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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 19, 2013/ 11 Tammuz, 5773

NSA is next in a long line of Obama scandals

By Jack Kelly




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Were the leaks about the government's collection of data on our telephone calls, credit card transactions, and emails orchestrated by Obama aides to distract attention from other scandals?

More than a few seasoned political observers suspect this.

Snooping by the National Security Agency can at least partly be blamed on former President George W. Bush, and the furor has pushed the Benghazi and IRS scandals off the front page, they say.

True. But I doubt any of his aides think the president benefits by having comedian Stephen Colbert describe Mr. Obama as "a tyrannical despot who ignores all the rules," and the New York Times declare he's lost all credibility.

"We wanted a president that listens to all Americans -- now we have one," joked comedian Jay Leno. But few liberals are laughing. Dismaying his base is a high price for the president to pay for distraction that likely will only be temporary.

Serial scandals impose a cumulative cost. As each new scandal provides more reasons for doubting the veracity of officials, some who accepted administration explanations for earlier scandals become skeptics.

The older scandals will grow or shrink depending on whether pertinent new facts are brought to light. If more are, the newer scandals heighten concern about them.

NSA leaker Edward Snowden strikes me as sincerely motivated -- though his flight to Hong Kong and the fact that his leak so closely followed disclosure of massive Chinese cyber spying could suggest a darker motive.

Mr. Snowden also strikes me as immature and naive. Even if his heart is pure, we shouldn't take what he says at face value. Neither he nor Glenn Greenwald, the author of the exposé, "have a clue how this thing works," said Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

There are "two major, inseparable issues" in assessing NSA surveillance, said Andrew McCarthy, who prosecuted the kingpin in the first World Trade Center bombing. "(a) Is the awesome power to collect information essential for national security in light of our current threat environment, and (b) even if it is, should we trust the government to wield this power both lawfully and prudently?"

The answer to (a) probably is yes, Mr. McCarthy thinks. For most Americans, the answer to (b) is no.

This could have tragic consequences. NSA mining of telephone metadata (numbers called and duration of calls) poses no threat to our privacy, and can detect suspicious patterns.

If PRISM, which does grab content from emails, is restricted to foreign nationals abroad, as James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, claims, then it's a valuable tool.

But both Mr. Clapper and NSA Director Keith Alexander have misled Congress about the scope of surveillance activities, so their credibility is suspect.

Attorney General Eric Holder's own dissumulations, and his highly selective approach to prosecuting leaks do not inspire confidence.

NSA analysts eavesdropped on people with whom they had personal grudges, Mr. Greenwald claims. If true, this is chilling.

So is this: Mr. Obama is putting together a campaign database that "will have information about everything on every individual," said Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif.

President Obama may have cast doubt where it is unwarranted when he claimed, falsely, that "every member of Congress has been briefed on this program." The Patriot Act requires only that party leaders and members of the Intelligence committees be informed, which is prudent.

A secret told to too many doesn't remain secret for long. When they say they're obeying the law, officials could be telling the truth. But it's hard to trust those who've deceived us so often.

"NSA intelligence gathering is President Obama's Katrina," said Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin. "While the accusations may be ignorant and unfair, it nevertheless becomes the final blow that drains support from independents and his base...This is a perfect example of how an abundance of hubris and dearth of honesty cripple a president."

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JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration.

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