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Islamism: The Political Movement
November 11, Trinity Channel

​"The 60-year U.S.-Turkish Alliance is Over"
November 10, Aydınlık (Turkey)

Murky Details Surround Crash of Russian Plane over Sinai
November 8, CTV News

Predictions for Turkey's Election
October 29, Mackenzie Institute

"The Iran Deal has the makings of a catastrophe"
September 11, Mackenzie Institute

Assessing the Iran Deal
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Why the Paris Massacre Will Have Limited Impact

by Daniel Pipes  •  November 17, 2015  •  Philadelphia Inquirer

The murder of some 127 innocents in Paris by a jihadi gang on Friday has again shocked the French and led to another round of solidarity, soul searching, and anger. In the end, however, Islamist violence against Westerners boils down to two questions: How much will this latest atrocity turn public opinion? And how much will it further spur the Establishment to deny reality?

As these questions suggest, the people and the professionals are moving in opposite directions, the former to the right, the latter to the left. In the end, this clash much reduces the impact of such events on policy.

Public opinion moves against Islamists specifically and Islam more generally when the number of deaths is large enough. America's three thousand dead on 9/11 stands out as by far the largest mortality but many other countries have had their equivalent – the Bali bombings for Australia, the railroad bombing for Spain, the Beslan school massacre for Russia, the transportation bombings for Britain.

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Will Turks Accept the Election Results?

by Daniel Pipes  •  November 3, 2015

[N.B.: NRO titled this analysis "Turkey's Election Results Stink of Fraud"]

Like other observers of Turkish politics, I was stunned on Nov. 1 when the ruling Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, or AKP) was reported to have increased its share of the national vote since the last round of elections in June 2015 by 9 percent and its share of parliamentary seats by 11 percent.

The polls had consistently shown the four major parties winning about the same number of seats as in June. This made intuitive sense; they represent mutually hostile outlooks (Islamist, leftist, Kurdish, nationalist), making substantial movement between them in under five months highly unlikely. That about one in nine voters switched parties defies reason.

The AKP's huge increase gave it back the parliamentary majority it had lost in the June 2015 elections, promising President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan a semi-legal path to the dictatorial powers he aspires to.

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Ending a Century of Palestinian Rejectionism

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 27, 2015  •  Washington Times

Palestinians are on the wrong track and will not get off it until the outside world demands better of them.

News comes every year or two of a campaign of violence spurred by Palestinian political and religious leaders spreading wild-eyed conspiracy theories (the favorite: Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem is under threat). A spasm of unprovoked violence against Israelis then follows: rocket attacks from Gaza, car-rammings in Israel proper, stone-throwing in the West Bank, street stabbings in Jerusalem. Eventually the paroxysm peters out, only to start up again not too much later.

True, these bouts of violence bring some gains to the Palestinians; in the United Nations, in faculty lounges, and on the streets of Western cities they win support against Israel. Each round ends, however, with the Palestinians in a worse place in terms of dead and wounded, buildings destroyed and an economy in tatters.

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Turkey Is on the Path to Rogue Dictatorship

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 26, 2015  •  National Review Online

Should President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's AK Party not win a majority of seats in the Nov. 1 vote, the mainstream media hold that his power will diminish. The headline of a much-circulated Reuters analysis sums up this view: "Erdoğan seen with little choice but to share power after Turkish vote." Agence France-Presse predicts that winning less than half the seats "would again force [the AKP] to share power or call yet another election." Almost identically, Middle East Online sees this situation forcing the AKP "to share power or organise yet another election." And so on, almost invariably including the words "share power."

But what if Erdoğan chooses not to share power? He then has two options. If the results are close, election fraud is a distinct possibility; reports suggest sophisticated software (think Volkswagen) to skew the results.

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Erdoğan Leads Turkey to the Precipice

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 17, 2015  •  Australian

The Republic of Turkey is undergoing possibly its greatest crisis since the founding of the state nearly a century ago. Present trends suggest worse to come as a long-time Western ally evolves into a hostile dictatorship.

The crisis results primarily from the ambitions of one very capable and sinister individual, Turkey's 61-year old president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. A career politician who previously served four years as the mayor of Turkey's megacity, Istanbul, and then eleven years as the country's prime minister, he forwards two goals hitherto unknown in the republic: dictatorship and full application of the Shari'a, Islam's law code.

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The One-Minute Guide to Obama's Foreign Policy

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 13, 2015

We who follow U.S. foreign policy, and especially the Middle East, sometimes get asked whether Barack Obama is a community organizing naïf way out of his depth or a brilliant ideologue who knows exactly what he is doing. Is he inept or purposeful? Does he see his foreign policy as a failure or a success? My reply:

Not one or the other but a bit of both. He is a leftist who sees the imperialism, militarism, and corporate greed of the United States as a menace to the outside world. He conceives of his role being to reach out to enemies, reduce America's cowboy ways, make it one of the pack, and render the world a safer place.

But he is also the president on whose watch we find not security but anarchy and despotism. Reduced American influence has led to revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, renewed civil wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, conflagrations in Libya, Yemen, and Syria, Russian military intervention, and unfathomable future troubles from a nuclear Iran.

In other words, Obama's policy is purposeful but the consequences are not. (October 13, 2015)

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Making Sense of the Ankara Bombing

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 12, 2015

[N.B.: NRO title is "Why We Should Assume Erdogan Played a Role in the Ankara Bombing."]

It's an especially delicate time in Turkish politics, between a first round of voting in June that resulted in a hung parliament and a second round scheduled for Nov. 1. The frenzied run-up to the latter election has witnessed growing violence against the country's Kurdish minority, starting with an attack in July on peace marchers, leaving 33 dead; a spate of Kurdish revenge attacks on policemen and soldiers; an entire Kurdish town, Cizre, placed under siege; and Kurds responded by declaring autonomous zones.

Then, on Oct. 10, came the worst act of violence in modern Turkish history, a double bombing outside Ankara's central railroad station that killed at least 105 marchers for Turkish-Kurdish peace and injured over 400. No one claimed responsibility for the assault, prompting politicians and analysts – myself included – to engage in intense speculation about the perpetrators' identity and purpose.

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50 Years of Dangerous Immigration Legislation

by Daniel Pipes  •  October 3, 2015

Unlike other government decisions – say tax rates or defining the nature of marriage – those affecting immigration are both irreversible and profound. In that light, today marks a half-century since the passage of one of the least heralded but most significant pieces of legislation in American history.

That would be the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965, known as the Hart-Celler Act, which ended the highly restrictive terms of the prior 1924 legislation, opening the United States to larger and more varied immigration.

Put in numerical terms, according to the Pew Research Center, the United States was 84 percent white, 11 percent black, 4 percent Hispanic, and 1 percent Asian in 1965; today, it is 62 percent white, 12 percent black, 18 percent Hispanic and 6 percent Asian, and 2 percent other. The center projects that in 2065, the population will be 46 percent white, 13 percent black, 24 percent Hispanics, 14 percent Asian, and 3 percent other.

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Middle East Provocations and Predictions

by Daniel Pipes  •  September 9, 2015  •  Mackenzie Institute

The Middle East stands out as the world's most volatile, combustible, and troubled region; not coincidentally, it also inspires the most intense policy debates – think of the Arab-Israeli conflict or the Iran deal. The following tour d'horizon offers interpretations and speculations on Iran, ISIS, Syria-Iraq, the Kurds, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel, and Islamism, then concludes with some thoughts on policy choices. My one-sentence conclusion: some good news lies under the onslaught of misunderstandings, mistakes, and misery.


Iran is Topic No. 1 these days, especially since the nuclear deal the six great powers reached with its rulers in Vienna on July 14. The "Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action" seeks to bring Tehran in from the cold, ending decades of hostility and inducing Iran to become a more normal state. In itself, this is an entirely worthy endeavor.

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A Tiny Silver Lining in the Otherwise Bad Iran Deal

by Daniel Pipes  •  September 9, 2015  •  Philadelphia Inquirer

I despise the July 14 Vienna deal because it could do incalculable damage to the United States and its allies. That said, I find a tiny silver lining in the possibility that it could, if everything goes just right, end up hurting the Iranian regime more than its enemies.

The drawbacks of the "Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action" are so numerous that listing them requires more space than the 159-page treaty itself. In very brief, the JCPOA offers the tyrants in Tehran over the next 10-15 years more money, more legitimacy, more arms, and an approved path to nuclear weaponry. As an Israeli analysis sums up the problem, "the agreement unilaterally and unconditionally grants Iran everything it has been seeking without any viable quid pro quo."

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Are Muslims Fatalists?

by Daniel Pipes  •  Fall 2015  •  Middle East Quarterly

"According to God, your age is written on your forehead."
An Arabic proverb

"Sit on a beehive and say this is fate."
Another Arabic proverb[1]

After a building crane fell into Mecca's Grand Mosque on Sep. 11, 2015, killing 114 and injuring 394, the mosque's Imam Abdul Rahman Al Sudais visited the injured and, as he met each one, told them, "This is God's will."[2]

Likewise, in February 2004, after a stampede killed at least 244 hajjis (pilgrims) in Mina, a town near Mecca, Saudi hajj minister Iyad Madani oxymoronically responded: "All precautions were taken to prevent such an incident, but this is God's will."[3]

And, when in July 1990, pilgrims fell from a bridge over the crowded al-Mu'aysim Passageway, a panic ensued, and about 1,400 hajjis lost their lives, King Fahd (r. 1982-2005) neither assumed responsibility for the bridge's faulty construction nor apologized to the families. Instead, he attributed the event to "God's irresistible will."[4]

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Sweden's Populist Surge

by Daniel Pipes  •  August 26, 2015  •  Washington Times

According to the most recent poll, the innocuously-named but ferociously anti-establishment Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna or SD) has the largest support of any political party in Sweden. This news has potentially momentous implications not just for Sweden but for all Europe.

Sweden is a special place. One of the richest and most peaceful countries in the world (it has not been engaged in armed conflict for two centuries), until recently it was a remarkably homogenous society where socialism, with its optimistic assumption that people are born good and circumstances make them bad, worked and the government enjoyed great prestige. Swedish pride in the country's accomplishments translates into an ethical superiority symbolized by the oft-heard claim to be a "moral superpower."

This heritage has also inspired an intolerance of dissent, however; "Be quiet, follow the consensus, let the bureaucrats carry it out." The country has become so notorious for its stifling faux-unanimity that I actually heard a Dane recently ask at a public forum, "Why has Sweden turned into the North Korea of Scandinavia?"

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If Tehran Turns Down the Nuclear Deal

by Daniel Pipes  •  August 20, 2015  •  Washington Times

Whether congressional Democrats accept or reject Barack Obama's Iran deal has great importance and is rightly the focus of international attention. But there's another debate taking place over the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that may be even more critical: the one in Iran. Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, the country's decision maker, just might reject the laboriously worked-out agreement that he helped negotiate.

On one level, that makes no sense. As a plethora of analyses have established, the Vienna deal is enormously favorable to the Islamic Republic of Iran, legitimizing its nuclear research, assuring its future nuclear weapons program, helping its economy, and boosting its aggressive international goals. These advantages would make it appear absurd for Khamenei not to accept the deal. Plus, most Iranians celebrate the accord.

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A "Pig" Incident in Jerusalem

by Daniel Pipes  •  July 28, 2015  •  Israel Hayom

As most non-Muslim visitors to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem can attest, groups of screaming female banshees accost them, yelling Allahu akbar and other Islamic slogans, making for a highly unpleasant experience. (Called the Murabitat, or the Steadfast, they are funded by an Islamist organization.)

On schedule, this recurred on July 23, when a Jewish group visited the holy area; worse, the banshees followed the group outside the Temple Mount and into a surrounding street, harassing and threatening the group.

Irritated, a female member of the Jewish group, Avia Morris, 20, responded into a video camera sent out by the Jerusalem Information Center (Markaz A'lam al-Quds) with two words: "Muhammad khanzeer," Arabic for "Muhammad is a pig," obviously a very pungent insult.

The next day, Israeli police arrested Morris. Despite this, the video went viral and may have contributed to Sunday's riots on the Temple Mount.

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Dante, Chaucer, Shakespeare – and Me

by Daniel Pipes  •  July 22, 2015

Two associate professors of political science at San Diego State University, Emanuele Saccarelli and Latha Varadarajan, argue in their new book, Imperialism Past and Present (Oxford University Press), that "western [sic] imperialism did not end with the close of colonialism, but continues to define international relations today." In support of this hackneyed leftist argument, the authors rely, almost predictably, on Edward Said. In turgid academese, they explain The Master's views (on pp. 68-69):

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