The EU and the Coronavirus Pandemic  

By Dr. Tsilla Hershco, BESA

Coronavirus in Italy image via Pixabay

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The coronavirus pandemic has exposed many of the EU’s inherent weaknesses, from its total unpreparedness for the crisis, to the open borders that expedited the spread of the disease, to the lack of solidarity reflected in member states’ refusal to help Italy in the initial critical phase of the pandemic. The union cooperates well in non-crisis situations, but its complacency, lumbering bureaucracy, and sluggish decision-making processes hamper its ability to respond to urgent developments.

The coronavirus epidemic has exposed the EU’s gravest flaws. It failed to make plans for state cooperation to combat an epidemic, should one arise. The Union’s open border policy in accordance with the Schengen Agreement, which it considers its cardinal achievement, has turned out to be a major hindrance to the effort to contain the virus. The Union refused to suspend the Schengen Agreement even as the virus rapidly picked up momentum and minimized the dangers of the pandemic to the general public, missteps with grave human costs. Read more…

April 2, 2020 | 10:15 am | 2 Comments » | 228 views

Boom: US Intelligence Concludes China’s Government is Lying About Coronavirus Infections and Deaths  

By Guy Benson, TOWNHALL

Boom: US Intelligence Concludes China's Government is Lying About Coronavirus Infections and Deaths

It’s beyond obvious that they’ve been lying, and it looks like the facade is starting to crumble internally, too.  Let’s start with a reminder of how preposterous the ‘official’ stats have been.  This chart depicts how Hong Kong — an island of openness that moved aggressively against Coronavirus in its early stages, with a fair amount of success — supposedly accounts for a wildly disproportionate number of China’s total active cases.  The only logical conclusion here is that the mainland numbers are scandalously underreported, as underscored by the heavy sarcasm in this tweet:
Read more…
April 2, 2020 | 6:46 am | 38 Comments » | 409 views

Iran is ramping up threats to US in Iraq  

What appears to be going on in Iraq is some jockeying for position before the war. This is like the so-called Phoney War that preceded the invasion of France in April 1940.

By Seth Frantzman, JPOST

Members of Iran's Revolutionary Guards march during a military parade to commemorate the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war in Tehran (photo credit: MORTEZA NIKOUBAZI/ REUTERS)

Members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards march during a military parade to commemorate the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war in Tehran

Iran and its proxies are increasing their systematic and coordinated threats against the US in Iraq. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has said that any “small mistake” by Washington would be met with force. It came as reports emerged that the IRGC Quds Force head Esmail Ghaani had travelled to Iraq. In Iraq the Iranian-backed proxy groups Kataib Hezbollah and others have upped their rhetoric against the US in the last days. US  President Donald Trump warned on Wednesday afternoon that “upon information and belief, Iran or its proxies are planning a sneak attack on US troops and/or assets in Iraq. If this happens, Iran will pay a very heavy price.”

Read more…

April 2, 2020 | 5:05 am | Comments » | 187 views

Early Coronavirus Skepticism Was Fueled by Expertise and Bad Data  

By Noah Rothman , COMMENTARY     4-1-20

How could this have happened? Even before the apex of the crisis has hit, this is the question that now vexes Washington.

Rep. Adam Schiff, the Washington Post’s David Ignatius revealed, is ready to get to the bottom of a disaster that seems to have no bottom. His House Intelligence Committee is preparing to launch an inquiry into the events that led to one of the more multidimensional calamities to ever afflict the country. That will be a vital retrospective, but the answer to the big question—how did everyone drop the ball this badly?—is self-evident if only because the fumbles are ongoing.

Within only the 24 hours preceding this writing, Florida and Texas abandoned their resistance to state-wide “stay-at-home” orders. Previously, the governors of these states had deferred to municipal officials, some of whom are more aggressive than others. In the effort to avoid the inevitable, they had adopted stopgap measures like stigmatizing the presence of New York City metro area residents, but that did little to arrest the already documented community spread of the Coronavirus in these states.
Read more…

April 2, 2020 | 4:29 am | 4 Comments » | 315 views

Is Israel heading to a 4th election?  

By Barry Shaw, IISS    APR 1, 2020, 12:58 PM

Deafened under the constant drumbeat of the virus crisis has been the ongoing efforts to form a new Israeli unity government.

What was perceived over a week ago as a quick solution between the Bibi-led Likud and the Ganz-led remnant of the Blue & White Party, cruelly named the Black & Blue Party by some members of the political right in Israel, has become bogged down in a tactical Game of Thrones, as the horse-trading for government ministries leads to friction and division.

What should have been a simple granting of departments to appease Ganz’s depleted grouping and the rapid establishment of a new government for the sake of a nation severely damaged by the growing spread of the China virus has become a tiresome quarrel over the minutia of who sits where. Read more…

April 2, 2020 | 4:17 am | 2 Comments » | 210 views

Why is Mnuchin pushing for a return to appeasement of Iran?  

By Jonathan S. Tobin, JNS     March 31, 2020

Iran’s people deserve sympathy for their coronavirus suffering. But the regime that oppresses them and is still working on a dangerous nuclear program deserves none.

The tyrants of Tehran are in trouble. The coronavirus pandemic has hit Iran particularly hard. That’s due, in no small measure, to the fact that, like their counterparts in China, the theocrats running the country suppressed news about the spread of the deadly disease, hampering efforts to contain it.

Nevertheless, they are determined to exploit the natural sympathy generated by the country’s plight in order to advance their political agenda.
Read more…

April 2, 2020 | 4:14 am | 1 Comment » | 215 views

Perspective: There were 83,780 Flu-Pneumonia Deaths in US this Season — So far Only 4,059 Coronavirus Deaths in US this Year  

by Jim Hoft, GATEWAY PUNDIT   April 1, 2020

The international community is currently experiencing the worst global panic in modern history.

Entire economies, including the US economy, are in complete free-fall over the coronavirus pandemic and panic.

It is always good to pause and look at the actual data and not the ever-changing “models” the “experts” continue to throw at us.

We posted on the current coronavirus numbers in a previous post today.

Now this from our friend Steve at Grassfire:
Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 7:09 pm | 9 Comments » | 209 views

The Haredi Disconnect  

By Victor Rosenthal

About 12% of Israel’s population are Haredim, often referred to as “ultra-orthodox,” an expression which they strongly dislike. The Haredi population is growing rapidly with a birthrate of about 7 children per woman, and if this growth rate continues, Haredim will be 32% of the population in 2065 (this estimate, however, is high because it does not take into account “dropouts” from the Haredi lifestyle). Their religious ideology varies, including Chasidim, Sefaradim, and Misnagdim (sometimes also inaccurately called “Lithuanians”). Among these major groupings there are numerous groups and sects, with strong differences in their beliefs, politics, and ways of life. It would be a mistake to generalize about “those guys in the black hats.”

On the other hand, some things are true in general, and they are not good things for the future of the state of Israel. Haredi schools mostly teach secular subjects like English, the sciences, and mathematics very poorly or not at all. The native language of many Haredi communities is Yiddish, not Hebrew. Most Haredi young men do not serve in the military, and prefer to study Torah in yeshivot than to work at a secular job. These facts make the expected increase in the percentage of the population that is Haredi extremely problematic for the future economy of the state.
Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 1:32 pm | 3 Comments » | 311 views

China is LYING:  

Locals in Wuhan say 42,000 people died, accounts of crematoria working 24/7

By Pamela Geller

Back in January, Geller Report published accounts of on-scene citizens in China who reported accounts of 10,000 DEAD in Wuhan.

The media ignored coronavirus in January. While President Trump was instituting travel restrictions to and from China, Democrats like Nancy Pelosi and NY’s Bill de Blasio urged Americans to ignore the “fearmongering” and “xenophobia” and co-mingle at events like the Chinese Lunar parades. Nancy Pelosi, touring San Fran’s Chinatown on Feb. 24, said,  “We do want to say to people, come to Chinatown, here we are … come join us. That was a full month after reports were coming out of China of mass death.

Geller Report was blocked on Facebook and designated fake news by “fact-checking sites” and PolitiFact because of our reporting on Coronavirus (a designation that still stands). GR was right. But facts are irrelevant. Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 1:19 pm | 6 Comments » | 393 views

Netanyahu faces a rebellion on the right as new government takes shape  

T. Belman. I think we are headed for a fourth election. Bibi gave up too much to secure his primership and immunity. Little is left of the right wing agenda.  What’s the point of being the PM if you had to give the most important ministerial posts, such as Judicial and Defense, to the left to get it.

I rather see Gantz as PM and Bennet as Defense and Shaked as Justice.

With growing anger among longtime allies, and some even threatening to bolt, the Likud leader risks an escalating showdown with an intransigent Benny Gantz

By Haviv Rettig Gur, ISRAEL HAYOM

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives to deliver a statement regarding his intention to file a request to the Knesset for immunity from prosecution, in Jerusalem on January 1, 2020. (Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives to deliver a statement regarding his intention to file a request to the Knesset for immunity from prosecution, in Jerusalem on January 1, 2020. (Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP)

Benjamin Netanyahu has a problem. After much fanfare and congratulations last Thursday from his right-wing allies over his successful breakup of Likud’s greatest political threat in over a decade — the 33-seat Blue and White faction led by Benny Gantz — the prime minister has spent the past five days coming to terms with the cost of that success.

The coalition talks between Netanyahu and Gantz are entering their sticky middle phase. Grand pronouncements and posturing have been replaced by the dry, complex bartering and persistent but unreliable leaks that signal they are at their most serious stage. It is here, in the hammering out of the most minute details of the next coalition’s decision-making process and ministry distribution, that the heart and soul of the next government, its fundamental workings and, ultimately, real center of power, will be determined.
Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 11:04 am | 17 Comments » | 432 views

Reports: Iran Has Lost 17 Officials, Nearly 15,000 People to Chinese Coronavirus  

By Frances Martel, BREITBART

Medics treat a patient infected with the new coronavirus, at a hospital in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, March 8, 2020. With the approaching Persian New Year, known as Nowruz, officials kept up pressure on people not to travel and to stay home. Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour, who gave Iran's new …
AP Photo/Mohammad Ghadamali

The Saudi news agency al-Arabiya identified in a report Monday at least 17 senior members of the Iranian Islamic regime who have died from the Chinese coronavirus since the outbreak in that country began.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the largest anti-regime dissident organization, claimed on Monday that nearly 15,000 people in the country have died of coronavirus infections, about five times the death toll the Iranian regime officials claims to have counted.

Tehran has documented 44,605 cases of Chinese coronavirus within its borders and claims 2,898 people have died since the outbreak began there. In addition to the NCRI, many observers – including local Iranian officials – have disputed this number, most simply by noting that adding up the number of cases and deaths recorded by each Iranian region results in a much larger number than the one documented by the federal government.
Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 10:11 am | 2 Comments » | 223 views

NYC’s coronavirus death toll tops 1,000  

T. Belman.  NYC has roughly the same population as Israel but 50 times the number of deaths.

By Julia Marsh and Tamar Lapin, NY POST

Life during the coronavirus in the Upper East Side of NYC
James Messerschmidt

The Big Apple’s coronavirus death toll topped 1,000 on Tuesday afternoon — with 164 people succumbing to the illness since the morning, city data shows.

The increase in fatalities from this morning’s death toll of 932 brought the number to 1,096.

That means at least 1,095 people have fallen victim to COVID-19 in the little more than two weeks since March 14, when the first death was reported in the Big Apple.

Some 41,771 people had been infected in the five boroughs as of 5 p.m. on Tuesday. The first case was reported March 1.

Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 8:02 am | 37 Comments » | 334 views

Blue and White under pressure to compromise on ministers  

Likud, Blue and White restart talks

By Gil Hoffman, JPOST

Benny Gantz, head of Blue and White party, looks on as he gives a statement to the media in Ramat Gan, Israel March 1, 2020 (photo credit: NIR ELIAS / REUTERS)

Benny Gantz, head of Blue and White party, looks on as he gives a statement to the media in Ramat Gan, Israel March 1, 2020
(photo credit: NIR ELIAS / REUTERS)

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz faced pressure on Tuesday to give up his demand for the same number of ministers as the Likud and its satellite parties after complaints about the size of the government during an economic crisis caused by the coronavirus.

Likud and Blue and White’s negotiating teams met on Tuesday night by video conference after a day and a half with no talks.

The current plan remains for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s bloc of Likud, Shas, United Torah Judaism and Yamina to have 15 ministers and for Blue and White and Labor to have the same, even though the Right-Center bloc would have 58 MKs and the Center-Left bloc 19.
Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 7:39 am | Comments » | 190 views

How does Israel’s NIS 80b. stimulus package compare to global efforts?  

For many in the business sector there is little appetite to celebrate at all. Others, looking at measures implemented by other governments, are green with envy.

By Eytan Halon, JPOST


The long-delayed launch of Israel’s “unprecedented” NIS 80 billion financial rescue plan was marked with little fanfare beyond the Finance Ministry and the Prime Minister’s Office.”The program presented today is the largest and widest in scope that the Israeli economy has ever seen,” said Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon in his political swan song, presenting measures valued at 6% of GDP.

What explains the lack of enthusiasm following the presentation of the plan? For many in the business sector, of course, there is little appetite to celebrate at all. Others, looking at measures implemented by other governments, are green with envy. Read more…

April 1, 2020 | 7:29 am | 1 Comment » | 176 views

Israeli sovereignty and Gantz’s bad faith  

Blue and White leader Benny Gantz opposes applying Israeli law to the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria, despite giving US President Trump his word that would support the move. Politicians may survive by lying to voters, but they don’t get very far by lying to US presidents.

By Caroline B. Glick. ISRAEL HAYOM

The coalition talks between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White Party leader Benny Gantz are being held behind closed doors. A lot of contradictory information is being leaked about the issues on the table and about the form of the deal for a unity government being hammered out.

But all the leaks are consistent about one aspect of the discussions.

Gantz and his colleagues oppose applying Israeli law to the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria. This state of affairs is both surprising and disturbing.

It is surprising that Gantz opposes applying Israeli law to the areas, which are home to half a million Israelis because just two months ago, Gantz pledged to support the move. Read more…

March 31, 2020 | 3:12 pm | 4 Comments » | 179 views

In this time of crisis, it’s the private sector coming through  


Trump’s approach to coronavirus is exposing one of the great fault lines in American politics, which is the battle between those who believe in the free market and the private sector versus those who believe that the answer is always the government. This fault line has obviously existed for a long time, but it’s never been exposed in starker terms than now, when there is a crushing weight bearing down on America. So far, the private sector is proving more adaptable, more effective, and more decent.

At John Solomon’s new website, Just The News, Stephanie Gutmann has written a superb article explaining how Trump’s approach to the emergency differs from the approach that any American politician, past or present, has taken, because he’s disempowering, rather than empowering, the government:

In Washington, leaders typically respond to crises by expanding federal power — drafting new laws and regulations, leaning heavily on federal muscle. The COVID-19 pandemic is revealing President Trump to be a different kind of animal, with instincts and alliances that were forged over years in the private sector, where initiatives tend to move faster and finding creative ways to save money is considered a bragging point. (After all, it is usually one’s own money.)
Read more…

March 31, 2020 | 12:45 pm | Comments » | 275 views

Enemies to the Left  

By Alexander G. Markovsky, AMERICAN THINKER

The resurgence of Joe Biden and the inevitable defeat of Bernie Sanders led the pundits to declare that the Democratic Party is rejecting socialism — a development all decent men would celebrate if it were true. Yet, in a supreme irony, the Land of the Free dangerously underestimates or underappreciates the ideological nature of the contemporary Democratic Party. Neither education nor life experience has prepared Americans for grasping the Party’s epochal ideological shift toward the ideology that signifies the total inversion of the Nation’s historical traditions and values.

Every time the Democratic presidential contenders took the stage, whether it was a radical Bernie Sanders or any of the so-called moderates such as Michael Bloomberg, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, or Joe Biden, a frightening sense of déjà vu set in as those downsized American replicas of Leon TrotskyNikolai BukharinClara Zetkin, and Rosa Luxemburg clearly professed their socialist-egalitarian vision and prophetic absolutism.
Read more…

March 31, 2020 | 12:32 pm | Comments » | 274 views

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