Tag Archives: Syria

Obama administration sent $400 million cash ransom to Iran for hostage release

Is Barack Obama focused on protecting the American people?
Is Barack Obama focused on protecting the American people and our allies?

Why do civilized countries have a policy of not paying ransom to terrorists for hostages? Because if you pay them once, then it emboldens them to kidnap again and again. Anyone who knows anything about national security and foreign policy knows this: we do not negotiate with terrorists.

But what happens if you elect a drugged-up community organizer who never released his college grades to be the first “affirmative action President”?

The Wall Street Journal explains:

The Obama administration secretly organized an airlift of $400 million worth of cash to Iran that coincided with the January release of four Americans detained in Tehran, according to U.S. and European officials and congressional staff briefed on the operation afterward.

Wooden pallets stacked with euros, Swiss francs and other currencies were flown into Iran on an unmarked cargo plane, according to these officials. The U.S. procured the money from the central banks of the Netherlands and Switzerland, they said.

[…]“With the nuclear deal done, prisoners released, the time was right to resolve this dispute as well,” President Barack Obama said at the White House on Jan. 17—without disclosing the $400 million cash payment.

[…]Iranian press reports have quoted senior Iranian defense officials describing the cash as a ransom payment. The Iranian foreign ministry didn’t respond to a request for comment.

[…]Since the cash shipment, the intelligence arm of the Revolutionary Guard has arrested two more Iranian-Americans. Tehran has also detained dual-nationals from France, Canada and the U.K. in recent months.

[…]The Obama administration has refused to disclose how it paid any of the $1.7 billion, despite congressional queries, outside of saying that it wasn’t paid in dollars. Lawmakers have expressed concern that the cash would be used by Iran to fund regional allies, including the Assad regime in Syria and the Lebanese militia Hezbollah, which the U.S. designates as a terrorist organization.

[…]Iran has acknowledged providing both financial and military aid to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and deploying Iranian soldiers there.

Of course. Because appeasement of tyrants emboldens tyrants to be more aggressive. Anyone with the basic moral sense of a functioning adult knows this.

Republicans called the entire $1.7 billion Iran deal a ransom for hostages:

Sen. Tom Cotton, a Republican from Arkansas and a fierce foe of the Iran nuclear deal, accused President Barack Obama of paying “a $1.7 billion ransom to the ayatollahs for U.S. hostages.”

“This break with longstanding U.S. policy put a price on the head of Americans, and has led Iran to continue its illegal seizures” of Americans, he said.

[…]Members of Congress are seeking to pass legislation preventing the Obama administration from making any further cash payments to Iran. One of the bills requires for the White House to make public the details of its $1.7 billion transfer to Iran.

“President Obama’s…payment to Iran in January, which we now know will fund Iran’s military expansion, is an appalling example of executive branch governance,” said Sen.James Lankford (R., Okla.), who co-wrote the bill. “Subsidizing Iran’s military is perhaps the worst use of taxpayer dollars ever by an American president.”

Republicans are trying to get answers, but the Democrats are hiding everything – just like they did with the gun-running to Mexican drug cartels, the unsecure Hillary e-mail server, the Benghazi cover-up, the IRS persecution of conservatives, and so on.

The Washington Free Beacon explains:

“It has been seven months since President Obama announced that he was giving the Islamic Republic of Iran almost $2 billion,” Rep. Mike Pompeo (R., Kan.), a member of the House Intelligence Committee, told the Free Beacon on Wednesday.  “And we are just now finding out damning details about how $400 million, which is less than half of the total, was sent to Iran using foreign aircraft and foreign currencies.”

Pompeo led several unsuccessful inquiries into the cash payout. He said the administration has been stonewalling efforts to obtain a full readout of the exchange in both classified and unclassified settings since January.

[…]“That is far too long of a timeline, especially as it is in the face of the Obama administration totally stonewalling congressional inquiries into this matter since January,” Pompeo said.

None of this is surprising, given Obama’s other anti-American actions. We’ve already seen Obama release dozens of known Islamic terrorists who were captured on the battlefield – many of whom returned to battlefield to kill more Americans and innocent civilians.

Obama spokesman admits that the money is being given to a nation that supports terrorists:

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said during Wednesday’s press briefing it is possible the $400 million that the Obama administration airlifted to Iran could have been spent on funding terrorism.

“The president was quite forward-leaning in advance of the nuclear deal even being completed in acknowledging that we know that Iran supports terrorism,” Earnest said. “We know that Iran supports Hezbollah and the Assad regime, and it is certainly possible that some of the money that Iran has is being used for those purposes, too.”

What does Obama care? It’s not his money, it’s your money. Pass the selfie stick and the golf clubs.

Marco Rubio: skipped NDAA votes, supported Libya intervention, weak on border security

Marco Rubio with his allies: Democrat Chuck Schumer and RINO John McCain
Marco Rubio with his allies: Democrat Chuck Schumer and RINO John McCain

Former Georgia Congressman has seen something in Marco Rubio’s record that causes him concern, and he’s written about it over at the grassroots conservative web site Red State.

There are three problems:

  • Rubio has been absent for National Defense Authorization Act votes
  • Rubio was supportive of Hillary Clinton’s failed intervention in Libya
  • Rubio is not serious about border security and other immigration-related risks

He says:

On the campaign trail, Senator Marco Rubio has been pushing a media narrative that he is the most “serious” foreign policy candidate. It’s an odd position since he missed all but one of the 19 votes connected to the National Defense Authorization Act last year! But far more damaging than his missed votes is his inability to learn from our past national security mistakes. Whether it’s Libya, border security, or major security gaps in our visa and refugee programs, when he has voted, it’s often on the side of misplaced liberal ideals and illegal immigrants instead of America’s safety.

One disturbing example is Rubio’s support for the Obama-Clinton intervention in Libya in 2011. As a member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, I traveled to Sigonella Navy base to meet with our military commanders who were conducting our military intervention. Our briefings were shocking. It was clear we had no end game or definition of success. That is to say the decisions and confused strategy was the product of Obama’s misunderstanding of the middle east. Yet in a speech at the Brookings Institution in 2012, after complaining that Republicans were so bad on foreign policy that he was forced to work on his policies with Democrats, Senator Rubio said the Libya regime change “turned out fine.”  Senator Rubio had been in the Senate for two years at the time, and should have had some understanding of the conditions on the ground. In fact, our people were already being attacked in the region. In a month, Ambassador Chris Stevens would be pleading with Secretary Clinton for more security.  And in less than five months, Ambassador Stevens and three other Americans would stop complaining – because they were killed in the utter disaster that was the radical Islamic terrorist attack on Benghazi.

I blogged before about how the failed Libya intervention has resulted in an Islamic State caliphate starting up in Libya, not to mention much violence and atrocities. New Clinton e-mails confirm that this was Hillary Clinton’s war, and Marco Rubio sided with Hillary.


Even today, Senator Rubio refuses to learn the lesson of Libya.  For most Americans, the situation in Iraq and Syria—as Benghazi tragically showed us—is proof that the enemies of our enemies are not necessarily our friends. The result of not properly scrutinizing such movements is often more chaos, and the death toll, like our enemies, often multiplies. Just ask the ISIS brigades rolling around in our tanks and Humvees—and read about their victims.

That Marco Rubio still thinks we should fight both Bashir al Assad and ISIS, while supporting some nebulous factions that he’s confident will never turn on us but will turn Syria into a democratic utopia, demonstrates the depth of his naiveté when it comes to military adventurism.

And while fighting both sides of a civil war is bad enough, these mistakes are doubly harmful when we don’t carefully watch who is coming into our own country.

Too often, immigration is considered a solely domestic issue. But border security is the first and necessary step to securing our nation against the jihadists who are not content to kill each other abroad—they want to kill Americans here at home. And when politicians insist on intervening around the world while voting to grant amnesty, expand refugee admittance – all the while not securing the border — we get the worst of both worlds: thousands of people coming to America from war-torn countries, and no system to tell the innocent from the terrorists. This why a major campaign issue has become the Rubio-Schumer Gang of 8 amnesty bill which prioritizes illegals over the safety of Americans.  This isn’t a new problem – we need look no further than the evil perpetrators of 9/11. The lesson should have been learned more than a decade ago.

Even as Europe reaped the bloody consequences of a borderless welcome-mat policy that led to the Paris atrocity, Sen. Rubio refused to stop the flood of un-vetted Syrian refugees. When Senators like Ted Cruz and Rand Paul called to stop waving in thousands from Syria and other countries with murderous jihadist movements, Rubio did not join them.

There’s an astonishing article up at Breitbart News which talks about how Rubio misled the law enforcement leaders from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) regarding his amnesty bill.


BNN: What happened in the meeting? Did Sen. Rubio make any promises to you? Did he keep them?

CRANE: To start, even though I had requested to bring someone with me, Sen. Rubio denied the request and demanded that I come alone, which I still believe was highly peculiar and inappropriate.

He, of course, had what appeared to be his entire staff in his office with me. Most of his staff stood behind me as there was no place for them to sit. I raised a series of strong concerns with the bill, and as I raised each issue, Sen. Rubio would look to his staff and ask if that was what the bill said. Each time his staff agreed with my interpretation, and Sen. Rubio would shake his head in disbelief and indicate the bill had to be changed.

Sen. Rubio talked very specifically and very directly to me and his staff saying that the changes I suggested had to be made and specifically said that other Gang of Eight members wouldn’t be happy, but “Oh well.” Obviously the changes I suggested were all serious enforcement related issues, such as establishing a biometric entry-exit system, and cracking down on sex offenders, gang members, violent criminals and other criminal aliens.

When I walked out of his office that night I definitely thought the bill would undergo significant changes, but of course absolutely no changes were made.

BNN: Almost immediately after you met with Sen. Rubio, he introduced bill. Did it include any of the changes you asked for?

CRANE: Not one of the changes we suggested was made to the bill before Sen. Rubio introduced it.

All of his strong statements during our meeting about making the changes we suggested were apparently all just a dodge to get rid of me. It quickly became obvious why he didn’t permit me to take anyone with me to the meeting— he didn’t want any witnesses.

So, there are two problems with Marco Rubio that surface here. First, he is young, and he has romantic notions about the use of force. He supported Libya and it failed. He thinks it succeeded, but actually it failed. Second, he is easily influenced by peer approval to get caught up in liberal priorities. We’ve seen that with his support for amnesty, his support for Libya, his support for removing due process rights for students accused with little or no evidence on campus (think University of Virginia hoax), and so on. He is just not mature enough to be President, and his lack of maturity could really hurt us.

Here’s the full list of Rubio errors:

Hillary Clinton and Marco Rubio’s intervention in Libya created an ISIS caliphate

Marco Rubio with his allies: Democrat Churck Schumer and RINO John McCain
Marco Rubio with his allies: Democrat Churck Schumer and RINO John McCain

First, let’s review what happened in Libya, and who owns it. Then, we’ll see where Marco Rubio stood on the issue.

The Daily Caller notes:

Clinton is, undoubtedly, the person most responsible for getting America into the international effort that toppled the regime of Muammar Gaddafi. Prior to the Benghazi attack, she was happy to have it known as “Hillary’s War” and touted it as a serious accomplishment.


Libya is now a failed state where all types of Islamic extremists find safe haven and illegal migrants are able to pass through on their way to an over-burdened Europe. There are no signs of success at all in the beleaguered country as it has descended into total anarchy.


[Hillary] was a-ok with the toppling of Egyptian president and U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak. But it wasn’t hip liberals who came to power after Mubarak was deposed — it was the Muslim Brotherhood who took over the reins in Egypt before a military coup ousted the Islamists in 2013.


Clinton was also the leading force in the Obama administration in backing rebels in Syria and wanted a more active role for America in that conflict. However, hardly any of the rebels seem much better than the current ruler Bashar al-Assad and many of them, such as ISIS, are far worse than the Iranian-backed despot.

So that’s three foreign policy disasters for Hillary: Libya, Egypt and Syria. Sounds pretty bad. But the Daily Caller leans right. Let’s see what the leftist Atlantic says about Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy.

They say:

In August, TheNew Yorker’s John Lee Anderson described the gains made by the Islamists as well as the consequences of ISIS fighters controlling territory in Libya:

Last November, battle-hardened Libyan Islamists, who had returned home from fighting in Iraq and Syria, along with Islamists from other countries, seized the eastern city of Derna and claimed it for ISIS. Emulating their comrades in Raqqa and Mosul, they stoned, shot, beheaded, and crucified people deemed guilty of espionage or ‘un-Islamic’ behavior. Last month, a rival militia loyal to Al Qaeda waged and won a battle for control of the city. The victors are said to have marched the captured ISIS commander through the streets naked before executing him. ISIS lost Derna, but in the past few months they have taken Qaddafi’s home town of Sirte and surrounding areas in Libya’s “Oil Crescent,” and have begun attacks on the outer defenses of the city of Misrata.

Alas, that’s not all:

For months, ISIS has been trumpeting its abduction and execution of African Christians in Libya. In February, a slick, ghoulish video showed twenty-one Egyptian hostages in orange jumpsuits being led along a beach by black-masked executioners, who forced them to kneel and then cut off their heads.

In April, another video appeared, showing the execution of twenty-nine Ethiopians in Libya. Gunmen who trained with ISIS in Libya were involved in the murder of twenty foreign tourists, at a Tunis museum in March, and thirty-eight more tourists, most of them British, at a seaside resort in Tunisia in June. These attacks focused attention on the fact that Libya, a vast, oil-rich, underpopulated country with a long southern-Mediterranean coastline, has become part of the self-proclaimed ISIS caliphate. In a parallel phenomenon, armed trafficking gangs in Libya are driving most of Africa’s illegal immigration to Europe. As many as a hundred and seventy thousand are thought to have made the crossing last year, with thousands dying en route. Unprecedented numbers are continuing to cross this year, taking advantage of the chaos in Libya.

An unnamed Obama Administration official told Anderson, “We think that the threat from ISIL-affiliated groups in Libya is very serious and we’re treating it that way.”

A strong case can be made that the war made Americans less safe.

Libya and Egypt were contained and peaceful before the U.S. Arab Spring interventions. After intervening in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood took over. After intervening in Libya, the Islamic State is rising. And after intervening in Syria, the Islamic State has a base there, too.

Do you know who backed Hillary in her Libya intervention plan?


Here’s an article from the Weekly Standard by Stephen Hayes, who is very favorable to Rubio, explaining how Rubio supported the Hillary-led intervention in Libya.

It says:

Senator Marco Rubio offered his full-throated support Wednesday for the U.S. intervention in Libya and called on President Barack Obama to be clear that regime change is the objective of America’s involvement.

[…]Last night, Rubio sent a letter to Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell, Democratic and Republican leaders in the Senate, calling for Congress to affirm Obama’s policy by authorizing the use of the military force in Libya and to make explicit the goal of regime change. “This resolution should also state that removing Moamar Qadhafi from power is in our national interest and therefore should authorize the President to accomplish this goal. To that end, the resolution should urge the President to immediately recognize the Interim Transitional National Council as the legitimate government in Libya.”

Qadhafi had voluntarily given up his weapons of mass destruction and invited inspectors in, after seeing Bush invade Afghanistan and Iraq. They were no threat to us, and there were no crucifixions of Christians, kidnappings, executions, etc. that we see now.

And now we have an Islamic State caliphate in Libya, as the UK Telegraph reported earlier this week:

Yet this latest [execution] broadcast was shot not in the Isil strongholds of Raqqa [Syria] or Mosul [Iraq] but the terror group’s new “caliphate” in Libya, where it now controls Colonel Gaddafi’s home city of Sirte, just 350 miles south of Italy.

[…]Formed by a vanguard of just a few dozen fighters a year ago, Isil’s Sirte chapter is now believed to be up to 3,000-strong, imposing a regime of beheadings and crucifixions.

Marco Rubio strongly supported the intervention in Libya, spurning conservatives and embracing Hillary Clinton and the far left. Now we have a caliphate in Islamic State in Libya. I’m a very hawkish person, and supported the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But Libya and Egypt interventions made no sense, and no Republican should have backed either of them.

War on women: Obama strategy lets ISIS rape, torture and murder women and girls


Hey Obama girls! I found your war on women... it's in Syria... you created it!
Hey Obama girls! I found your war on women… it’s in Syria… you voted for it!

This is by foreign policy expert Rebeccah Heinrichs writing in The Federalist.


Women and girls in Nigeria who are murdered or held captive for the sadistic whims of their Boka Haram captors are just one example, but there are countless more. Al-Shabab regularly brutalizes, rapes, and murders women and girls. ISIS has sought out Yazidi women and girls for slaughter and has taken captive thousands who are now victims of torture, systemic rape, and forced abortions, among other horrors. Christian women are also raped and, when they refuse to convert to ISIS’s Islam, are murdered, along with their Christian brothers.

[…][T]he Obama administration has failed to even begin to put together a serious military campaign to destroy the Islamic State, and the president and his supporters, including Hillary Clinton, are unwilling to identify the motivations of the global movement of Islamist groups. This is why it is fair to blame the administration for allowing the recent success and empowerment of these groups, and, consequently, the increased suffering of women and girls.

[…]This became all the more evident right after the horrific November Paris attacks when the French retaliated by taking out ISIS sites. This caused many to ask the obvious question: Why hadn’t the United States already included those specific targets on its list? In fact, if the United States were serious about taking out ISIS, it would have already destroyed those targets along with the rest of the infrastructure ISIS has come to rely on to operate as a government authority.

But, exposing just how selectively limited the U.S. strikes remain, former Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Morrell recently admitted, “We didn’t go after oil wells — actually hitting oil wells that ISIS controls because we didn’t want to do environmental damage, and we didn’t want to destroy that infrastructure.”

Let that sink in. These militants are brutally killing in ways to maximize suffering, selling children into slavery, raping young women and girls, torturing, recruiting citizens of Western countries to join their forces, gaining and holding territory, and exporting their terror in order to convert by the sword. And President Obama refuses to take out their oil wells out of concern for the environment.

But it’s OK, because as we know from Bernie Sanders, global warming is actually the cause of Islamic terrorism. Obama and John Kerry say that global warming is the top national security threat. So who cares about actual girls and women? We have to be more concerned about global warming.

Ladies and gentlemen, the real war on women.

And one last point for all the compassionate leftists who are pushing for bringing in hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees. Why are there hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees? Why, because the leftists voted for a President who pulled our forces out of Iraq.

Retreat has consequences, ignorant leftists:

The president’s inability to see how his policies share the responsibility for the instability and humanitarian crises is almost unbelievable. Perhaps there’s no better example of this than the way he has inflamed the debate over the Syrian refugees. Waves of suffering Syrian men, women, and children are fleeing their country for fear of their lives.

But just a few years ago, before the refugee crisis, when Assad began terrorizing the Syrian people with chemical weapons and barrel bombs, President Obama could have decided then and there to hit back at Assad. President Obama chose not to empower what was then the more easily distinguishable moderate Syrian forces.

You can do foreign policy by substituting piety and feelings for rational thought. The goal is not to feel good, it is to do good, and retreating from a fight with evil does not do good.

Obama was elected to “end the wars”, but now we know how his deliberate weakness actually started a war on women. The REAL war on women, not the one that college students complain about when they demand free condoms and student loan forgiveness.

27 Iraqi Christians face deportation, as Obama welcomes 200,000 Syrian Muslims

He's better at golf than foreign policy
He’s better at golf than foreign policy

Story from Christian Today.


A small group of Iraqi Christians persecuted in their homeland are wondering why they are being deported from the U.S. while the Obama administration is trying its best to justify giving asylum to thousands of Muslim refugees from Syria.

A total of 27 Chaldean Christians who have been driven from their homeland by Al Qaeda and ISIS militants managed to enter the U.S. from Mexico in April and May this year, Fox News reported.

The Chaldeans are trying to join the thriving Iraqi Christian community in and around San Diego, California, but now they face an uncertain future as their applications for religious asylum have been rejected by U.S. authorities allegedly due to “technicalities.”

“These are families who were split up because of religious persecution, and now the government – which we love – is preventing them from being reunited,” said Fr. Michael Bazzi, of St. Peter Chaldean Catholic Cathedral, in El Cajon, California. “We wonder why, for thousands of Muslims, the door is open to America, yet Christians are not allowed to come.”

The Chaldeans are among tens and possibly hundreds of thousands of Christians from Iraq and Syria who have been displaced by fighting in their respective countries and persecuted by Al Qaeda, Islamic State (ISIS) and even the Iraqi government, the Fox News report said.

[…]Moreover, supporters said the Chaldean Christians will not be a burden to the U.S. government since they have family members in San Diego willing to take them in. San Diego is home to one of the largest Chaldean populations in the U.S.Republicans and Christian leaders say persecuted Christians should be afforded extra protection.

“If the particular security threat you are concerned about is jihadist terror, there are no Christian jihadist terrorists,” said Andrew McCarthy, the former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York. “But for the purpose of asylum analysis, the question is likelihood of persecution. There is no question that Christians face more persecution in Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East than Muslims do. We should acknowledge that Christians are being subjected to genocide and take steps to protect them,” he told Fox News.

They’re not going to be dependent, they don’t support abortion and gay marriage, they’re not going to engage in terrorism, so that means they are not the kind of immigrant we want.

Meanwhile, regarding Clown President’s comments that most of his refugees are Muslim women and children, and so are harmless, we have these facts to counter his rhetoric:

[…]French police launched a raid on an apartment associated with the Paris attacks, resulting in the death of a female jihadist inside the flat.

Her name was Hasna Aitboulahcen, and what we know about her so far illustrates exactly what is so dangerous about the virulent ideology that is attacking Western civilization.

Hasna was not exactly your stereotypical portrait of a terrorist. Her friends and family described her as a “party girl” who drank alcohol and had multiple boyfriends. As the Washington Post reports:

“We saw her quite often and we called her ‘The Cowgirl’ because she was always wearing a large hat,” one neighbor said. She rarely visited the mosque, and her brother told authorities that he had not once seen her open up a Koran, CNN reports …

Lately, she had taken to calling herself a jihad fanatic. Last June, she posted a photo of herself in a niqab with the caption (using French shorthand): “I will soon go to syria [sic] inchallah [God willing] soon I will leave for turkey.”

That an “outgoing French girl” can turn quickly into a violent jihadist who apparently aided in the Paris attacks tells us how powerful and unpredictable the ideology can be — drawing in not just angry, young and underprivileged Middle Eastern men, but also Parisian girls who were thought to have “loved life.”

President Obama was hardly on stronger ground when he mocked Americans for concerns about even children coming from Syria. The perpetrators of one of the most famous recent terror attacks on U.S. soil, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev — Islamist terrorists who set off bombs at the Boston Marathon in 2013 — came to the United States as child asylum seekers. A relatively normal childhood in America did not prevent them from being radicalized.

Why doesn’t Obama know these things? Because his worldview only allows him to think that one religion can be terrorist: Christianity. He cannot imagine that the real villains really are evil. Perhaps that’s why the number of deaths due to terrorism has more than QUADRUPLED since we exchanged the hawkish George W. Bush for the anti-American defeatist Barack Obama in 2009. America can be a force for good in the world, when we are fund and deploy our military to deter aggression. Obama’s priorities have been cutting the military and turning victories into defeats by retreating.