Conservative Wanderer

“A troubled and afflicted mankind looks to us, pleading for us to keep our rendezvous with destiny; that we will uphold the principles of self-reliance, self-discipline, morality, and, above all, responsible liberty for every individual that we will become that shining city on a hill.” — Ronald Wilson Reagan

Obama’s Latest Scapegoat For Gas Prices: Israel

He really wants to blame anyone except himself and anything except his own energy policies for higher gas prices:

The Obama administration is blaming Israel for the recent rise in global crude oil prices, according to a Sunday report in The World Tribune. The rise in fuel prices is deemed as harming the U.S. economy and has also hurt Obama in the polls as he seeks re-election in November.

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Iran Invades Iraq!

UPI:

ERBIL, Iraq, July 11 (UPI) — Iranian forces are stationed about a 1 1/2 miles inside the Iraq border as part of an operation targeting Kurdish militants, a border official said.

A source inside the border patrol in the northern Kurdish provinces of Iraq said Iranian forces crossed the border during the weekend in pursuit of members of the Party for Free Life in Kurdistan, or PJAK.

“The Iranian force is still stationed at the same positions it penetrated into on Sunday, following clashes between both sides,” the source told the Voices of Iraqi news agency.

Stationing troops inside another nation’s borders without permission is generally referred to as an “invasion.”

But did you hear about it on the evening news? If the websites are any indication, no, you didn’t.

CNN’s top stories in World (all of these are as of the time of this writing and may change):

Pakistani official downplays U.S. decision

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and Pakistan’s U.S. ambassador discuss the latest rift in U.S.-Pakistani relations. FULL STORY

Top World Stories

MSNBC?

Reports: Ex-UK PM targeted in hack attack

Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown had his personal information targeted by elements of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, reports say. Full story

World’s first double leg transplant done in Spain
Clinton: Syria’s Assad has lost legitimacy to rule
NYT: Suspect freed in Afghan mutilation case
High levels of radiation in Japanese beef
Egyptians demand justice for slain protesters
‘Metal coffin’: 128 dead as Russia boat sinks

Maybe ABC has something…

International News

Syrian Protesters Attack US, French Embassies

Assad loyalists attack US, French embassies in Syria after envoys visit opposition stronghold

Murdoch’s BSkyB Deal Stalls After Scandal

Rupert Murdoch’s empire is on shaky ground after the phone hacking scandal.

Death Toll at 67 in India Train Wreckage

More bodies have been pulled from wreckage of derailed train in northern India.

Russian Cruise Ship Sinks, 90 Missing

Hope is fading for about 90 still missing day after cruise boat sinks in Volga.

Porn Addicts Find Treatment at Online Website

HeLP Addiction treats porn addicts via the Internet.

Kate Speaks as Royal Couple Leaves for Home

Kate says she “really enjoyed” the as royal couple leaves U.S. for England.

Brit Bishop Loses Appeal for Denying Holocaust

Bishop Richard Williamson does not believe Jews were gassed in World War II.

Music Festival Lures Fans to Arctic Circle

Festival-goers must make a journey that includes airplanes, boats and walking.

7.3 Quake Rocks Northeastern Japan

No injuries or damages have been reported.

Panetta: Al Qaeda’s Defeat ‘Within Reach’

New Defense Secretary begins first tour of war region as head of Pentagon.

South Sudan Celebrates Becoming a Nation

This moment of freedom was a culmination of decades of war and struggle.

Foreign-Made Parts Threaten Cyber Security

Some parts are used to make companies, consumers vulnerable, official says.

Watch: U.S. Embassy Vandalized in Syria

Syrian government supporters attack the American and French embassies.

Okay, maybe CBS:

Top World News

Prince Albert, Charlene wed in MonacoSome 2,000 headliners gather to watch the religious ceremony capping two days of wedding events Read Blog

Iran Deploys “Cyber Police”

One more avenue for the Iranian thugocracy to oppress the Iranian people:

TEHRAN, Iran—Iran’s state TV says the country has launched its first cyber police unit in the latest attempt by authorities to gain an edge in the digital world.

The Internet has been a key outlet for Iran’s political opposition since the disputed presidential election in 2009. Iran also has been trying to boost its web defenses after the Stuxnet computer worm made its way into computers involved with its nuclear program.

Any bets on whether or not the only thing allowed on the Iranian internet will be state-approved propaganda?

Human Rights Watch’s Founder Castigates His Own Organization

Gotta love a man with this sort of honesty and integrity. Robert Bernstein writes:

AS the founder of Human Rights Watch, its active chairman for 20 years and now founding chairman emeritus, I must do something that I never anticipated: I must publicly join the group’s critics. Human Rights Watch had as its original mission to pry open closed societies, advocate basic freedoms and support dissenters. But recently it has been issuing reports on the Israeli-Arab conflict that are helping those who wish to turn Israel into a pariah state.

At Human Rights Watch, we always recognized that open, democratic societies have faults and commit abuses. But we saw that they have the ability to correct them — through vigorous public debate, an adversarial press and many other mechanisms that encourage reform.

That is why we sought to draw a sharp line between the democratic and nondemocratic worlds, in an effort to create clarity in human rights. We wanted to prevent the Soviet Union and its followers from playing a moral equivalence game with the West and to encourage liberalization by drawing attention to dissidents like Andrei Sakharov, Natan Sharansky and those in the Soviet gulag — and the millions in China’s laogai, or labor camps.

When I stepped aside in 1998, Human Rights Watch was active in 70 countries, most of them closed societies. Now the organization, with increasing frequency, casts aside its important distinction between open and closed societies.

[snip]

Human Rights Watch has lost critical perspective on a conflict in which Israel has been repeatedly attacked by Hamas and Hezbollah, organizations that go after Israeli citizens and use their own people as human shields. These groups are supported by the government of Iran, which has openly declared its intention not just to destroy Israel but to murder Jews everywhere. This incitement to genocide is a violation of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

Leaders of Human Rights Watch know that Hamas and Hezbollah chose to wage war from densely populated areas, deliberately transforming neighborhoods into battlefields. They know that more and better arms are flowing into both Gaza and Lebanon and are poised to strike again. And they know that this militancy continues to deprive Palestinians of any chance for the peaceful and productive life they deserve. Yet Israel, the repeated victim of aggression, faces the brunt of Human Rights Watch’s criticism.

It’s a shame that Bernstein stepped down from leading HRW in 1998, otherwise they might not be having the problems he writes about.

Kudos to Mr. Bernstein for his intestinal fortitude, and kudos to the New York Times for printing it.

Putin: Don’t Intimidate Iran

First Russia’s Foreign Minister, now the man-behind-the-throne Putin himself, are indicating that Obama’s capitulation on missile defense hasn’t done a thing to bring Russia closer to a strong stance on Iran… if anything, Obama’s weakness is making Russia feel it’s okay to move away from a strong stance:

BEIJING (Reuters) – Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin warned major powers on Wednesday against intimidating Iran and said talk of sanctions against the Islamic Republic over its nuclear programme was “premature”.

Putin, who many diplomats, analysts, and Russian citizens believe is still Russia’s paramount leader despite stepping down as president last year, was speaking after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Moscow for two days of talks.

“There is no need to frighten the Iranians,” Putin told reporters in Beijing after a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

“We need to look for a compromise. If a compromise is not found, and the discussions end in a fiasco, then we will see.”

“And if now, before making any steps (towards holding talks) we start announcing some sanctions, then we won’t be creating favourable conditions for them (talks) to end positively. This is why it is premature to talk about this now.”

Clinton failed to secure any specific assurances from Russia on Iran during her visit, leaving her open to criticism at home that she had not received anything from Moscow after earlier U.S. concessions on missile defence.

Earth to President Obama! International diplomacy isn’t Christmas gift-giving. Giving the Russians what they want doesn’t necessarily mean they are going to give us what we want.

I fear not only for our nation, but for this world.

Russia Resists Sanctions On Iran

From no less an impeccable lefty source than the New York Times:

MOSCOW — Denting President Obama’s hopes for a powerful ally in his campaign to press Iran on its nuclear program, Russia’s foreign minister said Tuesday that threatening Tehran now with harsh new sanctions would be “counterproductive.”

The minister, Sergey V. Lavrov, said after meeting with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton here that diplomacy should be given a chance to work, particularly after a meeting in Geneva earlier this month in which the Iranian government said it would allow United Nations inspectors to visit its clandestine nuclear enrichment facility near the holy city of Qum.

“At the current stage, all forces should be thrown at supporting the negotiating process,” he said. “Threats, sanctions and threats of pressure in the current situation, we are convinced, would be counterproductive.”

But, but, but… wasn’t stopping Iran supposed to be a quid pro quo for Obama canceling missile defense plans for eastern Europe? Indeed it was, at least that’s what we were told.

In short, Obama got rolled by Russia. He should have learned from the greatest of modern presidents, Ronald Reagan: “Trust, but verify.”

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