ABC political analyst: IRS scandal emanates from the White House – National Policy & Issues |

While appearing as a guest on KABC\’s \”McIntyre in the Morning,\” ABC political analyst Trey Hardin said Tuesday that he believes the IRS scandal emanates from the west wing of the White House.

“I will tell you this on the IRS front. I’ve worked in this town for over 20 years in the White House and on Capitol Hill and I can say with a very strong sense of certainty that there are people very close to this president that not only knew what the IRS were doing but authorized it,\” he said, being careful not to blame Obama directly for the scandal.

\”It simply just does not happen at an agency level like that without political advisers likely in the West Wing certainly connected to the president’s ongoing campaign organization,” he added.

Hardin was not the only person to make the charge.

Newsmax reported Tuesday that Cleta Mitchell, one of Washington\’s most respected elections attorneys, said that she had \”tangible proof that high-ranking IRS officials in Washington were fully aware of the agency\’s campaign to target conservative groups for heightened scrutiny, despite their denials.\”

She also believes the president knew about the practice.

\”If proven, she said, it could be an impeachable offense,\” Newsmax said.

\”There were nearly 100 groups across the country that got the very egregious set of letters from the IRS that were almost identical and they came from offices all over the country so I know of at least 85 to 90, maybe more, organizations,\” she told Newsmax.

\”I\’ve thought for some time that this is politically motivated and that\’s the reason it was happening. And, as I said, I\’ve been doing this for more than 20 years and I\’ve never seen anything like this until 2009, 2010. And the only thing that changed was we had a different administration,\” she added.

While the recently released inspector general\’s report on the controversy blamed “ineffective management,” Rush Limbaugh said Tuesday it was an effort to gather information on conservative groups for a progressive Soros-funded media outlet.

\”They were collecting it to pass it on to ProPublica, a left-wing journalism nonprofit. And ProPublica was then telling the world with reports to journalists how fraudulent these conservative nonprofits were and how much of the money that was being raised for the 2012 election was illegal. Amazing,\” he said.

The powerful House Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on the scandal this Friday, CNN reported.

via ABC political analyst: IRS scandal emanates from the White House – National Policy & Issues |

The Plight of Coptic Christian in Egypt | Tavern Keepers

The Coptic Christians have become the target of al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood after the coup that toppled the government of Muhammad Morsi. Days after the coup, al-Qaeda’s Egyptian leader stated that the action was a “Crusader campaign” led by the Coptic Pope in order to create a Coptic state in Egypt. While there were attacks on churches before the coup, now the attacks have increased and the black flag of al Qaeda has been raised outside of some. For instance, hundreds of Muslim Brotherhood supporters protested outside of Mar Guirgis Church in Sohag with the al Qaeda flag chanting “Islamic (state) despite secularists (wishes).”

According to Alaa Saddiq, Secretary of a Salafist political party in Egypt:

We are waiting for victory from God.. We are fighting a war of identity against Christians and secularists who wanted bloodshed and declared war on Islam.”

While Al-Jazeera was covering the events in Egypt, a Libyan man named Tamar Rashad called into a show and made the following statement:

“I want to offer the good news to [Pope] Tawadros that, Allah willing, the day is coming when no Copt will ever again tread the ground of Egypt—and no churches. We will no longer allow churches to exist.” When the TV host appeared to protest, Rashad interrupted him saying, “It’s already decided, take your cameras and go to the churches and you’ll see what’s going to happen soon, Allah willing.”

The spiritual father of the Muslim Brotherhood, Sheikh Yusif al-Qaradawi accused the Egyptian military of recruiting Christians to kill innocent Muslims.

According to popular journalist Ibrahim Eissa, who actually took a stand by calling out Islamists on the violence:

“The Christians have suffered in Egypt, over the course of 2 ½ years. Their churches have been burned, their children killed. The Maspero Massacre occurred, where several Copts were slain. Catastrophic fatwas appeared, calling them infidels and inciting against them…. No one has suffered as much as they. Today, if any Christian attempts to join a protest, he does so at the risk of defying dozens of fatwas calling for his death and decapitation and the burning of churches, especially in Upper Egypt.”


via The Plight of Coptic Christian in Egypt | Tavern Keepers.

Happy Hankukkah!


Chanukkah, the Jewish festival of rededication, also known as the festival of lights, is an eight day festival beginning on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev.

Chanukkah is probably one of the best known Jewish holidays, not because of any great religious significance, but because of its proximity to Christmas. Many non-Jews (and even many assimilated Jews!) think of this holiday as the Jewish Christmas, adopting many of the Christmas customs, such as elaborate gift-giving and decoration. It is bitterly ironic that this holiday, which has its roots in a revolution against assimilation and the suppression of Jewish religion, has become the most assimilated, secular holiday on our calendar.
The Story

The story of Chanukkah begins in the reign of Alexander the Great. Alexander conquered Syria, Egypt and Palestine, but allowed the lands under his control to continue observing their own religions and retain a certain degree of autonomy. Under this relatively benevolent rule, many Jews assimilated much of Hellenistic culture, adopting the language, the customs and the dress of the Greeks, in much the same way that Jews in America today blend into the secular American society.

More than a century later, a successor of Alexander, Antiochus IV was in control of the region. He began to oppress the Jews severely, placing a Hellenistic priest in the Temple, massacring Jews, prohibiting the practice of the Jewish religion, and desecrating the Temple by requiring the sacrifice of pigs (a non-kosher animal) on the altar. Two groups opposed Antiochus: a basically nationalistic group led by Mattathias the Hasmonean and his son Judah Maccabee, and a religious traditionalist group known as the Chasidim, the forerunners of the Pharisees (no direct connection to the modern movement known as Chasidism). They joined forces in a revolt against both the assimilation of the Hellenistic Jews and oppression by the Seleucid Greek government. The revolution succeeded and the Temple was rededicated.
According to tradition as recorded in the Talmud, at the time of the rededication, there was very little oil left that had not been defiled by the Greeks. Oil was needed for the menorah (candelabrum) in the Temple, which was supposed to burn throughout the night every night. There was only enough oil to burn for one day, yet miraculously, it burned for eight days, the time needed to prepare a fresh supply of oil for the menorah. An eight day festival was declared to commemorate this miracle. Note that the holiday commemorates the miracle of the oil, not the military victory: Jews do not glorify war.
Source: JUDAISM 101