Archive for September 2010

Shabbot Shalom and Yom Kipper!

September 18, 2010
OUT of ZION Ministries
  Apt # 2,  9 Sachlav St,  Ramat  Almogi,    Haifa  34792,     ISRAEL.       
Tel:  972 4 8245590        Email: kiwi@netvision.net.il              Website: www.out-of-zion.com

Out of Zion Ministries is under the spiritual covering of Kehilat HaCarmel (Carmel Assembly),
Pastor  Mike Fryer  &  Motte Sircus 

The CARMEL ALERT September 18th 2010
A compilation of news reports from the past week for the information of those committed to praying
A Messianic Ministry Based on Mt Carmel
Address:

 
David’s Comment: Time is Short – Time to Put the Gospel to Work
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.   (NKJ)

If anyone is in doubt that things are accelerating and the return of the Lord is rapidly approaching  – just look at the crazy things taking place all around the world.  Things that were taboo 30 years ago are now regularly seen on television & movie screens.  Most people don’t even bat an eyelid at things that would have caused an outrage a generation ago.  Even in the church, which is supposed to be the House of God, we see & hear things that you would once only have witnessed in a pub or nightclub.  Ever since the late 1960’s the moral fibre of the Western world had been steadily sliding into the abyss. 

Another clue is the rise of Islam, and not just radical Islam.  We are witnessing the covert infiltration of Islam into every sector of our once Christian nations – the most concerning being the media and politics.  Do not be fooled like most of those around us.  Islam is not a nice peaceful religion.  It is a religion that exists to take land for Allah and to subdue all those who resist, even to the point of cold blooded murder.  And the Islamic world’s intensifying fervour to see the demise of Israel is yet another indicator of the rapidly approaching end of the age.

Then there are the ever increasing natural disasters.  Storms, floods, tsunamis, fires, and earthquakes are wreaking havoc all over the planet.  According to the UK’s Daily Telegraph, the recent earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, moved the earth 11 feet. These are truly days of great shaking, but according to the words of Yeshua in Matthew 24 and Luke 21, there is much worse to come.  As never before, now is the time to share the Good News of God’s plan and provision of personal salvation with family, friends, neighbours, work-mates, and the people we come into contact every day at the PO, the bank or the store. Even people we encounter who we never met before and are unlikely to meet again, deserve the opportunity to say YES to Yeshua. 

Ever since the morning after I gave my life to the Lord, I have had a strong compunction to tell people about the reality of God.  Until that time, i had been a devout Atheist, virulently denying the very existence of God.  Most people’s initial response was “that’s great for you, but please don’t involve me.”  It seems that a spirit has come down over the post-Christian Western World that causes the majority of people to have absolutely no interest in their own eternal well-being.  In fact I had a recent revelation that most people (myself included) spend more time & energy trying to prove that God doesn’t exist, than seeking to simply discover the truth.  I see now how irrational that is.  Surely if there really is a benevolent Creator out there, who desires to have a 2 way intimate relationship with His children, and wants to bless them in every way, any intelligent, rational person would want to have that kind of relationship.  Only a  lying, deceiving spirit can cause human beings from seeking out their Creator.

Yeshua is now seated at the right hand of the Father, leaving each & every one of us with the “great commission” to go into all of the world making disciples in every nation.  That doesn’t mean we need to travel to the other side of the world to share the Gospel.  Sadly, most of the people we encounter every day are on the road to eternity in Hell. In case any of our readers don’t believe there is a Hell, Yeshua mentioned Hell many more times that He mentioned Heaven. And if there is no Hell, why did the Son of God need to endure the excrutiatingly painful and shameful death on the cross ?  I believe there is a Hell and that the Lord is looking to us to rescue as many of His children as possible from that eternal separation.

I want to share with you some of the ways I employ to share the Gospel

Rather than you doing all the talking,  ask them questions  …. 

Find out where they are currently at in their belief system   –  there is no point talking about the Bible if they dont even believe there is a God

Share your most powerful, supernatural testimonies  –  if you don’t have any, step out of your comfort zone and you will soon have some

Use current events to initiate conversations.  Here you can quote what the Bible says about the End Times  –   as a car bumper that i saw said  ” Read the Bible – It will scare the Hell out of you !”

Proclaim relevant scripture verses over people  – but you don’t need to tell them that you are quoting the Bible – that only causes people to  put their defenses up – just proclaim the Word

Most importantly keep the people you are witnessing to in your prayers  –  Yeshua told us that no one comes to the Father unless the Holy Spirit draws them

If you would like a more comprehensive article on evangelism please email me & I will send you an attached article.       REMEMBER  ………..

Rom 10:14-15  How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?  And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!”  (NKJ)

The Lord bless you as you bless Israel by standing in defense of her right to exist on the land given to the Jewish people by the God of Israel. 
Lets pray that Israel will turn back to their God.  Do not be silent, but share this with your fellow Christians, share it with your pastors, and with anyone you have a chance to speak to. Lets also pray for that breakthrough to the Muslims,  and please remember to pray for all of the soldiers in the IDF -they are defending and fighting for the Kingdom of God.

Shabbat Shalom …. David & Josie

THIS WEEKS NEWS REPORTS   

1. Netanyahu Demands Full End to Conflict   Israel Today News   Sept 12th
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that when he attends the next round of direct peace negotiations with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Tuesday, he will demand that the agreement they are working toward mark a full end to the conflict.   Abbas “needs to recognize the principle that if we reach a settlement on borders then Israel will demand that it end the conflict, and the Palestinians recognize the Jewish state,” an Israeli official told the Ynet news portal. “The prime minister will not agree to a principle that allows the Palestinians to establish a state and then continue the argument over which territory belongs to whom.”    In that vein, Netanyahu on Sunday reiterated his demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as “the Jewish state,” and that after the signing of a peace deal.   “We both live on the same small piece of land but as soon as we suggest a two state solution for two nations, a Jewish one and a Palestinian one, unfortunately I do not hear from the other side the sentence ‘two states for two nations.’ I hear two states, but I don’t hear two nations,” Netanyahu said at the weekly cabinet meeting.
   Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas clarified for his people on Monday that he intends to make not even one concession or compromise in direct peace negotiations with Israel, and that for a final status peace to be achieved, Israel will have to fully meet all Arab demands and abandon its own conditions.  First and foremost, Abbas told Palestinian newspapers that if the Jewish building freeze in Judea and Samaria (the so-called “West Bank”) is not extended indefinitely, the negotiations will come to an immediate halt. But Abbas also said he would walk out of the talks if he is pressured at all to alter the Palestinians’ more hardline positions.  “If they demand concessions on the rights of the refugees or the 1967 borders, I will quit. I can’t allow myself to make even one concession,” Abbas told the Palestinian newspaper Al-Ayyam.   The Palestinian Authority again reiterated to its own people in Arabic that the ultimate goal in regards to Jerusalem is to wrest control of the entire city from Israel. And once again, the international media ignored the nefarious agenda that the Palestinians themselves admit they have.  The Palestinian government was outraged this week when the World Jewish Congress kicked off its annual gathering in Jerusalem.  
Please pray that the PM keeps the Biblical borders and the future of Israel as his primary concern

2. Gaza Rockets Mar Holiday Weekend for Israelis    Israel Today News   Sept 12th
    The Rosh Hashanah holiday weekend was not a restful one for the residents of southern Negev region, where four rockets fired by Gaza-based Palestinian terrorists landed from Thursday to Saturday evening. On Sunday morning, another two rockets were fired at southern Israel.  There were no injuries in the attacks, but local Israelis were forced to spend much of the holiday indoors and as close to their bomb shelters as possible.   Last Wednesday, on the eve of Rosh Hashanah, a mortar shell fired from Gaza damaged an Israeli kindergarten just 30 minutes before the children arrived.
Please pray that all rockets & other missiles will continue to land on open ground

3 .IDF Shelling Kills 3 Militants Near Gaza Border   Ha Aretz News  Sept 12th
    An Israel Defense Forces shelling killed three Palestinians approaching the border between Israel and Gaza, Israel Radio reported on Sunday, as the number of violent incidents in recent weeks continues to increase.   Earlier Sunday, Gaza militants fired three mortar shells at the northern Negev. No injuries or damages were reported.  The IDF Spokesman’s Office stated in response that an “IDF unit spotted suspicious figures attempting to fire anti-tank missiles, at which point the soldiers returned fire.”   The statement added that, in an earlier separate incident, Israeli soldiers identified suspicious figures attempting to approach the border fence between Israel and Gaza, with soldiers firing warning shots.
    Lask week Israel Air Force planes struck targets in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip in retaliation to Palestinian militants firing a rocket from the territory into Israel.  The IDF confirmed at the time that its air force had attacked the coastal territory in response to a wave of security incidents over the last week.  The army said that it had struck smuggling tunnels used by militants planning to infiltrate Israel and commit terror acts against civilians soldiers.   The cross-border violence was the first since Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met in Washington on Thursday to relaunch peace talks, and was a stark reminder of the obstacles both leaders face.
     Early on Saturday, Gaza militants fired a rocket into southern Israel, causing no injuries, the Israeli military said.  Hours later, witnesses and Hamas security officials said Israeli aircraft fired rockets at targets in Gaza, including smuggling tunnels along the border with Egypt.   Gaza security officials say one Palestinian was killed, one wounded and three are missing after the Israeli air strike. Hamas identified the five as smugglers working in a tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border.  The Islamists of Hamas routed forces loyal to Abbas to take over the Gaza Strip in 2007. Hamas rejects Abbas’s peace moves and said on Thursday that 13 militant groups had agreed to work together to launch “more effective attacks” against Israel.
Please pray that the IDF is able to locate and decommission all who seek to make war with Israel

4. Palestinian Mortar Targets Israeli Kindergarten    Israel Today News   Sept 12th
    Palestinian terrorists operating out of the Gaza Strip fired a mortar shell at an elementary school compound in southern Israel on Wednesday morning, damaging the kindergarten building.   The attack came just 30 minutes before the students arrived for school. Officials said that had the attack happened just a little later, Israel would today be mourning a major tragedy.   School officials decided to go ahead with classes, but had all of the students study in the few buildings that are fully reinforced against Palestinian rocket and mortar attacks. Students were not permitted to go outside for recess.
Lets give thank to the Lord for the fact that the children were not harmed

5. Nine Mortars Hit Southern Israel   –  One Terrorist Killed in Tunnel Strike  Ha Aretz News Sept 15th
    Israeli aircraft bombed a smuggling tunnel under the Gaza Strip’s border with Egypt on Wednesday, killing a Palestinian, witnesses said. The attack came hours after Gaza militants stepped up rocket and mortarfire on southern Israel, in an apparent attempt to scupper Middle East peace talks.   Witnesses in the southern Gaza town of Rafah said the Israeli air strike killed a tunnel worker and wounded two other people. The Israeli army confirmed the attack.   Earlier on Wednesday, Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip fired two Qassam rockets into Israel. One of the rockets exploded in an open area in the industrial zone just south of Ashkelon. There were no injuries or property damage.  In addition to the rocket strikes, nine mortar shells also hit an open area in the Eshkol region near the Gaza Strip, the Israel Defense Forces confirmed. 
     There was also a fear of renewed violence across the border in Jordan, with the U.S. embassy in the country warning of a high chance of terror attacks in the Red Sea city of Aqaba over the coming 48 hours.  The increased violence came a day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met Tuesday in Egypt to continue the direct peace talks that began earlier this month. The leaders were meeting again in Jerusalem on Wednesday, for their third conversation in two days.  Hamas, which control the Gaza strip, have condemned the talks and early this month timed a pair of West Bank shooting attacks to coincide with the opening of negotiations in Washington, killing four Israelis and wounding two.
Please pray that those repsonsible for these rocket attacks are prevented from making further attacks

The Israel Defense Forces killed a Hamas military commander in the West Bank, Israel Radio reported on Friday, in the latest of recent violent clashes between Israel and the Islamist organization.  Hamas has declared its objection to the recent relaunch of direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, saying that Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas does not represent the Palestinian people and is not authorized to negotiate on its behalf.     Speaking to the cabinet earlier this week, Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin said that Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip and which is believed to have operatives working in the PA-ruled West Bank, has issued “an organizational directive to foil the talks.”
    According to the IDF, an Israeli army unit had been conducting a raid for wanted Palestiniains in a village east of Tul Karm, when one of the wanted men, named by Israel Radio as Hamas West Bank strongman Iyad Shilbayeh, began “running suspiciously toward the [IDF] force, refusing to heed the soldiers’ request to stop.” “The unit, feeling threatened, opened fire, killing the suspected,” the IDF Spokesman’s office said, adding that “the incident was being investigated.”   In an escalation of tensions on Wednesday, militants fired two phosphorous mortar shells into Israel from the Hamas-ruled Strip. A total of nine mortar shells were fired on Wednesday, all falling in fields in the Eshkol Regional Council, causing no casualties or damage.
6. IDF Kills Hamas Military Leadwr in the West Bank – Tensiomns Rising    Ha Aretz News   Sept 17th
   Please pray for calm over the Yom Kippur weekend  – often a time of heightened pressure on Israel

    Defense Minister Ehud Barak held initial discussions with defense officials this week about the approaching end of the building freeze in the West Bank. He is trying to find ways to restrict settlement construction by the Defense Ministry, which is the de facto authority in the West Bank, without issuing a new order to suspend construction when the moratorium ends on September 26.   U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday urged Israel to extend the freeze. She told Channel 10 this would be “extremely useful” for making progress in negotiations with the Palestinians.   A senior official familiar with the debate on the construction freeze said new building in the West Bank could be delayed through legal measures for a long time. The ministry is also examining legal steps it can take to delay the construction of 2,000 housing units that had been approved before the construction freeze went into place.
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at his meetings this week with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that he would not extend the moratorium on construction. The official said that, instead of a new suspension order, which would require the approval of both the cabinet and the forum of seven ministers, Israel could reach quiet understandings with the Americans on limiting the construction for several months.  It is expected that such understandings would enable the Americans to persuade the Palestinian Authority not to quit the negotiations, the official said.  Barak is due to leave Saturday night for Washington, where he will meet with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and National Security Advisor General James Jones. He is also scheduled to meet with Clinton.   .  Terrorist Planned to Bomb IDF Event in Paris     Ha Aretz  News  Sept 11th
7.  Barak May Use Legal Loopholes to Impose Defacto Settlement Freeze   Ha Aretz News  Sept 17th
 Please pray that Baraks plans will be foiled

7     A terrorist who planned to bomb an Israel Defense Forces fundraising event in Paris has been arrested in Egypt and extradited to France, the Le Journal du Dimanche reported late Saturday.   The report, which was relayed to the newspaper by French intelligence chief Bernard Squarcini, did not specify when the arrest took place nor did it elaborate on the details of the IDF event in question.  Speaking in an interview with the weekly newspaper, Squarcini said French authorities foil an average of two planned attacks per year, but “one day or another, we’re going to get hit.”   He said the risk of a terrorist attack on French soil has “never been higher” and that “objectively, there are reasons for worry.”
    The intelligence chief added that France’s history as a colonial master in North Africa, its military presence in Afghanistan and a proposal that would ban full-covering face veils in public make the country a prime target for certain radical Islamist groups.  The risk now was as high as in 1995 before of deadly attacks on the Paris Metro by Algerian Islamic extremists, Squarcini told Le Journal.  Squarcini said the threat is threefold, coming from Al-Qaida’s North African affiliate – an Algerian insurgent group that allied itself with the international terror network several years ago and has targeted French interest in the region in the past – radical French converts to Islam and French nationals who have trained with extremist groups in Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia.
Please pray for angelic protection over Israeli interests everywhere in the World

     *  Recommended U-Tube Video Clips  *

NEW    Mulsims taking over in France    http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/world/2010/August/Islamization-of-Paris-a-Warning-to-the-West
     
            The Identity of the Messiah in the Hebrew Scriptures
   http://www.youtube.com/user/israelmedia1#p/a/u/1/mQFWi6cCUtY

            New insights to the battle of Gog & Magog by Chuck Missler  http://www.god.tv/video/play?video=1280 45 minutes

            Israel Under Fire    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMEvrxgv3O0

            Interesting info from an Arab perspective    http://www.shoebat.com/videos/speak2arab.php

            What is Obama planning ?       http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNlaQEYw0q4&feature=player_embedded

            For those who want to boycott Israel       http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbIQto3KPUM&eurl

            Israeli innovation        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHStBGk_D8Y

            what may unfold over the next few months    http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=mpg&mpid=136

85 other YouTube videos about Israel at:http://www.jr.co.il/videos/israel-videos.htm

**************

FINANCES: The Carmel Alert prayer points bulletin is sent out weekly via e-mail.  We also produce a bi-monthly  family ministry newsletter which we prefer to send out by postal mail.  Much of our literature is on our  website at:  www.out-of-zion.com Out of Zion Ministries is answering the call to be a blessing and a light to the nations.   David regularly travels to churches around the world to share the Word of the Lord in respect to the Jewish roots of Christianity, and to bring awareness of the Church’s relation-ship to Israel and  the Jewish people and her responsibility to partner with the Lord in the restoration of  Israel.  We are open to  visiting your congregation if  we are invited.  We are have a vision to take the Gospel to the Jew first and then to the people of other nations.
      The work of  Out of Zion is made possible through the prayerful and financial support of  the Body of Messiah.  We encourage you to seek the Lord as to how He would have you be His & our fellow-workers.   If you wish to become a partner in the restoration & salvation of  Israel, & the restoration of the Church to  her Jewish roots,   please contact us at     kiwi@netvision.net.il.  Your prayer and financial support will go toward our expenses here in Israel and our ministry to the nations.   
            

Obama and DOJ against States rights.

September 16, 2010

     It simply wasn’t enough to sue the State of Arizona and drag it before the United Nations for trying to secure its border and protect its citizens against violent illegal alien cartels…

     … Now, Barack Obama has unleashed his fury on Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

     Reports have surfaced that the Obama Department of Justice (the same Obama Department of Justice that dropped a slam-dunk voter-intimidation suit against the New Black Panthers) is suing Sheriff Arpaio and sending an unmistakable message to law enforcement officers across America… Enforce our immigration laws and face the full wrath of the United States Government.

     Make no mistake. The Obama administration is using every resource at its disposal to destroy Arpaio and advance its Amnesty agenda. But don’t take our word for it. Sheriff Arpaio stated without equivocation: “These actions make it abundantly clear that Arizona, including this Sheriff, is Washington’s new whipping boy. Now it’s time to take the gloves off.”

     We could not agree more, And yet, the silence from Congress is still inexcusably deafening.

     And the time is here and now for our so-called elected leaders in Congress to take a stand. Either they support Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, Sheriff Arpaio, the people of Arizona and the overwhelming majority of Americans who support Arizona’s efforts to secure its borders… or, they support Barack Obama’s smear tactics against the leaders in Arizona and his open borders agenda.

     As Sheriff Arpaio said, “It’s time to take the gloves off.”
Use the hyperlink below to send your urgent and personalized Blast Faxes to the Republican and Democratic Leaders of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives. Or alternatively, send your urgent Blast Faxes to each and every Member of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. That’s over 530 faxes.

Tell them, in no uncertain terms, that Barack Obama has gone too far. He’s refused to enforce our immigration laws. He’s suing the State of Arizona for attempting to enforce immigration laws. He’s placed Arizona in the crosshairs of the United Nations. And now, he’s suing Sheriff Arpaio for attempting to enforce the law.

Tell our elected leaders that enough is enough. It is time to take the gloves off, stand up to Barack Obama and tell him to secure the border now.

If button above does not work, please use this hyperlink.

What Others Are Saying About This Targeting Of Sheriff Arpaio.

     Sheriff Arpaio is no stranger to controversy. He already bears the nickname, “America’s toughest sheriff” for his no-nonsense approach to law enforcement. And according to a number of reports, Mexican cartels have placed a million dollar bounty on Arpaio’s head.

     Apparently, this notoriety has not only made him a target for the cartels, but also has placed him in Obama’s crosshairs.

     As a matter of fact, Arizona State Senator Russell Pearce called Obama’s pursuit of Arpaio a “witch hunt.”

“It’s a witch hunt — that’s exactly what this is. This is the most un-American President in the history of the United States. … For the first time in history a sitting President has sided with a foreign government against a U.S. state. It is outrageous.”

     Bob Driscoll, a former Justice Department Civil Rights Division official who is representing Arpaio said: “It’s a totally political lawsuit. … They want to find evidence of discrimination, but all they’re finding is evidence of law enforcement that includes immigration enforcement.”

     Driscoll added: “Today’s lawsuit by the Department of Justice is part of a deliberate media strategy to ‘get tough’ on Sheriff Arpaio and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, and undermine immigration enforcement by a local sheriff who is trying desperately to make up for this administration’s own indifference to the topic.”

     The AmericanThinker.com wrote: “The Obama administration has taken border non-enforcement to a whole new level. By refusing to offer reasonable assistance to law enforcement and by suing those who simply try to protect the border, the administration is, in effect, placing… cartels, human traffickers, and infiltrating Islamic terrorists above the safety of American citizens. Truly incredible.”
Use the hyperlink below to send your urgent and personalized Blast Faxes to the Republican and Democratic Leaders of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives. Or alternatively, send your urgent Blast Faxes to each and every Member of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. That’s over 530 faxes.

Tell them, in no uncertain terms, that Barack Obama has gone too far. He’s refused to enforce our immigration laws. He’s suing the State of Arizona for attempting to enforce immigration laws. He’s placed Arizona in the crosshairs of the United Nations. And now, he’s suing Sheriff Arpaio for attempting to enforce the law.

Tell our elected leaders that enough is enough. It is time to take the gloves off, stand up to Barack Obama and tell him to secure the border now.

If button above does not work, please use this hyperlink.

Why Pursue Sheriff Arpaio?

     That’s a good question and perhaps the behavior of the Obama Justice Department might provide answers.

     Here are the details. Obama’s Department of Justice initiated an investigation against Sheriff Arpaio some months back for allegedly engaging in “civil rights” violations.

     But hold your horses… after months of investigation, the Obama Justice Department ISN’T suing Arpaio’s office over civil rights violations… instead the Obama Justice Department is contending that Arpaio’s office is refusing to cooperate with its investigation.

     According to The Washington Examiner, the Obama Department of Justice filed suit against Sheriff Arpaio’s office for “refusing to fully cooperate in a federal investigation into allegations that the sheriff and his deputies are guilty of racial discrimination.”

     Arpaio says that accusation is bunk and told The Examiner: “These people in Washington met with my attorneys only a few days ago. And in that meeting, Washington got our cooperation; they admitted they already have thousands of pages of the requested documents; and they were given access to interview my staff and get into my jails.”

     Arpaio added: “They smiled in our faces and then stabbed us in the back with this lawsuit. The Obama administration intended to sue us all along, no matter what we did to try to avert it.”

     Of course, such bait-and-switch tactics have a familiar ring. Didn’t the Obama administration, after all, initially contend that (SB 1070), the Arizona immigration enforcement law, would lead to racial profiling and then sued Arizona on other grounds altogether when it was apparent that the accusation of racial profiling had no merit?

     The Examiner comes to the following conclusion: “As the DOJ lawyers claim Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s lack of cooperation with the feds is ‘unprecedented,’ it should not be lost on anyone that what is actually unprecedented is that a sitting U.S. president is waging a war against Arizona.”

     That just about says it all. As a matter of fact, many are wondering why the Obama Justice Department is investigating Arpaio at all.

     According to Investor’s Business Daily: “Our misnamed Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit against an Arizona sheriff at the top of the administration’s enemies list. Prosecute border sheriffs and sue states but protect the Black Panthers? Gotcha. … What makes the case interesting, as the Washington Examiner’s Byron York reports, is that in September 2008… Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducted its own investigation of Arpaio’s office and procedures and found nothing inappropriate or illegal.”

     You read that right. Obama’s Justice Department decided to investigate Arpaio’s office AFTER ICE concluded that Arpaio’s office was operating totally above board.

     What exactly is going on here? Is this pursuit of Arpaio simply a case of the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing?

     Hardly.

     Sheriff Arpaio, according to Robert M. Engstrom with Human Events, is accusing “the Obama Administration of taking sides against Arizona and trying to use him and Gov. Jan Brewer ‘as puppets.'” Engstrom, quoting Arpaio, added: “’They don’t like us enforcing immigration law,’ he said. ‘I am not going to surrender.’”

     If Arpaio is not surrendering… if he’s ready for the fight, we should be ready for the fight too.
Use the hyperlink below to send your urgent and personalized Blast Faxes to the Republican and Democratic Leaders of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives. Or alternatively, send your urgent Blast Faxes to each and every Member of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. That’s over 530 faxes.

Tell them, in no uncertain terms, that Barack Obama has gone too far. He’s refused to enforce our immigration laws. He’s suing the State of Arizona for attempting to enforce immigration laws. He’s placed Arizona in the crosshairs of the United Nations. And now, he’s suing Sheriff Arpaio for attempting to enforce the law.

Tell our elected leaders that enough is enough. It is time to take the gloves off, stand up to Barack Obama and tell him to secure the border now.

If button above does not work, please use this hyperlink.

Nero May Have Played His Fiddle While Rome Burned But Obama Is Throwing Gasoline On The Fire.

     An overwhelming majority of Americans for years have pleaded with the federal government to secure the border and stop the flood of illegal aliens pouring into the United States.

     But Barack Obama, believing that he knows best, has not only refused to take serious and substantive steps to enforce our immigration laws… he has sued Arizona for attempting to enact reasonable immigration laws… he has hauled Arizona before the United Nations… and now… he’s using every resource at his disposal to go after a local sheriff who is simply attempting to enforce the law.

     Obama’s motives are clear. He wants to shove amnesty for illegal aliens down the throats of the American people at all costs… by any means necessary.

     But unfortunately, as a result of his actions, right before our very eyes, cities in Arizona and across the United States are literally starting to resemble war zones.

     Arizona Governor Jan Brewer acknowledged this horrendous and unfortunate fact when she signed SB 1070 into law, “We cannot sacrifice our safety to the murderous greed of… cartels. We cannot stand idly by as drop houses, kidnappings and violence compromise our quality of life. We cannot delay while the destruction happening south of our international border creeps its way north.”

     Senator Jim DeMint recently echoed those sentiments: “States along the border are facing kidnappings… human trafficking and gang violence and they have a duty to keep their residents safe.”

     Even the former champion of amnesty, Senator John McCain, is acknowledging that “Arizona is under siege…” Phoenix, Arizona is now one of the kidnapping capitals of the world, second only to Mexico City. In fact, the situation is so bad that the government has recently placed travel advisories and in some cases closed large tracts of land as far as 80 miles north or our southern border.

     That’s why Arizona passed SB 1070 and that’s why as many as 22 other states are presently considering similar legislation.

     Gang violence… human trafficking… rampant lawlessness that will extend across the United States from sea-to-shining-sea. Those unfortunate side effects go hand-in-hand with Barack Obama’s Amnesty-for-all vision for America.

     That’s why Obama has placed himself, yet again, in direct opposition to the people. It wasn’t enough to refuse to enforce the law… it wasn’t enough to sue Arizona for attempting to enforce the law… it wasn’t enough to invite the United Nations to his open-borders, pro-Amnesty party.

     Now, Obama is sending an unmistakable message to every law enforcement officer in the country… Enforce the law and we will pursue you.

     The time to fight back is now.
Use the hyperlink below to send your urgent and personalized Blast Faxes to the Republican and Democratic Leaders of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives. Or alternatively, send your urgent Blast Faxes to each and every Member of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. That’s over 530 faxes.

Tell them, in no uncertain terms, that Barack Obama has gone too far. He’s refused to enforce our immigration laws. He’s suing the State of Arizona for attempting to enforce immigration laws. He’s placed Arizona in the crosshairs of the United Nations. And now, he’s suing Sheriff Arpaio for attempting to enforce the law.

Tell our elected leaders that enough is enough. It is time to take the gloves off, stand up to Barack Obama and tell him to secure the border now.

If button above does not work, please use this hyperlink.
 

Jeff Mazzella
President
Center for Individual Freedom
Center for Individual Freedom
917-B King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
703-535-5836
Fax:703-535-5838
CFIF is a 501(c)(4) not-for-profit constitutional advocacy organization with
the mission to protect and defend individual freedoms and individual rights.

Imagine the world without 9/11

September 15, 2010

By Tommy Felts
Contributor

Published September 14, 2010

Imagine the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, never happened.

That’s 2,977 people — police officers, firefighters, emergency personnel, office workers, executives, airline passengers and crews and others — who would’ve lived. Imagine the contributions they could have made, the lives they could have affected or even saved.

Imagine the mothers and fathers who would have returned home from work that day, the families who would have survived to see their loved ones at the next Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Imagine it was just another fall day.

Imagine the flames of the World Trade Center hadn’t been there to spark — directly or indirectly — the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. That’s 6,000 American military personnel who wouldn’t have needed to die in valiant service to their country.

Imagine how different, for better or worse, today’s political landscape might have been. Maybe terrorism and security concerns wouldn’t have helped push President George W. Bush to re-election in 2004. Maybe we would have had President John Kerry. Maybe Barack Obama still would be a senator. Maybe Sarah Palin still would be a governor.

Imagine the country’s focus had been on other issues for the past nine years. Could we have resolved the immigration crisis? Diffused the hostile intentions of Iran and North Korea? Foreseen the economic collapse?

Imagine Americans’ perceptions of Muslims weren’t clouded by terrorism. Imagine Muslims seen as benign as such other religious minorities as Buddhists, Hindus or even the Amish. Imagine there was no controversy over a “mosque” at ground zero.

Imagine there was no ground zero.

Imagine a nation not deeply scarred by the worst attack on U.S. soil.

The possibilities and what-ifs seemingly are endless.

But the grim reality is the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, did happen.

No amount of dreaming or pretending can change that fact — though some certainly would like to do so.

Some say Americans need to move on, to let bygones be bygones. They don’t want us to relive that terrible day, to watch the planes hitting the towers, to see the terrified people jumping from the burning buildings to their deaths below.

But that’s just pretending.

Nine years later, some say the anniversary of the terror attacks on New York City, the Pentagon and the American psyche should be met with calm — not anger. They want to shift our focus to accusations of anti-Muslim bigotry, rather than remembering who or what attacked us — Islamic extremism.

More pretending.

You can change the name of the “war on terror” (now known as the less hostile and aggressive “Overseas Contingency Operation”) and eliminate all wording from the mission that implicates, and thus might offend a certain minority group, but you can’t change the facts of Sept. 11, 2001.

You can’t change the enemy. You can’t whitewash the threat.

To face our enemy, we have to be able to name it.

Islamic extremism.

But too many people don’t want to admit who or what we’re fighting. They don’t even want to admit we still are trying to defeat something. That fact alone might offend someone.

So they pretend the real threat is American foreign policy. They urge empathy and understanding for the terrorists’ motives and struggles. They hypocritically argue Islam is the “religion of peace,” but then shudder in fear of violence and killing when a radical U.S. pastor threatens to burn copies of the Quran and rank-and-file Muslims respond by chanting “Death to America!”

(That’s not to say all Muslims are our enemies, but those extreme enough to actively pursue Americans’ deaths or the country’s destruction certainly are.)

Some folks pretend we’re not at war with Islamic extremism (though it’s unlikely the extremists are willing to return the favor).

And it’s that kind of thinking — and pretending — that allowed the United States to be blindsided by 19 hijackers nine years ago.

If we’re not careful, it’s the same thinking that will enable another successful attack on America and trigger a whole new series of what-ifs.

Imagine that.

Tommy Felts is a columnist based in the Kansas City area and the managing editor of The Ottawa Herald in Ottawa, Kan. He can be reached by e-mail at tommyfelts(at)hotmail.com.

When are Islamists NOT Outraged?

September 14, 2010

Jewish World Review Sept. 13, 2010 / 5 Tishrei, 5771

The Eternal Flame of Muslim Outrage

By Michelle Malkin

 
 
   
 

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Shhhhhhh, we’re told. Don’t protest the Ground Zero mosque. Don’t burn a Koran. It’ll imperil the troops. It’ll inflame tensions. The “Muslim world” will “explode” if it does not get its way, warns sharia-peddling imam Feisal Abdul Rauf. Pardon my national security-threatening impudence, but when is the “Muslim world” not ready to “explode”?

At the risk of provoking the ever-volatile Religion of Perpetual Outrage, let us count the little-noticed and forgotten ways.

Just a few months ago in Kashmir, faithful Muslims rioted over what they thought was a mosque depicted on underwear sold by street vendors. The mob shut down businesses and clashed with police over the blasphemous skivvies. But it turned out there was no need for Allah’s avengers to get their holy knickers in a bunch. The alleged mosque was actually a building resembling London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral. A Kashmiri law enforcement official later concluded the protests were “premeditated and organized to vitiate the atmosphere.”

Indeed, art and graphics have an uncanny way of vitiating the Muslim world’s atmosphere. In 1994, Muslims threatened German supermodel Claudia Schiffer with death after she wore a Karl Lagerfeld-designed dress printed with a saying from the Koran. In 1997, outraged Muslims forced Nike to recall 800,000 shoes because they claimed the company’s “Air” logo looked like the Arabic script for “Allah.” In 1998, another conflagration spread over Unilever’s ice cream logo — which Muslims claimed looked like “Allah” if read upside-down and backward (can’t recall what they said it resembled if you viewed it with 3D glasses).

Even more explosively, in 2002, an al-Qaida-linked jihadist cell plotted to blow up Bologna, Italy’s Church of San Petronio because it displayed a 15th century fresco depicting Mohammed being tormented in the ninth circle of Hell. For years, Muslims had demanded that the art come down. Counterterrorism officials in Europe caught the would-be bombers on tape scouting out the church and exclaiming, “May Allah bring it all down. It will all come down.”

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That same year, Nigerian Muslims stabbed, bludgeoned or burned to death 200 people in protest of the Miss World beauty pageant — which they considered an affront to Allah. Contest organizers fled out of fear of inflaming further destruction. When Nigerian journalist Isioma Daniel joked that Mohammed would have approved of the pageant and that “in all honesty, he would probably have chosen a wife from among them,” her newspaper rushed to print three retractions and apologies in a row. It didn’t stop Muslim vigilantes from torching the newspaper’s offices. A fatwa was issued on Daniel’s life by a Nigerian official in the sharia-ruled state of Zamfara, who declared that “the blood of Isioma Daniel can be shed. It is abiding on all Muslims wherever they are to consider the killing of the writer as a religious duty.” Daniel fled to Norway.

In 2005, British Muslims got all hot and bothered over a Burger King ice cream cone container whose swirly-texted label resembled, you guessed it, the Arabic script for “Allah.” The restaurant chain yanked the product in a panic and prostrated itself before the Muslim world. But the fast-food dessert had already become a handy radical Islamic recruiting tool. Rashad Akhtar, a young British Muslim, told Harper’s Magazine how the ice cream caper had inspired him: “Even though it means nothing to some people and may mean nothing to some Muslims in this country, this is my jihad. I’m not going to rest until I find the person who is responsible. I’m going to bring this country down.”

In 2007, Muslims combusted again in Sudan after an infidel elementary school teacher innocently named a classroom teddy bear “Mohammed.” Protesters chanted, “Kill her, kill her by firing squad!” and “No tolerance — execution!” She was arrested, jailed and faced 40 lashes for blasphemy before being freed after eight days. Not wanting to cause further inflammation, the teacher rushed to apologize: “I have great respect for the Islamic religion and would not knowingly offend anyone, and I am sorry if I caused any distress.”

And who could forget the global Danish cartoon riots of 2006 (instigated by imams who toured Egypt stoking hysteria with faked anti-Islam comic strips)? From Afghanistan to Egypt to Lebanon to Libya, Pakistan, Turkey and in between, hundreds died under the pretext of protecting Mohammed from Western slight, and brave journalists who stood up to the madness were threatened with beheading. It wasn’t really about the cartoons at all, of course. Little-remembered is the fact that Muslim bullies were attempting to pressure Denmark over the International Atomic Energy Agency’s decision to report Iran to the UN Security Council for continuing with its nuclear research program. The chairmanship of the council was passing to Denmark at the time. Yes, it was just another in a long line of manufactured Muslim explosions that were, to borrow a useful phrase, “premeditated and organized to vitiate the atmosphere.”

When everything from sneakers to stuffed animals to comics to frescos to beauty queens to fast-food packaging to undies serves as dry tinder for Allah’s avengers, it’s a grand farce to feign concern about the recruitment effect of a few burnt Korans in the hands of a two-bit attention-seeker in Florida. The eternal flame of Muslim outrage was lit a long, long time ago.

Who is this guy?

September 11, 2010

Barak H. Obama’s law license was inactivated in 2002, his wife’s inactived by court order? (snopes had nothing on this at all – nothing for or against)

There is only one Barack Hussein Obama according to the U. S. Census and he has 27 Social Security numbers and over 80 aliases. (I did a snopes on this and nothing came up here eitther…)

The one he uses now originated in Connecticut where he is not ever reported to have lived. No wonder ALL of his ‘records’ are sealed!!! (I have seen this reported elsewhere as well)

It just gets worse!!!

At least we only have 3 years of this mystery man left before we can replace him.

Was He There?

Who IS He?

I have always wondered why NO ONE ever came forward from Obama’s past
saying they knew him, attended school with him, was his friend, etc.

NO ONE, not one person has ever come forward from his past.

VERY, VERY STRANGE.

This should really be a cause for great concern.

To those who voted for him, YOU HAVE ELECTED THE BIGGEST UNQUALIFIED FRAUD that America has ever known!

This is very interesting stuff. Sort of adds credence to the idea of The Manchurian Candidate thing having happened here!

George Stephanopoulos of ABC news said the same thing during the ’08 campaign. He too was a classmate of BO’s at Columbia class of 1984. He said he never had ONE class with him.

Was he there?

While he is such a great orator, why doesn’t ANYONE in Obama’s college class remember him?

Maybe he never attended class!

Maybe he never attended Columbia ?

He won’t allow Colombia to release his records either.

Suspicious, isn’t it???

NOBODY REMEMBERS OBAMA AT COLUMBIA !!!!!!!

As an undergrad and under the name of “Barry Sotero”, he applied for and received “foreign student aid”! So, is he a “foreigner” or an American??

Looking for evidence of Obama’s past, Fox News contacted 400 Columbia University students from the period when Obama claims to have been there, but none remembered him.

Wayne Allyn Root was, like Obama, a political science major at Columbia who also graduated in 1983.

In 2008, Root says of Obama, “I don’t know a SINGLE PERSON at Columbia that knew him, and they all know me.

I don’t have a classmate who ever knew Barack Obama at Columbia . EVER! Nobody recalls him.

I’m not exaggerating, I’m not kidding.

Root adds that he was also, like Obama, “Class of ’83 political science, pre-law” and says, “You don’t get more exact or closer than
that.

Never met him in my life, don’t know anyone who ever met him.

At the class reunion, our 20th reunion five years ago, who was asked to be the speaker of the class? Me. No one ever heard of Barack!

And five years ago, nobody even knew who he was. The guy who writes the class notes, who’s kind of the, as we say in New York, the “macha” who knows everybody, has yet to find a person, a human who ever met him.

Is that not strange? It’s VERY strange.

“Obama’s photograph does NOT appear in the school’s ‘yearbook’ and Obama consistently declines requests to talk about his years at
Columbia , provide school records, or provide the name of any former classmates or friends while at Columbia .

NOTE: Root graduated as Valedictorian from his high school, Thornton-Donovan School , then graduated from Columbia University in
1983 as a Political Science major (in the same class as Barack Hussein Obama (WAS SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN IN).

Can it be that BHO is a complete fraud??

Read the full report the Obama administration submitted to the UN

September 6, 2010

 

Report of the United States of America I. Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 2

 

Submitted to the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights

In Conjunction with the Universal Periodic Review

I.1 A more perfect union, a more perfect world………………………………………………………………. 2

I.2 The United States and the Universal Periodic Review: approach and methodology ……….. 3

II. The United States and human rights: normative and institutional background………………….. 4

II.1 Human Rights as the ends of government and the means of progress ………………………….. 4

II.2 Enduring commitments …………………………………………………………………………………………. 5

III. A commitment to freedom, equality, and dignity………………………………………………………. 5

III.1 Freedom of expression, religion, association, and political participation…………………….. 5

III.2 Fairness and equality……………………………………………………………………………………………. 8

III.3 Dignity……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 15

IV. A commitment to foster a society where citizens are empowered to exercise their rights 17

IV.1 Education …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 18

IV.2 Health…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 18

IV.3 Housing ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 19

V. A commitment to values in our engagement across borders …………………………………………. 19

V.1 Values and National Security……………………………………………………………………………….. 20

V.2 Values and Immigration ………………………………………………………………………………………. 23

V.3 Values and Trafficking…………………………………………………………………………………………. 24

VI. Conclusion …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 24

Annex 1: Human Rights Treaty Ratification and Reporting ……………………………………………….. 26

Annex 2: Abbreviations …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 28

Annex 3: End Notes ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 29

2 I. Introduction

I.1 A more perfect union, a more perfect world

1. The story of the United States of America is one guided by universal values shared the world over—that all are created equal and endowed with inalienable rights. In the United States, these values have grounded our institutions and motivated the determination of our citizens to come ever closer to realizing these ideals. Our Founders, who proclaimed their ambition “to form a more perfect Union,” bequeathed to us not a static condition but a perpetual aspiration and mission.

2. We present our first Universal Periodic Review (UPR) report in the context of our commitment to help to build a world in which universal rights give strength and direction to the nations, partnerships, and institutions that can usher us toward a more perfect world, a world characterized by, as President Obama has said, “a just peace based on the inherent rights and dignity of every individual.”

3. The U.S. has long been a cornerstone of the global economy and the global order. However, the most enduring contribution of the United States has been as a political experiment. The principles that all are created equal and endowed with inalienable rights were translated into promises and, with time, encoded into law. These simple but powerful principles have been the foundation upon which we have built the institutions of a modern state that is accountable to its citizens and whose laws are both legitimated by and limited by an enduring commitment to respect the rights of individuals. It is our political system that enables our economy and undergirds our global influence. As President Obama wrote in the preface to the recently published National Security Strategy, “democracy does not merely represent our better angels, it stands in opposition to aggression and injustice, and our support for universal rights is both fundamental to American leadership and a source of our strength in the world.” Part of that strength derives from our democracy’s capacity to adopt improvements based upon the firm foundation of our principled commitments. Our democracy is what allows us to acknowledge the realities of the world we live in, to recognize the opportunities to progress toward the fulfillment of an ideal, and to look to the future with pride and hope.

4. The ideas that informed and inform the American experiment can be found all over the world, and the people who have built it over centuries have come from every continent. The American experiment is a human experiment; the values on which it is based, including a commitment to human rights, are clearly engrained in our own national conscience, but they are also universal.

5. Echoing Eleanor Roosevelt, whose leadership was crucial to the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), Secretary of State that “[h]uman rights are universal, but their experience is local. This is why we are committed to holding everyone to the same standard, including ourselves.” From the UDHR to Hillary Clinton has reaffirmed

3 the ensuing Covenants and beyond, the United States has played a central role in the internationalization of human rights law and institutions. We associate ourselves with the many countries on all continents that are sincerely committed to advancing human rights, and we hope this UPR process will help us to strengthen our own system of human rights protections and encourage others to strengthen their commitments to human rights.

I.2 The United States and the Universal Periodic Review: approach and methodology

6. The ultimate objective of the UPR process, and of the UN Human Rights Council, is to enhance the protections for and enjoyment of human rights. Our participation signifies our commitment to that end, and we hope to contribute to it by sharing how we have made and will continue to make progress toward it. Some may say that by participating we acknowledge commonality with states that systematically abuse human rights. We do not. There is no comparison between American democracy and repressive regimes. Others will say that our participation, and our assessment of certain areas where we seek continued progress, reflects doubt in the ability of the American political system to deliver progress for its citizens. It does not. As Secretary Clinton said in a speech on human rights last year, “democracies demonstrate their greatness not by insisting they are perfect, but by using their institutions and their principles to make themselves…more perfect.” Progress is our goal, and our expectation thereof is justified by the proven ability of our system of government to deliver the progress our people demand and deserve.

7. This document gives a partial snapshot of the current human rights situation in the United States, including some of the areas where problems persist in our society. In addressing those areas, we use this report to explore opportunities to make further progress and also to share some of our recent progress. For us, the primary value of this report is not as a diagnosis, but rather as a roadmap for our ongoing work within our democratic system to achieve lasting change. We submit this report with confidence that the legacy of our past efforts to embrace and actualize universal rights foreshadows our continued success.

8. This report is the product of collaboration between the U.S. Government and representatives of civil society from across the United States. Over the last year, senior representatives from more than a dozen federal departments and agencies traveled the country to attend a series of UPR consultations hosted by a wide range of civil society organizations. At these gatherings, individuals presented their concerns and recommendations and often shared stories or reports as they interacted with government representatives. Those conversations shaped the substance and structure of this report. Nearly a thousand people, representing a diversity of communities and viewpoints, and voicing a wide range of concerns, attended these gatherings in New Orleans, Louisiana; New York, New York; El Paso, Texas; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Window Rock, Arizona; the San Francisco Bay Area; Detroit, Michigan; Chicago, Illinois; Birmingham, Alabama; and Washington, D.C. Information about the process was also posted on the website of the U.S. Department of State (www.state). Members of .gov/g/drl/upr

4 the public were encouraged to contribute questions, comments, and recommendations via that site, and many did so. The consultation process followed a familiar tradition of collaboration and discussion between government and civil society that is vital to the strength of our democracy. The U.S. Government is grateful to all those who hosted meetings and shared their views both in those consultations and online. We also welcome constructive comments and recommendations from other governments and non-governmental organizations through the UPR process.

II. The United States and human rights: normative and institutional background

II.1 Human Rights as the ends of government and the means of progress

9. The desire to live freely under a government that would respect and protect human rights was the fundamental motivation of our country’s Founders—human rights have not only been part of the United States since the beginning, they were the reason our nation was created. From its adoption in 1789, the U.S. Constitution has been the central legal instrument of government and the supreme law of the land. The Constitution establishes the structure of government in the United States, starting with the fundamental principle that the will of the people is the basis of the legitimacy of government. The Constitution’s first ten amendments, adopted in 1791 and known as the Bill of Rights, along with the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments, adopted in the wake of the Civil War, protect many rights that, in the twentieth century, became recognized and protected under international human rights law. The principles enshrined in the Constitution and the system of government that it prescribes—including the checks and balances between the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, as well as the reservation of significant authority and autonomy for the fifty states joined together in a federal system—have been the basic building blocks of a government of the people, by the people, and for the people throughout U.S. history.

10. Since our founding, we have made tremendous progress in strengthening the protection of rights and in enhancing and expanding equal opportunities for their enjoyment. Just as the legitimacy of our government is grounded in the will of the people, the credit for progress accrues not only to our Constitution and the government it created, but also to the determination and commitment of our people. Throughout our history, our citizens have used the freedoms provided in the Constitution as a foundation upon which to advocate for changes that would create a more just society. The Constitution provided the means for its own amelioration and revision: its glaring original flaw of tolerating slavery, as well as denying the vote to women, have both been corrected through constitutional reform, judicial review and our democratic processes. Human rights—including the freedoms of speech, association, and religion—have empowered our people to be the engine of our progress.

5 II.2 Enduring commitments

11. As we look to the future, the United States stands committed to the enduring promises of protecting individual freedoms, fairness and equality before the law, and human dignity—promises that reflect the inalienable rights of each person. Our commitment to the rights protected in our Constitution is matched by a parallel commitment to foster a society characterized by shared prosperity. Finally, we are committed to the idea that the values behind the domestic promises articulated in our Constitution should also guide and inform our engagement with the world. Below, we address these commitments in turn.

III. A commitment to freedom, equality, and dignity

12. Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights declares that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” and that they are “endowed with reason and conscience.” This basic truth suggests the kinds of obligations—both positive and negative—that governments have with regard to their citizens.

13. People should be free and should have a say in how they are governed. Governments have an obligation not to restrict fundamental freedoms unjustifiably, and governments need to create the laws and institutions that secure those freedoms.

14. People should enjoy fair treatment reflected in due process and equality before the law. Governments have an obligation not to discriminate or persecute and should establish mechanisms for protection and redress.

15. People should be treated with dignity. Governments have an obligation to protect the security of the person and to respect human dignity.

16. These obligations are what enable people to claim “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as their just entitlements. These same rights are encoded in international human rights law and in our own Constitution.

III.1 Freedom of expression, religion, association, and political participation

Freedom of expression

17. The United States maintains robust protections for freedom of expression. As a general matter, the government does not punish or penalize those who peacefully express their views in the public sphere, even when those views are critical of the government. Indeed, dissent is a valuable and valued part of our politics: democracy provides a marketplace for ideas, and in order to function as such, new ideas must be permitted, even if they are unpopular or potentially

6 offensive. The United States has a free, thriving, and diverse independent press—a feature that existed before the advent of electronic and digital media and that continues today.

18. We also recognize that privacy is linked to free expression, in that individuals need to feel that they can control the boundaries of their self-disclosure and self-expression in order to be able to express themselves freely: surveillance, especially when practiced by a government, can lead to self-censorship. Although protecting the security of all citizens means that no individual can have an absolute right to privacy or expression, any limitations on these rights are determined in a public process, by representatives of the people in the legislature and by the courts.

Freedom of thought, conscience, and religion

19. The desire for freedom from religious persecution has brought millions to our shores. Today, freedom of religion protects each individual’s ability to participate in and share the traditions of his or her chosen faith, to change his or her religion, or to choose not to believe or participate in religious practice.

20. Citizens continue to avail themselves of freedom of religion protections in the Constitution and in state and federal law. For example, in a case this year, a Native American primary school student’s right to wear his hair in a braid, in accordance with his family’s religious beliefs, was upheld pursuant to a Texas religious freedom law.

121. The constitutional prohibition on the establishment of a religion by the government, along with robust protections for freedom of speech and association, have helped to create a multi-religious society in which the freedom to choose and practice one’s faith, or to have no faith at all, is secure.

Freedom of association

22. In the United States, our vibrant civil society exists because people freely come together to meet and share interests and to advocate for political and other causes. In some cases, this takes the form of public gatherings, marches, or protests. In others, people establish or join organizations with a sustained purpose or agenda—today, there are more than 1.5 million non-profit organizations in the United States.

23. Freedom of association also protects workers and their right to organize. The labor movement in the United States has a rich history, and the right to organize and bargain collectively under the protection of the law is the bedrock upon which workers are able to form or join a labor union. Workers regularly use legal mechanisms to address complaints such as threats, discharges, interrogations, surveillance, and wages-and-benefits cuts for supporting a union. These legal regimes are continuously assessed and evolving in order to keep pace with a

7 modern work environment. Our UPR consultations included workers from a variety of sectors, including domestic workers who spoke about the challenges they face in organizing effectively. Currently there are several bills in our Congress that seek to strengthen workers’ rights—ensuring that workers can continue to associate freely, organize, and practice collective bargaining as the U.S. economy continues to change.

Freedom of political participation

24. Every person should have a say in how he or she is governed, and representative democracy has always been the essential foundation of our country’s political system. When the United States was founded, only white men who owned property could vote. In the subsequent centuries, barriers fell for women, African Americans, Hispanics, Asian Americans, and Native Americans, and we continue to work to ensure universal enfranchisement in both law and fact.

25. After decades of work by women’s rights groups and others, women obtained a constitutionally protected right to vote in 1920. Real protection of the right to vote for racial and ethnic minorities came many decades later with the enactment of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a watershed moment in the fight for fairness in our election system. Nearly a century earlier, in the wake of the Civil War, the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution had granted the right to vote to African-American men, although in practice that right continued to be obstructed and denied. Since the Voting Rights Act’s passage, the United States has made substantial progress in breaking down racial barriers to voting, resulting in greater participation in elections and significant increases in the election of members of diverse racial and ethnic groups to public office.

26. The Voting Rights Act prohibits racial discrimination in voting, allowing the Department of Justice or a private citizen to challenge a voting practice as discriminatory in federal court. Under the Act, certain jurisdictions with histories of racial discrimination in voting require federal approval to implement any change affecting voting. The Act also ensures meaningful access to the franchise for non-English speaking citizens. In recent months, the Department of Justice has worked to strengthen enforcement of federal voting rights laws. The Department recently obtained consent decrees against some jurisdictions and concluded a settlement with another, and it is preparing to review thousands of redistricting plans that will be submitted after release of the 2010 Census results to ensure that voting districts are not drawn with the purpose or effect of marginalizing minority voters.

27. Other laws, such as the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 and the Help America Vote Act of 2002, help increase historically low registration rates of minorities and persons with disabilities that have resulted from discrimination, and protect the equal rights of all by facilitating complete and accurate voter rolls.

8 28. Several Members of Congress and other policymakers and advocates have promoted changes to our election administration system including proposals to establish a national mandate for universal voter registration; combat “deceptive practices” designed to deter legitimate voters from voting; require “permanent voter registration” systems; and require fail-safe procedures, so that eligible voters can correct inaccurate voter rolls and vote on the same day. Work continues toward having these proposals enacted into federal law.

III.2 Fairness and equality

29. The United States has always been a multi-racial, multi-ethnic, multi-religious society. Although we have made great strides, work remains to meet our goal of ensuring equality before the law for all. Thirty years ago, the idea of having an African-American president would not have seemed possible; today it is our reality. Our Attorney General, the nation’s top law enforcement officer, is also African-American. Three of the last four Secretaries of State have been women, and two of the last three have been African-American. We have recently appointed our first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice, as well as several LGBT individuals to senior positions in the Executive Branch. And while individual stories do not prove the absence of enduring challenges, they demonstrate the presence of possibilities.

30. In 1947, W.E.B. DuBois testified before the UN General Assembly on the continued pervasive discrimination against African Americans in the United States. In the ensuing decades the U.S. civil rights movement emerged as a quintessential example of citizens using principles of non-violence, law, protest, and public debate to hold their government accountable and to demand that it deliver on their right to equal and fair treatment. The movement led to critical new laws prohibiting discrimination and seeking to ensure equal opportunity for all individuals. The progress in the decades since is a source of pride to our government and to our people. Indeed, our nation’s struggle to banish the legacy of slavery and our long and continuing journey toward racial equality have become the central and emblematic narrative in our quest for a fair and just society that reflects the equality of all.

31. The United States aspires to foster a society in which, as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. put it, the success of our children is determined by the “content of their character.” We are not satisfied with a situation where the unemployment rate for African Americans is 15.8%, for Hispanics 12.4%, and for whites 8.8%, as it was in February 2010. We are not satisfied that a person with disabilities is only one fourth as likely to be employed as a person without disabilities. We are not satisfied when fewer than half of African-American and Hispanic families own homes while three quarters of white families do. We are not satisfied that whites are twice as likely as Native Americans to have a college degree. The United States continues to address such disparities by working to ensure that equal opportunity is not only guaranteed in law but experienced in fact by all Americans.

9 32. In addition to our continuing quest to achieve fairness and equality for racial and ethnic minorities across our society, we wish to call attention to the following groups and issues.

Fairness, equality, and persons with disabilities

33. United States law and practice provide broad and effective protections against, and remedies for, disability-based discrimination. The most notable of these is the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), the first national civil rights legislation in the world to unequivocally prohibit discrimination against persons with disabilities, which was amended in 2008 to ensure broader protections. The intent of these laws is to prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability and remove barriers to the full and equal inclusion of people with disabilities in U.S. society. These laws cover areas of life including education, health care, transportation, housing, employment, technology, information and communication, the judicial system, and political participation. To ensure implementation of these laws, a variety of technical assistance and remedies have been supported with federal funds. For example, training has been provided to the public and private sectors on implementation of the ADA; parent training information centers empower families to understand and claim their rights; and federally funded centers for independent living support the empowerment of individuals with disabilities to live where and with whom they choose in their communities. The Department of Justice and other federal departments and agencies have the authority to enforce these laws and, in this regard, receive complaints and utilize mediation and litigation as appropriate. On July 30, 2009, the United State and is pursuing the necessary steps toward ratification, which the Administration strongly supports. Upon the 20th anniversary of the ADA, President Obama further demonstrated the nation’s commitment to continued vigilance and improvement by announcing new regulations that increase accessibility in a variety of contexts and commit the federal government to hiring more persons with disabilities. Although we recognize that discrimination and access problems persist, which we are actively striving to address, the substantive equality of persons with disabilities in the United States has improved enormously in the past few decades. s signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Fairness, equality, and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) persons

34. In each era of our history there tends to be a group whose experience of discrimination illustrates the continuing debate among citizens about how we can build a more fair society. In this era, one such group is LGBT Americans. In 2003, reversing a prior decision, the Supreme Court struck down a state criminal law against sodomy, holding that criminalizing consensual private sexual practices between adults violates their rights under the Constitution.Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009 , the United States has bolstered its authority to prosecute hate crimes, including those motivated by animus based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. Since 1998, employment discrimination based on sexual orientation has been prohibited in federal employment. Earlier this year, the Administration extended many benefits to the same-sex partners of federal

2With the recent passage of the 10 employees, and supports the pending Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act, a law that would extend additional benefits currently accorded to married couples to same sex partners. Furthermore, President Obama is committed to the repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” statute, which prevents gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military, and both the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Secretary of Defense have testified at congressional hearings in support of its repeal. The President has also supported passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would prohibit discrimination in employment based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Debate continues over equal rights to marriage for LGBT Americans at the federal and state levels, and several states have reformed their laws to provide for same-sex marriages, civil unions, or domestic partnerships. At the federal level, the President supports repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act.

Fairness, equality, and Muslim, Arab-American and South Asian American persons

35. We have worked to ensure fair treatment of members of Muslim, Arab-American, and South Asian communities. The U.S. Government is committed to protecting the rights of members of these groups, and to combating discrimination and intolerance against them. Examples of such measures include the Justice Department’s formation of the 9/11 Backlash Taskforce and civil rights work on religious freedom (e.g., bringing a case on behalf of a Muslim school girl to protect her right to wear a hijab); the civil rights outreach efforts of the Department of Homeland Security; and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s enforcement efforts to combat backlash-related employment discrimination which resulted in over $5 million for victims from 2001-2006.

36. At our UPR consultations, including the meeting in Detroit, Michigan, Muslim, Arab-American, and South Asian citizens shared their experiences of intolerance and pressed for additional efforts to challenge misperceptions and discriminatory stereotypes, to prevent acts of vandalism, and to combat hate crimes. The federal government is committed to ongoing efforts to combat discrimination: the Attorney General’s review of the 2003 Guidance Regarding the Use of Race by Federal Law Enforcement Agencies (discussed below), as well as efforts to limit country-specific travel bans, are examples.

Fairness, equality, and women

37. As one of President Obama’s first official acts, he signed into law the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, which helps women who face wage discrimination recover their lost wages. Shortly thereafter, the President created the White House Council on Women and Girls to seek to ensure that American women and girls are treated fairly and equally in all matters of public policy. Thus, for instance, the Administration supports the Paycheck Fairness Act, which will help ensure that women receive equal pay for equal work. Our recent health care reform bill also lowers costs and offers greater choices for women, and ends insurance company discrimination against them. Moreover, the Administration established the first White House Advisor on

11 Violence Against Women, appointed two women to the U.S. Supreme Court, and created an unprecedented position of Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues to mobilize support for women around the world. The Obama Administration strongly supports U.S. ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women and is working with our Senate toward this end.

Fairness, equality, and Native Americans

38. The U.S. took the UPR process to “Indian Country”. One of our UPR consultations was hosted on tribal land in Arizona, the New Mexico consultation addressed American Indian and Alaska Native issues, and other consultations included tribal representatives. The United States has a unique legal relationship with federally recognized tribes. By virtue of their status as sovereigns that pre-date the federal Union, as well as subsequent treaties, statutes, executive orders, and judicial decisions, Indian tribes are recognized as political entities with inherent powers of self-government. The U.S. government therefore has a government-to-government relationship with 564 federally recognized Indian tribes and promotes tribal self-governance over a broad range of internal and local affairs. The United States also recognizes past wrongs and broken promises in the federal government’s relationship with American Indians and Alaska Natives, and recognizes the need for urgent change. Some reservations currently face unemployment rates of up to 80 percent; nearly a quarter of Native Americans live in poverty; American Indians and Alaska Natives face significant health care disparities; and some reservations have crime rates up to 10 times the national average. Today we are helping tribes address the many issues facing their communities.

39. In November of last year, President Obama hosted a historic summit with nearly 400 tribal leaders to develop a policy agenda for Native Americans where he emphasized his commitment to regular and meaningful consultation with tribal officials regarding federal policy decisions that have tribal implications. In March, the President signed into law important health provisions for American Indians and Alaska Natives. In addition, President Obama recognizes the importance of enhancing the role of tribes in Indian education and supports Native language immersion and Native language restoration programs.

40. Addressing crimes involving violence against women and children on tribal lands is a priority. After extensive consultations with tribal leaders, Attorney General Eric Holder announced significant reform to increase prosecution of crimes committed on tribal lands. He hired more Assistant U.S. Attorneys and more victim-witness specialists. He created a new position, the National Indian Country Training Coordinator, who will work with prosecutors and law enforcement officers in tribal communities. The Attorney General is establishing a Tribal Nations Leadership Council to provide ongoing advice on issues critical to tribal communities.

41. On July 29, 2010, President Obama signed the Tribal Law and Order Act, requiring the Justice Department to disclose data on cases in Indian Country that it declines to prosecute and

12 granting tribes greater authority to prosecute and punish criminals. The Act also expands support for Bureau of Indian Affairs and Tribal officers. It includes new provisions to prevent counterfeiting of Indian-produced crafts and new guidelines and training for domestic violence and sex crimes, and it strengthens tribal courts and police departments and enhances programs to combat drug and alcohol abuse and help at-risk youth. These are significant measures that will empower tribal governments and make a difference in people’s lives.

42. In April 2010, at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice announced that the United States would undertake a review of its position on the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. That multi-agency review is currently underway in consultation with tribal leaders and with outreach to other stakeholders.

Fairness and equality at work

43. The United States is committed to continuing to root out discrimination in the workplace, and the federal government is committed to vigorously enforcing laws to that end. The Justice Department and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have reinvigorated efforts to enforce Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, and religion, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which prohibits employment discrimination based on age. Both laws also prohibit retaliation against employees who bring charges of discrimination in the workplace.

44. In recognition of discrimination’s long-term effects, for 45 years, working through the Department of Labor and other agencies, the federal government has required private companies with which it conducts significant business to take proactive steps to increase the participation of minorities and women in the workplace when they are underrepresented, and to ensure fairness in recruiting, hiring, promotion, and compensation. In May 2010, the Department of Labor chaired the first meeting since 2000 of the President’s Committee on the International Labor Organization (ILO), which coordinates U.S. policy toward the ILO. The Committee agreed to work toward the successful ratification of ILO Convention No. 111 (to combat discrimination at work) and directed a subgroup to resume work on reviewing the feasibility of other conventions for ratification.

Fairness and equality in housing

45. The United States protects citizens from discrimination in housing through the Fair Housing Act of 1968, which prohibits discrimination in housing on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, or disability. Housing providers, both public and private, as well as other entities, such as municipalities, banks, and homeowners’ insurance companies, are all covered by the Act. There is also a robust legal infrastructure in place for the investigation and prosecution of housing discrimination claims brought under the Act.

13 Additionally, the 1974 Equal Credit Opportunity Act prohibits discrimination in the extension of credit, encompassing the actions of mortgage lenders and banks.

46. Following the recent economic crisis, the issue of predatory lending, and particularly discriminatory lending, is an area of enforcement focus. The recession in the United States was fueled largely by a housing crisis, which coincided with some discriminatory lending practices. The subsequent foreclosure crisis has disproportionately affected communities of color, and the federal government has focused resources and efforts to determine whether and where discrimination took place, as well as to ensure greater oversight going forward to prevent similar crises in the future. In this respect President Obama signed major financial reform legislation in 2010 that includes a new consumer protection bureau, among other provisions.

Fairness and equality in education

47. The United States is committed to providing equal educational opportunities to all children, regardless of their individual circumstances, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, or disability. Consistent with this commitment, the federal government uses educational programs to ensure that federal dollars assist underserved students and develop strategies that will help such students succeed. The federal government has also taken steps to ensure that students with disabilities have access to technology, and to provide low-income students and students of color with increased access to early learning and college. In addition, the Department of Education administers and promotes programs that seek to provide financial aid to all students in need; promotes educational equity for women and students of color; assists school districts in offering educational opportunities to Native Hawaiians, American Indians, and Alaska Natives; and provides grants to strengthen historically Black colleges and universities and other institutions serving previously underserved populations.

48. Additionally, the Departments of Justice and Education enforce numerous laws, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act of 1972 (Title IX), and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, and age with regard to education. In this capacity, the Justice Department is a party to more than 200 court cases addressing equal opportunities for students, and is involved in numerous out-of-court investigations, many of which have led to settlement agreements. The Department of Education investigates and resolves civil rights complaints filed by individuals, resolving 6,150 such complaints in the most recent fiscal year, and initiates compliance reviews where information suggests widespread discrimination. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires public schools to make available to all eligible children with disabilities a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment appropriate to their individual needs.

14 49. The federal government is working closely with civil society groups–the representatives of which frequently raised the issue of education in our UPR consultations—and with state and local education authorities in our fifty states to address the factors that contribute to the education “achievement gap,” and to ensure equality and excellence for all children in public schools, and particularly African-American and Hispanic children and children for whom English is a second language, who, like others, find linguistic discrimination a barrier to full participation.

Fairness and equality in law enforcement

50. The United States recognizes that racial or ethnic profiling is not effective law enforcement and is not consistent with our commitment to fairness in our justice system. For many years, concerns about racial profiling arose mainly in the context of motor vehicle or street stops related to enforcement of drug or immigration laws. Since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the debate has also included an examination of law enforcement conduct in the context of the country’s effort to combat terrorism. Citizens and civil society have advocated forcefully that efforts by law enforcement to prevent future terrorist attacks must be consistent with the government’s goal to end racial and ethnic profiling.

51. In addition to the U.S. Constitution, there are several federal statutes and regulations that impose limits on the use of race or ethnicity by law enforcement in their decision-making and enforcement activities. In particular, title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, prohibits discrimination based on race, color or national origin in all federally assisted programs or activities, and 42 U.S.C. §14141 provides the Department of Justice with a cause of action to sue police departments for injunctive relief if they are engaging in a pattern or practice of unlawful conduct, including violations of non-discrimination mandates.

52. The U.S. Government’s efforts to combat racial and ethnic profiling include increasing enforcement of federal anti-profiling statutes, as well as an examination of federal law enforcement policies and practices. In late 2009, the Attorney General initiated an internal review of the Justice Department’s 2003 Guidance Regarding the Use of Race by Federal Law Enforcement Agencies to determine whether it is effective, and will recommend any changes that may be warranted.

53. On August 3, 2010, President Obama signed a law that reduces sentencing disparities between powder cocaine and crack cocaine offenses, capping a long effort—one discussed at our UPR consultations—that arose out of the fact that those convicted of crack cocaine offenses are more likely to be members of a racial minority.

54. The Administration is also committed to ensuring that the United States complies with its international obligations to provide consular notification and access for foreign nationals in U.S.

15 custody, including the obligations arising from the

Avena decision of the International Court of Justice. III.3 Dignity

Safeguards for dignity in law enforcement and criminal justice

55. Law enforcement is one of the fundamental duties of any state. Our commitment to the inalienable rights of each person guides our efforts to ensure that our law enforcement system reflects and respects those rights.

56. The U.S. Constitution, as well as federal and state statutes, provides a number of substantive and procedural protections for individuals accused of committing crimes, those being held for trial, and those who are held in prisons or jails. These include the right to be protected from unreasonable search and seizures, the right to due process under the law, the right to equal protection under the law, the right to an attorney, the right to remain silent during a criminal proceeding, the right to be protected from excessive bail in federal prosecutions, the right to be informed of the nature of the charges filed and of potential punishments, the right to a speedy and public trial, the right to cross-examine witnesses at trial, the right to an impartial jury of peers before someone can be sentenced to a year or more in prison, the right to be protected against being tried for the same crime twice, and the right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment in all prosecutions. (These constitutional rights are generally reflected, at times with different terminology, in international human rights law instruments to which the U.S. is party. In some respects, our constitutional rights go beyond those guaranteed in international law.)

57. These protections help to ensure that our process for determining criminal sanctions, including those that deprive individuals of their liberty, is fairly designed and implemented. Nonetheless many in civil society continue to raise concerns about our nation’s criminal justice system at federal and state levels, including in the areas of capital punishment, juvenile justice, racial profiling, and racial disparities in sentencing. We are committed to continued vigilance in our effort to enforce the law in a manner consistent with the Constitution and with the rights and dignity of all citizens.

Dignity and incarceration

58 The United States is committed to protecting the rights of incarcerated persons, and we regularly investigate, monitor compliance, and, where necessary, take legal action to secure the constitutional rights of incarcerated people, including the right to practice their religion.

59. We have also taken action to prevent assaults on the dignity of prisoners that may come from other prisoners. The independent National Prison Rape Elimination Commission, established by Congress under the Prison Rape Elimination Act, was charged with studying the

16 impact of sexual assault in correction and detention facilities and developing national standards for the detection, prevention, reduction, and punishment of prison rape. In 2009, the Commission released its report which detailed progress made in improving the safety and security in these facilities as well as areas still in need of reform. The United States is working to address these issues. The Department of Justice is in the process of developing comprehensive regulations to effectively reduce rape in our nation’s prisons.

60. In addition to working to ensure that prisons and jails meet constitutional standards, alternatives to incarceration are being utilized by states, including intensive probation supervision, boot camps, house arrest, and diversion to drug treatment.

Dignity and criminal sanctions

61. The United States may impose the death penalty for the most serious crimes and subject to exacting procedural safeguards. Federal laws providing for the death penalty most often involve serious crimes in which death results. Several non-homicide crimes may also result in the imposition of a death sentence, e.g

62. The federal government utilizes a system for carefully examining each potential federal death penalty case. This system operates to help ensure that the death penalty is not applied in an arbitrary, capricious, or discriminatory manner, and to promote indigent defendants receiving competent representation by qualified attorneys. Many of our states have adopted procedures of their own to provide experienced counsel for indigent defendants. In addition, existing federal law permits DNA testing in relevant federal and state cases.

63. In 2009, the death penalty was applied in 52 cases in the United States, about half the number of a decade earlier. The death penalty is authorized by 35 states, the federal government, and the U.S. military. There are currently 16 jurisdictions without the death penalty. While state governments retain primary responsibility for establishing procedures and policies that govern state capital prosecutions, the Supreme Court has excluded from application of the death penalty those offenders who, at the time of the offense, were under age 18

., espionage, treason, and several carefully circumscribed capital offenses intended to target the threat of terrorist attacks resulting in widespread loss of life. 3 or had intellectual disabilities.4Dignity and juvenile offenders

64. In 1974, Congress enacted the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA), to ensure that youth were not treated merely as “little adults,” and that they received necessary and appropriate rehabilitative services in the least restrictive environment consistent with public safety. The JJDPA created an office within the Justice Department dedicated to supporting federal, state, and local efforts to prevent juvenile crime, improving the juvenile justice system,

17 and addressing the needs of juvenile crime victims. This office provides funding to states for system improvement, as well as funding for research to identify optimal prevention and intervention strategies for youth in the juvenile justice system or at risk of entering it. Our UPR consultations included direct testimony from juvenile offenders who underscored the importance of intervention strategies and programs to help juvenile offenders find education and employment so that they can become self-sufficient.

65. The Department of Justice also has a robust program to protect the rights of juveniles in juvenile justice facilities. For example, in July 2010, the Department entered an agreement with the State of New York regarding unconstitutional conditions in four upstate facilities. The agreement, in addition to limiting the kinds of restraints that can be used, mandates adequate mental health and substance abuse services.

66. In May 2010, the Supreme Court ruled that sentences of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for juveniles who commit non-homicide offenses violate the Constitution’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

5IV. A commitment to foster a society where citizens are empowered to exercise their rights

67. The paradigm elucidated in Franklin Roosevelt’s 1941 “Four Freedoms” speech became a reference point for many in the international human rights movement. On subjects such as “freedom from want,” the United States has focused on democratic solutions and civil society initiatives while the U.S. courts have defined our federal constitutional obligations narrowly and primarily by focusing on procedural rights to due process and equal protection of the law. But as a matter of public policy, our citizens have taken action through their elected representatives to help create a society in which prosperity is shared, including social benefits provided by law, so that all citizens can live what Roosevelt called “a healthy peacetime life.” Often this has included safeguards for the most vulnerable in our society—including the young, the old, the poor, and the infirm. In the wake of the Civil War, legislation was passed to support the well-being of widows and veterans, and to provide land to former slaves. By the early 20

th century, all of our states had recognized that children needed schooling in order to become free and engaged citizens and had instituted free education for all. During the Great Depression, new programs were introduced to ensure the security of those who could no longer work. In the 1960s, several administrations announced a “war on poverty,” and programs were established to provide health care for seniors and the very poor. And this year saw the passage of major legislation that will greatly expand the number of Americans who have health insurance. In every case, the creation of these programs has reflected a popular sense that the society in which we want to live is one in which each person has the opportunity to live a full and fulfilling life. That begins, but does not end, with the exercise of their human rights.18 IV.1 Education

68. Through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the current Administration has made an unprecedented financial commitment of almost $100 billion to education. In November 2009, the Administration announced the Race to the Top program, a $4.35 billion fund that is the largest competitive education grant program in U.S. history. It is designed to provide incentives to states to implement large-scale, system-changing reforms that improve student achievement, narrow achievement gaps, and increase graduation and college enrollment rates. Additionally, Recovery Act funds are being used to promote high-quality early childhood education, provide an increase in available financial aid and loans for postsecondary school, and provide $12 billion for community colleges to give access to workers who need more education and training.

IV.2 Health

69. The United States has been the source of many significant innovations in modern medicine that have alleviated suffering and cured disease for millions in our own country and around the world. This year, we also made significant progress by enacting major legislation that expands access to health care for our citizens.

70. On March 23, 2010, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law. The Act makes great strides toward the goal that all Americans have access to quality, affordable health care. The law is projected to expand health insurance coverage to 32 million Americans who would otherwise lack health insurance, significantly reduces disparities in accessing high-quality care, and includes substantial new investments in prevention and wellness activities to improve public health. The law also includes important consumer protections, such as prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage to people based on pre-existing conditions or medical history, which disproportionately impacts older and sicker populations.

71. The law increases access to care for underserved populations by expanding community health centers that deliver preventive and primary care services. The law will also help our nation reduce disparities and discrimination in access to care that have contributed to poor health. For example, African Americans are 29 percent more likely to die from heart disease than non-Hispanic whites. Asian American men suffer from stomach cancer 114 percent more often than non-Hispanic white men. Hispanic women are 2.2 times more likely to be diagnosed with cervical cancer than non-Hispanic white women. American Indians and Alaska Natives are 2.2 times as likely to have diabetes as non-Hispanic whites. Additionally, these racial and ethnic groups accounted for almost 70 percent of the newly diagnosed cases of HIV and AIDS in 2003.

672. The Act will reduce disparities like these through access to preventive services; investment in chronic disease control and prevention; enhanced data collection to support

19 population-specific epidemiological research; and recruitment of health professionals from diverse backgrounds.

73. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act will help more Americans get the care they need to live healthy lives and ensure more Americans are free to learn, work, and contribute to their communities.

IV.3 Housing

74. The ability to access quality and affordable housing has a substantial impact on a person’s health, education, and economic opportunities. Although we are fortunate to have a high-quality housing stock and a high percentage of homeownership, meeting our nation’s housing needs will require continued effort, particularly in expanding the availability of affordable housing in all communities as our population grows. This was a topic frequently raised by citizens in our consultations, and our meetings in New York and New Orleans, included visits to public housing facilities and discussions with residents.

75. Federal housing assistance programs play an important role in covering the difference between the rents that low-income families are able to afford and the cost of rental housing. The main federal assistance programs to help households access affordable housing are the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8), project-based Section 8 rental assistance, and public housing. These programs are intended to reduce housing costs to about 30 percent of household income.

76. We are creating new solutions to address the challenge of homelessness, which often coincides with other vulnerabilities such as mental illness. $190 million in new funding announced in July, 2010, will provide support to 550 local projects that will offer critically needed housing and support services to nearly 20,000 homeless individuals and families. This comes on top of the nearly $1.4 billion awarded last December to renew funding to more than 6,400 existing local programs. Moreover, the Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program, part of the Recovery Act, has helped prevent and end homelessness for nearly a half million people since it became law last year.

V. A commitment to values in our engagement across borders

77. The United States understands its role as a cornerstone in an international system of cooperation to preserve global security, support the growth of global prosperity, and progress toward world peace based on respect for the human rights and dignity of every person.

78. Our own efforts to build such a world include our role as the world’s largest donor of development aid—including our commitment to disaster relief as seen recently in Haiti and Pakistan. And they include a commitment to using “smart power” in our foreign policy,

20 including a focus on honest, determined diplomacy and on harnessing the full potential of international institutions to facilitate cooperation.

79. We also know that although we never welcome the use of force, wisdom and necessity will sometimes require it. As President Obama said in his Nobel Lecture, “To say that force may sometimes be necessary is not a call to cynicism—it is a recognition of history; the imperfections of man and the limits of reason.”

80. The fundamental truth which grounds the principles of government enshrined in our Constitution—that each person is created with equal value from which flows inalienable rights—is not an exclusively American truth; it is a universal one. It is the truth that anchors the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it is the truth that underpins the legitimate purposes and obligations not just of our government, but of all governments.

81. We are committed to that universal truth, and so we are committed to principled engagement across borders and with foreign governments and their citizens. This commitment includes, in the words of our Declaration of Independence, according “decent respect to the opinions of mankind,” and seeking always to preserve and protect the dignity of all persons, because the values that we cherish apply everywhere and to everyone.

V.1 Values and National Security

82. The United States is currently at war with Al Qaeda and its associated forces. President Obama has made clear that the United States is fully committed to complying with the Constitution and with all applicable domestic and international law, including the laws of war, in all aspects of this or any armed conflict. We start from the premise that there are no law-free zones, and that everyone is entitled to protection under law. In his Nobel Lecture, the President made clear that “[w]here force is necessary, we have a moral and strategic interest in binding ourselves to certain rules of conduct…[E]ven as we confront a vicious adversary that abides by no rules…the United States of America must remain a standard bearer in the conduct of war.”

Detention and treatment of detainees

83. On his second full day in office, President Obama acted to implement this vision by issuing three Executive Orders relating to U.S. detention, interrogation, and transfer policies and the Guantánamo Bay detention facility.

84. Executive Order 13491,

Ensuring Lawful Interrogations, directed that individuals detained in any armed conflict shall in all circumstances be treated humanely and shall not be subjected to violence to life and person, nor to outrages upon personal dignity, whenever such individuals are in the custody or under the effective control of the United States Government or detained within a facility owned, operated, or controlled by the United States. Such individuals shall not be subjected to any interrogation technique or approach that is not authorized by and 21 , which explicitly prohibits threats, coercion, physical abuse, and water boarding. Individuals detained in armed conflict must be treated in conformity with all applicable laws, including Common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, which the President and the Supreme Court have recognized as providing “minimum” standards of protection in all noninternational armed conflicts, including in the conflict with Al Qaeda.22 detainees have been repatriated, and one has been transferred to the United States for prosecution. The Administration remains committed to closure of the Guantánamo detention facility.

88. Executive Order 13493,

Privacy

89. Freedom from arbitrary and unlawful interference with privacy is protected under the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution and federal statutes. In addition, state and local laws and regulations provide robust protections of individuals’ right to privacy and rigorous processes to ensure that investigative authorities are undertaken consistent with the Constitution.

90. Protecting our national interests may involve new arrangements to confronting threats like terrorism, but these structures and practices must always be in line with our Constitution and preserve the rights and freedoms of our people. Although the departments and agencies of the U.S. Government involved in surveillance and the collection of foreign intelligence information comply with a robust regime of laws, rules, regulations, and policies designed to protect national security and privacy, significant concerns in these areas have been raised by civil society, including concerns that relevant laws have been made outdated by technological changes, and that privacy protections need to be applied more broadly and methodically to surveillance.

91. The 2001 USA PATRIOT Act expanded intelligence collection authorities under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which regulates electronic surveillance and physical searches conducted to acquire foreign intelligence information. The U.S. Executive Branch acknowledged in 2005 that the U.S. National Security Agency had been intercepting without a court order certain international communications where the government had a reasonable basis to conclude that one person was a member of, or affiliated with, Al Qaeda or a member of an organization affiliated with Al Qaeda and where one party was outside the United

Review of Detention Policy Options, established a task force to review and facilitate significant policy decisions regarding broader detention questions. This Special Task Force on Detention Policy has reviewed available options for the apprehension, detention, trial, transfer, release, or other disposition of individuals captured or apprehended in connection with armed conflicts and counterterrorism operations. As a matter of domestic law, the Obama Administration has not based its claim of authority to detain individuals at Guantánamo and in Afghanistan on the President’s inherent constitutional powers, but rather on legislative authority expressly granted to the President by Congress in 2001. The Administration has expressly acknowledged that international law informs the scope of our detention authority. The President has also made clear that we have a national security interest in prosecuting terrorists, either before Article III courts or military commissions, and that we would exhaust all available avenues to prosecute Guantánamo detainees before deciding whether it would be appropriate to continue detention under the laws of war. Working with our Congress, we have revised our military commissions to enhance their procedural protections, including prohibiting introduction of any statements taken as a result of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment. 23 and a series of amendments to FISA. 24 government has the authority to set and enforce immigration law. That action is ongoing; parts of the law are currently enjoined.

96. President Obama remains firmly committed to fixing our broken immigration system, because he recognizes that our ability to innovate, our ties to the world, and our economic prosperity depend on our capacity to welcome and assimilate immigrants. The Administration will continue its efforts to work with the U.S. Congress and affected communities toward this end.

V.3 Values and Trafficking

97. In June 2010, the United States issued its 10th annual Trafficking in Persons Report outlining the continuing challenges posed by human trafficking across the globe and, for the first time, included a ranking and full narrative of the United States. The narrative includes detailed information about U.S. anti-trafficking efforts undertaken by more than 10 federal agencies and its pursuit of policies, partnerships, and practices aimed at protecting victims, preventing trafficking, and prosecuting traffickers.

98. Hallmarks of the U.S. approach to combating human trafficking include a) vigorous prosecution of traffickers, and funding task forces throughout the nation comprised of local, state and federal law enforcement and a non-governmental victim service provider; b) a victim-centered approach that recognizes victims require specialized care and are an integral part of any investigation and/or prosecution; c) comprehensive victim services such as shelter, health care, mental health care, food, safety, legal services, interpretation, victim advocacy, immigration relief, education, job skills, employment placement, family reunification, and reintegration; d) temporary immigration relief and work authorization for victims assisting investigations and prosecutions and longer term immigration relief for certain victims and their family members which may then lead to permanent residence and citizenship; e) a coordinated identification and enforcement approach among labor, border, and criminal enforcement; and f) an expansive view of prevention activities that includes strengthening labor protections and enforcement, addressing demand for commercial sex, and working with civil society to rid corporate supply chains of forced labor.

99. The U.S. stands out in terms of the sophistication and breadth of its anti-trafficking efforts. Furthermore, we provide substantial international assistance aimed at preventing trafficking in persons, protecting victims, and prosecuting traffickers.

VI. Conclusion

100. The United States views participation in this UPR process as an opportunity to discuss with our citizenry and with fellow members of the Human Rights Council our accomplishments, challenges, and vision for the future on human rights. We welcome observations and

25 recommendations that can help us on that road to a more perfect union. Delivering on human rights has never been easy, but it is work we will continue to undertake with determination, for human rights will always undergird our national identity and define our national aspirations.

26 Annex 1: Human Rights Treaty Ratification and Reporting

The United States is at present Party to the following multilateral human rights related treaties:

• Slavery Convention and its amending Protocol;

• Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery;

• Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees;

• Inter-American Convention on the Granting of Political Rights to Women;

• Convention on the Political Rights of Women;

• Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide;

• ILO Convention No. 105 concerning the Abolition of Forced Labor;

• International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

• Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment;

• International Convention on the Elimination of All Forums of Racial Discrimination;

• ILO Convention 182 Concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor;

• Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict; and

• Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution, and Child Pornography.

The United States has signed but not ratified the following multilateral human rights treaties:

• International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;

• American Convention on Human Rights;

• Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women;

• Convention on the Rights of the Child; and

• International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

In addition, the United States has entered into many bilateral treaties (including consular treaties and treaties of friendship, commerce and navigation) that contain provisions guaranteeing various rights and protections to nationals of foreign countries on a reciprocal basis. In some cases, these may be invoked directly in United States courts for that purpose.

Note that shorter forms of these complete treaty names are used in the UPR report, e.g., “Convention Against Torture.”

In addition to accepting human rights obligations under the above-referenced treaties to which it is a party, the United States has made human rights commitments through numerous

27 other instruments, including the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 1948 American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man.

The United States regularly submits lengthy and detailed reports on its implementation of several of the human rights treaties listed above, specifically the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention against Torture, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forums of Racial Discrimination, and the two Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. A compilation of that reporting is posted on the State Department’s website, at

http://www.state.gov/g/drl/hr/treaties/index.htm

Vote of No Confidence…

September 6, 2010

From: Bob,

Dear Friend,

There is a widespread growing distrust among Americans of President
Obama and his ideological basis for “change.” His imperialistic style
of leadership has put him out of touch with grassroots Americans. I am
among those disenfranchised citizens.

I have just signed Liberty Counsel’s “Vote of No Confidence” Statement,
which is a practical way for concerned Americans to express their
increasing disillusionment with the failed leadership of the Obama
presidency. This Statement is a powerful call to stop his agenda of
progressive socialism and its destruction of the very foundations
undergirding the United States of America.

Please consider joining me in expressing your “Vote of No Confidence”
concerning our socialist, agenda-driven President.

Here is the link to the “Vote of No Confidence” Statement:
http://www.libertyaction.org/316/petition.asp?PID=26246550&NID=1

Thanks for joining me,

 Bob