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138 items tagged "Israel"

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The Olympic Games and the Jewish People.

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 25 August 2016 22:00
israeliteamHere we saw Israelis and Jews slaughtered by Palestinian Arab terrorists on prime time television. While Israel was bringing the bodies of our finest back home for burial the Games barely missed a beat and, today, the non-state of Palestine is allowed to participate even as they reject the notion of living in peace alongside the Jewish state of Israel, and even as the Israeli athletes gather at the Olympic Village to remember their fallen sporting comrades.
 
Even so, we turn up to participate in the spirit of the Olympics to show the world, and ourselves, our finest sporting face, even if the door to the shared bus with the Lebanese delegation is slammed in our face, or when the Saudis refuse to compete with us, or when the Egyptians, who are supposed to have signed a peace agreement with us, refuse to shake our hand.
 
Was it coincidence that this Egyptian's name was Islam?
 
Despite all this rejection, and the inability of the Olympic Organizing Committee to stamp out the unsporting hate that is an anathema of the raison d'etre of the Olympic movement, Israel will continue to show up, strive to do our best and, where possible, to win medals and bring pride to our nation and to the Jewish People.
 
Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. He is also the author of the best-selling books, ‘BDS for IDIOTS’ and ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS & Anti-Semitism.’
 
Barry ShawBarry Shaw
The writer is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israeli Institute for Strategic Studies. He is also the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism.’

Coptic Pope’s trip to Israel stirs hope to end ban on visits

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 06 December 2015 22:14
Coptic Popes in IsraelWhen the subject is Israel, passions flare. In Egypt last week, a hornet’s nest of reactions surrounded Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II’s decision to go to Jerusalem upon the death of the Coptic Church’s second-in-command, Bishop Abraham, who was head of the Jerusalem and Near East Orthodox Diocese in Jerusalem since 1992. Respectful of the bishop’s last will and testament designating Jerusalem as his final resting place, Tawadros II led a delegation of clergy from Cairo to Israel. 
 
When the church announced the news of Pope Tawadros II’s trip to lead the bishop’s funeral, angry reactions flooded the Egyptian media -- writers, intellectuals and politicians ran the gamut of speculation and opinion over the “real” reasons for the pope’s visit. In order to go to Israel, Tawadros II had to disobey the Coptic Orthodox 1980 Holy Synod Resolution inherited from his predecessor, Pope Shenuda III even though he pointedly upheld the resolution upon his installation three years ago. The edict forbids Orthodox Christians to travel to Israel without exception.
 
Background
Upon Egypt’s signature to the Camp David agreement (the peace treaty forged between Israel and Egypt in 1978) the Coptic Orthodox Church issued a ban on travel to Israel for all its members and added ecclesiastical sanctions that are still in place today. The Holy Synod of March 26, 1980, forbids Coptic Orthodox to pilgrimage to the Holy Land under any and all circumstances -- a stance taken in the wake of Pope Shenuda III’s refusal to accept President Sadat’s invitation to travel with a state delegation to Israel back in the late 70’s. 
 
The dispute between the two leaders reached scandalous proportions when in September 1981 President Sadat removed the pope from his seat and confined him to asylum in the Wadi Natrun Monastery. Military tanks guarded the pope’s quarters until his release and reinstatement years later under the Mubarak regime. 
 
Shenuda III was not at odds with church policy upon his rejection of Sadat’s invitation. He was consistent with Pope Cyril VI’s earlier decision to stand with Nasser after the 1967 war in solidarity with Arab countries against the unity of Jerusalem with imposing an Israel-visit ban upon the church. In each case, the church body was forced to relinquish visits to Israel and now in place for more than four decades.
 
Copts favor honesty over deception
Copts are in favor of the pope’s trip for the funeral mass and now use the issue to vocally challenge the 1980 Resolution. For years, deceptive practices have been used by the community to skirt the it. Copts travel from Egypt to Israel via Jordan (and use letters from other church denominations to obtain visas) just to avoid confrontation with Orthodox sanctions. Now the pope’s delegation to Israel highlights the hypocrisy of church leaders as well as its members. However, in answer to the community’s ongoing dilemma, Father Pules Halim responds to the current issue with political correctness, “there is no other below the Pope personally to head funeral prayers” -- deflecting the issue altogether. 
 
A cogent argument by the Coptic community remains for the dissolution of the 1980 Holy Synod Resolution. The personal wish of the beloved bishop of Jerusalem to “rest in peace” in Israel defies that church law. As such it now becomes part of the bishop’s legacy for the Orthodox Church’s connection to Israel and its holy sites and many say must lead to the termination of a political document favoring past regimes. Away with the disproportionate penalties of ecclesiastical sanctions for disobeying; such as the loss of communion rights and marriage rights in the church.  
 
The basis for the 1980 Holy Synod Resolution
The religious grounds for the Coptic Orthodox 1980 Holy Synod Resolution is spurious. It states that ecclesiastical sanctions shall not be overturned “until such time as the [Coptic Orthodox] Church repossesses the Sultan Monastery of Jerusalem [now in the possession of the Ethiopian Orthodox Monks]; such resolution is in effect and will be renewed automatically as long as the Monastery has not been re-established, or has not issued a decision about the compound otherwise.”
 
On the face of it, the resolution is a religious matter. But a deeper look shows that the monastery in question is held in possession by Ethiopian Orthodox monks who, in fact, answer to the Coptic Orthodox pope as fellow worshipers within the same church hierarchy. The monastery is Tawadros II’s jurisdiction over which he holds the ultimate decision power. Upon his order at any time he can reverse the occupation or decide to drop the possession issue as irrelevant.  
 
Furthermore, Pope Shenuda III did not wait for the Sultan Monastery to change hands to install Bishop Abraham in 1992 to oversee the Jerusalem Diocese. He rightly ignored it in order to preserve the church sanctuary and Orthodox community in Jerusalem. Meanwhile, securing the Orthodox Jerusalem site had no bearing on the ban in place for visits to Jerusalem holy sites by Orthodox parishioners from Egypt.  
 
1980 Holy Synod Resolution is linked to Islam
Religion is politics in Egypt. In the end, it boils down to a purely political game. The late Pope Shenuda III said some years back that he would “visit Jerusalem only when he and the Al Azhar imam can go hand in hand.” Supporting his statementa few weeks ago in a meeting with PLO President Abbas in the Coptic Cathedral in Cairo,Tawadros II mimicked Shenuda III’s sentiments when he said, “I hope to visit Jerusalem together with Al Azhar Imam.”  Meanwhile, the Coptic community sacrifices pilgrimages to the Holy Land to wait for an Al Azhar Imam.
 
Pope Shenuda III’s quote and its reiteration by the next pope is nothing more than code for the liberation of East Jerusalem and return of it to Arab-Muslim control. The anti-Israel stance is nothing new. Coptic religious heads were lopped off from the body of the community as early as Egypt’s first regime -- in 1952 when Nasser overturned the king. This was the silent coup inside the church.  Nasser, Sadat and Mubarak were able to control and oppress the political will of the Coptic Christian population through their church leaders.  
 
Pope Tawadros II was installed at a time when Islamic terrorists known as the Muslim Brotherhood were in control of Egypt and, admittedly, under severe pressure to conform to the Islamic state. This was no time to break with traditions of former popes who compromised with Egypt’s regimes against the best interests of their people.  Even so, Tawadros II is accepted and loved by his flock without reservation. The pope is recognized and followed as a profound spiritual leader and respected for his public declaration of non-involvement in Egyptian politics. 
 
Monkhood days together – bishop was teacher of the pope 
Pope Tawadros II and his Egyptian delegation to Israel celebrated the funeral mass of his dear friend and colleague, Bishop Abraham of Jerusalem, on November 29, 2015. Monkhood together with Abraham when the bishop was the teacher of the pope added a very personal dimension for Tawadros II in the bestowal of honor and prayers upon the bishop in his final resting place. Hopefully, with this comes an examination by church leaders of the motives behind the Coptic Orthodox 1980 Holy Synod Resolution -- sidestepped here once again by clergy to answer the call of duty -- to lead to the elimination of this stranglehold upon the entire Coptic Orthodox family.   

Khamenei: US Created 'Myth' of Nuclear Weapons to Demonize Iran

Category: News
Created on Friday, 24 April 2015 08:22
Ayatollah KhameneiThe United States created the "myth" of Iranian nuclear weapons in a wily maneuver to turn the country into a "threat," Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei alleged on Sunday.
 
Speaking to several hundred military commanders during a televised address, Khamenei once again displayed his deep mistrust of the US - just as nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 world powers are set to resume. 
 
"They created the myth of nuclear weapons so they could say the Islamic Republic is a source of threat. No, the source of threat is America itself, with its unrestrained, destabilizing interventions," Khamenei charged. 
 
Khamenei also attacked Israel, accusing the "Zionist regime, that is chained like a dog to the American regime," of being the real source of instability in the region. 
"The other side is methodically and shamelessly threatening us militarily ... even if they did not make these overt threats, we would have to be prepared," he added.
 
A framwork agreement on Iran's nuclear program was reached between the Islamic Republic and world powers earlier this month. Negotiations to achieve a final accord by the June 30 deadline are expected to resume in Vienna this week. 
 
While that temporary agreement has been reached, divisions remain. One major issue is how quickly international sanctions will be lifted once a final accord is determined. 
 
Earlier this month, Iran insisted that all sanctions be lifted immediately for any agreement to go into effect. The US State Department was quick to dismiss this demand. 
 
Israel, meanwhile, has been consistently critical of the diplomatic deal with Iran, berating the West once again on Sunday for ignoring Iran's aggression in the Middle East. 
 
Speaking before the start of his weekly Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu accused Iran of "ramping up its aggressiveness in the region and all around Israel's borders."
 
"Israel also sees with great severity the fact that there is no mention of this aggressiveness in the nuclear deal being formed between the powers and Iran," he added.
 
"There is no conditioning of the deal upon an end to this aggressiveness, either at the start of the deal or as a condition forremoving sanctions.”

Why US State Declassified the Report on Israel’s Nuclear Capabilities

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 11 April 2015 07:41
Israel-has-Nuclear-WeaponsIsrael’s foremost enemy is the US State Department. The presidents and politicians, are just the summer help to State.
 
Normally when somebody wants something from somebody else, they show their best behavior toward the person they want it from. Even a child knows this and will do what its parents want in order to get that ice cream cone or trip to Disneyland.
 
Why is it we never see this normal human reaction from the Palestinians with regards to USAID and the President of the United States in order to get their “Palestinian state”? Machmoud Abbas continually praises terrorists who murder Jews, declaring memorials and naming streets after them.
 
Abbas makes daily threats to the long term existence of Israel.  Even if they get that Palestinian state, they will take all of Israel later, he says, in mimicking the late Abu Amar. Palestinian TV, funded by USAID, runs children’s shows calling for the extermination of Jews and it is a known fact that kids are being groomed to be future terrorists. Murderers in Israeli jails are being paid salaries with money provided by the US taxpayer. That story broke, the aid never stopped and it won’t. Israeli leadership is equally guilty of looking the other way. Now that the election is over, Bibi is running to give the withheld tax money to the PA.
 
The simple truth is that the Palestinians have been promised behind closed doors by the United States that they will have their Palestinian state no matter what. Common logic should tell us this from the behavior of the Palestinians. They know something the average Israeli does not know; it doesn’t matter how obnoxious or murderous they are, the US is going to get them that state. The Arabs know this and so does the US State Department. It didn’t just start under Obama but goes back to Bush 41 and before that.
 
Believe it or not, a member of Palestinian “royalty” lives on my street in America. We once had a conversation about the “peace process.” He told me the US promised the Palestinians a state no matter what they do, nor how long it takes. When Arafat was the only survivor of a plane crash in the Libyan desert, Ronald  Reagan dispatched a helicopter from a US aircraft carrier to save him.  Arafat could have been wiped out in Lebanon too in 1982 and in the Mukata  in 2002, but US intervention saved him and his terror movement.
 
Jewish Republicans in the US talk as if the Republican Party is the savior of Israel. And Democrats are more than willing to absorb accusations of anti-Israel bias from the other side of the aisle. But the fact is both parties are not such great friends to Israel. Israel’s foremost enemy is the US State Department. The presidents and politicians, are just the summer help to State. Obama and Kerry have just been more outspoken about carrying out State’s mandate than previous administrations that gave lip service to Israel, but also quietly stabbed her in the back.
 
Israeli politicians too, both the Left and Right, also play this game of ostrich with its head in the sand.  The open defiance of Abbas, of Hamas and the continuing daily knifings, stonings, and burnings of the common Israeli by terrorists are regarded as petty crimes and not worth disturbing the natural order of things.
 
Here is what is going on: The Arabs and to a greater extent the Muslims, have a vision for the world of Islamic supremacy. Serbia and Bosnia both fell to Muslim forces who attacked those Christian countries with mercenaries and jihadists while staging diplomatic manoeuvers that ultimately turned them into Muslim states. The Serbs were winning their war until NATO and US planes joined in and bombed them. The same was true in Bosnia which today has as its main exports drugs and prostitution—but it’s Muslim and that’s all that matters.
 
The leaders of Israel fear the same fate that befell those two Christian states will ultimately happen to Israel. Abbas’s call to join the kangaroo court at the ICC is just a part of this grand scheme. Samantha Powers has openly called for using foreign troops to “protect” the Palestinians from the Israelis.  Common sense should tell anyone after the Disengagement that a Palestinian state next door in Yesha is a non-starter. Yet the US State Department, Obama, and even Netanyahu (after a brief moment of clarity) are still talking of this.
 
Israel has become dependent on the US for trade, loans and military security. However, Israeli leaders know also the US State Department’s real plans:  Israel has to worry that one day the Arabs may get the EU and US to decide to send NATO forces to give them that state they were promised no matter how they behave.
 
Which brings us to the US declassification of Israel’s nuclear capabilities by State  while retaining security classification for similar capabilities for other allies like the UK and France. If the US decided to join NATO in forcing Israel to vacate Yesha and create a “Palestinian state”, Israel could sustain a war for two years at most, but most likely would be overrun—except for Israel’s own nuclear umbrella. In the event of such an attack, Israel could only hope at best for a Pyrrhic victory, but nonetheless, the deterrence against a repeat of Serbia and Bosnia is immeasurably stronger with those nukes.
 
John Kerry’s negotiations in Switzerland are an attempt by US State to stop an Iranian bomb, yes, but also to set up the Middle East as a nuclear free zone and prevent an arms race. No doubt Iranian negotiators have demanded of Kerry why they should not have a bomb when Israel has one. Common sense should tell us that Israel doesn’t threaten to use theirs on anyone, or to attack other countries unless they pose an existential threat to Israel. But State doesn’t think that deeply, nor does this current US President, Obama. I predict the US will soon put Israel’s nukes on the negotiating table as negotiations are extended.
 
The release of classified info on Israel’s nukes will become part of the US negotiations with Iran. If the US can get Israel to disarm its nukes in the name of “peace” in the region, then maybe they can get the Iranians to do the same. US State sees its new Middle East as having Sunni states aligned against Shiite Iran in a new map of the Middle East. And as usual, Israel is plop dead center of that map. If Israel no longer has nukes, then the US and EU can also do some map shifting as was done to Serbia and Bosnia, any threat to NATO forces from Israeli nukes would be mitigated so Israel could become, well, Palestine.
 
All the anti-Semitism and boycott nonsense we are seeing at American campuses was orchestrated by the US State Department. That goal is to groom future generations in America to oppose a Jewish state. The State Department quietly funds many such seminars at campuses that try to persuade the uninitiated that ending a Jewish state will mean “peace.” Even some of the Jews in America are falling for the ruse.
 
The infrastructure of Israel would still exist, but she would no longer be a Jewish state, but one dominated  by Arabs and the Muslim ummah. The resulting pogroms against Jews and Christians are an after effect that would be tolerated for the long term “good.” We’ve seen a reluctance to save Christians, Kurds and Yazidis besieged by ISIS here in the US,  so this will probably be the same scenario.
 
It’s time Israel begin an austerity program to distance herself from the US State Department. Israel needs to develop its own aircraft and arms export industry and  not take orders from Washington. Right now, Kerry is talking about giving the Iranians a ten year threshold to develop nuclear weapons later on.
 
Israel needs to tout its nuclear capabilities right now, its technological exports and most of all to stop playing ostrich whenever the Palestinians make existential threats.  It’s a myth that America has always been Israel’s number one ally. In 1948 the US put an embargo on weapons, in 1956 the US made Israel withdraw from Sinai for nothing in return, in 1973 the US was content to make Israel bleed until Golda Meir threatened to use those same nuclear weapons.
 
Like a spoiled child being told it’s time to leave home, Israel needs to wean itself from the US for its own security and safety. It could start by stopping USAID to Palestinian TV and other Palestinian  “charities” until it passes rigorous inspection by Israel. Politicians will only dither until it’s too late.
 
Lee KaplanLee Kaplan
The writer heads Stop the ISM. He is an investigative journalist and contributor to Front Page Magazine, senior intelligence analyst and communications director for the Northeast Intelligence Network, and also heads Defending America for Knowledge and Action (DAFKA). He appears frequently in the US media.

'PA Cancels ICC Moves against Israel in Exchange for Tax Funds'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 31 March 2015 12:35
Tax FundsThe Palestinian Authority (PA) will formally join the International Criminal Court (ICC) on April 1, but the Jerusalem Post reports that following Israel’s decision on Friday to release its frozen tax revenues – the PA is not expected at this time to take steps against the Jewish State in the ICC regarding settlement construction.
 
The report adds that while the ICC prosecutor has – at the PA's request – opened a preliminary inquiry into alleged Israeli war crimes carried out during Operation Protective Edge, the PA is not expected at this time to take additional legal steps in the ICC regarding last summer's Gaza war.
 
Also as a result of Israel's decision to free up the tax funds, the PA does not intend to stop its security cooperation with Israel, the Post learned.
 
The PA's United Nations representative, Riyadh Mansour, said Sunday that the PA is determined to prosecute Israel in the ICC, no matter what. Speaking on NBC's Meet the Press, Mansour said that at this point, there was nothing that would stop the PA from trying to prosecute Israel in the ICC.
 
The only way to prevent this, he said, was an immediate end to Israeli settlement activities in Judea and Samaria. “The first step should be to adopt resolution on the parameters to defend a two-state solution and then after that we should have another resolution from Israel to stop this illegal activity of settlement activities, because we cannot have a two-state solution when we have 600,000 settlers," he said.
 
The gambit to join the ICC might be the PA's Achilles' heel, estimated Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, Director of Shurat HaDin – Israel Law Center.
 
"The ICC is a special situation because the US itself doesn't believe in the court and doesn't want the court to determine Palestinian statehood," she said. "They don't want to strengthen the court.".

The Real Israel Stands with Netanyahu

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Monday, 23 March 2015 08:48
Man of steelOne of the icons of Israeli leftist culture, Joshua Sobol, during the campaign against Benjamin Netanyahu, defined religious Jews as stupid “mezuzah kissers”. This anti-religious perfidy contains the secret of the defeat of the Zionist Camp and the impressive victory of Netanyahu’s Likud.
 
Israel’s élite was crushed by the “second Israel”, the title by which the people who crowned Bibi again are known. Netanyahu won despite the establishment: newspapers, televisions, former ambassadors, former heads of the Mossad, former retired generals, all the writers and artists.  
 
You see it from the electoral map. The Likud won in the capital, Jerusalem, and in the north and south of the country. The left dominated Tel Aviv and other cities in the center, the bastions of cosmopolitan, sophisticated, hedonistic, urban and literary Israel. Netanyahu dominated in the remote cities threatened by missiles from Hamas and Hezbollah, such as Kiryat Shmona and Nahariya in the north, and Sderot, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Beersheba in the south.
 
Even Arad, the southern desert city where the writer Amos Oz made his home, awarded vote to the Likud en masse. Ashdod, the third poorest city in Israel and one of the fastest demographically growing, continued to be a bastion of the right.
 
This is the paradox:  the so called Labour Party is voted for by the rich sectors of Israel, while the Likud governs with the consent of the majority of the country living in the smaller towns, in what IIsraelis call the"peripheries" - far north and south - and in the “settlements”. Jerusalem is a poor city, where several shekels are a significant figure.
 
If Tel Aviv lives a life of power and acquisition, Jerusalem vibrates with Jewish identity. Many Likud voters are Sephardic, from Asian or African countries; enemies of Labor before they are fans of Likud. Many are devotees of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who spared no fierce attacks on feminists, the Supreme Court, and the left (“it does not take into account the human being, but only power”).
 
Netanyahu was not voted in by Kfar Shamaryahu, the richest town in Israel, where many millionaires and journalists live, such as Haaretz’s Ari Shavit. and the list of the richest Israelis, from Idan Ofer to Stef Wertheimer: they all vote for Herzog and Livni. Weren’t these the same billionaires who supported the Oslo Process in order to invest in the Arab territories?  
 
The arch-enemy of Benjamin Netanyahu, Noni Mozes was also defeated in these elections. He is the mysterious publisher of the newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth with vast properties in television. They are the scions of the Ashkenazi élite, the children and grandchildren of those Jews who came from north-eastern Europe, who built Israel with their messianic intelligence. Even today in Israel the taste of cosmopolitan culture, the great love for the theater and, above all, for music, are seen as typically Ashkenazi.
 
The others, the Sephardim and the Mizrahis, were segregated and pushed to the margins of the society, but today, in the army units and as a demographically, they constitute the core of Israel. 
 
Like the Yemenite Jews, who, originally, with their large eyes, pointy beards and curly locks, looked like antique Assyrian medallions.
 
Many have come into their own in academia and the professions, but most Sephardic Jews still remain connected to tradition.
 
The doctor, the architect, the engineer with French, American or British passports – the same people who protested against Bibi’s economic policies – are able to leave Israel and reintegrate into the Western society.
 
But can a religious Sephardic Jew - or any Sephardic Jew, for that matter - go back to Syria, Iraq, Lebanon or Egypt? It is like after the Yom Kippur war, when part of the Left proposed the abandonment of Israel and the Sephardim said and repeat today: “We are staying”.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter and of "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary.

Israel Has Spoken

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 22 March 2015 10:05
Cochin Cemetery INN- Paula SternI woke this morning in far off India to the news that Israel had done what I wanted it to do, what India did when the President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, tried to interfere in their elections.
 
Bennett's power is far greater than the 8 seats he now commands because he has something more.
As we watch the dust settle over the election results, several things are readily apparent. A much stronger Netanyahu has emerged. The question of how he will form a coalition is as yet unanswered. It will take a few days but it will happen. But even now, as they are counting the final votes, there are two very clear messages that have come out of this election.
 
The first is a message to Barack Hussein Obama - don't mess with us; don't mess with our democracy. By far, the loudest sound heard from Israel this morning is the sound of Israel spitting in Obama's face and if that seems too crude, too graphic a message, I'll remind you that this is what Obama has been doing to Israel for weeks as he mobilized dozens of campaign workers to fight Netanyahu for the will of the Israeli people.
 
We answered. Good Lord, did we answer and for that alone, I am very proud this morning. I'm making my final visits, saying my final goodbyes to new friends in India and I'm heading home. I have so many impressions of India that I will take with me. But yesterday, as Israel voted, I visited the last "remaining" Cochin synagogue and was driven to tears...something that even Poland's synagogues didn't cause. 
 
Just before going to the synagogue, we managed to force our way into the Cochin cemetery. We had to call the rabbi of the Bangalore Chabad for help and even then it took a while but eventually, we got in and walked past the graves of centuries of India's Jews. Like the synagogue, it was like watching them die. There are six left, only six. Old, refusing to leave and so left behind...
 
The cemetery is locked to visitors; the synagogue turned into a museum more than anything else. Indian tour guides take groups in and tell them what they want, the little they know, of Judaism and Jewish practice. I hear them say words like "Shabbat" and "Torah" and finally, in tears, I walked over to a British couple and began to speak, "that is the Ten Commandments in Hebrew, the first words of each; and on the left is the Shema prayer - we say that every morning and every night and it is the last prayer we say before we die."
 
"This is where on Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath, we take out the Torah, the five books of Moses, and read from it aloud. Here on the benches, the men would crowd around. See how the wood bench curves around - men would stand there and read along from all angles. Up there, where no one is allowed, that is where the women would sit."
 
"Don't cry," said the nice British woman, "they are preserving it."
 
I longed for home; for a land where we do not need non-Jews to preserve us. I prayed not for a political party but for all Israelis to vote. I was ready, I am ready, to accept the will of the people. 
 
And that is what spoke yesterday.
 
The results were resounding for a simple reason - the second message. Likud is where it is because many voters sacrificed their true voting choice to enable Benjamin Netanyahu to remain in power. The message to Obama is stunning and clear; whether Netanyahu understands the message to him is another matter.
 
Bennett's power is far greater than the 8 seats he now commands because he has something more. He has seats within the Likud and those seats, or at least the voters who represent them, will be ready at any moment to pull out if Bibi refuses to now deliver on what he promised to get re-elected.
 
Netanyahu will spend time now evaluating the very clear message sent to him, but Obama need not take any time. Israel has spoken, roared its message brilliantly.
 
From the beautiful city of Jerusalem, at the heart and center of Israel, our eternal and united capital, from the streets of Tel Aviv, from the north and from the south, from ancient cities that date back to Biblical times and have been renewed - no Obama, we will not let you choose who will lead us. We will forever be the best friend America will ever have in the Middle East. We will share a common goal - a commitment to freedom, democracy. We will share such important values as loving life, fighting to preserve all that we are. We, little Israel, will continue to reach out to help others in times of crisis, but we will not let you do what you tried so desperately to do.
 
Israel has spoken. We will choose our destiny and we will, as Bibi told the US Congress, defend ourselves - for the first time in 100 generations, we will not rely on others to defend the Jews.
 
Israel has spoken.
 
Paula R. SternPaula R. Stern
Paula R. Stern is the Founder and Documentation Manager of WritePoint, a technical writing company.

An Open Letter to Speaker of the House John Boehner

Category: Press Releases
Created on Tuesday, 10 March 2015 20:55

Al Sisi for presidentjohn boehner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please allow me to congratulate you on your tremendous success in having Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu address Congress. The world needs to hear the truth from our friend, Israel. For decades Israel has suffered terrorist aggression from neighboring states.  
 
Allowing Iran to have nuclear weapons would not only be a danger to the State of Israel but a threat to the entire world. At your invitation, Americans heard the Israeli Prime Minister unfold the truth to the American Congress.
 
The positive and urgent message of Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech will resonate for some time to come and hopefully lead to the desired goal.
 
Likewise, another important leader in the Middle East may prove to be enlightening on the issue of fighting Islamic terrorism. I refer to the president of Egypt, Abd El Fatah El Sisi. If Egypt's current president were invited to address Congress, America could know firsthand the works of Al Sisi's government in eradicating terrorism. 
 
Your invitation to the Israeli leader has shown America’s support of Israel in light of much opposition. Having President El Sisi address the Congress would offer Americans the same opportunity to show support for Egypt’s initiatives -- tempering Islamic clerics, approaching Coptic Christians, and fighting extremist organizations linked to terror.  
 
Mr. Speaker, you have already been instrumental in illustrating America's support of real leadership against terrorism in the Middle East. Extending a hand now to President El Sisi would only emphasize America's resolve to stand with rational and courageous leaders and support the outcomes of reduced terrorism in the Middle East and around the world.
  
For this reason, I kindly request, on behalf of my organization, Voice of the Copts, that you extend an invitation to President El Sisi of Egypt to address a joint session of the American Congress in the very near future.  
Thank you. 
 
Sincerely,
 
Ashraf Ramelah
 
Founder and president
 
Voice of the Copts

 

 

 

 

 

It’s the 6,000 Centrifuges, Stupid

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 07 March 2015 14:22
A uranium enrichment facility in Natanz Iran. File Photo- AFPIn July of the 1973 Season, Yogi Berra’s Mets trailed the Chicago Cubs by 9 ½ games in the National League East.  That’s when Berra coined his famous phrase “It ain’t over, till it’s over.”  Berra’s Mets when on to rally, and win the division title for a pennant ride which ended with the Mets losing in the 1973 World Series. 
 
If Israel waits “till it’s over” to criticize Obama’s tacit nuclear-weaponization of Iran, it will be over for Israel.  The final countdown to Iran’s annihilation of Israel will have begun.
 
John Kerry and Barack Obama aren’t as honest or as funny as Yogi Berra.  But, they are trying to use a variant of Yogi’s famous tautology to deceive people into accepting a fait accompli Iranian nuclear deal when it will be impossible to improve any of the terms.  At a recent Senate hearing, Kerry bloviated:
 
Kerry: "I can't state this more firmly, the policy is Iran will not get a nuclear weapon. Anyone running around right now, jumping to say we don't like the deal, or this or that, doesn't know what the deal is. There is no deal yet.
 
"I caution people to wait and see what these negotiations produce.
 
"Since 2013 we have been testing whether or not we can achieve that goal diplomatically. I don't know yet. But it's the most effective way to solve the problem and we will prove that over the course of these next weeks and months.”
 
So, Kerry’s and Obama’s newest Big Lie is a retread of Yogi’s “Ain’t over” saying: “How can you criticize the deal, when the deal isn’t final yet?”  The answer is easy, stupid: It’s the range of the base number of centrifuges that the United States has already offered Iran it would agreed to let it keep.
 
It’s clear Obama has already agreed to Iran to keep, at least, over 6,000 centrifuges.  Israel has maintained Iran cannot  be trusted with even 100.
 
On to a concrete example.  Let’s say your husband is negotiating to sell your house.  You know the value of the house is over one million dollars: $1,000,000.  But, you overhear your husband secretly negotiating with the buyer where the buyer is offering $100,000 and your husband is asking only $125,000, or at least $875,000 less than you know what it’s worth.  Do you wait until your husband has signed the contract to start yelling at him?  You scream at him immediately, he is cheating his family out of $875,000 dollars.
 
If your husband is as much of a liar as Obama is and slyly responds to you saying, “Well, we haven’t signed the final contract yet for the $100,000 the buyer is offering, so you don’t know what the final price is!”  File for divorce.  The issue isn’t whether the final number between 100k and 125k has been finally agreed to.  It’s the very range of the numbers to begin with that is the problem.  If the buyer accepts your husband’s current asking price of $125,000, you will have lost $875,000.
 
With Iran, we are not talking about money.  We are talking empowering Iran to be able to nuke Israel, and wipe 6 million Jews off the map.  So, it’s a bit more serious.
 
And from the very numbers of centrifuges that are now being negotiated between Obama and Iran, the “best” number of centrifuges Obama is now offering Iran to keep spinning and enriching is so catastrophic that one doesn’t need to wait until the “deal is done” to know it’s a horrible deal.  Obama is offering Iran to keep around 6,000 centrifuges and that is 6,000 centrifuges more than Iran should have.  
 
You don’t have to be a nuclear scientist in order to understand something is very wrong with Obama’s Iran-nuclear deal.  Obama and Kerry’s hysterical attacks against anyone criticizing the Iran deal’s general outlines is so false that it’s clear Obama has already anointed Iran as a nuclear-weapons’ state.
 
PM Netanyahu is a modern day hero to fight for Israel and the Jewish people.  Anyone claiming, “It’s personal between, Bibi and Obama” is either delusional or lying.  It’s not personal, although they don't like one another.  But Obama is knowingly enabling Iran to wipe out Israel.  That’s not personal.
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who specializes in security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com.

Kerry Warns Netanyahu: Don't Reveal Iran Deal Details

Category: News
Created on Monday, 02 March 2015 08:29
Kerry Warns NetanyahuUS Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday warned Israel's prime minister against revealing details at his upcoming speech to the US Congress of an Iran nuclear deal that world powers are currently negotiating.
 
While he did not mention Binyamin Netanyahu by name, Kerry told reporters in Geneva he was "concerned by reports" that "selective details" of the deal would be revealed, after an Israeli official said the Jewish state knew about the emerging agreement and that the prime minister would elaborate in his congressional address.
 
However, Kerry staunchly defended Israel at the annual session of the United Nations Human Rights Cancel, despite the ongoing tensions between the US and Israel.
 
"The HCR's obsession with Israel risks undermining the credibility of the entire organization," Kerry said Monday at the opening of the main annual session of the council. 
 
"We will oppose any group within the UN system (attempting) to regularly and arbitrarily de-legitimize Israel," he said.
 
Calling the council's record on Israel "deeply concerning," he said "no country on earth should be free from scrutiny, but neither should any country be (subjected) to bias".
 
His defense comes at a time when relations between the US and Israel have been noticeably chilly. One reason for this is Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's attempts to dissuade the Obama administration from a making a deal with Iran on its nuclear program. 
 
Netanyahu is currently in the United States and will address the US Congress on Tuesday at the invitation of House Speaker, Republican John Boehner. 
 
Kerry, meanwhile, is due to hold talks later Monday with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif in the Swiss lakeside town of Montreux.
 
After years of on-off negotiations, experts say global powers appear to be closing in on a deal that would prevent Tehran from developing a nuclear bomb.
 
But Israel believes that Iran and world powers will clinch a troublesome deal that eases sanctions on Tehran without applying sufficiently stringent safeguards.
 
"We're looking at a very bad deal indeed. A disastrous deal that we have to do everything in our power to prevent," Economics Minister Bennett told Arutz Sheva after addressing the AIPAC Policy Conference in Washington Monday.
 
Under the deal currently on the table between Iran and the so-called P5+1 powers, "Iran will legally be able to acquire a nuclear weapon," Bennett warned. "It gets a definitive path to the weapon."

Tunisia Joins Israel as Only 'Free' Countries in Middle East

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 01 February 2015 23:45
Flag-Pins-Israel-Tunisia2014 saw a distinct decline in global freedom, according to an annual report from the watchdog organization Freedom House released Sunday - with the Middle East the worst region for freedom worldwide. 
 
The annual Freedom Report ranks 195 countries by political rights and civil liberties, with scores assigned to each country via a complicated scoring system over the country's legal, judicial, and executive systems as well as current events. 
 
In 2014, 89 were rated "free" (46% overall), 55 (28%) are "partly free," and 51 (26%) are "not free" - a sharp decline since 2013 which Freedom House noted is due not only to ISIS in Iraq and Syria, but Recep Tayyip Erdogan's restrictions on internet freedom in Turkey and the extended Russia-Ukraine conflict. China has also centralized its government monitoring, it noted. 
 
The report cites a number of factors for the overall decline, including a global shift toward authoritarian methods, a decline in internet freedom, and the cumulative effect of terrorism over years of conflict in the Middle East and elsewhere. 
 
The only two countries listed as "free" in the Middle East were Israel, which was joined for the first time by Tunisia. Syria, by contrast, had the lowest Freedom Index rating for any country in over ten years. 
 
The "worst of the worst" for free and democratic countries included the Central African Republic (CAR), Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
 
Several countries moved backwards on its indexing scale, it added, naming Russia, Venezuela, Egypt, Turkey, Thailand, Nigeria, Kenya, and Azerbaijan. 

ISIS Hints it Wants to Depose Hamas and PA

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 25 January 2015 08:17
ISIS Islamists in Iraq fileThe Islamic State (ISIS) branch in "Bayt al-Maqdis," an Arabization of the Hebrew Holy Temple and a term for Jerusalem, has started distributing publications explaining ISIS's platform, in a campaign to expand its influence in Gaza, Judea and Samaria.
 
On the opening page of the publication by ISIS in "Palestine" is written "this is our position, this is our worldview, these are our founding principles. ...The liar will not be left with an excuse, and the supporters will not be left with doubt."
 
A large ISIS symbol is drawn on the center of the page, including the oath of allegiance to Islam that reads "there is no God but Allah." Along with it appears a ring of Mohammed, the founder of Islam, with three words on it: Allah, Prophet, Mohammed.
 
Jihad holy war in the path of Allah is a commandment for all to "liberate the Muslim lands," states the publication, emphasizing that there's an obligation to fight the police and army of "the rule of tyranny and heresy."
 
From the statement, it can be inferred that ISIS is calling for its followers to attack the Palestinian Authority (PA) in Judea and Samaria, and Hamas in Gaza, framing such a coup as a religious command.
 
The publication stresses that Jews and Christians will no longer enjoy "defense" among the Muslims as it claims was practiced in the past, calling for the non-Muslims to reach a new agreement with the Islamic State that aims for global domination.
 
Addressing the PA, the local ISIS branch added that any agreement reached with the "occupier" does not obligate Muslims, and is completely worthless.
 
The threats on the PA and Hamas come as Israeli security sources estimate hundreds of Hamas terrorists have been steadily switching over to ISIS, viewing Hamas as "too moderate" in comparison.
 
An ISIS terror cell was recently busted in Hevron too, in an area controlled by the PA.
 
ISIS already reportedly has a foothold in Gaza where it took an active part in last summer's terror war against Israel, and where it claimed a bombing attack on the French Cultural Center last October.

"Don't You Miss America?"

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Wednesday, 07 January 2015 07:55
americaOne of the things I love doing is showing Israel to visitors. It isn't just about missing work or stealing a day but about seeing, through their eyes, the wonder that I still see here, even after more than two decades.
 
I'm used to questions like - aren't you afraid? Do you think there will ever be peace? Don't you think, if you gave them [fill in the blank], that it would be better for Israel and them? And my favorite, but do you really think this is the best place to raise your children?
 
I've been asked these questions before, have answers for each. Recently, someone asked me "don't you miss America?" and that got me thinking about the questions I expect, and the ones I don't.
 
Aren't you afraid? No, really no. Not for a minute do I fear the present or the future. Sure, I was a basket case, terrified to the core, when Elie was in first Cast Lead and then Operation Pillar of Defense. Sometimes, I'm nervous about going on the train or driving a particular road - this past month, as we drove down to Eilat, I was worried that there would be a rocket attack. But there are worries and concerns, and then there is fear. I have the world's greatest imagination when it comes to thinking of all the bad things that can happen.
 
I am a firm believer that if I think of something bad, God won't let it happen because He's not going to have me go around and say, "I knew it!" So, He'll think of something else and my job is to try the impossible, to out-think God. The tsunami, a meter of snow in Jerusalem, 9/11 - I never thought of those...but mundane things like car accidents, rocket attacks, throwing rocks at the train, kids forgetting to bring sweaters and freezing to death in July - I've got those covered.
 
I lived in America for the first 30 plus years of my life and I was often afraid - afraid of the night, of being attacked as a woman. I was afraid someone would take my children...terrified silly of anyone who looked at them too long. A man once saw Amira bundled in my arms and asked me if I wanted to sell her and I almost panicked. I grabbed her more tightly to me, said no, and rushed away. He must have thought I was insane. Those same words have been said to me half a dozen times, at least, in Israel and each time I smiled and said, "sure, how much?" When I left America, I left behind the fear of the night. I can walk here safely at 2:00 in the morning; I can go shopping or begin my day at 4:00 in the morning in complete darkness and have no fear. No, I am not afraid to live in this amazing country, to travel its roads, speak to total strangers on the street.
 
Do you think there will ever be peace? No. I'm almost tempted to just leave that one word as the answer to that question and move to the next. I want peace, I dream of peace, I yearn for peace more than you can imagine. I said I wasn't afraid - but I am afraid of when David goes into the army, when Elie and Shmulik next do reserve duty. We are engaged in a battle of cultures, even of religion. Islam may be called (or call itself) the religion of peace but in reality, it is a religion that does not allow compromise, negotiation. To them, that is equivalent to weakness, to surrender. They will not compromise; they will not say, okay, you take this and we'll take that. What they will say is, okay, we'll take this now. We'll give you a hudna (a temporary peace ceasefire) and take what you are willing to give...and then, they'll return and want more. They were offered 97% of what they are supposedly asking for...and they turned it down. They turned down way more in 1947. They do not want peace and while you can buy all sorts of things in this world, the one thing you can't buy is true peace (well, you can't buy true love either). So, no, I don't believe there will ever be peace. At best, convinced we are too strong to be challenged, there will be quiet - as we have with Egypt and Jordan, to some extent with Lebanon and Syria as well. I hope for true quiet with the Palestinians. Realistically, I can't imagine getting anything above that level.
 
Don't you think, if you gave them [fill in the blank], that it would be better for Israel and them? Been there, done that. Didn't work then, won't work now. We agreed to them having half the land in 1947; they attacked us with five armies. We agreed to return much of the Sinai we captured in 1956...that just got us to 1967 when we had to capture it again. We gave them Gaza in 2005, that just got us several more wars. Yes, the "peace" with Egypt has held after we gave them back the Sinai for the second time, but it is a fragile peace which the Egyptians keep debating and at some point, will likely break. We gave the Jordanians some pieces of land in the peace agreement we signed with them, but like Egypt, it is a cold peace held more out of strength than truth. As for the Palestinians, they have shown what they will do with any land given to them - they'll set up rocket launchers and fire thousands of rockets at us; they'll dig tunnels through which they can smuggle arms and/or attack us. No, really. The only peace agreement that will ever stand a chance of surviving is one based on an exchange of peace for peace. Land for peace doesn't work.
 
Do you really think this is the best place to raise your children? That's the easiest question to answer. This is the best place to raise my children; this is the only place to raise my children. My children, the five I have birthed, the three that have married and become mine, the two that I have adopted (and their two sisters which I kind of adopted too) are all proud, strong Jews who love this land. They speak the language of their forefathers; walk proud and tall and strong. They know nothing of cowering before those who hate us; they know nothing of a culture that encourages them to hide who and what they are. They are irrevocably and entirely Israeli and Jewish - and it is very doubtful they could be this way if they did not live here. They value what is meant to be valued in life and walk in a land that is theirs - by right, by might, by history, by divine promise.
 
And so we come to the question I was recently asked, the one that surprised me. Don't you miss America? Like some of the questions above, there is a simple answer and a more complex one. The simplest answer is no. I could leave it at that. But I'll say something else. The United States saved the lives of my grandparents - like so much of their family, they probably would have died in Europe if they and their parents didn't have the foresight to leave Europe. The United States gave them, gave me, a love of democracy and freedom. What it didn't give my extended family is what I have given my children by bringing them here. America is the great melting pot...but in melting, there is a loss. Perhaps for some, the loss is outweighed by the gain. Jews came to America with a history thousands of years old. America in its greatness, made it very easy, too easy. for hundreds of thousands of Jews to walk away from that richness. That loss is more tragic than I can explain and so no, I don't miss America because living there could have cost me the souls of my children, their future.
 
I never walked on American soil and said - this is mine in the same way I say it here. When I practiced my religion, it was on the sidelines, time stolen from school or work that had to be excused or made up. Here, every holiday is a national one; every Shabbat, the Sabbath for all. While the army in the United States did holy work, defending America's interests abroad, it was on distant shores and for causes that were honorable but had little impact.
 
If Vietnam fell (as it did) or not, my life in America was not going to change. If the Iraqis were saved from Saddam Hussein or not, life for Americans was not going to be different. By contrast, each and every war we fight here is a direct defense of our homes. Rockets were fired at my home while Elie was on the border defending Israel. His friends and fellow soldiers knew that the rockets that flew over their heads were aimed at cities where they live, places they have been.
 
I don't miss living in America because in a very real sense, I always felt that I was a stranger living there as a gift, a visitor who needed sanctuary. Only, since 1948, long after my grandparents had moved to America, I didn't need that sanctuary anymore and so I came home.
 
Home to Israel, where I raise my Israeli children to help others, welcome strangers into our home, and as a nation, offer assistance to others. The concept is called "pay forward.' What was done for the Jews who needed a place t
 
Paula R. SternPaula R. Stern
Paula R. Stern is the Founder and Documentation Manager of WritePoint, a technical writing company.

Is Israel Missing an Opportunity?

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 28 December 2014 08:14
abbas-netanyahuIs it Israel that misses an opportunity to gain an opportunity?
 
It is passing strange that Israel is pressed endlessly by friends and foes alike to negotiate a so-called peace agreement with the Palestinian Arabs, even though the self-proclaimed Palestinian Authority consists of two brutal terrorist organizations - Hamas and Fatah.
 
After all, both terror entities are obliged by their charters to wipe Israel off the face of the map and, in the case of Hamas, to exterminate Jews worldwide. Hamas would do it immediately: Fatah would just take a little longer.
 
That being the case, have Israeli leaders rammed home to the likes of Secretary of State John Kerry, what Israel’s so-called “peace partners” have in store for the embattled Jewish state? If so, then how can Kerry continue to demand that Israel negotiate with such genocidal organizations?
 
How can Barack Hussein Obama - who is well aware of the evil contents of their charters - continue to demand the same whilst treating Israel and its Prime Minister in such an insulting and humiliating manner - even betraying the Jewish state in the midst of Hamas aggression by cutting off urgently needed weapons supplies?
 
How can foreign governments continue to embrace the Hamas/Fatah Palestinian Authority when they are, presumably, aware of its unbending determination to exterminate Israel? Is Israel reminding these governments of what is in the Hamas charter and of the apartheid policies of Mahmoud Abbas who will make any territory he is given judenrein (free of Jews)?
 
If they all know this, then how can the Security Council vote for creating a terror state to be called Palestine? Yes, we know about the specter of anti-Semitism but, perhaps, the answer also is that the odious charters are not being produced and exposed relentlessly. If not, why not?  
 
Where is that Public Relations blitz that for so long should have been employed as a weapon alongside the IDF? Whether it is public relations or military power; attack is always the best form of defense.
 
One wonders under what rubric bordering upon insanity are such negotiations with an implacable and genocidal enemy meant to continue, and how has such a lamentable state of affairs come about?
 
We are forced to face the fact that it is always Israel which continues to lose the public relations war with the Arabs and with their supporters who wield increasing influence in the European and American corridors of power. The reason has been clear for a long time but it appears to have been lost on far too many Israeli leaders and politicians.
 
Going back decades, the Israeli Foreign Ministry gave public relations a very low priority. Why? Because the accepted wisdom was that Israel’s cause was so moral, so self-evident, that it hardly needed any PR defense when compared to the demonstrated genocidal Arab aggression and bloodcurdling threats made repeatedly against the embattled Jewish state.
 
That was Israel’s mistake, repeated, alas, again and again. Effective Hasbara has been the neglected step child in Israel’s defense; left instead to brave, principled and patriotic individuals to carry the precious burden.
 
Since the 1967 Six Day War, Palestinian Arab myths, dripping with emotional language, have gradually and inevitably been allowed to seduce vast numbers of the world’s population. The Egyptian born late arch-terrorist, Yasser Arafat, spewed his nonsense of an ancient Palestinian people in world forums, striking a chord among naïve idealists.
 
Again, misplaced arrogance by too many Israelis in leadership positions scorned such notions. Nobody could possibly believe such drivel, they claimed. Well , millions have.
 
Now it beggars the mind how such arrant nonsense vomited daily by the Palestinian Authority’s media machine can ever be excised from the minds of so many throughout the world.
 
The same Yasser Arafat, who wore a keffiyah in the shape of Israel, always hung on his study wall the infamous map showing the Jewish state renamed, ‘Palestine,’ stretching from the River to the Sea. Arafat’s successor, Mahmoud Abbas, now sits in front of that same notorious map and we have seen staged photos of world leaders and politicians standing with the same map behind them shaking the hands of Abbas. A picture speaks a thousand words.
 
The tragic reality is that people can easily be manipulated and influenced through skillful public relations and outright propaganda
 
Surely, the example of Nazi propaganda minister, Yosef Goebbels, and his Big Lie should have taught so many Israeli leaders that simple truth. But no, it hasn’t. Incessant propaganda, using highly skilled PR merchants, paid for with limitless Arab oil wealth, has done its damage over the years to the misfortune of Jewish state.
 
So now we have reached the baleful point where a deeply hostile incumbent in the White House, a man with Islamic sympathies which in themselves are highly suspicious, is threatening Israel with the prospect of the U.S. withholding its veto in the United Nations Security Council against the next predictable and inevitable anti-Israel resolution.
 
Mahmoud Abbas, the Holocaust denying head of the Palestinian Authority, is planning to bring to the UNSC a resolution calling for recognition of a Palestinian terror state - soon after the U.S. mid-term elections.
 
Such a perilous state of affairs would have perhaps been markedly reduced if Israel had relentlessly been providing to international forums and world leaders the most effective answer against negotiating an illegitimate peace treaty with the two wings of PA Terror Central - namely the Hamas Charter and the very words of unbridled hate that drips from the mouth of Mahmoud Abbas; the same Abbas who glorifies Palestinian murderers of Jewish babies.
 
So, for example, let us look at what Hamas has in store for the Jewish state and for Jews everywhere. After reading them, who would still pressure Israel to negotiate when, Hamas, the junior branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, calls for Israel and Jews throughout the world to be destroyed. Negotiate what exactly?  
 
In an article in The Daily Caller blog,  Jamie Weinstein exposes the Hamas Charter. He writes:
 
“Hamas was founded in December 1987. In August 1988, it issued a covenant outlining its mission. The covenant has never been renounced by Hamas, even though some try to claim it is now merely a historical artifact.
 
“Here are nine key takeaways concentrating on Hamas, taken straight from its charter.”
 
1.) Hamas isn’t looking to negotiate a peace deal with Israel. It wants to destroy Israel. Quoting Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna, the charter reads: 
 
“Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.”
 
2.) Actually, Hamas’ charter goes beyond destroying Israel. It longs for Jewish genocide: 
 
“The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said: ‘The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’”
 
3.) Hamas makes it clear in its charter that it doesn’t believe in peace conferences. As its charter states: 
 
“Initiatives, and so-called peaceful solutions and international conferences, are in contradiction to the principles of the Islamic Resistance Movement.”
 
4.) Unsurprisingly for an organization that supports Jewish genocide, Hamas’ charter is explicitly anti-Semitic. For instance, Hamas’ charter claims Jews - not just Israelis - are responsible for all wars: 
 
“There is no war going on anywhere, without having their finger in it.”
 
5.) And all revolutions: 
 
“They were behind the French Revolution, the Communist revolution and most of the revolutions we heard and hear about, here and there. With their money they formed secret societies, such as Freemasons, Rotary Clubs, the Lions and others in different parts of the world for the purpose of sabotaging societies and achieving Zionist interests.”
 
6.) And they also control media: 
 
“For a long time, the enemies have been planning, skillfully and with precision, for the achievement of what they have attained. They took into consideration the causes affecting the current of events. They strived to amass great and substantive material wealth which they devoted to the realization of their dream. With their money, they took control of the world media, news agencies, the press, publishing houses, broadcasting stations, and others.”
 
7.) According to its charter, Hamas favors violent jihad:
 
“There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are all a waste of time and vain endeavors.”
 
8.) Hamas shares the Muslim Brotherhood’s enthusiasm for “death for the sake of Allah:”
 
“Allah is its target, the Prophet is its model, the Koran its constitution: Jihad is its path and death for the sake of Allah is the loftiest of its wishes.”
 
9.) Hamas accuses Israel of being like Nazis in its charter. For instance, there’s this: 
 
“The society that confronts a vicious enemy which acts in a way similar to Nazism, making no differentiation between man and woman, between children and old people - such a society is entitled to this Islamic spirit.”
 
Unfortunately a previous Israeli government allowed Hamas to gain strength in the territories, seeing it as a useful counter to Fatah. This was yet another mistake, which has come back to haunt the Jewish state.
 
It may be too late. The damage may be too severe but, better late than never, I believe it is incumbent upon a more nuanced and hopefully more effective Israeli public relations campaign to be launched quoting again and again the horrific clauses in the genocidal Hamas charter along with the poisonous words spewing from the PA’s media and from Abbas himself.
 
These should be offered relentlessly to all international leaders and media outlets so that all will see the absurdity and utter moral bankruptcy of negotiating with such a genocidal Palestinian partner; one which includes Hamas as part and parcel of the so-called Palestinian Authority whose leader, Mahmoud Abbas, utterly rejects recognizing Israel as the state of the Jews and demands that all ‘Palestinian territory’ be judenrein (free of Jews).
 
Who would still demand that Israel negotiate with such an inhuman entity? Outrageously, the Obama Administration, the EU, the UN, and so many misguided liberal Jews, like the notorious J-Street, still demand that Israel essentially commit national suicide.
 
Why, pray tell me, must we always witness Israeli leaders, year after year, tremulously refraining from forcefully rejecting the fraudulent charge of Israel being in occupation of ‘Palestinian’ land; a monumental lie that oozes from the very depths of Jew hatred, flies in the face of biblical and post-biblical Jewish history, and makes the very angels in heaven weep.
 
And why, oh why, must we have to squirm in embarrassment as an Israeli Prime Minister is forced by the present hostile incumbent in the White House to apologize to the Turkish Islamist thug, Recip Tayip Erdogan.
 
So show the vile Hamas Charter and quote the evil words of Abbas to all who hector and pressure Israel. If they do not come to their senses and recant, they would at least be seen as the immoral enemies of Israel; the Jewish state reconstituted now in its biblical and ancestral homeland.
 
It seems that the famous aphorism by Abba Eban that, “the Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity,” has become a recurring problem for the Jewish state.
 
So stop apologizing when it is the Arabs, those who call themselves Palestinians, who have most to apologize for.
 
Victor Sharpe is a prolific freelance writer and author of several published books including the trilogy, Politicide: The attempted murder of the Jewish state.
 
 
Victor SharpeVictor Sharpe
Victor Sharpe is a prolific freelance writer with many published articles in leading national and international conservative websites and magazines. Born and educated in England, he has been a broadcaster and has authored several books including a collection of short stories under the title The Blue Hour. His three-volume set of in-depth studies on the threats from resurgent Islam to Israel, the West and to Judeo-Christian civilization is titled, Politicide: The Attempted Murder of the Jewish State. www.amazon.com

ISIS Changing the Entire Middle East

Category: Reports
Created on Friday, 26 September 2014 12:50
isis-revisedIslamic State (IS or ISIS) is changing the Middle East, Middle Eastern affairs expert Dr. Eldad Pardo told Arutz Sheva Tuesday - and the Arab world's response to it will ripple into Israeli foreign relations as well. 
 
Pardo first related to the Iranian nuclear question, noting that cooperation with the US on the diplomatic front "is inconvenient to the Iranian regime," which opposes the US's Middle-Eastern policies in the first place.
 
"They say American proposals are not serious and that ISIS was established by the US by aiding the Syrian opposition," Pardo said. 
 
He believes that Tehran is sharpening its positions and aggrandizing its power to clarify to Washington and the West - as well as its regional neighbors - that a nuclear deal will not work unless it is a major player in its final form. 
 
"For the Iranians, ISIS is less of a threat than in the Sunni world," he noted. "This is because ISIS cannot conquer Iran - which is both strong and Shi'ite, so too with Jordan and Saudi Arabia." 
 
ISIS may still prove a threat in the long run, however, through a "war of attrition" the terrorist organization is waging by overwhelming Iran's regional partners, Syria and Lebanon.
 
The ripple effect of ISIS - and its effect on a nuclear deal - may extend so far, he said, to interfere even with Israel's relations with the rest of the Middle East.
 
"If the United States would give up the nuclear issue, it would be dangerous for Israel and the Sunni world," Pardo stated. "Iranians want to build the ancient Iranian Empire. They see themselves as some kind of Aryans facing the primitive Arabs."
 
"On the other hand, there is pressure for change from within Iran," he continued. "What Hezbollah [in Lebanon] has been experiencing in recent years and the rise of Sunni extremists will change public opinion in Iran. Economic sanctions drive [change] as well, and perhaps it will lead them to postpone nuclear development for a few years."
 
"If it happens, Israel will benefit," he added.
 
ISIS-produced chaos within the Arab world, meanwhile, has given Israel the opportunity to make new diplomatic ties in the Middle East over common security needs, according to Pardo. 
 
The expert noted that ISIS's takeovers in Iraq and Syria could see Israel cooperate - if indirectly - with the Kurds and opposition groups inside Syria, to form an unlikely coalition. 
 
Hezbollah, too, may be placated, according to Pardo - as it "understands when to remain quiet along Israel's borders," like it had with Syria during Syrian President Bashar Assad's rule. 
 
Overall, he said, "all the parties in the Middle East are trying to take advantage of the ISIS crisis to their advantage" - including Israel.
 
"When fighting against Hamas, the ISIS crisis helped us [in terms of public opinion]," he explained. "The Iranians, also, are seen as moderates in light of what is happening with ISIS, even if they conduct public executions." 
 
"Assad has killed more people than ISIS through gas and violence, but he is proud to reject ISIS," he noted. "There's very much a struggle for image and for basic moral values here." 

Former slave and Sudanese Freedom Leader Simon Deng

Category: Media
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 16:13
Simon DengSimon Deng speaks at AFDI Rally for Israel and Persecuted Minorities Under Islam 
 
Robert Spencer introduces Simon Deng at AFDI Pro-Israel rally for persecuted minorities under the boot of Islamic jihad and sharia. 
 
The Huffington Post mocked this towering figure.
 
For the first time, defenders of Israel and representatives of minorities persecuted by Islamic jihadists from around the world gathered together to stand for life and for freedom. Finally, the truth.
 
Our speakers provided harrowing insight into the full breadth and depth of the havoc and destruction that Islamic jihadists have unleashed upon the world. New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind gave a stirring appeal for Israel in its struggle against the jihad, and was seconded by the eloquent Ethiopian Jewish spokesman Mordechai Tasman and an IDF soldier who spoke of his own experiences. Dr. Mordechai Kedar flew from Israel for the rally, and showed how the jihadists are proceeding according to quranic imperatives.
 
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What was unprecedented and groundbreaking about our rally was that these strong defenders of Israel were joined by others: Yazidi spokesman Haider Elias, the toweringly courageous and eloquent Sudanese freedom fighter Simon Deng, Palestinian Christian Mazzen Warra, Pastor Matthew Singh of Christians United for Israel, Indian human rights activist Arish Sahani, and Kurdish spokesman Salar Motidi — all of them recognized that we all face the same foe, and all of them ringingly affirmed the necessity for us to stand together for freedom. 
 
Videographer, Pamela Hall.

Union Square Rally for Israel a success but not loud enough to snag media coverage

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 05:58
NFRJournalist Marion Dreyfus over at The American Thinker is struck by the media’s deafening silence on our rally for those slaughtered, persecuted and oppressed in jihadi wars and under Islamic law.
 
CBS was there, but only mentioned that a “a pro-Israel” rally was held in Union Square, while citing the bogus number of dead in Gaza that Hamas provided the media. And the only other media coverage attacked the rally.
 
And we have much more planned. Our rally took place as we were preparing to roll out a new pro-Israel campaign to run next month on 100 NYC bus tails and urban panels at Columbus Circle and 59th Street. We need help with the this – please DONATE here.
 
“Union Square Rally for Israel a success but not loud enough to snag media coverage,” By Marion Dreyfus,  American Thinker,  August 19, 2014
 
The New York Union Square rally for Israel and oppressed minorities under Islam was a rousing success, save for the stunning absence of a single major network or radio or newspaper (all the news apparently did not fit the definition of this huge rally, one surmises, huh, Grey Lady NYT?) I was there for 3+ hrs, and it was a great success; and there was no counter-protest.
 
The one irk was that there was ZERO press, though I know at least 2 people called and sent releases to every station and news medium. Not a single reporter. I saw a few telescopic lens cameras in the hands of handsome men, but they left in moments.
 
Perhaps 200-400 attendees, hot sun, quite a few “diversity” speakers: Kurdish man, Christian Arab, Copt, Hindus, Sudan ex-slave Simon Deng, scholar Mordechai Kadar, fabulous rap singer Ari on a whole bunch of lies and social issues — marvelous music and assonance/rhyming, terrific impassioned CUFI speaker (Christians United for Israel, with 1.6 million members). Many security people standing directly in front of me (what good would that be if violence erupted mid-crowd?). Some brilliant Hebrew speaker who looked like a Harlem gangster, but isn’t. Dov Hikind, whom I thought would have a stroke, he was getting so flushed and loud.
 
NYPD standing in front of us, kind of goggly with all the data and facts unspooled, all the strident facts and figures, all the recounting of terrible that has marked any Islamic national saga for 1,400 years. And all the singing and stuff. Desiree, the ardent Christian lady who comes to all our demos, had her long, long shofar, and blew it to punctuate major points in many speeches. She has good lungs. An Israeli cutie had a much shorter shofar; he blew his much less.
 
A Unitarian I know came over to me and said he has been banned from his church, one he has attended since he was 7, for 6 months. The church is 40% fallen Jews, but they are astringently anti-Israel, and I read the banning document, which was outrageous. No recourse, just shut up and do not even try to support Israel. They will arrest him if he comes too the church inside of 6 months. Scary. He is a very nice guy, too; soft-spoken but a strong supporter.
 
One t-shirt read, in Arabic and English: INFIDEL. Another read: Dead jihadis make great pig slop.
 
Flags in profusion along with hand-lettered placards. My sign read: Rescue the Yazidi. Some of the audience had no idea what the Yazidi are. But they learned.
 
Pens were given out that read: Humus good; hamas, bad.
 
Stickers were given out that read: I love the IDF.
 
Good loudspeakers: The secret to successful rallies anywhere.
 
We ended up dancing and singing. It began at 3:45, and ended at 7. No rain
 
A mostly youngish crowd, not the thatched snow fence that usually attends the tiny demos done by some passionate groups with few resources.
 
Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer pulled it off, along with Assaf and Maya, organizers; pal Bruce functioned as Security; and many former Russians and AFSI, STAND WITH US and CAMERA members. One kept searching the crowd for possible troublemakers. One friend told me he had seen a man in the crowd with a bunch of signs carrying swastikas. I had not seen the loon. But more worrisome than a lone Nazi was the ever-present fear that someone nearby could be a problem. There were 6 great flags from various, beliefs, sects and countries.
 
At one point, a few people pointed back toward the west side, and up. Just across the street from where we stood. There, some 10 flights up on a modern glass and steel apartment building, hung proudly over the railing of a patio, was a blue and white Star of David flag. In the UK, hanging such a flag elicited stones, broken windows and even a Molotov cocktail. In NYC, high up above Union Square Park, it hung there proud and civilized, reminding us of the differences between Here and …anywhere in Europe you could call There.

Yazidi Leader Haider Elias at AFDI Rally

Category: Media
Created on Saturday, 23 August 2014 05:25
Yazidi Leader Haider EliasA Yazidi leader and activist, Haider Elias, spoke at our rally in solidarity with the victims of the worldwide jihad. Mr. Elias was a member of the Yazidi delegation during the Sinjar crisis and a former U.S. army translator. During this Yazidi crisis, along with a delegation, Haider Elias has been working closely with the State Department to manage the crisis. 
 
The Muslim army forced tens of thousands of Yazidis and Christians to flee their homes or face certain death. Last weekend the Islamic State killed at least 500 killed prior to Friday’s news, according to Iraq’s human rights minister. They kidnapped hundreds of Yazidi girls, savagely raped them (many of them killed themselves after the gang rape). They buried Yazidi men alive, killed children and kidnapped women to be slaves.
 
The Yazidis, Jews, Christians, Sikhs, Hindus, Zoroastrians, Buddhists — minority populations oppressed, persecuted and slaughtered by Islamic jihad.
 
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AFDI makes history in Union Square

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 20 August 2014 07:16
NFEToday (08/17/2014)was an historic day. For the first time, defenders of Israel and representatives of minorities persecuted by Islamic jihadists from around the world gathered together to stand for life and for freedom. Finally, the truth.
 
Thousands of people gathered in Union Square for our AFDI rally, and onlookers couldn’t have missed the difference between our rally for life and the pro-Palestinian rallies for death: our rally was a true celebration, with singing and dancing and joy in living — a stark contrast to the genocidal Jew-hatred that at the rallies of supporters of jihad. We stood in Union Square today, all the victims and potential victims of jihad, in the coalition that needs to come together worldwide to defend freedom. We stood for life against death, for truth against lies, and for good against evil.
 
Our speakers provided harrowing insight into the full breadth and depth of the havoc and destruction that Islamic jihadists have unleashed upon the world. New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind gave a stirring appeal for Israel in its struggle against the jihad, and was seconded by the eloquent Ethiopian Jewish spokesman Mordechai Tasman and an IDF soldier who spoke of his own experiences. Dr. Mordechai Kedar flew from Israel for the rally, and showed how the jihadists are proceeding according to quranic imperatives.
 
What was unprecedented and groundbreaking about our rally was that these strong defenders of Israel were joined by others: Yazidi spokesman Haider Elias, the toweringly courageous and eloquent Sudanese freedom fighter Simon Deng, Palestinian Christian Mazzen Warra, Pastor Matthew Singh of Christians United for Israel, Indian human rights activist Arish Sahani, and Kurdish spokesman Salar Motidi — all of them recognized that we all face the same foe, and all of them ringingly affirmed the necessity for us to stand together for freedom.
 
The singing and dancing was striking, exhilarating. This was most truly a celebration of life. Singers Ron Eliran, Ari Lesser, and Beni Elbaz had the crowd on its feet, celebrating the beauty of life, of existence, of freedom. We love life; they love death. This is our power. This is why we will win. Pamela Hall videoed it all — after she kicked it off with a stirring rendition of the Star Spangled Banner. Check back for video — as I will be posting all.
 
Yet while the singing and the dancing were illustrative of our love for life, above all the speakers brought home the gravity of the situation we face: the grim reality of the global jihad that Obama is determined to abet and our other politicians are determined to ignore.
 
Predictably, the mainstream media ignored this groundbreaking event. CBS Local interviewed me, but their piece on the rally didn’t use a single word I said, and characterized the rally as solely pro-Israel, without any mention of our stand for persecuted Christians, Yazidis, Hindus, etc. And the main information CBS’s report gave was how many “Palestinians” have been killed in the recent conflict. Typical and egregious. There were speakers from all over the world, representing minorities at the front lines of Islamic State persecution, including the Yazidis and the media carried not a word — this wasn’t newsworthy?

A blow to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood as Israel crushes Hamas

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 09:39
IDFA few weeks ago shocking news arrived from Israel regarding the kidnapping of three young men. As news first circulated around the world, Israelis braced for the worst and prayed prayers for the safe delivery of the Israeli captives. How would this menacing action unfold for the victims and the country? Finally, we learned of their murders and the arrest of two Arab-Muslim suspects with links to Hamas. This horrific act of aggression against three Jews was committed in the first days of the Islamic month known as “blessed” Ramadan when fighting is forbidden. 
 
The ninth month of the Islamic Hegira calendar is set aside for believers to honor the revelation received by the 7th century prophet. Muslims must be dedicated to fasting, prayer, and charity to the poor. Most importantly, aggression by and against Muslims must cease. Disturbances by outsiders during this calendar month trigger Muslim sensitivities and heighten intolerance. Making this calculation, Hamas attacked Israel in this timeframe knowing it would enhance sentiment. Israel’s retaliation would always be viewed as sacrilegious securing world opinion in favor of Gaza terrorists where empathy is already heavily weighted. Hamas and Gazans remain in the more positive light despite their instigating acts provoking war in the month of Ramadan. 
 
About a week after the kidnappings, Kalid Mashaal, head of Hamas’ political bureau, boasted and blessed the kidnappers publicly with a bold announcement on Al Jazeera TV denying the involvement of Hamas.  Another Hamas leader, Ismail Haniyeh, already anticipating Israel’s counter-attack for the murders that had not yet been discovered (and Hamas rocket fire) appealed to the sympathy of the Egyptian people regarding Hamas’ “victimization,” stressing the importance of the remaining open tunnels between Egypt’s Sinai and the Gaza Strip -- ones that Al-Sisi has yet to dynamite shut in his commitment to destroy all illegal passages. Food and weaponry was now in demand by Gazans who needed Egypt to smuggle such provisions through the tunnels, indicated Haniyeh.   
 
Experts in Middle East conflict expected to see a demand on Israel to liberate particular terrorists as a ransom for the kidnapped boys. Such exchanges have been typical of the past. But why not this time? The answer: Hamas wanted to entice Egypt into warfare with Israel in order to help the Muslim Brotherhood regain power in Egypt. Hamas had a broader agenda for the kidnappings, murders, and rocket fire into Israel. Its aggression stirred up pro-Palestinian, pro-Hamas opinion by Egypt’s politicians, journalists and media in order to put pressure on Al-Sisi’s new government to help the “oppressed” Gazans. But Al-Sisi ignored the call to militarily aid Hamas deciding not to break Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel. 
Hamas intended Egypt to comply with its request. It was meant to be a distraction for Al-Sisi to interrupt his strenuous battle against the Muslim Brotherhood – the beginning of the long-awaited reversal of the damage being done to organized terror inside Egypt. Hamas’ ploy aimed to release Egypt’s MB of Al-Sisi’s grip availing it the time and space necessary to reenergize and regain power. But not only have the hopes of Hamas been dashed regarding its capacity to bait the religious issue and persuade Egypt’s Islamic leaders, but it wrongly predicted Egyptian sentiment mounting negative toward the existence of Hamas’ and its motives. The majority of the Egyptian public is attentive to Israel’s counter-attacks on Gaza with an unprecedented enthusiasm to see Hamas and its terror obliterated. 
 
Meanwhile, the Egyptian military will likely provide humanitarian assistance directly to Gazan civilians. This will bypass the finger pointing and embarrassment certain to come Al-Sisi’s way from the Egyptian Arab-Muslim community and the broader Islamic spectrum if Egypt were to take no action at all. Hamas presents a dilemma for Al-Sisi. Hamas’ terrorism against Israel carries with it the obligation for Muslim entities anywhere in the world to reach out on behalf of Hamas for the sake of Islamic doctrinal hate against Jews, a bond often underestimated by the West.  
 
Another motive of Hamas regards the U.S. and its allies. The White House will discern from Hamas violence and war on Israel, embarrassing as it is to the “peace process” conducted by the U.S. administration, that it is a direct consequence of Egypt’s MB collapse. No setback for the MB will be tolerated. After all, when Morsi was top dog, there was even talk of giving Hamas the northern third of Sinai to call its own. Back in the day, not that long ago, Hamas was of the ruling power and benefits were accruing -- some even say with the blessing of the White House. The game has changed in Egypt, and Hamas attacks Israel driving home this point.       
 
Across the Middle East, a dethroned MB struggles to recapture its glory in places like Iraq, Syria, and Libya. The people of these lands are fed-up with the results of the Arab Spring revolts that delivered MB rule to replace horrible dictatorships. Proxies for the MB (Al Qaeda, ISIS, Hamas, Ansar el Islam, et al), militant anti-occupation factions in Gaza forging “victimhood” stories for the world through their aggression towards Israel, fashion and enflame a crisis to bargain for a toppled MB. 
 
When all other direct means to rescue the Egyptian MB to date has been unsuccessful, their message is as if to say, “We will keep the heat turned up for Israel until the road is paved in Egypt to secure the return of power to the MB.” But Egypt, the birthplace of world terror, is steeled in battle to restrain and dissolve the MB -- Hamas’ latest aggression a test of Egypt’s resolve. Meanwhile, Israel demonstrates that Hamas will no longer play their game of extortion with the world at Israel’s expense.

Israel Must Abandon the Obscene "Purity of Arms" Mantra

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 08:18
Purity of ArmsThis military morality, which Jews call "purity of arms", ultimately is a form of surrender, of saying that IDF soldiers' lives are worth less than enemy civilians.
 
Is the Israeli army more Christian than the Christians themselves?  After all, it has, in fact, adopted the maxim of turning the other cheek. In Hebrew it is called havlagah.
 
The Israeli military disrupt missions against Hamas when in the radar they observe the presence of women and children.
 
The Israeli military calls the families of Palestinian neighbors of terrorists shortly before launching a raid.
 
The Israeli military evacuate entire Palestinian areas before an operation, with good manners, not with the nerve gas, like Assad in Syria, or phosphorus, like the Americans in Iraq.
 
Israeli soldiers heal Palestinians in Gaza in the Jewish hospitals.
 
The IDF is the only army which employed unprecedented efforts meant to minimize injury to non-combatants, including warning leaflets, phone calls, and non-lethal warning fire.
 
The Jewish State is waging a just war by fair means, proportionately, even too carefully, compared with international law that enshrines the right to self-defense.
 
No other people in the world is forced to similar levels of morality in its wars. But this military morality, which Jews call "purity of arms", ultimately is a surrender.
 
The Americans didn't win the war in Iraq by these moral means. The Russians didn't silence the Chechen question by these moral means. Only Israel adopted these under the word "proportionality".
 
The object of war is to win. It is to kill your enemies and cause them the maximum level of damage, to crush them into the dust, to make them lose all hope of victory.
 
It is immoral to prolong conflicts endlessly by preventing victory. But this is what Israel does.
 
Compare the current Gaza operation to the U.S. operation in Fallujah in late 2004. During the Fallujah attack, 6,000 Iraqis were killed and  50,000 buildings were destroyed, including 60 mosques. Israel acted differently, letting thousands of Israeli soldiers die needlessly in the Yom Kippur War of 1973, leaving Arafat alive fleeing Beirut in 1982, not crushing the First Intifada in 1987 with all its power, demoralizing itself during the Gulf war in 1991 and reaching the total debacle of the Second Intifada aka the Oslo War.
 
And the list now includes Hamas.
 
Jewish soldiers shouldn't be "merciful", must not show "restraint" or follow "purity of arms", but destroy the enemies who come to kill Jews. It is obscene that the Jews' mortal enemies, including prisoners of war, should be treated with such care and populations should be spared even if this care causes greater Israeli casualties.
 
"Purity of arms" is defeatism in the false clothing of morality.
 
And a reminder - was it "purity of arms" to use the army to deport thousands of Jews in Gaza?
 
Israel, the only piece of Western democracy bombed in the twenty-first century, is obliged to win its wars. The Western world, which lived the last war on its own soil seventy years ago, has no right to give moral lessons to the children and grandchildren of those who were abandoned in Treblinka's ovens.
 
Even in the ghettos of the Second World War, Jews discussed the morality of using weapons against the Germans. And we know how it ended.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He has just prblished a book about the Vatican and Israel titled "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.

The World Just Does Not Care, So Let the IDF Win!

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 18 July 2014 00:54
IDFWe Jews often claim that we are subject to a double standard – and we often are.  We claim that Israel is judged differently – and she is. Yet, sometimes we should accept the fact that the world just does not care about our issues, or other issues. And when they comment – or do not – life must goes on, regardless.
 
Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations addressed the media on Tuesday morning, stating “It has been five days since our boys went missing. I ask the international community – where are you? Where are you?” The UN General Assembly and Security Council have remained largely silent on the matter of the kidnapping- but the reality is that the world is in the midst of major upheaval. Hundreds of thousands murdered in Syria, the Ukraine-Russia conflict, escalating crises in Iraq. During it all, life across the world goes on. 
 
Rightfully, Jews worldwide have demanded to bring our brothers home. It’s been a tough few days for Clal Israel, Jews the world over, with the three missing boys.  The outrage from Jews worldwide has been loud and unified. And that is great – and that is what we should expect.
 
Israel should remember that the world just does not care. The world is quiet when Jews are attacked – and condemns us when Jews want to live.  And even if Israel does something they do not like – this too shall pass. Muslim extremists kidnapped Jewish teenagers – and naturally there are forces on social media that seek to equate Arab imprisoned murderer-terrorists with Jewish innocent teenagers. They are wrong – and we alone are right.
 
Israel needs to remember that when the IDF fights– and protects our people, that the world just does not care.  If they condemn the Jewish state, as my mom, Penny Waga Z’L used to always tell me –  this too shall pass.
 
When Israel fights back the world will condemn Israel – And we must accept it just as we accept the sun coming up in the morning.  
 
What matters more is that decent people worldwide stand on the side of truth.  Israel stands for the good guys.
 
Support the Israel Defense Forces – and let the IDF Win. 
 
May Eyal Yifrcah, Gil-Ad Shaer, and Naftali Fraenkel be returned safely to their homes.
 
Ronn TorossianRonn Torossian
The author is CEO of 5WPR, 1 of the 25 largest PR Agencies in the US.

Apartheid State? Israel?

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 15:08
KerrySecretary of State John Kerry’s recent remark about Israel being an “apartheid state” is just one in a series of statements he has made in the last several months that indicate that he has crossed over the line from being an “honest broker” in a dispute to being an advocate for one side. It is as though the identical person simultaneously serves as both referee and coach for one team.
 
First of all, on the face of things, the description of Israel as an apartheid  state is so ludicrous that it would be droll, if the implications of the fact that it emanated out of the mouth of America’s chief diplomat were not so grave. Israel has Arab citizens serving in its parliament; its national beauty queen is an Arab; every Israeli hospital treats all those in need of care, whether Arab, Christian, Muslim or Jew with equal urgency, sensitivity and expertise.
 
Israeli Defense Force medics are currently on the Golan Heights giving sorely needed medical care to hundreds of Syrians, without regard to whether they have been wounded fighting for the Assad regime or for the opposition.
 
It would be quite remarkable if we could see parallel actions among Israel’s 22 Arab neighbors, or among the 57 Muslim states.
 
This comment of Mr. Kerry’s is just one in a series of comments that reveal the Secretary of State’s jaundiced eye towards the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
 
In November, while speaking in Amman, Jordan, he had said, “Does Israel want a third intifada?” Suggesting that the only alternative for the Jewish state to the maximalist demands that the Palestinian Authority was placing on Israel is for the Palestinians to wage renewed violence against Israel?
 
This is highly irresponsible; because it connotes that the government of the United States would understand and condone a renewed outbreak of violence against Israeli civilians.
 
In February, Secretary of State Kerry threatened that if the talks do not succeed, “The risks are very high for Israel; People are talking about boycott.” In other words, if Israel and the Palestinians do not reach a peace accord, they risk further isolation and delegitimization in the international community.
 
This is yet another threat from America’s chief diplomat, bestowing a sense of understanding of, and therefore concurs a sort of legitimacy to, the boycott, divest and sanctions movement against the state of Israel from the United States.
 
And then, while testifying before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on April 8th, Mr. Kerry put the onus of the breakdown of the talks solely on the shoulders of the Israelis, he stated, “Unfortunately, the prisoners weren’t released on the Saturday they were supposed to be released … day (one) went by, day two went by, day three went by, and then in the afternoon, when they were about to maybe get there, 700 settlement units were announced in Jerusalem, and poof, that was sort of the moment.”
 
It is an interesting fact that just before Secretary Kerry made this statement, on April 1st Palestinian Authority spokesman Ahmad Assaf had boasted that he had “blackmailed Israel to release its prisoners.” And last December, senior PA leader Nabil Shaath stated that the only reason the Palestinians had not “stopped negotiations” is because they “want to fulfill our goal of having all the prisoners released.”
 
Mr. Kerry’s statement also glaringly omits the following facts:
 
The prisoner release had never been a subject of the negotiations. Releasing these  beloved murderers of innocents and terrorists was something that the United States had encouraged Israel to do simply to get the Palestinians to deign to sit down to the negotiating table with Israel.
 
In April of 2004, before the internally gut-wrenching decision that the Israelis had made to withdraw from Gaza, a letter was sent from President George Bush to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, expressing what the President called “ an ironclad assurance”  that “The United States reiterates its steadfast commitment to Israel’s security including secure, defensible borders”, “In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli population centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949, and all previous efforts to negotiate a two-state solution have reached the same conclusion.
 
The apartments that Mr. Kerry referred to were to have been built in Gilo, a suburb of Jerusalem and “already existing major Israeli population center.”
 
What has become of America’s past ironclad assurances to Israel under this administration? I suppose that they had suffered the same fate as our missile defense treaties to Poland and the Czech Republic, as well as the vanishing “Syrian red line.”
 
The point is, however, that Mr. Kerry’s biases could only serve to further calcify the maximalist demands of Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority, to aid legitimacy to those who want to wage further violence or war against, or to isolate and boycott the Jewish state, and to further weaken the already illusory chances of a sustainable peace in the Middle East.
 
Sarah SternSarah Stern, EMET
The writer is founder of the Endowment for Middle East Truth. EMET’s mission is to educate policymakers in Washington and the general public about the importance of Israel to the United States in their common struggle against radical Islam. www.emetonline.org.

Who Will Be There For Israel?

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 18 May 2014 12:03
Israel Defense ForcesTalmudic Sage Hillel the Elder had timeless words for us to take to heart. Obama paraphrased them, but missed the most important phrase of all.
 
“If not now, when?  And if not you, Mr. Prime Minister, then who?”
 
Those were the timeless words of the Talmudic sage Rabbi Hillel, paraphrased, added to and ironically invoked by President Obama to ambush the Jewish Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, on his trip to Washington DC earlier this year.  They are more ironic than ever after the terrorist ambush of Officer Baruch Mizrahi, father of five, several hours before the Passover Seder.
 
Obama cited Rabbi Hillel to mock the 'nettlesome' stubbornness preventing Netanyahu from acceding to Obama's vision the "inevitability" of "peace," and the creation of a PA terror state in Judea and Samaria. Obama, however, skipped the real wisdom of Rabbi Hillel's maxim, the phrase immediately applicable to Israel: "If am not for myself, who will be for me?"  
 
Transposed to Israel's current predicament, the question becomes, "If Israel is not for Israel, who will be for Israel?"  After the "best-friend-Israel-ever-had" went "poof,"  we are all forced to face the ugly truth. Obama and Kerry don't have Israel's back, unless it is with a knife.  But, Obama has Iran's back. And, Israel is all alone (except for, maybe, the "moderate" Sunnis, whatever that implies).
 
The media reported that Netanyahu was "deeply disappointed" by Kerry's "poof speech" in which Kerry blamed Israel alone for the breakdown of talks.  I have one question: When would Israel like to be "deeply disappointed" by the fact that Obama wants Israel eradicated: before or after Israel gives up defensible mountains of Judea and Samaria that overlook Tel Aviv and Jerusalem? Before or after more freed terrorist murderers encourage others that there is nothing to lose (and a stipend from Abbas to gain) by killing Jews?
 
If Obama and Kerry stab Israel in the back now in a collegial Senate hearing, how would Obama and Kerry betray Israel when the Palestinian Katyusha rockets fly from Kalkilya in the PA state into Tel Aviv, or Palestinian terrorist mortars from the "liberated" Temple Mount pound into the Israeli Knesset? 
 
What would Kerry or Obama would do to protect Israel: Zero. No, I strike "Zero," they would vote against Israel in the UN.
 
So the issue is Rabbi Hillel's first question in the paraphrased maxim: "If Israel is not for Israel, who will be for Israel? The problem is that the Israelis themselves are not for the Israelis. Forget about American Jews!  Forget the Jewish diaspora!  Look at the suicidal Jewish members of Knesset.  For example, Meretz’s Zahava Gal-On just likened PM Netanyahu, Liberman, Bennett, Lapid to the Haggadah’s 4 brothers — except instead of the wise, wicket, simple and childish sons of the Haggadah, she opines that three are wicked and ‘one doesn’t know how to quit.’
 
And how about Israel's "Justice Minister" who threatens Israelis with BDS instead of fighting it?  How long would anyone keep a lawyer who spent all his waking hours working on how to destroy your case and win the case for your opponent? But, Israelis actually voted for Tzipi Livni, enabling her to capture a position like "Justice Minister."  It's Chelm.
 
How can American Jews be for a "defensible Israel" when a right-of-center Israel government's Justice Minister isn't for a "defensible Israel"?  And on top of that, Livni hysterically expounds that a "defensible Israel" is a "bi-national state."  
 
Is Israeli PM Netanyahu for a really "defensible Israel"?  Did Netanyahu defend Israeli Defense Minister Ya'alon, when Ya'alon accurately called Kerry a "messianic, obsessed" person who doesn't understand Israel's defense needs?  No, Netanyahu attacked Ya'alon for telling the truth - that the "Emperor had no clothes and was delusional."  Netanyahu criticized Ya'alon by saying "sometimes we should talk less, and act more." 
 
"Talk less" about publicly defending Israel's defensive needs??  That's exactly Israel's problem.  How do you "talk less" than nothing?  No Israeli official is publicly explaining in the official name of the State of Israel why Israel needs Judea and Samaria to defend itself.  From Netanyahu's and Israel's deafening silence, any rational person would conclude that Judea and Samaria are not important for Israel's survival. 
 
All the Israeli Nobel science prizes in the world and billion-dollar start-ups in the world won't make a damn bit of difference if Israel - whether willingly or by force - creates an Iranian-terror-state in Judea and Samaria which can rocket Israel to "Kingdom come, 'Obama's' will be done.'
 
Perhaps I should properly rephrase, transpose, and repeat Obama's Talmudic question:  If Israel is not for Israel, who will be for Israel?  And, if not you, Mr. Prime Minister Netanyahu, then who?  And, if not now, when?  For, if Prime Minister Netanyahu doesn't explain the truth now about Judea and Samaria's critical defensive importance to Israel, when will he ever explain the truth?
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who specializes in security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com.

Khamenei: Israel the 'Most Wicked Terrorists' in the World

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 17 May 2014 14:56
Irans Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei R meets Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Tehran Dec. 15 2009.Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on Wednesday once again launched an attack on Israel and accused its government of being “wicked terrorists”.
 
Khamenei’s latest attack on the Jewish state came in a series of tweets on the occasion of Nakba Day, on which Arabs mark what they see as a the “catastrophe” of Israel’s establishment.
 
“#Israel was initially established thru oppression, massacre & lie; an invader aided by UK expelled #Palestinians out of their homes,” read one tweet.
 
“Palestinians' homes & land were given by force to ppl [sic] from Europe, US etc. & they fabricated a fake nation in #Palestine,” read another one.
 
“During the over half a century since the existence of #fake Israeli state, suppression, lies & deception have been central to Israel's survival,” Khamenei wrote, adding, “Then the US president shamelessly says that: to prevent terrorism we cooperate with Israel!”
 
“Which terrorists?! The Palestinian who's been driven out of his homeland?! No! The most wicked #terrorists of the world is fake Israeli govt [sic],” read yet another tweet by the Supreme Leader.
 
The Twitter attack on Israel is simply the latest in an ongoing rhetoric used for years by Khamenei and other Iranian leaders.
 
In November, Khamenei said that Israel is a "regime doomed to collapse" and referred to the Jewish state as "the rabid dog of the region".
 
Several weeks before that, he called Israel an "illegitimate and bastard regime," and further called the United States a "smiling enemy" that is not to be trusted.
 
Khamenei has also denied the Holocaust, saying in March, "In European countries, no one dares to talk about the Holocaust, and we do not know if it's real or not."

Sisi: There's a Chance for 'True Peace' with Israel

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 14 May 2014 17:36
Abdel Fattah al-Sisi -ReutersAbdel Fattah Al-Sisi, the leading candidate in the race for Egypt’s presidency, said Monday that there is a chance for “true peace” with Israel, if it adopts the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative.
 
The comments by Sisi were made in an interview to Sky News, the same interview in which he stated that, if elected, he would be willing to consider making changes to the peace agreement with Israel.
 
“There is a real opportunity to establish peace with Israel and for it to be able to exist naturally in the region, if it accepts the Arab Peace Initiative,” he said, referring to the initiative presented in 2002 by Saudi Arabia, and which demands that Israel withdraw completely from Judea and Samaria, at which point the 22 Arab countries would supposedly normalize relations with Israel.
 
Similar comments were made last week by Egypt’s former foreign minister, Amr Moussa, though he made his comments in the context of Hamas, which he said must recognize the existence of Israel in order to make it possible to move forward with a Palestinian state.
 
“I believe that Hamas should declare its acceptance of the Arab initiative of 2002, which is the map of normalization and recognition of the state of Israel together with the establishing of the Palestinian state and the withdrawal of the occupied territory,” said Moussa, who is close to Sisi.
 
In the interview with Sky News, Sisi referred to Hamas and said that “Hamas's positions caused it to lose the sympathy and empathy on the part of the Egyptian people.”
 
Egypt, which was once close to Hamas, has grown increasingly hostile to the group after the Egyptian military ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi. Hamas is an offshoot of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Last month, an Egyptian court outlawed Hamas, much like it banned the Muslim Brotherhood earlier this year, and ordered all of its assets seized.

Kerry Can't Keep Kidding Himself on 'Palestine'

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 13 May 2014 22:34
John-Kerry-a Muslim Brotherhood in EgyptThe negotiations have failed. Why not try something realistic?
 
US Secretary of State John Kerry’s unshakeable belief that he could succeed in facilitating what had eluded former American Secretaries of State for the last 20 years – the creation of a 22nd Arab State in the "West Bank" and Gaza for the first time ever in recorded history - has been shattered following Israel cancelling the release of 26 prisoners convicted of terrorist attacks prior to the 1993 Oslo Accords.
 
Israel’s action was in response to the PLO lodging applications to join 15 UN international agencies in breach of its commitments not to do so whilst negotiations between Israel and the PLO were being conducted.
 
Kerry now needs to immediately focus his attention on Jordan - the last Arab State to have occupied Judea and Samaria between 1948 -1967 and which – together with Israel – comprise the two successor States to the Mandate for Palestine 1920-1948.
 
Redrawing Jordan’s international boundary with Israel to a situation that leads to the status quo existing before the outbreak of the 1967 Six Day War - as far as is now possible given the changed circumstances on the ground and keeping Jewish communities intact – provides a realistically achievable alternative to the doomed Israel-PLO negotiations.
 
Lorenzo Kamel - a historian at Bologna University and a visiting fellow at Harvard’s Center for ­Middle Eastern Studies - has published an error-riddled article attempting to distance Jordan from becoming involved in any such negotiations – which Kerry should unequivocally reject.
 
Kamel’s following misleading claims have been corrected by my bold responses:
 
 1. “Whenever there is a concrete effort to push forward the peace process, talk about 'a substitute homeland' for the Palestinians re-emerges. Most of those supporting this scheme claim that well before the partition suggested by the UN General Assembly in 1947, the Zionist movement suffered a mutilation of territory following the unilateral British decision in 1922 to separate Transjordan from the rest of the land subject to the Mandate for Palestine…
 
...” Transjordan was thus part of the Mandate for Palestine with the proviso that Britain might administer it separately and for a period which at best may be considered scarcely relevant.”
 
Transjordan remained subject to the Mandate for Palestine from 1920 until 1946.
 
It was only the provisions of the Mandate relating to the reconstitution of the Jewish National Home in Palestine that were “postponed or withheld” in Transjordan under article 25 of the Mandate –  as this Note presented by the Secretary General to the League of Nations clearly stated:
 
"In the application of the Mandate to Transjordan, the action which, in Palestine, is taken by the Administration of the latter country will be taken by the Administration of Transjordan under the general supervision of the Mandatory.
 
"His Majesty's Government accepts full responsibility as Mandatory for Transjordan, and undertake that such provision as may be made for the administration of that territory in accordance with Article 25 of the Mandate shall be in no way inconsistent with those provisions of the Mandate which are not by this resolution declared inapplicable."
 
The seeds for an independent Jew-free Arab State in 78% of Palestine had thus been planted by Great Britain in 1922.
 
Transjordan achieved its eventual independence on May 25, 1946 - whilst the remaining 22% of Palestine continued to be subject to the Mandate until 1948.
 
2. “Transjordan, unlike Palestine, was never occupied by British troops and during the mandatory period there was no 'overlapping', either at a legal or practical level, between the two areas.”
 
The Arab Legion was formed in Transjordan in 1923 and financed by Britain and commanded by British officers under Captain Frederick Peake.
 
Transjordan was always included in the annual Report for the Mandate for Palestine presented to the League of Nations Permanent Mandates Commission.
 
 “A citizen of Transjordan was required to ask for official permission before being admitted to Palestine.”
 
Immigration from Transjordan was not illegal, and was not recorded as immigration at all until 1938
 
3. “The awareness that Palestine was distinct from Syria and Lebanon is said to have always been present in the Arab and Muslim consciousness.”
 
An early nineteenth-century Egyptian historian, 'Abd ar-Rahman al-Jabarti, referred to the inhabitants of El Arish in the Sinai Peninsula as Syrians. Palestine was called Southern Syria first in French, then in other languages, including Arabic. …
 
…Indeed, from the moment Prince Faysal set up a government in Damascus in October 1918, he stressed that Palestine was a part of Syria. At the Paris Peace Conference, where the British, French and Americans sorted out their interests after the war, Faysal called Palestine his "right hand" and promised to work for it as he would for Syria and Iraq. "I assure you, according to the wishes of its people, Palestine will be a part of Syria." Three months later, Faysal wrote General Edmund Allenby that Palestine "is an inseperable [sic] part of Syria."
 
4.“Zionism certainly accelerated the general development of the region and the process of self-identification of the local majority, but never did the land beyond the Jordan have a religious, social or cultural value comparable to the land between the river and the Mediterranean Sea.
 
Kamel’s claim is refuted by article 2 of the PLO Charter which states that “Palestine with the boundaries it had during the British Mandate is an indivisible territorial unit.”
 
Negotiations between Jordan and Israel have now become the only answer to avoiding renewed conflict and violence between Jews and Arabs.
 
Kerry is kidding himself if he thinks otherwise.
 
David Singer
David Singer is an Australian lawyer who is active in Zionist community...
 

Sisi: If Needed, We'll Amend Peace Treaty with Israel

Category: News
Created on Monday, 12 May 2014 11:39
Al SisiEgypt’s former army chief and leading presidential candidate, Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, said Sunday that, if elected, he would be willing to consider making changes to the peace agreement with Israel.
 
"If we are asked to make amendments to the peace treaty with Israel, we will do it," Sisi said in an interview with Sky News, his first interview with foreign media since announcing his candidacy.
 
The comments by Sisi are in contrast to ones he made just last week, when he told local media that he would “respect all international treaties and contracts, including the peace treaty with Israel.”
 
In the same breath, however, Sisi also said that if Israel won't recognize the "state of Palestine," with its capital in Jerusalem, he will never visit Israel.
 
The 1979 treaty has been increasingly put in question since the 2011 revolution which toppled former President Hosni Mubarak.
 
Under the regime of Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi, there were calls to urgently change the peace treaty with Israel, with an adviser to the Islamist president saying that in its current form, the historic treaty maintains the national security of the “Zionist enemy” more than it helps Egypt's national security.
 
Despite the calls, Morsi maintained the peace treaty, though at one he rejected an Israeli request to upgrade the relations between the countries and also recalled the Egyptian ambassador to Israel in protest of Israel’s counterterrorism Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza in late 2012.
 
Tamarod, the Egyptian movement which led the opposition to Morsi, has since his ouster began collecting signatures to a new initiative calling to cancel the peace treaty with Israel.
 
Last year, the Cairo Administrative Court ruled that it has no jurisdiction over a lawsuit demanding the cancellation of the 1979 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.

Egypt's Sisi Demands Israel Recognize 'Palestine'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 07 May 2014 11:05
al-SisiEgypt's ex-army chief and leading presidential candidate Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi declared that if Israel won't recognize the "state of Palestine," with its capital in Jerusalem, he will never visit Israel.
 
Speaking in a TV interview on Saturday, Sisi added "Egypt is a country whose policy, history and honor to contracts and treaties is firmly rooted. I'm part of the country, and will respect all international treaties and contracts, including the peace treaty with Israel."
 
Sisi's lip service to the peace treaty signed with Israel in 1979 comes as the treaty has been increasingly put in question since the 2011 "Arab Spring."
 
Addressing the Israeli government, Sisi said "a true opportunity is before you to have a true peace treaty with the Palestinian Authority (PA), which is necessary to open the 'gate of hope' in the (Middle East) region."
 
Peace talks with the PA were torpedoed after PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas refused to recognize Israel as the Jewish state, breached talk conditions by applying to 15 international conventions, and signed a unity deal with the terrorist group Hamas.
 
For his part, Sisi promised on Monday that the Muslim Brotherhood would not be allowed to exist in Egypt if he wins the upcoming May 26-27 elections, in which he is strongly favored over his lone contender. The Muslim Brotherhood is associated with Hamas, and Egypt has recently banned both groups.
 
An Egyptian court last month passed death sentences on 683 Muslim Brotherhood members. In another case in which 529 Muslim Brotherhood supporters were sentenced to death the month before, the judge upheld 37 death sentences but reversed the death sentences sentences of the other 492, commuting most to life in prison. Most of the people sentenced were tried in absentia.

Declare Abbas a Terrorist

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 02 May 2014 20:38
Mahmoud Abbas and Khaled Mashaal archiveAbbas always knows exactly what he is doing and why. The Israelis are finally catching on.
 
The gloves are off. Israel has had enough. Or so it surely seems.
 
When Israel’s left of center Justice Minister Tzipi Livni bails out in disgust it can only mean that the entire nation has finally awakened to the truth about Mahmoud Abbas. He is a terrorist. Time for Israel to say so and declare him an outlaw.  All that remains is to make it official, give him a head start, and send him into the woods along with the rest of his Palestinian Authority. 
 
A late breaking development comes close to designating Abbas persona non grata.
 
As of the other day, Israel has suspended all top-level contacts with the PA. That is a step in the right direction.
 
Abbas spoiled Secretary of State John Kerry’s magnificent obsession when he, Abbas, scuttled “peace talks” by turning in self-pity to the United Nations. This, after Israel saw no benefit in releasing yet another batch of murderers…26 of them.  Seeing that this time he won’t be able to dance in the streets with his brother terrorists, Abbas submitted applications for membership in 15 UN organizations.
 
A man always knows where he can find love.     
 
Abbas says he can probably join 500 UN subsidiaries. No doubt he can. Give him this: He knows the UN. He knows the world.
 
Like Arafat before him, he knows there’s a reservoir of anti-Semitism upon which he can always draw.
 
So he makes demands, knowing that there is no need for peace – he does not want peace. He only wants to box Israel into a corner. His BDS dogs are always on the prowl and ready to attack. Campuses here in the United States and around the globe are ready to march at his signal.
 
The Israelis are finally catching on. Here’s a voice from the Israeli right after Abbas demanded the surrender of Jerusalem. Naftali Bennett, Israel’s Minister of the Economy, responded thusly on his Facebook page: “You want a commitment? Here you go: Eastern Jerusalem will never be your capital.”
 
Likewise, Abbas insists that Israel must return to its 1967 borders. Note: These are not negotiating points. These are demands.
 
Abbas demands that Israel must absorb more “Palestinian refugees” (of which the supply is endless.)
 
Abbas demands that Israel must release 1,500 more prisoners.
 
Abbas demands that Israel must stop construction in East Jerusalem.
 
Abbas demands that the IDF must stop chasing killers when they hide in his shelters.
 
Who elected Abbas king of anything? Who is he to make demands? He doesn’t even have a country! He is a “chairman” of some thing only because in 1993 Israel signed the Oslo Accords and presto, one thug became chairman, another thug was named president, and still a third brute was titled prime minister. Israel bestowed these appellations as gestures of goodwill.
 
Israel needed a peace partner so it created one, but it turned out to be Frankenstein.
 
What it got was one generation of terrorists after another. Abbas is no different from Hitler’s friend, the Mufti of Jerusalem.
 
He is no different from his predecessor the mass murderer Yasser Arafat.
 
Only that Abbas wears a suit. He should be wearing prison stripes.
 
He glorifies killers on street signs and in schoolbooks.
 
If it quacks like a terrorist, it is a terrorist.
 
Jack Engelhard writes a weekly column for Arutz Sheva. New from the bestselling novelist, the enhanced edition of his best-selling post-Holocaust memoir Escape From Mount Moriah. Website: www.jackengelhard.com
 
 
Jack EngelhardJack Engelhard
Jack Engelhard’s classic international bestselling novel Indecent Proposal, which later became a worldwide hit movie, has been republished to meet readers’ demands. His other major works include Compulsive: A Novel, his award-winning post-Holocaust Montreal memoir Escape from Mount Moriah, plus Slot Attendant: A Novel About A Novelist. His website: www.jackengelhard.com

'Israel Should Divide the PA into Emirates'

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 01 May 2014 09:47
Terrorists brandish RPG in GazaAs hype and hysteria over the Hamas-Fatah (PLO/PA) unity pact continues, many experts are concerned over Israel's future. 
 
But at least one expert has said that the unity pact will work in Israel's favor: Arutz Sheva columnist Dr. Mordechai Keidar, an expert on the Israeli-Arab sector, and an Arabic literature professor at Bar-Ilan University. 
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"I think that it will not be different from many agreements which both sides have signed [over the] last five or six years," Keidar stated Friday, in a special interview with Arutz Sheva. "Since nothing [was] implemented on the ground, this agreement also will face the same fate."
 
"Hamas will never give up on their guns, will never give up on their governing of Gaza, will never give up on their weapons, will never give up on their money, on whatever they have," he continued, "and the PLO, from the other side, [again] will not give up their achievements which they have achieved, especially in the international arena." 
 
"This is why, I think, within the [first] few weeks of negotiations on how to implement the understanding of the past few days, I think both sides will fail," he added. 
 
Keidar emphasized that concerns over the Fatah-Hamas unity pact are, in his opinion, grossly over-hyped. 
 
"I'm not taking part in this 'lamentation orgy' you see these days because of this 'reunion' between the PLO and Hamas," Keidar stated. "The differences are so deep culturally, economically, and when it comes to statehood."
 
He noted that while "Hamas is marching toward its seventh year of statehood [control] over Gaza," a PLO-backed state "might die in the cradle." 
 
Israel's Response: Divide and Conquer?
 
According to Dr. Keidar, Israel's answer to the unity pact should be to confiscate the PLO's weapons while it has a "legitimate reason to do so." 
 
"Israel should, first of all, confiscate all of the weapons which the Palestinian security organizations have here, especially the American weapons," he said. "These weapons can come into the hands of Hamas, especially if they win the elections [in the PA], which they have been trying to arrange." 
 
"American weapons in the hands of Hamas is something which Israel should not tolerate," he stressed, noting that the time is right for Israel to do so, given that they have "good reason for why to confiscate" them. This way, he said, the unity pact could actually benefit Israel - not pose a danger, as several experts have stated. 
 
Keidar then called for Israel to take a secondary, more radical step: dividing the PA into emirates, according to regional clans. 
 
"In a second phase, Israel should dismantle the PA by stopping [the transfer of] money and by all other kinds of measures," he stated. "[And] then, [it] should create on the ruins of the PA seven emirates in the West Bank [Judea-Samaria - ed.] based on the cities - Ramallah, Jericho, Nablus (Shechem), Tul-Karim, Qalqaliya, and the Arab part of Hevron."
 
"Each of these emirates should be based on the local clans, which are powerful - which are loyal to themselves, unlike the PLO." 
 
Keidar did say, however, that Israel would continue to remain involved: by not allowing Hamas to come to power, as happened in Gaza seven years ago. 

'Abbas Can Have Peace with Israel or Hamas - Not Both'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 29 April 2014 08:39
Binyamin NetanyahuPrime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu addressed flailing attempts to rekindle peace talks with the Palestinian Authority (PA) Wednesday, during a meeting with Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz.
 
"You're coming at an important time," he told Kurz. "We're trying to re-launch the negotiations with the Palestinians."
 
"Every time we get to that point, [PA Chairman Mahmoud] Abbas stacks on an additional condition which he knows that Israel cannot give," he explained. "So instead of moving toward peace with Israel, he's moving toward peace with Hamas."
 
"He has to choose," Netanyahu mused. "Does he want peace with Hamas or peace with Israel? You can have one but not the other. I hope he chooses peace, [but] so far he hasn't done so."
 
After torpedoing peace talks by applying to 15 international conventions, threatening to disband the PA, and approaching Hamas for a unity pact, Abbas reiterated more demands to Israel on Tuesday - this time insisting on a three-month construction freeze in Judea and Samaria prior to renewing peace talks.
 
The move sparked outrage among several ministers, including Deputy Minister Ofir Akunis, who declared "Abbas is (former PA Chairman Yasser) Arafat in disguise."
 
"The Palestinian leadership under Abbas just changed its tone and not its essence," he argued. "Under the honey-coated words and diplomacy is hiding an extremist leadership which is not interested in peace or an agreement, but rather in endless extortion of terrorist releases, concessions and withdrawals by Israel - just as a condition to have peace talks."

Israel Is 'Destroying' Al-Aqsa Mosque for 'Alleged' Temple

Category: News
Created on Friday, 25 April 2014 17:48
Temple Mount Old CityThe Palestinian Authority (PA) has been stepping up its libel that Israel is "destroying" the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, in order to build the "alleged" Temple.
 
The highest PA religious authority, Mufti Muhammad Hussein, asserted in late March that Israel was making an "attempt... at lay[ing] hands on the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque... [and] in addition to the threat of destroying the Al-Aqsa Mosque to establish the alleged Temple on its ruins."
 
Palestinian Media Watch translated the comments, which were made by the same mufti who in 2012 publicly called for the genocide of the Jewish people.
 
The comments were made ahead of the recent series of Arab riots on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem raging since last week, in which Israeli police have been attacked by rocks and firebombs, and limits have been placed on Muslim visitors as well as Jewish visitors.
 
Destroying to "erect what they call 'the Temple'"
 
Similarly Khaled Mismar, Chairman of the Political Committee of the Palestinian National Council, the legislative body of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) reiterated the libels on March 30 on official PA TV.
 
"Now they want to divide up the Al-Aqsa Mosque (i.e., the Temple Mount Plaza). Furthermore, they want to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque and erect what they call 'the Temple' over Al-Aqsa," remarked Mismar.
 
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On the same day, official PA TV broadcast a cartoon from the Jordanian newspaper Al-Dustur on its show Circle of Events.
 
The cartoon depicts Israel as a monstrous soldier eating the Dome of the Rock Mosque, while a Hamas activist holds a flag with the word "Land," and a Fatah activists holds a flag with the word "Day."
 
"Land Day" is an event in which extremist Arabs protest the Jewish victories in the wars started by Arab nations since 1948, and the expropriation of land previously held by Arab residents in the aftermaths of these wars.

Arafat's Bodyguard: He Lied When Denouncing Bombings in Israel

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 13 April 2014 09:09
Palestinian Arabs hold Nazi flag at Netzarim Junction - ReutersFor years, former Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Yasser Arafat would condemn terrorist attacks against Israelis, but there was a question mark regarding the authenticity of his claims.
 
Now, Arafat’s former bodyguard has confirmed that the late PA chairman would lie when he condemned suicide bombings in Israel.
 
The bodyguard, Muhammad Al-Daya, made the comments in an interview on BBC Arabic which aired on April 3. It was translated and posted to YouTube by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
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Al-Daya revealed in the interview that after a suicide bombing in Israel, then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak would call Arafat and pressure him to condemn the attack.
 
“Then Arafat would condemn the bombing in his own special way, saying: ‘I am against the killing of civilians.’ But that wasn’t true,” said Al-Daya.
 
He also justified Arafat’s actions, saying, “Islam allows you to lie in three cases: In order to reconcile two people...If your wife is ugly, you are allowed to tell her she is the most beautiful woman alive. The third case is politics. You are allowed to lie in politics.”
 
More than nine years after his death, Arafat has been making headlines in recent months. His widow allowed investigators to exhume Arafat’s body after traces of polonium-210 were found on clothing that she provided to scientists as part of an Al Jazeera documentary.
 
A team of Swiss scientists later claimed that it was likely Arafat was killed by polonium poisoning, though they clarified that the test results neither confirmed nor denied polonium was the actual cause of his death.
 
A team of Russian forensic experts later said that Arafat died of "natural causes", and ruled out radiation poisoning as a cause of death.
 
PA society has long given currency to the rumor that Arafat was murdered, with Israel the party most often blamed, but there has never been any proof. Israeli leaders for their part have repeatedly denied any role in his death, dismissing such suggestions as pure fiction.

Israel Sanctions PA Following Unilateral Move

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 05 April 2014 10:00
Unilateral Move to UNIsrael on Thursday informed the Palestinian Authority (PA) of a series of punitive measures against it, following the PA’s request to join 15 international conventions.
 
According to Kol Yisrael radio, these measures include a suspension of high-level contacts between ministers and CEOs, and any contacts with the PA will now be led by the Coordinator of Government Activities in Judea and Samaria, Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai.
 
It was also decided to freeze the implementation of 3G cellular technology in PA-assigned areas and stop the transfer into Gaza of communications equipment belonging to the PA cellular phone company Watania. Another punitive measure is a freeze on promotion master plans for new communities in Area C.
 
Israel is looking into further sanctions on the PA, according to Kol Yisrael.
 
On Wednesday night, the UN's special envoy on Mideast peace had confirmed he received requests from PA officials to join international conventions and treaties, including the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations, the convention on the rights of the child, the convention against torture, and the one against corruption.
 
The PA’s ambassador to the UN later threatened that the PA could join up to 550 international treaties and conventions, including the International Criminal Court.
 
On Thursday, Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, who has been the Israeli negotiator in the peace talks with PA, announced that the fourth and final batch of terrorist releases has been officially cancelled due to the PA’s unilateral move.
 
"New conditions have been created, and Israel cannot free the prisoners of the fourth batch," announced Livni.

How Israel Abandoned the 'Settlers'

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 03 April 2014 12:54
judeaIt is time of trial for the Jewish people.
 
In the last few months there has been much talk of giving up Jewish communities, of abandoning “the settlers” to their fate under another Arab-Islamic dictatorship. But the brave and honest Jews of Judea and Samaria have already been abandoned by the State of Israel and its oligarchy.
 
The Jews of Judea and Samaria, who are stronger than the Israeli apparatus, have been exposed to a permanent danger. Their lives have been put in severe jeopardy.
 
Despite the fact that “the territories” have been the scene of terrorist attacks that take place only a few minutes’ drive away from the urban center of Israel, the Dan region, the Jews living in Judea and Samaria have been used as guinea pigs by the security establishment which likes to talk about “the danger of Jew fighting Jew”.
 
The Jew of Judea and Samaria controls the “settlement” in which he can live and the road leading to his town, but the area surrounding it has been de facto given over to the terrorists. And more significantly, Jews have been deprived of the right to defend themselves and even to be protected, as proven by the missiles that rained on Gush Katif with no reaction from the IDF.
 
The unofficial but successful IDF policy is to get its soldiers out Judea and Samaria, thus exposing the “settlers” to threats so as to make them despair and abandon their homes, or at the very least to foment a security situation that would prevent the natural growth of a community. These Jews must become passive pawns in the political surrender of their homes.
 
The IDF turned their back and the civilian rear has been placed on the front lines of the battle. Despite the undeclared state of war in Judea and Samaria from 1987 to today, the residents and the army have been forbidden to use weapons to repel the bloody attacks. Because in Israel’s eyes, both sides are equally aggressive, “the settlers” and “the terrorists” (or are they "militants"?), so that the attacker and the defender are placed in the same boat.
 
In 1987 the Army Chief of Staff, Dan Shomron, distributed Alistair Horne’s book “Barbaric War for Peace”  to convince his commanders that one has to learn from the French precedent, in which “although the French won militarily, they were still forced to evacuate Algeria”. This is the anti-Semitic logic of the IDF: to Shomron, Judea and Samaria are morally and territorially equivalent to French colonies across the ocean.
 
The justice system has also already created an atmosphere in Judea and Samaria according to which Jewish blood is expendable and Palestinian Arabs can massacre Israelis. The Israeli plan to isolate and intimiate “the settlers” worked so well that most of the civilian population is unprepared to defend themselves today. Successive Israeli governments made stripping Jewish civilians of their weapons their top priorities while allowing the Palestinian Arabs to smuggle weapons.
 
The governments succeeded in portraying “the settlers” as pogromists who could only benefit humanity by disappearing. These Jews will have a choice: being massacred or abandoning their homes.
 
Will this plan succeed? We don't know.
 
What we know is that the State of Israel bravely rescued the Ethiopian Jews, but dishonourably abandoned thousands of Jews 40 kilometers away from Jerusalem. 
 
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He has just prblished a book about the Vatican and Israel titled "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.

Egypt Calls for Reparations - from Biblical Times

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 02 April 2014 11:03
Egypt -Biblical TimesMiddle-Eastern countries have a tendency to hold a grudge against Israel, whether over Israel winning the 1967 war or daring to establish independence in 1948. 
 
But, as of earlier this month, an Egyptian columnist has called for Israel to pay Cairo reparations - and this time, it's Biblical. 
 
"We want compensation for the [Ten] Plagues that were inflicted upon [us] as a result of the curses that the Jews' ancient forefathers [cast] upon our ancient forefathers, who did not deserve to pay for the mistake that Egypt's ruler at the time, Pharaoh as the Torah calls him, committed," Ahmad Al-Gamal, a writer for the Al-Yawm Al-Sabi' daily. Translations of the article were provided by The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI). 
 
"For what is written in the Torah proves that it was Pharaoh who oppressed the Children of Israel, rather than the Egyptian people. [But] they inflicted upon us the plague of locusts that didn't leave anything behind them; the plague that transformed the Nile's waters into blood, so nobody could drink of them for a long time; the plague of darkness that kept the world dark day and night; the plague of frogs; and the plague of the killing of the firstborn, namely every first offspring born to woman or beast, and so on."
 
"We want compensation for the gold, silver, copper, precious stones, fabrics, hides and lumber, and for [all] animal meat, hair, hides and wool, and for other materials that I will mention [below], when quoting the language of the Torah," he continued.  "All these are materials that the Jews used in their rituals. These are resources that cannot be found among desert wanderers unless they took them before their departure..."
 
Later in the article Al-Gamal claimed that Israel stole the materials from ancient Egypt, purely out of spite. 
 
"The stories of the Holy Scriptures state that the Israelites set off from the [Nile] valley at night and went to the Sinai Peninsula. This is known to be a desert, where there is no use for large quantities of gold, silver, precious stones, meats, oils, fabrics and the like. Therefore, it is clear that the Israelites took all these things from Egypt before they left."
 
He quoted a translated version of the Torah, allegedly to prove his point. 
 
"Chapter 25 of Exodus, on the [Israelites'] departure [from Egypt], states: 'The Lord said to Moses: Tell the Israelites to bring me an offering... These are the offerings you are to receive from them: gold, silver and bronze; blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen; goat hair;  ram skins dyed red and another type of durable leather; acacia wood; olive oil for the light; spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrant incense;  and onyx stones and other gems to be mounted on the ephod and breastpiece. Then have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them."
 
He continued by calling on the international community to calculate the modern-day value of ancient shekels for compensation. 
 
": 'The total amount of the gold from the wave offering used for all the work on the sanctuary was 29 talents and 730 shekels, according to the sanctuary shekel...'," he noted. "I call upon everyone with an interest in Torah studies to instruct us on a scientific basis what is the [precise] meaning of the word 'talent.'  How many grams is it currently worth, what was the weight of the sheqel during those days, especially as it was made out of solid pure gold and pure silver?" 
 
The events Al-Gamal describes are from the Pesach, or Passover, story of the Jews being freed from ancient Egypt. The Torah does say that the Israelites were by G-d told to take spoils from Egypt, notably during the plague of darkness. 
 
However, Al-Gamal is not the first Egyptian to demand compensation. The Jews were asked to return those spoils at a much earlier period in history.
 
In fact, the Talmud in Tractate Sanhedrin tells that the Egyptians came before Alexander the Great (approximately 330 B.C.E.) when he conquered Asia Minor and demanded that the Jews repay them for the gold and silver that the Torah says they took from Egypt during the Exodus. It recounts how Talmudic scholar Gviha ben Psisiah said to them that the same Torah that recounts how the Jews took spoils from Egypt also recounts how they worked as unpaid slaves for 210 years. Therefore, he claimed, they are owned an enormous sum of wages for that period. The Egyptian representatives asked for a three day hiatus to come up with an answer, but not finding one, they fled.
 
In the same article, Al-Gamal also calls for compensation from the Turks for invading Egypt during the Ottoman period, from the French for Napoleon's invasion in the 19th century, and the British for 72 years of occupation. 

Why Don’t Jews Go Back to Spain, to Europe? Why, Indeed

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 28 March 2014 22:14
Jews Go Back to Spain to EuropeAn alternative to Zionism.
 
Spain, which today rebuilds its ancient ghettos and synagogues, claiming back the glory of the medieval Jewish community for tourism purposes, solved its “Jewish problem” in 1492 with the help of Queen Isabella and Torquemada.
 
 
Life in a Parisian arondissement is much more comfortable than one near a shelter.
Now Spain wants to solve the "Israeli problem" by offering a passport to Sephardi Jews whose origins are Spanish, throughout the world. And most of the Jews, even in Israel, praised “the gestures of reconciliation”.
 
Reconciliation? On the contrary. What these European countries are trying to achieve is a dramatic and divisive wedge between Israel and the Jews. How? By courting them with a passport and whitewashing Europe's past through an amnesty (people do tend to forget), but most important, by offering them an alternative to Zionism.  
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It will be called "evacuation", not expulsion, to differentiate it from those of Spain in1492 and Gush Katif in 2005.
 
Many European governments now cultivate the ultimate, non violent weapon against Israel: yerida, emigration from the Jewish state. And after that, radical assimilation. The final one. Intermarriage soars. Because Jews are not superhumans, but normal people tempted by opportunities. And life in a Parisian arondissement is much more comfortable than one near a shelter. 
 
A dying Diaspora is not a threat to Israel, it is really a museum or a graveyard. But an energized Diaspora? That is a challenge and an alternative based on dilution of Jewish identity. The Europeans want urban and socially distinct Jews against the obvious and religiously distinct Israeli Jews. A new Moses Mendelssohn to stand against a skullcap-wearing Jew.
 
Approximately 13 percent of Israel's total population, between 800.000 and 1 million people, already live abroad. We are witnessing the most serious phenomenon of emigration since the Six Day War, when a joke circulated in Israel that at the airport in Tel Aviv a sign reads: "The last one leaving turns off the lights".
 
Berlin, once the world's center of an Endlosung, final solution, of the Jewish question, today proudly hosts a large Israeli community.
 
This is what Europe wants:
 
Jews out and ready to emigrate, Palestinian Arab "refugees" in, ready to return.
 
It is Europe's twisted way to atonement.
 
So Jews: beware of Spain's generosity. A passport and bank account don't count in comparison to the Bible and the Land of Your Fathers.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He has just prblished a book about the Vatican and Israel titled "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.

Israel Ranked as Best Country for Women in Middle East

Category: Reports
Created on Sunday, 16 March 2014 15:19
Muslim women in Jerusalem illustrativeIsrael is the best country in the Middle East for women's rights and freedoms, the World Economic Forum's Global Gender Gap survey concluded this week. 
 
The survey, which has been conducted since 2006, ranks 110 countries in terms of gender equality and inequality, using a variety of factors including demographic data, socioeconomic figures, and a close look at women in the legal system.
 
In 2013, Israel ranked #53 for women's rights worldwide - up two places since 2012 - but top for the Middle East overall. Middle Eastern and Muslim countries ranked lower on the list, possibly due to their lower human rights records overall.
 
Thomson-Reuters noted recently that several Middle Eastern countries - Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and others -  have a poor track record for violence against women, reproductive rights, as well as the treatment and role of women. Egypt bottomed out the list. 
 
The report noted that the Comoros Islands have the best track record for treatment of women in the Arab world; while the tiny nation did not appear on the WEF list, Oman - which ranked second for the Arab world in the Reuters poll - ranked 122nd in this week's survey. Kuwait, which ranked third on the Reuters list, stands at just 118. 
 
The survey's results were published in honor of International Women's Day, which was on March 8, and surfaces within days of reports that the Saudi Arabian royal family has been holding princesses captive against their will for several years. 
 
Israel received the Reducing the Gender Gap prize in 2013 from the European Parliament for its efforts in championing women's rights.

Judea and Samaria are Israel

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 15 March 2014 23:17
Judea - IsraelJudea and Samaria (the West Bank) belong to Israel.  These areas are Jewish areas of the State of Israel. Period. While John Kerry and others pressure Israel to return these so-called disputed territories, the reality is that the conflict in the Middle East is about the fact that the Arabs cannot accept a Jewish state.  (And even if Israel did return these territories, there wouldn’t be peace – for the Arabs want to use peace to destroy Israel piece by piece.) 
 
The world must understand that our people are called Jews because we come from Judea. The fact remains that these territories are an integral part of the State of Israel, and have always been connected to the Jewish people.
 
Ten great quotes affirming that this region belongs to Israel:
 
• Yoram Ettinger, a consultant at the Ariel Center for Policy Research: “Many world-renowned travelers, historians and archeologists of earlier centuries refer to ‘Judea and Samaria,’ while the term ‘West Bank’ was coined only 60 years ago. Jordan gave the region this name when it occupied it after Israel’s War of Independence. No nation on earth other than Britain and Pakistan recognized Jordan’s claim to Judea and Samaria. … Even the Encyclopedia Britannica, as well as official British and Ottoman records until 1950, used the term Judea and Samaria, and not the West Bank.” 
 
• The San Remo Resolution of 1920 “recognized the exclusive national Jewish rights to the Land of Israel under international law, on the strength of the historical connection of the Jewish people to the territory previously known as Palestine. The outcome of this declaration gave birth to the ‘Mandate for Palestine,’ an historical League of Nations document that laid down the Jewish legal right to settle anywhere in western Palestine, between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.” (This document clearly establishes that Israeli settlements are completely legal.)
 
• Books and history which detailed Judea and Samaria include “H. B. Tristram (The Land of Israel, 1865); Mark Twain (Innocents Abroad, 1867); R.A. MacAlister and Masterman (“Palestine Exploration Fund Quarterly”); A.P. Stanley (Sinai and Palestine, 1887); E. Robinson and E. Smith (Biblical Researches in Palestine, 1841); C.W. Van de Velde (Peise durch Syrien und Paletsinea, 1861); and Felix Bovet (Voyage en Taire Sainte, 1864).”
 
• “Israel’s days without Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria are gone and will not return.” Yitzchak Shamir, former Prime Minister of the State of Israel
 
• “Israel won the war – after they were attacked by Arab nations. In the real world, winners win – and even when the Jews win, they keep the land.” Ronn Torossian
 
• “[S]ince the territories of Judea and Samaria were never a legitimate part of any Arab state, including the Kingdom of Jordan, it is impossible to determine that Israel is an occupier in Judea and Samaria in the accepted legal definition. What’s more is that the Jewish people have a historic, legal, and physical link to Judea and Samaria.”  – Col. (res.) Daniel Reisner, former head of the international law department in the Military Advocate General’s Corps
 
• “Israel’s presence in the West Bank is not occupation, the Israeli settlements are legal under international law[.]” – The 2012 Edmund Levy Report
 
• “[We must] operate out of a sense of advancing our rights, the rights of the Jewish people as an indigenous nation in its land. The Jews are the oldest nation here, but the State of Israel rarely mentioned this. It has rarely mentioned the fact that these are territories where we have had rights from time immemorial. It has rarely mentioned international documents like the Balfour Declaration, the San Remo Declaration, the U.N. Charter, and the British Mandate as approved by the League of Nations, all of which are very relevant as they relate to our rights here. … [T]hat what we are dealing with is not occupation … It is inconceivable that the entire world will repeat the mantra about Judea and Samaria being occupied territory when from a factual standpoint there is no legal basis for this. … When Kerry claims, even before the negotiations ended, that we have no rights in territories over which negotiations are being held and where settlements are illegitimate, he is in essence adopting the Palestinian position and harming the negotiations. If the negotiations are intended to determine the fate of the settlements, then by all means. Even if you are the secretary of state, don’t prejudice the negotiations by stating beforehand that they are illegitimate.” – Alan Baker, an attorney & former Israel Ambassador to Canada
 
• “If Judea and Samaria should ever be given up to the Arabs by any imposed Mideast peace settlement, Jerusalem the capital, Tel Aviv and the Coastal Plain would be in jeopardy.” – Dani Dayan, Council of Jewish Settlers
 
• “The connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel has lasted for more than 3,500 years. Judea and Samaria, the places where Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, David and Solomon, and Isaiah and Jeremiah lived are not alien to us. This is the land of our forefathers.” – Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu
 
Indeed, what Israel should remember always is that the Jewish right to Israel is eternal.  Politics – and politicians – too shall come and go. 
 
As the Zionist leader Ze’ev Jabotinsky said many years ago: “Do not say, so what if we concede Hebron, Nablus and beyond the Jordan — this concession is not comprised of words devoid of meaning, and everyone will understand this to be the case. Do not underestimate the power of a concession! … Do not underestimate the power of a right, and don’t exaggerate the value of a building that is being built. I, too, respect the construction of a building, but woe upon us if we extract the basis of our right to exist from it.”
 
Zionism and Israel is moral and just and the Jewish right to the entire Land of Israel is eternal.
 
This article appeared in Frontpage Magazine
 
Ronn TorossianRonn Torossian, CEO of 5WPR
The author is CEO of 5WPR, 1 of the 25 largest PR Agencies in the US.

Sisi heads to Russia to cement Egypt ties

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 07:22
Quartet meetingEgyptian army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi headed to Russia accompanied by Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy on Wednesday to discuss bilateral cooperation, the army said.
 
Field Marshal Sisi, who is also Egypt's defense minister and deputy prime minister, and Fahmy would hold "2+2" talks with their Russian counterparts, Colonel Ahmed Aly, the army spokesperson said in a statement.
 
The talks would focus on "bilateral relations and aspects of cooperation between the two countries", the statement read.
 
The two men left Cairo on Wednesday for a visit that is due to last two days, Badr Abdelatty, Egypt foreign ministry spokesman told AFP.
 
The trip comes "in response to the historic visit of the Russian defence and foreign ministers to Cairo" last November, the army statement added.
 
Last November, Russia's top diplomat Sergei Lavrov and Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu visited Cairo for two days to discuss weapons sales as well as political and economic ties.
 
That visit came amid tension between Egypt and its longtime ally the United States, which has suspended some of its military aid to Cairo after Sisi ousted Islamist president Mohammad Mursi on July 3rd.
 
Egypt had close ties with Russia before then president Anwar Sadat made peace with Israel in 1979, bringing in roughly $1.3 billion in annual U.S. military aid over the subsequent decades.
 
Since Mursi's ouster, Egypt’s military backed government has been waging a deadly crackdown on his supporters that has left more than 1,400 people dead according to Amnesty international and thousands others jailed.
 
Sisi, who is hugely popular since the ouster of Mursi, is expected to stand in upcoming presidential elections, which he is likely to win by a landslide.

Iranian TV Simulates Attack on Israel, US

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 11 February 2014 10:32
US flag Iranian flagIranian state television ran a documentary showing simulated air attacks on Israel and the United States Friday, as revealed in an inflammatory clip uploaded to YouTube. 
 
The clip shows Iranian drones and missiles carrying out simulated strikes on the American aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, striking American military targets in the Persian Gulf and downing US aircraft. 
 
In a more graphic part of the documentary, drones and missiles are shown bombing Haifa, Ben-Gurion Airport, and the Dimona nuclear reactor. 
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It was aired just one day before Iran's Revolutionary Guard issued threats Saturday, warning the US that its drones and missiles could reach American vessels in the Persian Gulf.
 
Featured throughout the documentary are clips from the Islamic Republic's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, making threatening remarks against both countries in a 2011 speech. 
 
The documentary is not the first to be aired depicting military strikes on Israel. In November, clips aired on Iranian state television showing a simulated missile strike on Israel, including in Tel Aviv. 
 
The clips surface at a particularly trying time between the US and Iran. Tensions between the two countries continue to escalate, despite Iran's alleged "charm offensive" against Israel and other Western powers. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei verbally attacked the US earlier Saturday, calling it "controlling and meddlesome" and taunting that it is unable to topple the Islamic Republic. 
 
Khamenei recently threatened the United States, suggesting that the Americans “exercise self-restraint,” after Secretary of State John Kerry said that the military option was still on the table if Iran fails to live up to its part of the agreement that was signed with it in Geneva. Senior parliamentary officials in Tehran also denounced Kerry’s remarks and threatened a “crushing response” if the United States attacked Iran.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu reiterated the importance of keeping vigilant with the Islamic Republic during his weekly cabinet meeting Sunday.
 
"The international easing of the sanctions against Iran have not led Iran to moderate its international aggression; the complete opposite has occurred," he noted.  "The Iranian Foreign Minister recently met with the head of Islamic Jihad, Iran is continuing to supply terrorist organizations with deadly weapons, Iran continues to be complicit in massacres in Syria and to all this may be added the leader of Iran's crude and sharp attack against the US, alongside sending warships to the Atlantic Ocean."
 
"What is happening here is that the international community has reduced the sanctions on Iran and Iran is stepping up its international aggression," Netanyahu summarized. "This is the real result of the steps up until now." 

'Allah Gave Israel to The Jews, There's No Palestine'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 07 February 2014 12:46
KoranAllah has promised Israel to the Jews -- so says Sheikh Ahmad Adwan, a Muslim scholar living in Jordan, who declared on his Facebook page recently that "Palestine" doesn't exist.
 
Blogger Elder of Ziyon translated Arab news sources that this Saturday reported on Adwan's statements, in which he quotes the Koran saying Allah assigned Israel to the Jews until the Day of Judgement (Sura 5 Verse 21), and that Jews are the inheritors of Israel (Sura 26 Verse 59).
 
"I say to those who distort...the Koran: from where did you bring the name Palestine, you liars, you accursed, when Allah has already named it 'The Holy Land' and bequeathed it to the Children of Israel until the Day of Judgment," argued Adwan. "There is no such thing as 'Palestine' in the Koran."
 
"Your demand for the Land of Israel is a falsehood and it constitutes an attack on the Koran, on the Jews and their land. Therefore you won’t succeed, and Allah will fail you and humiliate you, because Allah is the one who will protect them (i.e. the Jews)," warns Adwan.
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The sheikh had more harsh words for the "Palestinians," calling them "the killers of children, the elderly and women" in using them as human shields in order to falsely accuse the Jews of targeting them. He reports having seen the same tactic used by "Palestinians" against the Jordanian army in the 1970s.
 
"This is their habit and custom, their viciousness, their having hearts of stones towards their children, and their lying to public opinion, in order to get its support," declared Adwan.
 
Adwan has previously said his support for the Jewish people "comes from my acknowledgment of their sovereignty on their land and my belief in the Koran, which told us and emphasized this in many places, like His (Allah’s) saying ”Oh People (i.e the Children of Israel), enter the Holy Land which Allah has assigned unto you'" (Sura 5, Verse 21).
 
The Jews are a peaceful people according to Adwan, who says "if they are attacked, they defend themselves while causing as little damage to the attackers as possible. It is an honor for them that Allah has chosen them over the worlds – meaning over the people and the Jinns (spiritual creatures) until the Day of Judgment. ...When Allah chose them, He didn’t do so out of politeness, and He wasn’t unjust other peoples, it is just that they (the Jews) deserved this.”
 
Video (mostly in Hebrew) from Orot TV shows Adwan's 2012 visit to Tzfat, where he met with the city's Chief Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu and expressed his support for Israel:

Israel Among Ten Most Powerful Nations In World

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 26 January 2014 17:01
Israel flagIsrael, the tiny nation that defied history in coming back to life after 2,000 years of exile, is among the top 10 most powerful nations in the world according to a recent research study.
 
Market Business News recently reported on the 2012 National Power Index (NPI), released by the Foundation for National Security Research (FNSR), a New Delhi-based think tank. The study is a comprehensively revised version of the previous indexes published in India's National Security Annual Review (INSAR) since 2002.
 
According to the research, Israel achieved a 32.19 NPI ranking, placing it tenth on the list of the world's most powerful countries.
 
The NPI is a quantification of a nation's power, meaning its ability to influence global events. The ranking is based on a composite of indexes of statistical analysis in terms of economy, military, diplomacy, technology and population. Each factor has a certain weight, and the composite index includes a detailed analysis of individual components.
 
The research appraises Israel as a country of 8 million, with a GDP of $272.7 billion and 176,500 active military personnel.
 
Israel stands out in military capability where it is ranked 6th in the world, and technological capability where it ranks 4th. Its capabilities ranked 25 in economy, 17 in population and 19 in foreign affairs.
 
The index study notes that Israel has the strongest military in the Middle East, and is among the world's leaders in technology and science. It also notes that Israel ranks 15 on the UN development index, illustrating the high quality of life in the Jewish state.
 
Unsurprisingly, the United States headed the list of most powerful nations, ranking in at 77.77 on the NPI. It was followed by China (58.66) and Russia (43.36). The remaining nations on the list were France, Japan, the UK, Germany, India and Canada in that order.
 
A map by Maps of World displays the 10 leading powers in highlighted colors, including tiny Israel among its massive fellow powerful nations.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu encouraged investment in Israel this week at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, touting Israel's innovation in developing "more conceptual products per capita than any nation on earth."

A One-way Ticket to the Zero-State Solution

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 25 January 2014 16:35
israel-two-stateA "boycott" is comparatively harmless to the Zero-State Solution.
 
Earlier this month, Justice Minister Tzipi Livni stated that “the boycott is moving and advancing uniformly and exponentially.”  
Exactly to her point, Defense Minister Ya’alon responded that if security compromises would lead to “rockets from Nablus, Ramallah and Jenin onto Ben Gurion Airport, then I would rather have a European boycott” on Israel.  
 
Unable to intellectually or rationally respond to Ya’alon, Livni resorted to sophistry and made an even more intellectually specious statement:  “In the context of priorities, I prefer the Galilee, Kiryat Shemona, Tiberias and the Negev over the isolated settlements outside the ‘settlement blocs.’”   
 
What Livni doesn’t understand, or doesn’t want to understand, is that without all, I repeat ALL, the heroic Jewish settlers of Judea and Samaria, there will be no Negev, no Galilee.  There will be no Israel, period. 
 
But, as a prefatory note, Livni omitted Sderot and Ashkelon from the fanciful list of Israeli cities that she considers her “priorities.”   In her messianic bubble, Livni can't process the fact that these Israeli cities have been rocketed solely because of her suicidal failed peace 'policies.'  If anything, for Livni, the Gaza rockets only serve to further convince her of the "end-of-days" messianic and delusional salvation of the "Peace Process." 
 
A step-by-step analysis:
#1:  What DM Ya’alon is really saying is: No Judea and Samaria means no Tel Aviv, means no Israel.  So, a "boycott" is comparatively harmless to the Zero-State Solution.
 
From the 'West Bank', Palestinian terrorist rockets and anti-tank missiles will fall in the densely-populated Tel Aviv-Sharon Plain which holds 70% of Israel’s population, unlike sparsely populated Israeli areas around Gaza.  The practical difference is between rockets falling in Montana versus New York City.  A rocket from Montana, like Gaza, will rarely hit anything.  But, a rocket into the Israeli coastal plain is bound to kill somebody or blow something important up.
Hence, Israel will have no choice but to immediately reinvade the very areas Livni is screaming to retreat from.  An Israeli army reinvading the 'West Bank' State after an Israeli 'West Bank' retreat will have to fight topographically uphill against a highly dispersed Palestinian Arab force commingled with innocent Palestinian Arab civilians. These armed Palestinian Arabs will be armed with thousands of small, easily smuggle-able 5k range anti-tank missiles.  The highly-trained terrorists will be barricaded in highly-fortified compounds that have already been pre-built  and are ready for immediate occupancy. 
 
People in Israel often joke and scoff about the “empty Palestinian mansions” of Judea and Samaria.  Any objective observer would realize that those buildings aren’t “empty millionaire mansions,” but steel-rebar-reinforced line-of-sight anti-tank battle positions waiting to be immediately occupied by anti-tank-armed Palestinian Arab troops the second Israeli troops leave. 
And, if Livni screams about the EU boycott now, just imagine the EU boycott, nay, the UN world total boycott, after a “retreat-rocket-and-reinvade” scenario. It would be exponentially worse.  And does anyone think Obama is going to let Israel waltz back into the area after he did everything in the world to evict Israel from it in the first place?  And, anybody who thinks President Obama will issue a UN veto against total Israeli boycott with a Chapter VII chaser in an Israel-West Bank "re-invasion" scenario should be admitted to an insane asylum for peace cultists. STAT.
 
And as for the Israeli "economy" Livni  claims she's worried about, a single ball-bearing war-headed Katyusha landing in Ben Gurion Airport destroying a parked and fueled 747 will paralyze the very “exports” to Europe Livni is so worried will be boycotted in the first place.  Insurance will be revoked for any and all Israeli-bound planes.   Israeli export-import-commerce will cease, tourism will freeze.  One katyusha rocket into Ben Gurion Airport, and the Israeli economy would be crippled.   Israel would lose more money in one day after a ball-bearing Katyusha attack on Ben Gurion than any EU boycott would exact in one year.
 
#2: Livni knows Israel is not a country in Europe or North America, and its neighbors want to annihilate it. 
 
Maybe Livni didn’t hear that Egypt just labeled Hamas a “terrorist” organization.  The Arab Egypt didn’t label Hamas a “terrorist” organization because they murdered Israelis.  Egypt made the designation because they murdered Egyptians on behalf of Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood.  If Hamas is murdering Egyptians by the dozens, if given half-a-chance, they will murder thousands of Israelis.  Does Livni want to repeat her “Gaza retreat" and bring Iranian-Hamas rockets into Judea and Samaria so they can murder Tel Aviv's Jews?
 
To round out this point, Abbas has already lost control over Judea and Samaria.  Everybody knows Abbas is powerless, except for Livni.  But that’s not really true.  Livni isn’t a moron, she is just suicidal.  Livni really knows Abbas is powerless, but she needs him to be the fig-leaf for her false “peace.”  In signing any “peace” agreement, Abbas knows he will be signing his own death warrant. 
Livni isn’t just buying the same “Peace” rug for the 5th time from Abbas.  Livni is “buying” a “Peace” rug from Abbas when she knows Abbas doesn’t even own the rug.  The moment Israel leaves Judea and Samaria, Livni knows Hamas will murder Abbas.  You see, Livni and the entire Israeli “Peace” camp needs Abbas to engineer a fraud on the Israeli people.  
 
Livni and her fellow Two-Staters very well know that soon after the end-of-day's “Peace,” Iran will be the masters of the area overlooking Tel Aviv and Ben Gurion Airport. 
 
 
#3 An elbow is also “isolated” from one’s "strategic" hand, but without your "isolated" elbow, you can’t use your "strategic" hand.
 
Livni is employing the classic strategy of the messianic Israel left, divide and conquer.   Unfortunately, Jews often like self-dividing themselves.  (Secular v. Haredi, Ashkenazi v. Sephardi, etc.)  Livni knows the “isolated” settlements are an integral part of the entire Judea and Samaria settlement structure.  By destroying the “isolated” settlements, Livni knows she will destroy all the settlements including the "strategic" ones.   Many of the “isolated” settlements are really “connecting” settlements to the "strategic" settlements.  This is because with the “isolated” connecting “elbow” settlements evacuated, it will be impossible to get to the “strategic” “hand” settlements.
 
This can hardly be an ignorant or naive position of Livni's. Livni comes from a long line of Israeli and Jewish leaders who believed that they knew whether the Jewish people should live or die better than the people themselves.  Livni has a messianic-complex that is much worse than the Jewish leaders of the Holocaust who “decided” for their flocks and who then led the people to their slaughter. In the Holocaust, Jewish leaders didn't have the IDF.
 
#4  The "Boycott" demands are the total annihilation of Israel
 
There is no true "end" to the "BDS" demands.  Is it just Judea and Samaria?  How about after Jerusalem is divided?  And we can't forget all the millions of "refugees" who want to move into Tel Aviv.  When exactly will the boycott stop?  Will the EU Jew-haters and the Jew-hating Jews who first engineered the boycott stop their boycott if Israel cedes all of Judea and Samaria and divides Jerusalem? 
 
 No, they'll never stop.  In fact, by rewarding the Jew-haters with Israeli concessions, Livni is exponentially encouraging and empowering them to never stop until there is no Israel.  To these Jew-haters, any Israel is too much Israel, and a violation of Palestinian rights.
 
So in conclusion, from stem to stern, Livni's "boycott" threat is nothing less than an unmistakable sign that Livni and her Peace cultists are turning Tel Aviv into a big shtetl of Auschwitz.  If Livni's "boycott" threats work and Israel caves, Israelis should prepare for the Zero-State Solution. 
 
Livni's "Green Line, now" versus "EU Boycott, now" is a knowingly false choice.  It's really "Green Line, now, with UN total Boycott and Chapter VII authorization later" versus "EU Boycott, now."  This is because Israel's future re-invasion of the 'West Bank' will bring a UN boycott and Chapter VII authorization against Israel.  
 
 If Livni's "Boycott" blackmail “thinking” cows Israel now, the Zero-State Solution will be coming sooner rather than later.
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who writes on security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com

How Israel Will Save the Sunnis From Iran

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Wednesday, 22 January 2014 07:29
isarabiaFrom day one of Obama's first term in 2008 (actually even before), Obama was a covert ally of Iran, and an enemy of Saudi Arabia.  Since early 2012, a major theme of mine has been to expose Obama's crypto-alliance with Iran and crypto-enmity towards Saudi Arabia.  A selection of my articles is below:
 
 
 
 
In January 2012, these articles would have been considered lunatic-fringe.
 
Now, in January 2014, some notable Middle East savants have finally begun to grasp what was all along the painfully obvious fact of Obama's affinity for Iran.  The renowned Islamic Middle East scholar, Faoud Ajami, in a Wall Street Journal article entitled "Obama and the Sunni-Shiite War, The U.S. tilt to Iran is upsetting allies and disrupting the Middle East" recently wrote that
 
"It was the practice of so many years that Arabs deployed what pressure they could exert on the United States on behalf of the Palestinians. No longer. It is the struggle for Syria, and the Iranian bid for primacy in the Fertile Crescent, that engage the Arabs. This ‘shuttle diplomacy’ of our secretary of state, if anything, is evidence of the retreat of American power.
 
"President Obama and his foreign policy lieutenants are given to the assertion that they don't want the U.S. caught in the middle of other peoples' wars. But by deeds of commission and omission, the U.S. is caught up in a deadly sectarian struggle between Shiite Iran and its ‘sister republics’ in the Arab world on one side, and the Sunni order of Arab power on the other. Mastery of the arcane details of the Shiite-Sunni schism may not be an American specialty, but over the last two years this president and his advisers have placed the U.S. on the side of Iran and its Arab satraps in Lebanon and, now, Iraq."
 
My only quibble with Mr. Ajami's analysis is that I would have used "past five years, from before the first day of Obama's regime," instead of "past two years;" the word "puppet" instead of "satrap;" and the words "have enabled the Iranian-Shiite-axis to genocidally massacre hundreds of thousands of Sunnis" instead of "have placed."
 
Now, Obama's unalloyed fealty to Iran's Middle East hegemony and total rejection of Saudi Arabia is overt for the entire world to see.  President Obama has polar-inverted 70 years of United States' alliances from Saudi-ally to Saudi-enemy; from Iranian-enemy to Iranian-ally.  Obama unilaterally inverted America's alliances without congressional hearings and loyalty to America's strategic best interests.
 
In the Obama-world view the Saudis are dead-meat and they know it.   The only thing that will save the moderate Sunni world from Iran is a moderate Sunni alliance with Israel.  This alliance hopefully will be named MEATO, Middle East Alliance Treaty Organization.
 
Why has Obama turned America's 70 year history of alliances topsy-turvy, upside-down and backwards?  Wasn't Obama, the outreaching savant of the Islamic world, supposed to make the Arab world love the USA?  With Obama at the helm, the once-secure Middle East borders have melted to become one big revolution wrapped in a civil war tied into a sectarian massacre.
 
“From Iran to Lebanon, there are no borders anymore,” said Walid Jumblatt, the leader of Lebanon’s minority Druze community. “Officially, they are still there, but will they be a few years from now? If there is more dislocation, the whole of the Middle East will crumble."  Why has the relatively stable "British" Middle East become one big killing zone: ObamaWorld?
 
It seems that Obama does not dream of his father, but actually of his grandfather.  Obama is truly his grandfather's grandson, not his father's son.  For, while most people can trace their family's religious roots back many generations, Obama can only trace his Islamic roots back two generations; or, in fact, just one and a half generations to his Kenyan paternal grandfather. 
 
 
"Hussein Onyango Obama:
 
Barack Obama's paternal grandfather (c. 1895–1979). (One source gives 1870–1975 as his dates of birth and death, possibly based on his tombstone in his home village,[63] Barack Obama relates finding in 1988 a British document based on a 1928 ordinance recording his grandfather as 35 years old. The date of the document was estimated to be about 1930, which would mean that his grandfather had been born around 1895.) Onyango was the fifth son of his mother, Nyaoke, who was the first of the five wives of his father, Obama.[65] Barack Obama relates how his step-grandmother Granny Sarah (Sarah Onyango Obama) describes his grandfather: ‘Even from the time that he was a boy, your grandfather Onyango was strange...he could not sit still.’  As a young man, he learned to speak, read and write in English.
 
"Onyango worked as a mission cook and as a local herbalist. He joined the King's African Rifles during World War I.
 
"In 1949, Onyango spent at least 6 months in Kamiti Prison. He was likely tried in a magistrates' court on charges of political sedition or membership of a banned organization, but the records do not survive, because all such documentation was routinely destroyed after six years in British colonies. He was tortured to extract information about the growing insurgency. In his memoir, Obama recounted family descriptions of his grandfather's shocking physical state when released from prison:
 
"‘When he returned to Alego he was very thin and dirty. He had difficulty walking, and his head was full of lice.’ For some time, he was too traumatized to speak about his experiences. His wife told his grandson Obama: ‘From that day on, I saw that he was now an old man.’
 
"Onyango was permanently scarred, remaining in pain and requiring assistance in moving until his death. Although previously he had worked closely with British colonists, his torture left Onyango bitterly anti-British.
 
"According to his third wife, Sarah, Onyango had first converted from tribal religion to Roman Catholicism. After later converting to Islam, he took the name Hussein. She said that he passed on the name to his children, not the religion. The Luo are given names related to the circumstances of their birth, and Onyango means ‘born in the early morning.’" 
 
Onyango, Obama's "bitterly anti-British" grandfather only converted from colonially imposed-Roman Catholicism to Islam relatively late in his life after Kamiti Prison, as an ultimate rejection of the otherwise British colonial occupational Catholicism of his native Kenya, and as an appeal to Islam's "goal of religious and moral perfection,"  writes Sally H. Jacobs in "The Bold and Reckless Life of President Obama's Father, The Other Barack" 2011.
 
Does anyone think that Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. forgot or has forgiven Britain for torturing his grandfather who first started, adopted, and bore the Islamic "Hussein" namesake of which Obama is so proud? Does anyone think President Obama has forgotten that his immediate paternal grandfather and namesake was tortured by British colonialists for "6 months" in Kamiti Prison to extract information from him and came out, as President Obama personally retells, "thin and dirty" and "with hair full of lice"?   
 
Hence, in Iran, Obama sees his chance to avenge his grandfather's British colonial degradation, and to redeem his grandfather's idealized religious Islamic horse to unify the Middle East under an Iranian yoke, and eradicate any and all vestiges of British colonialism, and the divisions it spawned.  And at the core, Obama wants to annihilate both the House of Saud and the State of Israel, which Obama sees as the ultimate in British Middle Eastern colonial corruption, evil, and Islamic division which tortured his grandfather.  
 
So, Obama doesn't just despise Jews; Obama abhors everything Britain ever created, most particularly the House of Saud and Israel.  Obama wants an undivided United Islamic States of Iran and the only obstacle in his way to an anti-British Middle East is Saudi Arabia.  The straightest, fastest road to such an Islamic super-power is anointing Iran as its Hegemon. 
 
In this ObamaWorld, for the next 3 years, now stripped of its US military protection, Saudi Arabia has only one card left to play: Israel.
 
Illustrating this point is the following: On May 19, 2011, Obama gave a famous "victory lap" speech at the State Department congratulating himself for handing Iraq to an Iranian puppet, deposing Egyptian ally Mubarak, and betraying Qaddafi who had given up his nukes, thereby setting North Africa into the flames that still burn bright. Whom do you think Obama was referring to in his famous State Department speech when he made this conclusory statement:  "Prosperity also requires tearing down walls that stand in the way of progress -– the corruption of elites who steal from their people; the red tape that stops an idea from becoming a business; the patronage that distributes wealth based on tribe or sect." 
 
Who exactly is Obama asserting are the "elites who steal from their people" and the "patronage that distributes wealth based on tribe or sect"?  Obama had one target: Saudi Arabia.
 
And for Israel, Obama's obsequious fealty to Iran is as great a concern as it is for Saudi Arabia.  Once Iran devours the Saudi oil reserves, nothing will stop it from annihilating Israel.  Therefore, Israel and Saudi Arabia’s strategic security interests are not only parallel; they are perfectly, exactly aligned to defeat both Obama and Iran.  For, if Obama succeeds in erecting the Iranian-Persian-nuclear-Hegemon, the Sunni kings and Israel will be wiped out.  And they know it.
 
When Israel complains that if it is stripped of the Jordan Valley, the Iranian-proxy Hamas will take over, Obama doesn’t consider this a "problem."  To him, this is the perfect solution and propitious result.  So, Israel's arguing that the "West bank will turn into a Hamastan" spurs Obama to try even harder to implement it.  
 
The Saudis and Jordanians know that if Israel retreats, an Iranian Hamas-puppet West Bank will existentially threaten them more than it does Israel.  How can Kerry think he's mending Saudi fences broken by Obama's allowing Iran to be a nuclear-weapons state, by asking for their help to create a new Iranian-enemy-of-the-Saudis state in the "West Bank"?
 
The Saudis and their Gulf emirates need only to look back to the Palestinian Arab betrayal of Kuwait, when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1991, to understand the depths of Palestinian Arab treachery.  They don't have to reach into the history of the January 3, 1919 Chaim Weitzmann-Faisal agreements to remember that Chaim Weitzmann at the time reported that Emir Faisal was "contemptuous of the Palestinian Arabs whom he doesn't even regard as Arabs."
 
In Iraq, to the Saudi's immediate contiguous north, Obama directly, omnipotently empowered another Iranian puppet, Al-Maliki, as Iran's new Shiite "Satrap" of Iraq.  To make matters infinitely worse for the Saudis, Iran's al-Maliki has just dictated that Muslims must now pray to Karbala, the Shiite shrine, and not Mecca, the Sunni shrine.  
 
How did President Obama react to this clear Iranian dictat to al-Maliki to set the entire Islamic world into flames by changing Islamic prayer direction?  Obama rewarded the Iranian-puppet Al-Maliki with a bunch of "fast-tracked" hellfire missiles and drones so Al-Maliki can massacre the rebellious Iraqi Sunnis even more effectively than Iran's other murderous puppet Assad can kill Sunnis with barrel-bombs.
 
Hence, the Saudis have realized that  either they ally themselves with the Israelis, or the Obama-fully-backed Iran will take over and wipe out the Saudis, converting every last Sunni to a Shiite.  Israel has realized that Obama isn't bombing Iran, but is, in actuality, nuclear-arming Iran.  Either the Israelis work with the Saudis or there will be a nuclear-Iran protected by Obama that will take over all the Persian Gulf's oil assets in "hostile takeovers" sanctioned by "withdrawing from the Middle East" Obama. 
 
Which brings us to the only remaining possible solution: Pax Israelica.  The only place in the Middle East where there is peace and security is Israel.  Do the Palestinian Arabs of Judea and Samaria want a repeat of the Hamas tyranny of Gaza or the Iranian butchery of Syria?  Does King Abdullah of Jordan want an Iranian-terrorist state on its western border?  Everything Kerry/Obama is proposing is a one-way ticket to inserting an Iranian-terrorist-state in the "West Bank" where there is now absolute quiet.  And, the Sunni Arabs will soon come to realize that Israel is not the source of instability and brutality, but the rock of stability and their one, and only safety-net.
 
For now the Sunni Arabs have come to understand that it is only Israel's order of battle that prevents Iran (with what would be Obama's blessing) from wiping away all the borders colonial Britain created and creating one hegemonic Iranian Shiite Imamate.  To the Sunni Arabs, Israel is now, and will always be, the savior of the Sunnis, not their enemy.
 
For Israel, it must realize "the friend of my friend is my friend."  In specific, if the Saudis are Israel's friend, then the Saudi-backed Syrian rebels are also Israel's friend.  For, if the topologic link between Iran-Iraq-Syria-Lebanon is not broken at Syria, it will never be broken.  And the consequence of Iran's unbroken topological path to the Mediterranean is an existential threat to both Saudi Arabia and Israel. 
 
For, if the Saudi-backed Syrian rebels break Assad, and gain Syria, there will form the very beginnings of MEATO, Middle East Alliance Treaty Organization.  MEATO will represent an alliance of moderate Sunni Arabs with Israel that could change history for the better and defeat the Iranian cancer.  These Arabs will not "moderate" because they want to, but because they will have to learn to live and respect a Jewish Israel.  Otherwise, they will be devoured by a Darwinist Islamism that is constantly consuming itself into greater terror and violence.
 
An Israel strong and secure without a terrorist Palestinian Arab state could truly fertilize the Sunni Arab Fertile Crescent with the military backbone, strength and will to defeat the Persian reign of violence and terror at its root.  A "West Bank" Palestinian Arab state will insure another Obama-enabled Iranian victory that will wipe out Israel, and the Sunni faith along with it.
 
For more information, please visit www.marklangfan.com 
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who writes on security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com

Israel in Twilight

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 21 January 2014 20:21
TwilightIsrael's predicament today is the work of two mythical generals turned prime ministers who got halfway into a program and died leaving behind a mess that no one knows how to clean up.
 
Obituaries rarely have twist endings and the obituaries of famous people are as predictable as the rain. The obituaries for Ariel Sharon, a man who died long ago, are falling now like distant rain.
 
The media left invokes the ghosts of Sabra and Shatila, a bout of inter-Arab violence that he had as much to do with as Jimmy Carter did with September 11, and describes him as a controversial figure. The right and the press releases from politicians claim he embodied all the qualities of Israel and was a mythical figure whose attributes were larger than life.
 
Sharon was certainly a larger than life figure because, like so many Israeli generals turned politicians, he built that myth. The generals of every country are also politicians. Those who cannot hack it as politicians, usually stay colonels. Israel's most famous generals invented their own reputations and made themselves into men of myth. Some were talented fighters, none were good leaders.
 
Israel's predicament today is the work of two mythical generals turned prime ministers who got halfway into a program and died leaving behind a mess that no one knows how to clean up.
 
Rabin and Sharon began ambitious ventures and then died early on. They used forceful tactics, steamrolling the opposition, bribing anyone who could be bribed and then left the project in the hands of their creepy and inept successors; Peres and Olmert.
 
Rabin's peace process destroyed Israel's national security and revitalized terrorism as a force in political affairs in Israel and around the world. It was the single worst decision in the short history of the modern State of Israel. To find a worse decision by an Israeli leader, it would be necessary to reach back to the Hasmonean kingdoms thousands of years ago.
 
It is not inconceivable that Rabin might have turned away from the peace process, especially as the public began to realize what a disaster it was. Rabin had never been especially enthusiastic about the idea, it had been thrust on him by the fringe left and he had grasped it as a hedge against the political oblivion of a Labor Party that had lost credibility in a new multicultural Israel no longer dominated by an elite that aspired to a Socialist myth of cooperatives and political bureaucracies.
 
That door was shut permanently by Rabin's death under mysterious circumstances at the hands of a gunman who was repeatedly urged to kill him by an informant working for the security services and who should never have been able to get within close range of the most protected man in Israel in a country whose security is second to none.
 
Conspiracy theories abound, but conspiracy theories do not bring back the dead.  
 
Rabin became the martyr of the peace process and his death is commemorated annually and intertwined with the commitment to peace. Schoolchildren are brought to hear about Rabin's legacy and the importance of following in his footsteps. Generations of Israeli youth were sacrificed to the peace process, their blood shed in the name of peace, until Israelis grew tired of the nightmare.
 
Sharon's rise to power was made possible by the disaster that Rabin created. Israelis had attempted to make earlier course corrections by voting for Netanyahu over Peres. But Netanyahu, then as now, proved not to have the backbone to change course and stop the terrorism. And so, after Barak's disastrous retreat from Lebanon, Sharon's hour came.
 
There had only been and still are only two politically acceptable options in Israel for dealing with terrorism; either negotiated appeasement or holding the line. The latter meant making occasional forays after a terrorist atrocity into the territories under Palestinian Authority control, arresting a few wanted terrorists and then pulling back, and hoping the public would be satisfied.
 
Voters expected Sharon to go further. And he did.
 
After the Passover Massacre in 2002, Sharon issued a brief statement in which he dropped one phrase. "As we speak, the IDF is already inside the 'Mukta'a' (Arafat's compound) in Ramallah." Israeli forces took the compound, a previously unprecedented act, and arrested Marwan Barghouti, the terrorist leader behind much of the violence, who has yet to be released despite international protests.
 
In a speech to the Knesset, Sharon said, "Our dead lie in a long row: women and children, young and old. And we stand facing them, facing the vacuum created by their murders, and we are speechless."
 
"The murderous gangs have a leader, a purpose, and a directing hand. They have one mission: to chase us out of here, from everywhere — from our home in Elon Moreh and from the supermarket in Jerusalem, from the cafe in Tel Aviv and from the restaurant in Haifa, from the synagogue in Netzarim — where the murderers slaughtered... worshippers, walking in their prayer shawls to morning prayers — and from the Seder table in Netanya."
 
"And there is one dispatcher: Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasir Arafat."
 
But it would not be Arafat who would chase Israeli Jews out of the synagogue in Netzarim. Sharon would do that. All that would be left for Arafat's gangs would be to burn down the synagogue after its worshipers were gone.
 
Of the two options, negotiating or holding the line, Sharon had decided to choose a third option.
 
Few commanders like to do the predictable thing and Israeli generals have a weakness for seeking an impossible alternative and then making it work. Sometimes they succeed, other times they fail.
 
Sharon aspired to cut the Gordian Knot of negotiations and terrorism by putting as much space, real or virtual, as possible between the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli population. There were to be no more negotiations and no more fruitless raids. Arafat could have the land he already controlled and would be kept out of the rest. It was a retreat meant as a consolidation.
 
The strategy was not an original one. The 'separation wall' that every trendy lefty denounces was begun by Rabin. The unilateral withdrawal from Gaza and the ethnic cleansing of the Jews living there wrapped up the strategy. But it was a bad strategy from the start.
 
Separation worked and it didn't. Israeli casualties dropped sharply since 2002. The days of the constant urban suicide bombing have receded into history. Israeli parents still worry, but the atmosphere isn't what it was a decade ago.  Terrorist attacks are less successful than before and many Israelis are once again able to convince themselves that a West Bank withdrawal will stop putting soldiers and settlers at risk and end the terrorism threat once and for all.
 
Sharon, like Rabin, left behind an unfinished strategy, but his was the more tangled one. If Rabin was making a terrible mistake, many wonder whether Sharon had a bigger plan than mere separation. Did he intend for the Hamas takeover to happen all along to bring down the Palestinian Authority and end the farce of empty negotiations? Did he have an endgame that would have shifted the strategic landscape?.
 
Death has closed the door on these questions as firmly as it did on Rabin's second thoughts.
 
After Sharon, the country has floundered with no meaningful strategy except the old one of holding a shrinking line. The separation wall helped keep out suicide bombers, but not rockets and for the first time in a long time, rockets struck Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
 
Netanyahu has operated clumsily in the strategic twilight zone. On economic issues, he is a polished player, but his only strategic vision is to stick to the same defensive pathway, negotiating defensively and fighting defensively.
 
Israel's conservatives are overrun with the princes and princesses, the children and grandchildren of great men and women who are themselves diffident or destructive, who have no vision, but have grown up expecting to have political power handed to them. Sharon's victory was a symptom of the inability of that generation to present credible leaders either from the right or the left.
 
The country's current predicament was shaped by two men, one born in 1922 and the other in 1928; both products of the old left and of the military establishment. The baby boomer new left has done its damage, but there has been little in the way of leadership from that generation. Now that generation has grown old, it has done a decent job of modernizing and privatizing Israel, but it has no answers to its strategic questions. It can't even begin to formulate the questions.
 
The Netanyahus and Baraks, the Israeli leaders who were born in the forties, are now in their sixties, and it isn't likely that they will dominate Israel into their seventies and eighties the way that Sharon, Rabin and Peres did. Their successors, men like Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett, were born in the sixties and seventies and they are now coming into their own.
 
It will be up to Generation X to solve Israel's strategic problem. That is assuming that they ever get the chance.
 
Rabin's strategy put Israel on the path to oblivion. Sharon's strategy did little more than continue the process of buying time. Instead of a grand vision, he settled for a useless oral agreement with the US that Obama disavowed, another round of expulsions and no plan for fighting the growing threat of the terrorist states on the other side of the shifting border.
 
Strength is not a substitute for vision. A vision may need strong men to carry it out, but elevating strong men with no vision is a recipe for disaster. The military mind often considers the best answer for the moment and has a weakness for conventional wisdom and the advice of experts.
 
Israel fell into the trap of allowing military men and security figures to make too many decisions that
should have been made by popular consensus and the results were disastrous. And in their absence it has failed to develop leaders, instead allowing their place to be taken by generals and the post-ideological descendants of ideological figures.
 
The peace process is a gaping wound that Israel is unable to close. The public has no meaningful representation, instead an incestuous gang of quarreling post-ideological politicians who pretend to stand for the right or the left or for pragmatic solutions, for the Russians and the Haredim, for the Sefardim and for the working people, are squandering the time that the country is already short on for their own careers and their own wealth.
 
Israel has military experts and economic experts and both groups are talented and capable, but they lack the combination of vision and determination that makes for leadership. There are too many Netanyahus, smart and competent men, who know what needs to be done and lack the determination to do it, and there are too many Sharons, who have the strength and determination, but not the wisdom.
 
This is not an usual state of affairs in human history, but Israel cannot afford to exist in twilight, going along with the flow until something changes. If it were in a peaceful part of the world, if its people were not murderously hated by billions, if it were not constantly at war, it could move through an undistinguished prosperity without worry or doubt; but that is not its fate.
 
The Jewish State cannot persist in twilight. It will either fall into the darkness of an old night or step into the light of a new day.
 
Daniel GreenfieldDaniel Greenfield
The writer is a popular New York City based freelance commentator and a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He blogs at sultanknish.blogspot.com

Israel: The World's First Modern Indigenous State

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 21 January 2014 14:36
IsraelIsrael is the world's first modern indigenous state. Those who are arguing for Palestinian “indigenous rights” are usually those who have little grasp of the history, and no understanding of the truth behind indigenous rights.
 
I am Métis from the Paddle Prairie Metis settlement in Northern Alberta Canada.  I founded Canadians For Accountability, a native rights advocacy group, and I am an organizer and participant in the Idle No More movement in Calgary. I am a founding member of an Israeli advocacy group called Calgary United with Israel. And I am a Zionist.
 
Indigenous status
To begin, let us acknowledge that there is no rule that a land can have only one indigenous people; it is not a zero sum game in which one group must be considered indigenous so that therefore another is not. However, there is a very clear guideline to being an indigenous people. It is somewhat complex but can be boiled down to the checklist below, as developed by anthropologist José R. Martínez-Cobo (former special rapporteur of the Sub-commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities for the United Nations).
 
This list was developed because indigenous rights are beginning to be respected across the planet. This recognition is incredibly important, so we as indigenous people cannot allow non-indigenous people to make false claims, which ultimately would harm our own rights.
 
Israel is the world’s first modern indigenous state: the creation and declaration of the sovereign nation of Israel marks the first time in history that an indigenous people has managed to regain control of its ancestral lands and build a nation state. As such, this is incredibly important for indigenous people both to recognise and to support as a great example for our peoples to emulate.
 
The actual working definition of “indigenous people,” (not the Wikipedia version, nor Merriam Webster, both more suited to plants and animals) for purposes of this essay is that developed by aforementioned anthropologist José R. Martínez-Cobo. With this as my foundation, I will detail why Jews are indigenous to Israel, and why Palestinians are not.
 
Martinez-Cobo’s research suggests that indigenous communities, peoples and nations are those which, having a historical continuity with pre-invasion and pre-colonial societies that developed on their territories, consider themselves distinct from other sectors of the societies now prevailing on those territories, or parts of them. They form at present non-dominant sectors of society and are determined to preserve, develop and transmit to future generations their ancestral territories, and their ethnic identity, as the basis of their continued existence as peoples, in accordance with their own cultural patterns, social institutions and legal system.
 
This historical continuity may consist of the continuation, for an extended period reaching into the present of one or more of the following factors:
 
Occupation of ancestral lands, or at least of part of them
 
Common ancestry with the original occupants of these lands
 
Culture in general, or in specific manifestations (such as religion, living under a tribal system, membership of an indigenous community, dress, means of livelihood, lifestyle, etc.)
 
Language (whether used as the only language, as mother-tongue, as the habitual means of communication at home or in the family, or as the main, preferred, habitual, general or normal language)
 
Residence in certain parts of the country, or in certain regions of the world
 
Religion that places importance on spiritual ties to the ancestral lands
 
Blood quantum – that is, the amount of blood you carry of a specific people to identify as that people. The concept was developed by colonialists in order to eventually breed out native peoples.
 
Let us now look quickly at the Jews. How do they fit this definition?
 
Their lands were occupied, first by the Romans, then by the Arabs in the seventh century.
 
They share common ancestry with previous occupants as determined by several genetic studies.
 
Their culture can be traced directly to the Levant, where it developed into what is now known as “Jewish culture.” While different Jewish communities have slightly different traditions, they all share the same root culture, and it remains unchanged. They have resurrected their traditional language, and while many still speak Yiddish and Ladino, Hebrew has become the primary language again.
 
They have spiritual ties to the land, which plays a large role in their traditions as a people.
 
Despite all the arguments about “European” Jews, they in fact meet all the criteria set forth by Martínez-Cobo. Even though Israel is the first modern indigenous state, it still has lands that are occupied by foreigners in Judea and Samaria. Those are ancestral lands and, many feel that they should be returned to the indigenous peoples for self-determination.
 
Now, for the flip side.
Palestinians have what are called “ rights of longstanding presence;” and although these are legitimate rights, they do not trump indigenous rights. The very nature of “longstanding presence” means that although they lived somewhere a long time, they do not have the right to occupy indigenous peoples and control them.
 
The argument that Palestinians are indigenous is incorrect for several reasons.
 
Approximately 50% percent of Palestinian Arabs can track their ancestors back farther than their great-grandparents. Many are descended from Arabs brought to the Levant by the British to build infrastructure after World War I.
 
The Muslim religion’s holiest places are not in the Levant, but in the city of Mecca, located in the Arabian Peninsula. They have no specifically Palestinian culture that is completely Palestinian dating before the 1960s; in fact, prior to that, the majority identified as “greater Syrians.”
 
Some Palestinians share common ancestry with indigenous peoples, but they neither follow indigenous traditions nor do they self-identify as those indigenous peoples. They share neither religion nor language with them. Blood quantum alone is insufficient to transmit indigenous status.
 
The Arabs of the Middle East subsumed several indigenous populations, but no group can become indigenous through subsuming indigenous peoples. Rather, they conquered the entire region and spread their own language, customs, and religion. This is historical fact.
 
Now you might ask, why is this important? It is important to indigenous people because we cannot allow the argument that conquerors can become indigenous. If we, as other indigenous people, allow that argument to be made, then we are delegitimising our own rights.
 
If conquerors can become indigenous, then the white Europeans who came to my indigenous lands in North America could now claim to be indigenous. The white Europeans who went to Australia and New Zealand could now claim to be indigenous. If we, even once, allow that argument to be made, indigenous rights are suddenly devalued and meaningless. This is somewhat peculiar, as those who are arguing for Palestinian “indigenous rights” are usually those who have little grasp of the history, and no understanding of the truth behind indigenous rights.
 
If you should encounter the argument that conquerors may themselves become indigenous to a region by virtue of conquering, direct those who assert the argument to this article, and help them understand not only is the argument wrong – it is dangerous to Indigenous people everywhere.
 
Ryan BelleroseRyan Bellerose
The writer, a Zionist, is Metis from the Paddle Prairie Metis settlement in Northern Alberta, Canada. He founded Canadians For Accountability, a native rights advocacy group, and is an organizer and participant in the Idle No More movement in Calgary as well as a founding member of an Israeli advocacy group called Calgary United with Israel.

Hamas: 'Israel Has Eight Years Left'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 18 January 2014 15:42
Hamas terrorists in Gaza CityIsrael will be gone in eight years, according to one Hamas official. 
 
Fathi Hamad, Hamas's Interior Minister, claimed in a speech honoring the anniversary of Operation Cast Lead that "Palestine" would replace the Jewish State by 2022. 
 
Hamad noted in his speech that the Palestinian Arabs, according to Islamic prophecies, will enter the Al Aqsa Mosque "in jubilation and victory like they entered it the first time". He said that Israel has failed in previous wars waged against the Palestinians, while the Palestinians are progressing nationally towards the stage where they are capable of conquering Jerusalem. 
 
After the "liberation" of Al-Aqsa Mosque, said Hamad, the "Hittin" system will prevail. That statement refers to he means by which Saladin conquered the Land of Israel against the Crusaders, in particular during the Battle of Hittin/Hattin; namely, by slaughtering or enslaving the non-Muslim forces arrayed against him.
 
"We'll destroy the enemy," Hamad assured his audience, noting that achieving that goal would take "eight years."  Hamad also claimed that the Palestinians are at the stage of readiness for "jihad and martyrdom in the way of Allah".
 
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Hamas has threatened Israel's existence constantly, reiterating in November its oft-stated threats of genocide.  
 
"[You] Zionists, you have no place on the land of Palestine ... we shall expel you from our land and we will fight against you on it [on the land], we will kill you or expel you from it when you are submissive," Hamas parliamentarian Khalil Al-Hayya stated. "The jihad and the martyrdom in the way of Allah are our road and our track which are meant to fulfill our triumphs and fulfill and protect our [Muslim] nation." 

Does Israel's Media Want Jewish Blood on Its Hands?

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 10 January 2014 06:32
newspapersThe mainstream media is downplaying the terrorism of the past two years.
 
Asher Palmer and his 1-year-old son, Yonatan, were killed when their car was overturned near Hevron, after being struck by stones. Palestinian Arab stones
 
Moshe Ami of Ashkelon was killed when shrapnel from a rocket hit his car. A Palestinian Arab rocket.
 
Staff Sgt. Netanel Moshiashvili of Ashkelon was killed when a terrorist identified infiltrating Israel from the southern Gaza Strip opened fire at IDF soldiers. Palestinian Arab fire.
 
Said Fashapshe of Haifa was shot and killed by terrorists who penetrated the security fence along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel. Palestinian Arab shots.
 
Cpl. Netanel Yahalomi of Nof Ayalon was killed when terrorists opened fire on IDF soldiers securing the construction of the fence along the Israel-Egypt border. Palestinian Arab fire.
 
Mirah Scharf, 25, Aharon Smadja, 49, and Itzik Amsalem, 24, were killed in a direct rocket hit on an apartment building in Kiryat Malachi. A Palestinian Arab rocket.
 
Cpl. Yosef Fartuk of Emmanuel and Alayaan Salem al-Nabari from Rejwan in the Negev were killed by mortar fire in the Eshkol Regional Council area. Palestinian Arab mortar fire.
 
IDF reserve officer Lt. Boris Yarmulnik of Netanya was mortally wounded by rocket fire. Palestinian Arab rocket fire.
 
Evyatar Borovsky of Yitzhar was stabbed to death. A Palestinian Arab knife.
 
Sgt. Tomer Hazan of Bat Yam was murdered and his body concealed in a well. A Palestinian Arab well.
 
Sgt. Maj. Gal Kobi of Tirat Carmel was killed when he was shot in the neck at a checkpoint near Hevron's Cave of Patriarchs. Palestinian Arab fire.
 
Retired IDF Colonel Seraya Ofer was beaten to death by men wielding metal bars and axes outside his home. Palestinian Arab axes.
 
Pvt. Eden Atias of Nazareth Illit was stabbed to death on a bus at Afula's central bus station. Another Palestinian Arab knife.
 
Salah Shukri Abu Latyef of Rahat was shot and killed by sniper fire near the Israel-Gaza border fence. Palestinian Arab fire.
 
This list of Israeli victims of terrorism includes only the last two years of Palestinian Jihad. And I didn't mention all the Jewish toddlers stoned while travelling in their cars. I didn't list the buses that were nearly blown up either and that happened just last week.
 
But despite all this evidence, the Israeli media daily runs articles saying that this is not an Intifada, that Israel has a "partner" and that the Arabs are not interested in spilling Jewish blood.
 
The very opposite is true: that this is an ongoing pogrom,  Israel has only enemies, the terrorists from the areas controlled by the "moderate" PA are statistically more lethal to Jews than those from Hamas areas, but in general Palestinian Arab terrorists still love to smash the faces of Jewish children.
 
The complacent Israeli media, which downplays the threat of Arab-Islamic hatred, is going to have Jewish blood on its hands.
 
The only Israeli photographer to win the Pulitzer Prize, Oded Balilty of The Associated Press, got the award for his image of a Jewish young woman defying the Israeli security forces during the desruction of the Amona outpost in Samaria. That photo was a double whammy, it fabricated the image of the “settlers” as Jewish colonialists and the IDF as attackers of helpless women.
 
There are many who see the Haaretz newspaper is the symbol of the Israeli appeasement to terrorism. But the entire mainstream Israeli media establishment is infected with this malady of Jewish self hatred, appeasement, indolence, self-righteous expertism, cynicism and self-deprecation.
 
For those exemplars of the Israeli media, Arab killers and Jewish victims are jumbled together as components of a cycle of violence.
 
The Israeli media, which forges zeitgeist and orchestrates political crusades like that of the former Shin Bet heads, accepts the killing of Jewish lives without any significant resistance. And the Israeli media propagates the false prophesies on the need and duty of "disengagement", another name for Jewish self destruction.
 
I will not forget that the killers of Ido Zoltan in Samaria were members of Mahmoud Abbas's police force. They employed weapons authorized by the Israeli government, but that weapons handover was first blessed by the Israeli mainstream media.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He has just prblished a book about the Vatican and Israel titled "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.

A Terrorist's Dream Come True

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 10 January 2014 05:23
Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade terroristsArab terrorists chose their enemy wisely, says the writer, who chose a novel way to describe what he perceives as Israel's mistakes. Freeing terrorist murderers is only part of the larger picture.
 
Choosing Jews as the enemy is a terrorist's dream come true. 
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you can fire rockets by the thousands and if  you do receive a response, you know it will end prematurely and inconclusively. You face an Israeli enemy which, during a war, gives advance notice through flyers and phone calls to apartment residents that this or that building is being targeted, thereby giving what they call "uninvolved" civilians and yourselves enough time to escape with your lives.
 
In contrast, about a year ago, a US drone targeted a well known terrorist in Pakistan and even after confirming the man's wife and extended family were present, went ahead, killing the terrorist and nine of those present with him. Not a peep from anyone. (No country on the face of the earth goes anywhere near the extent Israel does in trying to avoid civilian casualties, but what benefit has it gained in world opinion from dong that?)
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you can fabricate stories of a supposed massacre (e.g. in Jenin), knowing full well that nothing occurred, but that it will cast dispersions on an enemy which foolishly states that it will investigate the claim, thereby implying that there may be something to the story. If you are a terrorist, you know that your Israeli enemy has not a clue how to counter the Hasbara war you are waging against them - and doesn't even know that Hasbara is a war.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you will certainly know that you can make the most outrageous and heinous statements, such as “Jews are the offspring of pigs and apes”, knowing full well that the Israelis will still offer to sit down with you in talks with no preconditions - not even the demand that the indoctrination of children in hate must stop.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you will know that if captured, you will be well treated. In the case of Marwan Barghouti, a terrorist "with blood on his hands" sitting in an Israeli prison, being well treated includes access to world media, in order to say anything you like.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you will rejoice in that country's stupidity in allowing the Muslim Waqf to take control of the Temple Mount after the 1967 war, all for then-CoS Moshe Dayan's desire to be magnanimous. This will allow you to go on excavating under the Temple Mount with a bulldozer, destroying any remaining Jewish artifacts in order to rid the place of any trace of the first and second Temple periods - and in the process, build a mosque there for future proof of claim to the land.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you will know that so successful is your propaganda, that your enemy will accused by the world media for "settlement expansion" even though it is building a new house or an extension to an existing home within the boundaries of existing Jewish communities.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you know that the world has bought your lie that there was once a Palestinian people, when in fact, no such people ever existed. As a matter of fact, in Biblical times, all of what is now Israel and Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank") was Jewish. When the Romans conquered the territory, they named the entire area "Philistina" in order to rub salt into the wounds of the defeated Jews by renaming it in honor of the Jews' ancient and mortal enemies, the Philistines. By doing so, the Romans acknowledged that the real owners of the territory were Jews. Over the centuries, the name Philistina was anglicized to Palestine.
 
At the beginning of the 20th Century, if one were referred to as a Palestinian, that automatically implied that he or she was Jewish. Decades later, Arabs cleverly commandeered the term "Palestinian" and the unknowing masses bought the message that these same Arabs have never forgiven the division of "their country" by the UN. The facts are that Palestine was a land mass administered by the British from 1914 until the 1947 Partition Plan, when only a small part was allocated to its centuries-old rightful owners, the Jewish people.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you will know that no nation in the Western world will call you to account for your ongoing myths and lies.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you know that your enemy will indulge your ludicrous and incessant claims and still be willing to sit down with you in good faith.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you should pray that your enemy continue treating you as it does now, that is, not as a "normal" country would. If your enemy was a "normal" country like Russia, China or the USA facing barrage after deadly barrage of missiles, you could rest assured that parts of Gaza and the "West Bank" would have been reduced to rubble long ago.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you should get down on your hands and knees and thank Allah that this democracy called Israel allows its President to badmouth the Israeli Government at every opportunity in order to try to bring its downfall, to be replaced with a left wing one more to his liking. In spite of the fact that Abbas has stated over and over again that the PA will never recognise Israel as a Jewish state, this being a red line which he will not cross, President Shimon Peres, the left wing ideologue and “elder statesman” who brought Israel the disastrous Oslo Accords, still harbors the view that his good friend Abbas is a partner for peace! This  is the same Peres who, when learning that Yasser Arafat was caught preaching “jihad” in Arabic to his assembled throng, rushed to his defence by saying he was really calling for a “jihad for peace.”
 
And best of all for you, if you are a terrorist facing Israel, you know that within the Jewish Diaspora, you  have supporters who have fallen for your propaganda, fallen for your attempts to rewrite history, who flock to your side and denounce Israel for every step it takes in its defence. You will be able to count on many of those whom you call the “offspring of pigs and apes” to defend your every move. These same "offspring of pigs and apes" will help devise ways of bringing economic hardship to Israel by such schemes as a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign.
 
In fact, thanks to Peres' efforts, Israel hosts annual talkfests where all manner of individuals, from has-been politicians regurgitating the same old failed solutions to Hollywood celebrities like Barbra Streisand, Robert De Niro and Sharon Stone, none of whom has a political track record, all come together to shower Israelis with their collective intellect, on what Israel should or should not do in matters of life and death.
 
If you are a terrorist facing Israel, you can take heart from  seeing how that democracy called Israel does not enforce Israeli law where Negev Bedouin are concerned. The fact that they once roamed the Middle East tending their flocks does not prove ownership and for Israel to have succumbed to pressure and allow them to register vacant land in the Land Registry as privately held, is appalling. (It is outrageous that an organisation called Regavim has to take the Israeli Government to court to enforce its own laws in order to keep Jewish lands in Jewish hands)
 
But this can change. It is time for Israel to stop building up terrorist self-confidence and act like a sovereign power in control of its own destiny. Israel has only one option and that is to walk away from this so called "peace process', to take unilateral action on borders, hand the welfare of those people outside those borders to the UNHCR, Jordan, Egypt or whoever and to expel all foreign and hostile NGOs.The world would no doubt not recognise these moves, but then the world recognises nothing Israel does anyway.
 
At a minimum, the world would see that Israel has finally gotten up off its knees. 
 
Gil SolomonGil Solomon
The writer is a retired finance manager and author.

Israel vs.Islamists: Setting the Record Straight

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 04 January 2014 19:35
Israel vs.IslamistsMuslim-on-Muslim violence is what the world should be condemning. Instead, the Brits put up a "wall" in London the protest the security wall that discriminates against suicide bombers.
 
Lets’ set the record straight before the year ends:
 
Israel is not an apartheid Nazi state. Islam is the largest practitioner of both gender and religious apartheid.
 
Infidel violence against or hatred of Muslims is a mere drop in the bucket. Muslim-on-Muslim violence is a pandemic and indigenous feature of Muslim-Muslim relationships, beginning with the endless religious feuds between Sunni and Shiia Muslims.
 
Today, Muslims are torturing, exiling, and blowing each other up in Egypt, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Pakistan, and Afghanistan—to name only a few Muslim-majority countries.
 
While the West may be imperfect, mea culpa, mea culpa, Islam has a very long and bloody history of imperialism, colonialism, anti-Black racism, conversion via the sword, slavery, and the above mentioned apartheid.
 
 
The attempt to appropriate Jesus as a victimized “Palestinian” by the very Muslims who are slaughtering Christians all over the Middle East and who have driven Arab Christians out of Bethlehem is disgusting.
The miserable Brits have just built a large “Security Wall” at St James Church in Piccadilly and plan to use it to continue demonizing the Jewish state for the next twelve days. It is an “art installation,” political theatre, very trendy.
 
Not shown, never mentioned, are the names or graves of Israeli civilians, including children and the elderly, who were being blown up and butchered during the height of the Al Aqsa Intifada; not mentioned are those who were disabled for life; but mainly, it is forbidden to say that the “security wall” worked, that the number of Israeli civilian casualties plunged because it existed.
 
Jesus was not a “Palestinian.” He was a Jew, some say he was a rabbi, and that the Last Supper was a Pesach seder. The attempt to appropriate Jesus as a victimized “Palestinian” by the very Muslims who are slaughtering Christians all over the Middle East and who have driven Arab Christians out of Bethlehem is typical, disgusting, and must continually be exposed.
 
Israel may not be a perfect nation but its Arab citizens, both Muslim and Christian, are the only Arabs in the Arab world who enjoy religious freedom, can vote and express themselves freely, and who have been peacefully elected to Parliament.
 
As Hamad Amar, a  Druze citizen of Israel and the Speaker of Israel’s Knesset has written in The Hill, an American Congressional blog:
 
“In our whole region consisting of over 350 million Arabs, there are only 1,658,000 Arabs who have complete political and religious freedom and have the right to vote in full democratic elections. It is no coincidence that all of these Arabs live as full and equal citizens in the one Jewish State.”
 
Israel values human life, its enemies value death, murder, martyrdom. To redeem Gilad Shalit, Israel released terrorists with blood on their hands to return as glorified heroes and to resume their “careers” as terrorists. Jews value life this much.
 
I hope and pray that Jonathan Pollard will finally be set free while he and I are both still alive and I hope that Israel does not have to pay too dear a price for his freedom.
 
Israel is compassionate and humanitarian. It has provided medical aid to Syrian refugees, and before that to Lebanese in flight from Arafat’s terrorism. Israel has sent medical and emergency teams all over the world wherever there has been a flood or an earthquake.
 
Israel takes care of its own; the world does not exactly care about Jews. Israel is not a parasite on the international community. Thus, Israel absorbed all the Jews living in Arab lands who were exiled or who had to flee their homes in Muslim-majority countries in the Arab Middle East, North Africa, and central Asia.
 
It did not demand that the UN pay for this massive relocation project. The same cannot be said for the Arab countries which have refused citizenship to the “Palestinians,” and indeed, who created the very concept of a Palestinian people where none had ever existed, as a force with which to exterminate Jewish Israel.
 
Oh, I could go on but for now, please allow me to wish all those Christians who support Israel, who love Israel, even more than some Jews do—the most wonderful holiday.
 
Phyllis Chesler01Prof. Phyllis Chesler
The writer, a Fellow of the Middle East Forum, is the author of fifteen books, including Women and Madness, Woman's Inhumanity to Woman, and The New Anti-Semitism. She has published three studies about honor killing and is work on a fourth. Her new book, An American Bride in Kabul, (Palgrave Macmillan) has just been published to great acclaim. Professor Chesler may be reached at her website www.phyllis-chesler.com

The Palestinian Red LIne

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 03 January 2014 19:41
obama-red-linePA leader Abbas views recognition of Israel as the Jewish state as a red line. It is high time the Palestinians recognize the Jewish people’s right to their ancient homeland, as Israel already recognized Palestinian rights in the land 35 years ago.
 
The media reported that Mahmoud Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority (PA), rejected the peace proposals submitted by US Secretary of State John Kerry. The Palestinians leaked that Abbas sent a letter to Kerry reiterating his complete opposition to the demand to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. This was declared a “red line” that the Palestinians will not cross.
 
This “red line” is not just about semantics, but rather the essence of the conflict. The Palestinian position amounts to denying the Jews the right to establish their state in their homeland. It also indicates without any doubt that the Palestinians, despite the conventional wisdom, are not ready to reach a historic compromise with Zionism, the Jewish national revival movement.
 
Therefore, a stable peace based on mutual recognition and ending all demands is not in the cards. The weak PA seems to accept partition of Mandatory Palestine into two states – perhaps in accordance with the PLO’s stages approach – but it still refrains from accepting the legitimacy of the Zionist enterprise.
 
This is in stark contrast to Israel, which recognized the “legitimate rights of the Palestinians” in the September 1978 Camp David Accords, and is ready for generous territorial concessions in order to implement a partition of the Land of Israel/Palestine.
 
The bitter truth is that the asymmetry in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has not changed for over a century. In essence, this ethno-religious conflict is not about territory – although it obviously has a territorial dimension – but about securing the recognition of the other side to national rights in a given territory.
 
Despite the image of untrustworthiness in keeping written agreements, Palestinians actually give great importance to the language used in the documents they are asked to sign. Yasser Arafat, generally viewed by most Israelis as an accomplished liar, refused in 2000 to sign an agreement that included a clause about an end to all demands. For him the conflict could end only with Israel’s eventual demise.
 
Similarly, Abbas cannot bring himself to put his signature to a document which says that the Jews have returned to their homeland. We know that the perception of Jews being foreign invaders of Palestine is a fundamental widespread Palestinian attitude, which is instilled in the younger generations in the PA-run schools.
 
The entrenchment of such attitudes is clear also by the lack of a debate among the Palestinians whether to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. Discussing Jewish rights to the Land of Israel is not conceivable in the current intra-Palestinian deliberations.
 
Not even the so-called Palestinian moderates are calling for a debate among the Palestinians on whether to recognize the right of self-determination of the Jews in their historic homeland. Palestinian polls do not ask whether Israel should be recognized as a Jewish state. Normative language mentioning rights and international norms in Palestinian discourse is reserved for Palestinian demands only, and is never applied to understand what Israelis want.
 
The efforts of the Palestinian media to negate the Jewish past and historic links to the Temple Mount, and even the Western Wall, indicate an ideological commitment to rewriting history. Palestinian archeology is similarly used to erase all traces of Jewish presence from the land. Even Koranic sources mentioning the links of the Jews to the Land of Israel are ignored.
 
Such Palestinian behavior serves only to prolong the conflict because it does not teach the Palestinians that Jews are part of the history of this land. All these acts are intolerable and must stop before Israel considers signing a comprehensive peace agreement.
 
It was a mistake not to insist on recognition of Israel being a Jewish state in the negotiations with the Palestinians in the 1990s. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu understands very well the need for such recognition by the Palestinians to ensure a historic peace deal, and his insistence on getting it in the framework of a comprehensive settlement is right on the mark.
 
Moreover, Palestinian Arabs are different than the Egyptians or Jordanians, who were not required to accept Israel as a Jewish state. They have no claims to Palestine, while it is the Palestinian Arabs and the Israelis that fight for the same piece of land.
 
The Israelis recognized Palestinian legitimate rights 35 years ago. It is high time for the Palestinians to learn about the “other” they are in conflict with, and reciprocate if they are serious about making peace.
 
Prof. Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, is a professor of political studies at Bar-Ilan University and a fellow at the Middle East Forum.
 
A BESA Center Perspectives Paper, published through the generosity of the Greg Rosshandler Family
 
Prof. Efraim InbarProf. Efraim Inbar
The author is Professor in Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University and the Director of its Begin-Sadat (BESA) Center for Strategic Studies.

Key Hezbollah leader killed near Beirut

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 04 December 2013 17:19
Hassan al-LaqqisHezbollah on Wednesday said one of its leaders had been assassinated near Beirut and accused Israel of being behind the killing.
 
“The Islamic resistance announces the death of one of its leaders, the martyr Hassan al-Laqqis, who was assassinated near his house in the Hadath region” east of Beirut, Hezbollah television channel al-Manar said.
 
The Lebanese Shiite movement said in a statement that Laqqis was killed at around midnight in the Hadath district of the Lebanese capital. It gave no detail of the operation but said “the accusation is directed at the enemy, Israel.”
 
Israel on Wednesday denied the allegations by Hezbollah.
 
“This is yet another Pavlovian response from Hezbollah, which makes automatic accusations [against Israel] before even thinking about what's actually happened,” Israel’s foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said.
 
“Israel has nothing to do with this,” he told Agence France-Presse.
 
Hezbollah described Laqqis as “one of the leaders of the Islamic resistance” against Israel and said that the country has tried to have him killed several times in the past.
 
“Laqqis was one of the top Hezbollah leaders, a prominent jihadist in the fight against Israel and played a big role in the movement,” Ali Thbayty, a Lebanese political analyst who has written extensively on Hezbollah, told Al Arabiya News.
 
“Amid the political and religious divisions in Lebanon, it is clear that this assassination serves the purpose of fanning the flames of sectarianism in the country. Such violence has the ability to turn Lebanon into another Iraq or Syria,” he added.
 
As of Wednesday morning, Thbayty said information on Laqqis’ killing was still scarce.
 
“But nothing stays quiet in Lebanon, sooner or later we will find out exactly how Laqqis was assassinated.
 
“The blame placed on Israel is being discussed politically; any attack which targets figures such as Laqqis will be viewed as a symptom of political divisions within Lebanon and hostilities with Israel.
 
“Whether Israel’s Mossad carried out the killing or not, it’s become easy to place blame on Israel whenever question marks pop up.”
 
Hostilities
 
Hezbollah MP Nazieh Mansour declined to comment on the slain commander, however when asked about Israel’s accused involvement in the killing, he spoke of hostilities between the Lebanese movement and Israel.
 
“The Zionist entity is Hezbollah’s arch enemy,” Mansour told Al Arabiya News on Wednesday.
 
“Who is the main party to gain from this killing? The Zionist entity. This is why the finger is pointed at them, even before knowing any further details about the assassination.”
 
Hezbollah, which fought a 34-day war with Israel in 2006, has also sent fighters into Syria to support the forces of President Bashar al-Assad against the many Sunni Muslim opposition seeking his ouster.
 
Blaming Israel is ‘conventional’
 
“The latest assassination is predictable,” Yezid Sayigh, a senior associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut, told Al Arabiya News.
 
“I’ve been anticipating all along that the real threat to Lebanon isn’t just civil war, but rather what we’re seeing now; car bombings, the occasional assassination, rocket attacks.
 
“Whether it’s Syrian-backed groups [behind the attack] or Israelis taking advantage of the situation to start targeting a few key individuals that they want to get rid of, it becomes very difficult in these situations to know who’s doing what.”
 
Sayigh said accusing Israel was a “conventional” move by Hezbollah.
 
“It’s conventional to immediately blame Hezbollah but, in a way, it’s not impossible.
 
“Clearly the Israelis had an interest in getting rid of Laqqis, and so it may well have been them taking advantage of the situation, whether they worked through their own agents or working through people embedded in other groups behind the scenes.
 
“Now there’s no proof that Israel is behind this, but it’s certainly likely.”
 
‘Close to Nasrallah’
 
While Hezbollah’s involvement in the Syrian war next door may have prompted Syrian-backed groups to target Laqqis, Israel is still under heavy scrutiny.
 
“There are a number of reasons which allow me to suspect Israel may be behind this,” Ibrahim Sharqieh, a conflict resolution analyst at the Brookings Doha Center, told Al Arabiya News on Wednesday.
 
“Hassan al-Laqqis is a military person, involved in the military planning of Hezbollah and is very close to the movement’s leader Hassan Nasrallah. Historically, Israel targets these types of individuals within Hezbollah.
 
“Laqqis is also in charge of the communications within Hezbollah, which is something extremely vital for the group.”
 
“Another reason indicating he may have been targeted by Israel is that he is not very well known; Laqqis is not a public figure, which means that there appears to be some intelligence involved.
 
“I just don’t see anti-Hezbollah militias or rebels in Syria having the intelligence needed to detect individuals such as Laqqis and his sensitive position.”

Rowhani: nuclear facilities ‘red line’

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 30 November 2013 19:52
Hassan RouhaniIran will not dismantle its nuclear facilities as demanded by its arch-foe Israel and some U.S. conservative lawmakers, President Hassan Rowhani told the Financial Times in an interview published on Friday.
 
World powers reached a deal with Iran last week to curb its nuclear program in exchange for limited relief of sanctions stifling its economy.
 
Israel criticized the deal as a “historical mistake” with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying a comprehensive deal with Iran “must, in the end, lead to the result of the dismantling of Iran’s military nuclear capability.”
 
When asked by the Financial Times if Tehran whether dismantling its nuclear facilities is a “red line” Rowhani replied: “100 percent.”
 
Rowhani further stressed that the level to which Iran will continue to enrich uranium will be determined by the country’s need for fule.
 
Regarding Iran’s future relation with the United States, Rowhani said: “We need to decrease tensions at this stage and create mutual trust step by step. The problems created over 35 years cannot be resolved over a limited time,” he said.
 
“The best test to see whether we are capable of building trust or not is this nuclear issue. If the first steps taken in Geneva are implemented carefully and precisely, it would mean that we have taken one step forward toward trust,” Rowhani said.
 
Iran’s six-month freeze of its nuclear program agreed with world powers in Geneva will start by early January, Tehran’s envoy to the U.N. atomic watchdog indicated Friday. 
 
"We expect that either at the end of December or the beginning of January we should start implementing the measures agreed by both sides," Reza Najafi, envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency, told reporters, according to AFP.
 
The freeze is meant to make it more difficult for Iran to develop a nuclear weapon and to build confidence while Tehran and the P5+1 hammer out a long-term accord.

Egypt to Receive $4 Billion in Russian Arms

Category: Reports
Created on Wednesday, 20 November 2013 20:08
Illustration- Black Hawk helicopterA Kuwaiti newspaper reported Wednesday that Russia was set to transfer billions of dollars worth of arms to Egypt before the end of the year. According to the report in the Al Rei newspaper, the Russian arms package is designed to specifically enable Egypt to at least achieve parity with the IDF.
 
Egyptian media on Wednesday quoted a top Russian arms official, Sergei Tshimisov as saying that Russia would be completing its transfer of an air defense system to Egypt within days. Among the items that are part of the deal are advanced helicopters and Russian-made MiG-21 fighter jets, Tshimisov said at an event in Dubai.
 
Other defensive systems will make their way to Cairo in the coming months, Russian sources said. Among them were surface to air missiles that could knock out targets up to an altitude of 15 kilometers.
 
When asked about how Russia expected Egypt – which is broke – to pay for the arms, Tshimisov said that Moscow was prepared to be “very flexible” in its payment conditions, as Moscow was very interested in solidifying its relationship with Cairo.
 
A Russian report Wednesday said that the overall deal was worth $4 billion, but that Egypt had been asked to pay just half that. Egyptian sources said that the money would most likely come from donations to Cairo from Gulf states.
 
Russia's "flexibility" may indicate that the Kremlin's objectives in securing the deal - an outcome of a recent visit to Cairo by its Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov - were not merely financial. 
 
The past few months have seen a resurgence in Russia's previously minor influence in the Middle East and northern Africa, as relations between the US and its traditional Arab allies have cooled considerably, over concerns about the Obama administration's perceived weakness over instability in Syria and Egypt, and its hasty pursuit of detente with Iran.

Iranian Supreme Leader: Israel 'Doomed to Collapse'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 20 November 2013 19:55
Ayatollah Ali KhameneiIranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Wednesday that Israel is a "regime doomed to collapse." His threats come as the latest round of talks over Iran's nuclear weapons program is being held in Geneva.
 
AFP reports that Khamenei told commanders of the Islamist Basij militia force in Tehran: "the Zionist regime (Israel) is a regime whose pillars are extremely shaky and is doomed to collapse."
 
Responding to Israeli concerns over Iran's nuclear weapons program, Khamenei called Israel "the rabid dog of the region" and claimed Israel poses a threat to the world, not Iran. The Basij crowd responded with cries of "Death to Israel" and "Death to America."
 
Khamenei had insults for Israeli officials as well. 
 
Deputy Foreign Minister Ze'ev Elkin (Likud) on Tuesday backed previous statements that Israel could militarily act alone to defend itself from the Iranian nuclear threat.
 
Perhaps in response, Khamenei said "the title of human is not worthy of the leaders of the Zionist regime," adding that the Iranian response to a military action would be "a slap in the face they will never forget."
 
Khamenei further said in a live state television broadcast that "any phenomenon that is created by force cannot endure," referring to Israel's numerous defensive wars fought to ensure the country's existence.
 
This is not the first time Khamenei has made threats or attacks on Israel.
 
In early November the supreme leader of Iran called Israel an "illegitimate and bastard regime," and further called the US a "smiling enemy" that is not to be trusted.
 
The statements reveal a deep-seated animosity that raises further doubts about the ongoing talks in Geneva aimed at reaching an agreement over Iran's nuclear program.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has been a vocal opponent of the program, noting that proposals risk easing sanctions on Iran and leaving the Islamic regime at "breakout capacity." If that were to happen Iran could turn its reactors back on and produce a nuclear weapon whenever it chooses.
 
Amid disagreement with US President Barack Obama's administration over the nuclear talks, Netanyahu on Wednesday took off for last minute talks in Russia with President Vladimir Putin to try and explain Israel's concerns.
 
International sanctions have been crippling Iran through an ongoing diplomatic effort to block the country's pursuit of nuclear weapons. Concerns have been raised that the sanctions may be lifted in the Geneva talks without Iran's program being dismantled.
 
Regarding the sanctions, recent reports revealed that despite his country's economic suffering, Khamenei controls a business empire worth $95 billion, which is more than Iran's current annual oil exports.

Iran diplomacy better than war, U.S. tells Israel

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 November 2013 10:23
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry File -Reuters
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned against a “bad deal” on Iran’s nuclear program, in comments posted to Twitter on Friday.
 
But his remarks were met with what appeared to be Washington’s response to the premier.
 
U.S. State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters later in the day that American administration believes the path proposed by Israel to subdue Iran with sanctions may lead to war and not to a peaceful resolution of the nuclear issue.
 
Six world powers are currently negotiating a freeze to Iran’s suspect nuclear program for a new round of talks in Geneva.
 
Last week, the previous round of talks failed to seal a first step deal which would halt Iran’s program in return for relief from crippling sanctions while all sides negotiate a final deal over the next six months.
 
“I think we're looking at multiple tracks here, including our continued pursuit of seeing whether a diplomatic path is possible. The alternative in our view is a path to war,” Psaki said.
 
“We think the path to diplomacy is the right path,” she added.
 
Earlier, Netanyahu’s tweet read: ”The proposal enables Iran to develop atomic bombs and build long-range missiles to reach the U.S. and Europe,” it read. “Iran is getting everything and giving nothing.”
 
Psaki said she saw the tweet Friday but had no response to it, according to the Israel-based Ynet news site.
 
The U.S. official reiterated though that Israel and the United States had the same goal of preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.
 
“The place where we diverge a bit is on the tactical level, where we believe we need a first step that halts Iran's program to give us time to negotiate this long-term agreement and they believe we should just keep upping the pressure on Iran to get them to capitulate all at once to a long-term agreement,” Psaki said.
 
“We don't, obviously, think that's a path that is possible.”
 
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday he understands Israel's “deep concerns” over Iran's nuclear program and that the two allies share the same goal in curbing the perceived threat, although they differ in tactics.
 
“We're having a very friendly and civil conversation about this,” Kerry told MSNBC. “I respect completely his deep concerns - as a prime minister of Israel should have - about the existential nature of this threat to Israel. We understand that.”

Iranian Nuclear Program Has Cost $170 Billion

Category: Reports
Created on Wednesday, 13 November 2013 05:56
A general view of the water facility at ArakIsraeli security sources claimed Tuesday that Iran's controversial nuclear program has cost the country $170 billion, mostly due to economic sanctions.
 
Of the $170 billion price tag, $40 billion were "invested over the past 20 years in the construction and operation of nuclear infrastructure," the sources told AFP.    
 
They said Iran had "lost $130 billion because of sanctions put in place since 2012," including $105 million linked to the oil sector and $25 billion to banking, trade and industry, development and investment.    
 
The Israeli sources also gave figures for the amount of money they said Iran had sent to its allies in Syria - President Bashar al-Assad's regime in Damascus and Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah -- as well as to Gaza's Islamist rulers Hamas and the Gaza-based Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
 
Up to $10 billion dollars went to Hezbollah, "hundreds of millions" to Damascus, and $1.3 to $1.8 billion to Hamas and the PIJ, they said. But they did not specify when and within what time frame this aid had been delivered.
 
The figures came amid an escalating war of words over the current approach to ongoing nuclear talks with Iran led by the US.
 
Critics of the current approach to talks - most notably Israel, as well as other US allies such as France and Saudi Arabia - fear the Obama administration's approach towards relaxing sanctions in exchange for Tehran curbing or freezing parts of its controversial nuclear program is a grave mistake - one which would essentially squander the advantage gained by sanctions which have pressured the regime back to the negotiating table.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has warned on numerous occasions that the relaxing on a sanctions regime which took many years to fully implement in exchange for what he dismissed as superficial concessions on the part of Tehran would be a "bad and dangerous" move.
 
Speaking to reporters following a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry, Netanyahu warned that western leaders were appearing too eager to sign a "rushed deal".
 
"I reminded him (Kerry) that he said that no deal is better than a bad deal. And the deal that is being discussed in Geneva right now is a bad deal," Netanyahu said.
 
The proposed relaxation of sanctions would mean that "Iran is not required to take apart even one (uranium enrichment) centrifuge. But the international community is relieving sanctions on Iran for the first time after many years.
 
"I urge Secretary Kerry not to rush to sign, to wait, to reconsider, to get a good deal," he added.
 
Officials in Israel have warned they could carry out unilateral military action to stop Iran developing nuclear weapons capability if diplomatic efforts fail.
 
Critics of the Israeli position have denounced the Prime Minister as "hysterical" over his dire warnings of the consequences of relaxing sanctions too quickly. But others have pointed out that his approach is grounded in very real concerns over the perceived naivete of the current American approach.
 
Responding to concerns, US Ambassador Dan Shapiro on Monday sought to quell Israeli fears over an emerging deal with Iran, vowing that Washington would never let Tehran acquire a nuclear weapon.    
 
President Barack Obama "will not permit Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon, period," he told delegates attending the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in Jerusalem.    
 
Western countries accuse Iran of seeking to develop an atomic weapon, a charge Tehran denies.    
 
Diplomats have said they are closing in on an interim agreement that would freeze or curb some of Iran's nuclear activities for as long as six months in exchange for an easing of the tight sanctions on the Islamic republic, after failing to secure a deal at weekend crunch talks in Geneva.   

Arab Youth Stabs Soldier to Death in Northern Israel

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 13 November 2013 05:42
Scene of the murderA soldier has died after an Arab terrorist stabbed him in the neck and upper body in the Central Bus Station at Afula, in northern Israel, Wednesday. The attack took place inside a bus.
 
"The Israeli soldier who was stabbed this morning by a Palestinian on a bus at the Afula bus station has died of his wounds in hospital," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP.
 
The attacker has been identified as an Arab aged 16 from the Palestinian Authority city of Jenin, who is reportedly staying illegally in Israel. He reportedly attacked the soldier at about 8:45 a.m., and stabbed him repeatedly. Civilians who were present at the scene neutralized him and stopped the attack at a certain point.
 
The soldier received initial medical care on the spot and was taken to Haemek Hospital in very serious condition.
 
An eyewitness named Tal told IDF Radio that she was walking past the bus when people began shouting “terrorist!” and a large commotion ensued. “The terrorist tried to run away but the police managed to catch him,” she added.
 
Another eyewitness told Maariv that the soldier, who is about 18, got on the bus at Nazareth, together with the terrorist. The soldier fell asleep on the way to Afula and at a certain point, the Arab began stabbing him over and over again, until other passengers grabbed hold of him and alerted security forces.
 
IDF Radio said that the attacker confessed that he left his home and got on the bus at Nazareth, with the intent of stabbing civilians, supposedly as revenge for the fact that his uncles are being held in Israeli jails.
 
The attack appears typical of the terror strikes that the Palestinian Authority (PA) under Mahmoud Abbas encourages through incitement, in a way that allows the PA to maintain that it is innocent of actually planning and organizing attacks, and that it did not send the terrorists on their missions.
 
Israel has weakly protested the PA's non-stop incitement for years, but has never gone as far as to make “peace talks” with the PA conditional on a complete cessation of incitement.
 
PA residents are routinely exposed to television, radio and printed media content that glorifies murderers of Jews and encourages violence against Israel. When a PA youth seeks to attack Jews, he does so knowing that he has the full moral backing and encouragement of the PA, which will then glorify him, pay him a salary when he is jailed, and demand to free him in an Israeli "gesture."

Mr Rouhani: Recognize Israel

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 06 October 2013 06:54
rowhani - UNPresidents Obama and Rouhani have had a phone conversation.  It was the first time since 1979 that the presidents of Iran and the United States have spoken to each other.
 
 Iran resents the United States for putting the Shah into power in 1953.  The United States resents Iran for holding 52 Americans hostage for 444 days (November 4, 1979, to January 20, 1980). Despite these tangible offenses, the leaders of the two countries were finally able to speak.
 
Iran and Israel have no such offenses as part of their history.  Israel has never ever done anything to harm Iran.  Iran, to be sure, sends weapons to Hezbollah, which is a threat to Israel.  But Iran has never engaged in any direct hostility against Israel.
 
Nevertheless, in 2001, Iran’s President Rafsanjani, who is generally described as a moderate, called the existence of Israel an ugly, colonialist phenomenon and said that nuclear war could destroy everything on the ground in Israel but would merely damage the world of Islam.
 
Iranian leaders have consistently spoken against Israel’s existence.  Furthermore, they are creating a nuclear arsenal and have endured severe sanctions in order to keep increasing their nuclear capabilities, while claiming that they are not interested in building a bomb.  Their claim is not convincing in light of their willingness to endure economic hardships resulting from sanctions.
 
 So then, why are they continuing to oppose Israel?
 
Iran’s hostility towards Israel makes no sense whatsoever.  Iran has mentioned the plight of the Palestinians on occasion, but Iran has hardly ever been friends with an Arab nation.  The big exception is with Assad’s Syria, since Assad is an Alawite and therefore a member of a Shiite sect. Palestinians, and most Arabs, are Sunnis.  Sunnis and Shiites have been at war for centuries.
 
Iran has never faced up to the fact that it has no reason to be enemies with Israel.  Neither has the rest of the world.  Leaders of all nations take it for granted that Iran is Israel’s enemy, and nobody has ever asked why.  Hostility to Israel is the rule and not the exception.  Who needs a motive?
 
On the other hand, Iran does have a reason to worry about the status of Shiites in the Arab world.  That is why Iran is aiding Hezbollah, a Shiite organization.  Week after week, bombs go off in market places and even in mosques in Iraq and Pakistan.  They kill lots of people who happen to be present at the sites of the bombings.  The victims are typically Shiites, and the bombs are, by and large, directed against Shiites.
 
Although Iranian leaders have not been reacting publicly to these religious murders, they are concerned about terrorism.  “In July, China and Iran signed an agreement on security cooperation to strengthen their bilateral cooperation to combat terrorism and drug-related crimes. But more such collaborative efforts are needed to bring an end to the scourge of terrorism,” according to an op-ed in China Daily by He Wenping that appeared on September 25.
 
China is worried about terrorism in Xinjiang Province; Iran is concerned about attacks on Shiites.  It makes sense for them to cooperate.  Somehow, Iran has not seen fit to publicize this issue.
 
Recognizing Israel would do Iran a world of good.  It could benefit from Israeli technology.  It could end the nuclear expansion that provoked the sanctions. It could open up the United States to becoming a trading partner of Iran.
 
Rouhani would like to make Iran rich and secure.  On the other hand, think of how timid he was about recognizing that the Holocaust had happened. If one hates Israel, one is quite open to the concept of denial, since the Holocaust was one of the factors leading to the United Nations vote dividing the British Mandate of Palestine into two states.
 
On the third hand, what would Iran’s mullahs say? Would they declare Rouhani’s presidency invalid?  Perhaps they would.  If so, maybe Rouhani could use this as a way of ending the power of Iran’s theocrats.
 
Israel is the most hated nation on earth, which is a reason that the Palestinian Arabs have never been able to accept a compromise with Israel that would have created a Palestinian Arab state.  The Palestinian Arabs are the only independence movement ever to reject independence because of a boundary dispute.
 
They had to reject it; one can’t make a deal with a party that is universally detested.  If Rouhani recognized Israel, it would help the Palestinian Arabs.
 
Recognize Israel, President Rouhani.
 
Prof. George JochnowitzProf. George Jochnowitz
The writer is professor emeritus of linguistics whose specialty is Jewish languages, in particular the dialects of the Jews of Italy and southern France. He taught for many years at the College of Staten Island, CUNY, and was an exchange professor at Hebei University in Baoding, China. His varied interests include politics, music, the Bible, and humanity itself - and his wife, two daughters and grandson.

Arab States to Single Out Israel at Nuclear Weapons Convention

Category: News
Created on Monday, 23 September 2013 07:29
Arab League leaders and delegates pose for a picture at the opening of the Arab League summit in the Qatari capital Doha on March 26 2013. AFP
 
Arab States will continue in their push to single Israel out for criticism at this week's UN nuclear agency meeting, defying western calls to refrain from doing so, according to a senior Arab League representative.
 
Frustrated over the indefinite postponement last year of an international conference on banning atomic arms in the region, Arab states have proposed a non-binding resolution expressing concern about "Israeli nuclear capabilities"
 
The non-binding text, submitted for the first time since 2010 to this week's member meeting of the IAEA, calls on Israel to join a global anti-nuclear weapons pact and place its atomic facilities under IAEA monitoring and will be voted on later Friday.
 
If adopted at the annual member-state gathering of the UN International Atomic Energy Agency, it would call on Israel to join a global anti-nuclear weapons treaty and place its nuclear facilities under IAEA monitoring.
 
Diplomats are expecting a very close vote.
 
The United States said on Tuesday that the Arab initiative to target Israel over its assumed nuclear arsenal would hurt diplomatic efforts to ban weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East.
 
US envoy to the IAEA, Joseph Macmanus, said that Washington is committed to working toward a Middle East zone free of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and their delivery systems, but said that the Arab resolution "does not advance our shared goal of progress toward a WMD-free zone in the Middle East.”
 
"Instead, it undermines efforts at constructive dialogue toward that common objective," Macmanus said in a statement e-mailed to Reuters news agency.
 
Israel is widely believed to possess the Middle East's only nuclear arsenal, drawing frequent Arab and Iranian condemnation. It has never acknowledged having nuclear weapons.
 
Israel is not a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and, as a result, is not obligated to allow IAEA inspectors into its nuclear facilities, or abide by the international body's mandates regarding plant function.
 
Ambassador Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy, head of the Arab League group at the IAEA, insisted that the resolution would be brought up for a vote on Friday, despite US pressure to withdraw it.
 
"The world has to know that Israel is not playing a constructive role, that Israel has a (nuclear) capability," Ramzy told Reuters.
 
Arab diplomats said that they refrained from putting forward their resolution on Israel at the 2011 and 2012 IAEA meetings to boost the chances of the Middle East conference taking place last year, but decided to table the resolution this year when that did not happen.
 
Arab delegations have tried to focus attention on the Dimona reactor in southern Israel, which they claim has been "overlooked" by IAEA inspectors for decades.
 
The Arab League has unsuccessfully tried to convince the U.S. and European nations to join a campaign to end Israel’s policy of nuclear ambiguity. It has, however, received some support at the United Nations.
 
In 2010 a UN resolution calling for a nuclear-free Middle East singled out Israel for criticism, while ignoring Iran, which is suspected of developing a nuclear weapons program, and whose former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad constantly threatened to wipe Israel off the map.

Iran General: 'Syria Will Leave Israel in Flames'

Category: News
Created on Friday, 30 August 2013 06:18
Syrian Tanks - ReutersIran’s army chief of staff, General Hassan Firouzabadi, echoed the remarks of Iranian officials who have declared that “any military action against Syria will drive the Zionists to the edge of fire,” Islamic Republic News Agency  quoted.
 
"Any new (military) operation in the region will leave behind a lot of damage, which will be of interest to no one except the Zionists," Firouzabadi said after warning that the conflict would not be limited to the region.
 
The Iranian General’s remarks are a direct response to reports of possible US-led military strikes against Syria, Iran’s major regional ally, in response to their alleged use of chemical weapons on civilians in Damascus last week. The UN continues probing Syria chemical attack sites and UN chief Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday his investigating team will report back this week.
 
And although, the U.S. was determined to strike Syria last week in response to Syria’s “international war crimes,” the West has become reluctant to strike just yet.
 
Possible reasons may stem from intimidation by Iranian threats that claim, “Syria would be a graveyard for Americans” and that “every American soldier should bring a coffin.” These were the remarks of the commander of the Al-Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Qassem Suleimani, which were publicized by Lebanese Al-Mayadeen television network on Wednesday.
 
Iran's most decorated general, Hassan Firouzabadi concurs that "the US, Britain and their other allies will face losses by marching their armies into the region and Syria."

Syria: If US Attacks Us, We'll Attack Israel

Category: News
Created on Monday, 26 August 2013 19:04
Syrian Tanks - ReutersAs talk and rumors of an impending Western attack against Syria mount, a top Syrian official said Monday that if attacked, his country would react – against Israel.
 
Speaking to an Arabic-language radio station operated by the United States, Syria's Deputy Information Minister Halaf Al-Maftah said that Israel would face not only Syria in the event that the US, Britain and France attempted to unseat Bashar al-Assad. A coalition consisting of Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, and Syria would respond to any attack against Assad with a response against Israel. In addition, terrorist groups in Syria and Lebanon would attack Israel with full force.
 
Al-Maftah added that Syria has “strategic weapons” that it would use in its attack on Israel. He did not specify what those weapons were.
 
“Syria is ready to deal with all scenarios,” said Al-Maftah. “We consider these declarations of a possible attack as a form of psychological warfare and pressure on Syria. We are not worried about them. We hope that those threatening us will listen closely to what we are saying. We believe that the only solution for the Syrian issue is a political one,” he added.
 
In recent days, the U.S. has sent warships off Syria's coast, with the assumption being that they were waiting for word from the White House to attack Syria and remove Assad from power. Over the weekend, the U.S. Navy expanded its presence in the Mediterranean Sea with a fourth cruise-missile-armed warship.

EU and Israel: German Anti-Israelism and anti-Semitism

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Friday, 23 August 2013 10:39
anti-Israel boycottersThe EU boycott should not have been a surprise. Interview with Susanne Urban, a German historian, who elucidates on the situation.
 
“Anti-Semitism was officially delegitimized in Germany after its surrender in 1945. This happened first in public areas such as politics, economy, culture, art and later on in society at large. Public debates and the social environment show however that since the late 1990s, anti-Semitism is expressed again more openly in manifold variations. Contemporary anti-Semitism has a solid base in the German mainstream.”
 
Dr. Susanne Urban, a German historian, heads the Historical Research in the International Tracing Service (ITS) Bad Arolsen. Before that, she worked for five years at Yad Vashem. She has also published a number of books.
 
“Several studies in recent years gave us more insight into levels of German anti-Semitism. In 2008, all parliamentary parties agreed to appoint an expert group. It was charged with obtaining an understanding of how far anti-Semitism had permeated German society and how to combat it more effectively. The ten experts were also asked to present recommendations regarding education and training of educators.
 
“The assignment stressed that findings concerning levels of anti-Semitism should be connected to questions about Germany’s democratic stability. The experts also focused on post-Holocaust anti-Semitism and Muslim anti-Semitism.
 
“In August 2011, their report was published and presented. It stressed the importance of confronting ‘secondary anti-Semitism.’ One major aspect of this is that people refuse responsibility for the Holocaust. This reflects a variety of widespread opinions. Included is that Germany is the victim or even hostage of survivors and that Holocaust compensation payments are sometimes denounced as a robbery committed by ‘The Jews.’
 
“This opinion is fueled further nowadays by those Germans who promote multiple types of self-victimization. This phenomenon expresses itself for instance as: ‘We were victims too but never got compensation.’ Victims and perpetrators are often inverted. In 2008, more than two-thirds of Germany’s population were annoyed to different degrees by recollections of Nazi crimes and their victims.
 
“The study also found that in 2010, secondary anti-Semitism was shared by 40% of Germany’s population. An identical percentage considered that Israel behaves like Nazi Germany today. Secondary anti-Semitism is not specific to Germany, but is found in high percentages in Poland and Hungary as well. In the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, these figures are much lower.
 
“Anti-Zionism as one variety of anti-Semitism often manifests itself as ‘criticism of Israeli politics, strategies and actions.’ It is found in all spheres of German society, be it Leftist or Rightist, Muslim or Christian. Anti-Zionism and secondary anti-Semitism often overlap for instance by making comparisons between Nazis and Israeli politics or between Holocaust victims and the Palestinians. This is also used to deny contemporary responsibility for Germany’s history or commemoration of the victims. Anti-Zionist attitudes do not differ if one is ideologically on the left, right, or a liberal.
 
“The older a person gets, the more primary and secondary anti-Semitism gain ground. Anti-Semitic prejudices and images decline from Middle to High schools. Males show more prejudice than females concerning both primary and secondary anti-Semitism. But there are no such differences regarding anti-Zionism.
 
“People who have a migrant background and those who don’t only differ slightly in their anti-Semitic and anti-Israel views. The researchers stressed that anti-Zionism is always extremely emotionalized, while the detractors of Israel view themselves as rational and factual. Other murderous conflicts such as the one in Syria, or even genocides such as in Rwanda do not result in such heated discussions if at all.
 
“A second survey was published in October 2012 by the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, a foundation linked to the Social Democratic party. It researched mainstream anti-Semitic attitudes more thoroughly. These researchers also identified anti-Semitism as a problem in the core of German society. Anti-Zionism was not researched to a great extent. The study however, emphasized that anti-Semitism is also expressed via anti-Israel images and stereotypes.
 
“Large minorities agreed to different degrees with statements such as, ‘Without the Holocaust, Hitler could be characterized as a great statesman,’ ‘National Socialism had its good elements,’ ‘National Socialist crimes are exaggerated by historiography’ and ‘Jewish influence is too high.’
 
“A majority of the interviewed agreed partially or totally to other statements such as, ‘Jews use the Holocaust for their own purposes,’ ‘Compensation does not help victims but a Holocaust industry,’ ‘I am fed up with being confronted about German crimes against the Jews,’ and ‘I am annoyed that crimes against Germans such as allied bombings and expulsions, are always seen as smaller crimes than the Holocaust.’
 
“In their conclusions, the authors of both studies agree that Holocaust education can be an important tool against primary anti-Semitism, but not against secondary anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.” Urban adds: “History leaves traces in later generations. It is not possible to define them in detail. Major questions remain about how to improve education as part of the battle against prejudices highlighted in the studies. Empowering students against contemporary anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism must be included in teacher training and in curricula.”
 
Dr. Manfred GerstenfeldDr. Manfred Gerstenfeld
The writer has been a long-term adviser on strategy issues to the boards of several major multinational corporations in Europe and North America.He is board member and former chairman of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and recipient of the LIfetime Achievement Award (2012) of the Journal for the Study of Anti-Semitism.

Polio Virus and the Contamination of Israel's Aquifers

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 07:03
Polio VirusThe polio virus has been found in Israel's water. Its source is not hard to find. The Health Ministry has decided to innoculate 200,000 Israeli children living in the south of the country. This is just the beginning.
 
Israel gave up Gaza, and the Hamas genocidally rocketed pre-1967 Israel-Sderot and Ashkelon.  Israel gave up the civil administration of the Palestinian Authority; the Palestinians Arabs responded with the Intifada.
 
Today, there is a more insidious attack at play. On 3 June 2013, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported:
 
“In Israel, wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) was isolated from sewage samples collected on 9 April 2013 in Rahat, southern Israel.  . . .  Genetic sequencing and epidemiological investigations are ongoing to determine its origin. Preliminary analyses indicate the strain is not related to the virus currently affecting the Horn of Africa.”
 
Wikipedia states that:
 
“Three serotypes of poliovirus have been identified-poliovirus type 1 (PV1), type 2, (PV2), and type 3 (PV3) - each with a slightly different capseid protein.  All three are extremely virulent and produce the same disease symptoms.  PV1 [the type found in Israel] is the most commonly encountered form, and the one most closely associated with paralysis.”
 
Medical News Today explains:
 
“What causes polio? Polio is caused by the poliovirus, a highly contagious virus specific to humans.  The virus usually enters the environment in the feces of someone who is infected.  In areas with poor sanitation, the virus easily spreads through the fecal-oral route, via contaminated water or food.  In addition, direct contact with a person infected with the virus can cause polio.”
 
On 3 July 2013, Israel's newspaper Haaretz reported:
 
"Almost 90 percent of sewage from Palestinian towns in the West Bank flows into the environment untreated, contaminating the groundwater and 162 kilometers of streams, according to a report prepared by the Israel Parks and Nature Authority.
 
"The report, prepared for the Environmental Protection Ministry and the Civil Administration in the West Bank, is based on water samples taken from various locales in 2012.  It found that some 50 million cubic meters of sewage flow into the environment from Palestinian towns every year.  Only 5 million cubic meters go to treatment plants, some of which are substandard.  This affects Israel as well as the West Bank, since the polluted streams flow into Israel.. .
 
Israel has tried to cope with the problem by building treatment plants near the Green Line separating Israel from the West Bank and treating the contaminated water once it enters Israel.  But the facility built to treat the Hebron Stream − the most polluted of all − can’t handle the volume of waste it receives.  Contaminated water reaches nearby communities, emitting a stench and attracting mosquitoes."
On 11 July 2013, Arutz Sheva reported:
 
"Traces of the poliomyelitis (Polio) virus are continuing to appear in sewage treatment facilities in southern and central Israel according to the (Israeli) Health Ministry."  The central areas where the virus has been detected include the Lev Hasharon (Tulkaran-Tel Aviv) area, Modi'in (Green Line), Ramle (Green Line), Tel Aviv, Ashdod (south of Tel Aviv).  The southern areas are Rahat, Be'er Sheva.
 
None of this Palestinian contamination of Israel should come as a surprise because in February 2012, the State of Israel Water Authority, in a report entitled "The Water Issue Between Israel and the Palestinians," (see http://mfa.gov.il/MFA_Graphics/MFA%20Gallery/Powerpoint/Water-IsraelPA.pps) stated:
 
“The Palestinians constantly breach the [Olso Water] agreement, as shown in the following:
1.    [Omitted  not relevant to this immediate issue.]
2.    The Palestinians do not treat their sewage which flows freely in the [West Bank] streams and into [pre-1967] Israel, contaminating the [pre-1967 Israel] environment and the [pre-1967 Israel coastal] aquifer en route.
3.    The Palestinians are not developing any new water source, either through sewage treatment, or desalination (also in contradiction of the [Olso] Water Agreement, M.L.).”
The key topographic/geologic fact is that what is termed the 'West Bank' is the mountains of Judea and Samaria. And any Palestinian untreated sewage water introduced into the  aquifers of the Western salient of the mountains of Judea and Samaria gravitationally migrates underground westward into the aquifers of pre-1967 Israel.  Geologically, there is no functional impermeable dividing line between the political pre- and post- 1967 Israel.  Hence, it is impossible to stop Palestinian Authority untreated sewage water from  contaminating pre-1967 Israel.
 
All the contaminated polio clusters in central Israel are in line with the general westward flow of the contaminated sewage water from the PA.  This makes it very probable that the polio now being discovered in these areas and in southern Israel is from the northern and southern lobes of the area.  And the ceding of Israeli civilian jurisdiction over  Palestinian Authority sewage is a direct result of the Oslo Accords.
Is the Palestinian Authority purposefully and knowingly contaminating Israel's aquifers with sewage?  Israel has begged the Palestinian Arabs for years to install sewage treatment plants at no cost to them and with funds from abroad.  But the Palestinian Authority has refused to build anything except one small sewage treatment plant.  Given that Palestinian Arab sewage is gravitationally bound to migrate westward into the pre-1967 Israel coastal plain, Palestinians (and Israelis!) could easily have predicted the biological diseases that this untreated sewage water would cause to pre-1967 Israel: Polio, for one.
 
Israel could define this as a possible instance of what the Geneva Convention terms Genocidal War Crimes. Israel and its civilians are being attacked with a form of biological warfare.
The Israeli cabinet debates destroying future Iranian genocidal nuclear warfare a thousand miles away.  Somehow the same Israeli cabinet is impotent to stop current Palestinian Authority  bio-warfare only 3 kilometers away.  In fact, Israel may yet reward the Palestinian Authority's  bio-warfare with more land!  .
 
Can anyone imagine the cries of “Zionist Biogenocide” against Israel if it were to contaminate the Palestinian Authority aquifers the way the Palestinian Arabs are doing to Israeli aquifers? .”
The Iranians see Israel's total impotence and appeasement of the Palestinian bio-warfare, and calculate that Israel will be just as impotent and appeasing when they gain their long sought-after nuclear weapoon capacity..
 
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For more information, please visit www.marklangfan.com
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, who often writes on security issues, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com.

Anti-Jewish Chants At Turkish Rally Elicit Concern

Category: News
Created on Monday, 15 July 2013 08:43
Turkish protests -ReutersThe American Jewish Committee (AJC) is calling on authorities in a German state to investigate threatening anti-Israel rhetoric, including chants of “Down with Israel” and “Israel be cursed” at a rally last week in support of Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan.
 
“We are horrified that supporters of Prime Minister Erdogan are using political protests in Germany to fan anti-Israel sentiment,” said AJC Berlin Director Deidre Berger. “Stoking the flames of anti-Semitism through denunciations of Israeli policies is dangerous.”
 
The organization called on state authorities in North Rhine Westphalia to investigate the degree to which the anti-Israel rhetoric at the pro-Erdogan rally was public incitement. “We call on German politicians and civil society leaders to speak out and condemn the anti-Israel agitation, which can only complicate current attempts to improve strained Israeli-Turkish relations,” Berger said.
 
The Turkish-language chants at the rally were brought to public attention by Lale Akgun, a former member of the German parliament, who witnessed the demonstration and reported it on her Facebook page. German television confirmed the report, adding that the anti-Israel chants were loud and frequent.
 
Tens of thousands of the estimated 3.5 million German residents of Turkish descent, the largest such community outside of Turkey, have participated in large demonstrations in recent weeks regarding the current disturbances in Istanbul.
 
At a June 22 rally in Cologne an estimated 40,000 demonstrators protested the Turkish government’s response to the peaceful protests against a building project in Gezi Park. In Duesseldorf on July 7 an estimated 25,000 demonstrators voiced support for Erdogan’s policies.
 
German government officials have criticized Erdogan, a frequent visitor to Germany, for making appeals to the Turkish-speaking community in Germany to maintain close ties with Turkey.
 
The demonstration in Duesseldorf follows public remarks in Turkey by representatives of Erdogan’s AKP party, who blamed “Jewish interests” for the ongoing demonstrations in Turkey.
 
Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay claimed that the Jewish Diaspora is behind the demonstrations in Turkey and that Jews are responsible for negative media reports about Turkey. Istanbul Mayor Ybrahim Melih Gökcek tweeted that the protests in Turkey are “a game of the Jewish lobby.”
 
The AJC hascondemned the anti-Semitic remarks of senior Turkish officials, including Erdogan, and called on responsible world leaders to speak out.

A Mystery Solved

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 29 June 2013 11:46
Hezbollah-FightersWhy do the Arabs reject the legitimacy of Israel as the State of the Jewish people?  The answer to this question transcends politics. Indeed, it is somewhat mysterious.
 
Beginning on the level of politics, there are two ways by which a state may obtain legitimacy, de jure and de facto. In democratic times, de jure legitimacy is usually based on popular ratification of a state’s Constitution. Moreover, those who draft the Constitution should derive their authority, directly or indirectly, from the people.
 
Now, it happens that Israel does not have a written Constitution. Instead, it has a hodgepodge of Basic Laws enacted intermittently by the Knesset. Israel’s first Basic Law: The Knesset, was enacted in 1958, ten years after the founding of the State.  Until then, there was no fixed term or tenure for the Knesset. Each session determined its own longevity!
 
Another Basic Law: Israel Lands (1960), provides that ownership of state lands may not be sold or transferred to non-state owners, which places in the transfer of land to the PLO-Palestinian Authority. Be that as it may, since only about five percent of the land in Israel is private property (contrary to the rabbinical principle that “there is no Jew who does not own four cubits in the Land of Israel”), and since the law defines “lands” as including “houses, buildings, and everything that is permanently connected to the land,” Jews are little more than tenants of the State. Indeed, judging from the manner in which various Israeli governments have surrendered Jewish land to the Palestinian Authority, it would seem that the Land of Israel belongs not to the people of Israel but to their rulers.   So much for Basic Law: Israel Lands.    
 
Some other Basic Laws and their initial dates are: The President of the State (1964); The Government (1968); The State Economy (1975); The Army (1976); Jerusalem, Capital of Israel (1980); The Judiciary (1984); The State Comptroller (1988).
 
A most significant aspect of Israel’s Basic Laws is that their passage does not require the affirmative vote of even a majority of the Knesset’s membership. In fact, Israel’s most significant Basic Laws: Human Freedom and Dignity, was enacted by a vote of 32-21, hence with less than half of the Knesset’s membership voting! Nevertheless, this hodgepodge of Basic Laws is deemed the equivalent of a “Constitution”! Be that as it may, this so-called Constitution has never been ratified by the people—the practice of democratic states. One may therefore wonder about the legitimacy of Israel’s government? Is it de jure or de facto?  The people of this country do not really know. How could they without a bona fide constitution which they were called upon to ratify by lawfully authorized representatives?
 
Here I must emphasize a fact hardly known to most of the people of this politically misguided nation, that the Proclamation of the State of Israel of 1948 prescribed a Constituent Assembly to draft a Constitution. The Assembly was elected and appointed a Committee to draft a Constitution for the fledgling State. A draft Constitution was submitted to the Committee by Dr. Leo Kohn, but never came to pass. It failed passage because the representatives of the secular parties, which dominated that Committee, objected to the provision that the President of the State had to be Jewish. The secularists objected that such a provision was or would be deemed racist!
 
Now we can begin to understand the arcane reason that Arabs refuse to recognize the legitimacy of Israel as a Jewish state. Why should they when Israel does not have a bona fide constitution—a constitution that has not only been ratified by the people, but one that is distinctively Jewish?  On the other hand, is some sort of mystery at work in Israel?
 
Perhaps it’s this: The recognition of Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state by the Arabs requires the rulers of this state to act like proud, Torah-oriented Jews. The defining and paramount goal of Torah-oriented Jews is not mere security—the uninspiring bourgeois goal of Israel’s current Prime Minister. To have a place among nations preoccupied with comfortable self-preservation is not the reason for Israel’s existence.
 
No! No! Israel differs from every other nation because, like no other nation, Israel was created to reveal the infinite wisdom, power, and graciousness of God in every domain of existence. The fulfillment of this exalted goal requires the establishment, in the Land of Israel, of a Torah-oriented Government, one who’s Constitution presents to mankind the model of a nation in which freedom dwells with righteousness, equality with excellence, wealth with beauty, the here and now with love of the Eternal.
 
Prof. Paul EidelbergProf. Paul Eidelberg
Prof. Paul Eidelberg (Ph.D. University of Chicago), former officer U.S. Air Force, is the founder and president of the Israel-America Renaissance Institute (I-ARI), www.i-ari.org, with offices in Jerusalem and Philadelphia. He has written several books on American and on Jewish Statesmanship. His magnum opus The Judeo-Scientific Foundations of American Exceptionalism: Today’s Choice for the “Almost Chosen People" is in process of publication. Prof. Eidelberg lives in Jerusalem.

Anglican Leader to Visit Kotel in 5 Day Mideast Visit

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 25 June 2013 06:33
Pope with Anglican leaderThe leader of the world's Anglicans is to make a five-day visit to Israel, Egypt, Jordan, his office said in a statement.
 
Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, the spiritual leader of the Church of England, was to meet with religious leaders, visit holy sites and see community projects, said Lambeth Palace, according to the AFP news agency.
 
It will be his first visit to Israel since his enthronement in March as leader of the world's 80 million Anglicans.
 
The trip comes after Welby visited Rome on June 14 and met with Pope Francis for the first time, amid efforts to reconcile Anglicans and Roman Catholics.
 
"Archbishop Justin is making this trip early in his ministry because of the significance of the region, the importance of the relationships that his office has there, and because he is keenly aware of the particular pressures on the region at the moment -- not least the devastating conflict in Syria, and its impact more widely," Lambeth Palace said in a statement, according to AFP.
 
In Jerusalem, he will visit the Western Wall, the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Temple Mount.
 
He will also meet with the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, patriarchs and church leaders.
 
He will be staying with Suheil Dawani, the Anglican bishop in Jerusalem, who will accompany him on all his visits there.
 
In Cairo, Welby will meet Pope Tawadros II, the head of Egypt's Coptic Church, and Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, the grand imam of Al-Azhar, the top Sunni Muslim authority, according to AFP, 

Austria Withdraws Peacekeeping Force from Golan Heights

Category: News
Created on Friday, 07 June 2013 20:47
Peacekeepers Force from Golan HeightsAustria is pulling its United Nations peacekeeping force from the Golan Heights, the government said in a statement released Thursday.
 
Austria accounts for about 380 of the 1,000-strong UN force monitoring the Israel-Syria ceasefire line in the Golan Heights.
 
“Freedom of movement in the area de facto no longer exists. The uncontrolled and immediate danger to Austrian soldiers has risen to an unacceptable level," the Austrian chancellor, Werner Faymann, and his deputy, Michael Spindelegger, said in a joint statement.
 
The announcement came hours after Syrian rebels seized the Syrian-controlled section of the Quneitra crossing early on Thursay.
 
A Filipino peacekeeper was also wounded during the fighting, a Philippine military spokesman said.
 
The soldier suffered a leg injury from an artillery or mortar shell that landed at Camp Ziouani, a logistics base for the UN Disengagement Observer Force, said Lieutenant Colonel Ramon Zagala.
 
"This morning's developments show that a further delay (in pulling out soldiers) is no longer justifiable," the Austrian statement said.
 
The head of United Nations peacekeeping confirmed earlier Thursday that shots had been fired in "incidents" on the Israel-Syria ceasefire line in the Golan heights, where Israeli radio reported a crossing point falling into the hands of Syrian rebels. Syrian government forces retook the position.
 
"We are following the situation in the Golan extremely closely, it is very sensitive," the head of UN peacekeeping operations Herve Ladsous told reporters in Paris, according to the AFP news agency.
 
"We have adjusted the stance of the UN force (in Golan) in real time, taking particular account of the security of our staff."
 
Ladsous added that "there were shots," but would not confirm the report that the Syrian rebels had taken control of the crossing point. "It is in the interest of the international community that the UN force is able to continue its work in favor of regional stability."

Hizbullah Gives Hamas 'Eviction Papers' from Lebanon

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 30 May 2013 07:59
Village in southern LebanonThe head of Hamas in Lebanon, Ali Barakha, was informed by Hizbullah that his people were no longer welcome in the country, and that Hamas members should evacuate the country immediately, Israel Radio reported Thursday. The message raised the possibility that the two Islamist groups could end up fighting each other in Lebanon, as each vies for influence with opposing parties in Syria, analysts said.
 
Syrian rebels have been receiving assistance from the Sunni-oriented Hamas terror group, while the Shi'ite-affiliated Hizbullah terror group has been helping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces in the ongoing civil war in Syria.
 
Hizbullah is aiding Assad as a proxy of Iran, the main backer of the Syrian despot, while Syrian rebels, seeking to unseat Assad, have turned to Sunni Muslim groups in the Middle East for help. Saudi Arabia is Sunni and fears Iran's increased domination.  Assad himself is a member of the Alawite cult, considered heretical by both Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims.
 
Recent reports said that hundreds of Hizbullah terrorists have died in fierce fighting on the Syria-Lebanon border, as units of the Syrian army and terrorists battled Syrian rebels for control of the area. Many of the deaths occurred in the Syria-Lebanon border town of Al-Qusayr, a city of over 40,000, which over the past two years has been turned into a war-torn danger zone. It is not known how many Hamas terrorists fought in those battles, but it is thought to be a substantial number by analysts, as both rebels and the Syria army placed a great deal of importance on the battle.
 
Reports of the Hamas “eviction” by Hizbullah appeared in the Arab press on Thursday, based on information supplied by Syrian rebels, Israel Radio reported, adding that there had been no independent confirmation of the story.
 
In a separate interview Thursday, Barakha denied the story, saying that Hamas and Hizbullah worked together for the benefit of Lebanon.

Israel’s Two-state “Solution” Pyrrhic Victory

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Monday, 06 May 2013 22:31
stand-by-israelEither Netanyahu really believes the "Two-State Solution", or he is just pretending he does because it looks and feels good.
 
In 280-279 BCE, Greek King Pyrrhus' army suffered irreplaceable casualties in defeating the Romans at Heraclea and at Asculum. King Pyrrhus soon lost the war against the Romans. The term "Pyrrhic Victory" describes situations where "by winning the battle, you lose the war."
 
From 1993-2013, Israel suffered irreplaceable casualties from implementation and indoctrination of the Two-State Solution. But the Two-State Solution’s "irreplaceable casualties" described in this article are not the obvious casualties - the hundreds of “irreplaceable” Israelis (may they rest in peace) who have been murdered by the Palestinian terrorists (may their names be erased.)
 
The Two-state “irreplaceable casualties” I am referring to here are the victims of the attempts to make Israel "look good" by talking peace, those generations of Israeli and American Jews who have been brainwashed into promoting the Two-State Solution without fully understanding its existential dangers. In the end, Israel momentarily looks "great," but nobody can ultimately defend Israel by fighting for its security on the battlefield of public opinion. So, in the end, Israel will lose, and lose totally.
 
Let's talk turkey. Either Netanyahu really believes the "Two-State Solution", or he is just pretending he does because it looks and feels good. If he believes it, he's suicidal, Israel is suicidal, and Israel is finished. That's an article for a different day.
 
But, if Bibi doesn't really believe in the Two-state “solution,” then he is confusing the heck out of millions of Israeli and American Jews who, for the most part, think Bibi really means it.
 
So, while the Israeli government is touting "Peace, Peace, Peace," Israeli and American college kids aren't being taught "The PLO hasn't ever changed its destroy-Israel covenant", or "West Bank 'Demilitarized' Katyushas will destroy Tel Aviv" or "Israel will have no water because the Palestinians will divert every drop of West Bank water."
 
All the kids are hearing is the coma-inducing mantra "Israel supports the Two-State Solution." For, to say otherwise, you are "Against peace" and a "Warmonger." What 19-year-old American Jew studying for good grades in an Ivy-League College and in his right mind wants to be “more Israeli than the Israelis”?
 
So, that's how hundreds of thousands of uneducated, brain-washed kids soon become millions of uneducated, brain-washed voting and donating adults. 
 
The problem is that by indoctrinating, aka brainwashing, kids to believe in a Two-state solution, Israel has created generations of kids, and adults, who don't understand why Israel has not already created a Palestinian West Bank State. For, “If it’s so wonderful, only Israeli ‘intransigence’ is stopping the solution.” All Jewish kids understand is the Israeli PR job of the alleged benefits of the Two-state 'solution', and not the Two-state dangerous reality. Consequently, Israel has permanently lost millions of Israeli and American Jews who would have been ultimately needed to defend Israel's failure to create a West Bank Palestinian state only because they have only been taught the delusional imagined benefits of “Peace."
 
But, Israel's decades of “succeeding” at "talking the peace talk" is exactly where Israel ultimately loses, and self-defeats itself. By only educating generations of the Two-state BS PR, and of not the real existential dangers, Israel doesn't now have the grass-roots backing it needs to back-out of the suicidal Two-state solution. Hence, the argument has now morphed into, "Israel doesn't have the American Jewish support necessary to scuttle the Two-state solution." So, by looking good for the minute, Israel has irreversibly locked itself into a catastrophic Two-state solution train wreck. For, when the time comes for Israeli leaders to tell the truth that the Two-state solution is Israel’s destruction, there won’t be any American Jews who believe them.
 
And in Israel, by Israel "preparing itself for painful concessions," Israel has lost generations of Israeli voters who know only "the peace process is the only path." Hence, instead of Israeli voters having a balanced, rational, and full understanding of the situation, all they know is to vote center or left-of-center. In and of itself, this has created an inescapable political fact that only insures Israel can't stop itself from committing the Two-state solution suicide. 
 
“On the other side of the ledger,” the ‘moderate’ Palestinian Authority (let alone Hamas) is unabashedly and unabatedly brain-washing their toddlers to wear suicide bomb vests to murder Israeli civilians. The American rabbi David Samson was prophetically correct when he literally and figuratively stated “They [the Arabs’] are born with Molotov cocktails in their hands.” Based on the latest Palestinian Authority Official TV, the only nit change would be “The Arabs are born wearing suicide vests filled with ball-bearings and rusty nails.” 
 
In conclusion, with Israeli PR “victories” like the “Two-state solution,” who needs military defeats? Either, Netanyahu starts talking the straight truth about the Two-state “solution” suicide, or Israel will be forced into a Two-state suicide exactly because nobody will understand the reasons to stop it.
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com.

Israel Bows to Openly Anti-Semitic UNESCO

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Monday, 29 April 2013 08:10
Destroyed menorah archiveGazans destroy a World Heritage Site to build a port and no one cares, but Jerusalem's sites are still described as "endangered" - because they are in Jewish hands. There's more, much more.
 
The Anthedon seaport, the oldest port of Gaza with a continuous history from 800 B.C. to 1100 A.D., with Roman ruins, Hellenistic and Persian constructions, was in 2012 designated an international heritage site by UNESCO (UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization). A few days ago, the military wing of Hamas, Izz ad-Din al-Qassan Brigades, destroyed part of the harbor to expand its military training in the area.
 
And UNESCO stood silent.
 
Is this the same UN agency to which Israel just granted a historic role in the supervision of the old city of Jerusalem? In a mad and suicidal deal, Israel has agreed to allow UNESCO to inspect sites in Jerusalem, expecially the Temple Mount, in exchange for the postponing of five Palestinian-sponsored resolutions critical of Israel.
 
UNESCO is pursuing a diabolical Arabized geography which opens the door to a Jüdenrein Judea, a de-Judaized “holy land”.
 
Under Israel-UN deal, the Old City of Jerusalem and its walls will continue to be listed by UNESCO as “endangered” World Heritage sites! This is the biggest lie that refused to die and it can inflame the region.
 
Irina Bokova, head of UNESCO, sent a message to the Palestinian Authority “on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People”, in which she proclaims the support for "the Palestinian cultural industry" (!).
 
UNESCO has adopted the Arab-Islamic propaganda and declared that Rachel’s Tomb and Hevron’s Cave of the Patriarchs are “Muslim mosques”. In a report on science, UNESCO forcibly converted the Jewish physician Maimonides to Islam  posthumously, calling him “Moussa ben Maimoun”.
 
Does Israel really need the approval of this corrupted and evil agency?
 
UNESCO's robber barons are sanctifying the global campaign aimed liquidating the legitimacy of the Israeli regime.
 
In 2009, UNESCO designated Jerusalem as “capital of Arab culture,” working with Palestinian Authority officials to protest against what they described as “the Israeli occupation of Holy Jerusalem".
 
During the Second Intifada, UNESCO condemned Israel for “the destruction and damage caused to the cultural heritage in the Palestinian territories” as “a crime against the common cultural heritage of humanity.”
 
However, UNESCO remained silent when a Palestinian mob destroyed Joseph’s tomb, the third major Jewish religious shrine, and built a mosque on the site.
 
UNESCO's own intifada goes back to November 20, 1974, when under Arab pressure, UNESCO voted to exclude Israel from any regional group.
 
In 2001, UNESCO promoted the “Cairo Declaration Document for Jerusalem Antiquities Preservation,” which falsely accused Israel of destroying Islamic antiquities on the Temple Mount - this accusation an attempt to divert attention from massive Palestinian Arab crimes against archeology and history.
 
The Palestinian Arabs want also to use UNESCO to prohibit and restrict Jews from worshipping at Hevron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs. In the Arab "International Committee for the preservation and the promotion of the Old City of Hevron” you find also Boutros Boutros-Ghali, former Secretary-General of the United Nations and Federico Mayor, former Director of UNESCO.
 
UNESCO funds Hitlerism in the Arab world. Zayzafuna, the Palestinian Authority magazine for children, included an essay submitted by a teenage girl in which Adolf Hitler is presented as a positive figure to be admired, because he killed Jews in order to benefit the world.
 
Since August 2011, the magazine is financed by UNESCO and the MDG Achievement Fund, another UN foundation funded by the Spanish government.
 
In the Palestinian textbooks funded by UNESCO, "Palestine” is shown to encompass all the Jewish State, the Jewish holy sites (such as the Temple Mount) have been erased, and Arab “martyrdom” is praised. In these texts, Jews are described as “cunning”, “locusts” and “wild animals”.
 
UNESCO, in 2003, financed the renovation of the Alexandria library, where a copy of the anti-Semitic booklet “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” was soon prominently displayed.
 
I can go on with this detailed list of cultural assassinations, but it is enough to understand that UNESCO is one of the most active soureS of anti-Semitism in the world. Why did the Israeli authorities choose to capitulate to this despicable institution? Why did the Israeli government hand the keys of Jerusalem's heart to the UN?
 
By grantng UNESCO's wish, Israel boosted the Palestinian cultural Intifada. The Jews have to stop playing according to their enemies’ ever-ready guillotine. Otherwise, Israel has no chance to win this centennial war.
 
Under the Israel-UNESCO deal, the Temple Mount is a more desolate and abandoned place. For now, the proto-Nazi Palestinian Arabs are winning the war to rewrite history.
 
Arutz Sheva extends its best wishes to Mr. Meotti and his wife on the birth of their second son this week. Mazel tov!
 
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He is at work on a book about the Vatican and Israel.

EXCLUSIVE: Israel Vanishing from Scotland Libraries

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Saturday, 13 April 2013 21:59
Israel Vanishing from Scotland LibrariesOne of Scotland’s councils has just implemented a boycott of Israel after comparing the country to apartheid South Africa.
 
The Clackmannanshire Council declared it would resist all economic and political support for Israel in order to “end suffering in Palestine”. In Scotland, once known as the only European country which has no history of state persecution of Jews, a region is officially dedicated to the eradication of the Jewish State as a malevolent, “settler” and foreign entity.
 
Last year the Scottish University of Dundee banned water from Eden Springs on the campus, because - it claimed - “it steals water from the Salukia spring in the occupied Syrian Golan, where it is bottled in the illegal Israeli settlement of Katzrin”.
 
Another Scottish provincial council near Glasgow, West Dunbartonshire, in 2011 probibited the purchase of English translations of Israeli books and the distribution of these books in public libraries throughout the council's jurisdiction.
 
One's memory went back to the German spring of 1933, when students, professors and librarians worked on a list of “degenerate” Jewish books. The list included Stefan Zweig, Erich Maria Remarque, Thomas Mann and Heinrich Heine. In the largest event outside Berlin, 18,000 Jewish books were destroyed
 
It is two years since the Dunbartonshire Council prohibition made the headlines. What is the current status of Israeli books in the Scottish libraries?
 
The Dunbartonshire decision marks the first time that a region in Europe has been cleansed of the presence of Israeli books. It does not matter what ideas are contained in these books, it is the bare fact of their origin which is enough for them to be banned. It seems that the shocking announcement worked.
 
In the library’s catalogue, David Grossman appears with just two titles, bought before the banning edict; Amos Oz is present with two and Abraham Yehoshua with one, as are Nobel Laureate Shai Agnon and Yoram Kaniuk.
 
There are no entries at all for Batya Gur, Dorit Rabinyan, Sami Michael, Naomi Ragen (a U.S. born writer who lives in Israel), Yehuda Amichai, Orly Castel-Bloom, Dan Pagis, Emil Habibi and Michal Govrin.
 
No results for any Israeli academic who published books after 2011 or pro-Israel booklets like those of Alan Dershowitz.
 
No entry for Meir Shalev, who published many novels in english.
 
In the two years after the ban-the-books decision, the Scottish council did not purchase any book written by Israeli authors, but welcomed into its shelves anti-Semitic publications such as “Mornings in Jenin” by Susan Abulhawa, Ilan Pappe's “The Forgotten Palestinians”, Sari Nusseibeh's “What is a Palestinian State Worth” and a pamphlet titled “The Case for Sanctions against Israel”, a kind of guide to the BDS movement.
 
The latest books A.B. Yehoshua's “Friendly fire” or Aharon Appelfeld's “Until the Dawn’s Light” were not considered for acquisition, but the Scottish libraries recently bought a copy of the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion”, the infamous and false anti-Semitic pamphlet which still appears in the libraries' catalogue in the Victor Marsden's translation at shelf number “3058924” (to understand the severe implications of this decision, in Italy's public libraries the last editions of the “Protocols” are from  1938).
 
In August 2012, the Conference of European Rabbis appealed to Apple Inc to stop selling the Arabic-language version of "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" which was being sold via iTunes. Yuli Edelstein, then Israel's Minister of Public Information and Diaspora Affairs, supported the appeal.
 
They might be interested to know that the book because of which thousands of Jews were killed in Europe, used by Hitler as a manual in his war to exterminate the Jews and found in Palestinian suicide bombers' pockets, can be easily ordered in a Europe's public library. See under the "adult non fiction" section.
 
This is how the boycott of Israel works: a silent cutting off the Israeli cultural transmission from generation to generation. In a symbolic pogrom, a language, a nation, an entire body of literature have been eviscerated from a Scottish region's libraries, while the most lethal Judeophobic forgery appears again in Europe's cultural archives like during Herr Goebbels' time.
 
A northern European region succeded where Iran's Ahmadinejad failed: Israel is disappearing from people’s eyes and imagination.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He is at work on a book about the Vatican and Israel.

Israel Launches First Air Strike Against Gaza Since Truce

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 03 April 2013 09:24
FileIsrael launched its first airstrike on the Gaza Strip on Tuesday since the Egyptian-mediated truce ended November’s eight-day bout of fighting.
 
“Occupation planes bombarded an open area in northern Gaza, there were no wounded,” the Hamas Interior Ministry said in a statement.
 
An Israeli military spokeswoman confirmed there had been a strike in Gaza, but gave no further details.
 
The airstrike came in response to the firing of a projectile from Gaza, which exploded on Tuesday in an open area of southern Israel’s Eshkol region. The explosion did not cause any injuries.
 
The IDF said it did not immediately know if the projectile was a mortar shell or a rocket.
 
Earlier on Tuesday, a mortar fired from Gaza and aimed at Israel failed to cross the border and reach its intended destination.
 
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the projectiles.
 
Israel launched the 2012 Operation Pillar of Defense in November in an effort to root out the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza and bring about the end of the unremitting rocket attacks that had been launched against the Jewish state.
 
Israel carried out a series of targeted and highly surgical operations in order target the terrorists responsible for the attacks, all the while avoiding civilian casualties at all costs.

The Paradox of Obama's Visit to Israel

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 17 March 2013 17:32
obama-netanyahuUnlike Iraq or Afghanistan, a huge invasion is unnecessary to destroy Iran's nuclear facilities.
 
President Barack Hussein Obama's dangerous complacency and compromise with Iran has afflicted U.S. foreign policy for too long, causing incalculable damage to Israel's security and American interests in the region.
 
The truth speaks for itself: diplomacy does not work with states who sponsor and are purveyors of global terrorism and nuclear proliferation.
 
Only one result is certain: it gives the Iranians breathing space and time to continue their illicit program to achieve nuclear capability.  In real sense, endless diplomatic talks and lifting off of sanctions—will not bring the long-awaited message of peace and security in the Middle East.
 
However, even worse, Obama's unprecedented betrayals make no sense at all.
 
Obama has selected the least qualified anti-Israel nominee for secretary of defense in a half century and forced out General James Mattis because the superb combatant commander took the Iranian threat seriously.
 
This self-flagellating nonsense seems deeply rooted on Obama's strange combination of extreme narcissism, Marxism and his Muslim upbringing.
 
It appeared innocuous at first, but the steady influence of Muslim Brotherhood-led Team Obama in every nook and corner of the Arab Spring led to the Benghazi-Gate cover up- and that is very difficult to ignore.
 
Obama is self-obsessed in reaching a diplomatic nuclear breakthrough with Iran, an ill-contrived concession that the mullah-led regime has denied. Behind the scenes, however, Obama's secret nuclear deal with Iran garnered a rebuke from the ruling ayatollah.
 
The diplomatic snub will certainly bring more repercussions, one way or another. This is upsetting at least to Obama, forcing him reluctantly to go for an 'urgent' visit to Israel.
 
Despite the onerous political and diplomatic fiascos in his first term, the narcissistic U.S. president should not be taken lightly. Why is that?
 
A great deal of extreme narcissists are embittered, vindictive, detached from reality and cannot accept responsibility. Perhaps, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is fully prepared to effectively deal with an egocentric president, knowing full well that Obama can spin a conversation so quickly that it keeps you off balance and  you cannot challenge him.
 
Will it work? Egocentric demands upon the time and patience of others will be borne, but he will try to avoid fights when Israel is at its strongest moments. In short, what is good for Israel will be good for Obama's image, particularly at a time when the Nobel Peace Prize Committee, it is said, politely asked him to return the coveted peace prize.
 
 While there is no question that diplomacy has to be the preferred path, Obama believes that there is still time for a diplomatic deal with Iran- and that illusion is dangerous nonsense.
 
Containing a nuclear armed Iran implies a de facto recognition. Since there is no absolute guarantee that Iran will not pursue nuclear weapons in the future, Israel's security becomes more untenable. This policy of containment is irresponsible. for it would only create a dangerous nuclear standoff that is enormously costly and unpredictable .
 
In any case, it is clear that Obama's misguided and feckless foreign policy is to blame.
 
It is inconceivable therefore, that despite western efforts to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, the Washington foreign policy establishment still wants to talk more when direct negotiation is not possible. It is the height of absurdity, that despite his alleged show of support, Obama is undermining Israel's military capabilities instead of Iran's - the country which represents a clear and present danger to Israel's existence and the national interest of the U.S.
 
Unfortunately, Iran is playing a dangerous catch- 22 diplomacy along with its mentor, North Korea. The problems with these two rogue states  seem insurmountable, but in reality are not -  if the U.S. changes its strategic course.  
 
Enough time has been wasted on restraint and it seems that Israel is, indeed, determined to strike Iran when the time comes to fulfill its duty to defend itself. Moreover, Israel's restraint is in keeping with its desire not to cast itself unnecessarily as an aggressor . And for that matter, Israel does not need any Western assistance to attack Iran.
 
In any event, it is better for Israel to act like a fool  than to be caught off guard by a nuclear detonation over Tel Aviv. At this stage of the nuclear brinkmanship, there is no doubt that a positive outcome is only possible if Israel takes out the nuclear facilities in Iran.
 
Unlike Iraq or Afghanistan, a huge invasion is unnecessary to destroy Iran's nuclear facilities.
 
It will be a tremendous success, however, if Syria and Hizbullah in Lebanon is dealt with permanently first. Whichever comes first is moot and academic since it is only a matter of time and opportunity.
 
Mindful of the almost complete destruction of Iranian military assets in Sudan and Gaza during the Operation Pillar of Defense, Hizbullah does not want to ignite a direct confrontation with Israel - for fear of wiping out  thousands of smuggled Iranian-made missiles and chemical weapons inside Lebanon; at the time when Tehran is talking the talk and duping the West.
 
But know this: Israel, as the only undeclared nuclear armed state in the Middle East, can - theoretically - also be unpredictable. Once again, it is highly possible that a civilization-altering development may  again stun the world into disbelief and mute Israel's enemies, sending a brief shockwave across the Middle East.
 
Yet despite the importance of this development, the mainstream media would be the last to cover the story after it happened. As former Military Intelligence Chief Brigadier-General (Res.) Amos Yadlin said at the AIPAC convention in Washington, a military action against the Iranian nuclear program "is not a war. It is a one-night operation."
 
Israeli officials also said Netanyahu would look for reassurances that the U.S. would prevent Syria's extensive stocks of chemical weapons - nicknamed "Arms R' Us" by Israeli intelligence - from falling into the hands of al-Qaeda or Hizbullah.
 
Incessant, anti-Semitic rhetoric and condemnation surely would follow, but consider what a one nighttime operation will do for regional peace and stabilizing oil prices about which the world's economy is so sensitive.
 
In the past, western media outlets enjoyed a monopoly on outrageous bashing of Israel. This time the information war is in Israel's favor in dealing with distorted information in almost all social media networks, including you tube.
 
Although the consequence of an imminent war with Iran is highly predictable, it will be difficult at first to accept, let alone believe, that Israel's high technological advantage makes success possible. Perhaps, it may be the main reason why Washington has been dilly-dallying around  with regard to support of its staunch ally, Israel.
 
Israel knows this: the US will not act beyond what it perceives as its own national interests. And if Iran miscalculates the extent of Israeli resolve, the geo-political outcome is awfully predictable.
 
In the end, Israel's technological or military innovation could easily shift the balance of power back heavily into America’s favor by altering the equation of the Iran nuclear game.
 
Something has to be done.
 
Dr. Joe TuzaraDr. Joe Tuzara
Born in Manila, American by choice, the author is a former clinical research-physician-general surgeon for Saudi Arabian, Philippine and American healthcare systems and currently an American freelance writer as well as op-ed contributor.

The ‘Mustache Mingle’: Obama fantasizes of disguise to hang out in Israel

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 16 March 2013 12:01
Bemoaning the loss of his anonymity AFPIf you happen to walk past a café in Tel Aviv over the next week and see a familiar face  – with an odd-looking mustache and perhaps “mingling” more than your average café-goer – it may be someone you know pretty well.
 
The scene could be U.S. President Barack Obama carrying out his “fantasy.”
 
Bemoaning the loss of his anonymity, the president said on Thursday that during his upcoming visit to Israel he wishes he could don a fake mustache as a disguise, and mingle.
 
"I’d love to sit at a cafe and just hang out," he said in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2 broadcast on Thursday.
 
"Sometimes I have this fantasy that I can put on a disguise, you know, wear a fake mustache, and I can wander through Tel Aviv and go to a bar and have a conversation, or go down to a university and meet with some students in a setting where it wasn't as formal," Obama said.
 
Obama said he missed the "spontaneous interactions" he once had while travelling.
 
"You can’t just slip out and interact with people without having a bunch of guys with machine guns with you," Obama said.
Obama's three-day trip to Israel and the West Bank begins Wednesday.
 
This is not the first time Obama suggested a mustache look. At a fundraiser last June, he joked that he had tried on a fake mustache early into his presidency to try to convince the Secret Service to let him walk through Central Park on his own, New York-based Enstarz entertainment website reported. 

Obama's Timetable

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 10 March 2013 16:22
Obama and Chairman AbbasJust before his visit to Israel, apparently the Obama administration has leaked that Obama is coming here not for a photo opportunity, but to seriously move the defunct peace talks forward. He wants, among other things, a timetable of when Israel plans to withdraw from Yehuda and Shomron, Judea and Samaria...the "West Bank".
 
Mr. President, according to my math and some websites, Abraham was born 1,948 years after creation (yes, Israel was re-established in 1948 and doesn't that bring a smile to your face?). When he was 55 years old, Abraham was commanded to go to Canaan...modern day (and ancient) Israel. So, the first Jew to enter Israel was 2,003 years after creation...or...to put it in more familiar terms, 1758 BCE.
 
So that makes our presence here in the land of Israel...oh, about 3,771 years, give or take a few (very few) when the Jews left for famine or whatever, and certainly, there have been Jews here continuously, for 2,000 years plus.
 
That is longer than any other nation alive today, certainly longer than any Arab/Palestinian Arab/Muslim - or even Christian claim to this land. It is documented, substantiated, proven. It is in the ground, buried deep and rediscovered regularly by anyone who digs deep enough to find the history waiting to be uncovered.
 
But that isn't what you asked, was it? You asked about when we'd be leaving. I did some calculations, using common sense, the current political situation, my own knowledge and research, and figured out that we'll be pulling out of Yehuda and Shomron (what you call the West Bank),  etc. - about one week before never; two days after the end of the world.
 
We'll be here, Mr. President, long after you have turned to dust, your memory not even a breeze in the wind.
 
We'll be here, Mr. Obama, until the end of time. This is what God has promised and this is what we promise ourselves, our children, our grandchildren and theirs.
 
You want a timetable for when we'll withdraw - I've given it to you.
 
Now, let's talk about that other timetable - the one for peace in the Middle East.
 
It will happen, Sir, when the Palestinians want it, and not before. When they learn to stop dancing in the streets when they succeed in murdering children and exploding buses.
 
Peace will come when they have no desire to fire rockets at us and no interest in demanding one thousand Arabs at a value of the life of one Jew.
 
In other words, Mr. Obama - not in your lifetime, sorry.
 
So, really, if that's why you are coming to Israel - perhaps you can save the gas, save the time. Unless, of course, you are bringing Jonathan Pollard home which is, as our Prime Minister said recently, long past due.
 
Assuming you still plan on coming, if I were you, I'd go back to Plan B and begin working on what pictures you want.
 
Paula R. SternPaula R. Stern
Paula R. Stern is the Founder and Documentation Manager of WritePoint, a technical writing company.

'Erdogan Uses Denigration of Israel to Walk Islamist Street'

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 02 March 2013 12:25
Erdogan and Hamas leader MashaalThe Simon Wiesenthal Center decried UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon’s silence at a UN conclave in Vienna as Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan charged that Zionism is "a crime against humanity," lumping it together with racism, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.
 
“We witness very frequently the alienation of the ‘other’ in various countries instead of efforts to understand the culture and beliefs of the ‘other,’” Erdogan said. “Just like Zionism, anti-Semitism and fascism, it becomes unavoidable that Islamophobia must be regarded as a crime against humanity.”
 
“Certain politicians’ defamation of a religion or a sect by mass communication tools only makes pre-conceived notions bigger and deepens the gap,” he added.
 
Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a leading Jewish International Human Rights organization, responded to the outrageous remarks saying, “Erdogan is exactly the type of bigoted politician he bemoaned in his speech.”
 
“It has been clear for some time that Prime Minister Erdogan has chosen to walk in the hateful footsteps of Iranian President Ahmadinejad and use the denigration of Israel and the millions of proud Zionists around the world to establish his credentials with the Islamist street,” Cooper said. “His anti-Semitic bombast is degrading 500 years of relations with the Jewish people and putting Turkey's Jewish community at risk of attack from extremists."
 
"Frankly however, we are deeply disappointed that the UN Secretary General, the world's leading diplomat sat through the attack in silence. We note that the US, UK, Canada and Australia declined to attend in the first place, but that both Germany and France were in attendance. We urge the leaders of those two countries along with all NATO members to publicly denounce this hate-mongering," he added.
 
"With the upsurge of anti-Semitism raging across Europe, such a slander, left unchallenged will only further embolden anti-Semites everywhere," Cooper concluded.
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanayahu responded Thursday, calling Erdogan’s remarks “sinister and mendacious.”
 
"This is a dark and libelous statement the likes of which we thought had disappeared from the world," the prime minister said.

Al-Aqsa Brigades fire rockets into Israel as tensions rise

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 26 February 2013 08:37
Katyusha missileA rocket exploded in southern Israel on Tuesday in the first such attack by militants in the Hamas Islamist ruled Gaza Strip since a truce ended a week of cross-border fighting in November, Israeli police said.
 
The rocket caused some damage to a road near the city of Ashkelon but no injuries, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.
 
“An explosion was heard in the Ashkelon region experts searched areas experts and found one rocket that struck, damaging a road but causing no injuries,” Rosenfeld said.
 
Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a militant group in Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s West Bank-based Fatah movement, claimed responsibility for the rocket strike, the Palestinian Ma’an news agency said. No casualties were reported. 
 
The strike came after the death on Saturday of a Palestinian detainee in Israeli custody which triggered protests in the occupied West Bank.
 
In the latest violence there, Israeli troops shot and wounded five Palestinians during confrontations with protesters in the Bethlehem area on Monday and a 15-year-old boy was in critical condition.
 
The disputed death of Arafat Jaradat, buried in a funeral in the Hebron area attended by thousands on Monday, and a hunger strike by four other Palestinian inmates, has stoked tensions ahead of a planned visit next month by U.S. President Barack Obama.

Hagel 'Doesn't Recall' Remark on Israel Controlling State Dept.

Category: News
Created on Monday, 18 February 2013 17:19
former senator Chuck Hagel - ReutersSen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that he has accepted a new disclaimer from President Obama’s defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) disavowing one of his many offensive statements about the state of Israel.
 
Graham told “Fox News Sunday” that he received a new letter from the beleaguered nominee in which Hagel claimed he “did not recall” the odious statement-- allegedly made during a speech at Rutgers University in 2007--  in which he argued that the State Department is controlled by the Israeli Foreign Minister’s office.
 
“Well, if in fact that’s true, that would end the matter,” Graham said, adding, “I just take him at his word unless something new comes along.”
 
“I'm glad he answered my question about a very disturbing comment he allegedly made,” he told Fox News.
 
Graham joined fellow Republicans in filibustering Hagel's nomination on Thursday, marking the first time a defense secretary has been filibustered in the Senate.
 
Graham is continuing to seek more information from the Obama administration this week on the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. embassy in Bengazi, Libya, which resulted in the death of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.
 
The senator warned last week that he would hold off approval of both Hagel and John Brennan, Obama's nominee for CIA director, until he receives more answers.
 
During the interview, however, Graham indicated that he would support ending debate on Hagel when the Senate returns from recess next week, despite considering him “one of the most radical and unqualified choices” to be defense secretary.
 
Hagel’s numerous other anti-Jewish and anti-Israel comments include the former senator claiming that “the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people" in Congress into “doing dumb things”; that the Jewish state is keeping the “Palestinians caged up like animals” and that Israel has kept the Palestinian people “chained down for many, many years.”
 
He has further come under fire for his feeble position on military action against Iran, his willingness to open direct talks with Hamas, his opposition to declaring Hizbullah a terrorist organization, as well as a long list of other highly provocative issues and associations. 

U.S. President Barack Obama to visit West Bank, Jordan and Israel

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 05 February 2013 18:04
Netanyahu speaks to ObamaPresident Barack Obama will stop in the West Bank and Jordan on his trip to the Middle East in the coming months on a trip which will also include his first visit as U.S. leader to Israel, the White House said Tuesday.
 
Officials had earlier disclosed Obama would visit Israel this Spring and the White House later confirmed that the trip would also involve travel to Jordan and the Palestinian territories.
 
Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, meanwhile, discussed the matter in a telephone call on Jan. 28, the official said.
 
“The start of the president’s second term and the formation of a new Israeli government offer the opportunity to reaffirm the deep and enduring bonds between the United States and Israel and to discuss the way forward on a broad range of issues of mutual concern, including Iran and Syria,” the official said.
 
“Additional details about the trip - including the dates of travel - will be released at a later time.”

John Kerry at State: Disaster for Israel

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 03 February 2013 14:22
U.S. Senator John KerryD-MA - AFPPresident Obama’s decision to choose Senator John Kerry as his next Secretary of State and its approval by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will prove to be a disaster for Israel.
 
The choice of the American Jewish establishment to vehemently protest the expected nomination of former Senator Chuck Hagel while granting Kerry a free pass for his anti-Israel behavior follows their longtime pattern. Hagel is a Republican who has a history of marking foolish remarks regarding Israel and has long been seen as an independent thinker on Middle East policy with a non-interventionist outlook.
 
Kerry, however, is the much bigger problem for Israel.
 
Hagel as SecDef will be tasked with handling military issues. Kerry will be in a position to effect policy as it impacts Israel, set an overall tone for US in the Middle East and be a key player in future negotations.
 
When it comes to criticizing Democrats who are hostile to Israel the Jewish elites have a history of weakness. From Jesse Jackson to Jimmy Carter to Barack Obama, Democrats are treated with kid gloves and given the benefit of the doubt, while pro-Israel Republicans are never given their due praise.
 
When Kerry ran for president, he was vetted by the so-called pro-Israel community in the U.S. and little was made of his attitudes toward Israel because he had, for the most part, steered clear of controversy.
 
Kerry’s record since his presidential campaign tells a different tale. It was clear Kerry would not run for president again and his policy shift on Israel was ignored.
 
What’s worse is Kerry’s attitudes on Israel are still being ignored by the pro-Israel community.
 
Even Kerry’s failure to sign the December 20, 2012 letter in support of continuing sanctions against Iran has not been a matter of concern for pro-Israel activists. [See http://www.adl.org/PresRele/Mise_00/6462_00.htm] And this even though 73 of Kerry’s fellow senators signed the letter. [See http://www.jta.org/news/article/2012/12/21/3115146/73-senators-sign-aipac-backed-letter-urging-continued-iran-restrictions]
 
Kerry’s Israel problem goes back much farther than his troubling attitude towards Iranian sanctions.
 
When Kerry decided to take over for former President Jimmy Carter as the front man for Democratic criticism of Israel, he enlisted the U.S.'s first Muslim member of Congress for help.
 
 
Kerry was chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee when he stated on March 04, 2009 at a Brookings Institute address:
 
 
"nothing will do more to make clear our seriousness about turning the page than demonstrating – with actions rather than words – that we are serious about Israel freezing settlement activity in the West Bank For decades American presidents, Democrat and Republican alike, have opposed new settlement activity and recognized that the settlements are an obstacle to peace.. "
 
It should be apparent that when it comes to pressuring Israel on Israeli settlements John Kerry plans to pick up at Foggy Bottom where James Baker left off.
 
Kerry’s idea that the settlements are the main problem echoes the rhetoric of Yasser Arafat’s successors Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad. In his March 2009 remarks Kerry even adopted the Arab view that Jerusalem is one of “the big three issues.”  But Jerusalem is no issue – it is Israel’s capital.
 
The view that Israel and the Palestinian Arabs equally share blame for the continuation of a decades old conflict is just another part of Kerry’s troubling perspective.
 
While Kerry was on his February 2009 junket to the Middle East, it was no mere coincidence that Rep. Keith Ellison was in Gaza at the same time. This was a coordinated effort by senior Democrats to demonstrate to Israel’s government that the pro-Israel attitude of the Bush-Cheney years were over.
 
The Forward reported on April 10, 2009 that “...he (Ellison) presented the findings of his February 19 trip to Gaza at a Capitol Hill event sponsored by the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee.
 
The second-term congressman did not mince words when describing the hardship that Gaza residents are facing in the aftermath of the Israeli attack, or in addressing Israel directly on what actions ought to be taken to ease the suffering. “I come here with one message only,” he told the audience: “Open up the crossings, open up the crossings, open up the crossings.” Later in his speech, Ellison once again chose the triple-repetition technique when calling on Israel to “stop, stop, stop the settlement expansion.”
 
Kerry provided Ellison with the cover he needed for his verbal onslaught against Israeli settlements.
 
At the Democratic Convention in 2012 Kerry ignored the decision of his party leadership to remove Jerusalem from their platform and instead opened his podium speech by attacking Romney for his “neo-con advisors” and then proceeded to quote Benjamin Netanyahu out of context.
 
 
We all know what Kerry meant when he said “neo-cons” – it is code speak for pro-Zionists. Kerry’s words show that he will be hostile to the very existence of Israeli towns in the suburbs of Jerusalem. Democrats consider these “settlements” to be part of the “Occupied West Bank”and he will label them as such.
 
John Kerry’s leadership at State will be the beginning of a new effort by the Obama Administration to pressure Israel to surrender territory to the Palestinian Authority, deny Israel’s sovereignty in Jerusalem, negotiate with Hamas and accept a hostile Palestinian State along its vulnerable borders.
 
Israel and its American supporters are in for a very tough time with Kerry and they seem to have no idea.
 
Moshe Phillips, AFSI
Moshe Phillips is a member of the executive committee of the Philadelphia Chapter of Americans for a Safe Israel / AFSI. The chapter's website is at: www. phillyafsi. com and Moshe's blog can be found at phillyafsi. blogtownhall. com.

Hizbullah: Israeli Attack Aimed at Syria

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 02 February 2013 14:59
Russian-made SA-17 anti-aircraft missilesBoth Hizbullah and Russia condemned Israel a day after the attack on a convoy carrying Russian-made SA-17 anti-aircraft missiles from Syria to Hizbullah terrorist bases along the border with Lebanon. In a statement, the Lebanese terror group said that the attack was “barbaric,” and “openly reveals [Israel’s] motives toward [unrest] in Syria over the past two years and the criminal thinking aimed at destroying Syria and its army.”
 
The “barbaric aggression” requires “a massive, widespread condemnation campaign by the international community and all Arab and Islamic countries,” the statement said.
 
The real target of the attack, Hizbullah said, was “eliminating Syria's pivotal resistance and rejectionist role to pave the way for unfolding the chapters of a major conspiracy against [Syria] and against our Arab and Muslim peoples.”
 
On Saturday, Iran said that any attack on Syria would be considered an attack on Iran. “Syria plays a very key role in supporting or, God forbid, destabilizing the resistance front," Ali Akbar Velayati, a top aide to Iran's supreme leader 
 
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was quoted by Iran's semiofficial Mehr news agency as saying. "For this same reason, (an) attack on Syria is considered (an) attack on Iran and Iran's allies."
 
Russia, meanwhile, expressed “concern” over reports of the Israeli attack. "If this information is confirmed, then we are dealing with unprovoked attacks on targets on the territory of a sovereign country, which blatantly violates the UN Charter and is unacceptable, no matter the motives to justify it,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
 
On Thursday, Syria said that it was raising its security level on all its borders. Earlier, according to reports published in The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, American officials said overnight Wednesday that Jerusalem had informed Washington about the attack. According to the reports, Israel told U.S. officials it had launched an air strike on a convoy carrying Russian-made SA-17 anti-aircraft missiles from Syria to Hizbullah terrorist bases along the border with Lebanon.
 
Israel has not yet made any officials statement on the matter.

"Exposé: How Much Does the War On Israel Cost Europe?

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 22:16
mufti hitlerOver the past year, the Coordination Forum for Countering Anti-Semitism monitored incidents worldwide. In 2012, 6 oof the 10 worst anti-Semithic attacks took place in Europe (the rest are shared among Iran, Yemen and United States).
 
Even more frightening are the new statystics about the popular feelings about the Jewish people in Europe. 
 
Amid the rise in hate crimes in France, the World Zionist Organization calculated the level of anti-Semitism among French citizens. The survey revealed that more than 40% of the French population holds anti-Semitic beliefs. The survey also found that 47% of the population believes that "French Jews are more loyal to Israel than the country where they live." 
 
The Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project found that 46% of Spanish residents held an unfavorable view of Jews. Meanwhile, 47% of Germans are of the opinion that “Israel is exterminating the Palestinians,” according to a poll undertaken by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, affiliated with the German Social Democratic Party.
 
44 % of Italians are prejudiced or hostile toward Jews, according to a study recently issued by the Italian Chamber of Deputies’s Committee. 
 
You can find the same trend all over Europe. Half of the population holds deep anti-Jewish feelings. 
 
Britain has just included Israel on a list of 28 countries whose human rights record is of "concern" to the government. It's the same Britain that in 1989 refused to sell gas masks to Israel because they could be used for "offensive purposes". In 1991 a subsidiary of Thames Water Plc., the British company that supplies water and sewage services to most of London, refused to do business with Israel because it has "many and valued Arab clients". 
 
How much is Europe investing in Israel's destruction? By financing the Palestinian war and sponsoring the Arab rejectionist anti-Semitism, Europe is reawakening the centuries-old beast of Judeophobic bigotry. European taxes are used to fund anti-Semitism of an intensity unseen since Nazi Germany.
 
The European Union just announced a contribution of EUR 14 million for a programme in Gaza. Most of this aid goes through UNRWA.
 
Many terrorists work for the UN agency,  such as Issa al Batran, who was in charge of Hamas rockets production and was also employed as a teacher in the UN schools. Or the UN Gaza’s schoolmaster, Awad al Qiq, who was the Islamic Jihad “rocket-maker”.
 
Food storage facilities in UNRWA's areas, funded by the European Union, have become munitions depots. UNRWA's employees transported weapons and terrorists by the agency ambulances.
 
Hamas interior minister, Said Sayyam, was also a math teacher for UNRWA. The schools administered by the UN have become madrassa for the war against the Jews.
 
In Jenin, UNRWA schools displayed images of “martyrs” responsubile for dozens of Israelis killed in Hadera and Afula.
 
Despite all this evidence, for the period 2007-2013 a total of €29 million has been allocated by the European Union to UNRWA's programme.
 
Among the recipients in Nablus of the European aid just approved there is also Al-Najah University, which serves Palestinian terror organizations as a stage for promoting their commitment to armed struggle. Many of Hamas' leaders in Nablus, including leaders of the Az Adin al-Qassam terrorist wing, began their involvement in the movement while students or professors at the university. The faculty also served as a recruitment center for suicide bombers. Brussels just approved for Nablus a 4-year programme with 4 million €.
 
Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority and the European Union recently met in Ramallah to discuss foreign aid in the next five years. The European Union just allocated €60 million to "support the Palestinian National Development Plan by helping the PA to finance its budget deficit and implement its reform agenda". This fund perpetuates the chronic Arab corruption.
 
In 1998 $20 million in European Union aid that was intended to provide "cheap housing for Palestinians" was used to finance luxury apartments for rich supporters of Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat.
 
The European Union also just made a contribution of €7.2 million to the payment of the December salaries and pensions of "83,800 Palestinian civil servants and pensioners in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip".
 
The Palestinian Authority routinely authorizes payments to the families of "martyrs" by using Europe's aid. The Palestinian Authority has introduced a new law which pays the families of suicide bombers out of its civil service budget.
 
In 2011, the European Union allocated €145 million for the Palestinian Authority's expenditures, €35 million for "institution building projects" and €22 million for support to public infrastructure. A further 11 million were allocated for the "private sector" and €8 million for "East Jerusalem initiatives", which means charging Israel of “apartheid,” “ethnic cleansing,” and creating a “model of terrorising a civilian population".
 
Europe's goal is to make Israel surrender Area C in Judea and Samaria, because as John Gatt-Rutter, the European Union Representative in Jerusalem said, there is "no viable Palestinian state without area C". Translated: Judea and Samaria must be "Judenrein", cleansed of any Jew. 
 
From 1994 to 2011, the EU donated €4.26 billion to the Palestinian Authority through various channels – and this figure does not take into account individual EU states’ donations to the PA. The EU has become the largest single donor to the Palestinians, contributing about €500 million ($720 million).
 
Europe also channels an ocean of money to the anti-Israel NGOs.
 
The Dutch government, for example, grants millions of euros to organizations such as Kerk in Aktie and the Interchurch Organization for Development Cooperation, which support a “general boycott” of Israeli products as per the policy of the Protestant Church of the Netherlands. The Interchurch Organization received money from the European Union (€5.3 million).
 
Diakonia, Sweden’s largest humanitarian NGO founded by five Swedish churches, financed programs “to commemorate the Nakba,” the Palestinian term for “catastrophe” which indicates Israel’s foundation in 1948.
 
The UK’s Christian Aid and Finland’s FinnChurchAid received millions from the EU to propagate the worst anti-Israel lies, including starving, torture, dispossession and siege.
 
Europe is also channeling millions of euros to leftist NGOs. These are just some of them: Addameer (207.000 $ from Sweden), Al Haq (426.000 $ from Holland, 88.000 $ from bailout-needing Ireland and 156.000 $ from Norway), Al Mezan (105.000 $ from Sweden), Applied Research Institute (374.000 $ from the European Union and 98.000$ from bankrupt Spain), Coalition of Women for Peace (247.000 $ from the European Union) and Troicare (2.000.000 $ from the European Union and 640.000 $ from UK).
 
These NGOs are so ambigous that the IDF just launched a raid in their offices in Ramallah.
 
There is a fourth way Europe funds Palestinian terrorism and anti-Semitism: school textbooks and television channels. This is a kind of “software” of the holy war against the Jews.
 
The textbooks funded by the European Union call for Jihad: “Palestine” is shown to encompass all the Jewish State, Judaism’s most holy sites (such as the Temple Mount) have been erased, the Jews are demonized and Arab “martyrdom” is praised.
 
In these texts, Jews are described as “cunning,” “locusts” and “wild animals.”
 
European Union officials just met with the Palestinians in Ramallah, Nablus and Hevron. And the EU allocated €5,000,000 for "a cultural programme".
 
EuroMed Heritage is a €17 million EU-funded programme, "which contributes to the exchange of experiences on cultural heritage, creates networks and promotes cooperation with the Mediterranean Partner Countries". Among these networks is the Palestinian television, which glorifies suicide attacks, anti-Semitism and Jihad. A poem just read by hosts of program on PA TV funded by the EU incited to terrorism on airplanes.
 
Shakespeare’s Shylock and his pound of flesh have caused shudders to many generations of Jews. By financing Islamic anti-Semitism with €500 million per year, Europe is now asking Israel for a new pound of flesh.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He is at work on a book about the Vatican and Israel.

Hagel: Israel is Keeping 'Palestinians Caged Up Like Animals'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 21:16
President Obama and Chuck HagelIn recently revealed comments, President Barack Obama’s nominee for secretary of defense Chuck Hagel made staggering accusations against Israel, alleging that the Jewish state is keeping the “Palestinians caged up like animals.”
 
Hagel was quoted as making the comments on January 12, 2003 by The Lincoln Journal Star, The Washington Free Beacon revealed on Tuesday.
 
The highly controversial nominee does not elaborate on the claim or explain how he believes Israel is keeping “Palestinians caged up like animals,” according to the Journal Star report. The comment is, however, consistent with his long anti-Israel and anti-Jewish record.
 
In 2007, he made a similar accusation, saying that Israel has kept the Palestinian people “chained down for many, many years.”
 
The former Republican Nebraska senator continues to claim, however, that an accurate assessment would illustrate his “unequivocal, total support for Israel.”
 
In The Journal Star article Hagel also condemned the Bush administration’s handling of the peace process and Iran, saying, “We’re not handling the Iranian situation the smart way. The worst thing we can do is try to isolate a nation.”
 
In a meeting with Sen. Chuck Schumer (D, N.Y.) last week Hagel came out against his previously held beliefs, claiming he now endorses isolating the Iranian regime over its nuclear program.
 
Following a 90-minute meeting at the White House last week, Schumer said Hagel would do “whatever it takes” to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
 
Hagel’s Senate confirmation hearing will take place on Thursday.
 
The Republican Jewish Coalition issued a statement upon first hearing of Hagel’s nomination, calling it “a slap in the face for every American who is concerned about the safety of Israel.”

Outcry in Israel over injection of Ethiopian Jews with birth control drug

Category: News
Created on Monday, 28 January 2013 18:04
Ethiopian migrants   -AFPIsraeli’s health ministry has come under fire for injecting Ethiopian immigrants women with a contraceptive drug without their knowledge or consent.
 
The allegations surfaced in December, when an investigative news program looking into the declining birth rate of Ethiopian immigrants to Israel uncovered claims that would-be migrants were told they would be refused entry to the Jewish state if they did not take Depo Provera contraceptive injections.
 
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) followed up on the allegations with Israel's health ministry, which this week released a carefully-worded response, warning that contraceptives should not be administered without explicit consent. 
 
On Sunday, Roni Gamzo, the director of the ministry of health in Israel, issued a formal directive instructing that gynecologists not to inject immigrants with Depo Provera. 
 
Ethiopian Jews are the majority of those given the drug, according to 2010 report by Isha le'Isha, a women’s rights organization.
 
U.N. News Agency IRIN quoted Hedva Eyal, the author of the report as saying: “We believe it is a method of reducing the number of births in a community that is black and mostly poor.” 
 
“It is indeed the first time that the state actually acknowledged that this procedure of injecting immigrant women with this drug, when they do not know the side effects and are given no other choice, is wrong,” Eyal said.
 
A health ministry letter has asked doctors to determine with patients “why contraception is being used in general and this one in particular and if she is asking of her own free will to prevent pregnancy and if she understands the side-effects.”
 
“Of course this should be done in a culturally appropriate way and if necessary through Ethiopian intermediaries or through medical translation services,” it adds.
 
While the letter contains no admission that Depo Provera was administered without consent, ACRI said it considered the ministry's response an implicit admission that such a policy existed.
 
“The way that ACRI regards this letter from the ministry of health is as an important recognition that the phenomenon was indeed occurring,” ACRI spokesman Marc Grey told AFP.
 
More than 120,000 Jews of Ethiopian origin live in Israel.
 
For centuries, Jews in Ethiopia were largely cut off from other Jewish communities, and Israel’s religious authorities only belatedly recognized them as members of the faith.
 
The move sparked two waves of immigration to Israel, in 1984 and 1991, but Ethiopian immigrants have struggled to integrate into Israeli society, despite massive government aid.

War with Israel Is the Dream of My Life

Category: Islam
Created on Sunday, 20 January 2013 20:16

Hisham Al-AshriEgyptian Cleric:  No Such Thing as a Christian Religion"

 

 

 

 

 

Transcript follows:

Egyptian Cleric Hisham Al-’Ashri: It Is the “Dream of My Life” to Wage War against Israel; There Is No Such Thing as a “Christian Religion”

Following are excerpts from an interview with Egyptian cleric Hisham Al-‘Ashri, which aired on Al-Tahrir TV on January 10, 2013. Al-‘Ashri, who recently returned to Egypt from the U.S., has established a committee for the promotion of virtue and prevention of vice.

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Interviewer:            Does the attack on the World Trade Center on September 11 constitute Jihad? Hisham Al-‘Ashri:   Well, it depends who did it. Jihad is only for Muslims. They even say “Jihad” in English because they have no equivalent.
[...]

I call on everybody to type in Google “911”, and then click. You will get an incredible amount of videos, documents, and documentaries made by Americans – not Muslims, Arabs, or people of Arab origin – proving that the Islamists had nothing to do with 9/11, unless they were targeted.

The two planes that hit the World Trade Center were military planes, not civilian ones.

Interviewer: So, those who led this…

They were controlled by…
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: By the US airforce.
[...]

Under Mubarak, Egypt did not have a war for 30 years. Israel, on the other hand, did not last for 30 days without a war. The U.S. did not last for three months without a war.

Interviewer:           That’s true.
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: England and France did not last for three years without a war.

Interviewer:           But these were not direct wars…
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: Yes, they were. America is fighting a direct war…

Interviewer:          I was referring to England and France.
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: They joined America in the Iraq war…

Interviewer:          They fought wars outside their borders.
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: They sent fighters to fight. Our concept of war is that it is great to live in peace, as long as you do not enter a war in which you will be defeated. Got it? When I do not engage in a war for 30 years, but I allow my enemy to have a war every 30 days – this is negligence.

Interviewer:           Does that mean you are calling us to wage a war against Israel?
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: It is the dream of my life to wage war against Israel, under the command of the state, the president, the regime, and the army. I will not decide all by myself to start a war.
[...]

There is no such thing as a Christian religion. Did Jesus come to prophesy the Christian religion?

Interviewer:           He came to prophesy his religion…
Hisham Al-‘Ashri: The Christian religion?

Interviewer: Or did he come to call people to monotheism?
[...]

Hisham Al-‘Ashri: In Islam, we believe that our religion is the true religion, and that the Muslims will enter Paradise. Out of love for the Christians, I call upon them to enter Paradise with me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Netanyahu to Obama: Only Israel Knows Its Own Best Interests

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 17 January 2013 17:02
BB - ObamaOnly the people of Israel can decide who will represent their best interests, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on Wednesday in remarks directed at President Barack Obama a week prior to the general election.
 
"I think everyone knows that the citizens of Israel are the only ones who can decide who will faithfully represent the vital interests of the state," he said.
 
His remarks came in response to an article by prominent Bloomberg columnist Jeffrey Goldberg in which he quoted Obama as repeatedly saying that, "Israel doesn't know what its own best interests are."
 
Obama, he wrote, appeared to see Netanyahu as a "political coward" who is completely "captive to the settler lobby," and whose ongoing “settlement” activity was moving Israel
"down a path toward near total isolation."
 
Goldberg, who is himself a vocal critic of Prime Minister Netanyahu, maintained that Obama “told several people that sort of behavior on Netanyahu’s part is what he has come to expect, and he suggested that he has become inured to what he sees as self-defeating policies of his Israeli counterpart.
 
 Although the U.S. would not cut off its aid to Israel, Obama was not likely to "waste his time on Mideast peace" and the Jewish state could soon notice a "significant shift" on the diplomatic front, he wrote.
 
Senior Likud MKs reacted furiously, accusing the U.S. president of "gross interference" in the upcoming election.
 
“This is gossip a journalist wrote, and the facts suggest that the opposite is true,” said Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan, who heads Likud’s response team. “Israelis expect their prime minister not to give in to pressure, even if it would give them applause in the United States.”
 
Netanyahu told reporters on a tour of an army base near Gaza that, "Over the last four years, we have faced tremendous pressure and we will continue to stand up for the vital interests of Israel and its security."
 
"We will do everything necessary to defend the security of the citizens of Israel in this area as well as in other areas," the prime minister said, in remarks broadcast by public radio.
 
Until now, there had been no official response to the article, which on Wednesday dominated national headlines.

Morsi Claims Anti-Semitic Diatribe Taken Out of Context

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 16 January 2013 18:14
Morsi 6 month laterEgyptian President Mohamed Morsi said on Wednesday that his virulent anti-Semitic comments, which he reportedly said prior to his election and which were condemned by the United States on Tuesday, were taken out of context.
 
"The president stressed they were taken from comments on the Israeli aggression against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, and stressed the need to put the remarks in the right context," said a statement from the president’s office issued following a meeting between Morsi and United States Senator John McCain on Wednesday.
 
In a TV clip released by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Morsi refers in a 2010 interview to "occupiers of Palestine" as "blood suckers and war mongers, and descendants of pigs and apes."
 
"We must resist them with all forms of resistance. A military resistance in Palestine against these Zionist criminals assaulting the land of Palestine and Palestinians," he says in the remarks to Quds Channel three years ago.
 
In Wednesday's statement, Morsi "stressed his commitment to the principles he has always insisted on, including full respect for religions, freedom of faith and religious practices, especially the heavenly religions.”
 
Morsi also "stressed the need to differentiate between Judaism and its adherents from (those who practice) violent actions against Palestinians."
 
He further "stressed the importance of building a strategic relationship between Egypt and the United States based on mutual respect and shared interests."
 
On Tuesday, Washington condemned Morsi's remarks and urged him to immediately clarify his views.
 
"The language that we've seen is deeply offensive," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said, adding "we think that these comments should be repudiated, and they should be repudiated firmly."
 
Morsi, who was a leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, came to power in June as the Arab nation's first democratically elected president, following the 2011 uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak.
 
Nuland said Washington had already raised its concerns about the television clip with Cairo, and stressed again that Congress, which has blocked part of $1 billion in extra US aid, was watching the new Egyptian leadership carefully.
 
"We completely reject these statements, as we do any language that espouses religious hatred. This kind of rhetoric has been used in this region for far too long," she told journalists. "It's counter to the goals of peace."
 
"President Morsi should make clear that he respects people of all faiths and that this type of rhetoric is not acceptable or productive in a democratic Egypt," added White House spokesman Jay Carney.
 
The two administration officials stressed, however, that since coming to office, Morsi had reaffirmed Egypt's commitment to the 1979 peace treaty with Israel.
 
He had done so "in both word and deed, and has proven willing to work with us toward shared objectives, including a ceasefire during the crisis in Gaza last year," Carney said.
 
Washington would judge Morsi by both what he says and what he does, Nuland added.

Exposé: Islamic Apartheid in Europe

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:26
tommy-robinsonIt has been called "Halal House". Islamically correct apartment complexes. It's the last frontier of Dutch multicultural policies that encouraged immigrants to live in parallel societies.
 
From the outside, the apartments of the Amsterdam neighborhoods of Bos and Lommer look like ordinary suburban blocks for married couples. But inside, the Dutch authorities furnished the houses in accordance with Islamic law.
 
The dining rooms and kitchens, for example, are divided in order to separate men and women, according to Koranic rules.
 
For the first time, a complex of two hundred houses in the suburbs of Amsterdam has been fully adapted to the needs of Muslims.
 
The apartments feature a cupboard for shoes and water for ritual ablutions. Also, satellite dishes on the roofs allow people to connect to the major television stations in the Islamic world.
 
The mayor of Amsterdam, Eberhard van der Laan, who was also the Minister of Integration, is determined to make his city "a model of multiculturalism". And this model is based on segregation.
 
Recently, the Dutch government established that, in the name of  "better integration", schools must give students a certain number of hours on homosexuality. This was decided by the Education Minister, Marja van Bijsterveldt.  The Amsterdam education curriculum doesn't mention the union between "a man and a woman," but "between two people of the same sex." The science textbooks have decided to change the definition of "couple". The initiative comes from the Noordhoff publishing house which prepared the biology textbooks for primary and secondary schools.
 
 
Amsterdam is also experiencing so-called "gay areas". The unusual signs have been installed at the entrances of a park in Amsterdam, Slotervaart, the place where Mohammed Bouyeri, the murderer of filmmaker Theo van Gogh, lived.
 
 
At the Montessori school Rietlanden/8th of Amsterdam there are two entrances, one for Dutch natives and one for immigrants. The measure was planned to "facilitate" their integration.
 
It's the same government that admits that "a third of the schools promote segregation." 680 schools in Holland are now composed of a majority of an ethnic homogeneity. A study by the Open Society Institute speaks of "concentration camp neighborhoods" for ten percent of the four largest Dutch cities.
 
30 percent of Dutch Muslims want sharia in the Netherlands, where 80 percent of children of immigrants still continue to "import" wives from their countries of origin, such as Turkey and Morocco. Separation between men and women is funded by the state. The Den Hommel pool offers lessons for Muslim men only. Sharia is implemented in the name of "non-discrimination".
 
 
Muslim lawyers in Rotterdam changed the rules of the courtroom, asking to be allowed to remain seated when the judge enters. They recognize only Allah. The court of Rotterdam has recognized the right to remain seated: "There is no legal obligation requiring Muslim lawyers to stand in front of the court, insofar as this action is in contrast with the dictates of the Islamic faith."
 
 
Everywhere in Europe there are hundreds of apartheid Islamic areas. In France, large swaths of Islamic neighborhoods are considered "no-entry" zones. There are 751 "Sensitive Urban Zones" (Zones Urbaines Sensibles) in the French government website with satellite maps and street demarcations. Including heavily Muslim parts of Paris, Marseilles, Strasbourg, Lille and Amiens.
 
 
In Germany, Chief Police Commissioner Bernhard Witthaut said that that Muslims are creating "no-entry" zones in cities across Germany at an alarming rate. The prestigious weekly magazine Der Spiegel, the voice of liberal journalism, published an essay titled "The role of Islamic Law in the German courts." Important elements of the law used in Saudi Arabia in the VII century have been merged with the German one.
 
 
A judge in Hannover rejected the divorce of a German woman married to an Egyptian who threatened to kill his raped daughter: "Muslims have a different concept of rape than Europeans", the judge said. A judge has ruled in Essen that Muslim students can not be forced to participate to swimming lessons: "Incompatible with their religion."
 
A judge in Dortmund, citing the Koran, determined that a father can beat his daughter who refuses to wear the veil. A prosecutor in Frankfurt denied a divorce to a Moroccan born in Germany, who for years was beaten and threatened with death by her husband on the grounds that "In the Koran it is allowed that the man punishes his wife."
 
 
German schools issued instructions to male teachers not to shake hands with Muslim girls after handing over their graduation documents. “This is haram (impermissible) in Islam". The Dutch Committee for Equal Treatment, a kind of Orwellian commission for equality, ruled that a teacher of Islamic faith may refuse to shake the hand of a man. Many Orthodox Jewish women also do not shake hands with men, but that would never be taken into consideration in a German school, and, in stark contrast, they have no plans to impose their way of life on others - not even on other Jews.
 
 
In Denmark, Sweden and England "Sharia Law Zones" already function as autonomous enclaves ruled by Islamic law.
 
 
In the Netherlands, Dutch judges ordered the authorities to release to the public a list of 40 "no-entry" zones. The most sensitive are in Rotterdam.
 
I spent a week there to understand the new Europe. Everywhere are casbah-cafes, travel agencies offering flights to Rabat and Casablanca, posters expressing solidarity with Hamas, or offering affordable Dutch language lessons. The Turkish Mevlana mosque is imposing. It has the tallest minarets in Europe, even higher than the stadium of the Feyenoord soccer team.
 
 
In Rotterdam I met Sylvain Ephimenco, a Franco-Dutch journalist who has been living in Holland for twelve years. For twenty years, he was the "Libération" correspondent, and is proud of his leftist credentials: "When I arrived here, during the 1960's, religion was dying, a unique event in Europe, a collective de-Christianization. Then the Muslims brought religion back to the center of social life".
 
 
The same Europe which falsely charges Israel of imposing apartheid on Route 60 in Judea and Samaria established Islamic segregation in its own midst. It’s not difficult to imagine how the confrontation between European atheistic apathy and Islamist theological turmoil will end.
 
Like the Berlin wall, the multicultural wall is separating Europe. But unlike communist slavery which was defeated by freedom, this time Europe could meet a different end.
 
 
As a German politician said: "If you put the Koran above the German constitution, then I can only say: Good night, Germany".
 
 
Good night, Europe.
 
Giulio MeottiGiulio Meotti
The writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary. He is at work on a book about the Vatican and Israel.

Jews Welcome Resignation of 'Unacceptable' Morsi Aide

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 08 January 2013 17:56
Essam El  ErianA leading Jewish group welcomed on Monday the resignation of a close adviser to Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi who last week called for Jews of Egyptian descent to return to Egypt and "leave Israel."
 
The official, Essam al-Erian, who is the deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, reportedly referred to Israel as a "brutal, bloody and racist" state that was guilty of "war crimes against humanity."
 
The Jews should return immediately to Egypt to "make way for the Palestinian people", he said, as he predicted that the Jewish state would disappear within a decade.
 
According to news reports, he submitted his resignation as a presidential adviser earlier today.
 
"We welcome the resignation of Essam al-Erian," said National Director of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Abraham H. Foxman.  "We hope that President Morsi and other Egyptian government leaders will now make it clear that the defamation of Israel and Jews has no place in the country's national dialogue."
 
On January 4, Foxman wrote to the Egyptian Ambassador in Washington, calling on the government to take action in the wake of al-Erian's remarks, which ADL described as "outrageous and alarming."
 
"This broad-brush negative stereotype of Jews by a senior Egyptian official was inappropriate, unacceptable and raises serious questions about the attitudes of some of Egypt's leaders towards Jews," said Foxman. "Essam al-Erian's resignation should be an example of the consequences for leaders who express such attitudes."
 
ADL's letter to Egyptian Ambassador Mohamed M. Tawfik expressed appreciation at attempts by government officials to subsequently clarify the official's remarks about Israel.  The League noted, however, that even some of the official government clarifications "contained troubling qualifications."  For example, Shura Council spokesperson Ahmed Fahmy was reported to have said about Jews that "hostility is their creed."

Israel will not exist within a decade, says Muslim Brotherhood official

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 02 January 2013 19:18
Essam el-Erian  APA senior Egyptian official, who also serves as an adviser to President Mohammed Mursi, said on Tuesday that Israel will cease to exist within a decade.
 
During an interview with private Egyptian television channel ONTV, the deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, Erian, attempted to explain a previous controversial announcement he had made.
 
In the statement he invited Egypt-born Jews to their home country, encouraging them to leave Israel to the Palestinians.
 
Erian said: the “ideology of Zionism” had ended in failure and “Palestine’s occupiers” should leave to make way for the return of the Palestinians. 
 
“Jewish occupiers of the territory of historic Palestine are an obstacle to the Palestinians’ right of return”, he said. “Anyone who can read the future can see that this project has a decade, less than a decade to go, and it is our faith that the people of Palestine can then return to Palestine”. 
 
All but a handful of the Egyptian Jewish community, once 80,000-strong, left the country after the Israel-Egypt wars of 1948, 1956 and 1967, many to Israel, notes the Telegraph newspaper. 
 
Erian’s latest comments have alarmed Israel, with the official Israel Radio station expressing “disappointment”.
 
According to Egypt’s private-owned newspaper “Youm 7”, Israel Radio blasted Erian, saying Israel has never questioned the legitimacy of the Egyptian state, and expects to be treated equally by Egypt, with which it has a peace treaty.
 
The backlash from Israel Radio was an altogether different response from other Israeli media outlets.
 
Earlier this week Israel’s Channel 10 welcomed Erian’s remarks inviting Jews to return to Egypt.
 
“After thousands of years since Egyptian Jews left Egypt, finally someone has called for their return”, the channel said, according to the Egyptian Al-Wafd newspaper.
 
“It is better for Jews to live in a country like Egypt rather than in a country contaminated by occupation,” Erian was quoted as saying in an interview with the local Dream TV network on Thursday.
 
He added that, “every Egyptian has the right to come back to Egypt, no matter what his religion”.
 
“Egyptian Jews should refuse to live under a brutal, bloody and racist occupation stained with war crimes against humanity”, Erian added.

Israel's Step-by-Step Legal Defense in the Hague

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Sunday, 23 December 2012 09:25
Israeli Air ForceIsraeli US Ambassador Oren has recently, correctly, and urgently warned that Israel has “to prepare for the possibility that they (the Palestinians) will take that step. We can’t discount it.”
The “step” Ambassador Oren is referring to is the upcoming State of Palestine legal attack on the State of Israel at either the International Criminal Court (ICC) (for war crimes) or the International Court of Justice (ICJ) where both are located at The Hague.
 
In fact, President Abbas has threatened to take action against the Israeli government at the International Criminal Court (ICC) of the $120 Million in tax revenues are not released to the state of Palestine.
 
As suggested below, the heart of Israel’s ICC/ICJ international legal defense is that the legal entity of“Palestine,” to which the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) recently authorized an “upgrade” in status, is only a name change for the legal entity of the genocidal murderous Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). Therefore, for the rest of this essay, I will call “Palestine”: the “PLO/Palestine.”
The 'PLO' isn’t 'Palestine' you laugh?  “Langfan’s gone crazy, again,” you say? Well, don’t bend yourself out of shape too much, too fast. In the recent November 29, 2012 UNGA “Question of Palestine” resolution, the exact text written by the lawyers of “Palestine” explicitly admitted that the “PLO equals the State of Palestine.”
The text of the UNGA resolution “A/67/L.28 Sixty-seventh session, Agenda item 37, Question of Palestine” explicitly stated:
 
“Recalling its resolutions 3210 (XXIX) of 14 October 1974 and 3237 (XXIX) of 22 November 1974, by which, respectively, the Palestine Liberation Organization was invited to participate in the deliberations of the General Assembly as the representative of the Palestinian people and was granted observer status;
"Recalling also its resolution 43/177 of 15 December 1988, by which it, inter alia, acknowledged the proclamation of the State of Palestine by the Palestine National Council on 15 November 1988 and decided that the designation 'Palestine' should be used in place of the designation 'Palestine Liberation Organization' in the United Nations system, without prejudice to the observer status and functions of the Palestine Liberation Organization within the United Nations system,” (For the full text of the actual November 29, 2012 UNGA “Question of Palestine” go to: www.marklangfan.com/plostateunresolutiontext.html)
 
Therefore, the PLO-proffered and passed “Question of Palestine” UNGA resolution text, in and of itself, is “Palestine’s” de jure, and legally conclusive “admission against interests” that the legal entity of the corpus of the “State of Palestine” is nothing other than the PLO in drag. You can put “Palestine” lipstick on the PLO pig, but it’s still the PLO pig. So, the good news is, “Palestine’s” colossal legal mistake provides Israel with an almost impenetrable ICC legal defense.
1. The ICC/ICJ would be recognizing the PLO/Palestine entity whose genocidal charter (unamended since 1968) explicitly calls for the destruction of Israel
Because if the “PLO equals Palestine", then “The PLO’s charter equals Palestine’s charter.” And, as Mr. William K. Langfan (I must disclose he is my father) has most excellently championed for over two decades, despite all the PLO/Palestine’s smoke and mirrors, the PLO/Palestine has never changed one letter of its genocidal 1964/1968 Charter.
 
So, Israel’s first legal step should be to force PLO/Palestine to prove the exact paper trail of the supposed charter amendments which have allegedly rid the PLO/Palestine’s 1964/68 charter of its genocidal murderous clauses.
 
Israel’s argument is simple: PLO/Palestine is an explicit and overt genocidal entity, and the ICC/ICJ allowing a genocidal entity to sue in the ICC/ICJ would make the ICC/ICJ into a direct partner in the PLO/Palestine’s genocide against Israel. In short, the ICC/ICJ’s allowing the PLO/Palestine to sue Israel would make the ICC/ICJ itself into a genocidal entity.
2. PLO/Palestine’s assertion of international jurisdiction would allow for an Israeli counter-lawsuit for all of the thousands of the PLO’s genocidal terror attacks on civilians
Good. Now, that the PLO/Palestine will have positively asserted jurisdiction somewhere, all of the PLO’s Jewish and non-Jewish civilian victims from 1964 to the present can sue the PLO/Palestine legal entity for the cold-blooded genocidal murders which the PLO directed and enabled.
 
If Israel doesn’t want to counter-sue for all the spilt Jewish blood, then Israelis and Jews everywhere can sue individually and collectively in class actions. So, anyone who has a relative who was killed or injured by a PLO bomb or terrorist should begin to marshal and to collect all their personal evidence of the loss of their loved one(s).
 
Jews everywhere should hire international lawyers who will sue the pants off the PLO/Palestine the second it steps foot in the ICC/ICJ. And again, all the Jews were murdered as a genocidal PLO/Palestine active plan that is continuing to this very moment.
 
3. PLO/Palestine’s ICC/ICJ lawsuit would allow for an Israel counter-lawsuit for PLO/Palestine’s terrorists acts, including the firing of katyusha rockets and suicide bombs against civilian targets in 1967 Israel which are all genocidal Geneva War crimes
All the hundreds of suicide bombs and the 15,000 rockets fired from Gaza since the Palestinian Authority took over Gaza were solely meant to target Israeli civilians. Therefore, under numerous Geneva War crimes, PLO/Palestine’s actions over the last 20 or so years are all pure genocidal war crimes.
 
The UNGA “Question of Palestine” Resolution explicitly claimed all of Palestine, including Gaza, is one juridical area. Hamas claims its interest in the PLO/Palestine State every bit as much as Fatah claims its interest in the PLO/Palestine State. Hamas and Fatah are only political parties of the PLO/Palestine State.
 
So, it’s like one part of the United States is controlled by the Republicans, and the other part of the US is controlled by the Democrats. It’s still one United States. So, if Hamas attacks Israel from one part of the PLO/Palestine, it’s still an attack from the single legal entity of the PLO/Palestine. And, it is the single legal entity of PLO/Palestine that can be held accountable for any and all Hamas or Fatah terrorist actions.
 
And, the fact that Abbas will claim he can’t “control” the Hamas part of Palestine will only show that the PLO/Palestine is not even a “state” to begin with.
 
Again, if Israel won’t sue, Sderot should hire a class-action lawyer who will sue the PLO/Palestine on behalf of the citizens of Sderot. Everybody within rocket range should collect all the pictures of all the damage to their houses so they can make a well-documented claim.
And then there’s the Israeli claim of “intentional infliction of emotional distress” from the PLO/Palestine’s genocidal war crimes. Sderot’s damages alone would exceed the value of the entire "West Bank". So, when Sderot gets a multi-billion dollar monetary award against PLO/Palestine, Sderot can seize the PLO/Palestine’s legal interest in Judea and Samaria as compeensation. Israel’s legal counter-claims of genocidal terrorism emanating from the PLO/Palestine of Gaza, Judea and Samaria will legally eviscerate any legal claim the PLO/Palestine has in the "West Bank".
 
4. PLO/Palestine’s ICC/ICJ lawsuit would allow Israeli legal counter-attack on PLO/Palestine’s violation of the Helsinki Water right rules and laws
The "West Bank" is a north-south running mountain ridge of the West side of Jordan Rift Valley that forms a single watershed with the pre-1967 Israel coastal plain. As such, the water rights of the West Bank/Israel coastal plain watershed are governed by the 1964 Helsinki International Water rules. Suffice it to say, the Palestinian Arabs have violated virtually every single legal element of the Helsinki water rules.
 
For example, the same way fresh rainwater naturally flows westward to pre-1967 Israel because of the mountainous topography, Palestinian toilet water also flows westward. So, the Palestinian Arabs have engaged in a “Jihad by toilet” by refusing to process, treat, and recycle their sinking rotten diseased toilet water.
 
The Palestinian Arabs adamantly refuse to treat their refuse water even though the money was available for the treatment plants to be built at no cost to thems. The Palestinians are thus purposefully destroying the common shared West Bank/Israeli coastal plain watershed and explicitly violating the heart of the Helsinki water rules.
 
There are so many other examples of Palestinian Helsinki violations it would take hundreds of pages to recount. In short, the Palestinians get more water from the Western Samarian aquifer than they got in 1967. So, the PLO/Palestine water claims will go nowhere. And, Israel can bankrupt PLO/Palestine by starting to exact from the Palestinian Arabs the true cost and“market value” of Israeli desalinated water which Israel now gives to them  at a cut-rate.
 
5. Additionally, at the ICC/ICJ, Israel can enter King Hussein’s 1969 Autobiography “My “War”with Israel” as evidence that Israel defensibly occupied Judea and Samaria after Israel was first offensively attacked by Jordan -  which will complement the UN Security Council Resolution 242’s true meaning
While most people generally think “Israel attacked first” in the 1967 War, few people actually understand that historically, Israel only attacked Egypt and Syria first, and did not attack the "West Bank" first. In fact, King Hussein first attacked Israel from Judea and Samaria because he thought Egypt had decimated Israel’s Air Force.
 
The key is the dead King Hussein can still testify in the ICC/ICJ as to the truth of these facts because King Hussein published an autobiography in 1969 where King Hussein recounted the 1967 War history exactly as I have described. The autobiography is call “Hussein of Jordan: My “War” with Israel.” The key chapter is Chapter 8 “Israel’s Great Offensive.”
 
Chapter 8 can be downloaded for free at www.marklangfan.com/husseinofjordanchapter8.html. And, the entire book can be emailed for historical use for free upon request. Please email mapmun@aol.com.
 
The vital legal point here is that King Hussein openly admits in his own autobiography that Jordan attacked Israel first, and this establishes a clear legal basis under which UN Security Council Resolution 242 can legally operate and protect Israel’s ownership in Judea and Samaria in perpetuity.
In conclusion, these are just some of the legal defenses that Israel can easily construct based on open source information. I’m sure Israel has much more detailed information in the secret files of all the terrorist genocidal actions committed by the PLO and Hamas which could be used to devastating legal effect at The Hague.
 
Most importantly, Abbas was the paymaster of the PLO terrorists who committed the 1972 Munich Olympics’massacre of Israel’s athletes. I would start with the documentary evidence exposing Abbas as the monster genocidal terrorist he truly is as “Exhibit A.”
 
mark langfanMark Langfan
The writer, has created an original educational 3d Topographic Map System of Israel to facilitate clear understanding of the dangers facing Israel and its water supply. It has been studied by US lawmakers and can be seen at www.marklangfan.com

defected General: Syria’s Chemical Arms Match Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 19 December 2012 07:00
Major-General Adnan SilluThe chemical weapons arsenal of the Syrian regime, believed to be one of the largest in the world, is a match for Israel’s alleged nuclear arsenal, the defected former head of Syria's chemical warfare program told Al-Arabiya on Monday.
 
Major-General Adnan Sillu, who defected from the regime earlier this year and was reportedly “party to top-levels talks” regarding the use of chemical weapons on both rebel fighters and civilians, said that the Syrian government had stashed chemical weapons in various cities, specifically in Homs and Aleppo.
 
“Syria’s chemical arsenal has reached similar levels to Israel’s nuclear weapons,” he told Al-Arabiya.
 
Sillu, who once led the army’s chemical weapons training program, warned in June that although the central storage sites for sarin and mustard gas are being guarded by thousands of Syrian Army troops, they could easily be captured by rebel forces.
 
“Probably anyone from the Free Syrian Army or any Islamic extremist group could take them over,” he said.
 
The Pentagon has drawn up plans for responding to possible scenarios involving Syria’s chemical arms, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Friday during a visit to Incirlik Air Base in Turkey, about 60 miles from the Syrian border.
 
The United States has become increasingly concerned that Syria’s stockpile of chemical weapons could fall into the hands of Islamist terrorists, rogue generals or other uncontrollable factions.
 
In recent days, the Syrian regime has fired more than a half-dozen Scud missiles at rebel forces trying to oust Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.
 
The move represents a significant escalation in the fighting, which has already killed more than 40,000 civilians in a nearly two-year-old conflict and suggests increased desperation on the part of the Assad government.
 
United Nations peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous said that the UN is sending kits to protect soldiers in the peacekeeping force on Syria’s border with Israel from the effects of a possible chemical attack.
 
"We have taken measures to enhance security," he told reporters after briefing the Security Council on Monday. "For those personnel who are not equipped on a national basis we are sending them some kits to protect them from chemical attack, if that were to happen."

PA Warns US: 'Genie is Already Out of the Bottle'

Category: News
Created on Monday, 17 December 2012 10:42
Mahmoud Abbas Chief representative of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) in Washington D.C. is warning United States lawmakers against retaliating for last month's statehood vote at the United Nations, maintaining that doing so would only hurt U.S. credibility in the region.
 
“History has shown time and again that the language of threats, financial pressure, and punitive measures simply does not work,” Maen Rashid Areikat wrote in a letter sent to U.S. lawmakers. “Engagement and dialogue is the only way to express the views of Congress. Biased and one-sided resolutions cannot contribute to an atmosphere that is conducive for a political resolution to the conflict.”
 
Areikat’s letter came in response to calls by a bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers, urging President Barack Obama to close the PLO office in Washington D.C.
 
Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Howard Berman (D-Calif.), Edward Royce (R-Calif.) and Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) are circulating a letter in response to the Palestinian Authority’s successful bid at the United Nation, urging that the U.S. to utilize “every means at our disposal to ensure that this General Assembly vote does not serve as a precedent for elevating the status of the PLO in other UN bodies or international forums.”
 
The UN resolution, which approved the PA bid for upgraded status as non-member observer state, granted the it de facto status as a sovereign state based on its own territorial claims, thus violating peace accords and enabling it to circumvent final status negotiations with Israel. Despite adamant disapproval by Israel and the U.S., the bid was overwhelmingly approved by a vote of 138 to 9, with 41 abstentions.
 
“[A]llow me to point out a fact that may escape some of you: the genie is already out of the bottle; it cannot be put back in,” Areikat wrote in his letter. “There is no action that can be taken by anyone, Congress included, to change our UN status. The world spoke in a unified voice; Palestine is now recognized as a non-member State at the UN.”
 
“We sure can disagree but to express your disagreements by applying pressure serves no one’s interests,” he wrote. 

Israel destroys Hamas Cabinet building

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 17 November 2012 22:21
Gaza City on Nov. 17 2012 for the fourth consecutive day. AFPIsraeli air strikes killed 10 Palestinians and destroyed the Hamas government building on Saturday as the Jewish state called up thousands more reservists for a possible ground war. 
 
“The cabinet headquarters was targeted with four strikes and the government stresses that it remains committed to its positions and its stand alongside the people,” the Hamas government said in a statement.
 
Eyewitnesses and Hamas officials said the building located in the Nasser neighborhood of Gaza City was virtually leveled in the strike. 
 
“The headquarters was completely destroyed and neighboring houses were damaged as a result of the barbaric Israeli bombing,” a Hamas official said. 
 
After Palestinian militants fired rockets at the heart of Israel on Friday, Israeli warplanes carried out 180 air strikes overnight, Israel television reported.“It’s like a real-life horror movie, what I saw today... It’s a miracle we’re still alive,” said 18-year-old Suha, standing outside her house. 
 
Medics said 40 Gazans have been killed and more than 390 wounded since Israel launched its aerial campaign on Wednesday afternoon, with at least five militants among 10 people killed on Saturday. 
 
As the toll rose, sirens sounds in Tel Aviv for a third day, sending people scuttling for cover a day after a rocket hit the sea near the city center, AFP correspondents said. 
 
Officials said one rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome anti-missile system while a second hit somewhere in the Tel Aviv metropolitan area.
 
International reactions
 
 
In Egypt, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Israel would be held to account for the children killed.
 
“Everyone must know that sooner or later there will be a holding to account for the massacre of these innocent children killed inhumanely in Gaza,” he said in a speech in Cairo.
 
The United States called for diplomacy and “de-escalation” as a way to end the crisis.
 
Ben Rhodes, White House deputy national security adviser, told reporters the United States “wants the same thing as the Israelis want,” which is an end to rocket attacks on Israel by Palestinian militants in Gaza.
 
Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi, meanwhile, pledged to support Palestinians against “Israel's aggression” and to end the blockade of Gaza as Arab ministers began emergency talks on the conflict in Cairo Saturday.
 
“We pledge to the Palestinians in Gaza and everywhere to provide support to confront this aggression and break the siege,” he said at the start of the meeting.

Israel to ‘expand operations’ in Gaza; Islamic Jihad claims rocket fire

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 15 November 2012 14:30
RocketsIsrael will take “whatever action is necessary” to defend its citizens from Palestinian rocket attacks, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday as the military pressed a massive operation in Gaza. 
 
Israel will “continue to take whatever action is necessary to defend our people,” he said at a televised press conference in Tel Aviv.
 
“Our army will expand its operations to protect Israel … more than 50 rockets landed in Israel during past 50 hours,” Netanyahu told reporters. 
 
But a spokesman from Hamas, which held a press conference also on Thursday, condemned Israel for “trying to exploit the war on Gaza for political purposes.”
 
“Israel has used every weapon to attack civilians in Gaza,” he told reporters adding: “Our battle with Israel is open-ended, progressive and escalating.
 
‘We will not be exposed to further tricks by the occupation. We consider talk of a truce at this time an attempt to provide more cover for the continuation of the escalation on Gaza.
 
‘Talk of a truce is another attempt by the occupation at deception,’ he said, adding that ‘the enemy started an open war on our people and our resistance in Gaza," he added
 
Fighting began with Israel’s targeted killing of Hamas military chief Ahmed Jaabari on Wednesday. Since then, Palestinian fighters have fired around rockets over the border. 
 
The Israeli strikes have killed 14 people in Gaza since Wednesday afternoon, while Gaza rockets have killed three Israelis, police and medics said.
 
Aside the from the deaths, more than 130 Gazans have been injured in 22 hours of Israeli air strikes, medics said. 
 
“The Palestinian men and women will continue their resistance,” vowed Khaled Meshaal, the exiled chief of the Hamas movement which rules the Palestinian territory, on Thursday.
 
He described Israel as “not a legitimate entity” and said “this enemy is weak and cannot vanquish Gaza.”
 
A fresh wave of strikes was reported on Thursday afternoon by Al Arabiya.
 
Meanwhile, Israel’s already-strained relations with Egypt’s new Islamist government frayed even further as Egypt recalled its ambassador Wednesday in response to the Israeli military operation.
 
Gaza rocket hits sea near Tel Aviv
 
A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip on Thursday landed in the water just south of Tel Aviv, an AFP correspondent at the scene said, sparking panic across Israel’s commercial capital.
 
The rocket fire was claimed by the armed wing of the radical Islamic Jihad movement.
 
It was the farthest that a rocket from Gaza had ever hit inside Israel, and came as the air force pressed a major bombing campaign across the Hamas-run territory.
 
“A rocket crashed into the water just outside of Jaffa,” the correspondent said, as police confirmed that warning sirens had gone off across Tel Aviv.
 
“I was standing outside the French ambassador’s residence when I saw the rocket falling into the sea,” he said.
 
“There was about a minute between the sirens going off, warning residents to enter the shelters and the rocket landing. People in the street started running in all directions because they didn’t know where to shelter,” he said.
 
Israeli news networks said it was the first time rockets had been fired at the city since the 1991 Gulf War, when it was hit by Iraqi Scud missiles.

Obama Even More Flexible than Europe

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 08 November 2012 21:12
ObamaAs the world ponders what Barack Obama's re-election will mean in regards to the U.S.'s stance against Iran, an Iranian intelligence ministry report says that the Obama administration will be easier to deal with than the Republican administration that could have been in the White House. It asserts that the current administration has "completely different" views on Iran than Israel -- views that are more flexible even than those of the European Union.
 
"Although Democrats have not hesitated in implementing hostile policies against the Iranian nation and repeatedly say that 'all options are on the table,' they have pinned their hope on diplomacy," the report said.
 
The report, quoted by media on Thursday and posted on the ministry's newly launched website vaja.ir, was prepared before Obama's re-election victory Tuesday over rival Republican candidate Mitt Romney, according to AFP.
 
"The Republican party has a more severe confrontational approach towards Iran... and its proposed policies are close to those of the Zionist regime [Israel]," the report said. Obama's "Democratic party's position is completely different" on Iran, it added.
 
The analysis contradicts the rhetoric of Iranian leaders and media who daily denounced Obama during his first term, accusing him of aligning his policies with those of Israel in a bid to weaken the Islamic republic.
 
The report also underlined an "open confrontation" between Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu over Iran. Although Netanyahu has exerted "immense pressure" on Obama to adopt a firmer stance on Iran, the report said, "the policies of the Obama administration are different from those of the Zionist regime."
 
The analysis also argues that the Obama administration has a more moderate approach on sanctions against Tehran than European countries.
 
"Although Americans have themselves imposed expansive sanctions against Iran, they are still trailing the Europeans in this regard," it said.
 
Iran has also signalled it may be open to hold dialogue with the "Great Satan," its epithet for the United States, following the re-election of Obama.

Israel Mocks Turkey’s ‘Show Trial’ for '18,000 Years in Jail'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 07 November 2012 07:07
Weapons from the MarmaraA Turkish court on Tuesday began what Israel calls an in absentia "show trial" of former IDF Chief of Gabi Ashkenazi and three other former senior military officers over the 2010 clash with the terror-linked IHH organization.
 
The prosecutors are demanding multiple life sentences that would amount to 18,000 years in jail for the four officers over the clash that plunged relations between Israel and Turkey into deep crisis. Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Istanbul court waving Palestinian Authority flags and chanting "Damn Israel" as the trial opened, AFP reported
 
Israeli commandos boarded the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara, the largest ship in a flotilla dispatched by the IHH, ostensibly a relief agency but which has been proven to include terrorists. Their ship presumably was headed to Hamas-controlled Gaza with humanitarian aid in an effort to break the maritime embargo against the smuggling of terrorists and arms into Gaza. After the Mavi Mamara ship was led to the post in Ashdod, it was discovered there was no aid on board.Flotilla Terrorists
 
Nine IHH terror activists were killed in the clash after they brutally clubbed IDF Navy commandos who had boarded the ship virtually unarmed. Reinforcements were sent in after the IHH kidnapped, shot and knifed commandos, kidnapping three of them until their rescue.
 
"This is not a trial but a show trial and has nothing to do with law and justice," Israeli foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP, saying the defendants had not even been informed about the nature of the charges.
 
"They haven't been given even a symbolic chance to have legal representation," he added. "It's a propaganda showcase. The government of Turkey, if it really wanted to do something about this issue, would engage with Israel."
 
The defendants in the trial are Ashkenazi, former navy chief Eliezer Marom, former military intelligence head Amos Yadlin and former air force intelligence chief Avishai Levy.
 
Israel ruled that those who took part in the raid did nothing wrong, and one of the lawyers for the plaintiffs said they expected the court to issue an arrest warrant for the men.
 
Last year, an Israeli probe ruled that the raid did not violate international law, and a United Nations report said that although the IDF used “excessive force,” the flotilla organizers acted “recklessly” and that the maritime blockade was legal.
 
In May, Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon had said he was expecting foreign diplomatic pressure on Turkey to stop the trial, saying it could have "wide-ranging implications for NATO and US forces," which frequently board ships suspected of terror activity.
 
Turkey insists ties will not return to normal unless Israel offers a formal apology, compensates the victims and lifts the blockade on the impoverished Gaza Strip.

IDF Jeep Hit by Syrian Gunfire on Golan Heights

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 06 November 2012 07:20
View from the GolanAn Israeli military jeep was hit Monday by Syrian gunfire on the Golan Heights, AFP reported. IDF soldiers were patrolling this evening near the northern border when they came under gunfire from the Syrian side of the border. The IDF Spokesperson told Arutz Sheva there were no casualties and that the incident is under investigation.
 
According to the IDF, the gunfire also most likely came as the result of the internal civil war in Syria, and was not due to deliberate aggression against Israel on the part of Damascus.  "Apparently they were stray bullets, and there were no injuries" to those aboard the vehicle, a military spokesman told AFP.
 
 Israel informed the United Nations force in the region.
 
IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz warned Sunday that Syria's civil war might soon become "an Israeli matter” if military spillover continues. IDF Division 36 soldiers who are stationed on the Golan Heights reported to Gantz they can hear shouts and gunfire from across the border.
 
"The division is ready for any moment in which those shots might change direction and be turned on us,” said IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai, who was escorting Gantz at the time. 
 
Last Saturday three Syrian tanks entered the demilitarized zone between Syrian and Israeli territory on the Golan Heights.
 
The tanks, which belong to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces, entered the village of Bir Ajam, a short distance away from an IDF position while allegedly maneuvering as part of the fighting between Assad and rebel forces. 
 
Israel lodged a formal complaint with the U.N. for the second time this year.
 
Syria remains formally at war with Israel, which captured part of the Golan Heights in the 1967 Six Day War, and annexed it in 1981 in a move the international community does not recognize.
 
Since a 1974 disengagement agreement between the two countries, a 1,200-member unarmed U.N. force has patrolled a demilitarized buffer zone on the Heights. In July, Israel complained to the U.N. after Syrian soldiers entered the zone in violation of the agreement.

Sudanese VP Says Country Stands with Hamas, Doesn't Fear Israel

Category: News
Created on Monday, 05 November 2012 06:27
One explosion sent detonating ammunition flying through the air and causing panic ReutersThe vice president of Sudan announced Sunday that his country does not fear Israel and will stand by the Islamist Hamas movement.
 
"We announce that we will support Hamas... and we will not fear Israeli aggression," Vice President Al-Haj Adam Youssef said, according to an SMS news alert from the official Radio Omdurman.
 
Khartoum accused Israel of sending four radar evading aircraft to strike the Yarmouk military factory, which exploded and burst into flames in the heart of Khartoum at midnight on October 23.
 
Sudan's foreign ministry continues to accuse Israel of trying to spread "fabricated information" to provide reasons for its "aggression".
 
"This includes talk about claimed relations between the Al-Yarmouk compound and Iran and Syria, and the Hamas Islamic struggle movement in Palestine, and Hizbullah in Lebanon,” the ministry alleged.
 
Ismail Haniya, head of Hamas in Gaza, also condemned "the Zionist terrorism behind the bombing of a (military) factory in Sudan."
 
While Israel has not commented on the allegations, Israeli officials have repeatedly expressed concern about arms smuggling through Sudan and have long accused Khartoum of serving as a base of support for Hamas terrorists.
 
Meanwhile, two Iranian warships docked in a Sudanese port last week, highlighting the military ties between Sudan and the Islamic Republic, and prompting speculation that the stay was related to the arms factory blast. Sudan denied such speculations, claiming the visit was "routine."

Egypt Islamists cause for concern

Category: News
Created on Friday, 02 November 2012 11:56
Mohamed Mursi has his roots in Muslim Brotherhood.AFPA top aide to Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said on Friday he is apprehensive about the Islamic movement that brought Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi to power and sees no dialogue forthcoming between Mursi and Israeli leaders.
 
“If I am apprehensive about anything, it's the Muslim Brotherhood because the Muslim Brotherhood is an ideological movement and they are undergoing a revival,” Amos Gilad, the head of the defense ministry policy department said in remarks broadcast by Israeli public radio.
 
“What hasn’t changed? The ideology: Israel has no right to exist and (the Brotherhood) wants to set up an Islamic caliphate,” he said. 
 
“There is no dialogue between our top political echelon and this president and in my opinion there’s not going to be,” he added.
 
Israel has watched warily as the influential Brotherhood, in which Mursi has his roots, has gained increasing power in post-uprising Egypt, fearing for the future of the crucial, if cold, peace treaty between the two states.
 
Mursi, the country’s first Islamist president, has kept Israel at arm’s length since he took office on June 30. Egypt, Israel’s giant neighbor, was the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel, in 1979.
 
But presenting his credentials to Israeli President Shimon Peres last month, new Egyptian Ambassador Atef Salem brought a measure of reassurance.
 
“I came with a message of peace and I came to confirm that we are really working for mutual trust and transparency and we are committed to all the agreements we signed with Israel,” he said.

Hamas accuses Israel of Sudan blast

Category: News
Created on Friday, 26 October 2012 20:25
Ismail HaniyehIsmail Haniya, head of the Hamas government in Gaza, accused Israel of an attack against a military factory in Sudan, in his sermon for the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha on Friday.
 
“On my own behalf and on behalf of the government, we condemn the Zionist terrorism behind the bombing of a (military) factory in Sudan. We condemn this crime and this terrorism,” Haniya said.
 
The attack “proves once again that Israel is an outlaw state sponsoring terrorism in the region and in the world.”
 
Sudan on Wednesday accused Israel of bombing a military factory in Khartoum killing two people.
 
On Thursday, a senior Israeli defense ministry official called Sudan a “dangerous terrorist state,” without denying or claiming the bombing of the factory.
 
In April 2011, Sudan also accused Israel of being behind a mysterious air raid against a vehicle that killed two in Port Sudan.
 
Israel did not comment on it and a similar raid was carried out by a foreign aircraft on a weapons convoy in eastern Sudan in January 2009.
 
Haniya also called on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime to release its “grip” on Palestinians staying in camps in Syria and on “Syrian brothers seeking their freedom and dignity.”
 
“We feel the pain of our (Palestinian) people in camps in Syria, of martyrs and wounded ... May the criminal hand release its grip on children of our Palestinian people in Syria,” Haniya said.
 
Damascus has in the past supported Hamas by offering facilities in Syria but the Palestinian Islamist movement has backed Syrian rebels after the Palestinian refugee camps in the country became targets of bombings.
 
The ties between the two further ruptured following an attack against Khaled Meshaal, the political bureau head of Hamas, on Syrian television.
 
Meshaal angered Damascus by praising “the revolution of the Syrian people for freedom and democracy” when he participated in the congress of Turkey’s ruling party.

Israeli Drone Destroyed Weapons in Sudan Last Month

Category: Reports
Created on Friday, 26 October 2012 07:38
MapIsrael carried out an unmanned drone raid on a convoy south of the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, last month, foreign intelligence sources told the Reuters news agency on Thursday.
 
The sources claimed the strike destroyed 200 tons of munitions, including rockets, that were intended for Gaza.
 
The report comes one day after a huge fire broke out at an arms factory in Khartoum. Sudan said the fire was a result of an attack by four military planes. The country’s Culture and Information Minister blamed Israel for the attack, adding that evidence pointing to Israel was found among remnants of the explosives.
 
The country’s envoy to the UN later demanded that the UN Security Council condemn Israel over the attack on the weapons factory.
 
The envoy, Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, also accused Israel of involvement in the Darfur conflict.
 
One retired Israeli defense official told Reuters on Thursday that Israel has been monitoring arms trafficking through Sudan, adding that the monitoring dates back to the previous government of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
 
The ex-official said Israel's strategy is aimed to "stem the flow of arms (to Sinai and Gaza) without triggering major confrontations.”
 
"This is all the more relevant today," the ex-official said, referring to the instability in Egypt and in the Sinai Peninsula.
 
Israel did not officially comment on Wednesday’s incident, but Amos Gilad, director of policy and political-military affairs at the Defense Ministry, said Thursday that Sudan was a terrorist state. Hitting back at Sudan over its blaming Israel, he said that its accusations that Israel engaged in terrorism against that country could not be taken seriously.
 
“Sudan is a dangerous terrorist state. To know exactly what happened (there), it will take some time to understand," said Gilad. "There are different versions of the Sudanese side, so there is no reason to go into details.”
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu would not comment on the incident, saying at a news conference on Thursday that Israel had nothing to say about the explosion.
 
In May, Sudan suggested that Israel was involved in an explosion that killed a suspected arms smuggler in the eastern Sudanese city of Port Sudan.
 
Last December, news outlets in Sudan claimed that Israeli fighter jets, helicopters and possibly a submarine were involved in multiple attacks on targets in the country.

Sudan to UN: Condemn Israel

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 25 October 2012 08:33
Fire at the Yarmouk ammunition factory in Khartoum -ReutersSudan on Wednesday demanded that the UN Security Council condemn Israel after it accused the Jewish State of carrying out an air attack on a Sudanese weapons factory, AFP reported.
 
According to the report, Sudan's UN envoy, Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, also accused Israel of involvement in the Darfur conflict.
 
Sudan claimed that four Israeli aircraft fired missiles that hit a military factory and killed two people in Khartoum. Israel has not reacted to the allegations.
 
The explosion at the military factory in Sudan's capital before dawn Wednesday sent detonating ammunition flying through the air, causing panic among residents, the official news agency and local media reports said.
 
"Four Israeli aircraft invaded our airspace and perpetrated this heinous attack," Osman was quoted by AFP as having told a UN Security Council meeting on the Darfur conflict.
 
"We reject such aggression and expect your esteemed council to condemn this attack because it is a blatant violation of the concept of peace and security" and the UN charter, the ambassador added.
 
Israel was "jeopardizing peace and security in the entire region," he added.
 
Osman added that "we all know of the Israeli hands in the Darfur conflict" over the past decade in which the UN says at least 300,000 people have been killed.
 
The envoy said Israel had armed Darfur rebels and helped transport rebel leaders. "We call on you to stop foreign hands meddling in the Darfur conflict," the ambassador said.
 
In May, Sudan suggested that Israel was involved in an explosion that killed a suspected arms smuggler in the eastern Sudanese city of Port Sudan.
 
Last December, news outlets in Sudan claimed that Israeli fighter jets, helicopters and possibly a submarine were involved in multiple attacks on targets in the country.

Iran says will ‘retaliate’ if attacked, in response to Israel

Category: News
Created on Friday, 28 September 2012 10:59
Nuclear IranIran has warned it is ready to retaliate against attack after Israel’s prime minister urged a red line to be drawn over its nuclear program.
 
Benjamin Netanyahu told the U.N. time was running out to stop Iran having enough enriched uranium for a nuclear bomb.
 
In response, Iran’s deputy U.N. ambassador said his country was strong enough to defend itself.
 
Iran’s U.N. mission said Israel had made “baseless and absurd allegations against (its) exclusively peaceful nuclear program.”
 
It also said Israel “on a daily basis, threatens countries in the region, particularly my country (with) military attack.”
 
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is strong enough to defend itself and reserves its full right to retaliate with full force against any attack,” the Iranian mission said in a written statement.
 
Netanyahu had said on Thursday the only way to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons was by setting “a clear red line” to stop its atomic program. 
 
“At this late hour, there is only one way to peacefully prevent Iran from getting atomic bombs and that’s by placing a clear red line on Iran's nuclear weapons program,” Netanyahu said in a speech at the U.N. General Assembly. “Red lines don’t lead to war; red lines prevent war.”
 
“The hour is late, very late,” Netanyahu said, alleging Iran was already 70 percent of the way through the process of enriching enough uranium to fuel a bomb, and must be prevented from reaching the 90 percent level.
 
He said that by next summer, Iran will be on brink of having enough enriched uranium for a nuclear bomb. 
 
Israel has warned that it could launch military action against Iran in order to prevent it reaching a certain nuclear threshold, and has urged the international community to force Tehran to abandon its atomic quest.
 
Iran denies it is building a nuclear weapon and has dismissed the Israeli threat.
 
Meanwhile, China said on Thursday that the disagreement over Iran’s nuclear program had reached “a new, crucial stage,” calling for Tehran to begin a new round of talks with world powers, something a U.S. official said could happen at some point.
 
Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi spoke several hours after Netanyahu’s U.N. General Assembly address and after a meeting of officials from the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council - the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China - and Germany yielded no obvious signs of progress toward a diplomatic solution.
 
“The Iranian nuclear issue has reached a new, crucial stage,” Yang said in a speech at the U.N. General Assembly. “The relevant parties should remain committed to a diplomatic solution and begin a new round of dialogue as soon as possible.”
 
A senior U.S. official said “at some point” the group would likely return for a fourth round of talks with Iran.
 
“I think we’ve got some additional work to do first, so I would not expect that to happen immediately, but I would hope that we will get there in the not-too-distant future,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
 
The push to resume talks comes at a time when tensions between Iran and Israel are rising and diplomatic efforts to resolve the decade-long dispute over Iran’s nuclear work have foundered.
 
Israel, the United States, the European Union and their allies say Iran is amassing the capability to produce a nuclear bomb, an allegation the Islamic Republic denies.
 
The six world powers, represented by EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, have sought to persuade Iran to scale back the enrichment of uranium through intensifying economic sanctions and diplomacy.
 
Israel’s threats bolster Iran’s stance: Guards
 
 
Meanwhile, the head of the Revolutionary Guards said on Friday that Israel’s threats of military action against Iran over its nuclear program only serve to boost the defiance of the Islamic republic.
 
“The enemies want to stop us continuing our path... but these threats only reinforce our determination to continue in the same direction,” General Mohammad Ali Jafari said in a speech to thousands of members of the country’s Basij militia, according to the Guards’ Sepahnews website.
 
“That is why, when the Zionists make military threats, they are put in their place by the United States,” he said.
 
Jafari’s comments came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday told the UN General Assembly that “a clear red line on Iran’s nuclear weapons program” needed to be set. He has said his country is contemplating air strikes on Iran’s nuclear facilities.
 
“If a military attack is launched against our nuclear installations, we promise that the enemies will not escape alive,” the head of Iran’s air and ballistic missile units, General Farzad Esmaili, was quoted as saying on Friday by the ISNA news agency.
 
Last weekend, Jafari announced that an Israel-Iran war “will eventually happen” and that his country was prepared.
 
But on Wednesday, he stepped back from those remarks, saying that Israel’s threats “lead nowhere and will not result in an armed conflict,” according to Sepahnews.

Abbas tells U.N. Israel promising Palestinians a ‘new catastrophe’

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 27 September 2012 19:21
Mahmoud Abbas said he still sees a chance for a 2-state solution. AFPPalestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday condemned as “catastrophic” the Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, which he said were killing hopes for a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict.
 
He said he would seek an upgrade to the Palestinians’ U.N. status to recognize it as a sovereign country and cautioned that Israeli settlement expansion meant time was running out for a two-state solution.
 
“Despite all the complexities of the prevailing reality and all the frustrations that abound, we say before the international community there is still a chance -- maybe the last -- to save the two-state solution and to salvage peace,” Abbas told the United Nations General Assembly.
 
But he warned the 193-nation assembly that Israel was “promising the Palestinian people a new catastrophe” if it continues with its current settlement policies in the occupied West Bank. 
 
Abbas also demanded a U.N. resolution that would serve as a basis to end the deadlock in talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
 
“Developments over the past year have confirmed what we have persistently drawn attention to and warned of: the catastrophic danger of the racist Israeli settlement of our country, Palestine,” he said, noting “attacks by terrorist militias of Israeli settlers.”
 
“We are facing relentless waves of attacks against our people, our mosques, churches and monasteries, and our homes and schools,” he said. 
 
“They are unleashing their venom against our trees, fields, crops and properties, and our people have become fixed targets for acts of killing and abuse with the complete collusion of the occupying forces and the Israeli government.”
 
Abbas also called on the Security Council to “urgently adopt a resolution comprising the basis and foundations for a solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict that would serve as a binding reference and guide for all.”
 
According to the Palestinian leader, this is crucial “if the vision of two-states, Israel and Palestine, is to survive and if peace is to prevail in the land of peace.”
 
The Hamas government in Gaza denounced Abbas’s speech as “emotional”, saying it showed the 1993 Oslo peace accords had failed.
 
“It is clear that the speech announced the failure of the political program since Oslo,” Taher al-Nunu, a spokesman for the Hamas government said.
 
“The speech contained contradictions. He talked about the failure of the peace process and Oslo, and then called for the return to negotiations,” Nunu said.
 
“We repeat that it would be better for Abu Mazen to proclaim the death of the negotiations and of compromise,” he added.
 
One year later
One year after Abbas made his historic appeal to the U.N. General Assembly for Palestinian statehood, he returned with the more modest goal of seeing his territory given a kind of elevated non-member observer status. 
 
His Israeli sparring partner, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, opposes even that goal while direct talks are suspended.
 
Abbas, meanwhile, plans to launch a campaign to see Palestine recognized as a non-state member within the border that existed before the 1967 Six Day War -- when Israel captured the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem.
 
The Palestinians see this as the basis for border negotiations with Israel on a permanent solution to their conflict, but Israel and its U.S. ally oppose recognition before the terms of the final deal are agreed.
 
“We want Palestine back on the map, on the 1967 lines, with east Jerusalem as its capital, carried by 150 to 170 nations,” Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat told journalists last week.
 
The Palestinian leadership was formerly opposed to non-state membership, seeing this as a distraction and possible dead end, but their political clout has only diminished in the year since their initial bid.
 
Enhanced observer status would at least give them access to more agencies, such as the World Health Organization or International Criminal Court.
 
If it did come to a vote, the Palestinians would probably win a majority of U.N. members, but they have reportedly promised Washington not to push the issue too hard until after the Nov. 6 U.S. presidential election.
 
A State Department official confirmed Clinton had met Abbas late Wednesday in a New York hotel on the eve of his speech and that the question of a new U.N. observer status had come up.
 
“We have had conversations with the president on this topic,” the official said. “We have made very clear that our goal is to resume direct talks and that the idea of going to the U.N. is not the road that takes us there.”
 
Abbas was due to speak at around 1700 GMT and Netanyahu shortly afterwards.

Israel has ‘no roots’ in Middle East history

Category: News
Created on Monday, 24 September 2012 11:49
AhmadinejadIsrael has “no roots” in the history of the Middle East and represents a disturbance for Iran, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Monday.
 
Ahmadinejad said Iran has been around for thousands of years, but Israel has existed for only 60 or 70 years. He said that for a certain “historical phase” Israel represents a disturbance for Iran and “they are then eliminated.”
 
“They (Israel) have no roots there in history,” Ahmadinejad told reporters in New York, where he is due to attend the U.N. General Assembly. “They do not even enter the equation for Iran.”
 
The Iranian president earlier said his country does not take seriously Israeli threats of attack, but is prepared to defend itself.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has hinted that Israel could strike Iran’s nuclear sites and has criticized U.S. President Barack Obama’s position that sanctions and diplomacy should be given more time to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons.
 
Iran denies that it is seeking nuclear arms and says its atomic work is peaceful, aimed at generating electricity.
 
“Fundamentally we do not take seriously the threats of the Zionists. ... We have all the defensive means at our disposal and we are ready to defend ourselves,” Ahmadinejad added.
 
“While we are fully ready to defend ourselves, we do not take such threats seriously,” he said, speaking through an interpreter.
 
Amir Ali Hajizadeh, a brigadier general in Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was quoted as saying on Sunday that Iran could launch a pre-emptive strike on Israel if it was sure the Jewish state was preparing to attack it.
 
“The nuclear issue is not a problem. But the approach of the United States on Iran is important,” Ahmadinejad told reporters. “We are ready for dialogue, for a fundamental resolution of the problems” but under conditions that are based on “fairness and mutual respect,” he added.
 
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned Ahmadinejad of the dangers of incendiary rhetoric when two men met in New York on Sunday before this week’s annual gathering of world leaders at the General Assembly.
 
In previous years, Ahmadinejad has used his U.N. speeches to defend Iran’s nuclear program and to attack Israel, the United States and Europe. He has questioned the Holocaust and cast doubt on whether 19 hijackers were really responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States in 2001.
 
Western envoys predictably walk out of Ahmadinejad’s speeches in protest.
 
There will be high-level side meetings on Iran’s nuclear program and Syria during the General Assembly, but U.N. diplomats do not expect either issue to be resolved soon.

Netanyahu warns Israel will strike Lebanon if Hezbollah provokes

Category: News
Created on Monday, 27 August 2012 10:10
Netanyahu Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu threatened to strike Lebanon if Hezbollah provokes the Jewish state, Haaretz newspaper reported on Monday.
 
Netanyahu said he believes that Hezbollah is a part of the Lebanese government, warning the government that it will be held “responsible for whatever happens in its jurisdiction.”
 
The Israeli premier’s message was relayed through “a Western diplomat he met in Jerusalem several weeks ago,” Haaretz reported.
 
According to a senior official who was close to the meeting between Netanyahu and the U.S. official, if if the resistance party should attack Israel, Netanyahu said the Israeli army would “strike back forcefully – without differentiating between Hezbollah and the state of Lebanon.”
 
Earlier this month, Hezbollah's Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah vowed to turn the Jewish state into a “living hell” if Lebanon was attacked, threatening to kill “thousands of Israelis.”
 
Nasrallah was speaking on the occasion of Jerusalem Day, marked each year on the last Friday of Ramadan in accordance with a tradition established by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the late supreme leader of Iran.
 
The Hezbollah leader addressed Israel, saying: “War with Lebanon would be very, very, very costly.”
 
“There are targets in occupied Palestine (Israel) which could be targeted by a small number of missiles,” Nasrallah said.
 
“If we are forced to use them to protect our people and our country, we will not hesitate to do so... and that will turn the lives of hundreds of thousands of Zionists into a living hell,” he said in a speech marking Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day.
 
Nasrallah warned of “tens of thousands of deaths, and not just 300 to 500 dead,” adding that Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran and Syria, had fixed its targets.
 
Israel, the only Middle East country outside the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), has never confirmed or denied having nuclear weapons.
 
“Hitting these targets with a small number of rockets will turn ... the lives of hundreds of thousands of Zionists to real hell, and we can talk about tens of thousands of dead,” said Nasrallah.
 
 
In case of any Israeli attack on Iran over its controversial nuclear program, “the response will be enormous,” he warned. Any such action would present the Islamic republic with “the opportunity is has been dreaming of” since it was founded in 1979.
 
Israel and Lebanon are officially in a state of war, and the Jewish state fought a devastating war with Hezbollah in the summer of 2006.
 
Last month, Israel accused Iran and Hezbollah of planning attacks in “over 20 countries” in remarks just days after a deadly attack in Bulgaria that killed five Israeli tourists and their local bus driver.
 
Iran denied the charges but Hezbollah refused to comment.

Israel's Amazing Story: Fulfillment of Bible Prophecy

Category: Op-Eds
Created on Tuesday, 14 August 2012 17:54
Fulfillment of Bible ProphecyAs American writer Saul Bellow asked, "What is it that led the Jews to place themselves, after the greatest disaster in their history [the Holocaust], in a danger zone?" The surprising truth is that Jewish rule over Jerusalem is an essential element of end-time biblical prophecy!
Ever since the Roman siege of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 and the ultimate loss of the city for nearly two millennia beginning in A.D. 135, many generations of the Jewish people have held a deep desire to return to the Holy Land. Their almost universal cry has been, "Next year in Jerusalem!"
In the earliest books of the Bible, God had decreed that the 12 tribes of Israel should inherit the Promised Land, also called the Holy Land. The book of Joshua and the first chapter of Judges record how Israel, with God's help, conquered the area of ancient Canaan, which is primarily the land known as Israel today.
A golden age—then trouble
Then, some 3,000 years ago, the monarchy of the Jewish king David and his son Solomon led Israel to the fullest expansion of the Promised Land. During that golden age, the people's condition was aptly summed up in utopian terms: "And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, each man under his vine and his fig tree, from Dan as far as Beersheba [cities representing the northern and southern extent of ancient Israel], all the days of Solomon" (1 Kings 4:25
).
Primarily because of blatant idolatry, these favorable conditions did not continue long. After Solomon's death, the kingdom of Israel was divided into two separate countries followed by national captivity of the northern 10 tribes some 200 years later. (The resulting fate of the northern 10 tribes has intrigued historians for centuries. To learn more about them, and their own amazing fulfillment of biblical prophecy, request our free booklet The United States and Britain in Bible Prophecy . )
The two southern tribes (making up the kingdom of Judah, its people known as the Jews) followed their northern cousins in rejecting God and turning to idolatry. They soon met the same fate. The kingdom of Judah was invaded and its citizens deported 136 years after the demise of the northern kingdom of Israel.
Eventually a small percentage of Jewish exiles returned to Jerusalem about 500 years before the time of Christ. A second temple was built—only to be destroyed by Titus' Roman legions in A.D. 70, helping precipitate another diaspora or dispersion of the Jewish people to other nations.
Nonetheless, massive depopulation was not immediate and the Jews remaining in Jerusalem again revolted against the Romans in A.D. 132-135, unsuccessfully, leading to another scattering. Nevertheless, a small number of Jews remained in parts of the Holy Land throughout the intervening centuries.
Jewry in Palestine before statehood
By the mid-19th century the Jewish population had reached 10,000, including 8,000 in Jerusalem alone. Many were immigrants from Poland and Lithuania. Russian emigration became more pronounced between 1882 and 1903 with 25,000 Jews entering Palestine. In fact, the Jewish population of Jerusalem alone had reached 25,000 by 1889, compared with 14,000 Arabs.
Still, the Jews remained a minority in the Holy Land by the turn of the century. Their population, however, continued to rise as time went by. For instance, between 1933 and 1936 the Jewish presence in the Holy Land increased from about 235,000 to nearly 385,000.
Determined Arab resistance began to slow this increase in 1937, but all future setbacks proved temporary. In the aftermath of World War II, between late summer of 1945 and late spring of 1948, perhaps 40,000 Jews entered Palestine secretly. The first half of 1946 also saw a further 10,000 Jewish immigrants enter the Holy Land by boat.
By the time statehood finally arrived on May 14, 1948, the Jewish population of the Holy Land had reached about 700,000. (We mention a smattering of these statistics because of a general false impression that there were very few Jews in Palestine before statehood.)
In spite of periodic Arab and later British efforts to limit Jewish immigration, the flow of people to the Holy Land continued off and on—especially during the first half of the 20th century.
David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, understood the importance of having a considerable Jewish presence in the Holy Land when statehood might finally be achieved.
In early 1935, shortly before World War II broke out, Ben-Gurion observed with exceptional prophetic insight: "The disaster which has befallen German Jews is not limited to Germany alone. Hitler's regime places the entire Jewish people in danger . . . [It] cannot long survive without a war of revenge against France, Poland, Czechoslovakia . . . and against Soviet Russia . . . Who knows; perhaps only four or five years, if not less, stand between us and that awful day . . .
"In this period we must double our numbers [in the Holy Land], for the size of the Jewish population on that day may determine our fate at the post-war settlement" (quoted by Noah Lucas, Modern History of Israel, 1975, p. 148, emphasis added throughout article). The necessary groundwork had been laid years in advance of statehood for a more massive immigration in decades to follow.
Theodor Herzl, Zionist pioneer
Theodor Herzl, Paris correspondent for a prominent Viennese newspaper in the late 1800s, originally believed that Jews should solve their dilemmas by gradual assimilation into the gentile world.
Despite his Jewish roots, in 1892 Herzl had even denied the presence of French anti-Semitism, stating that "the French people remain strangers to, and without understanding of, anti-Semitism" (quoted by Conor Cruise O'Brien, The Siege, 1986, p. 65).
Covering the Paris trial of the French military officer Alfred Dreyfus, a Jew, in 1894 radically altered Herzl's perspective. Dreyfus' trumped-up conviction and subsequent harsh imprisonment based on false evidence was a farce. But what shocked Herzl most was the ugly anti-Semitism displayed by the attendant crowds.
He quickly grasped the seriousness of the situation and immediately began thinking in terms of getting the Jews out of Europe, the sooner the better. (Incidentally, French anti-Semitism is back in the news with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon alleging "the spread of the wildest anti-Semitism in France," attributing it to France's growing Muslim population.)
Commented O'Brien: "The Zionists had been right about the thing that mattered most. They had sensed that the Jews of Europe were in deadly danger . . . Herzl, when Hitler was only six, had already sensed the need for a mass exodus of European Jews" (p. 315).
Theodor Herzl formed the World Zionist Organization with a view to establishing a Jewish state in Palestine. Noted British historian Martin Gilbert has written of Herzl: "On 3 September 1897 he wrote in his diary, 'Were I to sum up the Basle Congress [in Switzerland] in a word . . . it would be this: At Basle I founded the Jewish State. If I said this out loud today, I would be answered by universal laughter. Perhaps in five years, and certainly in fifty, everyone will know it" ( Israel: A History, 1998, p. 15).
In fact, it took just over 50. Zionist Jews like Herzl and Chaim Weizmann, a chemist from Russia residing in Manchester, were also instrumental in saving a remnant of European Jews from the future Holocaust. Partially due to their efforts, "there were more than 700,000 Jews in Israel when the New State was declared" ( The Siege, p. 315).
The crucial Balfour Declaration
Herzl died at only 44 and it was left for Weizmann to carry the baton forward. This he did effectively for several decades right up to statehood in 1948. Chaim Weizmann was instrumental in Zionist negotiations with the British government in the process of formulating the Balfour Declaration of 1917.
In brief this benchmark document stated: "His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine . . ." (Nov. 2, 1917).
In early December of 1917, the British army in Palestine expelled Turkish forces from Jerusalem, just over a month after Balfour. Theoretically, the way was now open for the British declaration to be implemented in constructing a Jewish national home, paving the way for the Jews to leave continental Europe. Some little progress was made towards these two major goals, although accompanied by many frustrating and supremely costly setbacks as well.
Although 250,000 German Jews managed to find refuge in other nations, those who emigrated to other places in continental Europe before World War II (1939-1945) soon found themselves back in Nazi hands, as David Ben-Gurion had foreseen in early 1935. Hitler's armies had overrun Europe. Many Jews were deported to Auschwitz and other death camps.
Even though the British record is far from perfect during this troubled era, prior to the war the nation did receive 40,000 German and Austrian Jews. It also made provision for 10,000 Jewish children to escape to Britain from Hitler's clutches.
A milestone in world history
After World War II, events moved much faster on the path to Jewish statehood. World outrage over the Holocaust sped things up considerably. Although Britain's Labour government was fudging on the Balfour Declaration, U.S. President Harry Truman courageously stood in the gap and made possible the decisive final steps in the founding of the state of Israel.
Chaim Weizmann played a major role in convincing the American president. Truman later said of Weizmann in his autobiography: "He had known many disappointments and grown patient and wise in them" ( Years of Trial and Hope, 1965).
Once truly convinced, President Truman outsmarted the opposition and, behind the scenes, was largely responsible for a positive United Nations vote on behalf of Israel.
Much has been written about the near-miraculous nature of the founding, against all odds, of the modern state of Israel.
For instance, Sir Martin Gilbert observed: "Herzl's call for Jewish statehood seemed too grandiose, too fraught with the complications of local Turkish and Arab opposition, too ambitious with regard to the accepted place of the Jew in the world, to be more than an extraordinary dream, an eccentricity" ( Israel: A History, p. 13).
In truth, the Jews achieved a modern nation-state in the Holy Land (against a fierce and determined opposition—including at times some very influential Jews) simply because God had foretold that it would occur. A Jewish state in the Holy Land had to exist so that certain biblical prophecies could be fulfilled.
The unrealized biblical dimension
Let's understand that the survival of the religion and culture of this ancient biblical people defies the odds. The fact that the Jews were not assimilated into the nations to any significant degree is unprecedented.
Now, since the 1967 Six-Day War, the Jewish people are again in possession of Jerusalem. On the western side of the Temple Mount, at the retaining wall for the vast platform Herod the Great constructed to support the temple of God in Jesus' day (now known as the Western or Wailing Wall), many Jews still cry and bemoan the ancient loss of the temple and pray earnestly for its restoration.
In His final major prophecy before His crucifixion, Jesus Christ described conditions wherein the Jews would again control Jerusalem. He said that the "holy place" would be desecrated, stating: "Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place . . . then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains" (Matthew 24:15-16).
What did the prophet Daniel say about this "abomination of desolation"? He writes that "the daily sacrifice [will be] taken away, and the abomination of desolation [will be] set up" (Daniel 12:11).
A preliminary fulfillment of this prophecy took place in 167 B.C. when the Syrian ruler Antiochus IV (Antiochus Epiphanes) invaded Judah, erected an idolatrous statue at the temple and sacrificed pigs on the temple altar.
Yet Jesus Christ's prophecy makes it clear that someone or something else will defile the holy place in Jerusalem shortly before His return.
For these prophecies to be fulfilled, it appears that sacrifices will be reinstituted in some form. Daniel 12:9-13describes the abomination of desolation as occurring at "the time of the end" in conjunction with the cutting off of sacrifices. Apparently the Jews will again initiate sacrifices at or near Jerusalem; armies again will surround Jerusalem, and the sacrifices will be halted.
Israel needs a third Jewish temple or some designated "holy place" for this to happen. Before its establishment as a state in 1948, this seemed impossible. Many observers have noted the overwhelming odds against Israeli statehood. Yet it happened!
Furthermore, even after the fledgling nation of Israel was established, it appeared that its inhabitants would never control Jerusalem because the Arab nations had pledged to prevent it. Yet during the Six-Day War of 1967 Israel took full possession of its ancient capital. Still the Temple Mount or holy place was left under Arab supervision, making any building of a temple or setting up of a "holy place" yet future. Christians should look to God to work out events so that His will may be fulfilled.
The state of Israel has a substantial role to play in the realization of key biblical prophecies. Watch Jerusalem! GN

Egyptian Protesters Demand to End Ties with Israel

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 07 August 2012 07:43
Egyptian protest ReutersDozens of protesters demonstrated outside the residence of Israel's ambassador to Egypt in Cairo on Monday night, demanding that the government cease all diplomatic relations with the Jewish state in light of Sunday's attack along the border between Israel, Egypt and the Gaza Strip.
 
While the perpetrators remain unknown, Egypt has blamed Israel for the attack, which killed 17 Egyptian soldiers and injured seven.
 
“It’s definitely Israel who is behind it; we demand the termination of any political relations with Israel,” said Ahmed El-Toni, one of the protesters, who referred to himself as an “independent activist,” Ahram Online reported.  
 
He also criticized Egyptian President Mohamad Morsi for not yet taking action against the assumed culprits.
 
Last August, thousands of Egyptians protested outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo demanding the dismissal of the Israeli ambassador after five Egyptian soldiers were killed near the border in Sinai.
 
In September, dozens of protesters raided one of the embassy’s offices in Cairo, throwing documents into the air, while a man climbed to the top of building to remove the Israeli flag, as supporters cheered him on from the ground.Cairo rioters burn Israeli flag
 
The man was later celebrated as a national hero and referred to as “Flag Man.”
 
The protests forced the Israeli embassy in Cairo to close its doors.
 
"We're giving a chance to president Morsi till after Ramadan; if retribution for those who died wasn’t reached we will go back to the streets,” said Mohamed Bakhati, one of the protestors.
 
The Egyptian armed forces issued a statement on Monday attributing the attacks to assailants who reached Egypt through the Gaza tunnels. Hamas quickly denied any involvement in the attack.
 
Bakhati denied all claims that the perpetrators may be ‘Palestinians’ infiltrating the country from Gaza. ”Palestinians have an interest in keeping good relations with Egypt; no one is benefiting from this attack but Israel,” Bakhati claimed.

Egypt and Israel dispute 'presidential letter'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 01 August 2012 10:47
Morsi shakes hands with Haniyeh  RutersOn Tuesday, the Israeli head of state, Shimon Peres, published a friendly letter purportedly from his new Egyptian counterpart, Mohammed Mursi.
 
The letter said Mr Mursi was "looking forward to exerting our best efforts" to help put the Middle East peace process back on the right track.
 
But Egyptian officials denied it had been sent, insisting it was a "fake".
 
Shortly after he took office at the end of June, the Egyptian leader denied that he had told Iran's Fars news agency Iran and Egypt should improve their ties.
 
{youtube}0ZVkz6Max10&feature=player_embedded{/youtube}
 
His office said that interview was a complete fabrication.
 
'Slander'
 
The BBC's Jon Donnison, in Cairo, reports that in the era of email, text and tweets, pen and paper has become somewhat old hat, but when it comes to presidential diplomacy the letter remains a medium of choice.
 
The question is whether President Mursi wrote to Shimon Peres or not, our correspondent says.
 
Continue reading the main story
Start Quote
 
President Mursi did not send any letters to the Israeli president”
 
Yasser Ali
Egyptian president's spokesman
Mr Peres's office says he did, releasing a letter sent by fax by the Egyptian embassy in Tel Aviv, whose official stamp was on the cover letter, apparently from Mr Mursi which was brief but friendly in tone.
 
The unsigned letter read: "It was with deep thanks that I received your congratulations on the advent of the holy month of Ramadan."
 
"I take this opportunity to reiterate that I am looking forward to exerting our best efforts to get the Middle East peace process back to its right track in order to achieve security and stability for all peoples of the region, including the Israeli people," it added.
 
But within hours Mr Mursi's spokesman declared the letter a fake.
 
"President Mursi did not send any letters to the Israeli president," Yasser Ali told the al-Ahram newspaper, accusing those responsible of "slander".
 
Our correspondent says there will be questions over whether this was conspiracy or confusion, but either way the debate reflects Mr Mursi's delicate relationship with Israel.
 
The Islamist leader has said he wants to maintain Egypt's long-standing peace treaty with Israel, but being too cosy will not be popular with the Egyptian public, our correspondent adds.

Obama aide tells Israel of Iran attack plan in secret briefing

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 29 July 2012 09:42
uranium yellowcakePresident Barack Obama’s national security adviser has briefed Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on a U.S. contingency plan to attack Iran should diplomacy fail to curb its nuclear program, an Israeli newspaper reported on Sunday.
 
The Haaretz newspaper said that the U.S. adviser - Thomas Donilon - had described the plan in talks with Netanyahu earlier this month.
 
A senior Netanyahu aide, Harel Locker, refused to comment on the report when asked about it in an interview with an Israeli radio station. Another Israeli official reached by telephone, said “we do not comment on closed-door diplomatic meetings”.
 
Haaretz said the secret briefing was the most significant effort by high-level U.S. officials who had visited Israel in the past month, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, to try to dissuade Israel from launching its own military strike on Iran.
The report coincided with a visit to Israel by Obama’s main rival in his reelection bid this November, Republican candidate Mitt Romney, who is due to meet Netanyahu on Sunday.
 
Quoting a senior U.S. official it said spoke on condition of anonymity, Haaretz said Donilon had told Netanyahu the Pentagon was planning for a possible decision to attack Iran’s nuclear sites, and had shown him some of the plans.
 
In their talks, the same official said Donilon had also detailed the U.S. military’s ability to penetrate nuclear facilities buried deep underground, and had said that such contingency plans were being drawn up in case of a possible deadlock in diplomacy with Iran.
 
However according to Haaretz, another U.S. official involved in the talks with Israel said that “based on the intelligence we have, we think there is still time for diplomacy, and the time for a military operation against Iran has not yet come.”
 
The secretary of the U.S. Air Force, Michael Donley, told the Capitol Hill Club last week that the force's new bunker buster bombs were ready for use if needed, the paper added reported.
 
In recent months, the bombs, each weighing 15 tons, have undergone technical improvements and are intended for fortified bunkers deep underground where chemical or nuclear weapons are stored. This would include the uranium enrichment facility Fordu, hidden deep inside the mountains near the Iranian city of Qom. 
 
Israel, the U.S. and most other Western nations are convinced that Iran is racing to create an atomic weapon of mass destruction, which it may then aim at the Jewish State.
 
The Islamic Republic has continued its nuclear development activities despite increased sanctions and four resolutions by the U.N. Security Council condemning Iran for its defiance of the ban on its nuclear development.
 
There are currently 11,000 centrifuges active in enrichment facilities" in Iran, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was quoted by state media as saying late on Tuesday in a meeting with supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and senior regime officials.
 
That was more than the 10,000 centrifuges Iran was last said to have had operating, according to a May 25 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
 
The failure of talks between Iran and six world powers to secure a breakthrough in curbing what the West fears is a drive to develop nuclear weapons has raised international concerns that Israel, widely assumed to be the Middle East’s only nuclear-armed state, may opt for a go-it-alone military strike.
 
Israel has warned the West it thinks it is only a matter of time before Iran’s nuclear program achieves a “zone of immunity” in which bombs will not be able to effectively strike uranium enrichment facilities buried deep underground.
 
Iran says its program is solely for peaceful purposes.
 
On a visit to Jerusalem this month, Clinton said Israel and Washington were “on the same page” with respect to Iran, calling Iran’s latest proposals to world power talks on the issue “nonstarters.”
 
“Our own choice is clear, we will use all elements of American power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” Clinton said.

Obama signs security bill to show support for Israel ahead of Romney visit

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 28 July 2012 11:46
Obama signs the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act in the Oval Office (Reuters)President Barack Obama signed a bill on Friday to strengthen U.S.-Israeli military ties as he sought to reassure American Jewish voters of his commitment to the two countries’ close alliance on the eve of a visit to Israel by his Republican rival, Mitt Romney.
 
Obama used a White House ceremony to announce the United States would soon provide Israel with an additional $70 million in funding for its short-range rocket shield known as “Iron Dome,” a project strongly backed by the powerful U.S. pro-Israel lobby.
 
His focus on strengthening cooperation with Israel appeared timed to upstage Romney, who has accused the president of undermining Washington’s relationship with its number one partner in the Middle East.
 
Romney, whose Olympics-week visit to London has been plagued by diplomatic stumbles, will travel on Saturday to Israel, a stop his aides hope will resonate with Jewish voters at home.
 
He is expected to hold talks on Sunday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has had a strained relationship with Obama.
 
As Obama signed the bill at his desk in the Oval Office, he said it underscored his administration’s “unshakeable commitment” to Israel’s security. Congress passed the legislation last week with broad support from Republicans and Obama’s Democrats.
 
“I have made it a top priority for my administration to deepen cooperation with Israel across a whole spectrum of security issues,” Obama said in the Oval Office.
 
He was flanked by U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer and Congressman Howard Berman, the bill's sponsors, and several prominent Jewish leaders, including Lee Rosenberg, chairman of AIPAC, the leading pro-Israel lobby, and Richard Stone, chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.
 
Obama, criticized by some of Israel’s U.S. supporters for being too tough on a close ally, wants to shore up his support among Jewish voters, who could prove critical in battleground states like Florida and Pennsylvania in the Nov. 6 election.
 
Obama received 78 percent of the Jewish vote in the 2008 election, but a nationwide Gallup poll in June showed him down to 64 percent backing versus Romney’s 29 percent.
 
Obama angered many Israelis and their U.S. supporters last year when he insisted any negotiations on the borders of a future Palestinian state begin on the basis of lines that existed before Israel captured the West Bank and Gaza Strip in a 1967 war. His Middle East peace efforts have stalled.
 
Obama visited Israel as a candidate in the 2008 campaign but has not done so as president. He has insisted security ties with Israel have never been stronger, though he has pressed Netanyahu to hold off on any attack on Iran's nuclear sites to give diplomacy and sanctions more time to work.
 
Romney has accused Obama of being too hard on Israel and not tough enough with Iran.
 
The new bill calls for enhanced cooperation with Israel -- the staunchest U.S. ally in the Middle East and a major beneficiary of military aid -- on missile defense and intelligence, and increased access to advanced weapons.
 
Obama said Defense Secretary Leon Panetta would visit Israel soon to discuss further cooperation at a time of “heightened tensions in the region.” Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is faces growing international pressure over his brutal crackdown against a 16-month-old uprising.

AC/DC Rocks Iran's Nuclear Program

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 26 July 2012 18:27
Natanz FacilityI was caught
In the middle of a railroad track (Thunder)
And I knew there was no turning back (Thunder)
My mind raced, 
And I thought what could I do (Thunder)
And I knew, 
There was no help, no help from you (Thunder)
Reports began circulating on Thursday that Iran's nuclear facilities have been hit with a computer virus that plays the hit song "Thunderstruck" by Australian heavy metal band AC/DC.
 
Workers allegedly have to endure the song being played unexpectedly at full volume, sometimes in the middle of the night.
 
There has been no official confirmation of the attack from Iran, but sources cite a series of leaked e-mails purportedly from the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran.
 
An unnamed Iranian scientist e-mailed Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer for Finnish Internet security firm F-Secure, saying that the facilities at Natanz and Fordo, near Qom, were hit by a worm.
 
The malware, in addition to blaring out AC/DC at any given moment, also reportedly disables network connectivity at the two sites as an interesting side effect.
 
Hypponen told the media that he had received the e-mails and that he had been e-mailing the scientist about the incident over the weekend.
 
He sent a redacted copy of the e-mail to reporters, which said, “I am writing you to inform you that our nuclear program has once again been compromised and attacked by a new worm with exploits which have shut down our automation network at Natanz and another facility Fordo near Qom.”
 
Another e-mail made reference to AC/DC's Thunderstruck being played “on several workstations in the middle of the night with the volume maxed out.”
 
It’s not the first time that the Iranian nuclear program has been the target of malware.
 
The destructive Stuxnet worm has now affected around 60 per cent of computers in Iran, and is widely held responsible for wrecking centrifuges at the Nantaz nuclear facility.
 
Iran has confirmed that work has halted several times at the facility because of “technical issues,” and use of the centrifuges has dropped by 30 per cent.
 
Stuxnet was thought at first to be the work of Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, but experts have recently begun to say the United States is more likely behind the attack.
 
Earlier this year, Iran was also hit by the robust Flame virus, which was likened to a 'targeted killing' for computer systems. Israel was also immediately accused of developing the virus.
 
Many experts believe that the future of warfare will heavily rely on a country’s ability to “spike” their enemies’ computer networks -- while rocking them into submission.

Hizbullah Not a Terror Organization

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 20:24
Hizbullah posterThe European Union on Tuesday rejected Israel's request that it categorize Hizbullah as a terrorist organization.
Cypriot Foreign Minister Gujarat Cossack-Marcolis, who presently holds the EU's rotating presidency, said "there is no consensus on the issue, because Hizbullah also has an active political arm."
 
She added that the matter is open for reconsideration if "tangible evidence" that Hizbullah is involved in terrorist activity can be brought.
 
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman had requested the EU classify Hizbullah as a terrorist organization after last week's deadly bus bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis and wounded scores more.
 
"It's time to declare Hizbullah as a terrorist organization," Lieberman told the EU. "It will signal to the Israeli public that the international community stands for what is right."
 
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu immediately charged Iran and its proxy Hizbullah were behind the attack.
 
"This has great significance and demonstrates that Iran and Hizbullah are responsible for a wave of terror operations on this continent (Europe)," he said.
 
This "wave of Iranian terrorism by Hizbullah we are encountering will bring about determined action," Netanyahu warned.
 
Mossad chief Tamir Pardo and and Shin Bet head Yoram Cohen briefed the cabinet earlier this week, saying they were ramping up intelligence operations against Iran and Hizbullah around the world.
 
They noted that Iran and Hizbullah had targeted Israelis in more than 20 countries around the world the past two years, though the vast majority of attempts had failed, or been thwarted. 
 
Also this week, IDF chief of staff Benny Gantz told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense c'tee that Israel had thwarted at least fifteen attacks targeting Israelis abroad prior to last week's bombing.
 
Some observers, given Hizbullah's history, what constitutes "tangible proof" for European officials.
 
While Hizbullah claims it does not carry out terror attacks, Western and Israeli officials have long blamed Hizbullah for direct involvement in, or orchestrating by proxy:
 
The 1982–1983 Tyre headquarters bombings.
The April 1983 U.S. Embassy bombing.
The 1983 barracks bombing that killed 241 US marines, 58 French paratroopers and 6 civilians at the US and French barracks in Beirut.
The Hijacking of TWA Flight 847 in 1985.
The Lebanon hostage crisis from 1982 to 1992, including the kidnapping and torture-murder of CIA Beirut station chief William Buckley.
The 1992 Israeli Embassy attack in Buenos Aires, killing 29, in Argentina.
The 1994 AMIA bombing of a Jewish cultural centre, killing 85, in Argentina.
The 1996 Khobar Towers bombing, which killed 19 Saudi citizens, and 1 American.
The 2000 cross-border kidnapping and murder of IDF soldiers Adi Avitan, Benyamin Avraham, and Omar Sawaidwere.
In 2002, Singapore accused Hizbullah of recruiting Singaporeans in a failed 1990s plot to attack US and Israeli ships in the Singapore Straits.
The 2005 assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri for which 4 Hizbullah members were indicted by the Hague.
The 2006 kidnapping and murder of IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, which precipitated the 2006 Israel-Lebanon War.
Indiscriminately targeting Israeli civilians with rocket fire during the ensuing 34 day conflict.
The January 15, 2008, bombing of a U.S. Embassy vehicle in Beirut.
In 2009, a Hizbullah plot in Egypt was uncovered, where Egyptian authorities arrested 49 men for planning attacks against Israeli and Egyptian targets in the Sinai Peninsula.
A failed 2011 bombing in Istanbul targeting the Israeli consul, which left eight dead.
A spate of bombings targeting Israeli diplomats in India, Georgia, and Thailand in early 2012.

New 'Mahdi' Cyber Campaign Targeting Iran

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 18 July 2012 19:59
New Mahdi CyberSecurity experts have uncovered a new cyber espionage campaign targeting Iran and other Middle Eastern countries, which, they say, is unique because it is the first such operation using communications tools written in Persian, Reuters reported.
 
Israeli security company Seculert and Russia's Kaspersky Lab said on Tuesday that they identified more than 800 victims of the operation.
 
The targets include critical infrastructure companies, engineering students, financial services firms and government embassies located in five Middle Eastern countries, with the majority of the infections in Iran.
 
Seculert and Kaspersky declined to identify specific targets of the campaign, which they believe began at least eight months ago.
 
The perpetrators of the attacks have not been identified.
 
"It's for sure somebody who is fluent in Persian, but we don't know the origin of those guys," said Seculert Chief Technology Officer Aviv Raff.
 
The Mahdi Trojan lets remote attackers steal files from infected PCs and monitor emails and instant messages, Seculert and Kaspersky said. It can also record audio, log keystrokes and take screen shots of activity on those computers.
 
The firms said they believed multiple gigabytes of data have been uploaded from targeted machines.
 
"Somebody is trying to build a dossier of a larger scale on something," Raff said. "We don't know what they are going to do at the end."
 
Researchers have said that they believe nation states were behind the Flame virus, which was discovered earlier this year, and Stuxnet, which was uncovered in 2011.
 
Seculert and Kaspersky dubbed the campaign ‘Mahdi,’ a term referring to the prophesied redeemer of Islam, because evidence suggests the attackers used a folder with that name as they developed the software to run the project, according to Reuters.
 
They also included a text file named ‘mahdi.txt’ in the malicious software that infected target computers.

Arab Man 'Falls' from Window After Selling Land to Israel?

Category: Reports
Created on Monday, 16 July 2012 11:04
Arab Man Falls from WindowA retired Arab security officer died on Sunday of injuries sustained after “falling” from a third-floor window while in custody.
 
The 63-year-old man, identified by one source as Ahmed Mansour, was pronounced dead at a Ramallah hospital, where he was transported after suffering serious injuries, with one source saying it was unclear if he had fallen or was pushed to his death for allegedly selling land to Israel. Another source said he jumped.
 
"This citizen is a retired security officer who was being held by the intelligence services in Ramallah on suspicion of corruption involving the sale of land," a security source told AFP on condition of anonymity.
 
"He fell from a building and died, but we do not know if he fell or was pushed," the source added.
 
The details were confirmed by a second security source, who said the man was being investigated on suspicion of having "manipulated land records and sold land to Israel." Mansour had been charged with returning land that had been sold to Jews.
 
Medical sources said the man's body was taken to the Institute for Forensic Medicine in Abu Dis, an Arab town in Area B (PA jurisdiction except for security, which is under IDF) near Jerusalem, for an autopsy, according to AFP.

Abbas to Meet Clinton, Hollande in Paris

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 05 July 2012 09:28
Abbas and Hollande in ParisPalestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas will meet with US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and the French President Francois Hollande this week.
 
Erekat said Abbas will stress the importance of releasing PA jailed in Israel when he meets with the leaders, according to a statement from his office.
 
He added that Abbas will also meet EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton, and the British, German and Norwegian foreign ministers during his two-day trip to Paris.
 
World diplomats are currently gathering for a "Friends of Syria" meeting in the French capital. The summit is a bid by world leaders to bridge Arab and Western positions over the conflict in Syria.
 
However, Russia – which says the group is biased in favor of opposition to President Bashar Assad – refuses to attend.
 
A spokesman for Abbas' office said last month that the PA leader will only meet with Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu if Israel agrees to free seriously ill prisoners, including those detained prior to the Oslo accords.
 
Specifying pre-Oslo and sick prisoners is a step down from Abbas' previous position, which was the unconditional release of all PA prisoners from Israeli prisons.
 
However, the prisoner issue remains only one of several preconditions Abbas has thrown in the path of renewed peace talks between Ramallah and Jerusalem.
 
He has also demanded Israel agree to the indefensible pre-1967 lines as the borders for a future PA state and impose a second building freeze in Judea and Samaria before he agrees to come to the negotiating table.
 
Israeli officials note that a previous 10-month building freeze by Israel aimed at meeting Abbas' demand was rebuffed and not only met with additional preconditions, but a unilateral statehood bid at the United Nations in violation of the 1993 Oslo Accords as well.
 
They say Abbas' current raft of preconditions are a fait accompli intended to forestall talks that would require him to make concessions he has not prepared his people for.
 
Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said he is ready to resume talks immediately without preconditions from either side.

 

We Can Destroy US Bases 'In Minutes'

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 04 July 2012 20:48
Iran fires long-range missileIran on Wednesday claimed it has the capability to destroy US bases “within minutes.”
 
US "bases are all in range of our missiles, and the occupied lands [Israel] are also good targets for us," Revolutionary Guard commander Amir Ali Haji Zadehthe Fars news agency.
 
The three-day Great Prophet 7 training exercise - which simulated rapidly releasing batteries of hundreds of guided missiles and Iran-made drones at mock-ups of US bases - wrapped up on Wednesday.
 
Zadehthe claimed that 35 US bases are within the 2,000 km range of Iran’s rockets, although the actual number of bases within this area is closer to 10.
 
Iran's bellicose rhetoric comes amid rising tension between Iran and the US, already locked in a long-running stand-off over Iran’s nuclear program.
 
Washington, the European Union, Gulf Arab states, and Israel all believe Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons in contravention of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
 
Worldwide sanctions led by Washington and its European allies have reduced Iranian oil export volumes by 40 percent in the past year.
 
In response, earlier this week, Iranian deputies again proposed a blockade of the vital Strait of Hormuz through which a fifth of the world's oil flows.
 
The US immediately upped its already strong naval presence in the region as a warning to Iran.
 
Meanwhile, on-going talks between Tehran and the world powers in Istanbul have so far failed to find a compromise on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear ambitions.

Egypt to Block Jewish Pilgrims From Holy Site

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 20:23
Sinai Security Barrier Construction RetuersEgypt’s Foreign Ministry said Wednesday it had told Israel that it would not be “appropriate” for Israeli pilgrims to make an annual visit to the tomb of a 19th-century Jewish holy man in the Nile Delta.
 
Egypt notified Israel two months ago that it would be “impossible to hold the annual ceremony because of the political and security situation in the country,” the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.
 
Wednesday's announcement came as Muslim Brotherhood activists mobilized to block the pilgrimage route.
 
Ceremonies at the tomb of Rabbi Yaakov Abuchatzeira have triggered yearly political sparring in Egypt throughout most of the last decade.
 
An Islamist politician involved in organizing protests against the march meanwhile said that visiting the gravesite in the village of Daymouta, 180 kilometers (112 miles) north of Cairo would be a “suicide mission” for Israelis.
 
“Normalization (of relations) with Israel is forced on the people, and the visits too come against the will of the people and despite popular rejection,” said Gamal Heshmat of the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Egypt’s daily Al-Ahram newspaper reported Tuesday that 31 parties and groups had joined this year’s campaign to block Israeli pilgrims from reaching the site.
 
A son to a chief rabbi of Morocco, Yaakov Abuchatzeira was revered by some Jews as a mystic renowned for his piety and for performing miracles. The elderly rabbi was making his way from his native Morocco to the Holy Land in 1879, when he fell ill and died in the Egyptian city of Damanhour near Alexandria.
 
After Egypt and Israel signed a peace treaty in 1979, Jewish devotees — mostly of Moroccan origin — have traveled annually to the site. But Egypt has limited the numbers of pilgrims.
 
In 2001 and 2004, two court orders banned the ceremony after opponents filed legal challenges.
 
In 2009, Egypt officially denied the pilgrims entry because the anniversary fell while Israel was conducing an offensive in Gaza.

Hamas agrees to Egypt-brokered ceasefire with Israel

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 20 June 2012 20:39
Hamas compound damaged after an Israeli air strikeThe military wing of Hamas said late on Wednesday it had agreed to an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Israel, after three days of bloodshed in and around Gaza.
 
“In response to the Egyptian efforts to try and stop the aggression on our people, we at al-Qassam Brigades and all resistance factions declare our commitment to stop this round of confrontation, as long as (Israel) commits to stopping its crimes,” said a statement from Ezzedine Qassam Brigades.
 
The statement comes after three days of violence in which eight Palestinians were killed while militants have fired scores of rockets at the Jewish state, one of which slammed into a border police outpost, wounding four.
 
The Ezzedine Qassam Brigades statement noted they had fired 96 rockets and nine mortars at the Jewish state during the recent wave of violence, in a rare show of force from the group that had been observing a de facto truce on rocket attacks.
 
“Our confrontation with the enemy in this round was at the minimal level of fire and responses, this is a message that the (Israeli) leaders should understand very well,” Qassam added in the statement.
 
As the violence rumbled on, a senior Gaza official had told AFP that Egypt was in contact with Israel and the militant groups in a bid to restore calm.
 
“The Palestinian factions are ready to return to the calm as long as Israel stops its attacks,” he said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
 
Prior to the Qassam statement, two Palestinian youths were wounded in an airstrike on a Hamas training site in northern Gaza. A second attack at another Hamas training camp in Nuseirat in the centre of the territory left no casualties.
 
The Israeli military said its aircraft “targeted two terror sites in the northern Gaza Strip. Direct hits were confirmed.”
 
“The targeting is in response to over 75 rockets that were fired at Israel during the past three days,” it said.
 
An Israeli police spokeswoman told AFP that on Wednesday, 58 rockets and mortars hit southern Israel. She added that eight people were being treated for shock.
 
In an earlier Israeli airstrike at a farm in the Zeitun neighborhood, just east of Gaza City, 14-year-old Moamen al-Adam was killed and his father seriously wounded, medics said. Another two people were also wounded.
 
An Israeli military spokeswoman told AFP that “during the day, rockets were fired at Israel from a populated civilian area in the northern Gaza Strip.”
 
“This afternoon Israeli army aircraft targeted a rocket launching squad in this area,” she said. 
 
Earlier on Wednesday, a missile strike on a motorcycle in the southern border city of Rafah killed 21-year-old Ghaleb Ermilat, whom locals said was a militant of the Islamist movement Hamas which rules the territory.
 
The Israeli military said he was a “global jihad operative” who was behind a deadly ambush along the Israeli-Egyptian border on Monday morning that killed an Israeli civilian and sparked a firefight in which two of the gunmen were killed.
 
A third is believed to have fled back to Sinai.
 
The army said that besides Ermilat, another “global jihad terror operative” involved in Monday’s ambush was seriously wounded in the raid, naming him as Mohammed Rashdan, a Rafah resident born in 1984.
 
It said Ermilat and Rashdan were members of Tawhid wal Jihad, a “global jihad terror movement, that is responsible for ongoing terror attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers.”
 
“Rashdan’s terror activities included weapon transfers, supplying explosive devices to terror operatives, firing rockets at Israel, sniper and mortar fire, and smuggling terror operatives to and from Gaza,” the army said in a statement.
 
Ermilat and Rashdan had planned the ambush and were “actively involved in planning another attack,” it said.
 
On Tuesday, a previously unknown Islamist group claimed responsibility for the ambush in a video carried a U.S.-based monitoring service, SITE Intelligence.
 
Made by the “Mujahedeen Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem,” the clip showed two gunmen standing in front of al-Qaeda’s black flag saying they were poised to carry out an attack against Israel.
 
One claimed to be from Egypt, while the other said he was from Saudi Arabia.
 
Israel’s chief of general staff Lieutenant General Benny Gantz warned on Wednesday that the army would respond to the recent surge in militant activity.
 
“The army is ready, and stands powerful and prepared to continue react and initiate, and provide a response for every threat at any time,” he said at the graduation ceremony for officer cadets.

Al-Qaeda Urges Egypt to Cancel Treaty with Israel

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 17 June 2012 16:00
Ayman al-Zawahri Al-Qaeda’s leader has urged Egypt to cancel its peace treaty with Israel and to establish Islamic rule, The Associated Press (AP) reported.
 
He said the goal is to stop Israel from turning Jerusalem into a Jewish city.
 
Ayman al-Zawahri issued his 10th message to Egypt since taking over al-Qaeda’s leadership after founder Osama bin Laden was killed in an American raid in Pakistan last year.
 
His 47-minute audio recording was posted Sunday on jihadi websites, according to the AP.
 
He charged that Egypt’s ruling military council takes orders from the United States.
 
Al-Zawahri called on the Islamic movements to unite against what he described as "the secular American schemes that only seeks evil to Egypt."
 
He continued to criticize Pakistan for demolishing bin Laden’s house to prevent it from becoming a shrine.

Recognize Jerusalem as Undivided Capital

Category: News
Created on Saturday, 09 June 2012 06:55
Israel flagMembers of the International Israel Allies Caucus Foundation met in Washington, D.C., this week and called on the United States to recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel, CBN News reported.
 
Several Jewish and Christian leaders, as well as pro-Israel lawmakers, attended the group's Jerusalem Day celebration on Capitol Hill, which took place on Wednesday.
 
Representative Allen West (R-FL) asserted that, "Jerusalem is the rightful capital of the Jewish people, and it should stay that way."
 
"It should always be unified under one simple flag, that star of David, because that is David's city,” he said.
 
"We have to be Israel's friend, and I would implore this president, who I just believe in my heart is not Israel's friend, to have a change of heart," Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill) told CBN News.
 
Legislation was passed on Capitol Hill in 1995 calling for the U.S. Embassy in Israel to be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Seventeen years later and that still has not happened.  
 
Successive administrations, from President Clinton to President Obama, have used a waiver to delay that decision and keep the Embassy in Tel Aviv. 
 
"For us, the greatest country in the world, the United States of America, the greatest country the world has ever known, to be fearful of moving our embassy to Jerusalem, in my opinion, is a disgrace and we need to do that and do that right now," GOP Florida Senate candidate Dave Weldon said. 
 
"They don't need Jerusalem," said Rabbi Benny Elon, President of the Israel Allies Caucus. "They just want to make sure that we, the Jews, shall not have it." 

Israel accuses Iran of nuclear deception ‘strategy’ to work covertly on weapons

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 06 June 2012 20:52
Ali Asghar Soltanieh Irans chief IAEA delegateIsrael has renewed its criticism of Iran’s atomic agenda on Wednesday, accusing Tehran of working covertly on nuclear weapons while deceiving the international community by saying it does not want such arms.
 
An Israeli delegate to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Iran had been working under a strategy he dubbed as “deception, defiance and concealment.”
 
Iran dismisses IAEA and international suspicions that it may have worked covertly on nuclear weapons and insists it has no interest in possessing such arms, saying its disputed uranium enrichment program is geared only toward generating nuclear fuel.
 
But critics note that it has blocked the restart of an IAEA probe into its alleged secret weapons work for nearly five years, as well as refused foreign offers of reactor fuel. It has instead expanded enrichment, and because the process can make both such fuel and the fissile material used to arm nuclear weapons, international concerns have grown about Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.
 
Accusing Iran of “proceeding in (an) accelerated path towards acquiring nuclear weapons capability,” Israeli envoy Ehoud Azoulay told the 35-nation IAEA board that the Islamic Republic was employing a strategy of “deception, defiance and concealment,” to gain time for developing such weapons.
 
In separate comments to The Associated Press he alluded to the military option, warning that “time is running out ... for a political solution.”
 
Israel is particularly critical, noting that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for the eradication of Israel. It and the United States have not ruled out military strikes against the Islamic Republic if diplomacy fails to curb a nuclear program they see as a cover for making weapons. While Wednesday’s comments from Israel were not new, they mirrored the high tensions that could result in such an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities 
 
Last month, six world powers − the United States, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany − confronted Tehran over its intention to enrich uranium.
 
But Russia and China have both resisted Western sanctions imposed on Tehran over its nuclear program, with China one of the biggest buyers of Iranian oil.
 
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is also visiting China, said Wednesday that further sanctions on Iran would be “counterproductive.”
 
Russia is preparing to host the latest round of talks between world powers and Iranian negotiators later this month in a bid to find a diplomatic solution to the standoff over Iran’s nuclear program.
 
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Wednesday told the visiting Iranian president that Beijing opposes any Middle Eastern country seeking to acquire nuclear weapons, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
 
“China opposes any Middle East country’s push to acquire nuclear weapons and upholds that the Iranian nuclear issue should be addressed through diplomatic channels in an impartial way,” Wen told Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
 
He was speaking on the sidelines of the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization regional grouping.

‘Thunder’ will fall on Israel if it attacks

Category: News
Created on Sunday, 03 June 2012 09:50
Any attack by Israel on Iran will blow back on the Jewish state “like thunder,” Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Sunday.Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
 
Khamenei also said that the international community’s suspicion that Iran was seeking nuclear weapons is based on a “lie.”
 
If the Israelis “make any misstep or wrong action, it will fall on their heads like thunder,” Khamenei said in a speech marking the 1989 death of his predecessor and founder of Iran's Islamic republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
 
Allegations that Iran was trying to develop atomic bombs were false, he also said.
 
“International political circles and media talk about the danger of a nuclear Iran, that a nuclear Iran is dangerous. I say that they lie. They are deceiving,” Khamenei said.
 
“What they are afraid of -- and should be afraid of -- is not a nuclear but an Islamic Iran.”
 
He added: “They invoke the term ‘nuclear weapons’ based on a lie. They magnify and highlight the issue in their propaganda based on a lie. Their goal is to divert minds and public opinion from the (economic) events that are happening in the U.S. and Europe.”
 
‘Idiotic…what Westerners do’
 
Khamenei also accused the United States and its allies of talking about the threat of a nuclear Iran to cover up their own problems, state television reported.
 
“What Americans and Westerners do is idiotic. They magnify the nuclear issue to cover up their own problems,” Khamenei added.
 
“Iran’s nuclear issue has been put at the top of world developments and they are deceitfully using the term nuclear weapons ... to divert attention from the problems inside America and Europe.”
 
Meanwhile, Iran has also criticized and warned the West on Saturday. 
 
Iranian military commander, Brigadier-General Yahya Rahim Safav, was reported by Press TV as saying that U.S. bases in the region were vulnerable to the Islamic Republic’s missiles. 
 
His commenters were an apparent response to U.S. officials who have said Washington was ready to use military force to stop what it suspects is Iran’s goal to develop a nuclear weapons capability.

UN to Warn World About Flame Virus Risks

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 29 May 2012 20:17
PA Internet crashedA United Nations agency that aids member nations in securing their national infrastructures is set to warn member nations about the risk posed by the 'Flame' virus.
 
Flame is a computer virus that Tehran says is infecting its computers and which independent experts say "most dangerous cyberwarfare tool ever created."
 
One technology reporter for the Herald Sun – who estimated Flame was 20 times more powerful than any virus seen before – facetiously joked the virus could "bring the world to its knees."
 
"This is the most serious (cyber) warning we have ever put out," Marco Obiso, cyber security coordinator for the UN's Geneva-based International Telecommunications Union, said.
 
"They should be on alert," he added.
 
Analysts say evidence suggests Flame may have been built on behalf of the same nation - or nations - that commissioned the Stuxnet worm that attacked Iran's nuclear program in 2010,.
 
"I think it is a much more serious threat than Stuxnet," Obiso said.
 
He said the ITU will set up a program to collect data - including virus samples - to track Flame's spread around the globe and observe any changes in its composition.
 
At present, Flame is known to have struck at least 600 specific computer systems in Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority.
 
Flame does with one virus what hackers have previously had to deploy many separate viruses to do. That means it can deliver a more comprehensive picture than ever before of what a computer is being used for.
 
Boldizsar Bencsath, a computer expert at Budapest University's Laboratory of Cryptography and Systems Security that has been analyzing flame, told Radio Free Europe that Flame has now been spotted in Hungary.
 
According to him, "the individual things Flame does are not unique or unknown." What sets Flame apart is that it puts all those functions "in a single, enormously large software package."
 
"Generally speaking, [Flame's] functionality is similar to other malware components that for example, record keyboard activities," he says. "The unusual thing is that it is complex, highly complex. That means that there are lots of different functionality modules in the code and therefore the code is enormously large."
 
The Russian computer security Kaspersky Lab told AFP the Flame software package totals almost 20 Mb in size when fully deployed.
 
"This is a targeted attack, says Bencsath. "This tool is used for targeted attacks; that means that normal home computers most likely are not at any risk."
 
His remarks echoed those of Greg Hughes, CEO of Israel's Symantec, who told Arutz Sheva that the Flame virus found in Iran is the cyber-warfare equivalent of a “targeted killing.”
 
"This is a specifically targeted and highly precise attack. This attack is like a precision targeted killing rather than mass slaughter," he added, noting that the file – or a collection of files – would have to be directly inserted into vulnerable computers.
 
Flame has been described as a "data-stealing virus" and "cyber-espionage worm" designed to collect and delete sensitive information. It is capable of taking screen captures, downloading process logs, recording keystrokes, and copying files stored on hard drives.
 
Iran – which has openly accused Israel of deploying Flame – claimed they had neutralized Flame and that its creators had not been successful.
 
However, Iranian officials claimed to have killed the less powerful Stuxnet virus several times before finally eradicating it almost two years after it was found.
 
Symantec’s Hughes noted, "You have to look at this with a perspective of time," he added. "They recently discovered a number of attacks, but this began two years ago."
 
Israeli officials have refused to say whether Jerusalem fathered Flame, but Minister of Strategic Affairs Moshe Yaalon did say, "Whoever sees the Iranian threat as a meaningful threat – it is reasonable he would take various measures, including this one."

‘Atomic weapons against Islam,’ says Ahmadinejad as Israel warns world powers not to waver in Iran talks

Category: News
Created on Wednesday, 23 May 2012 08:25
US flag Iranian flagIslam forbids atomic weapons and other arms of mass destruction, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad insisted on Wednesday ahead of his country’s nuclear talks with world powers in Baghdad, as Israel urged world powers not to waver in key talks with Iran.
 
“Based on Islamic teachings and the clear fatwa (edict) of the supreme leader, the production and use of weapons of mass destruction is haram (forbidden) and have no place in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s defense doctrine,” he said.
 
Ahmadinejad’s message was read out at a conference in the western city of Borujerd to commemorate Iranian victims of chemical weapons during a 1980-1988 war against Iraq, the official news agency IRNA reported.
 
World powers were to hold crunch talks in the Iraqi capital on Wednesday with Iran to try to persuade Tehran to suspend sensitive nuclear work.
 
Ahmadinejad’s mention of a fatwa against nuclear weapons by Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, referred to an edict which officials say he laid down in either 2004 or 2005.
 
Though no published fatwa exists, Iranian scholars point out that declarations by prominent ayatollahs can later take on the weight of a fatwa.
 
Khamenei has spoken out against nuclear weapons on several occasions, most recently on Feb. 22 when he said that possessing an atomic bomb “constitutes a major sin.”
 
“The Iranian nation has never been seeking an atomic weapon and never will be,” while developing nuclear energy was in Iran's interest, he said.
 
The United States has seized on Khamenei’s stance as a possible basis to resolve the dangerous standoff with Iran.
 
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said last month that Iranian officials “point to a fatwa that the supreme leader has issued against the pursuit of nuclear weapons.”
 
World powers expect Tehran to back up that position by demonstrating “clearly in the actions they propose that they have truly abandoned any nuclear weapons ambition,” she said.
 
Meanwhile, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak urged world powers not to waver in key talks with Iran on Wednesday, warning that any failure to halt enrichment would see Tehran obtain a nuclear weapon.
 
“In Baghdad, we must watch out that partial concessions do not allow Iran to avoid a tightening of sanctions,” he said, just hours before the start of a second round of talks between Tehran and six world powers in the Iraqi capital.
 
“Without strengthening the current painful sanctions, Iran will continue towards a nuclear capability,” the defense minister told Israel’s public radio.
 
“We must not blink, give up or capitulate until the very last minute,” he said.
 
“If they let them continue, Iran will keep on enriching uranium from 20 percent to 60 percent and 90 percent and they really will get a nuclear weapon. I don’t know exactly when but it will happen,” he warned.
 
“Now is the time for the entire world to stop them,” said Barak.
 
A day ahead of the second round, U.N. nuclear watchdog chief Yukiya Amano said his agency was poised to ink a deal with Tehran, in a move which was greeted with deep suspicion by Israel, which sees Iran's willingness to talk as a ploy to win an easing of sanctions and to gain more time for enrichment.
 
Israel has also poured scorn on the P5+1 talks, with Barak deriding its demands of Tehran as “minimalist” and saying they would never be enough to make Iran halt its nuclear program.

Arab Refusal to Sing Hatikva Raises Ire at Hebrew U

Category: Reports
Created on Monday, 21 May 2012 21:05
Hebrew UniversityLast Thursday, Jewish students and parents attending the Hebrew University graduation ceremony for students who earned their BA degrees in Social Sciences were shocked when Arab students refused to sing Israel's national anthem.
 
As is customary in such ceremonies, the ceremony was concluded by the singing of Israel's national anthem, Hatikva. However, Arutz Sheva learned that a considerable group of Arab graduates chose to remain seated and silent when Hatikva was sung.
 
Other graduates and their families say that the Arab students refusal was jarring and inappropriate.
 
One father of an excited new graduate told Arutz Sheva "This is not a single event, but a symptom of a much larger phenomenon in which Israeli Arabs refuse to recognize the Jewish character of the state.
 
"We lie to ourselves as a people: they enjoy everything that Israel has to offer, but at the moment of truth they do not identify with the country. If they are unable to sing the anthem, at least stand and show respect."
 
Last month, Supreme Court Justice Salim Jubran chose not to sing the national anthem at the end of the inaugural ceremony of President of the Supreme Court Asher Grunis. He did, however, stand to show his respect.
 
Jubran's decision infuriated nationalist lawmakers who charged his "insolence" was a "degradation to the Jewish state."
 
Supreme Court Justice Eliyakim Rubenstein defended Jubran, saying he believed it would be wrong "to require Arab citizens to sing words that do not speak to their hearts and do not reflect their heritage. Common sense anywhere tells you this."
 
Hatikva expresses the Jewish longing to return and be a free people in their homeland, Zion and Jerusalem, but does not in any way negate the presence of non-Jews in Israel.
 
At the same time, Rubinstein said he did not support altering the text of Hatikva, saying: "Whoever joins us in singing it, bless him, but it must remain a personal decision."
 
However, Druze lawmaker and Deputy Knesset speaker Ayoub Kara has said he believes Israel's non-Jewish citizens should sing Hatikva and recognize the Jewish character of the state.
 
"Without Jewish rule there would be no democracy in Israel," Kara said.

EU 'Recommendations' Blast Israel

Category: News
Created on Friday, 18 May 2012 22:06
Catherine AshtonAs part of the European Union’s assessment of its partnership with 12 neighboring countries known as the “European Neighborhood Policy” (ENP), the European Commission and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton listed a set of characteristically harsh ‘recommendations’ regarding relations with Israel.
 
The recommendations, titled “Delivering on a new European Neighbourhood Policy,” include a call on Israel “to continue to step up its efforts to minimise settler violence in the occupied Palestinian territory and to bring all perpetrators to justice” and “address the excessive use of administrative detention.”
 
“The situation in the occupied territories, in the context of a stalled peace process and worrying developments on the ground, including increased settlement activity in East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank, remained tense,” they said.
 
“Palestinian economic and social rights remain hampered by Israeli restrictions on the freedom of movement. Restrictions on movement and access have a negative impact on the ability of Palestinians to obtain Schengen visas. Property rights came under particular strain and the risk of forced displacement of Bedouin communities increased. “
 
They also mentioned “a trend that became apparent in 2010 continued with an unprecedented number of bills that can be labelled as "discriminatory" or even "anti-democratic being tabled in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament.”
 
The EU report also said “progress on the situation of the Arab minority was limited. Women’s rights have become the subject of increasing debate as a result of a more aggressive attitude on the part of the ultra-Orthodox groups.”
 
“The EU remains one of the largest donors supporting Israeli civil society efforts to promote human rights and conflict resolution. This exposes the EU to some public and government criticism,” the report continued.
 
On the economic situation in Israel, the report said that “despite good economic growth and low unemployment, Israel has the highest poverty rate in the OECD and remains characterised by deep socio-economic cleavages.”
 
The only positive remark in the report was in reference to Israel’s "good performance" in the fight against corruption, and continued to protect the independence of the judiciary.images 06-08-09
 
The European Neighborhood Policy report, which was drafted by Catherine Ashton and EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Füle came one day after EU Foreign Ministers issued a statement on the Middle East Peace Process, sharply criticizing Israel for its policy regarding the so-called “settlements in the West Bank,” or, more accurately- Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. 

Al-Zahar Blasts European 'Hypocrisy' on Hamas

Category: Reports
Created on Friday, 18 May 2012 14:59
Mahmoud al-ZaharHamas co-founder Mahmoud al-Zahar accused the West of hypocrisy and prejudice towards the terror movement on Thursday.
 
“Let me correct you, the movement is not controlling, but we govern according to the results of the election and because the West’s policy is against the development of the Islamic policy, it is described as controlling. We must govern in Gaza and in the West Bank and Jerusalem, because that is the results of the elections," al-Zahar told Euronews reporter, Mohammed Shaikhibrahim.
 
“The West is again being hypocritical and against the Muslim world and Islamic influences, in particular it doesn’t want to accept the results of free and fair elections, which all the world saw were free and fair."
 
However, al-Zahar declined to comment on the bloody 2007 putsch in which Hamas seized Gaza from the Fatah-ruled Palestinian Authority after being frustrated in the halls of power, and firmly blamed PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas for recent failures in reconciling the rival factions.
 
“First, the agreement made in Cairo over four years ago said we needed to form a national unity government, which would not include members of Hamas or Fatah, or even from other Palestinian factions. That is the first point in the Doha agreement," al-Zahar told Shaikhibrahim.
 
“The agreement was for a neutral government to hold free and fair elections. There was pressure from the United States of America and Israel not to form a government of national unity. They want a government that accepts the Quartet’s conditions, which are not acceptable to Hamas because of great prejudice against the Palestinian people.
 
“In other words, the Doha agreement had shortcomings in it which means it cannot guarantee the integrity of the election, Abu Mazen, that is Mahmoud Abbas the President of the Palestinian Authority, would have no part to play in such elections.”
 
And secondly, he added, “Because Abu Mazen is in charge of security cooperation with Israel and responsible for the conduct of elections. He is responsible for the arrests of members of Hamas, for the confiscation of money, and for cutting back freedoms, so how can he be objective while ensuring the election results?”
 
al-Zahar refused to discuss the schism between the Hamas leadership in Gaza, dominated by himself and Ismail Haniyeh, and its politburo-in-exile run by Khaled Mashaal over the Doha agreement.
 
“As I have already said I don’t want to talk about this issue, because it has nothing to do with what happens in Gaza," al-Zahar claimed, despite reconciliation directly affecting how Gaza would be run.
 
He also openly admitted Hamas recieived military aid from Iran for its ongoing terror activities.
 
“We receive all forms of support from them and the entire Arab and Muslim world. Anyone who wants to give to us, we take. We are weak and our Israeli enemy is a nuclear power," al-Zahar said.
 
He then proceeded to re-write history – adding 1,300 years to the second exile, ignoring the continuous presence of Jews in Jerusalem during the exile, and ignoring all international agreements, including partition – in order to define all of Israel as "occupied territory."
 
“I would like to ask those people in the West a series of questions, and I’m sure they know the answers but do not dare to answer any of them," al-Zahar said.
 
“The first question is this. What is the origin of our land before 1948, was it a Jewish land? Did it belong to Israel? Or was it the land of the Palestinian Arab, Muslim? That’s a question to which I want them to give me an answer.
 
“The return of the Jews, after 3,000 years to establish a state because their ancestors were living there… does the West accept what is called the right of return? Does it accept the right of return policy?
 
“So let us return to Spain again because we left in 1492 and called for the re-occupation of Britain, India, and Arab and Muslim nations, and called for re-occupation by France of Syria, Lebanon, Algeria..."
 
al-Zahar also attempted to equate the existence of Israel - backed by the United Nations in 1948 - with the Nazi occupation of France, and compared Hamas to the French Resistance.
 
“If you ask the French, what they think of the occupation they will say its illegal. And what about the Nazi’s occupation of France, it is illegal of course and the resistance by Charles de Gaulle’s followers was seen as action by warriors for freedom," al-Zahar said.
 
"But they will not talk about the Israeli occupation of Palestine in the same way, because of their hypocrisy!"

Turkey Accuses Israel of Violating Airspace

Category: Reports
Created on Friday, 18 May 2012 08:23
Turkey accused Israel on of violating the airspace of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), the AFP reported.F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jet
 
An Israeli aircraft allegedly violated the TRNC’s airspace five times on Monday, prompting Turkish fighter jets to chase out the supposed intruder, claimed a statement issued by the army command.
 
The statement did not offer any further details regarding the incident or the type of Israeli plane involved in the alleged incursion.
 
Israel and the internationally recognized Republic of Cyprus have both discovered large amounts of offshore natural gas deposits beneath the Mediterranean Sea, and have tentatively discussed cooperation on delivering gas to European and Asian markets.
 
The drilling for gas and oil in the area off Cyprus, which began last year, angered Turkey, which says it abuses northern Cypriots' rights to the same resources.
 
In April, Turkey initiated its own exploratory drilling in the seabed offshore the TRNC in the north, resulting in condemnations from the government of Cyprus, who called the action illegal.
 
Turkish-Israel relations became increasingly hostile in 2010, when Israeli naval commandos, seeking to protect Israel’s national security, boarded the Mavi Marmara flotilla, filled with pro-Palestinian activists seeking to infiltrate Israel’s borders. The incident resulted in the death of nine Turkish activists, including one US citizen.
 
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops occupied the northern third in response to a Greek-inspired coup in Nicosia aimed at union with Greece.

Israel becomes target in Egypt’s presidential vote

Category: News
Created on Thursday, 17 May 2012 17:28
Israel has become a punch-bag for politicians vying for votes in Egypt’s presidential election, playing on popular antipathy in Egypt towards its neighbor, but the realities of office are likely to ensure a 33-year-old peace treaty is not jeopardized.presidential election campaign posters reuters
 
Officials in Israel have watched Egypt’s political turmoil with increasing wariness after the downfall of Hosni Mubarak, who oversaw a cold yet stable peace.
 
An ex-air force commander in the race to be the new president boasts of bringing down Israeli aircraft in 1973, the last of Egypt’s four wars with Israel.
 
One Islamist often refers to Israel as the “Zionist entity” and the “enemy” and a leftist candidate pledges to support the Palestinian resistance against Israel.
 
None of the candidates want to tear up the treaty signed in 1979 but they repeatedly warn in rallies and debates it should be reviewed. Many of them grumble at provisions in the U.S.-brokered deal they say are biased in Israel’s favor.
 
Yet, beyond the bluster of the campaign trail, the next president’s in-tray will be full of more pressing issues such as reviving an economy on the ropes.
 
He will also preside over a nation where the entrenched establishment of the army and security services -- who kept the peace secure -- remains intact.
 
“Of course Israel is an enemy. It occupied land, it threatened our security. It is an entity that has 200 nuclear warheads,” Islamist Abdul Moniem Abul Fotouh said in a TV debate when asked about Israel, referring to a nuclear arsenal Israel is believed to possess but neither confirms nor denies having.
 
Seeking to trip up his opponent in the novel TV face-off in a nation that has never had an open leadership contest, Abul Fotouh pressed former Arab League chief Amr Moussa on whether he too classed Israel an enemy. Moussa chose the term “adversary.”
 
Moussa, who like Abul Fotouh is a front-runner in the race, was Mubarak’s foreign minister in the 1990s before moving to the League. In both posts he was a vocal critic of Israel.
 
An Israeli newspaper commentator wrote last month that Moussa had intense disdain for Israel.
 
“I intend to review the shape of relations,” Moussa pledged, describing “big disagreements,” but he said the next president would need to lead Egypt “with wisdom and not push it along with slogans towards a confrontation we may not be ready for.”
 
Former Israeli ambassador to Egypt Itzhak Levanon said Israel’s main duty was “to tell the Egyptians loudly that the peace treaty is also in their interests and that they will have to do everything to keep it.”
 
He said comments made on the election trail did not always translate into action in office. “It is like that in all countries,” he said.
 
Like Moussa, other candidates have also reflected a more cautious line when fielding inevitable questions about Israel.
 
Abul Fotouh, who often refers to Israel as the “Zionist entity,” said Egypt should review its treaties to ensure they were in the national interest but was not looking to start any war.
 
Ahmed Shafik, who like Mubarak was a former air force commander before joining the ex-president’s cabinet, told a rally when he was questioned about Israel: “A strong state is not just one with artillery and tanks but has a strong economy, strong science, strong culture.”
 
But tough talk still features on the campaign trail.
 
Leftist candidate Hamdeen Sabahy pledged in a television interview: “I will support whoever resists Israel, not because of nationalism, Arabism or morality, although this is what it is, but because these are the laws of the United Nations.”
 
Safwat Hegazi, an independent preacher who backs the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Mohammed Mursi, has used his campaign rallies to call for the establishment of a single Arab state with Jerusalem as its capital.
 
Mursi criticizes Israel but says he would respect the treaty, which brings $1.3 billion a year of U.S. military aid. An aide to Mursi said his candidate would not meet Israeli officials as president, though his foreign minister would.
 
Western diplomats say popular pressure on a newly-elected president could encourage more outspoken criticism of Israel. However, they say the top army and security officials who have for years kept close ties with their Israeli counterparts to coordinate across the border were likely to keep ties steady.
 
“There are red lines and I think everyone is aware of them. Egypt needs its close relationship with the United States, it needs the financial assistance, the investment and the loans to survive,” said Shadi Hamid, director of research at the Brookings Doha Center.
 
The peace deal has been a cornerstone of Egypt’s foreign policy and, while it may not have the prominence Mubarak gave it, the generals who have overseen Egypt’s transition are unlikely to let that change.
 
The army is expected to remain influential long after the formal handover to a new president by July 1.
 
Nevertheless, Hamid said Egypt’s politicians could “test how far they can go ... before arousing the wrath of the international community.”

US Military Ready for Iran Strike

Category: Reports
Created on Thursday, 17 May 2012 11:15
Dan ShapiroUS Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro said this week his nation's military is ready to execute "the military option" on Iran's nuclear program if need be.
 
Makor Rishon reported that Shapiro, speaking at a meeting of the Israel Bar Association for Tel Aviv and the Central Region, said that not is an American military option available, but that made all necessary preparations to carry it out were complete.
 
"We do not know if sanctions and diplomacy will work," Shapiro said of Western efforts to force Tehran to halt its controversial uranium enrichment program. "So, all options are on the table, including the military option."
 
Shapiro said US President Barak Obama made it clear in previous meetings with Prime Minister Netanyahu - and public pronouncements – that the US will do whatever is necessary to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.
 
"I think this is a statement that America can take to the bank, that Israel can take to the bank, and that Iran should take to the bank," Shapiro said.
 
"We believe that there is a window – not an unlimited time – in which we can still use diplomacy to achieve our goal," he said.
 
Shapiro stressed "At some point we will have to decide if diplomacy has failed. What we want to do is give it any chance, because this is another thing that Israel and the US agree on – that it’s better to solve this diplomatically and through sanctions, than through military force."
 
"But that does not mean that the military option is not available. In fact, this is not only an available option, but as I said, it is ready. All the necessary preparations have been made to read it," he repeated.
 
Shapiro added that Obama considered an Iranian nuclear weapon counter to America's national interests, and was unafraid to use military force to protect those interests.
 
"This is a part of the fight against international terrorism," Shapiro said, adding, "Certainly it was the right decision to eliminate Bin Laden. This is a good indication of president’s ability to make hard choices when he believes the interests of the US are on the line."
 
Shapiro's remarks come ahead of talks between the P5+1 – the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany – and Iran in Baghdad next week.
 
A previous round of talks held earlier this year resulted in no progress other than an agreement for more talks.
 
Ahead of those talks International Atomic Energy Agency officials have pressured Iran for access to sites where they suspect Iran has conducted nuclear research of a military nature.
 
In particular, IAEA officials want Iran to address concerns expressed in an extensive IAEA report in November that at least until 2003, and possibly since, that Tehran has engaged in nuclear activities of a decidedly military nature.
 
Two previous trips to Tehran in January and February by the IAEA resulted in Iran denying international inspectors access to suspected nuclear sites.
 
Iran, as a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, is obligated to allow the UN watchdog access to its site for inspections to ensure it is complying with the treaty - but has consistently refused to honor the treaty.
 
IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said recently that access to Parchin was a "priority" and said in March that "activities" spotted by satellite there "makes us believe that going there sooner is better than later."
 
In March, Amano charged Iran with a systemic attempt to cover up nuclear activity of a military nature saying, "Iran is not telling us everything."
 
Western nations have accused Iran of removing evidence from Parchin and other sites. Iran says any allegations of "sanitization" of the site were "a childish (and) ridiculous story made out of nothing."
 
Observers note that Shapiro's assertion that Jerusalem and Washington are in lock-step on how to deal with Iran's nuclear program is out of harmony with statements by senior Israeli officials.
 
While Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has publicly said Western sanctions should be given more time, he has told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee he does not believe they are working. He also said that sanctions were not working openly during a trip to Cyprus earlier this year.
 
Israeli officials – including Defense Minister Ehud Barak – have charged that further talks are a waste of time saying Iran is using them stall for time in its bid for nuclear weapons.
 
Analysts believe the likelihood of an Israeli strike on Iran's nuclear facilities in the coming months will dramatically increase should the Baghdad talks fail.

Iran Hangs Alleged Israeli 'Mossad Agent'

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 15 May 2012 22:00
 Alleged Israeli SpyIran has hanged a man the regime alleges was an agent for the Israeli Mossad and convicted of killing one of its nuclear scientists in 2010, Iranian state media reported on Tuesday.
 
Twenty-four year old Majid Jamali Fashi was hanged at Tehran's Evin Prison after being sentenced to death in August last year for the murder of Massoud Ali-Mohammadi, Iran's state news agency quoted the central prosecutor's office as saying.
 
It said he had confessed to the crime.
 
Ali-Mohammadi was killed in January 2010 when a remote-controlled bomb, attached to a motorcycle, exploded outside of his home in Tehran, Reuters reported.
 
Tuesday's report alleged that Fashi had travelled abroad on several occasions to receive training from Mossad agents before returning to Iran to plot the assassination.
 
Western analysts, however, said the 50-year-old Tehran University professor, had no publicly disclosed links to Iran’s nuclear program.
 
A spokesman for Iran's Atomic Energy Organization said at the time he was not involved in its activities.
 
At least five Iranian nuclear scientists, including a manager at the Natanz enrichment facility, have been killed in recent years. Tehran has accused Israel’s Mossad, the CIA and Britain’s MI-6 of being behind the assassinations. The U.S. and Britain have denied the allegations but Israel has remained silent on the issue.
 
Last month, Iranian intelligence officials said they had arrested 15 people they called a "major terror and sabotage network with links to the Zionist regime". The group had plotted to assassinate an Iranian scientist in February, the authorities said.
 
Despite the almost daily warning’s emanating from Iran of its intentions to obliterate the State of Israel, the regime continues to deny Western accusations that it is seeking to obtain nuclear weapons.

Turkey Suspects Bird of Being Spy for Israel

Category: Reports
Created on Tuesday, 15 May 2012 21:07
dead birdTurkish authorities believe they have found a bird used by Israel for espionage purposes, the country’s media reported.
 
According to reports, a Turkish farmer found the already dead bird, commonly known as the European Bee-Eater, with markings indicating it came from Israel.
 
The bird’s left nostril was reportedly three times the size of its right nostril, leading Turkish officials to believe the Israel had implanted the animal with a surveillance device in its beak.
 
Israeli officials received notification of the allegations after the reports of the "spy bird" quickly spread within Turkey’s ornithological community, creating commotion in the country’s media.
 
Zoological conspiracy theories, accusing Israel of embedding animals with surveillance devices in order to gather intelligence information and attack against civilian populations, have long been propagated by the Arab media as a way of inciting against the Jewish state and alleging of “Zionist plots.”
 
In 2008, Mahmoud Abbas's official news agency, Wafa, reported that Israel had released poison-resistant rats to drive Arab residents of Jerusalem out of their homes.
 
The report claimed that, "Rats have become an Israeli weapon to displace and expel Arab residents of the occupied Old City of Jerusalem. Settlers flood the Old City of Jerusalem with rats."
 
In October of 2008, Iranian officials captured two 'spy pigeons' near the uranium enrichment facility in Natanz, alleging that the birds were being used to spy on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear advancements. In 2007, the regime detained over a dozen squirrels believed to be spies of Western powers seeking to undermine the Iranian regime.
 
In June of 2010, Egyptian officials blamed a wave of shark attacks on Israel’s foreign ministry intelligence, asserting,” We must not discount the possibility that Mossad threw the shark into the sea, in order to attack tourists who are having fun in Sharm al-Sheikh.”
 
Furthermore, in January of 2011, Saudi Arabian security forces detained a vulture carrying a global positioning satellite (GPS) transmitter and a ring etched with the words "Tel Aviv University." Officials exclaimed that the creature was part of a "Zionist espionage plot."

Egypt Cracking Down on Hamas' Black Market Fuel

Category: Reports
Created on Tuesday, 15 May 2012 19:06
Black Market Fuel FallujahEgyptian security forces seized four vehicles transporting unlicensed fuel in the northern Sinai over the weekend.
 
Security officials said the vehicles were carrying 1,640 liters of fuel in 82 tanks for sale on the black market. A driver was detained for investigation, they added.
 
Last week, security forces confiscated a truck in the Sinai carrying 10 thousand liters of fuel headed to tunnels under the border with Gaza Strip.
 
Egypt moved in February to shut down fuel deliveries to Gaza via the tunnel smuggling network developed by Hamas - sparking a fuel shortage that caused widespread blackouts.
 
Hamas had long been using the tunnels - used to bring arms and other goods into Gaza - as a means of raising customs revenues on all goods entering the strip.
 
While fuel is allowed into Gaza via Israel's Kerem Shalom crossing, Hamas eschewed such transfers as "prohibitively expensive" despite Israel selling fuel to the enclave at at market rates.
 
Observers note that tax-revenues from goods that pass through the Kerem Shalom crossing are paid to the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah rather than Hamas.
 
A recent deal between Cairo and Ramallah to build a fuel pipeline into Gaza and upgrade the coastal enclave’s sole power plant has also infuriated Hamas.
 
Under the agreement, tariffs generated by the deal will be paid to the Fatah-run PA in Ramallah rather than the Hamas administration in Gaza.
 
In mid-February, when the Gaza power plant went dark for several weeks, UN officials pointed to Egypt as the reason.
 
According to the UN agency for humanitarian affairs (OCHA), the amount of fuel entering Gaza through the tunnels from Egypt has dropped by half over the last fortnight.
 
"Only half of the amount of fuel that entered in the previous weeks has been coming into Gaza for the past two weeks," OCHA said in its weekly report.
 
"Unconfirmed reports indicate that the reason for this sharp decline is an increase in fuel prices triggered by movement restrictions imposed by the Egyptian police on fuel cargoes travelling to Rafah," OCHA officials added.
 

While Hamas has tried to blame Israel for the crisis, local residents have placed the blame squarely on the terror group’s shoulders. Hamas issued arrest warrants for several local activists who openly blamed them for the crisis.
 
Hamas seized Gaza from the Palestinian Authority in a bloody 2007 putsch that left them responsible for governance – and led to a series of cash-flow crises for the terror group.
 
Several senior Hamas leaders have expressed distress over the responsibilities of rule, saying “politics are bad for the revolution” and suggesting the terror group get out of governing altogether.

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