TheFrontPageCover
~ Featuring ~
We Must Improve Our Trust 
by Peggy Noonan
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Kay Bailey Hutchinson Discusses Upcoming NATO Summit
by sundance
{ theconservativetreehouse.com } ~ President Trump heads to Europe on Tuesday for a series of meetings in several EU nations... On Wednesday and Thursday 11th/12th the NATO summit. On Thursday and Friday 12th/13th a U.K. Visit. Saturday and Sunday 14th/15th a visit to Scotland; and Monday the 16th a summit with Russia’s Vladimir Putin in Helsinki Finland. The EU and U.S. media are one-upping themselves every few hours with apoplectic proclamations about horrible Trump and the high-minded need to save the angelic NATO mission of unbridled altruism; a liberally canonized Saint Merkel of Deutschland; as well as Londonistan’s Queen Elizabeth and Prime Minister Theresa May, from the horrors of a swaggering U.S. vulgarian…  
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Media Silent As US Agrees To ‘Full Implementation’
of United Nations Gun Control Pact 
by RACHEL BLEVINS 
{ freedomoutpost.com } ~ While the United States is typically set apart from other countries when it comes to gun laws... a recent conference with the United Nations has raised major red flags, as the U.S. agreed to enact “full implementation” of an international agreement on gun control that will violate Americans’ constitutional rights by adding their personal information to a global database. The Third Review Conference (RevCon) of the United Nations’ Program of Action (PoA) on Small Arms and Light Weapons was held in New York last week with a 2018 agreement, which states that its purpose is to serve as “a renewed commitment to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects.” “We, the States participating in the third United Nations Conference to review progress made in the implementation of the Program of Action to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects, convened at United Nations Headquarters in New York from 18 to 29 June 2018 to review progress made in implementation and identify priorities for strengthened implementation, reaffirm our commitment to the full and effective implementation of all of the provisions of the Program of Action and the International Tracing Instrument, with a view to ending the human suffering caused by the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons.”...This so wrong. Without the people knowing about it.   https://freedomoutpost.com/media-silent-as-us-agrees-to-full-implem...
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Two U.S. Destroyers Sail Through Taiwan Strait
by Sam LaGrone
{ news.usni.org } ~ Two U.S. guided missile destroyers transited the Taiwan Strait this weekend, a U.S. defense official confirmed to USNI News on Saturday... The Japan-based destroyers, USS Mustin (DDG-89) and USS Benfold (DDG-65), entered the 110-mile wide strait between mainland China and Taiwan on Saturday local time. “Two U.S. Navy ships conducted a routine transit through the international waters of the Taiwan Strait on July 7-8,” U.S. Pacific Fleet spokesman Capt. Charlie Brown told USNI News on Saturday. “U.S. Navy ships transit between the South China Sea and East China Sea via the Taiwan Strait and have done so for many years.” Brown wouldn’t confirm any additional details of the transit. The Taiwan Ministry of Defense identified the destroyers in a statement to local press. The government in Taipei stated they monitored the transit, in the statement...   https://news.usni.org/2018/07/07/two-u-s-destroyers-sail-taiwan-str...
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Egypt's Islamist Televangelists Lose Clout
by Hany Ghoraba
{ investigativeproject.org } ~ They once captured the hearts and minds of millions of Egyptians, but Islamist televangelists are losing popularity... They started to lose credibility during the June 2013 revolution that drove the Muslim Brotherhood from power and in the subsequent terrorist attacks after Islamist President Mohamed Morsi's ouster. "The state of abandonment of the Salafi preachers and the Muslim Brotherhood ... is very good and serves the interests of the Egyptian, Arab and Islamic societies," said former Muslim Brotherhood member Sameh Eid. "The exposure of the ideas of these preachers and their great dependence on a heritage that is no longer suitable for the present time and place make them a rare and ridiculous material on the pages of the media." Fewer people are watching the Islamist televangelists shows, Islamist groups researcher and former Brotherhood member Tarek Abou Saad, so they now resort to using historical tales of Islam's grandeur to try to draw an audience. Despite those efforts, televangelist ratings during Ramadan were the lowest since 2011...
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Israel’s Gaza Policy
by MAJ. GEN. (RES.) GERSHON HACOHEN

{ meforum.org } ~ Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen, senior research associate at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA), served in the IDF for 42 years... commanding troops in battle on the Egyptian and Syrian fronts. Formerly a Corps commander, he was also a commander of the IDF Military Colleges. Gen. Hacohen briefed the Middle East Forum in a conference call on June 28, 2018. The transformation of the Gaza Strip into an ineradicable terror entity poses a formidable security threat to Israel by placing its population centers and strategic infrastructure within the range of Hamas’s rockets and missiles all the way to Tel Aviv, and by allowing the group to breach the border fence and infiltrate Israel via its extensive network of underground tunnels. Should the IDF need to enter Gaza in a future war, Hamas has the ability to exact a heavy toll through its well-organized defensive positions in the cities and refugee camps. This casts a serious doubt on the viability of the Oslo paradigm of a unified Palestinian entity in the West Bank and Gaza. For one thing, should such an entity come into being with its likely transformation into a terror stronghold near Israel’s heartland, the Jewish state will face an existential threat. For another thing, as vividly illustrated by the 25 years since the launch of the Oslo process, there is a deep, perhaps unbridgeable schism between the West Bank and the Gaza populations stemming from their fundamentally divergent historical, sociocultural, and political backgrounds. Hence Mahmoud Abbas’s total indifference to the humanitarian suffering wrought by his suspension of financial aid to Gaza as a means of weakening Hamas... .
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We Must Improve Our Trust 
  
by Peggy Noonan

{ peggynoonan.com } ~ I have been thinking about trust. All the polls show and have for some time what you already know: America’s trust in its leaders and institutions has been falling for four decades. Trust in the federal government has never been lower. In 1958 Pew Research found 73% trusted the government to do what is right “always” or “most of the time.” That sounds healthy. As of 2017 that number was 18%. That’s not.

Other institutions have suffered, too—the church, the press, the professions. That’s disturbing because those institutions often bolster our national life in highly personal ways. When government or law turns bad, they provide a place, a platform from which to stand, to make a case, to correct.

A problem that has so many parts and so much history—from Vietnam to Twitter bots—will not easily be solved. But there are things we can do individually to help America be more at peace with itself.

First, realize this isn’t merely a problem but a crisis. When you say you believe in and trust democratic institutions, you are saying you believe in and trust democracy itself. When you don’t, you don’t. When a nation tells pollsters it’s unable to trust its constituent parts it’s telling pollsters it doesn’t trust itself.

It’s time to see our mighty institutions with their noble facades—the grand marble court houses, the soaring cathedral—for what they are: secretly frail and in constant need of saving.

When you’re young and starting out you imagine institutions are monoliths—big, impervious to your presence. Later, having spent time within, you know how human and flawed it all is, and how it’s saved each day by the wisdom and patience—the quiet heroism—of a few. Be one of the few.

If you’re young it would be good at this point to enter your profession with a premature sense of the frailty of everything.

Six years ago I was invited to speak to a small West Point class. Polls had come out showing that the U.S. military still retained the trust of the people, and this was much on my mind. I wondered if the cadets knew how much was riding on them.

I told them the institution they’re about to enter was among the last standing, and one of their great jobs will be to keep it trustworthy.

Naturally maintaining their institution’s moral stature was not the main focus of their minds. So I told them a story of a great army of the West, admired by all, that did something wrong, and then a series of things, and by the end, when it came out, as such things do, it broke that army’s reputation in a way from which it never quite recovered. I was speaking of France and the Dreyfus affair. They had not heard of it.

There should be a course in it.

I urged them to conduct themselves so that such a thing could never happen in the U.S. Army. I don’t think I left them rushing to download Émile Zola on their iPads. I do think they were hearing for the first time how much America depends on them not only for military expertise but to keep up the national morale.

In many ways we’re too national in our thinking. Don’t always be thinking up there. Be thinking here, where life takes place. In building trust think close to home. If your teenager judges an institution called Business in America by the billionaire hedge funder spouting inane thoughts on cable TV with a look on his face that says “See how original I am!” then capitalism is doomed. You can’t make your teenager admire slippery, rapacious tech gods in Silicon Valley. But if your children understand business in America as modeled by you—as honorable men and women engaged in an honorable pursuit—then they will have respect for the institution of business. If for no other reason be honest in your dealings, be compassionate, and provide excellence.

Realize there’s a difference between skepticism and cynicism, that one is constructive and the other childish.

Skepticism involves an intellectual exercise: You look at the grand surface knowing it may not reflect the inner reality. It implies action: If it doesn’t, try to make it better. Cynicism is a dodge: Everything’s crud, you’d be a fool to try and make it better, it’s all irredeemable and unchangeable.

Be skeptical of our institutions, not cynical toward them.

For those who operate on any level of our public life, hear this: Some of our problems can be resolved or made less dramatic and assaultive by an old-fashioned concept that used to exist in American public life. It is called tact. We are in an epidemic of tactlessness, which is an absence of respect for the other side, for whoever is on that side. It is an utter lack of generosity and sensitivity.

“Bake my cake” is, among other things, a stunning example of lack of tact. You’re supposed to win graciously, not rub the loser’s face in it.

If you are, say, in the U.S. Congress, where both parties failed for a quarter-century to regulate our borders effectively, and those forced to live with the results of that derogation rise up and demand action, the correct response is not to imply they are nativist racist bigots.

You listen to people, you don’t label them insultingly.

A tactful response? “We take your point—we haven’t succeeded and we’ll try to get it right. In the meantime, since we’re all imperfect human beings, please don’t let your anger turn into something small, biased and narrow. While you investigate your heart, we will get to work.”

You lose nothing when you hear and respect criticism. You gain trust.

Finally, we ask so much of government, which is not, we know, the most competent of institutions. When we ask too much and multiply its tasks, it’s likely to fail, and when it does we become angry—and trust goes down again.

Our founders were skeptical of concentrated power. The power of government, arrayed against the individual, could crush him. They devised checks, balances, enumerated rights. Those who believe in their wisdom should speak of it more persuasively.

To this day many Republicans speak of what they call “limited government.” This is an unfortunate and unpersuasive phrase. Usage changes. To most people “limited” means insufficient, not up to the task. “He had the heart of a quarterback but was limited by his small stature.” Americans know they have limited government. They’ve been to the DMV. What they’d like is a government that acknowledges its limits and understands itself as one of many players in the democratic drama—not the central player but a present and competent one. A realistic government, a humble government, at the very least a more collegial one.

President Trump cannot help. Increasing public trust is not his declared mission, and what it would take is not in his toolbox. He tends in his statements to undermine trust: His own government is embarked on a deep-state witch-hunt conspiracy, his agencies are incompetent, the press is fake-news liars.

What can be handled by us, should be. We can’t go forward this way.

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Comment by Rudy Tirre on July 10, 2018 at 8:30am

Bonnie

I do believe its congress who agreed on this deal with UN but failed to pass this on the people. its the dummycrats-dema and rinos who voted for this disaster. listing to some college kids who before the selection of the supreme court judge was made said some disturbing things. they need to wake up and get some facts and start learning.

Comment by Bonnie Somer on July 10, 2018 at 8:14am
Media Silent As US Agrees To ‘Full Implementation’
of United Nations Gun Control Pact  
OMG HOW DO WE GET OUT OF THIS?    WHO THE DAMN HELL AGREED TO THIS DISASTEROUS TSUNAMI?  
IF WE DO NOT ELECT PEOPLE IN OUR GOVT TO DO WHAT WE WANT WE ARE DONE FOR.
I KNOW OUR SCHOOLS AND OUR KIDS NEED US NOW MORE THAN EVER;
OUR AMERICAN PRINCIPLES CANNOT BE OUTTED BY THE UN OR OUR GOVT FOR THEIR NEFARIOUS BENEFIT.
IF WE ALLOW THIS WE ARE GONE AND WILL BE SLAVES TO THEIR GLOBAL HORROR

LIGHTER SIDE

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

Political Cartoons by Mike Lester

ALERT ALERT

Newt Says What The Rest Of Us Are Thinking:
It’s Time To Throw Peter Strzok In Jail

Disgraced FBI special agent Peter Strzok, a senior member of the bureau who gained notoriety in recent months over his anti-Trump text messages to a colleague, was grilled for nearly 10 hours during a joint congressional committee hearing on Thursday.

At issue was Strzok’s anti-Trump texts to former FBI lawyer and lover Lisa Page that coincided with his leading of the investigations into both former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server scandal and the alleged Trump/Russia 2016 election collusion, as well as his involvement in the subsequent Robert Mueller special counsel probe.

The hearing proved to be a heated battle, as Strzok displayed an arrogant smugness in defiance of pointed questions from Republicans that he largely danced around, while Democrats sought to upend and undermine the entire hearing with a plethora of interruptions, parliamentary maneuvers and outright praise for the man who helped let Clinton off the hook while ferociously targeting Trump.

Former House speaker and presidential candidate Newt Gingrich was less than impressed with Strzok’s performance and cooperation in the hearing and suggested during an appearance on Fox Business that the FBI agent should be held in contempt of Congress.

“I think they have to move to hold him in contempt and throw him in jail,” Gingrich said of Congress and Strzok.

“This is a person who is willfully standing up and refusing to appear as a congressional witness and he was a government employee at the time,” he continued.

“He has every obligation to inform the legislative branch, and I don’t think they have any choice except to move a motion of contempt because he is fundamentally — and so is his girlfriend (Page) — they’re both fundamentally in violation of the entire constitutional process,” he added.

Page had been subpoenaed to appear before Congress on Wednesday but refused to appear, saying she’d been unable to review relevant documents prior to the scheduled hearing, a closed-door hearing that has since been rescheduled for Friday.

Gingrich was not the only one who thought Strzok deserved to be held in contempt of Congress, as House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte informed Strzok that he remained at risk of such during the hearing, according to The Daily Caller.

That warning from Goodlatte came after Strzok had refused to answer a straightforward question posed by House Oversight Committee chairman Trey Gowdy, regarding how many people Strzok had personally interviewed between a specific set of dates in relation to the Clinton email investigation.

“Mr. Strzok, please be advised that you can either comply with the committee’s direction to answer the question or refuse to do so,” Goodlatte stated. “The latter of which will place you in risk of a contempt citation and potential criminal liability. Do you understand that? The question is directed to the witness.”

Strzok still refused to answer, citing instructions received from his counsel and the FBI to not answer certain questions on certain topics.

Goodlatte replied, “Mr. Strzok, in a moment we will continue with the hearing, but based on your refusal to answer the question, at the conclusion of the day we will be recessing the hearing and you will be subject to recall to allow the committee to consider proceeding with a contempt citation.”

It is unclear if Goodlatte and the committee ultimately did consider a contempt citation for Strzok following the contentious hearing, nor is it clear if Page will be held in contempt for blowing off her subpoenaed appearance on Wednesday.

Hopefully Congress will follow through on the threats of contempt followed by actual jail time against Strzok and Page in response to their uncooperative behavior and failure to appear when subpoenaed, if only to ensure that future witnesses called before Congress for sensitive or contentious hearings don’t think they can get away with the same sort of behavior.

TEA PARTY TARGET

Cops Sent To Seize Veteran’s Guns Without A Warrant, He Refused To Turn Them Over

“No one from the state was going to take my firearms without due process,” says Leonard Cottrell, after successfully staving off law enforcement and the courts from confiscating his firearms. Cottrell, an Iraq War veteran, was at work when he received a phone call from his wife. The cops were there, busting in to take his guns away. It all started after a casual conversation his son had at school.

Ammoland reports:

Police said their visit was sparked by a conversation that Leonard Cottrell Jr.’s 13-year-old son had had with another student at the school. Cottrell said he was told his son and the other student were discussing security being lax and what they would have to do to escape a school shooting at Millstone Middle School.

The conversation was overheard by another student, who went home and told his parents, and his mother panicked. The mom then contacted the school, which contacted the State Police, according to Cottrell.

The visit from the troopers came around 10 p.m. on June 14, 2018, Cottrell said, a day after Gov. Phil Murphy signed several gun enforcement bills into law.

After several hours, Cottrell said police agreed not to take the guns but to allow him to move them to another location while the investigation continued.

“They had admitted several times that my son made no threat to himself or other students or the school or anything like that,” he said.

Cottrell said he made it very clear to the police that he was “not going to willingly give up my constitutional rights where there’s no justifiable cause, no warrants, no nothing.”

The troopers searched his son’s room and found nothing, Cottrell said.

“To appease everybody, I had my firearms stored someplace else,” he said. “That way, during the course of the investigation, my son doesn’t have access to them and it’s on neutral ground and everything and everybody’s happy.”

“In the Garden State, the usual approach is to confiscate first and ask questions later, and victims of this approach often don’t know their rights. ‎In this case, the victim pushed back and confiscation was avoided — but the circumstances surrounding the incident are outrageous. A student expressing concern over lack of security is not a reason to send police to the student’s home — but it might be a reason to send police to the school to keep students and teachers safe” said Scott L. Bach, executive director of the Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs and a member of the NRA board of directors.

NJ.com adds:

Cottrell, a disabled U.S. Army veteran who served three tours during “Operation Iraqi Freedom,” owns a shotgun and a pistol. He has all the correct permits to own the firearms, he said, and predominately uses the shotgun to hunt.

He said his wife allowed the officers to enter the home, and with her permission, they searched his son’s room — but they did not find any weapons, he said. The officers, he said, didn’t have a warrant but still wanted to take his guns. Cottrell wouldn’t let them.

“No one from the state was going to take my firearms without due process,” he said Thursday.

He said the attempted seizure resulted because of a new law Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law that makes it easier for police to confiscate guns when someone in the state poses a threat to themselves or others. The law is part of a broader statewide effort to make New Jersey’s gun laws even tougher amid the national outcry for more gun control in the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

Cottrell said the officers “danced around the issue” when he confronted them about the new law.

A New Jersey State Police spokesman declined to answer questions about whether this incident had anything to do with the new gun laws.

In an email, Sgt. First Class Jeff Flynn said, “Troopers responded to Mr. Cottrell’s residence in reference to the report of a possible school threat. Based on their investigation, it was determined that Mr. Cottrell’s weapons did not need to be seized.”

David Codrea, writing for Ammoland, further added:

To appease everybody, I had my firearms stored someplace else,” New Jersey gun owner and Army veteran Leonard Cottrell Jr. told New Jersey 101.5 after a June 14 visit from State Police,. “That way, during the course of the investigation, my son doesn’t have access to them and it’s on neutral ground and everything and everybody’s happy.”

Cottrell was recalling state troopers showing up at his door to confiscate firearms after his 13-year-old son was overheard discussing lax school safety with a friend.

Indoctrinated by a pervasive snitch culture — one that never seems to deter the blatantly obvious demonic nutjobs — the eavesdropping student told his parents, who told school administrators, who in turn called the cops. (Note “If you see something, say something” carries risks of its own – if you report the wrong person, you could end up smeared as a “hater.”)

“Cottrell said he made it very clear to the police that he was ‘not going to willingly give up my constitutional rights where there’s no justifiable cause, no warrants, no nothing,’” the report continued. Despite that, his home is now a “gun free zone” and that has been publicized by the media. He has, in fact, willingly ceded those rights, and by his own words in order to make authorities “happy.”

Before judging him for that, consider the environment that is New Jersey. Then consider the overwhelming force the state can bring to bear, and its predisposition to using it, especially if it’s to enforce citizen disarmament. It’s easy to anonymously declare “Molon Labe” on the internet. In meatspace, resistance is more effective when the aggressor doesn’t get to dictate the time and place, especially if that place is your home and you have family inside.

Appeasing gun-grabbers, generally couched as “compromise,” is impossible. It’s like throwing a scrap of flesh to a circling pack of jackals and expecting them to be sated and leave you alone — instead of sensing opportunity and fear, and moving in closer.

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