The Belarus Democracy Act of 2004

The Belarus Democracy Act of 2004 is a United States federal law that authorizes assistance for political parties, non-governmental organizations, and independent media working for democracy and human rights in Belarus. The act was signed by President George W. Bush and passed unanimously by the U.S. Congress on October 4, 2004.
The law expresses the sense of Congress that the Belarusian authorities should not receive various types of non-humanitarian financial aid from the U.S. It also calls for the President to report to Congress on arms sales by Belarus to state sponsors of terrorism and on the personal wealth and assets of senior Belarus officials.
State Department spokesman Richard Boucher says the U.S. is concerned about the Belarusian government’s increasingly repressive steps against independent media and pro-democracy groups. He says that Belarusian security forces used excessive force against peaceful protesters following the parliamentary elections and referendum.
The U.S., said President Bush, “will work with our allies and partners to assist those seeking to return Belarus to its rightful place among the Euro-Atlantic community of democracies.”
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko considers this act an intervention into the internal affairs of Belarus.
On December 8, 2006, the United States House of Representatives renewed an amended version of the act.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Franklin Delano Roosevelt ( /ˈroʊzəvɛlt/ roh-zuh-velt or /ˈroʊzəvəlt/ roh-zuh-vlt; January 30, 1882 – April 12, 1945), also known by his initials, FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States (1933–1945) and a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of worldwide economic depression and total war. A Democrat, the only American president elected to more than two terms, he facilitated a durable coalition that realigned American politics for decades. With the bouncy popular song “Happy Days Are Here Again” as his campaign theme, FDR defeated incumbent Republican Herbert Hoover in November 1932, at the depth of the Great Depression. Energized by his personal victory over paralytic illness, FDR’s unfailing optimism and activism contributed to a renewal of the national spirit.[1] He worked closely with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin in leading the Allies against Germany and Japan in World War II, but died just as victory was in sight.
In his first hundred days in office, which began March 4, 1933, Roosevelt spearheaded major legislation and issued a profusion of executive orders that instituted the New Deal—a variety of programs designed to produce relief (government jobs for the unemployed), recovery (economic growth), and reform (through regulation of Wall Street, banks and transportation). The economy improved rapidly from 1933 to 1937, but then relapsed into a deep recession. The bipartisan Conservative Coalition that formed in 1937 prevented his packing the Supreme Court or passing any considerable legislation; it abolished many of the relief programs when unemployment diminished during World War II. Most of the regulations on business were ended about 1975–85, except for the regulation of Wall Street by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which still exists. Along with several smaller programs, major surviving programs include the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which was created in 1933, and Social Security, which Congress passed in 1935.
As World War II loomed after 1938, with the Japanese invasion of China and the aggressions of Nazi Germany, FDR gave strong diplomatic and financial support to China and the United Kingdom, while remaining officially neutral. His goal was to make America the “Arsenal of Democracy” which would supply munitions to the Allies. In March 1941, Roosevelt, with Congressional approval, provided Lend-Lease aid to the countries fighting against Nazi Germany with Britain. With very strong national support, he made war on Japan and Germany after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, calling it a “date which will live in infamy”. He supervised the mobilization of the U.S. economy to support the Allied war effort. As an active military leader, Roosevelt implemented an overall war strategy on two fronts that ended in the defeat of the Axis Powers and the development of the world’s first atom bomb. In 1942 Roosevelt ordered the internment of 100,000 Japanese American civilians. Unemployment dropped to 2%, relief programs largely ended, and the industrial economy grew rapidly to new heights as millions of people moved to new jobs in war centers, and 16 million men and 300,000 women were drafted or volunteered for military service.
Roosevelt dominated the American political scene not only during the twelve years of his presidency, but also for decades afterward. He orchestrated the realignment of voters that created the Fifth Party System. FDR’s New Deal Coalition united labor unions, big city machines, white ethnics, African Americans and rural white Southerners. Roosevelt’s diplomatic impact also resonated on the world stage long after his death, with the United Nations and Bretton Woods as examples of his administration’s wide-ranging impact. Roosevelt is consistently rated by scholars as one of the top three U.S. Presidents.
A liberal and a Democrat, Roosevelt defined his ideological position as “a little left of center”.[2]

Iran thrilled over Obama re-election

KAHLILI: Iran thrilled over Obama re-election

Smooth sailing ahead for nuclear ambitions

By Reza Kahlili

 

Friday, November 23, 2012

In his first news conference after re-election, President Obama said there was still time for a diplomatic solution on Iran’s nuclear program and that Iran could enjoy “peaceful nuclear power” if it meets international obligations.

Diplomacy has failed and international sanctions, though having some effect, have not persuaded the radicals ruling Iran to stop their illicit nuclear program. The economic screws must be tightened.

Iranian leaders did not hide their satisfaction in Mr. Obama’s re-election and the prospect of more negotiations, which, in their view, will buy them more time to develop nuclear weapons.

Professor Pirooz Mojtahedzade, who teaches political geography at Tehran University, said in a recent interview, “Perhaps one reason for Obama’s success in his re-election campaign was his opposition to the warmongering Prime Minister [Benjamin Netanyahu] of Israel, which officially eliminated the effect of the Zionist lobby in presidential elections, and the result of this is that the Israel lobby will not have much effect on U.S. politics in the next four years.

“I have no doubt that the U.S. desires negotiations. We must remember the promises by Obama in his first four years to change U.S. politics internally and externally to address international matters peacefully, including Iran’s nuclear energy program through negotiations and peaceful means,” Mr. Mojtahedzade said.

His thoughts were echoed in several other analyses in Iranian media. One said America is in no way looking for a confrontation with Iran and, in fact, has such a confrontation as its red line. Therefore, it’s only natural that the Islamic republic is aware of this limited U.S. strategy and will benefit from it, the analysis argued.

Proof of that claim, the analysis said, is the recent incident in which Revolutionary Guards fighter jets shot at a U.S. drone. America reacted to the incident cautiously, not militarily, diplomatically or even publicly.

It is with this belief that the regime has successfully dragged out international talks about its illicit nuclear program over the past four years while making significant progress toward nuclear weapons.

When Mr. Obama took office in 2009, the Islamic regime had barely enough enriched uranium for one nuclear bomb. Today, it has enough for six, if further enriched. In 2009, Iran was enriching uranium at one facility in Natanz. Today, enrichment goes on with thousands more centrifuges spinning at another facility in Fordo. The latter is deep underground and immune to airstrikes. In 2009, the regime was limited to 3.5 percent enrichment. Now, it is enriching to 20 percent, a significant step toward weaponization. Most alarming is that the regime is within days of ramping up production of 20 percent-level uranium, doubling its output. This would cut in half the time needed to acquire enough highly enriched uranium for a bomb.

A Nov. 16 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) indicated that it has received further information that “Iran has carried out activities that are relevant to the development of a nuclear device.” This is while Iran has stonewalled an IAEA request for months to inspect the military site at Parchin, where it is believed the regime tested an explosive device that could help with the development of a nuclear weapon.

I revealed recently that one secret site at which Iran is conducting nuclear work is in the outskirts of Najafabad, in the province of Isfahan. A team of Iranian scientists headed by Mohsen Fakhrizadeh-Mahabadi, the father of Iran’s nuclear program, has been secretly testing a neutron detonator and implosion system, designing and building a nuclear warhead to arm Iran’s Shahab-3 ballistic missile and working on separating plutonium for a plutonium implosion-type fission bomb.

Despite the 2007 U.S. National Intelligence Estimate saying Iran had halted work on nuclear weapons as early as 2003, the Iranians never did — something that the Nov. 16 IAEA report also verified.

With the current crises in the Middle East and Iran arming Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah and other terrorist groups, one thing is certain: If the regime becomes nuclear-armed, proliferation will become a nightmare, world stability and the global economy will become its hostage, and uncertainty and instability will rule.

On Nov. 18, Mr. Obama supported Israel’s right to defend itself. At the same time, reports indicated that the State Department has refused visas to Iranian officials to attend a U.N. meeting on human rights. These actions may dent Iran’s favorable outlook toward Mr. Obama’s second term.

However, in order to avoid war, similar messages of strength must be sent to Iran so that we make sure the Islamic regime will not underestimate U.S. resolve, or the war we want to avoid will be the war we will see on a much greater scale.

Read more: KAHLILI: Iran thrilled over Obama re-election – Washington Times http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/nov/23/iran-thrilled-over-obama-re-election/#ixzz2D6G7MQ7T
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

$6,933 tax hike for New Jersey families

Sandy-Ravaged New Jersey Families Face $6,933 Tax Hike in Fiscal Cliff Stalemate

Christopher Goins
cnsnews.com
November 23, 2012

Families in Hurricane Sandy-ravaged New Jersey will face the highest tax increase as a percentage of their income – 6.82% or about $6,933 more in taxes — if Congress does not reach an agreement on the fiscal cliff tax issues during the lame-duck session, according to an analysis by the Tax Foundation.

In its study of how the fiscal cliff would affect typical families in each state, the Tax Foundation reports that if the numerous tax provisions that are due to expire on Dec. 31 are not changed, a four-person family in New Jersey with a median income of $101,682 will see its taxes go up at a rate 6.82 percent of its income, which translates into about $6,933.

The tax issues in question are the expiration of the Bush tax rates, which also include the elimination of the 10 percent tax bracket and the reduced deduction for married filers; ending the 2 percent cut to employee-side Social Security taxes; and the Alternative Minimum Tax.

The Writer by Richard Wilbur

The Writer
by Richard Wilbur

In her room at the prow of the house
Where light breaks, and the windows are tossed with linden,
My daughter is writing a story.

I pause in the stairwell, hearing
From her shut door a commotion of typewriter-keys
Like a chain hauled over a gunwale.

Young as she is, the stuff
Of her life is a great cargo, and some of it heavy:
I wish her a lucky passage.

But now it is she who pauses,
As if to reject my thought and its easy figure.
A stillness greatens, in which

The whole house seems to be thinking,
And then she is at it again with a bunched clamor
Of strokes, and again is silent.

I remember the dazed starling
Which was trapped in that very room, two years ago;
How we stole in, lifted a sash

And retreated, not to affright it;
And how for a helpless hour, through the crack of the door,
We watched the sleek, wild, dark

And iridescent creature
Batter against the brilliance, drop like a glove
To the hard floor, or the desk-top,

And wait then, humped and bloody,
For the wits to try it again; and how our spirits
Rose when, suddenly sure,

It lifted off from a chair-back,
Beating a smooth course for the right window
And clearing the sill of the world.

It is always a matter, my darling,
Of life or death, as I had forgotten. I wish
What I wished you before, but harder.

Seven Biblical Reasons Why Christians Should Support Israel

Seven Biblical Reasons
Why Christians Should Support Israel
By Pastor John Hagee
Everything Christians do should be based upon the Biblical text. Here are seven solid Bible reasons why Christians should support Israel.
1. Genesis 12:3 “And I will bless them that bless thee and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all nations of the earth be blessed.” Point: God has promised to bless the man or nation that blesses the Chosen People. History has proven beyond reasonable doubt that the nations that have blessed the Jewish people have had the blessing of God; the nations that have cursed the Jewish people have experienced the curse of God.
2. St. Paul recorded in Romans 15:27 “For if the Gentiles have shared in their (the Jews)
spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things.”
Christians owe a debt of eternal gratitude to the Jewish people for their contributions
that gave birth to the Christian faith. Jesus Christ, a prominent Rabbi from Nazareth said, “Salvation is of the Jews!” (St. John 4:22) consider what the Jewish people have given to Christianity:
a) The Sacred Scripture
b) The Prophets
c) The Patriarchs
d) Mary, Joseph, and Jesus Christ of Nazareth
e) The Twelve Disciples
f) The Apostles.
It is not possible to say, “I am a Christian” and not love the Jewish people. The Bible
teaches that love is not what you say, but what you do. (1 John 3:18) “A bell is not a bell
until you ring it, a song is not a song until you sing it, love is not love until you share it.”
3. While some Christians try to deny the connection between Jesus of Nazareth and the
Jews of the world, Jesus never denied his Jewishness. He was born Jewish, He was
circumcised on the eighth day in keeping with Jewish tradition, He had his Bar Mitzvah
on his 13th birthday, He kept the law of Moses, He wore the Prayer Shawl Moses
commanded all Jewish men to wear, and He died on a cross with an inscription over His head, “King of the Jews!”
Jesus considered the Jewish people His family. Jesus said (Matthew 25:40) “Verily I
say unto you, Inasmuch as you have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren
(the Jewish people . . . Gentiles were never called His brethren), ye have done it unto me.”
4. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, they shall prosper that love thee.” (Psalm 122:6) the scriptural principle of prosperity is tied to blessing Israel and the city of Jerusalem.

 

5. Why did Jesus Christ go to the house of Cornelius in Capernaum and heal his servant, who was ready to die? What logic did the Jewish elders use with Jesus to convince Him to come into the house of a Gentile and perform a miracle?

 The logic they used is recorded in Luke 7:5; “For He loveth our nation, and He hath built us a synagogue.” The message? This Gentile deserves the blessing of God because he loves our nation and has done something practical to bless the Jewish people.

6. Why did God the Father select the house of Cornelius in Caesarea (Acts Chapter 10) to be the first Gentile house in Israel to receive the Gospel? The answer is given repeatedly in Acts Chapter 10. 

Acts 10:2 states: “a devout man, (Cornelius) and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always.” Who were the people to whom Cornelius gave these alms? They were the Jews! 

Again is Acts 10:4: “[T]hy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.”
Again in Acts 10:31 “[A]nd thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.”
The point is made three times in the same chapter. A godly Gentile who expressed his
unconditional love for the Jewish people in a practical manner was divinely selected by
heaven to be the first Gentile house to receive the Gospel and the first to receive the
outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
These combined Scriptures verify that PROSPERITY (Genesis 12:3 and Psalm 122:6),
HEALING (Luke 7:1-5) and the OUTPOURING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT came first to
Gentiles that blessed the Jewish people and the nation of Israel in a practical manner.
7. We support Israel because all other nations were created by an act of men, but Israel was created by an act of God. The Royal Land Grant that was given to Abraham and his seed through Isaac and Jacob with an everlasting and unconditional covenant.
(Genesis 12:1-3, 13:14-18, 15:1-21, 17:4-8, 22:15-18, 26:1-5 and Psalm 89:28-37.)

Feds offer $1 million reward for “Fast and Furious” Killers

Feds Offer $1 Million Reward for Alleged ‘Fast and Furious’ Killers

By PIERRE THOMAS, JACK CLOHERTY and JACK DATE | ABC News – Mon, Jul 9, 2012

  • Feds Offer $1 Million Reward for Alleged 'Fast and Furious' Killers (ABC News)

    Enlarge PhotoABC News – Feds Offer $1 Million Reward for Alleged ‘Fast and Furious’ Killers (ABC News)

Justice Department officials today offered $1 million for the capture of the five Mexican “border bandits” who killed Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry with an ATF-sourced weapon in the mountains south of Tucson.

Agent Terry’s death has been at the center of the Congressional investigation into a botched ATF gun-smuggling investigation dubbed “Fast and Furious.” Two weapons linked to the shooting of Agent Terry made it into criminal hands as a result of that operation, which sought to track smuggled guns to drug cartel kingpins. A dispute between Congressional investigators and the Justice Department over “Fast and Furious” documents led to Attorney General Eric Holder being held in contempt of Congress last month.

But despite all the controversy, the details of how Agent Terry was killed have never been revealed until now.

At a news conference in Tucson, Justice Department officials said that on December 14, 2010, Agent Terry and his Border Patrol team were trying to intercept five men who had crossed into the U.S. from Mexico and tripped electronic sensors planted in the southern Arizona desert. The federal agents confronted the men, opening fire with beanbags, not bullets.

 

 

 

It turned out the men were “border bandits,” armed gangsters who rob drug smugglers. The bandits returned fire, and in the firefight, Agent Terry was killed. One of the bandits was shot in the foot, and taken into custody, but four other suspects escaped while agents were tending to Agent Terry.

Today, an indictment charging five individuals involved in the death of Agent Terry was unsealed in Tucson, and a reward of up to $1 million from the FBI for information leading to the arrest of four fugitives was announced by Department of Justice officials.

According to the indictment, Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, Jesus Rosario Favela-Astorga, Ivan Soto-Barraza, Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes and Lionel Portillo-Meza are charged with crimes including first degree murder, second degree murder, conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, attempted interference with commerce by robbery, use and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence, assault on a federal officer and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person. A sixth defendant, Rito Osorio-Arellanes, is charged only with conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery.

In addition to the murder of Agent Terry, the indictment also alleges that the five defendants assaulted Border Patrol agents William Castano, Gabriel Fragoza and Timothy Keller, who were with Agent Terry during the firefight.

[Related: GOP using me as ‘proxy’ to attack Obama, says Holder]

“Brian Terry was truly an agent’s agent,” U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of California Laura E. Duffy said at the press conference today. Duffy promised Terry’s family “the very best” her office had to offer. “We will not rest until these individuals are brought to justice.”

“Agent Terry served his country honorably and made the ultimate sacrifice in trying to protect it from harm, and we will stop at nothing to bring those responsible for his murder to justice,” said Attorney General Eric Holder in a statement. “This investigation has previously resulted in one defendant being charged with Agent Terry’s murder and taken into custody, and today’s announcement reflects the department’s unrelenting commitment to finding and arresting the other individuals responsible for this horrific tragedy so that Agent Terry’s family, friends and fellow law enforcement agents receive the justice they deserve.”

“U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry made the ultimate sacrifice in December of 2010, while protecting our border,” stated James L. Turgal Jr., FBI Special Agent in Charge, Phoenix Division. “Today’s announcement is an important step forward in the pursuit of justice for Border Patrol Agent Terry and his family. It is our hope that the publicity surrounding this case will lead to information concerning the whereabouts of the remaining four fugitives.”

Manuel Osorio-Arellanes has been in custody since his arrest the night of the shooting. Rito Osorio-Arellanes has been in custody since Dec. 12, 2010, when he was arrested by Border Patrol agents on immigration charges. The indictment is being unsealed today in order to seek the public’s assistance in locating the four fugitive defendants.

This case is being prosecuted in federal court in Tucson by attorneys from the Southern District of California, Special Attorneys Todd W. Robinson, David D. Leshner, and Fred A. Sheppard. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona is recused, because of its involvement in the “Fast and Furious” operation.

Federal Court Denies First Amendment Rights to Christian Company

Fed Court Rules Hobby Lobby Must Pay for Morning After Pill

Kurt Nimmo
Infowars.com
November 23, 2012
A federal court has ruled that Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby and sister company Mardel must cover the morning-after pill and week-after pill as part of employee health insurance plans.
Coverage of the abortion pill is mandated by Obamacare.
The Green family that owns Hobby Lobby will be socked with a $1.3 million daily fine beginning January 1 if they refuse to provide the coverage. The store has 13,000 full-time employees at 500 stores in 41 states and provides its own health insurance.
The Christian family-owned and biblically founded arts and crafts company asked the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to block enforcement of the law. The company believes the “use of the morning-after and week-after birth control pills are tantamount to abortion because they prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in a woman’s womb,” according to CBS News.
Government lawyers argued earlier this month that the drugs do not induce abortions and that the feds have a compelling interest in mandating insurance coverage. The drugs are considered emergency postcoital contraception and are intended to disrupt ovulation or fertilization.
U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton ruled that although religious organizations and corporations have been granted constitutional protection from provisions of Obamacare regarding birth-control measures, the government does not consider Hobby Lobby a religious organization.
According to the government, the plaintiffs “have not cited, and the court has not found, any case concluding that secular, for-profit corporations such as Hobby Lobby and Mardel have a constitutional right to the free exercise of religion.”
“Every American, including family business owners like the Greens, should be free to live and do business according to their religious beliefs,” said Kyle Duncan, general counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, in a statement. The organization is representing Hobby Lobby in court.