s Thanksgiving address, in which the once-and-future community organizer referred to the holiday as a mere “celebration of community”).

On his recent trip to Germany, Pope Benedict XVI lamented the increasing indifference toward religion in that country. But of course he meant indifference toward Christianity, not all religion, because he recognizes that Islam is thriving in Europe. In meetings with Muslim leaders, he praised the “great importance” Muslims placed on religion: “At times, this is thought-provoking in a society that tends to marginalize religion or at most to assign it a place among the individual's personal choices.”

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Israel: Lion or Lamb?

As military analyst Yaakov Katz wrote recently in The Jerusalem Post, “Something has changed in Israel.” Once, it was renowned for daring military operations like the 1972 capture of five Syrian intelligence officers, the 1976 raid on the hijacked aircraft at Entebbe Airport in Uganda, and even as recently as 2007, the airstrike on a Syrian nuclear reactor. Today – following the Gilad Schalit swap last month for more than 1,000 convicted Palestinian terrorists – it is now perceived by many as a country that caves to the arrogant demands of its enemies.

With Iran on the verge of acquiring the nuclear capability it needs to, as Ahmadinejad is fond of saying, “wipe Israel from the map,” many wonder if Israel is considering a possible preemptive military strike. But is Israel the country it once was? These days it seems it can barely push back against the Obama administration’s pressure to negotiate with Hamas and return to indefensible borders. Does an Israel that seemingly surrendered to the demands of terrorists have what it takes to neutralize the looming threat of a nuclear-weaponized Iran?

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Carlos the Jackal and the Unholy Alliance

The brutal and charismatic terrorist once known all over the world as Carlos the Jackal, already serving a life sentence pronounced in 1997 in France for the murder of two policemen and an informant in 1975, went on trial again this week in France – this time for terrorism charges, for which he faces another life sentence.

Describing himself to the court as “a professional revolutionary,” the 62-year-old Carlos launched into diatribes against “racist” Israel and “Zionist exploiters,” drawing applause from supporters in the packed courthouse, to whom he blew kisses. He denied involvement in the crimes in question, from 1982-3 in France; but in an interview the day before, he boasted that the operations he plotted in his career resulted in 2000 deaths. As for the innocent victims of his Marxist-inspired class war, Carlos justified their murders this way: “There were very few. I calculated that they were fewer than 10 percent. So out of 1,500 to 2,000 killed, there were not more than 200 civilian victims.” One of his defense attorneys asked the court instead to spare a thought for “victims” of Western-backed wars in Libya and Afghanistan.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Unhappy Anniversary

With all the “Occupy movement” mayhem dominating the news last week, along with the media salivation over sexual improprieties ascribed to Herman Cain and Justin Beiber, and the continued fallout from Kim Kardashian’s divorce announcement diverting media attention from the hell being unleashed in the name of Islam in Nigeria, three grim anniversaries in the clash of Islam and the West passed last week with little-to-no public fanfare.

On October 31 a year ago, five members of al Qaeda scaled the walls of Baghdad’s Our Lady of Salvation Cathedral and opened fire on the congregation, leaving 42 martyred and wounding more then 100 in the massacre. The dead included three children, two priests and a pregnant woman. Survivors later said that the attackers told them they were “infidels” and “had to be killed.” The terrorists blew themselves up, but others who planned the attacks were later arrested.

Asked why they did it, their response was curiously devoid of the political grievances and poverty so often assumed to be the motivations for terrorism in the name of Islam. “You (Christians) are all ‘kafara,’” came the answer. “That is, ‘infidels,’ and we (Muslims) cannot coexist with you.” Apparently the multitude of “Coexist” bumper stickers adorning Priuses everywhere aren’t making the desired impression on al Qaeda militants.

(Read the rest here at FrontPage Mag)

Monday, November 7, 2011

How the West was Undone

AMC’s new series Hell on Wheels, a western about the making of the transcontinental railroad, began Sunday night. But it’s unlikely to be a celebration of Manifest Destiny, a concept the filmmakers and cast apparently view with horror. Check out this oddly downbeat promo video, in which they fall all over themselves condemning the railroad for bringing civilization westward:

The series is an “anti-western,” according to its executive producer, Joe Gayton. “Hell on Wheels is dragging the urban blight in the industry of the East across the West, and changing it forever. It’s kind of the beginning of the end of the West as they knew it.” Another executive producer, David von Ancken, indicates the landscape behind him and describes the show as “the battle of man, scarring nature, versus this, the beauty of nature.” It’s “the story of the train cutting through nineteenth-century America and bringing ‘civilization.’” He actually gestures the air quotes around “civilization,” to make sure you know he takes the politically correct and fashionably ironic view of the concept.

(Read the rest here at PJ Lifestyle)

A Satire Draws Fire

Here we go again. Charlie Hebdo, a humor magazine in Paris which had produced a spoof issue “guest edited” by, as The New York Times and other media outlets refer to him, the “Prophet Mohammed,” was firebombed early Wednesday just as the special edition was on its way to the newsstands. Hackers had also disrupted its website with a message in English and Turkish cursing the magazine: “You keep abusing Islam's almighty Prophet with disgusting and disgraceful cartoons using excuses of freedom of speech. Be God's curse upon you!”

The magazine had announced the special issue in satirical salute to the “Arab Spring” victory of an Islamist party in Tunisian elections: Charlie Hebdo has asked Mohammed to be the special editor-in-chief of its next issue,” the magazine said in a statement. “The prophet of Islam didn't have to be asked twice and we thank him for it.” It renamed itself Charia Hebdo, a pun on the word “shariah,” for the occasion, and featured an editorial by Mohammed entitled “Halal Aperitif” and a women's supplement called “Madam Sharia.” On the cover was a cartoon of Mohammed announcing, “100 lashes if you don’t die of laughter.”

Friday, November 4, 2011

Mark at Restoration Weekend

I'm excited and honored to be moderating a panel on the "Arab Spring / Muslim Winter" at the David Horowitz Freedom Center's "Restoration Weekend" in Palm Beach. The panel will feature fascinating writers Andrew McCarthy (The Grand Jihad), Daniel Pipes (Militant Islam Reaches America), Michael Totten (The Road to Fatima Gate: The Beirut Spring, the Rise of Hezbollah, and the Iranian War Against Israel), and Lee Smith (The Strong Horse: Power, Politics, and the Clash of Arab Civilizations). There will no doubt be a video of the discussion available sometime afterward on the Freedom Center website,

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Border Insecurity: The War in Texas

When presidential candidates casually toss out a talking point about “the need to secure our border,” that bland phrase doesn’t even remotely convey the catastrophic reality of life along the Rio Grande. Our rhetoric needs to catch up.

The Texas Department of Agriculture released a fascinating but alarming report late last month entitled Texas Border Security: A Strategic Military Assessment. It confirms what rural Texan farmers and ranchers already know: that our fight against narco-terrorism has taken on “the classic trappings of a real war” and that “all of Central and South America have become an interconnected source of violence and terrorism,” with Texas as “operational ground zero.”

The fact that the Department of Agriculture is now conducting strategic military assessments instead of crop reports is in itself an eye-opening indication of how serious the war being waged at our southern border has become. Compiled by 4-star General Barry McCaffrey, former Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy and former Commander of all U.S. troops in Central and South America, and Major-General Robert Scales, former Commandant of the U.S. Army War College, the report offers “sobering evidence of cartel criminals gaining ground on Texas soil.”

Monday, October 31, 2011

Holy Terror: Frank Miller’s “Fixer” Takes on Jihad

In an interview a month ago on FrontPage, cartoonist and FrontPage contributing artist Bosch Fawstin observed that “comics have been as truthless and as gutless as any corner of pop culture about Islam and Jihad since 9/11.” After dismissing several comic books that promoted appeasement toward the threat of global jihad, Fawstin, whose own work fearlessly confronts that threat, concluded with a contrasting example:

And finally, there’s Frank Miller’s Holy Terror, originally a Batman vs. al Qaeda story, which appears to take on the enemy in a more direct way than we’ve seen in comics so far, outside of my own work. I’m curious to see what kind of effect Miller’s book will have, if it will inspire more work that takes on this enemy.

Released two weeks after that interview, Miller’s 120-page graphic novel Holy Terror so far seems to have prompted more indignation than inspiration. The English-language website The National, for example, based in the United Arab Emirates, reports that some critics are denouncing the book as “Islamophobic” – and then proceeds to provide those critics with a forum in which to slam Holy Terror unchallenged by an opposing point of view.

Mark on The Jamie Glazov Show

I'm honored to be a guest w/Nonie Darwish & Andrew Klavan on the first Jamie Glazov Show. Jamie is the editor of FrontPage Mag, and we'll be chatting about current events. Check it out Tuesday night, November 1 from 8-9 Pacific time...

Update: Looks like previously scheduled guest Robert Spencer is back on for tonight's show, so I don't need to fill in. I'll appear on the show another time. Meanwhile, check out tonight's debut of Jamie's show...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bomb, James Bomb

This could be very bad news for Bond fans. Word is that the tentatively titled Skyfall, the latest James Bond film, will be taking a disappointing direction with auteur director Sam Mendes (American Beauty) at the helm.

Fans like myself have already endured a serious delay of the film’s release due to MGM’s precarious financial position. Then news of the ingenious casting of Bond antagonists Ralph Fiennes and Javier Bardem, who have played two of the most chilling villains in recent years (in Red Dragon and No Country for Old Men, respectively), whetted our appetites even further.

But now rumors are that Mendes is axing most of the grand action sequences which are of course a staple of the long-lived movie franchise, and instead is aiming for Oscar-worthy, “characterful performances” and the kind of “emotional depth” which star Daniel Craig has longed to bring to the iconic role.

Have audiences worldwide been clamoring for this? For “characterful,” “emotional depth”? Except for the Roger Moore films, which I boycotted while mourning Sean Connery’s Bond retirement, I’ve been a rabid fan since Dr. No, and I think I speak for the others when I say we don’t care a whit for Oscar legitimacy. What Bond fans want, and what separates the franchise from the moodier Bourne competition snapping at its heels, is breathtaking, cartoonish fun. If Mendes et al don’t grasp this, or don’t care, then I predict that not only will this be a box office bomb (by Bond standards), but Oscar gold will elude them as well.

(This article originally appeared at PJ Lifestyle here, 10/27/11)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Me and the only politician I can get excited about...

Today at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. Allen West is not only presidential material, he makes ALL the other GOP candidates this election pale by comparison. It's depressing to have to settle for anyone less than Col. West...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

When in Dubai: The Kardashians Shop for Burqas

In Dubai last week to open a milkshake franchise, promote her signature fragrance, and pursue other opportunities to expand her business empire, uber-celebrity Kim Kardashian and mother Kris Jenner stopped by the Dubai Mall to shop for the latest Middle Eastern fashions – including matching burqas.
“That's me!” Kardashian later squealed on Twitter beneath a photo of herself with her famous face completely obscured except for a slit for the eyes (this is actually a niqab, not a burqa, which covers everything, but burqa is becoming the popular catchall word to describe the covering in general). Considering that Kardashian’s fame is entirely the result of the relentless marketing of her curvy sexuality, beginning with a sex tape, a burqa – the purpose of which is to obliterate female sexuality and to reduce a woman’s identity to a rumpled, repellent blob – is a curious fashion choice.
And a disappointing one. One of the most famous women in the world and a style icon for countless millions of fans, Kim Kardashian may have just given the burqa her considerably influential fashion imprimatur.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Showtime's "Homeland": War Hero or Terrorist?

It’s been almost a year and a half since the long-running Fox TV series 24 ended. The counterterrorism action show featured Kiefer Sutherland as the self-sacrificing super-patriot Jack Bauer, who took down terrorists by any means necessary, including torture – a tactic which created no end of controversy and earned the show scorn from the Left as “right-wing porn.” Now creative alumni from 24 have created a new show with an admittedly compelling but decidedly more ambiguous take on what used to be called the “war on terror” (before the Obama administration changed it to “Overseas Contingency Operation” and then dropped a name for it altogether).

Homeland, which premiered two Sundays ago on Showtime, is based on Prisoners of War, an Israeli TV series about the reintegration of two soldiers held prisoner by the Syrians. It centers on a Marine named Brody (actor Damian Lewis) missing and presumed dead in Iraq since 2003, who is discovered alive and rescued during a CIA-driven operation. Brody is welcomed home to suburban Washington D.C. to a lot of CIA self-congratulation and media fanfare – “a poster boy for the war,” as skeptical counterterrorism analyst Carrie (actress Claire Danes) calls him. Unknown to her superiors, Carrie received a tip from a high-level informant that an American prisoner of war has been "turned" traitor; she suspects it is Brody, and that he is a sleeper agent involved in an imminent terrorist attack. (Warning: possible SPOILERS ahead)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Hollywood Propaganda

The entertainment trade magazine The Hollywood Reporter commissioned a poll of 1,000 registered voters to gauge the moviegoing tendencies of Democrats versus Republicans. According to results that will shock absolutely no one, political allegiances have shifted entertainment viewing habits, and conservatives are increasingly fed up with Hollywood. Why? “Typically, when you see a movie, it will reflect a Democrat's values,” says pollster Jon Penn. “Republicans aren't getting the films they want.”

This comes as no surprise to the center-right “flyover audiences” between the coasts, who over the years have grown to resent Hollywood’s increasingly left-leaning fare to the degree that many have simply given up on Hollywood. Weary of movies and TV shows that don’t reflect their values – like director James Cameron’s Avatar, which pushed a radical environmentalist agenda and denigrated the U.S. military in the process, or Glee, which fellow FrontPage Mag contributor Ben Shapiro calls” the most subversive show in the history of television” – many conservatives are reluctant to give Hollywood a single hard-earned dime.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Shock Warning: An Interview with Michael Walsh

“Serious” novels about 9/11 and Islamic terrorism tend to suffer from navel-gazing guilt and moral equivalence. Hollywood too often blames America, the CIA, and capitalism for Islamic rage. The thriller novel seems to be the last fictional arena in which writers like Brad Thor, Daniel Silva, Vince Flynn, and now Michael Walsh are allowed to pit good guys against politically incorrect, yet real-world, adversaries like (among others) Muslim militants.

Walsh is a novelist, music critic, screenwriter, and media critic. Until recently he was also the editor of Andrew Breitbart’s A former American Book Award winner for his novel And All the Saints, Walsh recently undertook a spy thriller series featuring an NSA super-agent code-named Devlin, who takes on America’s enemies foreign and domestic. The series began with 2009’s Hostile Intent, followed by Early Warning last year, and now the just-released Shock Warning, which takes Devlin from a devastating biological attack in California to an apocalyptic confrontation in Iran. Two more books in the bestselling series are still slated to appear.

As if all that doesn’t keep him busy enough, Walsh writes political commentary in a twice-weekly column for the New York Post and also for the National Review under both his own name and the alter ego David Kahane. Kahane’s outstanding Rules for Radical Conservatives: Beating the Left at its Own Game to Take Back America came out last year (FrontPage editor Jamie Glazov interviewed Walsh about it here). Somehow I managed to catch up with Walsh for a few questions in a brief interim when he wasn’t writing.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Journalism and Jihad

Muslim-American advocacy groups with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), are on a mission to combat what they claim is the Western media’s habitually negative reporting on Islam. After all, it’s difficult to advance the Brotherhood’s agenda of “eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within” when the media keep reporting on a steady stream of terror plots, honor killings, and encroaching shariah on American soil. But if journalists take to heart the message of an online course from The Poynter News University, then their “skewed” perspective won’t be a problem anymore.

Covering Islam in America” is a free, self-directed course offered by the Poynter Institute,* which describes itself as “a school dedicated to teaching and inspiring journalists and media leaders.” It purports to give journalists a basic education in how “to humanize, analyze and put news about Islam and Muslim communities into context.” Check out the course and you will discover that what putting such news “in context” means is finding ways to deflect negative attention from jihad and shariah, and instead to give credence to Muslim “grievances” against the West, cast suspicion on politicians who speak out against shariah, and spotlight a rightwing network of “bigots” as the real threat.

Monday, October 3, 2011

No Celebrity Outrage for Iranian Pastor Nadarkhani

When it comes to publicly protesting the sentences of death row inmates, celebrity outrage for a convicted cop-killer is off the charts, but a Christian pastor in Iran about to die for his beliefs doesn’t even rate a “tweet.”

Last month Troy Davis, convicted of the 1989 murder of Georgia officer Mark MacPhail, the married father of two, was executed for his crimes despite a wave of urgent protests on the part of celebrities proclaiming his innocence and horrified by his imminent execution. Kim Kardashian, P. Diddy, Russell Simmons, and Alec Baldwin were among the many stars who felt that the evidence of his guilt was insufficient to overcome reasonable doubt (Ann Coulter was not among the doubtful – in her FrontPage Mag article, she detailed the overwhelming evidence condemning Davis and described him as “the media’s new baby seal.”).

The celebs used their substantial platforms like the social media network Twitter to raise awareness about the case and demand clemency. “If Troy Davis is executed in Georgia it will be a crime,” “tweeted” novelist Salman Rushdie, himself still living under a death fatwa for his book The Satanic Verses, denounced as blasphemous by Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini the same year as MacPhail’s murder (contrary to a common assumption, the fatwa has never been rescinded; Iranian authorities have said merely that they have no intention of carrying out Rushdie’s sentence).

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Jordan is Palestine: Arieh Eldad’s Two-State Solution

With a petition for Palestinian statehood presented before the United Nations last week, the issue of the disputed right to the land of Israel seems to many to be on the verge of an historic, if unsatisfying and controversial, resolution. But Dr. Arieh Eldad, a Member of Knesset and chairman of the Jewish nationalist Hatikva party, insists that the root of the issue is not territorial, and thus any peace plan based on the concept of dividing the land is destined for failure.

In his pamphlet titled simply Jordan is Palestine,” Eldad writes

Dividing the land of Israel west of the Jordan into two states – Israel and a Palestinian state – has become the only political plan accepted for international and domestic (Israeli) discourse. This, despite dozens of failures in trying to implement it during the past ninety years. Every failed attempt has been accompanied by bloody conflict and/or war.

Recently Eldad – also chief medical officer and senior commander of the Israel Defense Forces Medical Corps and a Brigadier-General in the IDF (Reserves) – spoke at Temple Ner Maarav in Encino, northwest of Los Angeles, to clarify the truth and present his alternative plan. Also entitled Jordan is Palestine,” his presentation put forth what he calls the “simple truth” that the Jews, and not the Arabs, have an historic right to the land of Israel. “I’m all for ending the occupation,” he said. “We must end the occupation. Of course, I’m referring to the Muslim occupation of the land of Israel, starting in the seventh century.”

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Never Submit: Bosch Fawstin’s Uncompromising Vision

These are interesting days for the intersection of comics and the Clash of Civilizations. The real-life adventures of a former al-Qaida militant have become a popular comic book in Indonesia – the most populous Muslim nation in the world – chronicling his transformation from enemy to ally in the fight against terrorism. DC Comics, the home of Batman, sent him to Paris and replaced sidekick Robin with a French Algerian Muslim known as Nightrunner. “The 99,” a comic book creation out of the Middle East featuring 99 superheroes, each representing a different aspect of Islamic culture, has received the blessing of President Obama and is hooking up with other DC comic heroes as well as becoming an animated TV series.

And then there’s Pigman, the jihadists’ nemesis and the protagonist of Bosch Fawstin’s graphic novel The Infidel, a story of Muslim twin brothers whose lives veer in polar opposite directions in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. The Infidel echoes Fawstin’s own journey from his Albanian Muslim beginnings, to apostate and Ayn Rand devotee.

Fawstin is a cartoonist who scored an Eisner Award nomination – the comics industry equivalent of an Oscar nod – for his debut graphic novel, Table For One. He’s also a FrontPage contributing artist and the author/illustrator of ProPIGanda: Drawing the Line Against Jihad, a collection of images and essays that serve as a companion piece to The Infidel.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Oliver Stone's Filmmaker Son Supports a Nuclear Iran

Sean Stone, son of famous director Oliver and a budding filmmaker himself, recently arrived at the Toronto Film Festival from Tehran, where he was launching a production company to make movies based in Iranian history and culture. Well-known for such films as Platoon, Wall Street, Natural Born Killers, and World Trade Center, Sean’s father is also notorious for befriending such standard bearers of anti-Americanism and anti-capitalism as Cuba’s Fidel Castro and Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez. In an exclusive interview with the entertainment industry website The Wrap, Sean Stone proved that the nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Carrying on his father’s legacy of excusing totalitarians, Stone the Younger defended the Iranian President, apocalyptic madman Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and supported Iran’s right to arm itself with the ultimate weapon. “Israel has nuclear weapons, Iran has the right to them,” he pointed out. “Every nation has the right to self determination for defense.” Defense? Against threats from Israel? Sean has it exactly backwards. The theocratic regime in Iran, the world’s foremost state sponsor of international terrorism, has been racing to acquire the nuclear weapons that will dangerously alter the balance of power in the Middle East and put Iran in a position to wipe Israel from the map, as Ahmadinejad has pledged to do so many times.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

"Smear, Inc." - Silencing the Critics of Islamic Supremacism

The recently released report “Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America,” from the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress (CAP), purports to expose a sinister network of American “Islamophobes” funded by a “flood of cash” who manufacture conspiracy theories about Islam, spread hate and bigotry against all Muslim-Americans, and inspire violence toward them, all for financial and political gain. But in fact, the very concept of Islamophobia is manufactured propaganda used by the subversive Muslim Brotherhood and their leftist support network to demonize and silence critics of Islamic fundamentalism.

The authors of “Fear, Inc.” are counting on its impressive length (138 pages), cascades of footnotes, a few three-color graphics, and professionally glossy cover to convince readers that it is thoroughly sourced, unbiased and undeniable proof of their thesis. Stephen Walt at Foreign Policy, to name one, seems to have been convinced, calling it “a remarkable piece of investigative work” and then parroting its ludicrous accusation that, instead of the threat of radical Islam, “what we are really facing is a well-funded right-wing collaboration to scare the American people with a bogeyman of their own creation.” A bogeyman of their own creation? It takes an impressive degree of ideological self-delusion to convince oneself that Islamic extremism is a mere chimera of the right.

(Read the rest at FrontPage Mag here)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A Point in Time: An Interview with David Horowitz

Be not troubled, for all things are according to nature and in a little while you will be no one and nowhere. – Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

People usually associate David Horowitz, former radical leftist and founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, with the intellectual pugilism that has made him the nemesis of the Left, in books such as Indoctrination U: The Left’s War Against Academic Freedom and Unholy Alliance: Radical Islam and the American Left. But his new book A Point In Time caps an unofficial trilogy of lyrical meditations that began with The End of Time, then progressed through A Cracking of the Heart. In his latest, he uses the works of Marcus Aurelius and Fyodor Dostoevsky as starting points for his own intimate reflections on meaning and mortality.

Mark Tapson: How does this new book relate to your previous work?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Kiloton Threat: An Interview with General William “Jerry” Boykin

Lt. General (retired) William G. "Jerry" Boykin spent thirty-six years in the U.S. Army, many of them as an original member of Delta Force, the world’s premier Special Operations unit. His career plays out like a series of Tom Clancy thrillers: he helped capture Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega, hunted the notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar, and has served in Vietnam, Iran, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan, in addition to a stint with the CIA, and became the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence under President George W. Bush.

Along the way, Boykin, now an ordained minister, courted controversy with comments that seemed to couch the War on Terror in religious terms. This drew fire from leftist figures such as Sidney Blumenthal, John Kerry, and Seymour Hersh, as well as from the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the self-proclaimed advocacy group linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.

The author of the autobiographical Never Surrender: A Soldier's Journey to the Crossroads of Faith and Freedom and the thriller Danger Close has a new novel, Kiloton Threat. Both thrillers feature Special Forces officer Blake Kershaw combating Muslim extremism.