Monday, May 11, 2020

Iran executes Christians, including teenagers, for leaving Islam - Media is silent to avoid damaging Islam's image

Iran executes Christians, including teenagers, for leaving Islam - Media is silent to avoid damaging Islam's image

As part of implementing Sharia laws the Iranian parliament voted in favour of a bill, entitled "Islamic Penal Code", which codify the death penalty for any male Iranian who leaves the religion of Islam. Women would get life imprisonment. The majority in favour of the law was overwhelming: 196 votes for, with just seven against.  

Under this law, Christians are brutally persecuted in Iran. 

The media and the United Nations are turning a blind eye to the ethnic cleansing of non-Muslim minorities in Iran.

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Christians in Iran are not allowed to practice their religion publicly. Consequently, church services in Persian (Iran’s national language) are not allowed. 

Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the Assyrian community in Iran totaled approximately 200,000 people. However, since then many have fled and in 2015 only 32,000 Assyrians were left in the country, mostly in Tehran. 
Since 1979 Khomeini’s regime has executed tens of thousands of Iranians. The regime has killed thousands of Americans. This regime hasn’t changed in 40 years, 
Germany, Britain and France should join the US and impose sanctions against the sharia regime in Iran.

Branding: Democrats Are the Shutdown Party, Trump the Champion of Working People

Branding: Democrats Are the Shutdown Party, Trump the Champion of Working People

May 8, 2020 Updated: May 10, 2020
In politics, how you brand yourself determines your fate. In the face of a national crisis, with people growing increasingly restless and angry, incredibly, the Democrats have branded themselves the party of the shutdown.
President Donald Trump, fighting to reopen the economy, has become firmly the president of working people.
In the market place, branding is everything. Apple, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, and Disney trade off their brand, not just their products. In the marketplace of ideas—politics—brands are everything as well.
For decades, coming out of the late 1800s and into the Great Depression, Democrats were able to brand themselves the party of the working man. Meanwhile, the term “Country Club Republicans” saddled Republicans. That branding benefited the Democrats for decades and helped them hold onto the House of Representatives for 38 straight years.
The Democrats still claim they are for the working man, but their big government politics for the last several decades belie that and are changing their brand—perhaps irrevocably.
Recall that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) claimed that welfare payments were proof that government is working. Former President Barack Obama famously declared that you can create a working majority of people dependent on government. He then spent eight years building that coalition of dependency. Today, the largest block of the Democrat party, the Sanders–Warren block, firmly believes in socialist or semi-socialist policies.
The problem for Democrats is that Americans, on balance, are not that far left. Americans grew tired of the weak economy that government created from 2008 to 2016 and the resultant lack of jobs.
Enter Trump.
He immediately eschewed some of the Republican dogma and pushed a trade agenda that included tariffs. In doing that, Trump appealed to workers in the Rust Belt, states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Michigan, like no Republican since Ronald Reagan in 1984. Trump won those states, and that so-called “inside straight” elected Trump president.
Since his election, Trump pushed through policies such as tax reform and deregulation that lit up the economy. Although the Democrats shouted that he was helping the rich, the jobs went to the lower and middle class like few times in the last 100 years.
As a result of fostering so many jobs for so many, Trump’s stature among the working class jumped. It included historically high ratings among blacks and Latinos—each in the mid-30s. Trump clearly was favored by working men and women far more than any of his Republican predecessors except for Reagan.
Then COVID-19 came along.
Given the disease’s unprecedented nature, the parties struggled with initial policy choices. Trump pushed restrictions before the Democrats, and he ultimately embraced a partial shutdown of the economy. Today, however, all has changed. The frustration across the United States with the shutdown is palpable and is measured by a growing number of protests and businesses opening in defiance of government orders.
Nevertheless, in their unrelenting desire to oppose all things Trump, the Democrats have more than embraced the shutdown as a matter of dogma. A review of their talking points and social media makes it plain to see that the Democrats (a) have now branded themselves the Party of the Shutdown and (b) are claiming the Republicans are heartless for wanting to open the economy and risk lives.
Americans, however, have seen the numbers. They understand the risks to a significant degree. They also know that COVID-19 isn’t the only issue. COVID-19 was added to the list of medical problems facing America; it didn’t replace them.
In other words, in my view, the majority of Americans no longer favor shutdown policies as demanded by the Democrats, from Pelosi in Washington to Gov. Gavin Newsom in California, to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan and Mayor Bill de Blasio in New York.
Americans want solutions and the right to earn a living. They now want to shut down “shutdown politics,” and they have a clear champion.
Trump is unequivocally the leader of the “open the economy” cause. Don’t forget that he pushed aid while Democrats held it up. Overall, the president has clearly branded himself as the advocate for the worker, the small business person, and employers everywhere.
Overall, the Democrats’ shutdown politics are perceived as negative while Trump’s cause is hopeful. That is behind Trump’s recent rise in the polls and why he is viewed as better than Biden on jobs and how to handle COVID-19.
Finally, when it comes to deciding for whom to vote in November, hopeful beats the negative. Championing jobs beats shutdown politics. That’s just political branding 101.
Thomas Del Beccaro is an acclaimed author, speaker, Fox News, Fox Business, and Epoch Times opinion writer, and the former chairman of the California Republican Party. He is the author of the historical perspectives, “The Divided Era” and “The New Conservative Paradigm.”
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Flexible Salafis The Growing Political Power of 'Woke,' Modernist Islamism

Friday, May 8, 2020

Mosque Loudspeaker Saga Continues

Monday, May 4, 2020

Companies That Embrace “Working From Home” (WFH) Will Replace Others

Companies who adopted technology 20 years ago replaced every company that didn’t.
Companies who adopt remote working will replace every company who doesn’t in 20 years.
The reason is incredibly simple: talent and efficiency.


Unless you are Google, Amazon, Facebook or Microsoft remote teams will be far more talented than any office-based team you can build. Talent wars will be won by companies that have great remote work capability, who will wield it to dominate the next decade:

­čôŹFixed Location

A physical office means you can hire the best person you can afford in a 30-mile radius, disqualifying you from 99.9% of the world’s talent.
Remote teams can hire the best person they can afford on the planet.

⭐Great Talent

The most talented people are stipulating remote work as a condition of employment. Companies who don’t provide this won’t be able to attract the best people.
Companies who don’t give this to their existing workers will lose their most talented people to their biggest competitors.

­čÜŽChanging Preferences

The smartest people I know personally ALL plan to work remotely in the next decade.
The most interesting companies I know personally *ALL* plan to hire remote workers in the next decade.
Remote will be the dominant workplace of the best companies and people.


Office-first companies won’t be able to compete with remote-first companies in terms of efficiency, both economic and operationally. Not only will remote-first companies increase their average level of talent with each hire, they will be far more cost-efficient. City living is subsidized by companies, leading to a lower disposable and quality of life.

­čĺ░Real Estate Cost

Office-first companies spend $18,400 on average, per workplace, per person
The best remote setup on the planet costs $2,000 per year, coffee included.
Remote is $16,400 less a year, per team member, or a $16.4m saving per 1,000 workers.

­čÜĘAsynchronous Fist

Offices are instantaneous gratification adult kids clubs where it’s impossible to focus and do deep work without distraction.
Remote gives you the optimum workspace you need to do your best work.

⌛Output over Time

The only metric bad middle managers use to measure performance is time spent in the office.
Remote work is about how much work you get done focussing on productivity.

Why Now?

Remote work is the biggest workplace revolution in history and nothing will deliver a higher quality of life increase in the next decade than this. Workers having more flexibility to decide their work schedule, able to operate when they are most productive rather than a fixed day, enables a far better future of work than the one we currently experience. Organizing work around your life is a huge transition with major implications. Gone is the requirement to beg your bosses permission to go to an appointment, it is the ability to drop and pick your child up from work every day with time in the afternoon to go for your recharging run.
Being handcuffed to an office and expected to live in a high cost of living city with a low quality of life is a remnant of the industrial revolution. The devolution of offices into almost factory-like conditions as distraction factory adult kids clubs is complete. The office has become the worst place on the planet to get the isolation and focus you need to do deep work.
Make no mistake, remote work is exploding to prominence right now. We are living through the inflection point today. Shortly, workers will realize their power and influence to demand remote work.

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Northern Iranian Roasted Pork

Goudar gourmet

Roast pork from northern Iran
When he was all of two-years old, Stan used to reach and pounce a sip of my beer when I was not looking. One evening at his home we were gathered around the dinner table and the conversation somehow spread to Old Vienna. As the boy was reaching for my glass, I gently sought to dissuade him by promising that when he turned eighteen I personally would accompany him to Vienna where he can have a decent drink of beer.
This April I made good on that promise, as Stan and his father and my son and I flew to Vienna and descended upon a friend who was on an academic sabbatical there. That he, I call him Sabatico, be a part of this story too is because during one of his sabbaticals he had written an article on Iranian cuisine, in which he had made the observation that because of Islam there has been no tradition of eating pork in Iran, even though some tribes in Western Iran used to hunt and eat boar.
Wiener schnitzel is a favorite repast in my household, as every Tuesday night I cook up a storm around this basic notion of breading and frying a pounded piece of veal, chicken or pork and serve it up with potato-and-lettuce salad. My son is the ultimate judge of my culinary efforts.
No sooner than we met up with Sabatico at his flat than we trooped down to the neighborhood restaurant for our first encounter with Wiener schnitzel and a tall cold glass of Ottakringer Beer. We did not care about the academically valuable observation by Sabatico that Austrians usually make the schnitzel out of pork and drink mostly wine. A veritable Weiner schnitzel from veal would be just fine, and the beer was just we all needed.
During our self-paced sightseeing tours we often stopped to replenish. One day as the dads sat at one table and the boys were seated at another, I caught a glimpse of Stan, a self-professing more-orthodox-than-reformed member of the Jewish faith, explaining to my son why he has abjured pork. “I respect your values,” said my son, “but I do enjoy a slab of bacon every now and then and will not give it up for anybody.” And so as I involuntarily thought about Sabatico’s rumination about the influence of Islam on Iranian cuisine I ordered a ham sandwich for lunch and thought of the Goudar.
In the waterlogged rice fields of northern Iran the summer air is often perforated by the sound of the beating of washing pans (tasht) that the night watchmen drum in order to scare away the boars (goraz). For sport alone, in the depiction of Iranian hunt scenes, pre-Islamic and later, a boar is shown at the receiving end of a spear or arrow. In the bas-relief at Taq-e Bostan in Kermanshah a Sasanian king is shown at a boar hunt; many similar scenes have been repeated in ornamental objects like textiles, vessels and such.
In Ferdowsi’s Shahnameh, the young and hotheaded hero Bijan was itching to fight the goraz, promising to slay the pigs (khouk). The King, finding his bravado too much to bear, asked another hero, Gorgeen Milad, to accompany Bijan on the perilous campaign. On the trail, they built a huge fire and had just taken wine and kabob that Bijan noticed ruffling sounds coming from the woods and ordered Gorgeen to check it out. When Gorgeen refused, Bijan stormed into the woods like a drunken elephant and gave chase to the pig, which he cut in half by a single stroke of his short sword (khanjar) to the pig’s side. In another story, when Eskandar reached the Eastern Sea, he was greeted with waves of goraz, which his army slew in such large numbers that the heap of carcasses blocked the army’s own way.
In these epic struggles, the boars were no slouches either. Every now and then a boar would bag the macho. According to Abu Mansur Salabi’s Shahnameh (written in Naishahpur between 1016-1020 AD), the Ashkanian (Parthian) king Goudarz II ended up with a broken neck when his steed shied from the injury inflicted by the curved tusks of a boar and bucked its rider. The Gorgan ruler Voshmgeer, son of Ziyar, too, met a similar end.
I do not know if any of the pigs, wild pigs and boars slain in the Shahnameh or other accounts made it into the barbeque pit or stew. Nor can I tell you about when the tribes in Western Iran began and ended the practice of hunting and eating boars. I can say this, however, Western and Eastern Iran are more geographically separated than culturally divided. In my own ancestral homeland in northern Iran whole areas (usually called mahaleh or kuy) were devoted to Gorji, Armenian, Kurd, Fars and Baluch ethnics, to name a few, who one time or another came or were brought from other parts of Iran to settle among us since Timurid times if not earlier.
One of the more remarkable people in my ancestral homeland east of Gorgan in the 19th century was the Goudar and they had a roasted pig recipe to die for.
I first leaned about the Goudar in Masoud Golzari’s edition of Gregorii Melgunof’s “Travels on the Southern Littoral of the Caspian Sea.” The work was published originally in Russian in St. Petersburg in April 1863. The German translation of the work by J. Th. Zenker appeared in Leipzig in 1868. Meanwhile in Tehran, in the 1880s, the original in Russian was translated into Persian by one identified only as Petros, a government translator, and the translation was called “Safarnameh navehi-e shomali iran.” The Golzari edition of the work was published in Tehran (1364 shamsi) as “Safarnameh-ye Melgunof beh savahel-e junubi-e Darya-ye Khazar.”
According to the Russian traveler Gregorii Melgunof, the Goudar lived in most of the villages of Kuhsar and Fenderesk districts; they were neither town-dwellers nor villagers, but rather pastoral, roaming in every direction. They made a living as laborers and guardians of the plains. The Goudar were shunned by those who came into contact with them in the villages; they had no religion and ate pig meat. They possessed no rule or custom for marriage. They settled their disputes by recourse to a third among them as arbiter. The Goudar were famous for shooting and they hunted tigers and leopards. In their locations they outnumbered the Torkaman and where they inhabit the Torkaman dared not attack. This tribe had no particular tongue of its own; the Goudar spoke the Mazandarani dialect of Persian and Torkaman and generally were quick to learn a local language.
What the Petros and Golzari editions of Melgunof’s account left out from the aforecited passage was the Goudar’s recipe for preparing pig! “They cook the pig,” wrote Melgunof, “in its skin and before they cook it, pour butter over it; afterwards they throw the skin to the dogs.” What is more remarkable than the suppression of this passage in the Persian translations/editions of the work, no doubt because of Islamic considerations, is the survival of the Goudari pork roast in the midst of a region known for its heavy dose of religiosity, so much so that at one time Gorgan was known as “Dar al-Momenin”, City of Believers.
In contrast to Melgunof’s description, the article on “Astarabadh” in Encyclopaedia of Islam(vol. I, 1913) described the Goudar as an energetic tribe living in many villages of Mazandaran and Astarabad, where they engaged in agriculture, cattle-rearing, cultivation of silk and drying fruits, and they were despised by the Persians.
In any event, I have not focused much on the origin of the Goudar tribe in Fenderesk and Kuhsar. I have a few guesses though. At one level, their settlement in the mountain regions of eastern Gorgan, such as the name “Kuhsar” and topography of Fenderesk imply, may be reason enough to equate the name Goudar with Kuhdar, meaning either the “lord of mountain” or from the word Kuhyar, meaning mountain-folk. Both possibilities have considerable etymological evidence to support them, but it is unlikely that this pastoral and plains-people were mountain types.
Then there is always the possibility of the Goudar descending from or being affiliated in their history with a person named Goudar(z), a name that occurred among the Parthian (Ashkanian) kings of Iran, in particular as the name of a prince who held sway in the Gorgan region for a while.
The best explanation for the origin of the Goudar of Kuhsar and Fenderesk is that they belonged to an ancient people. The German Orientalist Wilhelm Geiger (“Civilisation of the Eastern Iranians in Ancient Times,” vol. II, 1886) identified the Avestan servile class of Vaisu with the Chudra of the Brahmanic society and the Luris that dwelt in Baluchistan. Gypsies and menial workers, Luris lived in small parties formed of a couple of families. They belonged to no particular race, had no landed property, nor cultivated the fields of others. They were partly vagrant musicians, wandering from village to another, and partly engaged in humble industries, such as pottery, rope-making and mat-knitting. The Luris were induced by the Sasanian king, Bahram Gur, to emigrate from India to Iran.
My money is on the Goudar being remnants of a people known to the Achaemenians as Saka (Scythians to Europeans) and who in 1st century AD migrated in large numbers into Sistan (hence the name Sakastana, Sagastan of the Sasanian, land of Saka, before the Arab invasion) and northwest India. A short description by G.P. Tate in his book “Seistan,” written about 1905 and published in Quetta, Pakistan, in 1977, makes the connection. Of Saka origin, he wrote, the Goudar or Gujar of Sistan originally migrated to Sistan from beyond the Oxus River in Central Asia. The Goudar who lived in Harat-Kandahar region of Afghanistan and in Iran, in his time, were agriculturalists and herdsmen, and bore matchlocks. In complexion they were brown, in appearance they were squalid and their women were unveiled. The Goudar of the town of Ashraf on the Caspian Sea were regarded as pariah. In India, however, the Goudar received even less respect: “A desert is better than a Gujar. Wherever you see a Gujar hit him; when all other castes are dead make friends with a Gujar!”
The location of the Goudar in Ashraf is significant for the kind of wild life that abounded there. According to “Daret al-Moaref Sarzamin va Mardom Iran” [Encyclopaedia of Iranian Land and People] by Abdolhossein Saeedian (Tehran, 1360 shamsi), the place was known originally as Kharguran, which was then changed to Panj-Hezar. Beginning with the Safavid period in Iranian history at the turn of the 16th century the place was re-named Asiabsar, which Shah Abbas I the Great then changed to Ashraf, which then became Behshahr at the time of Reza Shah. The town is in on the Caspian coast opposite the Miyankala Peninsula that has been home to a prosperous wild boar (Sus scrofa) population.
One way to control the wild pig and goraz population is for the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to lift the religious prohibition on consumption of pork, just as the Ayatollah Khomeini lifted the prohibition on the eating of sturgeon and thus promoted the decimation of the species, perhaps unwittingly. In Baku, Azerbaijan, another Moslem country, despite the Koranic precepts of sureh 5, ayeh 3 of al-Maidah, some Azerbaijani restaurants serve pork by the name “donuz” or wild boar by the name “gaban” and they are raking in the hard currency!
When in Vienna, I asked for schnitzel of pork and thought of my Iranian countrymen the Goudar of Eastern Iran.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Tears of Jihad: 270 Million Killed by Muslims and Jihad

Tears of Jihad

Thomas Sowell [Thomas Sowell, Race and Culture, BasicBooks, 1994, p. 188] estimates that 11 million slaves were shipped across the Atlantic and 14 million were sent to the Islamic nations of North Africa and the Middle East. For every slave captured many others died. Estimates of this collateral damage vary. The renowned missionary David Livingstone estimated that for every slave who reached a plantation, five others were killed in the initial raid or died of illness and privation on the forced march.[Woman’s Presbyterian Board of Missions, David Livingstone, p. 62, 1888] Those who were left behind were the very young, the weak, the sick and the old. These soon died since the main providers had been killed or enslaved. So, for 25 million slaves delivered to the market, we have an estimated death of about 120 million people. Islam ran the wholesale slave trade in Africa.
120 million Africans
The number of Christians martyred by Islam is 9 million [David B. Barrett, Todd M. Johnson, World Christian Trends AD 30-AD 2200, William Carey Library, 2001, p. 230, table 4-10] . A rough estimate by Raphael Moore in History of Asia Minor is that another 50 million died in wars by jihad. So counting the million African Christians killed in the 20th century we have:
60 million Christians
Koenard Elst in Negationism in India gives an estimate of 80 million Hindus killed in the total jihad against India. [Koenard Elst, Negationism in India, Voice of India, New Delhi, 2002, pg. 34.] The country of India today is only half the size of ancient India, due to jihad. The mountains near India are called the Hindu Kush, meaning the “funeral pyre of the Hindus.”
80 million Hindus
Buddhists do not keep up with the history of war. Keep in mind that in jihad only Christians and Jews were allowed to survive as dhimmis (servants to Islam) everyone else had to convert or die. Jihad killed the Buddhists in Turkey, Afghanistan, along the Silk Route, and in India. The total is roughly 10 million. [David B. Barrett, Todd M. Johnson, World Christian Trends AD 30-AD 2200, William Carey Library, 2001, p. 230, table 4-1.] 10 million Buddhists
Oddly enough there were not enough Jews killed in jihad to significantly affect the totals of the Great Annihilation. The jihad in Arabia was 100 percent effective, but the numbers were in the thousands, not millions. After that, the Jews submitted and became the dhimmis (servants and second class citizens) of Islam and did not have geographic political power.
This gives a rough estimate of 270 million killed by jihad.

The Alans: Iranian Christian Byzantines (Romans) and Georgians

The Alans were famous for their skill and ferocity in battle. In the 12th century, Nicephoros Basilaces writes that the Alans are "the most warlike race among the Caucasians; if you see their host, you will look for bravery nowhere else; if you notice their valour in war, you will not mind facing a myriad of enemies." At the battle of Philippolis in 1189, against the German emperor Barbarossa, it were only the Alans that fought (and died) against the Germans, while the rest of the Byzantine army fled before the battle even started. Even in the 15th century, when the Alans were already transforming to the Ossetians, they were still considered to be "the best warriors in combat by far" (Laonicus Chalcocondyles). The fact that even the Mongols valued the Alan warriors for centures is only a further testament for their skill and courage. A courage which is probably explained with that the Alans were fairly obsessed with honour, the honour of the motherland and all Alans. To display cowardness was to dishonour your whole people. An other aspect of honour was the blood revenge. For example it were mostly Alans who hunted down the remnants of an Sicilian army after the latter had conquered Thessalonici in 1189, in an attempt to avenge the Alans who died in that siege. For the Ossetians, blood revenge would remain common until fairly recently.

All in all, the Alans would have been a full-blown warrior society.
Here you have a compilation of Medieval Alan names, based on sources from the 11th-15th century. Sources are the Georgian and Byzantine chronicles and a couple of names clustered together from different sources. I only considered the Medieval ones, even if some antique ones are etymologically explainable with modern Ossetian words. 



*Agusti Alemany (2001): "Sources on the Alans. A critical compilation"
*Irina Arzhantseva (2002): "The Christianization of North Caucasus (Religious Dualism among the Alans)"
*Irina Arzhantseva (?): "Alans: between Bzantium and Khazaria"
*Irina Arzhantseva, Irina Turova, Maria Bronnikova and Elia Zazovskaya (2001): "Alan settlements of the first millennium in the Kislovodsk Basin, Russia"
*Vladimir Kuznetsov & Jaroslav lebedynsky (2005): "Les Alains. Cavaliers des steppes, seigneurs du Caucase. Ier - XVe si├Ęcles apr. J.-C."