NIPPON FALCONS LEAGUE

Our blog's intention is to request the US government to grant us a chance to defend our mother country Japan at the American court of law regarding the resolution "Comfort Women" passed July 30, 07.

3・27火曜日朝のUS経済市況は、、

U.S. Stock Futures Little Changed Before Confidence Data

By Adam Haigh - Mar 27, 2012 6:25 AM CT

U.S. stock futures were little changed, indicating the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index will remain near the highest level since May 2008, before reports on consumer confidence and house prices.

Futures on the S&P 500 expiring in June gained less than 0.1 percent to 1,415.7 as of 7:25 a.m. in New York, having earlier climbed as much as 0.3 percent. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures advanced 8 points to 13,208.

The S&P 500 soared 1.4 percent to 1,416.51 yesterday, the highest level since May 19, 2008, as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said accommodative monetary policy is still needed to spur employment. The gauge has rallied 13 percent this year as economic reports beat estimates.

“Unemployment is better in the United States and that is supportive of growth,” Otto Waser, chief investment officer at Research & Asset Management AG, told Bloomberg Television from Zurich. “On the other hand, it’s not enough growth to raise interest rates so we have the monetary flood gates wide open. This is a combination that is easily to be read positively for markets.”

Traders pushed the cost of bearish S&P 500 (SPX) options to the highest level in almost five years, locking in gains as equities head for the biggest first-quarter rally since 1998.

Contracts to hedge against a 10 percent loss in the U.S. equity gauge cost 1.63 times more than calls betting on a 10 percent gain, according to data on six-month contracts compiled by Bloomberg. The price relationship known as skew rose to 1.64 on March 13, the highest level since May 2007.

Confidence Data

Data from the Conference Board at 10 a.m. in New York may show consumer confidence was little changed this month. The gauge slipped to 70.1 after reaching a one-year high of 70.8 in February, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists.

House prices in 20 U.S. cities probably fell at a slower pace in the year to January, economists said before a report at 9 a.m. The S&P/Case-Shiller index dropped 3.8 percent from January 2011, the smallest decline in three months, the median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg showed.

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said euro-area governments should continue to take “decisive measures” after the central bank’s liquidity provisions helped restore investor confidence. The ECB has injected more than $1.3 trillion into the banking system since December.


(伊勢の解説)

米国住宅の価格は多分小さく下げただろう。一方の消費者の自信は、二月よりも弱いが変化なしに近い。今朝のこれらの報告は、昨日の、バーナンキ連銀議長のスピーチを交換したSP(20)、ダウの高騰(160)に比べて、SP、ダウを押し上げる力にはならないだろう。ほとんど横ばいか、午後には下げるだろう。伊勢

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中国に政変の影が射す

HEARD ON THE STREETMarch 25, 2012, 3:25 p.m. ET

Political Risk Casts New Shadow Over China

By TOM ORLIK

Markets fear a slowdown in China's factories; they should also be concerned about possible government instability.

China's rapid growth, for years the outstanding constant in the global economy, is showing signs of faltering. In the first two months of the year, new real-estate investment showed no growth from a year earlier. Export growth slipped to 6.8% from 14.2% in the fourth quarter of last year.

In the last week, a quarterly survey by the central bank showed demand for loans at its lowest since the financial crisis. The HSBC purchasing managers' index flashed a reading of 48.1 for March, below the 50 mark that signals contraction and down from 49.6 in February. That suggests output in the crucial manufacturing sector is shrinking.

Those are cause for concern. But stimulus from Beijing has so far consisted only of two moves on the reserve-requirement ratio―a low-impact tool used to encourage bank lending. With inflation falling, and public finances strong, there is scope to do more―including lowering interest rates and ramping up public spending. That means it shouldn't be tough for China to keep 2012 growth above 8%.

But the ousting of Chongqing Party chief Bo Xilai more than a week ago is a reminder China has bigger, more intractable problems. It probably means the end of a political maverick who threatened the status quo. But Mr. Bo's rise, marked by populist promises to fight corruption and provide housing for the masses, was possible only because the status quo was failing to deliver. That makes it fragile.

In the wake of Mr. Bo's unseemly exit, China's Internet has come alive with rumors. There is talk―all of it unsubstantiated―of gunshots on the streets of Beijing and a split in the top ranks of the leadership. Regardless of whether the rumors are true or not, China's chattering classes clearly believe they are credible enough to keep them glued to social media for days at a time.

In a transition year for China's leadership, this means the political stability that has underpinned the country's rapid growth can't be taken completely for granted. The risk of an economic hard landing in China may be overstated, but the risk of political instability can't be ignored.
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二月、日本の貿易は黒字だった

Japan Stocks Gain on Surprise Surplus, Rising Oil Prices

By Norie Kuboyama - Mar 21, 2012 9:56 PM CT


Japanese shares rose, with the Nikkei 225 (NKY) Stock Average heading for its biggest gain in a week, after the government reported higher-than-estimated exports and an unexpected trade surplus for February. Rising crude prices boosted energy stocks.

Honda Motor Co. (7267), a carmaker that gets about 80 percent of its revenue overseas, gained 1.6 percent. Japan Drilling Co., an offshore energy contractor, climbed 1.5 percent. Nomura Holdings Inc., Japan’s biggest brokerage, slid 1.3 percent after being linked to an insider-trading case by a person familiar with the matter.

The Nikkei 225 rose 0.4 percent to 10,126.71 at the 11:30 a.m. trading break in Tokyo, set for its biggest advance since March 15. The broader Topix Index gained 0.5 percent to 863.19, with almost three times as many shares advancing as falling. Volume on the gauge was about 19 percent lower than the 30-day average.

“The trade surplus was a surprise,” said Yoshinori Nagano, a senior strategist in Tokyo at Daiwa Asset Management Co., which oversees about $104 billion. “The biggest concern was if exports would really recover.”

The Nikkei 225 has risen 24 percent since its low in November on signs of U.S. economic recovery, progress on tackling Europe’s debt crisis and additional monetary easing by the Bank of Japan. The bull market has boosted the benchmark equity index to within 1.2 percent of recouping losses since last year’s earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis.

Surprise Surplus

Japanese shipments beat estimates in February, leading to a surprise trade surplus of 32.9 billion yen ($395 million), the Finance Ministry reported today. The yen’s decline against the dollar since the Bank of Japan expanded monetary stimulus last month has made the nation’s exporters more competitive.

Honda climbed 1.6 percent to 3,270 yen. Nikon Corp., a camera maker that gets more than 85 percent of its revenue overseas, rose 1.4 percent to 2,447 yen. Nintendo Co., the world’s biggest maker of gaming consoles, jumped 3 percent to 12,970 yen in Osaka.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 0.1 percent today. The gauge slid 0.2 percent in New York yesterday on concern the best first quarter since 1998 has outpaced economic prospects.

Oil-related stocks gained after the U.S. Energy Department said crude inventories unexpectedly dropped 1.16 million barrels last week. Oil for May delivery increased $1.20 to settle at $107.27 a barrel in New York yesterday.

Japan Drilling climbed 1.5 percent to 2,737 yen. Refining company JX Holdings Inc. increased 1.3 percent to 530 yen.

Nomura Falls

Among stocks that declined, Nomura lost 1.3 percent to 391 yen after the company was involved in an insider-trading case connected to energy explorer Inpex Corp. (1605)’s 2010 stock offering, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc., which was also involved, saw its shares rise 2.5 percent after falling 5.1 percent yesterday. Inpex rose 1.8 percent to 573,000 yen.

“Nomura expresses its regret, and will continue to cooperate fully in the investigation,” the Tokyo-based securities firm said in a statement on its website, without explicitly confirming its role in the case.

-- With assistance from Toshiro Hasegawa in Tokyo. Editors: Jim Powell, Nick Gentle.
To contact the reporters on this story: Norie Kuboyama in Tokyo at nkuboyama@bloomberg.net; Toshiro Hasegawa in Tokyo at thasegawa6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net

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チャイナの製造業・五ヶ月連続で縮小する

China Manufacturing May Show Fifth Straight Contraction

By Bloomberg News - Mar 21, 2012 9:49 PM CT

China’s manufacturing may contract for a fifth straight month in March, bolstering the case for Premier Wen Jiabao to add measures to sustain growth even as he prolongs a campaign to cool property prices.

The preliminary 48.1 reading of an index from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics today is a four-month low and compares with a final 49.6 in February. A result above 50 points to an expansion and a number below 50 indicates contraction.

Wen this month pledged pre-emptive fine-tuning of fiscal and monetary policies to support economic growth after increases in gross domestic product slowed throughout 2011. The central bank may cut interest rates and banks’ reserve requirements to speed up expansion, according to Nomura Holdings Inc.

“Economic growth is set to slow further this quarter to about 8 percent,” Ding Shuang, a Hong Kong-based economist at Citigroup Inc., said before today’s release. “The government should accelerate earmarking this year’s fiscal funding to boost investment and ease lending curbs,” including a reserve-ratio cut this month that would be the third since November, Ding said.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index of stocks pared gains following the report, rising 0.4 percent at 11:45 a.m. Tokyo time after climbing as much as 0.8 percent.

The period of contraction for the index is the longest since the global financial crisis three years ago when the index stayed below 50 for eight months ending in March 2009.

400 Companies

The preliminary reading, called the Flash PMI, is from 85 percent to 90 percent of responses to a survey of more than 400 companies. A separate PMI from China’s logistics federation and the National Bureau of Statistics, which has a different sample and methodology, showed an expansion for a third month in February.

Wen, in his annual state-of-the-nation address this month, pledged to complete more affordable homes and ensure funding for key investment projects while extending his campaign to cool property prices.

China’s economic growth slowed throughout last year to 8.9 percent in the fourth quarter, prompting the central bank to add liquidity via open-market operations and reduce banks’ reserve requirements twice since November.

Confidence in China’s economy is recovering, according to two central bank surveys of bankers and company executives released this week. Respondents’ expectations improved for market demand and export orders, while more bankers said monetary policy will tend to be looser next quarter, the central bank said.

Better Shape

The global economy is in better shape than three months ago even as vulnerabilities still need to be addressed, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said this week at a conference in New Delhi. At the same time, Lagarde said later at a press briefing that it shouldn’t be assumed the period of crisis is over.

Improving prospects for China’s exports have prompted economists from Nomura Holdings Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG to raise their 2012 growth forecasts. Nomura increased its estimate to 8.2 percent from 7.9 percent and Deutsche Bank boosted its projection to 8.6 percent from 8.3 percent.

Wen set a 7.5 percent growth target for 2012, lower than the 8 percent annual goal in place since 2005, as he aims to tilt the nation’s growth toward consumption from capital spending and exports.

Sany Group Co. (SANYIZ), owner of China’s biggest machinery maker, may see sales growth slow by about half to 25 percent this year as the economy decelerates, Xiang Wenbo, a board member and president of the company’s Shanghai-listed unit, said in Beijing March 10.

“The industry’s extraordinary growth, brought about by the government’s stimulus package, is not sustainable,” said Xiang, whose company is based in Changsha, Hunan province. “Still, the Chinese market will be the best in the world,” he said.

To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Li Yanping in Beijing at yli16@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at ppanckhurst@bloomberg.net

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パラセル岩礁をめぐる中越紛争が熱くなっている

Vietnam Says Cnooc’s South China Sea Bids Violate Territory

By Bloomberg News - Mar 15, 2012 11:32 PM CT

Cnooc Ltd. (883)’s moves to develop oil- and gas-rich northern areas of the South China Sea violates Vietnam’s sovereignty, the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry said.

China’s biggest offshore oil explorer opened bids to foreign companies last year for 19 blocks near the disputed Paracel Islands, according to its website. Vietnam singled out Block 65/24, which it said sits one nautical mile from one of the Paracels, in denouncing a range of Chinese actions that violate its territory.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Luong Thanh Nghi asked China to “cease all activities that violate Vietnam’s sovereignty” and make a “substantive contribution to maintaining peace and stability” in the South China Sea, according to a statement posted on the ministry’s website yesterday.

China’s neighbors have rejected its map of the South China Sea as a basis for joint oil and gas development, leading to clashes in one of the world’s busiest sea corridors. Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Talisman Energy Inc. and Forum Energy Plc are among companies that have signed deals to explore disputed parts of the sea.

“Vietnam and China may get aggressive about these claims as they have been in the past,” said Tony Regan, a consultant with Singapore-based Tri-Zen International Ltd. who was previously an executive with Royal Dutch Shell Plc in the liquefied-natural-gas business. “I don’t think many significant players would want to take that risk unless it’s very clear that the two governments were talking and there’s a reasonable expectation of the dispute being resolved.”

‘Attractive’ Upstream Locations
Block 65/24 is the southernmost offshore area put out for bid by China last year in an offering that includes sections south of Hong Kong. Water levels in the block, covering an area about twice as big as the U.S. state of Delaware, are as deep as two kilometers (1.2 miles), according to CNOOC’s website.

“It is uncertain whether acreage like Block 65/24 and Block 55/03 are located beyond the Vietnam territorial claim line,” IHS Global Insight said in a report last year. “If so contractors risk becoming embroiled in political tension between the two countries, which are both emerging as attractive upstream investment locations.”

China ousted Vietnam from the 30 islets and reefs that comprise the Paracels in a 1974 battle in which 71 soldiers were killed. The countries also dispute the Spratly Islands further to the south, an area near where fellow claimant the Philippines has opened tenders on offshore exploration blocks.

Oil reserves in the South China Sea may total as much as 213 billion barrels, according to Chinese studies cited in 2008 by the U.S. Energy Information Agency.

Vietnam also protested China’s live-fire drill this month near the Paracels and plans to expand tourism in the area, according to the ministry’s statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Daniel Ten Kate in Bangkok at dtenkate@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Peter Hirschberg at phirschberg@bloomberg.net

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広州賃貸不動産ブーム

China Trade Hub Guangzhou Booms as New Area Rises From Dirt

By Kelvin Wong - Mar 15, 2012 1:32 AM CT


Nelson Ching/Bloomberg
A restaurant overlooking high rise apartment buildings in Guangzhou, China.

Guangzhou, a trading hub for China since the Ming Dynasty in the 16th century, is in the midst of the biggest commercial real estate boom in its history.

Developers including Guangzhou R&F Properties Co. (2777) and Poly Real Estate Group Co. (600048) plan to add more than 1.7 million square meters (18.3 million square feet) of prime office space to the city this year -- enough for about 120,000 workers. Almost 90 percent of the new space will be built in Zhujiang Xincheng, a zone twice the size of the City of London that Guangzhou’s government earmarked as its new central business district almost a decade ago, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc.

People discuss baby strollers in the Ningbo Shenma Childrens Products Co. Ltd. booth during the 110th China Import and Export Fair in Guangzhou. Guangzhou, named Canton by Portuguese traders in the 16th century, hosts the China Import and Export Fair, or Canton Fair, in April every year.

Guangzhou, with a population of more than 12 million, is China’s third-largest city behind Shanghai and Beijing and is the capital of the Guangdong province. Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg

“Back in 2004, out there it was all just dirt,” said Adrian Chan, assistant to the chairman at Guangzhou R&F, which has completed five office projects in the area since then, including the 160,000-square-meter, 54-story R&F Center, where the interview took place. “Today, it turns out to be a good winner.”

Guangzhou R&F and its rivals will be seeking to fill the space at a time of slowing economic growth, with the nation’s expansion target for 2012 this month set at 7.5 percent, down from an 8 percent goal in place since 2005. China last week reported its biggest trade deficit in at least 22 years, the weakest January-February factory-production gain since 2009, and retail sales that trailed the median of economist estimates.

The new developments may push the prime office vacancy rate in the city to above 20 percent by 2015, from 12 percent now, according to Chicago-based Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.
“With that amount of new supply coming in, I don’t care how fast the absorption rate is, it will pull up vacancy,” said Alvin Lau, managing director for Southern China at CBRE Group Inc. “And if there isn’t enough demand, then rents will fall, though I don’t think there’ll be a crash.”

Opium Trade

Guangzhou, named Canton by Portuguese traders in the 16th century, hosts the China Import and Export Fair, or Canton Fair, in April every year. In the 19th century, British traders imported opium into China through the city until the Chinese government sought to ban it, triggering the Opium War that resulted in the ceding of Hong Kong.
Guangzhou’s government in 2003 decided to turn the Zhujiang Xincheng district into a financial center rivaling Shanghai and Shenzhen. That was followed two years later by a 200 billion yuan ($32 billion) plan to upgrade the whole city’s infrastructure.

GM, Tesco

While finance firms didn’t respond, export and domestic- industrial companies have. The 6.6 square kilometer-district features the regional headquarters of China Mobile Ltd., the world’s biggest phone carrier by users, General Motors Co., the largest foreign automaker in China, and Tesco Plc, the U.K.’s biggest retailer.

“It was never going to work as Guangzhou doesn’t even have a capital market,” said Eric Lam, managing director for Southern China at property adviser Colliers International. “The ones who ended up here are the South China or regional headquarters of companies, not banks. At the end it was the market that directed the district’s positioning.”
Even with the new office supply, Lam said rents in top tier buildings will rise because of “very strong” demand.

Average monthly rent at Zhujiang Xincheng was 279 yuan per square meter in the fourth quarter, compared with 255 yuan a square meter at Tianhe, Guangzhou’s former central business district, New York-based Cushman said. That compares with 507 yuan in Beijing and 414 yuan in Shanghai.

Trading Hub

China will overtake the U.S. as the world’s biggest trading nation by 2016 as intra-Asia commerce and rising demand from emerging markets boosts shipments, according to a report from HSBC Holdings Plc last month.

“The government has always wanted to create a hub for trade operators,” said Donald Choi, managing director of Hong Kong-based Nan Fung Development Ltd., which is spending 6 billion yuan building commercial projects in the city. “So everything here, the excellent infrastructure, the policies, are all being backed by the government.”

Zhujiang Xincheng, which means Pearl River New Town in Mandarin, is home to the Guangzhou Opera House, the biggest performing center in Southern China, and the 1,969-foot Canton Tower, an observation tower that was the world’s tallest when it was completed in 2010.
Guangzhou, with a population of more than 12 million, is China’s third-largest city behind Shanghai and Beijing and is the capital of the Guangdong province. Nearby Foshan was identified by the World Health Organization as the probable source of outbreak of the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome epidemic, or SARS.

Recovery Project

While its economy was recovering from that outbreak, Guangzhou’s government began awarding land in Zhujiang Xincheng to developers including Guangzhou R&F, with the aim of building a financial hub that could replace the city’s existing downtown area of Tianhe.
To encourage investment from developers, Guangzhou, a two- hour train ride north of Hong Kong, went on to spend about 200 billion yuan to build roads and subways in Zhujiang Xincheng and the city. That includes a nine-stop, 4-kilometer long automated people mover similar to the light-rail system in Singapore.

“If some guys say they’re going to put in $10 and ask you to put in only $2, that’s a good bargain,” said Guangzhou R&F’s Chan. “They were drilling all these subways and roads and they ask whether you want to be part of this. And we said OK, though back then it was a pretty big risk to take.”

Guangzhou R&F’s shares have risen 61 percent in Hong Kong this year, while Poly Real Estate has advanced 8 percent in Shanghai.

Zhujiang Xincheng

Investment in real estate in Guangzhou jumped about 40 percent last year, according to estimates by Cushman. Guangzhou’s gross domestic product grew 11 percent in 2011 to 1.24 trillion yuan, ranking it third among all Chinese cities, according to the city government’s website.

Guangzhou heeded central government calls in late 2010 to restrict foreigners from buying homes and offices in the city. It said this month the curbs on foreigners purchasing retail real estate remained in place, according to Zhai Zhongqi, a Centaline Property Agency Ltd. analyst based in the city.

Almost 80 percent of the 2.8 million square meters of prime office space already under construction in Guangzhou is at Zhujiang Xincheng, Cushman said. The district had prime office space of about 1.2 million square meters at the end of 2011, over 50 percent more than the Tianhe district.

Beijing-Style Boom

“If domestic companies’ expansion continues, rental growth will probably be stable over the next few years,” said Marcos Chan, head of research for Greater Pearl River Delta at Jones Lang, the world’s second-biggest commercial broker by market value. “We’re talking about a market that hasn’t seen anything like this before. So when the new buildings are all in place, we may see a boom like what happened in Beijing last year.”

Beijing’s central business district’s prime office rent surged 73 percent in 2011 to be Asia’s third most-expensive office market after Hong Kong and Tokyo, according to Cushman.

Government-led commercial districts in some of China’s second-tier cities, including Chengdu and Hangzhou, “may face a market supply glut” because of over-building fueled by developers wanting to diversify from residential development, according to Cushman.

Pazhou District

The expectation of growing demand for office space in Zhujiang Xincheng has prompted the government to plan the development of another business district in Guangzhou’s Pazhou, the district where the venue of the Canton Fair is. Companies including Nan Fung are building at least 4.5 million square meters of commercial space there in addition to the 335,000 square meters already there.

“Guangzhou’s market for convention and exhibition is still developing,” said Nan Fung’s Choi. “It’s the center of trading of southern China and we’re very confident in its future.”

The company, one of Hong Kong’s two biggest closely held builders, is investing at least HK$6 billion ($773 million) building a hotel, exhibition venue, and an office building in the distrいct・
“The next five years in Pazhou will be like Zhujiang Xincheng five years ago,” said Colliers’ Lam. “At the moment there’ll still land available, but that’ll change fast.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Kelvin Wong in Hong Kong at kwong40@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andreea Papuc at apapuc1@bloomberg.net

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チャイナへの外国投資は減った

China’s Foreign Direct Investment Falls for Fourth Month

By Bloomberg News - Mar 14, 2012 9:01 PM CT


Foreign direct investment in China fell for a fourth straight month in February as companies reined in spending amid a slowdown in the world’s second-biggest economy and the prolonged European debt crisis.

Investment declined 0.9 percent to $7.73 billion last month from a year earlier, the Ministry of Commerce said in a statement today, following a 0.3 percent drop in January. Overseas spending in the first two months decreased 0.6 percent to $17.7 billion.


U.S. companies are becoming less confident in business prospects in China amid rising costs and difficulties hiring and retaining skilled labor. Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg


March 15 (Bloomberg) -- Mike Werner, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., talks about China's economy, central bank monetary policy and banking industry. China is easing restrictions on lending capacity at three of the nation’s four biggest banks after new loans dropped to a four-year low, officials at the banks with knowledge of the matter said. Werner speaks with Rishaad Salamat on Bloomberg Television's "On the Move Asia." (Source: Bloomberg)
.
The outlook for foreign investment in China is “grim,” ministry spokesman Shen Danyang said last month, citing “slack” external demand, rising operating costs and funding difficulties faced by some companies. Spending by overseas businesses, which climbed to a record $116 billion last year, may stabilize at around $100 billion, according to ING Financial Markets.

“Investors are cautious now due to the sluggish global recovery,” Pan Xiangdong, a Beijing-based economist with China Galaxy Securities Co., said before the release. At the same time, “China will continue to attract foreign investment because it has an expanding middle class that offers attractive opportunities.”

U.S. companies are becoming less confident in business prospects in China amid rising costs and difficulties hiring and retaining skilled labor, according to a survey from the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai released last month. Businesses are also finding it harder to generate higher profitability, it said.

At the same time, 77 percent of respondents said they intended to boost spending, compared with 72 percent in 2011, the chamber said.

The nation will stop encouraging foreign investment in industries including automobile manufacturing while opening up other markets such as medical services, the commerce ministry and the National Development and Reform Commission, the top economic planning agency, said in December.

European Union Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht last month called on China to open its markets more to foreign investors, especially in areas dominated by state-owned companies.

--Zheng Lifei. Editor: Nerys Avery, Scott Lanman

To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Zheng Lifei in Beijing at lzheng32@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at ppanckhurst@bloomberg.net
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チャイナの経済はどすんと着陸する途中だ



Chinese Economy Already in ‘Hard Landing,’ JPMorgan’s Mowat Says

By Weiyi Lim - Mar 14, 2012 8:37 PM CT
.

China’s economy is already in a so- called “hard landing,” according to Adrian Mowat, JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s chief Asian and emerging-market strategist.

“If you look at the Chinese data, you should stop debating about a hard landing,” Mowat, who is based in Hong Kong, said at a conference in Singapore yesterday. “China is in a hard landing. Car sales are down, cement production is down, steel production is down, construction stocks are down. It’s not a debate anymore, it’s a fact.” His team was a runner-up for best Asian equity strategists in a 2011 Institutional Investor magazine.


Wen Jiabao, China's premier, said home prices are still far from reasonable levels. Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg


March 14 (Bloomberg) -- Lu Ting, a Hong Kong-based economist at Bank of America Corp., talks about the outlook for China's economic growth and government leadership change. Lu speaks with Rishaad Salamat on Bloomberg Television's "On the Move Asia." (Source: Bloomberg)
.
The Shanghai Composite Index fell 2.6 percent yesterday, the most since Nov. 30, after Premier Wen Jiabao said home prices are still “far from a reasonable level.” His comments fueled concern the government will maintain restrictions on the property market for an extended period even as the curbs threaten to slow economic growth.

Wen announced at the beginning of a national lawmakers’ congress on March 5 an economic growth target of 7.5 percent for this year, down from 8 percent over the past seven years. Data last week showed China’s factory output in the first two months of the year rose the least since 2009, while retail sales increased less than economists predicted and inflation eased to the slowest pace in 20 months.

Mowat said in May the risk of a hard landing was building in China as fixed-asset investment in real estate had increased even as property demand remained weak. That meant residential inventories will increase and lead to a contraction in construction activity, the strategist said in a May 17 interview.

Excessive Decline

“One should be concerned about what’s happening in the China property market,” Mowat said at yesterday’s conference. “People are too complacent that the government can turn what’s going on in this market.”

The slump in Chinese stocks to Wen’s speech yesterday was “overdone” as his comments on property were only a reiteration and don’t reflect consensus in the government, Jason Todd, global head of equity strategy at Religare Capital Markets Ltd., wrote in a report. The Shanghai Composite (SHCOMP) gained 0.2 percent as of 9:32 a.m. local time today.

Wen, set to leave office next year after a decade in power, also said yesterday his nation must adopt political change to support an economic transformation that has produced rapid development at the cost of a widening wealth gap.

‘Vastly Overblown’

Gary Shilling, president of A. Gary Shilling & Co., a Springfield, New Jersey-based consultancy firm, said on Feb. 2 that China’s economy is headed for a “hard landing” this year as weaker demand overseas chokes off exports. Shilling, who correctly forecast the U.S. recession that began in December 2007, defines a hard landing as a growth rate below 6 percent.

Shilling and Mowat’s views are in contrast with Yale University Professor Stephen Roach, a former non-executive chairman for Morgan Stanley in Asia, who said on March 8 that concerns China will enter a hard landing are “vastly overblown.”

“I don’t think the banking system will collapse and the property bubble will burst,” Roach said at a conference in Shanghai. “These are all exaggerations.”

China is easing restrictions on lending capacity at three of the nation’s four biggest banks after new loans dropped to a four-year low, officials at the banks with knowledge of the matter said. The government’s two-year effort to control the property market helped spur a 25 percent drop in home sales in the first two months of the year after surging 26 percent in January and February of 2011.

“What you can look forward to is to see a pickup in property demand that will clear up the inventory; that doesn’t appear likely,” Mowat said in an interview after the conference yesterday. “I don’t see any evidence of a policy move that will cause the economy to reaccelerate.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Weiyi Lim in Singapore at wlim26@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at dboey@bloomberg.net


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ウラン鉱山株が上昇

Uranium Stocks Surge as Emerging Markets Drive Demand

Five Star Equities Provides Stock Research on Uranerz Energy & Ur-Energy
March 09, 2012: 08:20 AM ET


Despite a recent hit, uranium stocks have been some of the strongest performers on Wall Street. The Global X Uranium ETF (URA) is up in excess of 20 percent this year as the growth outlook of Nuclear Energy appears strong after falling hard last year on Japan's nuclear disaster. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Uranium industry and provides equity research on Uranerz Energy Corporation (NYSE Amex: URZ) (TSX: URZ) and Ur-Energy Inc. (NYSE Amex: URG) (TSX: URE). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

www.fivestarequities.com/URZ

www.fivestarequities.com/URG

A recent conference in New Delhi at the International Nuclear Symposium reaffirmed India's commitment to nuclear energy. Indian Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Srikumar Banerjee said, "Without nuclear energy, the economic growth of the country would be slowed down." Responding to concerns following Japan's tragic nuclear disaster last year, Banerjee said, "there is no point in avoiding the questions that have come up in people's minds -- we need to address them head-on... It is important for the public to understand India cannot renounce nuclear power."

India has 20 nuclear power plants in operation with an installed capacity of 4,780 megawatts, and another seven reactors under construction.

Five Star Equities releases regular market updates on the uranium industry so investors can stay ahead of the crowd and make the best investment decisions to maximize their returns. Take a few minutes to register with us free at www.fivestarequities.com and get exclusive access to our numerous stock reports and industry newsletters.

In more developed markets, the U.K and France signed a deal to strengthen co-operation in the development of civil nuclear energy. Meanwhile, safety regulators in the U.S. gave approval for the construction of two nuclear power reactors in Georgia.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the "AP1000" being built in Georgia is specifically designed with a "passive" cooling system that relies on natural convection currents rather than electric pumps so the reactors can cool themselves for several days while waiting for power to be restored.

Five Star Equities provides Market Research focused on equities that offer growth opportunities, value, and strong potential return. We strive to provide the most up-to-date market activities. We constantly create research reports and newsletters for our members. Five Star Equities has not been compensated by any of the above-mentioned companies. We act as an independent research portal and are aware that all investment entails inherent risks. Please view the full disclaimer at:
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日本は債務国になる

Japan Nuclear Shutdowns Boost Current Account Deficit to Record $5 Billion
By Andy Sharp and Mayumi Otsuma - Mar 7, 2012 7:36 PM CT

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Japan’s increased reliance on imported energy in the wake of the nation’s nuclear disaster a year ago propelled a record current-account deficit that threatens to restrain a rebound in the nation’s economy.
The shortfall was 437.3 billion yen ($5.4 billion) in January, the finance ministry said in Tokyo. Energy imports led the gap, highlighting the challenge for manufacturers that ended 2011 in better shape than previously estimated -- separate data today showed the economy shrank less in the fourth quarter than the government initially calculated.
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Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles, including the Prius C, center left, bound for export, sit in a lot at the port of Sendai in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture, Japan. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg
The yen slipped after the current-account data underscored concern that a deepening trade gap will erode Japan’s status as the world’s largest creditor nation. With 52 of 54 nuclear reactors shut in the aftermath of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima plant, the nation is at risk of summer power shortages that disrupt production and increase costs for manufacturers.
“Fuel imports -- for generating electricity -- will remain high for as long as nuclear power is excluded from Japan’s energy mix,’” David Rea, an economist at Capital Economics Ltd. in London, said before today’s data. At the same time, seasonal factors were “an important cause” of the temporary deficit, he said.
The yen traded at 81.27 per dollar as of 10:09 a.m. in Tokyo, down 0.2 percent.
Disaster’s Toll
Gross domestic product shrank an annualized 0.7 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31, the Cabinet Office said, compared with a preliminary estimate of a 2.3 percent contraction. Higher-than-estimated capital spending was the biggest factor in the revision, which compared with a median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of a 0.6 percent contraction.
The quake last year, Japan’s strongest on record with a magnitude of 9, and the resulting tsunami destroyed or damaged more than 1 million houses and is estimated by the government to have caused 16.9 trillion yen of damage. More than 19,000 people were left dead or missing.
The economy may be poised to return to growth this quarter as reconstruction work kicks in and after monetary easing by the central bank weakened the yen, aiding exporters such as Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) and Sony Corp. (6758)
Deficit Nation
Japan’s most recent previous deficit in the current account was a 133 billion yen shortfall in January 2009, which was also the record before today’s figure. While the nation’s income surplus prevents any immediate swing to becoming a deficit nation, JPMorgan Securities Japan forecasts that change may come in 2015, while BNP Paribas SA (BNP) estimates about 2020.
“When this happens the government will need to look to overseas creditors to finance its fiscal borrowing needs,” Rea said. The higher returns that international investors would require, combined with the existing debt burden, could lead to public finances reaching “crisis point,” he said.
Japan risks going down the same road as Greece as the cost of funding the world’s largest public debt rises in years ahead, Takatoshi Ito, a former senior Ministry of Finance official, said in a March 5 interview in Tokyo.
When local investors reach their limit for funding the nation’s bonds, the Bank of Japan “will either have to monetize the debt or we will need foreigners to purchase bonds and yields will jump,” said Ito, who was deputy vice finance minister from 1999 to 2001. “That will be the start of Japan becoming Greece.”
To contact the reporters on this story: Andy Sharp in Tokyo at asharp5@bloomberg.net; Mayumi Otsuma in Tokyo at motsuma@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at ppanckhurst@bloomberg.net
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東証株価上昇、日本経済はそれほど悪くはない

Japanese Stocks Advance on Rise in U.S. Hiring, Greek Debt Deal Optimism

By Norie Kuboyama and Satoshi Kawano - Mar 7, 2012 7:10 PM CT


Japanese stocks rose for the first time in four days after U.S. companies increased hiring and more investors signed on to a Greek debt swap needed to secure a bailout. Shares also gained as a report showed Japan’s economy contracted less than initially estimated.
Nissan Motor Co. (7201), a Japanese carmaker that gets about 80 percent of its revenue overseas, climbed 1.6 percent after the yen weakened. Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc., Japan’s second-biggest publicly traded bank, gained 1.1 percent. Mitsubishi Corp. (8058), Japan’s top commodities trader by revenue, gained 2.3 percent after oil and copper prices rose.

“Investors are feeling less pessimistic about the global economy,” said Seiichiro Iwamoto, who helps oversee about $35 billion at Mizuho Asset Management Co. in Tokyo. “Now that the yen is starting to ease, manufacturers who had really been hurt are coming back.”
The Nikkei 225 Stock Average (NKY) rose 1 percent to 9,670.71 as of 9:30 a.m. in Tokyo. The broader Topix (TPX) Index climbed 1.1 percent to 831.34, with more than three times as many shares advancing as falling. Volume on the gauge was about 10 percent higher than the 100-day average.

Japan GDP

Japan’s economy contracted less than the government’s initial estimate last quarter on rising reconstruction demand after last year’s record earthquake. Gross domestic product shrank an annualized 0.7 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31, the Cabinet Office said in Tokyo today, compared with a preliminary estimate of a 2.3 percent contraction.
Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPXL1) slid 0.1 percent today. The gauge advanced 0.7 percent in New York yesterday, rebounding from its biggest drop of the year, after ADP Employer Services reported U.S. companies added more jobs than expected in February.

Optimism about Greece’s debt swap drove stocks higher. Investors holding at least 58 percent of the Greek bonds eligible for the nation’s debt swap have so far indicated they’ll participate, putting the country on the verge of the biggest sovereign restructuring in history.

The yen depreciated against the euro to 106.92 from 106.12 at the close of stock trading yesterday. Japan’s currency also weakened against the dollar today, falling as low as 81.36 from 80.73. A weaker yen boosts the value of overseas income at Japanese companies when repatriated.

Crude oil for April delivery rose 1.4 percent to settle at $106.16 a barrel yesterday in New York. Copper futures for May delivery rebounded from a two-week low.

The Topix (TPX) has jumped 14 percent this year, rebounding from last year’s 19 percent drop, amid signs the U.S. economy is improving and Europe is containing its debt crisis.

The value of stocks listed on the index has risen to 1.02 times book value, up from 0.88 in December, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. A number below 1 means companies can be bought for less than value of their assets.

To contact the reporters on this story: Norie Kuboyama in Tokyo at nkuboyama@bloomberg.net; Satoshi Kawano in Tokyo at skawano1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net
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オバマ・ネタンヤフ会談、どっちもどっち

Netanyahu Vows to Prevent Iran From Gaining Atomic Bomb After Obama Talks


By Jonathan Ferziger - Mar 5, 2012 10:09 PM CT

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, capping a day he started in White House talks with President Barack Obama, told Jewish leaders he won’t allow his nation to be threatened by an Iranian nuclear bomb.

Iran would be more reckless and dangerous with a nuclear weapon, Netanyahu said tonight in a speech in Washington to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. He said he wouldn’t let Israel live in the “shadow of annihilation.”

While Netanyahu praised Obama for leading a campaign to toughen economic sanctions on Iran, he said such actions haven’t led Iran to curtail its nuclear program and Israel must be able to defend itself against a threat to its existence.

“None of us can afford to wait much longer,” Netanyahu said.

In the meeting with Netanyahu, Obama said “there is still a window” for a diplomatic solution to the confrontation with Iran. He said the U.S. has a “rock solid” commitment to Israel’s security and that “all options” are available to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.

Speaking to Aipac yesterday, Obama said sanctions need more time to work. He said “loose talk of war” is driving up the price of Iranian oil and jeopardizing U.S. and Israeli security.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv at jferziger@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Komarow at skomarow1@bloomberg.net
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“虚勢を張っているわけじゃない”とオバマ

Obama to Iran and Israel: 'As President of the United States, I Don't Bluff'

MAR 2 2012, 7:00 AM ET 1259

Dismissing a strategy of "containment," the president tells me it's "unacceptable" for the Islamic Republic to have a nuclear weapon.

At the White House on Monday, President Obama will seek to persuade the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to postpone whatever plans he may have to bomb Iran's nuclear facilities in the coming months. Obama will argue that under his leadership, the United States "has Israel's back," and that he will order the U.S. military to destroy Iran's nuclear program if economic sanctions fail to compel Tehran to shelve its nuclear ambitions.

In the most extensive interview he has given about the looming Iran crisis, Obama told me earlier this week that both Iran and Israel should take seriously the possibility of American action against Iran's nuclear facilities. "I think that the Israeli government recognizes that, as president of the United States, I don't bluff." He went on, "I also don't, as a matter of sound policy, go around advertising exactly what our intentions are. But I think both the Iranian and the Israeli governments recognize that when the United States says it is unacceptable for Iran to have a nuclear weapon, we mean what we say."

"When I say this is in the U.S. interest, I'm not saying this is something we'd like to solve. I'm saying this is something we have to solve." The 45-minute Oval Office conversation took place less than a week before the president was scheduled to address the annual convention of AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobbying group, and then meet, the next day, with Prime Minister Netanyahu at the White House. In the interview, Obama stated specifically that "all options are on the table," and that the final option is the "military component." But the president also said that sanctions organized by his administration have put Iran in a "world of hurt," and that economic duress might soon force the regime in Tehran to rethink its efforts to pursue a nuclear-weapons program.

"Without in any way being under an illusion about Iranian intentions, without in any way being naive about the nature of that regime, they are self-interested," Obama said. "It is possible for them to make a strategic calculation that, at minimum, pushes much further to the right whatever potential breakout capacity they may have, and that may turn out to to be the best decision for Israel's security."

The president also said that Tehran's nuclear program would represent a "profound" national-security threat to the United States even if Israel were not a target of Iran's violent rhetoric, and he dismissed the argument that the United States could successfully contain a nuclear Iran.

"You're talking about the most volatile region in the world," he said. "It will not be tolerable to a number of states in that region for Iran to have a nuclear weapon and them not to have a nuclear weapon. Iran is known to sponsor terrorist organizations, so the threat of proliferation becomes that much more severe." He went on to say, "The dangers of an Iran getting nuclear weapons that then leads to a free-for-all in the Middle East is something that I think would be very dangerous for the world."

The president was most animated when talking about the chaotic arms race he fears would break out if Iran acquired a nuclear weapon, and he seemed most frustrated when talking about what he sees as a deliberate campaign by Republicans to convince American Jews that he is anti-Israel. "Every single commitment I have made to the state of Israel and its security, I have kept," he told me. "Why is it that despite me never failing to support Israel on every single problem that they've had over the last three years, that there are still questions about that?"

Though he struck a consistently pro-Israel posture during the interview, Obama went to great lengths to caution Israel that a premature strike might inadvertently help Iran: "At a time when there is not a lot of sympathy for Iran and its only real ally, [Syria,] is on the ropes, do we want a distraction in which suddenly Iran can portray itself as a victim?"

He also said he would try to convince Netanyahu that the only way to bring about a permanent end to a country's nuclear program is to convince the country in question that nuclear weapons are not in its best interest. "Our argument is going to be that it is important for us to see if we can solve this thing permanently, as opposed to temporarily," he said, "and the only way historically that a country has ultimately decided not to get nuclear weapons without constant military intervention has been when they themselves take [nuclear weapons] off the table. That's what happened in Libya, that's what happened in South Africa."

And though broadly sympathetic to Netanyahu's often-stated fear that Iran's nuclear program represents a Holocaust-scale threat to the Jewish state, and the Jewish people, Obama suggested strongly that historical fears cannot be the sole basis for precipitous action: "The prime minister is head of a modern state that is mindful of the profound costs of any military action, and in our consultations with the Israeli government, I think they take those costs, and potential unintended consequences, very seriously."

But when I asked the president if he thought Israel could damage its reputation among Americans with an attack on Iran -- an attack that could provoke Iranian retaliation against American targets, and could cause massive economic disruption -- he said, "I think we in the United States instinctively sympathize with Israel." President Obama also shared fascinating insights about his sometimes tension-filled relationship with Netanyahu -- and spoke at length about Syria -- but for that, you'll have to read the entire interview. Here is a transcript of our conversation:

JEFFREY GOLDBERG: From what we understand, Prime Minister Netanyahu is going to ask you for some specific enunciations of red lines, for specific promises related to the Iranian nuclear program. What is your message to the prime minister going to be? What do you want to get across to him?

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: First of all, it's important to say that I don't know exactly what the prime minister is going to be coming with. We haven't gotten any indication that there is some sharp "ask" that is going to be presented. Both the United States and Israel have been in constant consultation about a very difficult issue, and that is the prospect of Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon. This is something that has been one of my top five foreign-policy concerns since I came into office.

We, immediately upon taking over, mapped out a strategy that said we are going to mobilize the international community around this issue and isolate Iran to send a clear message to them that there is a path they can follow that allows them to rejoin the community of nations, but if they refused to follow that path, that there would be an escalating series of consequences.

Three years later, we can look back and say we have been successful beyond most people's expectations. When we came in, Iran was united and on the move, and the world was divided about how to address this issue. Today, the world is as united as we've ever seen it around the need for Iran to take a different path on its nuclear program, and Iran is isolated and feeling the severe effects of the multiple sanctions that have been placed on it.

At the same time, we understand that the bottom line is: Does the problem get solved? And I think that Israel, understandably, has a profound interest not just in good intentions but in actual results. And in the conversations I've had over the course of three years, and over the course of the last three months and three weeks, what I've emphasized is that preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon isn't just in the interest of Israel, it is profoundly in the security interests of the United States, and that when I say we're not taking any option off the table, we mean it. We are going to continue to apply pressure until Iran takes a different course.

GOLDBERG: Go back to this language, 'All options on the table.' You've probably said it 50 or 100 times. And a lot of people believe it, but the two main intended audiences, the supreme leader of Iran and the prime minister of Israel, you could argue, don't entirely trust this. The impression we get is that the Israeli government thinks this is a vague expression that's been used for so many years. Is there some ramping-up of the rhetoric you're going to give them?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think the Israeli people understand it, I think the American people understand it, and I think the Iranians understand it. It means a political component that involves isolating Iran; it means an economic component that involves unprecedented and crippling sanctions; it means a diplomatic component in which we have been able to strengthen the coalition that presents Iran with various options through the P-5 plus 1 and ensures that the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] is robust in evaluating Iran's military program; and it includes a military component. And I think people understand that.

I think that the Israeli government recognizes that, as president of the United States, I don't bluff. I also don't, as a matter of sound policy, go around advertising exactly what our intentions are. But I think both the Iranian and the Israeli governments recognize that when the United States says it is unacceptable for Iran to have a nuclear weapon, we mean what we say. Let me describe very specifically why this is important to us.

In addition to the profound threat that it poses to Israel, one of our strongest allies in the world; in addition to the outrageous language that has been directed toward Israel by the leaders of the Iranian government -- if Iran gets a nuclear weapon, this would run completely contrary to my policies of nonproliferation. The risks of an Iranian nuclear weapon falling into the hands of terrorist organizations are profound. It is almost certain that other players in the region would feel it necessary to get their own nuclear weapons. So now you have the prospect of a nuclear arms race in the most volatile region in the world, one that is rife with unstable governments and sectarian tensions. And it would also provide Iran the additional capability to sponsor and protect its proxies in carrying out terrorist attacks, because they are less fearful of retaliation.

GOLDBERG: What would your position be if Israel weren't in this picture?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: It would still be a profound national-security interest of the United States to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.

GOLDBERG: Why, then, is this issue so often seen as binary, always defined as Israel versus Iran?

"Why is it that despite me never failing to support Israel on every single problem that they've had over the last three years, that there are still questions about that?"PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think it has to do with a legitimate concern on the part of Israel that they are a small country in a tough neighborhood, and as a consequence, even though the U.S. and Israel very much share assessments of how quickly Iran could obtain breakout capacity, and even though there is constant consultation and intelligence coordination around that question, Israel feels more vulnerable. And I think the prime minister and the defense minister, [Ehud Barak,] feel a profound, historic obligation not to put Israel in a position where it cannot act decisively and unilaterally to protect the state of Israel. I understand those concerns, and as a consequence, I think it's not surprising that the way it gets framed, at least in this country, where the vast majority of people are profoundly sympathetic to Israel's plight and potential vulnerabilities -- that articles and stories get framed in terms of Israel's potential vulnerability.

But I want to make clear that when we travel around the world and make presentations about this issue, that's not how we frame it. We frame it as: this is something in the national-security interests of the United States and in the interests of the world community. And I assure you that Europe would not have gone forward with sanctions on Iranian oil imports -- which are very difficult for them to carry out, because they get a lot of oil from Iran -- had it not been for their understanding that it is in the world's interest, to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. China would not have abided by the existing sanctions coming out of the National Security Council, and other countries around the world would not have unified around those sanctions, had it not been for us making the presentation about why this was important for everyone, not just one country.

GOLDBERG: Is it possible that the prime minister of Israel has over-learned the lessons of the Holocaust?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think the prime minister has a profound responsibility to protect the Israeli people in a hostile neighborhood, and I am certain that the history of the Holocaust and of anti-Semitism and brutality directed against the Jewish people for more than a millennium weighs on him when he thinks about these questions.

I think it's important to recognize, though, that the prime minister is also head of a modern state that is mindful of the profound costs of any military action, and in our consultations with the Israeli government, I think they take those costs, and potential unintended consequences, very seriously.

GOLDBERG: Do you think Israel could cause damage to itself in America by preempting the Iranian nuclear program militarily?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I don't know how it plays in America. I think we in the United States instinctively sympathize with Israel, and I think political support for Israel is bipartisan and powerful.

In my discussions with Israel, the key question that I ask is: How does this impact their own security environment? I've said it publicly and I say it privately: ultimately, the Israeli prime minister and the defense minister and others in the government have to make their decisions about what they think is best for Israel's security, and I don't presume to tell them what is best for them.

But as Israel's closest friend and ally, and as one that has devoted the last three years to making sure that Israel has additional security capabilities, and has worked to manage a series of difficult problems and questions over the past three years, I do point out to them that we have a sanctions architecture that is far more effective than anybody anticipated; that we have a world that is about as united as you get behind the sanctions; that our assessment, which is shared by the Israelis, is that Iran does not yet have a nuclear weapon and is not yet in a position to obtain a nuclear weapon without us having a pretty long lead time in which we will know that they are making that attempt.

In that context, our argument is going to be that it is important for us to see if we can solve this thing permanently, as opposed to temporarily. And the only way, historically, that a country has ultimately decided not to get nuclear weapons without constant military intervention has been when they themselves take [nuclear weapons] off the table. That's what happened in Libya, that's what happened in South Africa. And we think that, without in any way being under an illusion about Iranian intentions, without in any way being naive about the nature of that regime, they are self-interested. They recognize that they are in a bad, bad place right now. It is possible for them to make a strategic calculation that, at minimum, pushes much further to the right whatever potential breakout capacity they may have, and that may turn out to be the best decision for Israel's security.

These are difficult questions, and again, if I were the prime minister of Israel, I'd be wrestling with them. As president of the United States, I wrestle with them as well.

GOLDBERG: Could you shed some light on your relationship with the prime minister? You've met with him more than with any other world leader. It's assumed that you have a dysfunctional relationship. What is it like?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I actually think the relationship is very functional, and the proof of the pudding is in the eating. The fact of the matter is, we've gotten a lot of business done with Israel over the last three years. I think the prime minister -- and certainly the defense minister -- would acknowledge that we've never had closer military and intelligence cooperation. When you look at what I've done with respect to security for Israel, from joint training and joint exercises that outstrip anything that's been done in the past, to helping finance and construct the Iron Dome program to make sure that Israeli families are less vulnerable to missile strikes, to ensuring that Israel maintains its qualitative military edge, to fighting back against delegitimization of Israel, whether at the [UN] Human Rights Council, or in front of the UN General Assembly, or during the Goldstone Report, or after the flare-up involving the flotilla -- the truth of the matter is that the relationship has functioned very well.

GOLDBERG: Are you friends? Do you talk about things other than business?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: You know, the truth of the matter is, both of us have so much on our plates that there's not always a lot of time to have discussions beyond business. Having said that, what I think is absolutely true is that the prime minister and I come out of different political traditions. This is one of the few times in the history of U.S.-Israeli relations where you have a government from the right in Israel at the same time you have a center-left government in the United States, and so I think what happens then is that a lot of political interpretations of our relationship get projected onto this.

But one thing that I have found in working with Prime Minister Netanyahu is that we can be very frank with each other, very blunt with each other, very honest with each other. For the most part, when we have differences, they are tactical and not strategic. Our objectives are a secure United States, a secure Israel, peace, the capacity for our kids to grow up in safety and security and not have to worry about bombs going off, and being able to promote business and economic growth and commerce. We have a common vision about where we want to go. At any given moment -- as is true, frankly, with my relationship with every other foreign leader -- there's not going to be perfect alignment of how we achieve these objectives.

GOLDBERG: In an interview three years ago, right before he became prime minister, Netanyahu told me that he believes Iran is being run by a "messianic apocalyptic cult." Last week, General Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, referred to the Iranian leadership as "rational." Where do you fall on this continuum? Do you feel that the leaders of Iran might be so irrational that they will not act in what we would understand to be their self-interest?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think you're right to describe it as a continuum. There is no doubt they are isolated. They have a very ingrown political system. They are founded and fueled on hostility towards the United States, Israel, and to some degree the West. And they have shown themselves willing to go outside international norms and international rules to achieve their objectives. All of this makes them dangerous. They've also been willing to crush opposition in their own country in brutal and bloody ways.

GOLDBERG: Do you think they are messianic?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think it's entirely legitimate to say that this is a regime that does not share our worldview or our values. I do think, and this is what General Dempsey was probably referring to, that as we look at how they operate and the decisions they've made over the past three decades, that they care about the regime's survival. They're sensitive to the opinions of the people and they are troubled by the isolation that they're experiencing. They know, for example, that when these kinds of sanctions are applied, it puts a world of hurt on them. They are able to make decisions based on trying to avoid bad outcomes from their perspective. So if they're presented with options that lead to either a lot of pain from their perspective, or potentially a better path, then there's no guarantee that they can't make a better decision.

GOLDBERG: It seems unlikely that a regime built on anti-Americanism would want to appear to succumb to an American-led sanctions effort.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think the question here is going to be: What exactly are their genuine interests? Now, what we've seen, what we've heard directly from them over the last couple of weeks is that nuclear weapons are sinful and un-Islamic. And those are formal speeches from the supreme leader and their foreign minister.

GOLDBERG: Do you believe their sincerity?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: My point here is not that I believe the sincerity of the statements coming out of the regime. The point is that for them to prove to the international community that their intentions are peaceful and that they are, in fact, not pursuing weapons, is not inconsistent with what they've said. So it doesn't require them to knuckle under to us. What it does require is for them to actually show to the world that there is consistency between their actions and their statements. And that's something they should be able to do without losing face.

GOLDBERG: Let me flip this entirely around and ask: Why is containment not your policy? In the sense that we contained the Soviet Union, North Korea --

PRESIDENT OBAMA: It's for the reason I described -- because you're talking about the most volatile region in the world. It will not be tolerable to a number of states in that region for Iran to have a nuclear weapon and them not to have a nuclear weapon. Iran is known to sponsor terrorist organizations, so the threat of proliferation becomes that much more severe.

The only analogous situation is North Korea. We have applied a lot of pressure on North Korea as well and, in fact, today found them willing to suspend some of their nuclear activities and missile testing and come back to the table. But North Korea is even more isolated, and certainly less capable of shaping the environment [around it] than Iran is. And so the dangers of an Iran getting nuclear weapons that then leads to a free-for-all in the Middle East is something that I think would be very dangerous for the world.

GOLDBERG: Do you see accidental nuclear escalation as an issue?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Absolutely. Look, the fact is, I don't think any of it would be accidental. I think it would be very intentional. If Iran gets a nuclear weapon, I won't name the countries, but there are probably four or five countries in the Middle East who say, "We are going to start a program, and we will have nuclear weapons." And at that point, the prospect for miscalculation in a region that has that many tensions and fissures is profound. You essentially then duplicate the challenges of India and Pakistan fivefold or tenfold.

GOLDBERG: With everybody pointing at everybody else.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: With everybody pointing at everybody else.

GOLDBERG: What I'm getting at specifically is, let's assume there's a Hezbollah attack on Israel. Israel responds into Lebanon. Iran goes on some kind of a nuclear alert, and then one-two-three --

PRESIDENT OBAMA: The potential for escalation in those circumstances is profoundly dangerous, and in addition to just the potential human costs of a nuclear escalation like that in the Middle East, just imagine what would happen in terms of the world economy. The possibilities of the sort of energy disruptions that we've never seen before occurring, and the world economy basically coming to a halt, would be pretty profound. So when I say this is in the U.S. interest, I'm not saying this is something we'd like to solve. I'm saying this is something we have to solve.

GOLDBERG: One of the aspects of this is the question of whether it's plausible that Barack Obama would ever use military power to stop Iran. The Republicans are trying to make this an issue -- and not only the Republicans -- saying that this man, by his disposition, by his character, by his party, by his center-left outlook, is not going to do that.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Look, if people want to say about me that I have a profound preference for peace over war, that every time I order young men and women into a combat theater and then see the consequences on some of them, if they're lucky enough to come back, that this weighs on me -- I make no apologies for that. Because anybody who is sitting in my chair who isn't mindful of the costs of war shouldn't be here, because it's serious business. These aren't video games that we're playing here.

Now, having said that, I think it's fair to say that the last three years, I've shown myself pretty clearly willing, when I believe it is in the core national interest of the United States, to direct military actions, even when they entail enormous risks. And obviously, the bin Laden operation is the most dramatic, but al-Qaeda was on its [knees] well before we took out bin Laden because of our activities and my direction.

In Afghanistan, we've made very tough decisions because we felt it was very important, in order for an effective transition out of Afghanistan to take place, for us to be pushing back against the Taliban's momentum.

So aside from the usual politics, I don't think this is an argument that has a lot of legs. And by the way, it's not an argument that the American people buy. They may have complaints about high unemployment still, and that the recovery needs to move faster, but you don't hear a lot of them arguing somehow that I hesitate to make decisions as commander in chief when necessary.

GOLDBERG: Can you just talk about Syria as a strategic issue? Talk about it as a humanitarian issue, as well. But it would seem to me that one way to weaken and further isolate Iran is to remove or help remove Iran's only Arab ally.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Absolutely.

GOLDBERG: And so the question is: What else can this administration be doing?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, look, there's no doubt that Iran is much weaker now than it was a year ago, two years ago, three years ago. The Arab Spring, as bumpy as it has been, represents a strategic defeat for Iran, because what people in the region have seen is that all the impulses towards freedom and self-determination and free speech and freedom of assembly have been constantly violated by Iran. [The Iranian leadership is] no friend of that movement toward human rights and political freedom. But more directly, it is now engulfing Syria, and Syria is basically their only true ally in the region.

And it is our estimation that [President Bashar al-Assad's] days are numbered. It's a matter not of if, but when. Now, can we accelerate that? We're working with the world community to try to do that. It is complicated by the fact that Syria is a much bigger, more sophisticated, and more complicated country than Libya, for example -- the opposition is hugely splintered -- that although there's unanimity within the Arab world at this point, internationally, countries like Russia are still blocking potential UN mandates or action. And so what we're trying to do -- and the secretary of state just came back from helping to lead the Friends of Syria group in Tunisia -- is to try to come up with a series of strategies that can provide humanitarian relief. But they can also accelerate a transition to a peaceful and stable and representative Syrian government. If that happens, that will be a profound loss for Iran.

GOLDBERG: Is there anything you could do to move it faster?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, nothing that I can tell you, because your classified clearance isn't good enough. (Laughter.)

This is part of, by the way, the context in which we have to examine our approach toward Iran, because at a time when there is not a lot of sympathy for Iran and its only real ally is on the ropes, do we want a distraction in which suddenly Iran can portray itself as a victim, and deflect attention from what has to be the core issue, which is their potential pursuit of nuclear weapons?

That's an example of factors that -- when we are in consultation with all our allies, including the Israelis, we raise these factors, because this is an issue of many dimensions here, and we've got to factor all of them in to achieve the outcome that hopefully we all want.

GOLDBERG: Do the Israelis understand that? There have been disagreements between Israel and the U.S. before, but this is coming to a head about what the Israelis see as an existential issue. The question is: In your mind, have you brought arguments to Netanyahu that have so far worked out well?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think that in the end, Israel's leaders will make determinations based on what they believe is best for the security of Israel, and that is entirely appropriate.

When we present our views and our strategy approach, we try to put all our cards on the table, to describe how we are thinking about these issues. We try to back those up with facts and evidence. We compare their assessments with ours, and where there are gaps, we try to narrow those gaps. And what I also try to do is to underscore the seriousness with which the United States takes this issue. And I think that Ehud Barak understands it. I think that Prime Minister Netanyahu, hopefully when he sees me next week, will understand it.

And one of the things that I like to remind them of is that every single commitment I have made to the state of Israel and its security, I have kept. I mean, part of your -- not to put words in your mouth -- but part of the underlying question is: Why is it that despite me never failing to support Israel on every single problem that they've had over the last three years, that there are still questions about that?

GOLDBERG: That's a good way to phrase it.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: And my answer is: there is no good reason to doubt me on these issues.

Some of it has to do with the fact that in this country and in our media, this gets wrapped up with politics. And I don't think that's any secret. And if you have a set of political actors who want to see if they can drive a wedge not between the United States and Israel, but between Barack Obama and a Jewish American vote that has historically been very supportive of his candidacy, then it's good to try to fan doubts and raise questions.

But when you look at the record, there's no "there" there. And my job is to try to make sure that those political factors are washed away on an issue that is of such great strategic and security importance to our two countries. And so when I'm talking to the prime minister, or my team is talking to the Israeli government, what I want is a hardheaded, clear-eyed assessment of how do we achieve our goals.

And our goals are in sync. And historically, one of the reasons that the U.S.-Israeli relationship has survived so well and thrived is shared values, shared history, the links between our peoples. But it's also been because it has been a profoundly bipartisan commitment to the state of Israel. And the flip side of it is that, in terms of Israeli politics, there's been a view that regardless of whether it's a Democratic or Republican administration, the working assumption is: we've got Israel's back. And that's something that I constantly try to reinforce and remind people of.

GOLDBERG: Wait, in four words, is that your message to the prime minister -- we've got Israel's back?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: That is not just my message to the prime minister, that's been my message to the Israeli people, and to the pro-Israel community in this country, since I came into office. It's hard for me to be clearer than I was in front of the UN General Assembly, when I made a more full-throated defense of Israel and its legitimate security concerns than any president in history -- not, by the way, in front of an audience that was particularly warm to the message. So that actually won't be my message. My message will be much more specific, about how do we solve this problem.



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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago
It must be clear: Israel is not and has never been at war with Iran. Israel, in fact, doesn't even share a border with Iran.

Israel's reaction has always been just that, a reaction; one that conveys assertiveness in the face of Iran's regime and leaders who have called, time and again, to wipe Israel off the face of earth, and with it all Jewish life in it, including the nearly six million Jews of Israel. This, Israel, as any other country, would not accept.

And, Iran, of course, not only has repeated its call, it has also, equipped, trained and financed its frot troops on Israel's norther border, Hizballah, and Israel's southern border, Hamas, to carry out acts of mass murder of Jews, among other means through the use of rockets and missiles directed at the population center of Israel.

The next step from Iran's perspective, is to equip such means with nuclear explosives....

Would any of us allow for this to development, to take place if we were in Israel's shoes...??

(Edited by author 1 day ago)
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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
P.S. And, having said the above, regardless of how we, members of the liberal democratic world, react to the aggressive and deadly intents of the Iranian regime, to spread its Islamist hegemony throughout the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, the Americas and beyond, we must first realize that we are all in the same boat and not only tiny Israel, a country the size of Wales in the UK, that has been targeted by by Iran to be wiped off the face of earth.

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tpvero 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Really Ben, Do you come back here and read, not what you say, but how you sound? This not a joke or some hypothetical discussion of the Talmud. American men and women are going to be killed: Humans in general are going to be killed and will you continue this word game then?

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to tpvero
My name is Jehudah Ben-Israel, not Ben!!

As someone who probably knows a thing or two about the evil of war, one does appreciate he matter at hand as an existential question. And, as such, the preservation of life must be defended and won, when not in a theoretical fashion an Islamist force such as Iran is eager to wipe countries and peoples off the face of earth. No, I wouldn't hand the Iranian my other cheek...!!

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
It's as if those dastardly Iranians believe they have been "chosen" by a higher power... the nerve!

(Edited by author 1 day ago)
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dedc79 1 day ago in reply to GreenMarine
Care to explain your reference to "chosen" or prefer to just wink and chortle at your clever little joke?

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to dedc79
I'm your huckleberry... the idea that any ethnicity or nation should think itself chosen by some supernatural being is effing ridiculous. I think it's wonderful that I am allowed to think that in these United States without my civil rights being subject to my own ethnicity. I'm even allowed to buy land...

The hidden imam vs. greater Israel stuff has all the veracity of kindergartners arguing over who's sky Daddy can beat the other's sky Daddy up. Clever enough?

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Private 1 day ago in reply to GreenMarine
It's ok when a certain group does it....what audacity! No wonder these people are despised all through history.

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dedc79 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Ok, again just so we're clear and out in the open. You are saying "No wonder jews are despised all through history?"

If that's your belief why the cowardly "these people"?

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Michael Strickland 22 hours ago in reply to dedc79
Hate to say it, but I've got to agree with you here. Private is voicing naked, unadorned anti-semitism.

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J M 19 hours ago in reply to Private
I'm offended by your bigotry.
-- a secular Jew.

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John Emery 14 hours ago in reply to J M
How can you get offended when his statement was so broad and you really cant tell what he even meant. Its your own interpretation that has offended yourself. dedc79 has the idea if someone says something ask for clarity instead of jumping to conclusions and taking offense? A level of contemplation is necessary to even think about talking to another individual about any debatable subject matter. Otherwise it just turns into people getting their feathers ruffled and no one really gaining any positive information or insight. This seems to be the problem with 99% of discussion boards. Which helps make you a secular Jew that is hypocritical in this sense and has no bearing but to agitate the likes of others because we can not take the time to look at a post as simple as 2 poorly verbated sentences.

(Edited by author 14 hours ago)
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Michael J Peterson 12 hours ago in reply to John Emery
Israel was founded by secular jews, naturally reacting to their recent persecution. Not rationally mind you, but naturally. The evils of nationalism can apply in any time, in any place, to any so-called race. Or is it religion? It's all so confusing today. I'm an American citizen first. Not a member of any Abrahamic cults that obligate me to be complicit in their bids for power as they scour the Earth for it's last vestiges of non-renewable resources. And for the right-wing Jews who take contributions from Evangelicals and Catholics who staunchly support you...I suggest you read the New Testament. Rapture isn't looking to0 pretty for you ;). Call it real anti-semitism entering from the backdoor. The scapegoating will begin anew if this country is bankrupted through another world war.

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Norman Hendrickson 7 hours ago in reply to John Emery
The nature of modern bigotry is to be so circumspect as to obscure their prejudice, and thus allow them the cover of saying "Oh no, you misunderstand!" while replying with yet another vaguely hateful statement showing their animosity towards the Jewish people and the state of Israel.

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dedc79 23 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
You know, I see this comment time and again, and I really can't believe this kind of filth is still circulating. If you'd look into it for just a second, you'd realize the word "chosen" doesn't mean what you've suggested it means. Your interpretation has no basis in the text and no basis in reality. Chosen meant only that jews were the original recipients of the ten commandments from God. Now i happen to believe the whole thing is a made-up story, but only racists like yourself would try to turn it around and make it seem like jews have a superiority complex.

(Edited by author 22 hours ago)
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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to dedc79
As does a majority of Zionist claims of Muslims trying to kill all Jews. The Qur'an speaks nothing of the sort.

For further reading Surah II: The Cow 62.

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Andi 19 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
This comment was flagged for review.

Rob Tullis 14 hours ago in reply to Andi
I really wish people like you would stand back and listen to yourselves for once. I won't even get into the the whole argument about how this ISN'T a christian nation... for the point I am trying to make, the whole thing is moot.

People like you are putting lives in danger by spouting this filth. Nothing incenses people more than to have their faith and their beliefs trod upon by ignorant idiots. Stop throwing fuel on the fire.

Besides, who are you to judge someone else. Judge not, lest ye be judged.

(Edited by author 14 hours ago)
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John Emery 14 hours ago in reply to Rob Tullis
So.....its OK to have individuals claim vengeance by way of taking life for burning a book or even talking against the views of the quran. A religion that completely stifles enlightenment and freedom of the individual outside of "their" context, seems like something that even PROGRESSIVES should not take liking to since it is completely the opposite.

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Michael J Peterson 12 hours ago in reply to John Emery
Jesus is the most quoted prophet in the Q'uran...>_> If we were the Ottomans we would be spouting the same arrogance about Catholics.

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to John Emery
No it's not okay. But it's also not okay to commit the fallacy of guilt by association. You shouldn't judge all Muslims by the actions of a few, just as we shouldn't judge all Christians by the actions of a few. I don't like religious intolerance or oppression of women or violent punishment for apostasy or heresy or any of those things that Christians for the most part left behind centuries ago. For whatever reasons (and there are many to discuss) the historical progress of Islam has proceeded at a different pace. None of this justifies taking a false and oversimplified view of angrily judging an entire group based on limited cases. The truth is much much more complicated than that.

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Hafeezur Rahman 14 hours ago in reply to Andi
andi, so much hate?

I'll reciprocate, but not against Christianity, as after all that would somehow insult one of the purest humans who walked this earth.As for people like you, including the 7 idiots who liked this crap, you guys are the true cursed scum of the earth. It gives me great pleasure in the certain knowledge that you will burn in the most horrible way for all eternity, if you continue along this path of hatred against the truth.So first, try to shed some of that hatred. Who knows, maybe a miracle will happen, and you will begin to see the light.

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James Moore 2 hours ago in reply to Hafeezur Rahman
jack off

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Hoosain Jacobs 12 hours ago in reply to Andi
Islam shall live and be practised till the end of the world. What you calling for is Peace and Justice to come to an end.You stupid. You are one of those" Yea man we great man,We have military might man, yea man we'll bomb any country to ribbons man,yea man we are great man. That's your mentality.

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Norman Hendrickson 7 hours ago in reply to Hoosain Jacobs
It is good when such massive ignorance as yours is displayed for all to see. Keep up the good work. Post up some more drivel.

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James Moore 2 hours ago in reply to Hoosain Jacobs
Your mentality is beat women and ass rape little boys

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portorium 12 hours ago in reply to Andi
maybe we could put them on train cars and send them to camps to be dealt with. all ~1 billion of them. that should make jesus weep with joy!

(Edited by author 12 hours ago)
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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to portorium
Jesus cautioned not to suffer fools - consider your insufferable

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goatbeard 19 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Is not Muhammad the role model in Islam, including his murdering of some 600 Jews? Just asking.

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Andi 18 hours ago in reply to goatbeard
Yes Muhammad the devil he was. They killed Christians and turn their Churches into devil worship Mosque' to celebrate their murders. America has to wake up and ban these devils from our Christian shores. That is what they want to do in NY they murder Christians and build the pig den Mosque' in it's place. Take 911 that is all I need to know about Islam. We have to protect our self that is why god gave us Nukes to send these devil back to Allah the devil, it is his will and we have the technology to do it. Nuke Iran or wait until they go to Mecca and get thousands of these dogs all at once.

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portorium 12 hours ago in reply to Andi
you ridiculous lunatic. god did not give us nuclear weapons. the same science you deride as false when it proves that industry is destroying humanity is the same science robert oppenheimer used when he helped developed a bomb that also has the potential to destroy humanity. or poe's law. i don't even know anymore.

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to portorium
well that was a demonstrable waste of space

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to portorium
During the Manhattan Project Oppenheimer was hiking in the mountains around Los Alamos and found full blueprints for a nuclear fission device carved into stone tablets. Don't you know that?

Poe's law in action. ;)

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Stevek863 4 hours ago in reply to Andi
Who is "They?" Is it 1.6 billion Muslims? If so, is it your logic that since some Muslims killed Christians then all Muslims will kill Christians. Do you believe that since some blacks commit crimes then all blacks are criminals? Do you believe that since some Jews are wealthy, all Jews are wealthy?

Do you hate yourself as much as you hate people from other cultures? Are you afraid they are happier than you?

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to Andi
You've got a serious anger problem dude. I can't believe you really mean this. You need to pray some more, or whatever it is you do to seek wisdom and calm and peace. You seem to have no room for these things inside your mind.

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James Moore 1 hour ago in reply to Andi
moron

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Nadine Carroll 17 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
I have read Surah 2: 109 "Quite a number of the People of the Book wish they could Turn you (people) back to infidelity after ye have believed, from selfish envy, after the Truth hath become Manifest unto them: But forgive and overlook, Till Allah accomplish His purpose; for Allah Hath power over all things."

But it my understanding that abrogation is an established principle in all schools of Islamic jurisprudence, and that Surah 2:109 has been abrogated by Surah 9:29 "Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued."

Is my understanding correct?

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clearhead 15 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
"Nothing of the sort"? There are plenty of us who have read this book, Mahmoud, so don't try to tell us what's "not" in it.

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to clearhead
But you need to compare what's in the Bible with what Jews and Christians do. Lot offered his two virgin daughters up to the lustful crowd outside his house. According to the Bible an adulterous woman should be stoned to death. And God commanded lots of slaughter of unbelievers, and their women and children. Christians ought not to eat pork or shellfish.

So if you find something based on 7th century local cultural norms and historical context in the Quran, you are not proving that this is what Muslims do or want to do. These ancient texts, both the Bible and the Quran, have been softened by modern practice and standards.

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Norman Hendrickson 7 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
It wasn't the Qur'an that said the state of Israel should be wiped off the map. It was Iran's president.

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JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD 6 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
I'm interested in what you believe more specifically how does a Muslim believer gain entry into heaven? Is it by his own hand? How can we a sinful prideful arrogant rebellious generation ever earn any approval from a HOLY GOD? We are all corrupted both morally and physically and as imperfect beings can never in our best works satisfy a holy god would you agree? If we were to call GOD to exercise his HOLY JUDGEMENT on us we would all be doomed. Would you you to ask for GOD's holy judgement on you this moment? (I'd strongly advise against it :). Without GODs grace are we not dead? Are you as a Muslim allowed to read the GOSPEL of Jesus Christ? What does it say? Is what it says filthy or truthful? How does GOD's grace manifest itself? Who was Jesus Christ and what did he say? Does God call Jesus Christ his son? Do Christians worship 3 God's or is it really God the father, God the spirit and God the fleshly son offered as an a sacrifice to atone for our imperfections? Did sin enter the world through the temptation of one man? How then should sin be eradicated? Does it make sense that it would exit through one man by way of Gods GRACE and not by our feeble attempts at making ourselves like the Most High? If you were to stand before the throne of the most High right now and he asked you why he should let you into his heaven what would your answer be?

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD
How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? Did Spock really die in the Wrath of Khan?

Do you believe these questions have answers?

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JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD 2 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
Galatians 6:7
Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

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jeffj900 2 hours ago in reply to JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD
I believe we do sow what we reap. That's why I'm trying to tell you the truth. If you think you are exercising some kind of power by trying to intimidate me with a quotation out of the Bible, then you too shall some day reap what you have sown. People who believe they can fly are heading for a rude awakening. Reality is very hard.

Here is some fact for you: I don't believe in ghosts. I don't believe in the supernatural. Your God is powerless because he doesn't exist. His only power is what you grant him in your mind. This is why God has to employ Crusaders and Terrorists to get anything done; people get tired of waiting for his inaction and take matters into their own hands. This is reality. Those who take action for the sake of their God are proving they have no faith in him, they are demonstrating that they too realize he is powerless, not real, non-existant.

Are you going to try to scare and threaten me with more Bronze Age poetry? Good luck with that.

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JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD 2 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
"Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate." (Proverbs 8:13 RSV)"For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips, let them be trapped in their pride" (Psalm 59:12 RSV)
"For the wicked boasts of the desires of his heart, and the man greedy for gain curses and renounces The Lord. In the pride of his countenance the wicked does not seek Him" (Psalm 10:3-4 RSV)
"And if in spite of this you will not hearken to me, then I will chastise you again sevenfold for your sins, and I will break the pride of your power, and I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like brass; and your strength shall be spent in vain, for your land shall not yield its increase, and the trees of the land shall not yield their fruit. Then if you walk contrary to me, and will not hearken to me, I will bring more plagues upon you, sevenfold as many as your sins." (Leviticus 26:18-21 RSV)"The haughty looks of man shall be brought low, and the pride of men shall be humbled; and The Lord alone will be exalted in that day." (Isaiah 2:11 RSV)"A man's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor" (Proverbs 29:23 RSV)

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jeffj900 1 hour ago in reply to JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD
You are in danger of failing the Turing test.

Fine, I get your point. You think I'm arrogant, prideful, sinful, and evil, and destined to burn in hell forever. I've read the Bible and I know about your theology.

Now, for the sake of argument, let's suppose your God exists, and that he created everything, myself included. He created me with a mind that looks at evidence and reasons about things in such a way that I can't possibly believe he exists based on all available evidence. That is the result of me, as created by God, seeking the truth. To believe anything else I would have to lie to myself. Should I seek the truth, or should I lie to myself?

I believe that all humans are part of the same family, regardless of their country, religion, or language. Doesn't it strike you as suspicious that children born in Muslim households end up being Muslims, children born in Christian households end up being Christians, children born in Buddhist or Hindu households end up being Buddhist or Hindu? To me this kind of contingency on the accident of birth suggests that all religions are equally true. If you examine their differences and conflicts, this very quickly transforms into the conclusion that they are all equally untrue.

Don't worry though; we are all connected by DNA and evolution; we all basically have the same general needs and dreams and hopes; so I can forgive you for having so deeply swallowed the religious bait, and for freezing your mind in the first century under the power of tradition, authority, and revelation, and choosing to live in ignorant darkness rather than living by the light of reason and intelligence and accurate evidence based knowledge of reality. It's a luxury to be able to float around in an imaginary haze of poetry, but at some point it can have real negative consequences for yourself and others near you if you refuse to see what is right in front of your nose.

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jeffj900 20 hours ago in reply to dedc79
I don't think the implication is that Jews have a superiority complex. Speaking only for myself, but I don't think I'm alone in this, there is a lot of resentment toward the Israeli right wing. There isn't a lot of daylight morally between the bearded rabbis spitting on little girls, and the bearded Imams tromping on civil rights in Iran. Fortunately the bearded rabbis don't hold all the power like the Iranian Imams do, but the rabbis have too much power. The "Greater Israel" movement is what disgusts me. The settlers ought to get the hell out of the west bank, as should the IDF. I'm all for the continued thriving of Israel, but isn't it a little absurd that the Palestinians are reduced now to 22% of the original partitioned area? I firmly believe that Israel has the capacity to adequately defend itself if it withdraws from the West Bank, and I don't see any good reason to continue this de-facto land grab under the guise of national defense.

I stand firmly behind the continued survival of the liberal democracy and thriving modern economy that was built in the tradition of David Ben Gurion. Unfortunately that tradition is being challenged by the immoderate illiberal forces of Biblical literalism. And the apocalyptic Christians in America are too quick to apply their Biblical literalism to the situation as well. No matter how sincerely a person admires the Jewish people and their flourishing nation, if they criticize any specific policy of the Israeli government, or criticize the project of permanent annexation of the West Bank or the radical settlers and their price tag movement violence, we unjustly get tagged as anti-Israel and anti-Semitic.

This is not a healthy or rational situation any more. I should be able to have reasonable disagreements with immoderate right wing theocratic forces inside Israel and still be able to support Israel as a nation and the Jewish people as deserving a nation and deserving credit for their excellent achievements and as deserving special deference and sympathy for the horrible suffering they have endured, not just in the 20th century but for a millennium. My position is no different from moderate and liberal Israelis, and certainly they want Israel to survive and prosper in peace and security. I want that. I just don't want to stand behind a Jewish theocracy.

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ArcticRanger 18 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
Just as an historical note, there is no such ethnic or national people as "Palestinians." Don't ever forget that the residents of the "West Bank" were citizens of TransJordan before that country threw up its hands in frustration at dealing with them and used as cover the Israeli victory in the 1967 6-Day war to give BACK the West Bank to Israel, which TransJordan had TAKEN FROM Israel in the 48-49 war. So let's not hold a candlelight vigil for "the Palestinians" unless you want to include all of Israel in that, as well, because it was all of Israel (including the West Bank, the Gaza strip, and the Golan Heights) that were part of the British Protectorate of Palestine.

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jeffj900 14 hours ago in reply to ArcticRanger
Why don't you look at a map of UN resolution 181 partition plan, and the map of TransJordan, and read something about the 1948 Arab-Israeli war before pretending you know something about the history. Then you can come back here and spare yourself more embarrassment by deleting the totally ignorant and inaccurate rubbish you just typed.

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
wow comendable job of doing NOTHING to refute his actual stance - you sure showed him - oops I guess you didn't.

(Edited by author 5 hours ago)
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jeffj900 4 hours ago in reply to molkehii
When somebody has a view that is totally detached from reality and entirely poisoned by politically and religiously motivated historical revisionism that consists entirely of perverted pseudo-facts and selective cherry-picking and intentionally misrepresented perspectives, there is little point in arguing. They need to educate themselves properly before one can even engage them in a discussion. What ArcticRanger wrote is non-sense based on half-truths and deliberate distortions.

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portorium 12 hours ago in reply to ArcticRanger
Just as an historical note, there is no such ethnic or national people as "americans". don't ever foget that the residents of "the united states" were citizens of Great Britain before that country threw up its hands in frustration at dealing with them and used as cover the revolutionary war in the 1770s.

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to portorium
what tripe - I assume you must have been grinning like an idiot when you typed that knowing that there is absolutely no comparison between the two?

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Rob 8 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
How much of a " flourishing nation" would Israel be without the US finacial aid.
Strong nations DON'T depend on foreign aid !
They may be called Liberia, Somalia or Israel it's all the same.
And Israel gets more US aid than either one of those third world nations.
On top of that Israel do everthing to drag the US into wars, done so for decades.
Just look at The Lavon Affair and the USS Liberty, just two examples....

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jeffj900 4 hours ago in reply to Rob
Whether Israel is flourishing or not is a separate question from US aid. Israel does not need that aid. Israel's GDP is over $31,000 per capita ranked 27th in the world, whereas Jordan and Syria, for example, are both a little over $5,000 per capita ranked 96th and 114th respectively.

The aid to Israel exists for three reasons: because of the holocaust, because lot's of American Christians are obsessed with the Jesus Holy Land history, and because Israel's neighbors hate it. From the Arab stand point Israel forcefully took that land from Arabs. The story is more complicated than that; there is truth in the Arab narrative, but also those lands had been part of the Ottoman Empire, lost to the British in WWI, so that significantly weakens the Arab claim. If Ottoman Turkey had not allied with the Germans in WWI, then Israel would not exist.

Still there is a lot of land that was awarded to Arabs in the UN partition and the termination of the British Mandate that has been taken forcefully by Israel. Some of these Israeli actions were aggressive jockeying for power and control in the pre-partition Civil War, and in the Israeli-Arab war. And some of this was directly in response to Arab aggression. Today the truth of various overlapping and competing claims to land and to moral indignation and outrage is an impossibly chaotic twisted mess with truth on both sides.

But when it comes to land and power in the present, Israel has gained huge advantages over the Palestinians. And Israel has killed at least 10 Arabs for every Jew killed by Arabs, taking all terrorism and missile attacks into account. The idea that Israel is a vulnerable innocent victim is totally false. It's true for the individuals who suffered from suicide bombers. But it's not true of the nation as a whole over it's entire history.

Today the Palestinians seem to be learning from Gandhi and MLK, organizing non-violent protests. This seems to be their most effective route. Terrorism and Hamas (and Hezbollah) have hurt their cause tremendously by making American and Israeli public opinion strongly biased against Palestinians. It didn't help when all of America saw Palestinians dancing for joy in the streets on their post 9/11 television screens over and over again.

Today the US continues that aid out of habit. Israel could do quite well on it's own. Their annual GDP is over $260 billion, and we only give them around $3 billion annually. Every little bit helps, but they don't NEED it, as you put it. The reason the US continues that aid is because it can afford to, and because it's politically popular with a large constituency of Christians and is supported by a well organized and politically effective Jewish voting bloc. Any American politician who suggested that Israel really didn't need that money any more would be correct, but in danger of ending his career in most US voting districts.

If you had read any of the history of the Zionist migration, the purchase of land and the establishment of civil institutions, irrigation and agriculture, and other rapid economic progress the Jewish settlers made, and if you understood how organized, educated, and prosperous Israel was compared to it's neighbors, you couldn't possibly question the usage of the word flourishing.

Yes Israel has annoyed the US on many occasions. After all, they are looking out for Israeli interests, not US interests. And the US had many Cold War related concerns that conflicted with Israeli concerns in the days of the Lavon Affaire and the USS Liberty incident. So the situation is very complicated.

Today the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, and the delay of establishing a Palestinian nation are directly in conflict with US real foreign policy interests in the region. They are also a terrible injustice to Palestinians who wish to live in peace and prosperity, and whose freedom and property rights are regularly infringed upon in cruel ways. The only thing that stops the US from more forcefully pressuring Israel to move in the way our national security interests dictate is the emotional attachment and political clout of Christians and Jews in America who can't stand the idea of the US doing anything but obsequiously bowing down to Israel, and who aren't educated and intelligent enough to take a detached and realistic view of the situation.

Perhaps you didn't notice the fits of apoplexy and panic among the GOP and the AIPAC lobby when Obama once casually, reasonably, and correctly mentioned that there should be "some daylight" between the US and Israel. A rational actor detached from the emotional history would agree that Obama was right, and America has very strong and compelling reasons to make gestures of peace toward various Muslim priorities in order to help repair the awful damage done by Iraq and Afghanistan. Unfortunately, in the US and Israel too much political power is wielded by people with no sympathy towards Muslims (which was greatly intensified by 9/11) and with powerful emotional attachments to the post-holocaust Jewish Homeland and to Biblical prophecies and Holy Land stories of Jesus and his second coming. These religious forces are aligned in support of the most hard-lined right-wing theocratic elements of Israel. This political equation is the source of much irrationality, misery, unhappiness, and confusion. It's what is holding back a peaceful win-win solution that could greatly reduce tension and increase prosperity in the region.

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JESUS_CHRIST_is_the_LORD 2 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
John 8:42–44
Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.

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teargarden20 22 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
the rebirth of Israel was prophesied in the Bible. Even though it was founded by luciferians and run by them. Just like all the countries now.
By the way you can "buy" land here, but you may NEVER own it!
Welcome to fascist serfdom again!

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portorium 12 hours ago in reply to teargarden20
I think this is one of the most distressing and underreported issues about israel. Christian theocrat lunatics send billions of dollars over there so jesus will come back and kill all of the jews. and then the rest of the world. and Prime Minister Netanyahu takes their money because he is cynical, and it's basically free money. Obviously Jesus isn't going to come back. But it gives these lunatics like Ted Hagee and the above poster a forum to spout their childish garbage.

(Edited by author 12 hours ago)
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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to portorium
please stop - you are embarrassing yourself beyond the pale

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jeffj900 4 hours ago in reply to molkehii
Nice use of self-referential reflexivity there. You've got to stop talking to yourself in public though. People will begin to wonder.

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hillcoguy 21 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
More like a dingle berry.

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J M 19 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
I don't think the salient issue is one 'sky Daddy' vs. another (I actually agree with you on that), but whether Israel is right to view an Iranian nuclear weapon as an existential threat. I don't see much to argue about on this. And, further, I agree with Obama that, even leaving Israel out of the picture for the moment, Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon is a grave security threat to U.S. interests.

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Ray Williams 16 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
I think it's funny that you still think you have civil rights nas a US Citizen. What do you think you are,a Mexican?

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stopthemorons 6 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
Yea. You're a huckleberry - Hucleberry Hound.

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Leo 15 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
An extremely stupid comment. I'm embarrassed for you , such a moron

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jeffj900 4 hours ago in reply to Leo
At this moment, 45 likes for Green Marine, 2 likes for Leo. I think that says something about who is stupid, who is a moron, and who should be embarrassed. Try adding something constructive and intelligent to the conversation if you are capable. Anybody can throw around childish terms of frustrated impotence, like "stupid" and "moron". It takes no understanding and no effort and results in worthless non-sense.

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Michael Strickland 22 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Doesn't make a damn bit of difference if your name is Rumplestiltskin. "Tiny" little Israel is a MAJOR nuclear power and more than capable of defending itself. Time for the tail to stop wagging the dog here. Netanyahu/Likkud say, "jump!", USA says, "how high?" WTF?

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Leo 15 hours ago in reply to Michael Strickland
actually you are not educated enough to see the connections between what happens to Israel and the rest of world events. I doubt you have that capacity so I won't bother explaining it to you. Why don't you go watch TV or something harmless like that and let the adults discuss things here Ok . this isn't for you at all. See if Dancing with the Stars is on or Jersey Shore ok? Good , run along now

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to Leo
Patronizing? check
Insulting? check
Devoid of Relevant Content? check
You've passed the empty useless meaningless post test.

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YoM 5 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
He said Israeli Regime and not Israel. Big difference. Learn the truth...Ben. :p

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JehudahBenIsrael 5 hours ago in reply to YoM
Having listened to him, time and again, and the audience to which he addressed himself, one that responded with calls: "death to America, death to Israel", one can't be mistaken.

This, coupled with the actual preparations Iran has been making, the people it has trained and already put to use on Israel's northern and southern borders, and the weapons developed and deployed, ones designed to do nothing but to bring about mass murder upon population centers, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to appreciate the picture.

And, since we, Jews, have been in this game before, more than ones, we know what the results may end up being, and we can't take any chances...

I hope the rest of humanity can't either!!

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Enlightened Wookie 1 day ago in reply to tpvero
he sounds pretty good to me. he doesn't sound like he's joking to me. this situation is very similar to the situation leading to WWII. Great Britain, instead of 'nipping Hitler' in the bud, had a policy of 'appeasement'.

i assure you, sir, if Iran gets nukes, the American death toll will be much higher...even if we 'don't get involved'.

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
Apparently, everything sounds like the situation leading to WWII when the topic is Israel.

WWII ad absurdum.

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popsiq 1 day ago in reply to GreenMarine
Hitler made similar noises about Czechoslovakia, and then Poland, and Denmark and Norway then France, the Balkans and finally the Soviet Union. All threats to the existence of 'the Volk'. And all, in turn, the victims of 'defensive' aggression.

It's a wonder he didn't think of 'humanitarian bombardment', for he sure did lots of it.

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to popsiq
Hey leftie! Aren't you ashamed to turn around WW2 players as to make parallels between Israel and Nazi Germany?
If God exist I am sure he will judge you for this parallel. If God does not exist, I am very happy that you will turn in less than 50-60 years from now into Nothingness. But I really do hope that God DOES exists, because for this insult to Israel (God's People) you will get more than you bargain for your assessmant on Israel intentions in the region.

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GreenMarine 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Is that the evangelical equivalent of casting a spell on someone?

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
Sounds more like the acknowledgement of the truth to me - but your pea brain probably can't handle that here's to a life's goal of becoming dirt - cheers oh smart one.

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
This comment was flagged for review.

RotalSnart 23 hours ago in reply to Private
I'll remember your post when Iran gets the snot kicked out of them

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Randome hope 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Who give you the right to quote the Bible, you being a pagan and all?

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hefler w 23 hours ago in reply to Private
by your own hateful words. . .you have proven the establishment of Israel as an internationally recognized independent state. tell the real reason you are so hateful. . oh great desert dweller?
keeping in mind the fact that for 10,000 years of recorded human history, . . .Common Criminals. . .sentenced to death for their crimes. . .commonly took their chances to live by fleeing into the wastelands for a chance at life. . . .it is little or no surprise that the wastelands. . .much like a cesspool. . .becomes full to over-flowing.

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tim holt 23 hours ago in reply to Private
One can only hope that you are in one of the crosshairs when the "non legitimate" country is attacked.

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Michael Strickland 22 hours ago in reply to Private
I can see why you never rose in the ranks, Private.

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Michael Strickland 22 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
English much?

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portorium 11 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
I wish there was a way to like comments ironically.

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Hey Ranhome Dope, guess what? God doesn't exist. Now that that's out of the way, maybe people can start looking at the situation in terms of the real human beings involved, and their real needs, and not in terms of Apocalyptic Cosmic Drama.

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to popsiq
My furnace makes noises, too. Maybe its planning to invade Poland?

I agree with you popsiq, BTW...

(Edited by author 23 hours ago)
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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
wecall people like you hyenas - giggling little sneaky followers

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RJClawson 20 hours ago in reply to popsiq
Churchill did a bit of bombing himself.

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bloodyspartan 22 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
you are not to bright are you, but you think you are. Just another coward failing to face reality but you will sooner or later.

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
But Israel is the one stealing land and being appeased for it. Stop appeasing Israel.

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Predictor92 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Israel were guarteed all of the land east of the Jordan at San Remo, they are willing to compromise for a contiguous Palestinian state in the west bank and Gaza, but the Palestinians aren't

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hefler w 23 hours ago in reply to Private
still mad that your people lost their nation in a fair fight . . .1 israeli. . .against 10,000 Palestinians. . .thousands of years ago?. . . .grow up. . .the world is growing so small that marrying your father's brother is no longer healthy to your people, or the world.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 22 hours ago in reply to hefler w
It seems today is my day to teach idiots a little about what they talk about.

I will quote, WORD FOR WORD from the Qur'an right
here. Are you ready?

This is being dictated out of the Holy Qur'an, translated by M.H. Shakir.

Surah IV

23. Forbidden to you are your mothers and your daughters and your sisters and your paternal autnts and your maternal aunts and brother's daughters and sister's daughters and your mothers than have suckled you and your foster-sisters and mothers of your wives and your step-daughters who are in your guardianship and the wives of your sons.

So please stop the defamatory idiocy. Note I insult you not for whatever race, ethnicity, religious practice etc you are. I insult you for your idiocy, pure and simple.

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Ronald Robert Harper 16 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
What about slavery - what does it say about slavery?

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portorium 11 hours ago in reply to Ronald Robert Harper
does it matter? what does USA's sacred constitution say about slavery?

(Edited by author 11 hours ago)
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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to portorium
why would you ask that question if you dishonestly project that you don't care? Why owudl you darg it off the subject unless you really do seethe about it?

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to Ronald Robert Harper
And what does the Bible say about slavery? When will people get serious and realize we are living in the 21st century, and we have acquired real knowledge of nature, so we no longer need to be puppets to moldy books written by people with little understanding of nature?

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
oh well as long as it's M.H. Shakir that says something...

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tim holt 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Seems to me that the islamic pukes have a 20/20 take when it comes to them taking the spoils of war. They just don't do as well when they have their asses handed to them in a war of their creation and lose the land in said war. The united arab attacks that were to "push the jews into the sea" didn't work as planned.

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Michael DiBari 23 hours ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
Apparently you're not aware that the Rothschilds funded Hitler, as did Prescott Bush. Apparently you're not aware that the entire WWII was scripted and planned out. Apparently you don't know that Chamberlain was told to "stand-down." Apparently you're a product of the American education/indoctrination system. Apparently you've been mind controlled and fooled.

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Thorne Kontos 23 hours ago in reply to Michael DiBari
They apparently needed better scriptwriters... There are days when I read statements by people like yourself, and wonder if that person forgot to take his daily medications.

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Randome hope 23 hours ago in reply to Michael DiBari
Listen buddy.
I know all the information you know (and maybe more) If Rothchilds control us (from 300 years now) I don't know for sure, maybe. But as sure as hell I will not fight against Israel and ally myself with Allah guys like you do. This is displeasing to God of Israel first. I don't care about Rothchild's god.

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Read idiot...Prescott Bush was a full grown man and helped Hitler until the US got involved...learn you're history!

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Michael Strickland 22 hours ago in reply to obummerdablunder
Learn YOUR spelling.

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hefler w 23 hours ago in reply to Michael DiBari
More DEMOCRATIC lies? 1) Bush was barely in Diapers when Hitler was in Power. . .don't democrats teach simple mathematics in their indoctrination camps any more?

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ViperX883 22 hours ago in reply to hefler w
Prescott Sheldon Bush (May 15, 1895 – October 8, 1972). Not that I agree with the OP, but the Bush he was talking about most certainly was not in diapers during WWII.

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to ViperX883
hefler...learn to read, better yet learn to research...Prescott Bush...you just might learn something...although I doubt it because the brainwashing in you is complete!

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to Michael DiBari
You sir are 100% correct...the sheeple who disagree have a federally funded education and just don't know better! Actually the Rothchilds funded both sides and this war was planned and allowed to happen...and did the Rothchilds ever make out like bandits!

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molkehii 5 hours ago in reply to Michael DiBari
apparently you have discovered why Lead paint was outlawed...

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ozlanthos 23 hours ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
Are you really that dense? It isn't in Iran's interest to strike us for ANY REASON!!!

-Oz

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Leon Thor Whyte 22 hours ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
Why? Pakistan has nukes, and is less stable and sponsors terrorists. North Korea is less stable than Iran and sponsors terrorism. How many lives were lost in Iraq using similar "intelligence".

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jeffj900 3 hours ago in reply to Enlightened Wookie
The difference between WWII and now, ignoring the obvious facts that Iran is historically and culturally completely different from Germany, is that I don't see anyone appeasing Iran. I think this interview shows that Obama grasps the issues solidly and is taking a pro-active approach to seeing that Iran does not obtain nuclear weapons. The appeasement of Hitler amounted to giving him a free pass to annex the Sudetenland in exchange for his "promise" not to start a war.

What is happening today is that Iran is the subject of enormous pressure and punishing sanctions, backed up with the threat of war, so that it's only choices are to consent to the terms of the NPT with a robust inspection regime for verification, or to face a massive war. Doesn't sound like appeasement to me. It sounds prudent and intelligent and forceful.

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J M 19 hours ago in reply to tpvero
I fail to find any jokes, nor any references to the Talmud, or anything even close. What word game are you referring to? I take JB-I's words as sincere.

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Michael J Peterson 12 hours ago in reply to tpvero
The correct translation of Ahmadinejad's speech from arabic, was "erasing this regime from the pages of history", meaning the racist apartheid government of Israel. Not Israel as a nation-state. I'm tired of this rhetoric. I'm tired of the lies.

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Norman Hendrickson 7 hours ago in reply to tpvero
Yes, many will die...if the Iranian threat is not neutralized. The foreign policy of Iran is that Israel has no right to exist. Period. The President of Iran has said that he wants to eliminate the whole country. Do you not take him at his word? Yeah, let's just allow him to arm up as much as he wants, he really doesn't mean it. They're just mis-understood. Maybe a few S'mores around a campfire, and a few choruses of Kumbaya will fix things up?

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Alex Nunya 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
All that "wiped of the face of the earth" stuff is BS tiger. Mistranslation. Jews have been in Iran for thousands of years and no one butchered them like in Europe. Iranians are not savages big guy. They have a rich history and culture. The problem here is Zionism, not Judaism. Read a little history. 587bc Cyrus the great freed the Jews from slavery and rebuild there temple in Jerusalem.

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to Alex Nunya
No, this is not "stuff" and no "BS", sir!! Listen to the Persian expression, if you understand any, and you too will realize what the Iranian regime has been calling its people to do.

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mlang461 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Why don't you give us the specific threatening Persian Expression so that we can translate it because the original translation of the speech which everyone refers to "wiped off the map" was wrong . The Iranian president did not in fact never directly threatened Israel
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06...

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Daniel Martin Gray 19 hours ago in reply to mlang461
Are you saying that Iranians, as Persians, eschew Radical Islamic ideology?

Could have fooled me. And the Iranian people, subject to the theocratic fanaticism of the Ayatollahs for over thirty years, now.

They were thrown as unarmed human waves against Saddam's well-equipped troops, have been censored and jailed for speaking out of line, and given death sentences, if they happen to be Christians. As for the Jews from Iran, who did indeed reside there in peace for thousands of years, most have fled in terror, the remaining cowed into submission.

By the way, you do realize that literal translation of Iranian and other radical Islamic rhetoric into English NEVER matches what they tell the West, but always lines up neatly with their actions?

And that Islam means "submission"?

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Thought Recon 18 hours ago in reply to mlang461
Get that hypocritical pole out of your mouth and free your mind or martyr yourself.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to Thought Recon
Yep free yourself by learning the truth:
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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Thought Recon 1 hour ago in reply to shablon
A muslim preaching to others about freeing their minds. That's RICH.

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Sharon 17 hours ago in reply to mlang461
He is trying to incite Armageddon and has stated that is his purpose. He has threatened israel repeatedly.

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mlang461 15 hours ago in reply to Sharon
Give me the specific quote and give it to me Farsi with the translation. There are 25000 Jews living in Iran and they are given a place in the parliament and they are allowed to practice their religion in peace. In fact despite fianancial enteaties by Israel they have decided to stay in Iran. The Iranian regime is not anti-semetic but it is anti-zionistic. You can love Jews and still be an anti-zionist. I worked for a extremely religious Orthodox Jewish Post doc who believed that Israel should not exist

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Will Beck 14 hours ago in reply to mlang461
That extremely religious Jewish Post Doc believes that Jews need to wait for the Messiah to usher in Israel. Us secular Jews, who came out from under the choke of Torah study, and who were sick and tired of being massacred for thousands of years, decided to take matters into our own hands. Maybe the Iranians didn't kill Jews, but they taxed them to death and they did nothing to stop the Holocaust. Israel exists to prevent us ETHNIC Jews from ever dying at the hands of an evil regime again. Never again to the Holocaust, the Inquisition, the Pogroms of Russian AND the Middle East. NEVER AGAIN!

For us secular Jews, Ben Gurion is the so-called Messiah. Your friend can keep waiting, but my people got sick of being murdered along the way.

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mlang461 4 hours ago in reply to Will Beck
Will
Thank you fo rthe explanation: I always wondered why he held, as a Jew his what I bleived to be rather peculiar beliefs about Israel. Still "Never Again" although it may feel emotionally good in the gut does not make for a very good foriegn policy. Seventy percent of the population of Iran is under 30 and most of those people admire the West and do not hate Israel but if Israel premptively attacks Iran it will produce a whole new genration which will despise Israel. Gven that we have no direct knowledge that Iran is persuing nuclear weapons and that the assessment of all are intelligence agencies is that they are not, it seems a little premature to start another war with yet another Muslim country

As a Vietnam veteran I have my own lists of NEVER AGAINS

Never again shall we permeptively attack another country
Never again shall we attcak another country wihtout first having the congreess perform its constitutional duty and declare war.
Never again shall we go abroad "looking for monsters to detroy".

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Mark Sochor 5 hours ago in reply to mlang461
Wake up and smell what your shoveling!

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
The youth of Iran so desperately wish to be like us! You are a fool, filled with hate & war!

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Alex Nunya 20 hours ago in reply to obummerdablunder
Fool huh? You are right that the youth of Iran want to be like us but not by us bombing ank killing them smart guy. The best way to topple the government of Iran is to play fair with middle eastern countrys and stop favoring Israel for no beneficial reason. Iran can brin the middle east into the modern era, Israel will divide it forever.

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Will Beck 14 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
Yes, if not for Israel there would be nothing but love and peace the world over. These undeveloped regimes do a fine job fighting amongst themselves on their own. Just wait until the Iran starts targeting the Saudis. It's only a matter of time. In fact, their mutual hatred of Israel is probably the only thing that's kept that region from engaging in all out war for years. But that won't last.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
I listened to it and Yehudah are a liar!
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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cornelius 1 day ago in reply to Alex Nunya
That was long BEFORE the Arab god became supreme in Iran.

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FakeWIPCaller 1 day ago in reply to cornelius
Iranians aren't Arabs, bud.

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to FakeWIPCaller
Iranian are not Arabs... but nevertheless, they are bowing for more than 14 centuries to an ARAB GOD (Allah).

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Europeans should reject that foreign Abrahamic religion forced on them by the sword - it does not serve the interests of White people.

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Randome hope 23 hours ago in reply to Private
It is not foreign. It is ingrained in European spirit for 2000 years. Europe as we know it is Abrahamic. And just because your pagan ass can't take Jesus does not mean that the entire European civilization is not built on this STONE.

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Randome hope 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Christianity was not forced by the sword . Read about the first 300 years (yes, THREE HUNDRED!!! 10 GENERATIONS) after AD. Where do you see Christianity there forced to people by sword?

(Edited by author 23 hours ago)
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GreenMarine 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
What about the last 1,700+ years???

Sure... Constantine was a humanitarian. Ditto the Roman Catholics... and the crusader... and the Spanish Inquisition.

Since no one expects the Spanish Inquisition, I'll give you a pass. But the other stuff you ought to know by now...

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lewisifer 22 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
No no, we must only pick intervals of time that are convenient to our argument. So really, in the last 12 minutes, Randome hope has not said anything stupid, and is therefore a genius.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
Hardly 1,700 years. Russian Czar Monomach became Christian only in abpout year 1,000 and so did Czar Boris (Khan Boris). Much of Europe remains barbariaN TO THIS VERY DAY

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shablon 50 minutes ago in reply to GreenMarine
The only reason Constantine embraced Christianity is because it is the only religion that promised to erase his numerous sins, and thousands of murders he had committed including the one of his own son.

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hefler w 23 hours ago in reply to Private
talk about religion forced upon peoples by the sword? NO WHERE does this phrase exist in Christian Holy Books. . . .only in the "holy books" of a criminal peoples who have no regard for any life but their own.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to hefler w
...and Crusaders killed at least a million muslims and jews, for eating green apples!
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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StandUpAmerica59 3 hours ago in reply to shablon
Revisionsist history, as rewritten by those who would hope to discredit Christianity. Just as the movie "Kingdom of Heaven" is historically wrong, as is not even close regarding what the Christian and Islamic religions stand for. It's all part of the left's push to eliminate their opposition. They fail to realize this day was prophecied in the Bible. God will not be mocked, and He definitely has the last word.

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StandUpAmerica59 3 hours ago in reply to Private
Europeans were never forced by the sword to accept Christianity. And it is quite safe to say Europe is no longer Christian, as they are replaced it with Secular Humanism, by and large. Atheism, in both Russia and China was not forced on people by the sword, but by the gun. Atheism has killed more people than all the religions combined, when you count the wars started by the socialist/communist and fascist regimes. This is the same ideology being forced on the US.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 22 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Hate to butt in here Bud. But Allah is the Islamic god; as more than 80% of Muslims are currently residing in Asia it'd be fair to call Allah the Asian god before the Arab god. Secondly Islam is not an Arab religion, yes Arabs are Muslim and it originated in the Arab world however that was a very. very. very. long time ago. It has further evolved with each and every independent country that it has been used in, manipulated and turned from it's base form into either political regimes and or religious dichotomies each apposing one another. The individual persons understanding of Islam will be different to the next, as would any Jew or Christian. That being said there are common traditions and cultures that are shared throughout the Arab world and Religious holidays practiced throughout the Islamic nations of the world; but that's no different to the similar traditions and cultures existing throughout any region on this Earth.

If you wanna speak big at least try to understand the people you're talking about, their culture, history, diversity, differences; separate the individuals from the Political Ideologies that shape their International Relations; then come back here and speak your mind.

(Edited by author 21 hours ago)
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jeffj900 20 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
The irony in all of this conflict is that Allah is just the Arabic word for the God of Abraham, father of Ishmael and Isaac. So there is only one monotheistic deity in the traditions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. There should be more peace between Christians, Jews, and Muslims. I hope people can start to understand this. The historical antagonism and bitterness is all because of human weakness, human fear, and human need on all sides. None of it has to do with the religions.

(Edited by author 20 hours ago)
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notanxious 17 hours ago in reply to jeffj900
It isn't the Gods who make war....it is the people!

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Alex Nunya 20 hours ago in reply to cornelius
This is true but Persian's know their history and are Shia not Sunni. Their "hidden Iman" is very close to the Christian idea of the return of Christ. Also the Persian religion of Zorastrianism is the pre-cursor of Judaism and thus the original link between the major 3 Abrahamic traditons. Even the story of Jesus is a traslation of the Zorastrian Mithra story. Also Iranians don't like Arabs in general even though they are muslim.

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StandUpAmerica59 3 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
It's interesting that people claim Jesus was taken from previous religions, when, in fact several prominent historians of Roman and Jewish descent wrote about Jesus. Regarding the second most figure of that approximate time, Julius Caesar, there are over 600 separate historical writings verifying Caesar's existence. No on else even comes close to the mountain of evidence verifying Jesus's existence, and his mission on earth. In contrast, there are over 24,000 separate historical writings verifying Jesus's existence. Even more telling is, Jesus's own disciples died standing up for Jesus. Would anyone knowingly die for a lie? They lived with Jesus. They knew everything about him. They truly believed he was the Son of God, died, was buried, and rose again. If you believed this to be a lie, would you suffer a torturous death simply to keep a myth going? Immediately after the death and resurrection of Jesus, the Jewish establishment as well as the Romans, tried to quash the growing Christian church, but instead of dying out, the Christian church exploded in membership. Many people died for what they witnessed as the truth. That continues today in places like China and Africa.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to cornelius
There is no such thing as "Arab God" donkey! All Arabs, muslims, Christians or Alawites pray to Allah

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Cka Redstate America 28 minutes ago in reply to shablon
Well, no, shablon, Christians do not pray to the Allah of Islam.

Yes, in the Middle East, Allah can mean God.

But Christians pray to Jehovah, the Lord God, including Christ Jesus the Son.

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rmacy19 1 day ago in reply to Alex Nunya
Why don't you listen to his language and then put it through a farsi translation program. I have and so has an Iranian friend (just to make sure I didn't 'misunderstand'. Do it and you will hear Amedinajad keep repeating that one of his goals is to 'wipe Israel off the face of the earth'? If someone threatened you and your family and set up snipers in your backyard, would you say it is BS?

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to rmacy19
If Ahmedinajad is a true Muslim then he does not need to repeat 'wipe Israel off the face of the earth' for us to know his true intentions about Jews. Quran spell it out for him in the open for more than 14 centuries now. Can you deny that?

(Edited by author 1 day ago)
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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 22 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Um.. Are you seriously this stupid or do you try extra hard on the
internet? ''Islam wants to destroy all religious competition'' and ''Quran spell it out for him in the open for more than 14 centuries'' really?
Give me three seconds. I will quote, WORD FOR WORD from the Qur'an right
here. Are you ready?

This is being dictated out of the Holy Qur'an, translated by M.H. Shakir.

Surah II: The Cow

62. Surely those who believe, and those who are JEWS (note the word JEWS, here it is again JEWS) , and the Christians (NOTE THE WORD CHRISTIANS HERE, C-H-R-I...STIANS) and the Sabians (tbh not sure who they are, if you know congrats doesn't matter for the point I'm making here), whoever believes in Allah (literally one of the difference words to describe what is commonly referred to in English as God, and as such I shall translate it as such)''

So again without the mocking of your idiocy.

62. Surely those who believe, and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabians, whoever blieves in God and the Last day and does good, they shall have their reward from their Lord, and there is no fear for them, nor shall they grieve.

I believe that is proof enough to deny your claim that the Qur'an (if spelt properly in English just fyi) has not been talking smack about the Jews for 14 centuries.

Please before you defame millions and millions of people (because you do know there are many more Muslims around than Jews right?) try to at the VERY least read their sodding Religious book.

(Edited by author 21 hours ago)
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jpopkamaria 20 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Qur'an (5:51)
- "O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends;
they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend,
then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people."

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to jpopkamaria
How many Jews do you know who take muslims for "friends" or even Christians for that matter?

http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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Alan Richards 17 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Yeah, there are millions of cockroaches, too.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Great work Adham! However your are throwing pearls in front of the pigs!
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
Absolutely! Holy Quran uses the word "kill" only once in the whole book and it is not about Jews. Talmud and Bible use the word "kill" numerous time directed against those they consider inferoior
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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StandUpAmerica59 3 hours ago in reply to shablon
BS

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shablon 55 minutes ago in reply to StandUpAmerica59
If it is BS prove me wrong, by citing a passage in the Quran which uses the word "kill"!

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Cka Redstate America 5 minutes ago in reply to shablon
Does not the other leg of Islam, the Hadith, say at Tabari 9:69: "Killing unbelievers is a small matter to us"?

Are these not the words of Mohammed?

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aquaroyale 1 day ago in reply to rmacy19
Also they show maps of the region minus Israel. Maybe just a printing error right?

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to aquaroyale
No not a printing error at all, merely the result of the Government of Iran exercising their sovereign right to not recognize the State of Israel. Problem? Cause last time I checked any government could or could not recognize any other government. Or have you now changed International Law with your stupidity?

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Thought Recon 18 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Adham Mahmoud Gofux Youssef ...it's that mirrored sunglasses, arrogant yet impotent bombastic shyte talking without being able to back it up that makes you most proud muzzies of muzzies so amusing. What do you offer the world beside death and oil?

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Thought Recon 18 hours ago in reply to Thought Recon
The latter of which you cave people couldn't extract without "EVIL WESTERNERS". You and yours modern day contribution to the world is weakness, ignorance, hate and death. Those among you that pose as moderates are simply slaves to the weak.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to Thought Recon
I suggest fracking for USA, that will allow you to drink water mixed with black gold!
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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Sharon 17 hours ago in reply to Thought Recon
The world may need Muslim oil but it does not need Muslims. Iran needs to ponder that.

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adultsroom 14 hours ago in reply to Sharon
And the world has shown, time and again, how much they need you. Right?

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to Thought Recon
We offer the world far more than the usury and murder of little children using phosphorus. What about you?
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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Thought Recon 2 hours ago in reply to shablon
Yeah you guys are always bigger in your own minds than in life. It must be the inbreeding.

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to rmacy19
Israel is the one making threats.

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to rmacy19
That is not true!
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2...

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to Alex Nunya
Cyrus the Great was not Muslim.

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John Chik 23 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
Persians have a rich history. Iran not so much

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
You are correct Alex...the Persians as they were known have a rich history and culture! These idiots posting here are brainwashed federally funded educated idiots! They would probably tell you the Shaw of Iran was elected!

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
North Korea threatened and threatened and we did nothing, but now suddenly Iran is the threat...uneducated Americans spewing the media's soundbites without knowing any facts! One day these idiots will awake and realize they've been dupped!

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Sharon 17 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
They are too savages. The may have had culture for eons but they have slipped greatly over the centuries. They behave like stone age primitives. Thanks to the Muslim religion.

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Mark Sochor 5 hours ago in reply to Alex Nunya
Do you know where the name Iran came from? If you did you'd know their history and the Aryan nation of Adolf. A leopard can't change its spots.
And why so condescending? "Tiger" and "Big Guy". I don't even know you and I came to a conclusion about you using those words in this context.

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Private 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
The US, as a colony of Israel, is attacking and occupying multiple nations. Iran is not doing that to anyone. You lie and lie and lie. Just like the "wiped off the map" lie.

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Hikmat Ali 21 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
We all look at Iran as a threat, there is a big misconception when it comes to islam and its not surprising since the media has instilled ideas of muslims as being evil making it ok for us to just go to their country, bomb them and worst of all be numb to the fact that innocent men women and children are dying!!! Bottom line, Iran has never attacked any country. period. The last time it was at war was when U.S.A backed saddam in the gulf war against the iranians in which they had to fight back..

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shablon 17 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
So it is Islam you bastards are scared from. You should be. neither Europeans nor Americans share your dream of ruling the world with usury and fear for all.

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Da Cu 12 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
I find it telling that this whole conversation about nuclear escalation
in the middle east didn't ONCE mention the fact that America knows and
actively supports Israel's nuclear capabilities, and yet they both
claim that Iran would be a reason for middle east nuclear escalation -
God forbid Goldberg asks a question that might make Israel look
bad.....

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JehudahBenIsrael 12 hours ago in reply to Da Cu
Does the poster have any evidence - not guess or speculation, please - to support her/his contention? Israel has, time and again, stated that it would not be the first to introduce nuclear weapons to the region, and has never threatened anyone with the use of such weapons, so why even mention this non-issue....??

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Da Cu 1 hour ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
I'm glad you asked - Read Seymour Hersh's, The Samson Option: Israel's Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy - Public statements mean very little, it's what goes on behind closed doors that really matter. And the fact that a belligerent in your region has nuclear weapons will obviously provoke others to try to develop the technology - Ehud Barak even admitted that if he were Iran he would 100 percent try to obtain nuclear weapons!

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 hour ago in reply to Da Cu
Public statements means very little in some culture, and everything in others. In Muslim-Arab culture, public pronouncements are everything, but of course, in order to appreciate it one has to be versed in the culture of the Middle East and North Africa...!!

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Da Cu 10 minutes ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
You're tellingly avoiding the original debate, which was my contention that it was absurd how Israel's nuclear weapons were not mentioned once in the entire interview, even though one of the main discussions centered around middle east nuclear proliferation. You contested that point (rather tangentially, I might add), and asked for a source pointing out that Israel has considered using nuclear weapons against their neighbors. I then provided one for you. Say thank you, tuck your tail between your legs, and move on sir.

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pofalici 7 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
You go Jehudah. Israel has this tiny piece of land that that they have to be constantly alert against Muslim/Arab aggression when the have all that land they use for nothing but their camels to poop in. The Palestinians could have a home land, it is their own people who are keeping them where they are for propaganda. Iran has NO reason to want to destroy Israel. And, please, I must say that most the Iranian people are not apart of this Persian Jihad from their government. They are good people.

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JehudahBenIsrael 7 hours ago in reply to pofalici
I totally, agree that the public in Iran is imprisoned by the Islamists that it has allowed to rule it since 1979, and neither this poster nor the vast majority of the public worldwide have anything against the Iranian people.

Sadly, however, the people who rule Iran are thugs, eager to wipe Israel off the face of earth and with it any trace of Jewish life and existence in it..., nearly six million Jews...

And, no, we, Jews, shall not permit this again without standing tall and doing all that we can possibly do to avoid going up in smoke from this good earth..., never again!!

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Barney Fife 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
So by your definition - lack of a mutual border - the US has never been at war in Latin and South America, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Europe, or the Far East?

What more nonsense do you have in mind?

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to Barney Fife
I suggest the poster compare apples to apples!!

Israel is a tiny country, really tiny country, one the size of Wales in the UK, with only six million Jews and no natural resources but its people. Furthermore, Israel has never had any interest in regime change, no interest in conquest for its own sake, no interest in the capturing of natural resources or subjugating other people. All that Israel has always wanted to do is live in peace. Sadly, this has not been the case with the Muslim-Arab world, and specific Islamic forces such as Iran. The intent has always been, despite the fact that Israel doesn't even border with Iran, since Islamist has taken over there in 1979, to wipe Israel off the face of earth. Why not simply ask the question, why, and try to relate to the answer...??

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Whites need to create a homeland in Africa and then complain about how they are surrounded by enemies.

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b.retmanski 23 hours ago in reply to Private
Didn't they do that in south africa already?

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AWinLA 23 hours ago in reply to b.retmanski
Indeed they did. No coincidence that Israel was apartheid SA's best friend.

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GregBuls 21 hours ago in reply to b.retmanski
Actually whites were there first. Look it up.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 22 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Really? I do not doubt the aggression towards Israel from the Arabs, but neither can you deny they have NO claim. England partitioned the land when Palestine was a colony of it. Sure they got paid, just like Egypt receives government money from America -.-

Here's the issues with the world and Israel. Violations of Public International Law. violations of Private International law. Violations of Obligations of a State.

And yes I say the world, Israel has three or four large supports world wide (nationally) while Palestine has over 100 by the last vote; if you take the past elections for Palestine to join the UNESCO as being representative of the International Community acceptance of Palestine as having the competence to enter into discussions on the International plane and not any longer be a pure spectator. Did they succeed to become a country? No. Why? America. Does that mean that practically the entire world voted in their favour? No. It just means the UN isn't exactly that Democratic.

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obummerdablunder 22 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
You are one brainwashed fool!

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yumster 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
The drumbeat of annihiliation has been louder in Israel than in Iran. If Israel feels he alone should have nuclear arms in the region, then its leaders must still be living in pre-holocust era. After holocust Israel started arming themslves and they think Iran will stop arming themselves after an attack? That will be the more reason why they will need Nuclear weapons.

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to yumster
Since Israel has never claimed to have such arms, why even bring the subject up? Is the intention, again, to sling more dirt at everything Israel, the national home of the Jewish people, and divert attention from the real evil that is standing at the door...??

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Les Zouazo 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Are you trying to claim Israel doesn't posses nuclear weapons?

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to Les Zouazo
Does the poster knows otherwise? Any evidence, short of hearsay and speculation? And, if none is available, why don't we concentrate at the deadly evil standing in on our doorstep: Iran?

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Steve M 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
This is just sad. I may be more worried about an Iranian nuclear weapon than an Israeli nuclear weapon, but acting as though the former is more of a reality than the latter is the sign of a non-rational person.

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to Steve M
Bomb do not kill people. Ideologies do. Islam wants to destroy all religious competition. They do not even need bombs, to try it.
But if they do get bombs, then it cannot be contained like it was for the last 100 years.
Even as we speak Pakistan is getting too unreliable and we will be forced to get the bombs from them, by force if necessary. We cannot allow those bombs to reach true Muslim hands.

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Steve M 1 day ago in reply to Randome hope
Non-responsive.

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Randome hope 1 day ago in reply to Steve M
Responsive enough for those with ears and eyes. For lefties that will let the world burn better than to protect somebody it is incomprehensible my answer. Look at Syria. What the leftie USA President is doing about? Nothing. Him and the Russians are one hand in killing Syrians.

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to Randome hope
Yes of course, the only action we can take to prevent the world burning down is to light it on fire.

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Randome hope 23 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
War is upon us! It is not us that started this war and it is not a war that it is about to start. It is a very old war (14 centuries) and it will finish with "big weapons" sooner or later. My concern is that those big weapons are not used against us, ever. Capisci?

(Edited by author 23 hours ago)
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GreenMarine 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
So we'll be attacking Pakistan, then? Or howabout Saudi Arabia and its hijackers and madrassa "charities" ?

Face it: Iran is very far from being our top threat.

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Brian Topping 23 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
There is no war on "us". We have spent twelve years at war chasing a bogeyman (Iraqi WMD) and we are done with it.

Maybe you can send some troops from your country to help Jan Brewer with her border war in Arizona. Then we'll talk about your little war in a few years.

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obummerdablunder 21 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
The only ones I hear beating the war drums are hillary, frothy, mittens, obummer and getrich, ready to dupe the American people again! I know Ron Paul is the only one telling the truth about what is really happening, but the braindead are just that, non thinking idiots who need the lamestream media to think and form their arguments for them!

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
These BIG WEAPONS were last used by whom against whom with what situation surrounding them? If I remember correctly. The United States. Japan. World War II. Two normal. Cities. HUGE casualties. Ended the war. Two bombs dropped. Many a life ruined. And you're afraid at Iran doing the same? Have they given indication that they intent to drop a nuclear warhead on Israel? Have they used the exact terms, we plan to drop a nuclear warhead? If not then drop the hypocrisy, you sprout nonsense masked in badly articulated arguments with your central body of argument being speculations and then refute others by criticizing their use of speculations? Cause unless you can find me any. single. mention. by. the entire. Muslim. community. of a wish to wipe Israel off the face of the world. Any mention. From anything that the ENTIRE Muslim community herald as being a Religious doctrine. Any-thing.

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Leon Thor Whyte 22 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
But on the other hand look at Iraq and Afghanistan. As much as we think we should help, often times our style of help makes things much worse.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to Randome hope
-.- please read the Qur'an. Just once. Back to front. Then read the bible. Front to back. Then read the Torah. Then come back.

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lewisifer 1 day ago in reply to Steve M
Or a weasel that cares more about being right than having an open mind.

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to Steve M
Further, Israel has a long history of false flag attacks including those against Americans. Just think, these terrorists committed a false flag attack on American targets to try to trick us in to war against Egypt! Look up the Lavon Affair - they were caught red-handed doing it. Israel is the threat.

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GregBuls 21 hours ago in reply to Private
The average Israeli citizen has an IQ of 115. They'll figure out a way to use anyone they want to use.

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Observer 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
If Israel does not posses nuclear weapons, why it does not let nuclear watchdog agents to verify their claim?

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Brian Topping 23 hours ago in reply to Observer
Something tells me you won't get a response....

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alconnolly 23 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
As others have noted the evidence that Israel has nuclear weapons is thousands of times stronger than Iranian evidence. Please try to have some rationality in your worldview or you will be dismissed immediately.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 22 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/...

http://www.wisconsinproject.or...

http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/aw...

http://nuclearweaponarchive.or...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/worl...

And if you don't believe any of those then just Google countless others; it's internationally accepted as being one of the 5 countries who have not ratified any nuclear arms treaties to have them.

And no. Israel will not formally acknowledge this, why? Because they are. Illegal. Nuclear. Weapons. You know the kind Hussein had? Oh he didn't. And the kind Iran is developing.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Doorstep? Doorstep? What doorstep? Did Iran suddenly expand and encompass all nations in between the two? I didn't know they could do that. Maybe they've started ''Settlement plans'' of their own.

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Nadine Carroll 17 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Yes, Iran expanded and took over Lebanon. Hizbullah was created by Iran, trained by Iranian Revolutionary Guards, receives $100s of millions per year from Iran, and answers to Tehran, not Beirut. They are the de facto masters of Lebanon.

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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to Les Zouazo
Yes, he is. Repeatedly and shamelessly. Just another example of our supposed BFF Israel lying to our faces.

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Thorne Kontos 23 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
Care to point to any conclusive proof that they do?

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Manuela Dill 20 hours ago in reply to Thorne Kontos
Remember the USS Liberty

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mlang461 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
If Israel does not have nuclear weapons, why don't they sign the nonproliferation treaty and allow the IAEA to inspect your countries Nuclear facilities.

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AWinLA 23 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Since John Wayne Gacy never claimed to be a mass murderer, why even question him about the bones in his crawl space?

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Of course they won't soddin' claim to having illegal nuclear weapons; and if they even signed the treaties they'd just be losing their ability to then call upon the Iranian contested nuclear development. I just love how you don't mind the fact that a lot of gas and oil going into Israel went through Egypt, which went through a Military dictatorship held in power by western influences (none of this is conspiracy; the WTO named Mubarak as leader of the year of the middle east six months before his disposition) and yet you complain about a nation three away who has never invaded? Israel has real life enemies at their door, do you think the Egyptian public is going to stand for the crimes committed to Palestinians much longer? You realize Egypt has LONG history of PURE RACISM to Israel. Not something people openly discuss, but Egyptians truly hate Israel. If you want to create fear mongering at least do it at a neighboring country which is pissed off for the years of extra-cheap gas & oil Israel has been receiving due to a corrupt government.

Real evil at their door my ass.

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GregBuls 21 hours ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
"Since Israel has never claimed to have such arms, why even bring the subject up?
Change that to Iran and you have an argument. Everyone knows Israel has had nukes for decades.

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zenwick 22 hours ago in reply to yumster
Yes, Israel does feel (unofficially, of course) that they alone in the region should have nuclear weapons? Why? Because, terrorism aside, the existence of their deterrent capability has maintained peace (more or less) among the nations of the region for the past four decades. It is a large part of the reason Egypt and Jordan abandoned their former state of war with Israel, and agreed to peace treaties.

An Iranian bomb, on the other hand, would be extremely destabilizing. The Saudis would have to have one, and probably Jordan and Egypt - and God forbid, Syria, as well. There is ZERO chance that an Israeli nuke will ever be handed over to terrorists to vaporize a city somewhere. This is patently NOT the case for an Iranian or Arab bomb.

However, you are correct in saying that an Israeli air attack on Iran will have the opposite of the desired effect - which is why the Israelis will never do it. It's crucial that Iran be stopped - but unfortunately, there is no easy way to do it. Most likely, they will get the bomb, and there will be hell to pay.

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Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed 21 hours ago in reply to zenwick
-..- you really really wanna say that? Deterrent capability is okay when Israel has it, but if Iran has it it's destabilizing? Do you seriously seriously believe that a nation that is in such defiance of International law as Israel is really so much better than Jordan, Egypt or ''God Forbid'' Syria? I exclude the Saudi's because I really cannot stand that countries political structure.

Oh and seriously, thank you. That wondrous Peace Treaty did a GREAT deal for Egypt. It had the president Shot. It had Mubarak assume the position of President. It had Egypt under-selling gas and oil to Israel for 30 years. But luckily Israel was still okay, lord forbid if the 80 million Egyptians living right next door have to live under suppression and tyranny. As long as Israel is okay. Right?

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zenwick 18 hours ago in reply to Adham Mahmoud Youssef Ahmed
Yes. Stabilizing when Israel has it, because EVERYONE knows absolutely that the Israeli nukes will only be used as a last resort. They are a true deterrent. Destabilizing when the Iranians have it, because then all the Arab countries who didn't need it against Israel - because they know Israel does not threaten them - will need it to defend themselves against the religious-war-crazies of Iran. Then, sooner or later, a bomb gets smuggled into a harbor and vaporizes a city somewhere, and how do you figure out who did it, and what do you do then? This WILL happen if Iran gets the bomb. And trust me, when an Islamic terrorist nuke blows up New York City, the same vast majority of Muslims who absolutely believe the Mossad leveled the World Trade Center will believe fantasies of how the Mossad nuked the Big Apple, too.

As to your second paragraph, your assertions are seriously nuts. Israel is in no way responsible for the Islamist crazies who shot Sadat. Israel did not pick Mubarak as president or keep him in power. Egypt sold fuel to Israel because Israel paid for it, which was mutually beneficial. Israel is in no way responsible for the still-ongoing suppression and tyranny in Egypt. Frankly, you personally are a whole lot more responsible for the mess in Egypt than the Israelis are. The Israelis just happen to live next door to it.

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zion1king 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
That's fine, you have made your point. So why is it the responsibility of the US to interfere with this dispute between Iran and Israel? Can't Israel take care of itself? I should think so! Israel is militarily equipped to start and finish it's own battles in the Middle East and has proven so time and again.

If Russia or China even joked about possibly attacking the US militarily, do you think Israel would say"Don't worry Big Brother just sit back and we will take care of it"? Not on your life!
Israel has the US in it's back pocket and is bleeding us dry along with all the other parasites that our politicians have allowed to attach themselves to our dwindling economic infrastructure.

It is time for the US to stop meddling in the affairs of other countries and take care of our own back yard! I think the American public is becoming more weary of this drain on our country and it must end!

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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to zion1king
There isn't a dispute between Israel and Iran; not now and not in the past. Israel has no conflict with Iran. It simply stands to defend itself, its citizens and in the process being at the forefront of liberal democracy.

I though the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, Japan and India among other countries adhere to the same concepts and values, don't they....??

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mohammad_allam 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
Israel is not going to wage war for the security of own nation but saving the hegemony over Middle east and right to hunt palestine at will.Otherwise what is the use of nuclear weapon.Was nuclear weapon of USSR destroyed USA?Is the nuclear weapon of pakistan a threat to USA?The real security of Israel is not Israel but USA.And is USA security at risk ?No,not a single person can say that if he knows the little abc of war.

(Edited by author 1 day ago)
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JehudahBenIsrael 1 day ago in reply to mohammad_allam
Israel's "hegemony over the Middle East"? Is the poster out of his mind??!!

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leonidas21 23 hours ago in reply to mohammad_allam
I'll respond to your points one by one:

- Your talk of Israeli hegemony in the ME is pure nonsense. There's no such thing. Israel is the most powerful nation in the ME, militarily. However, this superiority doesn't affect other states, but to deter them from attacking Israel.
- Israel doesn't hunt Palestinians. Israel, in fact, provides them with water, gas, electricity, treats many of them free in its hospitals, and in general targets only the terrorists that murder Israeli civilians.
- USSR and USA had an established MAD mechanism, that luckily was never triggered.
- Yes, the nuclear weapon of Pakistan is a threat to US, and not only. Nuclear Pakistan is one of the worst foreign issues the US has to deal with.
- Israel has managed to survive before any US aid. Israel's greatest victory, in 1967, was achieved without the US. It is true however, that the US contributes to the security of Israel, just as the US contributes to the security of about a dozen states, from Kuwait to South Korea. Israel, however, always fought its own wars, and US troops never had to fight to defend Israel (unlike Kuwait or Korea).
- Yes, nuclear armed Iran puts US security at risk. Read the article.


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Leon Thor Whyte 22 hours ago in reply to leonidas21
They might not hunt them, but they restrict their movements, and they can not leave their borders, and have to face security checks to get anywhere. What do you call a democracy where close to half the population is disenfranchised.....

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mohammad_allam 19 hours ago in reply to leonidas21
You have given your answer by yourself.If nuclear is deterrent against other then Israel has also nuclear weapon,that should be a deterrent against Iran.So,why so much cry on Iran?bcause that going to end the hegemony of Israel and USA in middle East to dictate the term of oil and attack Middle East nations on will like Iraq,Lebnan,Palestine,Syria etc.
Israel put all Palestine in siege like Hitler concentration camp.It seems to me that Israel experimenting the same situation of Hitler in which the jews of Germany passed during Hitlers time by turning entire palestine in concentration camp.Read article of Human rights commision,Gaza blocked report and Turkey flotilla incident.
you are every where just to get oil.Why not impose same war on North Korea as you show with Iran?

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nglaer 1 day ago in reply to JehudahBenIsrael
In what way is Israel a democracy? It rules about 4 million Palestinians who possess zero democratic rights. It's a partial democracy--for about half its people. I wouldn't call that sharing "the same concepts and values" as the US.

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rmacy19 1 day ago in reply to nglaer
What about, for example, the 13 out of the 120 members of the elected Knesset (Israeli legislature) that are Palestinian Arabs?

(Edited by author 1 day ago)
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GreenMarine 1 day ago in reply to rmacy19
They'll many more Arabs in the Knesset once Israel gives Palestinians in the OCCUPIED TERRITORIES a vote.

Every second Israel postpones a two-state solution to continue its land grab, the odds of a two-state solution shrink. Israel can have it all for all I care, but being a freedom-loving American, one person= one vote...

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MayaAyala 1 day ago in reply to GreenMarine
I am now convinced that Obama is a MORON who was told -- over and over again -- that he was "special." The guy is completely out-of-touch with the reality of this situation.

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Brian Topping 22 hours ago in reply to MayaAyala
Gee, that fits the previous president far better than the current one.

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Predictor92 1 day ago in reply to GreenMarine
It's the Palestinians who won't accept a two state for two peoples as the solution for the conflict

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Quinterius 22 hours ago in reply to Predictor92
Sure, what kind of two states are you talking about? Israel gets everything and keeps troops in Palestinian lands for 50 years and takes all the good land and water resources. Just a wonderful deal. What, you think people are stupid?

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Private 23 hours ago in reply to GreenMarine
They are hoping to kill off the Palestinians with their slow-motion genocide.

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Larry Pierce 16 hours ago in reply to Private
What prevents Israel from annihilating all Arabs? Morality. What prevents all Arabs from annihilating Israel? Ineptitude.

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巨大バンカーバスター

U.S. Officials Escalate Warnings to Iran
By John Walcott - Mar 1, 2012 7:25 AM CT

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Obama administration officials are escalating warnings that the U.S. could join Israel in attacking Iran if the Islamic republic doesn’t dispel concerns that its nuclear-research program is aimed at producing weapons.
Four days before Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to arrive in Washington, Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz told reporters the Joint Chiefs of Staff have prepared military options to strike Iranian nuclear sites in the event of a conflict.
Enlarge image
Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's prime minister. Photographer: Scott Eells/Bloomberg
“What we can do, you wouldn’t want to be in the area,” Schwartz told reporters in Washington yesterday.
Pentagon officials said military options being prepared start with providing aerial refueling for Israeli planes and include attacking the pillars of the clerical regime, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its elite Qods Force, regular Iranian military bases and the Ministry of Intelligence and Security. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because Pentagon plans are classified.
“There’s no group in America more determined to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear weapon than the Joint Chiefs of Staff,” Joint Chiefs Chairman Army General Martin Dempsey told the House Budget Committee yesterday. “I can assure you of that.”
Separately, unnamed U.S. officials told the Washington Post that U.S. military planners are increasingly confident that sustained attacks with the Air Force’s 30,000-pound (13,608 kilograms) “bunker-buster” bombs could put Iran’s deeply buried uranium-enrichment plant at Fordo out of commission.
Meetings Failing
The latest American warnings of possible military action against Iran come after meetings between top Israeli and Obama administration officials failed to resolve differences over when an attack would become necessary, according to officials of both countries who have participated in the discussions.
Most Israelis oppose a unilateral attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities if it doesn’t have U.S. support, the Globes financial daily said, citing a survey conducted by the Washington-based Brookings Institute. Only 19 percent of Israelis support their country striking Iran without U.S. backing, Globes said.
Will to Act
“Because there is uncertainty about the administration’s will to act in the Israelis’ minds, and more importantly in the Iranians’ minds, it’s very important that we don’t just say that all options are on the table, but also show that they are, by some overt means,” Representative Mike Rogers, a Michigan Republican who heads the House Intelligence Committee and was one of the recent visitors to Israel, said in a phone interview.
Other U.S. officials spoke only on condition of anonymity because the discussions have been private and because the administration is trying to reassure Israel and its American supporters of its determination while also tamping down fears that are helping drive up oil prices.
Iranian leaders are using the bellicose talk to draw voters for tomorrow’s parliamentary elections, the first since a disputed vote in 2009 that sparked mass riots.
The ballot “will be a slap in the face of enemies of the nation,” Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on his website yesterday, urging voters to “stand tall and show your determination” by taking part. Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani last week called the election “a big step to preserve the dignity of the Iranian nation.” Israel declined to comment.
Drawing the Line
About 48 million Iranians are eligible to vote and more than 3,400 candidates have been cleared to compete for the 290 seats in the assembly, known as the Majlis.
The most significant difference between the U.S. and Israel, said American officials, is where to draw the line on Iran’s atomic program. Parliament doesn’t have power over the country’s foreign policy and the outcome of the race is unlikely to affect Iran’s foreign policy.
Obama administration officials have suggested that the trigger for military action should be a decision by Khamenei to enrich uranium beyond a current level of 20 percent that supports nuclear-power generation to a weapons-grade level 85 or 90 percent.
U.S. and Israeli intelligence officials said they agree that such a decision would be hard to detect until sometime after it had been made.
Israel is more concerned about Iran’s missile and nuclear- weapon technology programs while the U.S. is focused on the Persian Gulf nation’s uranium-enrichment activities, the Israeli officials said.
Targets Measured
Iranian nuclear facilities at Natanz and Fordo would be difficult to destroy because they were built to withstand air attacks. Israel, which has the 5,000 pound GBU-28 bomb, said its ability to strike is underestimated, according to the officials.
Iran’s warhead and weaponization facilities at the military complexes at Parchin and Bidganeh and elsewhere are more vulnerable, at least for now, the Israeli officials said, according to Americans who met with them.
Iran barred International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors from the Parchin site in February, and a still-unexplained Nov. 14 explosion at the Bidganeh missile base killed an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps general.
The Israelis said what worries them is that Iran could complete work on warheads, triggers, neutron reflectors and the other ingredients of a nuclear weapon or move that work to harder-to-hit facilities.
Intelligence Report
A recent U.S. intelligence analysis concluded that if Iran can get its centrifuges to produce weapons-grade uranium and assemble in different locations the 33-44 pounds of material needed for a weapon, a delivery system and other necessary components, it could build an atomic weapon in two months, said two U.S. officials who have read the analysis.
Further underscoring the timing issue, U.S. and Israeli officials have concluded that Iran may be content with a computer test of a new weapon rather than detonating one in the desert, thanks in part to confidence inspired by what they said is significant North Korean assistance. These officials also spoke only on the basis of anonymity because intelligence matters are classified.
The American officials said their Israeli counterparts are less inclined than the Obama administration is to give the toughening economic sanctions on Iran more time to work for a second reason: They are skeptical that sanctions can ever persuade Iran to abandon its pursuit of an atomic weapon.
Israel’s Role
In different meetings with American counterparts in Washington, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Tamir Pardo, the head of Israel’s foreign- intelligence service Mossad, argued that only Israeli military action prevented Iraq and Syria from going nuclear.
They also said witnessing the dictators of non-nuclear Iraq and Libya toppled by or with Western assistance, coupled with a deep sense that Shiite Muslim Iran is entitled to a weapon that Christians, Jews, Sunnis, Hindus, Russia and China all possess, may reinforce Iran’s intentions of continuing to develop a weapon.
High-level visitors have included Barak, Pardo, Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA Director David Petraeus, Dempsey, U.S. National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, White House adviser Dennis Ross, Rogers and C.A. “Dutch” Ruppersberger, the ranking Democrat on the U.S. House Intelligence Committee.
U.S. Resolve Questioned
These talks have failed to dispel Israeli doubts that President Barack Obama is willing to do whatever is necessary to keep nuclear weapons out of Iranian hands, the American officials said. Barak described a meeting with Panetta yesterday only as “important and useful.”
Netanyahu isn’t convinced Obama will alter his emphasis on sanctions as a mean to change Iranian behavior, U.S. officials said.
Responding to a question during a House Appropriations subcommittee budget hearing yesterday about concerns Israel may attack Iran, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton responded: “Let’s focus on economic sanctions that we have the world behind right now. We believe we’re making progress on the sanctions front.”
U.S. Policies
Iran doesn’t believe the U.S. has the resolution to intervene again in the region, according to the Israeli officials, who cited Washington’s abandonment of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and the limited support given Muammar Qaddafi’s overthrow in Libya. They said Washington succumbed to domestic political pressure in exits from Iraq and Afghanistan.
Finally, the Israelis told some U.S. officials that the administration’s failure to retaliate against Iran for plotting to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the U.S. and its inability to get Egypt to free the son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, who is one of 16 American pro-democracy activists charged with operating without government permission, has reinforced an image of American weakness.
Some Republicans share those doubts. Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a Republican member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the Obama administration should be “more clear” in its determination to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons capability.
“The intelligence community is uncertain about Iranian intentions,” Graham told reporters at a news conference yesterday. “You don’t need to be Sherlock Holmes to figure this out.”
To contact the reporter on this story: John Walcott in Washington at jwalcott9@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Silva at msilva34@bloomberg.net
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チャイナの経常黒字が激減する

China Shifts Out of Dollars, World Doesn't End

ByTOM ORLIK

China is shifting sharply away from U.S. dollars and the world hasn't ended―yet.

The threat of a disorderly unwinding of global trade imbalances kept economists awake at night until the financial crisis gave them bigger things to worry about. But China's surplus with the rest of the world has dissipated. The current-account surplus as a share of gross domestic product fell to about 2.7% in 2011, down from a high of 10.1% in 2007.

As a corollary of that, growth in China's foreign-exchange reserves has slowed. The share allocated to U.S. dollars has fallen, too. Data from the U.S. Treasury suggests the dollar share of China's $3.2 trillion stash fell to 54% in June 2011, down from 65% in 2010, and a high of 74% in 2006. In the 12 months to June 2011, dollar purchases accounted for just 15% of additions to China's reserves.

That confirms hints from Beijing and Europe over the past year that China has ramped up purchases of European debt. Last month, Premier Wen Jiabao said Europe would be a main avenue for diversifying China's reserves. Other highly rated sovereigns like Australia and Canada are also benefiting.

So, China has shrunk its external surplus and shifted away from dollar debt, but the sky has not fallen. The dollar has not collapsed. U.S Treasury yields remain low and Timothy Geithner continues to finance the deficit without kowtowing to Beijing.

Still, don't yet put away those "end is nigh" placards. China has achieved external balance only at the expense of exacerbating internal imbalance. In 2010, investment contributed an unprecedented 48.6% of China's GDP, up from 43.9% in 2008. That's substantially higher than any other major economy, including the Asian tigers during their period of rapid growth. Commodity imports driven by surging investment has been a key factor in wiping out China's external surplus.

The current level of capital spending is unsustainable. Stories of wasteful investment abound. The goldilocks scenario is that China can transition smoothly from investment to consumption as a driver of growth, with imports of consumer goods replacing commodities. If that doesn't happen though, falling investment will undermine GDP and import growth―China's current-account surplus would come roaring back to life and it will be time to get those doomsday placards out again.
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伊勢平次郎

Author:伊勢平次郎
Author: Nobuyoshi Ozaki

A long forty six years have passed since I stepped on to American soil. I have had various odd jobs in the past until I recently retired. Examples include working with Steven Spielberg as assistant director in a film called "1941." I was supervisor and later became Public Relation representative for Toyota Group - USA. My last occupation was a Senior Research analyst working in Silicone Valley for a major news paper from Tokyo, Japan. My spouse, Christine is a flight attendant, traveling often to the Middle East and Africa. We have spent three quarters of our life together as world adventurers. This photo was taken in Argentina. We now live in swampy Louisiana.

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