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ISRAEL THE BEAUTIFUL: A TALLIT
Posted by Yehoshua Halevi, August 31, 2010.

A tallit rests on a shelf in a yeshiva coatroom
 

This is one of Yehoshua Halevi's Golden Light Images.

HOW I GOT THE SHOT:

I've taken thousands of prayer-related photographs. Most of these images were taken during a prayer service, with a focus on the person praying and the various ritual objects as they are being used. These pictures make us think more about the person engaged in prayer than any other aspect of the photo. By contrast, this image features a familiar subject, a tallit or prayer shawl, found exactly as seen here on a shelf in a coat room of the enormous Slonim Yeshiva in Jerusalem.

This still-life study of a tallit begs the questions, why is it here and to whom does it belong? As long as we have a previous relationship to this or a similar object, we can begin the journey of imagination that accompanies the visual experience. Both motivated my decision to stop and take the picture in the first place.

I used my zoom lens to capture the tallit up close using only the beautiful light pouring over the tzitzit from a nearby window. The composition is strengthened by the two single strings which fall through the center of the entwined fringes. Finally, because I was shooting at close range, depth of field was limited and I had to make a careful choice about where to focus. I chose the point where the tzitzit and loose strings meet, which felt like the most obvious visual center point of the photograph.

TECHNICAL DATA: Nikon D-300, 18-200 zoom at 150mm, f5.6 at 1/50 sec., ISO 1000.

Contact Yehoshua Halevi by email at smile@goldenlightimages.com and visit his website:
http://www.goldenlightimages.com. Reproductions of his work as cards, calenders and posters may be purchased at
http://www.cafepress.com/halevi18. He is available for public relations and editorial photography, celebrations and simchas.

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ANTI-ZIONISM'S STRAW MAN
Posted by Seth J. Frantzman, August 31, 2010.
 

The Western champions of a return of the Jews to Israel are said to have ignored the local inhabitants.

The bookstores are adorned with new titles seeking to address the "origins" of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Jerusalem 1913: The Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict by Amy Marcus is one and Ronald Florence's Lawrence and Aaronsohn: The Seeds of the Arab-Israeli Conflict is another. The newest edition is The Balfour Declaration: The Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict by Jonathan Schneer.

In a review of it, the prolific Israeli author/journalist Tom Segev writes "the Arabs were as invisible to the early Zionists as Africans had been to Boers in South Africa, or Indians to the French and English colonists in North America."

The idea that Zionists viewed the Land of Israel as a "land without a people" has been described as one of Zionism's "foundation myths." The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs and numerous others frequently refer to this notion to falsify and simplify the origins of Zionism.

Edward Said infamously shortened the phrase to "a land without people" to imply that Zionists actually believed there were no people in Ottoman Palestine.

Rashid Khalidi, who inherited Said's imprimatur as the American-Palestinian scholar who explains the conflict to the West, wrote: "In the early days of the Zionist movement, many of its European supporters — and others — believed that Palestine was empty and sparsely cultivated."

However it has now been realized that the Zionists themselves almost never used the term "land without a people."

Ze'ev Sternhell, a critic of Israel, wrote "contrary to the claim that is often made, Zionism was not blind to the presence of Arabs in Palestine."

Diana Muir, in an expert essay in Middle East Quarterly, fully examined "one of the most oft-cited phrases in the literature of Zionism — and perhaps also the most problematic. Anti-Zionists cite the phrase as a perfect encapsulation of the fundamental injustice of Zionism."

She showed that it was first coined by Church of Scotland clergyman Alexander Kieth. The notion that the phrase was often used by Christian "restorationists" and rarely if ever by Jews has now morphed into a new myth.

The best evidence for the new thinking is a recent column by James Carroll in the Boston Globe and The New York Times. He writes that "the Holy Land was to be the place of a dream rescue from the horror of the trenches. That the dream was unreal, of course, is why it did not include the Arabs who already lived in Palestine. It was a 19th century British Christian restorationist who coined the mistaken and still fateful phrase 'a land without a people for a people without a land.' THAT ZIONISM is now turned into a British-American-Christian plot is no surprise. It is part of the larger process by which everything Israeli and Jewish is turned into something Western, at a time when everything Western and Christian is considered particularly heinous. The Western champions of a return of the Jews to Israel are said to have ignored the local inhabitants."

But there seems little evidence for this.

Laurence Oliphant, a Christian Zionist and member of Parliament was also a resident of Haifa in the 1880s and a keen observer of the local geography, which included the few Arabs then living in Haifa and the surrounding coastal areas. It is true he had little concern for the local population, proposing at one point a canal to link Aqaba to Haifa via the Dead Sea that would, according to his calculations, submerge Tiberias, Jericho, Beit She'an and "a few small villages." He wrote in Haifa or Life in Modern Palestine that "Tiberias contains a population of over three thousand, chiefly Jews, and a Latin and Greek monastery."

He was not ignorant of the local Arabs, but noted "the villages here are small, few and far between, and there is room for a large population; but the most tempting land of all is the tract between Umm el-Fahm and the sea." He was critical of the Arab gentry "who are the bloodsuckers of the fellahin."

William E. Blackstone, America's foremost Christian Zionist at the turn of the century, came as a pilgrim to Palestine in 1888. He did not keep a diary but later wrote: "It is a territory of at least 10,000 square miles, with only 600,000 population. There is room there for two or three million people."

The earl of Shaftesbury, a British Christian Zionist of the 19th century, was involved with numerous like-minded others in creating the Palestine Exploration Fund in 1865. This organization was singlehandedly responsible for producing the first truly accurate maps of the country and extensive multivolume memoirs which recorded hundreds of villages in Palestine's rural hinterland. Far from creating the image of a country without people, it provides the most important source from the 19th century on rural Arab life. Their work, however, also shows the degree to which some of the country was sparsely populated, barren and desolate.

There is an attempt today to create a straw man of Zionism where Zionists and their Christian European backers are said to have created a mythological Palestine free of people to justify imperialism and expulsion of the local inhabitants. That claim is then easily challenged by the anti-Zionist saying "there were Arabs and they were ignored."

When it was shown that Zionists themselves didn't think this way the claim was more easily placed on the shoulders of "nefarious Christian Zionists and imperial powers."

In fact, all the parties concerned were aware of the Arabs; they simply felt there was room for other cultural groups. Oddly, the same people in the West who have such a hatred for Zionism and its Jewish immigrants are all champions of immigration and multiculturalism in their home countries. By stealing Zion from the Zionists and claiming only a Christian pedigree for it, they not only rely on a false argument but deprive Zionism of its genuine character expressed by Theodor Herzl's injunction: "the Promised Land, where it is right for us to have hooked noses, black or red beards and bandy legs without being despised." Seth J. Frantzman is a PhD researcher at Hebrew University and a fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies.

The writer is a PhD researcher at Hebrew University and a fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies. He lives in Jerusalem. Contact him at sfrantzman@hotmail.com and visit his website:
http://journalterraincognita.blogspot.com

This article appeared today in Jerusalem Post
www.jpost.com/Opinion/Columnists/Article.aspx?id=186634

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FROM ISRAEL: THE BLOOD ON THEIR HANDS
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 31, 2010.
 

I was not going to post tonight. I wanted to take a rest, because the news causes one to be soul-weary. But there is no rest, and I must put this out now, with tears in my eyes and a burning fury in my heart. I hope and pray that none of you will be able to read this without feeling the same — both pain and rage are called for now.

The news is that outside of Hebron, four innocent Jews have been murdered by Arabs. The murdered couple had ten children. One woman was pregnant. Rather than write more, I prefer to simply share a major portion of what David Wilder, spokesman for Hebron, has already written:

~~~~~~~~~~

This morning, speaking with a friend, talking about the renewed "piece talks", I told him that more than likely today or tomorrow terrorists would strike. It was just a question of where — around here, the Shomron, or Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. Tonight we received our answer.

Leaving Ma'arat HaMachpela after evening prayers, the beeper beeped. A car had been shot at. A quick phone call, confirming that Jews had been hit, four critically, and I sped off. I had been at the scene of the shooting only a few hours ago, examining how Arabs were stealing water from Jews in the area.

By the time I arrived, the description had changed. No longer four critically wounded. Four dead. Four killed, shot by terrorists, on their way home. The terrorists' lives have been made much easier in the past year or so, with various roadblocks being removed in Judea and Samaria. Now it's fairly simple to access roads used by Jewish civilians, shoot, and then escape.

The scene was reminiscent of others I've witnessed in the past. Ambulances, jeeps, police, medics, soldiers, officers, red lights flashing....and bodies.

It's been a long time since I've seen four bodies on the street, murdered by Arabs only because they are Jews, living in Israel.

I sit here, half numb, almost not believing, but knowing that, yes, it's real. And what to do?

The first thing that must be done: Netanyahu has to return immediately, cancelling tomorrow's "festive ceremony" renewing the so-called negotiations with Obama and Abu Mazen. Israel must make it as clear as possible: we refuse to accept, under any circumstances, and at any price, murder of innocent people on our roads, in our homes, anywhere. No excuses, no looking the other way, no "ifs ands or buts." More than the Arabs, Obama must understand in no uncertain terms that our people are not cattle-feed.

Two: Netanyahu must unfreeze the freeze now. Not on September 26, not leaving everyone wondering "what's he going to do?" Tomorrow, as these four pure souls are being buried, building must again begin throughout Judea and Samaria. Here again, the Arabs and the Americans must understand that we will not turn the other cheek; there is a price for murdering Jews in Israel.

Three: Here in Israel we must comprehend that our own people are continuing to incite; making Jewish blood cheap. Two examples: The continued "cherem" — boycott of Israeli actors and performing artists, refusing to perform in Ariel in the Shomron, is incitement. Our Arab neighbors, seeing and hearing Israelis spout revulsion against their supposed brethren is, in the Arab's eyes, a green light, opening the door to murderous attacks as we witnessed tonight.

So too with such organizations as Breaking the Silence and others, who continue to spew hate against Jews living in Hebron and the Hebron area, while identifying effusively with our Arab neighbors. This is also incitement; there is no other word for it. Actually there is: treason. A person or individual abetting the enemy is treason. These people walk the streets of Hebron freely, regurgitating lies about Hebron's Jewish citizens, while showering praises on the "poor palestinians" whose suffer at the hands of the evil Jews. These "poor people" are planning on taking our land, destroying our country, and continuing to kill Jews. Such "tours" must be stopped.

Four: Israel has been "returning" security control to armed, uniformed Arabs in cities throughout Judea and Samaria. This too, must be ended. It won't be any surprise if we eventually discover that the terrorists who murdered four Jews tonight are actually "palestinian police," trained and armed by General Keith Dayton of the US army, and set free to roam the streets with the permission of the state of Israel.

According to the latest reports, a number of terrorists participated in the attack. After the car was shot at and stopped, its passengers were shot dozens of times, ensuring their deaths. It's been reported that one of the women was pregnant. The couple killed leaves some ten children orphans. You know what it's like to inform ten kids that their parents aren't coming home anymore, that they were killed by terrorists an hour ago?

This is pure, unadulterated barbarity, brutality characteristic of our "piece partners." This may very well only be the beginning.
http://www.hebron.com/english/article.php?id=678

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website:
www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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ANOTHER REASON TO REJECT THE TWO-STATE SOLUTION
Posted by Ted Belman, August 31, 2010.
 

In any imagined deal, except for Israel possibly accepting a token amount of "refugees", everyone assumes they will resettle in the new Palestine. This may seem doable but in reality it would prevent a peaceful two-state solution from emerging.

Israel now has about 6.0 million Jews including those living east of the greenline and 1.5 million Arabs. Gaza and the West Bank have about have about 1.4 and 1.6 million Arabs respectively. In total there are 4.2 million Arabs in the combined territory. The total number of Arab refugees including their descendants exceed 4.2 million located as follows; 400,000 Lebanon, 400,000 in Syria, 2 million in Jordan some of whom have been given citizenship and the rest in Gaza and elsewhere.

Now if 2 million "refugees" return to the New Palestine, there will be over 6.5 million Arabs compared to 6.0 million Jews in the combined territories. This influx of Arabs will cause civil unrest in the New Palestine due to income and educational disparity and will severely test availability of resources particularly, water. These new residents will then attempt to infiltrate into Israel just as Africans are attempting to do so and just as Mexicans are infiltrating the USA.

Israel would have to double its manpower defending the fence with orders to shoot any infiltrators. There is no way that Israel would put itself into such a position.

To my mind, there would be great pressure on Israel, naturally or by Arab design. The Palestinians would then start demanding a one-state solution and will make Israel's life hell once again.

Ted Belman is a Canadian lawyer and editor of the IsraPundit.com website, an activist pro-Israel website. He lives in Jerusalem. Contact him at tedbel@rogers.com

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TUVIA GROSSMAN AND MEDIA BIAS
Posted by Robin Ticker, August 31, 2010.
 

The lies against our people by our enemies in the media is ongoing in what we can call mediawarfare. Is our side fighting the media war effectively? Did you all have front page coverage of the rally against the mosque at all? If you did, did you bend over backwards to present a "balanced picture" that there were protests for the mosque and protests against the mosque? While we bend over backwards to present a "balanced" picture giving the enemy the right of self expression, they are sending out lies and distortions which are believed by the masses and this apparently is not a new phenomenon. Wake UP and recognize that you are in the War and fighting a very vicious enemy that does not play by the rules of fair and honest reporting. Yasher Koach to Honest Reporting and let me suggest that they be a serious news source for you.

Below: Ten years later. Tuvia Grossman meets the soldier that saved his life!
http://calevbenyefuneh.blogspot.com/2010/08/ exclusive-video-dramatic-reunion-ten.html

 


 

On September 30, 2000, The New York Times, Associated Press and other major media outlets published a photo of a young man — bloodied and battered — crouching beneath a club-wielding Israeli policeman. The caption identified him as a Palestinian victim of Israeli brutality — with the clear implication that the Israeli soldier was the one who beat him.

That young man was, in fact, Tuvia Grossman, a Jewish student from Chicago, who was beaten within inches of his life before being rescued by the Israeli border policeman in the photo.

 

Tuvia Grossman wrote:

"Soon after the story broke, I received numerous calls from major network news shows in the US inviting to fly me to their studios for interviews. I turned all of them down. What I did agree to attend were pro-Israel rallies, events in whose causes I strongly believed in, where I felt my presence could inspire others to support Israel.

"In addition, being in the limelight would have forced me to constantly recall and relive the trauma. Even ten years later, recalling the story, discussing it, or even seeing objects which may remind me of it, can be painful. Avoiding recollections of the trauma is one of my methods of coping with it"..

TO VIEW THIS HONESTREPORTINGVIDEO, click here.

(This video is also available here.)
 

Now, ten years later, we caught up with Tuvia in an exclusive interview.

Q: How have things changed for you since your picture appeared in the NY Times?

Tuvia Grossman: Ten years ago, I was a single American 20-year old, in Israel temporarily as a student. Today, I am nearly 30, married, have a beautiful nearly three-year-old daughter, a practicing attorney at a corporate law firm in Tel Aviv and a proud citizen of Israel.

While the memories of 10 years ago haven't faded, it's often difficult to picture myself in the state I was in. I remember feeling mixed emotions of anger, fear and hopelessness. The misrepresentation of my story in the global news exacerbated my feelings.

However, I am proud to say I have overcome many of those feelings, and, in a way, won the battle the terrorists started. By settling in Israel, raising a family, advancing my career and becoming the person they tried to destroy, I beat the terrorists simply by being alive.

Q : What was your reaction when you heard about the NY Times caption?

TG: The truth is I was not very surprised at all. This was not my first encounter with media bias. I had always been an avid reader, even before my attack, and had come across many instances of blatant bias against Israel.

When hearing about the picture, my initial thoughts went to the soldier. It's much worse to be accused of beating the person you actually helped protect, than to be accused of being a Palestinian when you are in fact a Jew.

Q: Did you try to find the soldier in the picture?

TG: No. First, there were five or six soldiers stationed at the gas station I ran to as I was being pursued by the Arabs. One particular soldier happened to be standing behind me when the picture was taken; however, I owe my gratitude to all the soldiers equally, to the one in the picture, as well as to the less famous ones not photographed — such as the soldier who ripped off his uniform and tied it around my head to stop the bleeding.

I have also been reluctant to find the soldier from the picture precisely because of the misrepresentation. What do you say to someone who helped save your life, but was portrayed across the globe as a vicious animal?

Q : Your ordeal has inspired other groups to fight media bias against Israel. Has coverage of Israel improved in the past ten years?

TG: Media bias against Israel is as strong as ever.

However, public awareness to such bias has increased exponentially, which is the first and most crucial step to stop the actual bias. Jewish Organizations may not be able to force media outlets across the globe to reflect the unbiased truth, but they have been very successful in raising awareness.

Q: Your image is closely associated with second intifada, but you stayed out of the public eye. Why the low profile?

TG: This has to do partly with my personality and partly with my ongoing efforts to recover. I have always been a "low-profile" person, and usually try to avoid the limelight.

Soon after the story broke, I received numerous calls from major network news shows in the US inviting to fly me to their studios for interviews. I turned all of them down. What I did agree to attend were pro-Israel rallies, events in whose causes I strongly believed in, where I felt my presence could inspire others to support Israel.

In addition, being in the limelight would have forced me to constantly recall and relive the trauma. Even ten years later, recalling the story, discussing it, or even seeing objects which may remind me of it, can be painful. Avoiding recollections of the trauma is one of my methods of coping with it.

Now and then, when I truly believe in a cause I'm willing to discuss what happened, because I feel my experiences can have a positive impact on others.

Q: Have you discussed the attack with your daughter, or plan to do so when she's older?

TG: My daughter is not yet three; she's too young to understand the attack and how it has influenced me, so I have told her nothing of it. I do think it is important for her to hear about it from me rather than from other sources, like the Internet. When the time is right, I'll discuss it with her in great detail.

Every year I make a seudat hoda'yah, or thanksgiving meal, right before Rosh Hashana to thank G-d for allowing me to survive the incident. This year, at the seudah, I may explain to her that a long time before she was born, Abba was hurt badly and I make a special meal to thank G-d that all is better now. I won't elaborate more than that to her at this stage.

Most obvious is the need to fight the media bias against Israel. As I mentioned, the best way is by informing the public, on a mass-scale, of the blatant misrepresentations, which in turn will cause the public to distrust the biased media until they start reporting truthfully.

After my attack, when I heard of the misrepresentation in the NY Times, what bothered me more than the false reporting was that the truth had become less of a focal point. The public was caught up in what was not true; the truth was no longer important.

Contact Robin Ticker at faigerayzel@gmail.com

Robin Ticker writes: "This email is L'Ilui Nishmat Yisrael ben David Aryeh ob"m (Izzy Kaplan) a great activist and lover of Eretz Yisroel, Am Yisroel and the Torah. Yehi Zichrono Baruch."

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MILITARY OPTION IS BACK; PEACE PROCESS IS A MOTION SICKNESS; LIBERALISM AND OUR FREEDOM
Posted by Steven Shamrak, August 31, 2010.
 

Military Option is Back.
source: DEBKAfile

Obama has informed P5+1 group plus Saudis and Israelis that he has abandoned his former willingness to accept a limited Iranian nuclear arsenal and is now ready to fight to stop Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon.

To meet increasingly defiant Iranian threats to US regional military forces, Washington has detached the USS Truman carrier from support duty for Afghanistan in the Arabian Sea and reassigned it to Dubai opposite the Gulf of Oman and the Straits of Hormuz with thousands of marines aboard.

1) Reza Baruni, the father of Iran's military UAV program, died in a mighty explosion that destroyed his closely secured villa.

2) Three unidentified drones slammed into its dome killing five people.

3) An Iranian F4 Phantom fighter jet was claimed by Tehran to have crashed 6 kilometers north of the Bushehr nuclear reactor in southern Iran. Military sources reported that it was shot down by Russian-made TOR-M1 air-missile defense batteries guarding the reactor.

4) Iran began loading fuel into its first nuclear power plant, a potent symbol of its growing regional sway and its rejection of international sanctions designed to prevent it building a nuclear bomb.

Preparation for a War. Iranian Revolutionary Guards chief Gen. Mohamed Ali Jafari, who rarely leaves his country, paid a secret visit to Damascus a few hours before Tehran launched the Bushehr nuclear reactor Saturday, Aug. 21. With him were top Al Qods Brigades commanders in Lebanon, Iraq and the Palestinian territories. They conferred with Bashar Assad on roles for Syria and Hizballah in an Iranian reprisal for a US or Israel attack — or a "pre-emptive strike" against Israel.

No International Outcry! The Turkish Air Force attacked Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) hideouts in northern Iraq late last week. The Turkish warplanes pounded Mount Qandil as well as the Hakurk area.

Food for Thought. Steven Shamrak

Traditional enemies of Jewish people and self-hating enemies within, in order to satisfy their own psychological disorders, have been endlessly undermining the Jewish character of Israel to distroy the only Jewish state. This is another vital front for Israel's survival, maybe even more important than fighting Arabs!

Peace Process is a Motion Sickness. Recent announcement of a new round of Middle East peace talks has stirred scepticism over whether the negotiations will amount to any meaningful progress. Both sides are simply going through the motions in a bid to placate Washington. Neither side believes that negotiations will produce any solution, nor are they prepared to make major concessions.

Clear Intention. Iran announces a new unmanned jet bomber that Ahmadinejad dubs an "ambassador of death" to Israel and other enemie. The statement comes one day after Iran began operating its first nuclear power plant and two days after it test-fired a new surface-to-surface guided missile. (Dealivery system of A-bomb is ready. Must Israel wait?)

Why to Bother Helping Idiots. India and Israel are the only two countries whose aid workers will not be granted special visas by Pakistan to join relief efforts for the millions of people affected by country's worst floods.

No Jews in Yesha — No Arabs in Israel! Israel's Infrastructure Minister Uzi Landau slammed calls for extending sanctions on Jewish building in Judea and Samaria. Dr. Landau said that if the PA is allowed to transfer Jews who make up 10% of the population of Judea and Samaria then Israel should be allowed to transfer the Arabs who make up 20% of the population of Israel. (Let's not forget that "Yesha", Judea and Samaria, is Jewish land!)

Must Israel Tolerate Hateful Neighbours? Arab students studying at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem are extracting mezuzot from homes in neighbourhoods in which they reside. (This hideous act was performed by educated Arabs, not 'poor' peasants. Arabs will never change their intolerable behaviour!)

Fake Talk is on the Way? Agreement to resume direct peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians is an achievement for American arm-twisting. Israel's prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, had insisted he would only return to negotiations without preconditions. Mahmoud Abbas, but the Palestinian president has never stopped setting them. The Quartet announcement shows no signs of a shift by either party — apart from agreement to talk. (How long will this round of pritence last?)

Result of Unwilliness to Reinforce a Law. The number of illegal migrants' children living in Israel in violation of immigration laws is in the tens of thousands, not hundreds as is commonly perceived, Interior Minister Eli Yishai told Israel Radio. It exceeds 20,000! Yishai used these numbers as a justification for expaltion of all illegal migrant children and their families from Israel, instead of granting legal status to those who meet certain criteria, emphasizing the threat to the Jewish character of the state.

Hypocrisy in Action:

"Presbyterian leaders: US should end Israel aid unless nation backs off Palestinian settlements" — Another 'Jew-friendly' Christian group joined the Methodist Church of Britain in anti-Israel frinzy. They are preoccupied with Israel but not concerned with the treatment of Christians in Muslim countries, including in Hamas and Fatah controlled territories!

Liberalism and Our Freedom.
by Steven Shamrak.

It is important to understand the roll of Liberalism in our society. For the last two hundred years western democracies have been shaped by the idealistic views of liberal individuals and organizations. We are grateful to them for creating modern democracy. Human Rights, Social Justice, Animal Rights are important issues of Western democracies.

There is a fine line between liberalism and leftist political ideology, focused on undermining western society. They do not want to accept that Socialist ideology has failed. They deny the horrors it brought to the peoples of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries, including North Korea. Nevertheless, in spite of a deep irreconcilable ideological gap, they are eagerly joining forces with fascist and Arab terrorists against the only democracy in the Middle East — Israel.

There are people in the West who still doubt the intentions of Arab-Muslim expansionism or even deny its existence (some of them, in their hateful frenzy, are calling people like me ultra-right extremist, fascist or even racist). This type of denial has happened before. It did not save liberals after the communists came to power in Russia. Many moderate citizens perished in concentration camps after fascists came to power too. Re-education camps are still an integral part of China. It is time to realise the danger we are facing and take a stand. "Liberalism" will not survive when the "Dark cloud" of Muslim extremism will cover Western Society, like it vanished when Communists took over in the Russia.

Please, check the recent news about Al Qaeda cells arrested in Europe: "Twenty-one Al Qaeda operatives detained in Europe with explosives and chemicals. Spanish anti-terror agents rounded up 16 militants, most Algerian, in Catalonia. Italian police detained 5 Moroccan men near Venice with explosives and maps of central London, plans to hit the NATO base in Verona and Padua Cathedral." Almost, 2,000 British citizens have been trained by Al Qaeda (year 2003 data). Do you know why?

Use the Internet and find out how Christian and other minorities are treated in most Muslim countries and why. Unfortunately, this information for political reasons is not widely publicized. Just imagine what the world would be like if Arab-Muslim extremists were free to do as they pleased! And, how would you feel if they were at your door?

We all like to be nice and care free. It is time to start to care! It is time to protect what we value most — Our freedom.

Steven Shamrak was involved in the Moscow Zionist movement. He worked as a construction engineer at the Moscow Olympic Games project and as a computer consultant in Australia. He has been publishing an Internet editorial letter about the Arab-Israel conflict since August 2001 and has a website www.shamrak.com. He can be reached by email at StevenShamrak@gmail.com

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HAREDI BATTALION COMES OF AGE ON ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY
Posted by Robin Ticker, August 31, 2010.

Netzah Yehuda now has 700 soldiers, including a counter-terror squad.

This was written by Yaakov Katz and it appeared in the Jerusalem Post
http://www.jpost.com/LandedPages/ PrintArticle.aspx?id=185395

 

In March, Lt.-Col. Dror Spiegel finally felt like his battalion had turned into a real fighting machine.

As commander of the IDF's Netzah Yehuda Battalion — formerly known as Nahal Haredi — Spiegel was with his soldiers in the West Bank village of Arane providing support for the Israel Police's elite Yamam counter-terror unit which was trying to apprehend two Palestinian terror suspects.

As the force entered the village it became clear that the wanted men were not in the same home but the Yamam did not have enough manpower to split up its force.

Spiegel did not waste any time and immediately sent a company to one of the homes.

Within minutes his soldiers had succeeded in apprehending the suspect.

"The ability to quickly switch modes and dispatch a force that is flexible and prepared for such a mission means that we are ready for anything that comes our way," Spiegel told The Jerusalem Post this week during a tour of northern Samaria.

The interview with Spiegel marked two occasions — the end of his tenure as battalion commander as well as the 10th anniversary of one of the army's most interesting battalions.

Netzah Yehuda is part of the Kfir Brigade, responsible for most operations these days in the West Bank. Established with a mere 30 soldiers, Netzah Yehuda is today the largest battalion in the IDF, with close to 700 soldiers, including four companies and an elite counter-terror squad.

Most of the battalion's soldiers are Israelis from a haredi or national-religious background.

After they complete two years of service, Netzah Yehuda offers them resources to help them complete matriculation and pre-college studies.

Spiegel took up his post about two years ago when the battalion was still based in the Jordan Valley, where it had been since its establishment.

Together with the previous Kfir brigade commander, Spiegel pushed for the battalion to be relocated. Today the soldiers are operating in one of the most intensely active areas of the West Bank — northern Samaria.

"It wasn't good for us to be in the same place for so long," Spiegel said. "Deploying near Jenin has worked wonders for the unit."

Netzah Yehuda is unique for a number of reasons. It is the only unit in the IDF whose members have to wear a kippa and keep Shabbat. It is also women-free and soldiers eat only glatt kosher food.

Many of the soldiers have families who frown upon their service in the Zionist army. As a result, among the 86 lone soldiers in the unit are 30 who have parents who live in Israel but receive the status, which includes housing, because their families have cut all ties.

"There are many different socio-economic problems," Spiegel said. "Some of the soldiers who go home come back and tell stories of how they were humiliated."

When it was established, the idea was to try and attract haredi youth to the IDF by providing them with a unit in which they could maintain their lifestyle and still defend the country. While it had a slow beginning, today the IDF has to limit the number of soldiers accepted into the unit to 150 each draft, otherwise it would grow out of control.

What will happen over the next 10 years? Spiegel doesn't want to make predictions but says he is sure the battalion will continue to grow.

The IDF is already weighing the establishment of a second battalion and some of the unit's proponents have claimed that in a number of years there will be a haredi brigade.

Contact Robin Ticker at faigerayzel@gmail.com

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RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AND A MOSQUE
Posted by Bill Warner, August 31, 2010.
 

One of the most common arguments of the supporters of the Ground Zero mosque includes religious freedom as guaranteed by the First Amendment. Religion is seen as the framework to support building a mosque and community center near the site of the former World Trade Towers. Is this really about religion? Step back and look at the controversy. Do you feel like you are taking part in a religious exercise or a political fracas?

There is a vast confusion about what a religion is and is not. Currently the operative rule is that anything associated with Islam is a religious affair where all of the freedom of religion is applied to the action or event. Islam's actions are religious and if you oppose it, you are an un-American bigot.

It is time to stop and take a look at what we mean by a religion. There are about as many Buddhists in America today as there are Muslims. When was the last time you remember a Buddhist demand of any kind? Do Buddhists set up councils to shape the textbooks and demand Buddhist finance? Does the government make a big announcement when Buddhists are appointed to high posts? Are there even any Buddhists in any White House appointments? Do Buddhists complain? Never, for these are political actions, and Buddhism has almost no political outreach. Buddhism in America is purely religious, not political at all.

Yet the media and the Internet are consumed by talk and argument about Islam. The discussion is never about how many rounds of prayer to do or whether a certain food is halal (religiously proper). No, the focus is always on something that non-Muslims are to do to accommodate an Islamic religious practice.

There is a practical working definition of religion as compared to politics. Religious practices are done by those who follow that religion and are motivated for achieving paradise and avoiding hell. Outsiders are not involved in those religious acts. If it is about going to heaven and avoiding hell, then it is religious. However, if the religion makes a demand on those outside of its own group, then that demand is political.

Most people think that the Koran is a religious text. Instead, 64% of the text (by word count) is about non-Muslims, who are called Kafirs. The Koran is fixated on Kafirs and makes many demands on them. Not the least is that Kafirs submit to the rule of Islamic Sharia law. Ultimately Sharia law is the pure expression of Islamic politics and it completely contradicts our Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Under Sharia there is no freedom of speech, wives may be beaten and apostates murdered.

Mohammed had little success with Islam until he transformed it into a political system. He preached the religion of Islam in Mecca for 13 years and made about 150 converts. He left Mecca and moved to Medina. In Medina he turned to politics and jihad. In the last 9 years of his life, Mohammed was involved in an event of violence on the average of every 6 weeks. The political method persuaded every Arab to convert to Islam. The religion did not succeed; it was politics that made Islam powerful.

Bill Warner is Director of the Center for the Study of Political Islam. Contact him at bw@politicalislam.com and visit their website at http://www.politicalislam.com/. This article appeared yesterday in FrontPage Magazine.

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REAL ESTATE SPECULATORS OWN "GROUND ZERO" MOSQUE
Posted by Jack Coughlin, August 31, 2010.
 

Although the initial news reports said the buyer of the abandoned Burlington Coat factory building on Park Place was Sharif el-Gamil's "SOHO Properties", it's now been disclosed that the real buyers appear to be a group of politically connected private equity investors who formed "45 Park Place Partners, LLC" on July 7. 2009.

Furthermore, since both Sharif el-Gamal and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf may be "fronts" for whoever the other partners are in "45 Park Place Partners", and Imam Rauf and others are using religion to quite any criticism of this project, if Andrew Cuomo knew who the real owners were when former Congressman Rick Lazio demanded that Cuomo investigate who's funding this proposed mosque, rather than running for governor, Andrew Cuomo should be "tarred and feathered" and run out of town for not only allowing this criticism of 9/11 families to continue, but for endangering our troops fighting Islamic terrorists in the Middle East.

Finally, Lazio should issue a press release demanding that the partners in "45 Park Place Partners" release their partnership agreement so taxpayers can see who will financially benefit if New York City issues $80 million in tax free bonds to help finance this mosque that has given Islamic terrorists a propaganda tool to attack America.

"Mosque near ground zero may get public financing" below was written by Mark Hemingway, Commentary Staff writer for the Washington Examiner.

 

It's like someone is sitting in a room dreaming up ways to make this mosque project even more unpopular than it already is:

The Muslim center planned near the site of the World Trade Center attack could qualify for tax-free financing, a spokesman for City Comptroller John Liu said on Friday, and Liu is willing to consider approving the public subsidy.

The Democratic comptroller's spokesman, Scott Sieber, said Liu supported the project. The center has sparked an intense debate over U.S. religious freedoms and the sanctity of the Trade Center site, where nearly 3,000 perished in the September 11, 2001 attack.

"If it turns out to be financially feasible and if they can demonstrate an ability to pay off the bonds and comply with the laws concerning tax-exempt financing, we"d certainly consider it," Sieber told Reuters.

Spokesmen for Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Governor David Paterson and the Islamic center and were not immediately available.

Can't wait to hear Bloomberg's comment on this!

Jack Coughlin is Director and Newsletter Editor, Retired NYPD Superior Officers Association.

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OFFICIAL PA PLAN FOR DIPLOMATIC WAR AGAINST ISRAEL
Posted by Gabrielle Goldwater, August 30, 2010.

This is by Dr. Aaron Lerner, Director of IMRA, Independent Media Review and Analysis, an Israel-based news organization which provides an extensive digest of media, polls and significant interviews and events relating to the Israeli-Arab conflict. Its website address is http://www.imra.org.il Write him at imra@netvision.net.il

 

The following is a Google translation of an excerpt of the text of the complete "Appointment with Freedom" plan presented by PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad as published by WAFA, the PLO news agency today.
(www1.wafa.ps/arabic/index.php?action=detail&id=84449)

International Relations Sector

The overall objective

Attribution of effort in the international arena for mobilizing international support for the establishment of independent State of Palestine on the border of the fourth of June 1967 with its capital in East Jerusalem, and ensuring the participation of Palestine, and the actors in the family of the international community and to activate its constructive contribution to it, and the pursuit of Palestinian national interests in international forums, and relations and channels of communication among the

Palestinians in the diaspora and their counterparts living in Palestine.

Field action and the priority of work who is responsible

Assistance in preparing for the establishment of the state efforts at the international level to promote the program of the Palestinian government, 'Palestine: End the occupation and the establishment of the State'.

Work with the European Union in order to translate the Brussels Declaration which was issued on 8/12/2009, to practical steps, and raise the level of diplomatic representation with the European Union. Formation of a ministerial steering committees and bilaterally with a number of countries, such as the Palestinian Steering Committee — German.

Continue to make political and diplomatic efforts to secure the lifting of the siege on the Gaza Strip.

To highlight all forms of Israeli violations against the Palestinian people, their land and property in the relevant international forums.

Invite influential corporate figures periodically to visit Palestine and attention to people with assets of Palestinian and Arab.

Palestinian establishment of the agency for international cooperation in order to develop a relationship with various countries of the world, by providing the Palestinian experience in certain areas, and benefit from the experiences of others to supply the Palestinian national project.

Develop the work of public diplomacy, communication with civil society and all parties in the States through the embassies and missions Palestinian, Arab and Palestinian and Arab communities to advocate for building a Palestinian state.

Regulate the status of Palestinian communities abroad to be able to participate actively in the success of national objectives.

Working to support efforts to organize the reception and delegations of international solidarity with the peaceful popular resistance against the settlements and the wall.

Work with our Arab brothers to encourage them to visit Palestine.

Work to ensure that support plan approved by the Jerusalem Arab summit in Sirte.

Work to pass a Security Council resolution condemning the settlement and order it to stop. Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Activate the case of the wall in the General Assembly and the Security Council on the basis of the ICJ advisory opinion on it, and holding conferences, meetings and seminars to support this issue internationally, and in cooperation with the media. Ministry of State for the Wall

Go to the United Nations to request an advisory opinion of International Court of Justice (The Hague) on the legal status of Palestinian prisoners under international law.

Gabrielle Goldwater lives in Switzerland. Contact her at III44@aol.com

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A YOM KIPPUR OFFERING (THE GOAT)
Posted by Ted Roberts, August 30, 2010.
 

I know the Lord loves all his children — human and animal. But I have a feeling that he has a soft part in his heart for goats. You don't agree?

Well, consider the partiality he showed this species at creation time. He not only blessed him with a set of insides that can handle paper, rags, and tin cans, but this good natured browser received the scapegoat mission. You remember it's described in Leviticus: Aaron shall "confess" over the scapegoat all the sins of the people, symbolically transferring a load of guilt from us to the dumbfounded animal — who is then led off to the wilderness wailing over its lot with its thin, piercing shofar-like voice. He is the goat who relieves us of sin on Yom Kippur.

Its fate was scripted in the Holyday Megillah that first day of creation when the animals were assigned their roles. This was a big day in Eden. All the animals were assembled in the meadow by the water hole. One by one they were summoned to appear before the throne. Here, they would receive their assignment.

The donkey was nibbling some lush green grass near the throne, so he was first. "On YOUR back," announced the Lord, "the Moshiach shall enter my Holy City of Jerusalem. You shall be the limousine for my messenger of Peace and Justice."

But since the donkey had such a grand role — and to teach the world that appearances are trivial — the Almighty didn't over decorate him. He's a plain fellow — always schlepping stuff from Dan to Beersheva — with comic oversized ears and a voice that brings down the pine cones from the trees. And a stubborn disposition that invites kicks to the nether end of him. If you didn't read the script — the Chumash — you'd think him a clown — not a big-eared prince — in the drama of mankind.

The goat, watching carefully and awaiting his mission, moaned when he saw the Lord bless the burro with this significant role. What remained for him?

Now it was the turn of the goat. "Goat," said the Lord. "I have chosen you — not one of my most elegant creations — to be the savior of Israel. Your swaying back shall bear the sins of the people. I shall send you with your noxious bundle far away into the forsaken lands where the sun never shine. Every year at Yom Kippur, the High Priest shall select one of your breed to perform the solitary mission of absolution. You, one of the lessor creations — crying as you enter the wilderness — shall bring forgiveness."

The goat listened. Fear gripped his heart and he pawed the earth. He nervously fluttered his lovely eyelids several times in succession. Even then he had long, curly lids. But the rest of him was strictly junkyard gray with a long skinny tail like a possum that ineffectively lashed at flies that would torment him in the life to come. His ears, like the donkey's, were outrageous. He had no horns.

So when the goat heard his magnificent, but perilous assignment, he figured the Lord might be generous enough to improve his imperfect appearance. "Lord," he bleated as he thoughtfully chewed his cud. "Considering the service my tribe will render to your people, could I make a few simple requests?"

And the creator of all things from the moss on the tree trunk to Leviathan, nodded positively.

Now, remember that most of the other animals had already been formed, including the sheep. The goat was wary. He could just see those heavy handed shepherds with biting shears shaving the trembling lambs.

"Please, sir," he shrilled in his high voice. "No thick, rich fleece for me, but a nice coat of scraggly fur to keep me warm will be just fine."

And somehow this farsighted creature knew of mutton stew supplied by fat sheep. So he begged the creator to make him a muscular animal with stringy flesh. "Boney will be great, please."

Well, that took care of survival, thought the clever goat who was already envisioning a long and happy life. But hmmm, consider the broad back of the donkey. Definitely not an asset if one wanted to wander loose in the meadow without some lazy human loading you up with his paraphernalia. So he requested a slender build and shoulders no wider than his head.

"And please, sir, a digestive system that can handle tree bark and all the litter that mankind will invent and scatter in the world to come. Maybe, he thought, me and my clan can provide a solution of the waste storage problem that sooner or later will overwhelm mankind."

"And I almost forgot," said the world's first negotiator. "How 'bout some horns instead of these embarrassing ears. There should be grandeur in my banishment to the wilderness, not burlesque."

The Lord sighed and agreed. The bargain was struck. So the goat had his way, which is a small price, I say, for the load of sin he carries off to the wilderness.

Ed Roberts lives in Huntsville, Alabama. He is author of "The Scribbler On The Roof," a collection of his essays. Visit his websites
http://www.wonderwordworks.com and
http://www.scribblerontheroof.typepad.com

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FROM ISRAEL: COUNTDOWN
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 30, 2010.
 

...to those meetings in Washington, which shouldn't be happening at all and can come to no good.

Let's look first at the words of peace from PA Minister of Religious Affairs Mahmoud Al-Habbash, taken from his Friday sermon of two weeks ago:

"Jerusalem can ignite a thousand and one wars", he warned, and unless Jerusalem "returns" to the Palestinians, "its owners," and unless it becomes the capital of the Palestinian people, "there is no peace.

"If Jerusalem is dishonored, if Jerusalem is disgraced, if [Jerusalem] is lost, it may leave the door open to all possibilities of struggle, all possibilities of war. The term 'war' cannot be erased from the lexicon of this region as long as Jerusalem is occupied..."

This sermon was delivered in the presence of PA President Mahmoud Abbas. It ran on PA-TV on August 20, and is reported in translation by Palestinian Media Watch.
http://palwatch.org/main.aspx?fi=472&fld_id=474& doc_id=2965 (includes a video that shows Abbas present)

There should be no illusion.

~~~~~~~~~~

For the record, and to dispel even the slightest doubt: Jerusalem never "belonged" to the Palestinian Arabs. Never.

~~~~~~~~~~

I rather like Sarah Stern's citation of Henry Kissinger:

"When the pursuit of peace becomes the entire objective of foreign policy, it becomes a weapon in the hands of the most ruthless. It produces moral disarmament."

This, of course, is what is going on with the Obama administration, and Stern, founder of EMET, tracks some significant history relevant to what's happening now and the dangers we face, in her excellent piece, "Here We Go Round the Cactus Bush":
www.emetonlineblog.com/2010/08/ roundthecactusbush/

~~~~~~~~~~

On the eve of his departure for Washington, Prime Minister Netanyahu has released a statement via his office:

"We have insisted that these talks be held without pre-conditions and thus it will be."

So there's a "problem" to begin with, because (as I've noted before) Abbas insists he is willing to come to Washington based on the Quartet statement, which requires an extension of the freeze in building, among other things. Will things move beyond the "pre-negotiations" meeting on September 2? Will Abbas walk, or will Netanyahu, who still insists the freeze will not be extended, concede some "creative" solution?

Netanyahu says "Our goal is to seriously and responsibly advance a peace agreement that will be based on the following principles:

"First of all, the recognition of Israel as the national state of the Jewish People, the end of the conflict and of claims on Israel, that will stem from recognizing it as the national state of the Jewish People, and the establishment of tangible security measures on the ground so as to ensure that there will not be a repeat in Judea and Samaria of what happened in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip after Israel withdrew from these areas."

Not sufficient, but a solid beginning. If he were to solidly adhere to this, should there be negotiations, we would have no need to fear a "two state solution." Which does not mean the negotiations themselves are without dangers, as Stern, above, points out.

~~~~~~~~~~

From this the prime minister launches into politically calculated nonsense about a peace for generations that can be achieved if "the Palestinian leadership approaches these talks with the same degree of seriousness."

Right.

~~~~~~~~~~

It seems the right time, given the Abbas demands, to review once again the reasons why the Arabs cannot claim everything beyond the Green Line — even though they have much of the world convinced that they can:

[] The very areas that the Arabs claim as "theirs" — eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria — remain at the heart of ancient Jewish heritage in the land. No spot on earth is as sacred to the Jews as the Temple Mount, where two Temples stood — the presence on that Mount of a mosque today in no way changes this. (A mosque, it should be noted, that was placed specifically there with intent.) Within Judea and Samaria are such sites as Judaism's second holiest city, Hebron, with the Machpela, the Cave of the Patriarchs, and Kever Rachel (Rachel's Tomb) and Shilo, where the Tabernacle was brought.

[] The Mandate for Palestine of 1922, confirmed within international law by the League of Nations and never superseded, acknowledges all of the land from the river to the sea to be part of a Jewish homeland. It was based on a recognition of this ancient Jewish heritage.

[] The Green Line was never a border, but only a temporary armistice line at the end of fighting in 1949. Written into Israel's armistice agreement with Jordan was an explicit understanding that this armistice line would not prejudice future negotiations on a final border for Israel.

[] After the war in 1967, when Israel took control of Judea and Samaria, UN SC Resolution 242, recognizing that the Green Line was not a secure border for Israel, required only partial withdrawal from Judea and Samaria. And this withdrawal only in the context of full negotiations.

Israel moved into Judea and Samaria in a defensive war, which provides further legal justification for not pulling all the way back: It is understood that in a defensive war acquisition of additional strategic depth is often necessary to reduce vulnerability and preclude further attacks.

[] All understandings — Oslo, etc. — require negotiations for determination of the final borders. No where is it written that the Green Line is the border or that the border should be agreed upon prior to negotiations.

~~~~~~~~~~

As to the whole business about not building in "settlements":

[] The Palestinian Arabs managed to negotiate in 2000 (Arafat with Barak) and then in 2008 (Abbas with Olmert) without a prior stipulation requiring a freeze. This is a new addition to the Arab demands.

[] The bottom-line implication of this stipulation is that a Palestinian state would have to be Judenrein. Somehow the world accepts this, even though 20% of Israel is Arab. There is no logical reason why Jews could not remain in land that might become a Palestinian state.

[] The entire premise of the freeze is to prevent encroachment on what will — in the PA conceptualization of matters — soon officially become Palestinian land. But the parameters of that land must be negotiated and are not yet determined.

[] In light of the fact that the borders are not determined, there is an essential injustice at work: Arabs are permitted to continue building in what might, after negotiations, be part of Israel. Only Jews are inhibited from building.

(I trust that my readers understand that the above is hypothetical — important for the sake of argument — and in no way an expression of my expectation that a Palestinian state will emerge shortly.)

~~~~~~~~~~

I end with this, one of the most eloquent and thoughtful essays I've read on the issue of the mosque at Ground Zero: "The World Trade Center Mosque and the Constitution," by Mark Helprin, in the Wall Street Journal.

"The plan to erect a mosque of major proportions in what would have been the shadow of the World Trade Center involves not just the indisputable constitutional rights that sanction it, but, providentially, others that may frustrate it.

"Mosques have commemoratively been established upon the ruins or in the shells of the sacred buildings of other religions — most notably but not exclusively in Cordoba, Jerusalem, Istanbul, and India. When sited in this fashion they are monuments to victory, and the chief objection to this one is not to its existence but that it would be near the site of atrocities — not just one — closely associated with mosques because they were planned and at times celebrated in them.

"Building close to Ground Zero disregards the passions, grief and preferences not only of most of the families of September 11th but, because we are all the families of September 11th, those of the American people as well, even if not the whole of the American people. If the project is to promote moderate Islam, why have its sponsors so relentlessly, without the slightest compromise, insisted upon such a sensitive and inflammatory setting? That is not moderate. It is aggressively militant.

"Disregarding pleas to build it at a sufficient remove so as not to be linked to an abomination committed, widely praised, and throughout the world seldom condemned in the name of Islam, the militant proponents of the World Trade Center mosque are guilty of a poorly concealed provocation. They dare Americans to appear anti-Islamic and intolerant or just to roll over.

"...constitutionally...there is unquestionably a right to build...we have principles that we value highly and will not abandon. The difficulty is that the principles of equal treatment and freedom of religion have, so to speak, been taken hostage by the provocation. As in many hostage situations, the choice seems to be between injuring what we hold dear or accepting defeat. This, anyway, is how it has played out so far.

"The proponents of the mosque know that Americans will not and cannot betray our constitutional liberties. Knowing that we would not rip the foundation from the more than 200 years of our history that it underpins, they may imagine that they have achieved a kind of checkmate.

"Their knowledge of the Constitution, however, does not penetrate very far, and perhaps they are not as clever as they think. The Constitution is a marvelous document, and a reasonable interpretation of it means as well that no American can be forced to pour concrete. No American can be forced to deliver materials. No American can be forced to bid on a contract, to run conduit, dig a foundation, or join steel.

"And a reasonable interpretation of the Constitution means that the firemen's, police, and restaurant workers' unions, among others, and the families of the September 11th dead, and anyone who would protect, sympathize with and honor them, are free to assemble, protest and picket at the site of the mosque that under the Constitution is free to be built.

" reasonable interpretation of the Constitution means that no American can be forced to cross a picket line in violation of conscience or even of mere preference. Who, in all decency, would cross a picket line manned by those whose kin were slaughtered — by the thousands — so terribly nearby? And who in all decency would cross such a line manned by the firemen, police and other emergency personnel who know every day that they may be called upon to give their lives in a second act?

"Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York, says of those who with heartbreaking bravery went into the towers: "We do not honor their lives by denying the very constitutional rights they died protecting."

"Mr. Mayor, the firemen, the police, the EMTs and the paramedics who rushed into those buildings, many of them knowing that they would die there, did not do so to protect constitutional rights. They went often knowingly to their deaths to protect what the Constitution itself protects: people, flesh and blood, men and women, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, sisters and brothers. Although you yourself may not know this, they did.

"The choice is not between abandoning them or abandoning the Constitution, for although the liberties the Constitution guarantees sometimes put us at a disadvantage even of self-preservation, they also make it possible for 300 million Americans to prevail — reasonably, peacefully, and within the limits of the law — against provocations such as this.

"They make it possible to prevent the construction of the mosque at this general location...not by force or decree but by argument, persuasion, and peaceable assembly. These are rights that the Constitution guarantees as well, and clearly it is one's constitutional right to oppose the mosque, not to participate in the building of it, and to convince others of the same."
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424 052748704147804575455503946170176.html

~~~~~~~~~~

Hopefully Americans are picking up on this theme and preparing now to respond as described. What a glorious victory it would be if picketing Americans in large numbers stopped mosque construction.
(Thanks, Gordon P.)

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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THE JIHAD PRESIDENT
Posted by Gabrielle Goldwater, August 30, 2010.

This was written by Rich Carroll.

 

Conspiracy theory or real life events?

Over two years ago I wrote "The Jihad Candidate;" warning readers that Barack Hussein Obama was a Muslim plant hand-picked to destroy America. How I wish I'd been taken seriously. Get yourself something cool to drink, find a relaxing position, and let's examine what has happened, but before we continue I want you to vividly remember those two jet airliners slamming into the twin towers of lower Manhattan. I want you to remember those American citizens just like you who jumped from the fiery flames to their death because that end would be quicker, less painful. Please remember the dancing and cheering from the Arab Street. Keep those images indelibly in your vision, because the Muslim White House would have you believe "ground zero" doesn't matter anymore.

Since February, 2010, Barack Obama has given Islamic terrorist organization HAMAS, $1.23 billion U.S. dollars. Additionally, Obama has agreed to take 100,000 Gaza residents into the United States as "resettled immigrants," all on your tax dollars. How will these "refugees" find a job with an unemployment rate of 12% here? This president refuses to prosecute the Muslim mastermind of the U.S.S. Cole bombing in 2000, which took the lives of 17 American sailors, yet he persisted in the prosecution of Navy SEAL Matthew McCabe and 1LT Michael Behenna for doing their jobs to fight Muslim Al Qaeda. What? Whose side is Obama on? Any president in American history would have decorated both young men for their heroism on national television. Obama's answer? Coddle the brutal murderer of 30 United States soldiers at Ft. Hood, Texas, Nadal Hasan, and continue his contemptuous assault on our military. But what can you expect from a "president" who holds a special White House Ramadan dinner for 100 of his close Muslim friends (many with ties to terrorism) and basks in the applause of his support to build a "mosque de triomph" at ground zero, which will be used as Sharia finance center. He and his sycophant Muslim apologists continue their efforts to strengthen the false conception of Islam as a benign religion. This chorus of Islamophiles warble melodious delights about a "peaceful" Islam. They want to airbrush out the misery and spoliation of conquered peoples, the executions and martyrdoms, the rapes, and pedophilia, the child abuse, the humiliations and oppression, and the 15,486 Muslim terrorists bombings and human carnage since 911. Despite our Presidents protestations, such historical facts are the only important information needed as far as "understanding Islam." Could this be the reason Obama's approval rating among Americans is 41 percent and his approval rating among Muslims is 78 per cent? How can any thinking, clear minded American make sense of such things?

Telling audiences that "Islam has contributed to the rich history of America" is a lie Obama continues to spread in challenged. Islam, and Muslims, did NOT have any influence on our founding or our culture. Obama fails to tell his drug induced crowd of followers that the Koran (the "Holy Koran" as he calls it) tells readers 109 times to murder infidels and Jews. How positively "peaceful." But what else do you expect from a foreign born Muslim who endorsed the mosque at ground zero in New York by having the gall to wrap his decision in the cloak of the First Amendment. Any real American president would feel the pain of Americans from 911 and put a stop to the mosque. What a slap in the face of every American citizen! Obama's disdain for America continues unabated as he approves to finance the fund-raising "sensitivity tour" of his friend Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, (who said in a 2001 interview that the United States was responsible for 911, that the blood was on OUR hands). Did you realize you were paying for Rauf's trip around Europe, the Middle East and all of his expenses? This gets even worse: Obama approved millions to be spent on the renovation of mosques in 27 countries around the world. Isn't it nice knowing where your tax dollars are being spent during the biggest recession since 1929?

Obama, foreign born? Yes, that nasty "missing birth certificate" hasn't gone away, and the nation of Kenya continues to insist he is their native. Obama's hatred of America is further revealed in his steadfast refusal to defend the borders of the United States and submit the State of Arizona to the United Nations for violation of human rights? Violation of human rights? He needs to report his beloved Islam for butchering women! The State of Arizona is only trying to do HIS job because he will not. This president has opened the door for terrorists and disease to freely enter America, and for that alone he should be impeached.

This week Obama ordered the release of several hundred captured "illegal aliens," violating our immigration laws and imposing a back door amnesty plan without the consent of Congress. Obama doesn't care about you, the crime caused by illegals, the expense of a few hundred thousand anchor babies or who will pay for them. He obviously doesn't care that an illegal could enter the United States with smallpox or a nuclear weapon and murder 80,000 Americans. Someone raised in the world's most Muslim nation, Indonesia, doesn't care about you. Someone with close ties to Muslim terrorism in the Middle East and Africa doesn't care about your day-to-day issues; he cannot identify; his heart and sympathies lie elsewhere.

Is Barack Hussein Obama President of the United States or merely a katib (secretary to the Islamic Caliph)? Angry and informed Americans already know the answer. Look at ISLAMONCAPITALHILL.COM to see his agenda. His disdain for America, our history and our traditions, grows more contemptible (and obvious) each day. Americans be damned, nothing can sway him. Those who had any doubts are learning why a guy named "Barry" would change his name to match Mohammed's horse: Barack.

Where is America's liberal press in all this mess? Drinking the kool-aid of our first black president, they forget his allegiances lie with Muslims because being called a "racist" by the White House is a fate worse than destruction at the hands of Islam. Remember in his book "Dreams of My Father" that Obama said "if the political winds shift in an ugly direction I will side with them (Muslims)?" Well, he meant it!

We face in the coming months and years critical points in history that will determine our future existence as a sovereign nation. To scale the fortress walls of financial ruin brought-on by the indulgent "stim-you-less" waste of a trillion dollars that did nothing more than pay-off Obama's campaign contributors and a catastrophic housing finance scheme fueled by insistent liberal meddling, we need an American aware of the need of financial restraint and not someone who continues to wholesale spend (including unlimited lavish vacations). These are the times that try men's souls; a time requiring unity. We must not be torn-apart by someone forcing the nation of Islam onto our culture. Democrats too much realize, we are at that apogee in American history that we must save our country first, or we will not have a two-party political system to save. Americans realize we need a president that was raised in America; one who would say "the most beautiful sound is the song 'America the Beautiful,' not "the Azan, or early morning Muslim prayer call." Americans are fed-up with Acorn, and Islam and Chicago thug politics and a president who uses a gold Arabic cloth as his speech backdrop instead of the Stars and Stripes of our national flag. America is disgusted with the racism and bigotry spread by the likes of Jeremiah Wright and Louis Farrakhan and Barack Obama. We want a president who will instruct NASA that their job is space exploration, not making murdering Muslims feel good about themselves.

We want our nation back before it's too late. Which side are you on?

Gabrielle Goldwater lives in Switzerland. Contact her at III44@aol.com

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WHO IS REALLY FUNDING THE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE?
Posted by Gabrielle Goldwater, August 29, 2010.

This was written by Joseph Klein and it appeared August 27, 2010 on David Horowitz's News Real Blog
http://www.newsrealblog.com/2010/08/27/ who-is-really-funding-the-ground-zero-mosque/

 

For weeks, critics of the 13 story $100 million mega-mosque complex planned for the immediate Ground Zero vicinity have been asking where the funding will be coming from. Its sponsors refuse to provide any information and have even refused to rule out taking contributions from other countries including Iran and Saudi Arabia.

When a reporter from the local Fox station in New York, Charles Leaf, caught up with the mosque complex developer Sharif el-Gamal and asked him to explain the funding, el-Gamal ducked the question. The reporter, interviewed last night on the "O'Reilly Factor" by Laura Ingraham (filling in for Bill O'Reilly), shared results of his own investigation.

It turns out that Sharif el-Gamal was a waiter a few years ago, who has turned into a real estate powerhouse. Of course, there's nothing wrong with making it big in America, as long as el-Gamal is playing by the rules. But is he? Charles Leaf found out that el-Gamal's SOHO Properties real estate business, which owns the site on which the Ground Zero mosque is to be built, has been receiving financial support from an Egyptian-born owner of several medical companies named Hisham Elzanaty. Elzanaty, Mr. Leaf reports, is the guarantor on a $39 million loan that el-Gamal's company assumed.

Mr. Elzanaty's name is listed in campaign donation records as contributing to the campaigns of President Obama and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, both supporters of the mosque.

One of Mr. Elzanty's companies was audited by New York State Office of the Medicaid Inspector General who found that the company was overpaid $331,336 for Medicaid services.

Hisham Elzanaty was also in the center of a racketeering and fraud suit brought against him and others by State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company in 2007. The complaint charged, among other things, that Mr. Elzanaty arranged for a doctor to set up a "facade" of fraudulently incorporated professional service companies under her name, which Elzanatry actually controlled, to receive payments from State Farm that they were not eligible to receive.

The complaint described Elzanatry's alleged scheme as a:

common "shell game" used by participants in doc-in-the-box arrangements — to create entities with new names and new tax identification numbers (like Quality Medical) to continue submitting fraudulent charges to insurers for the same medically unnecessary services provided by the same individuals in the same locations, after insurers begin questioning the claims of other entities with other tax identification numbers (like Accurate Medical and JP Medical) which are controlled by the same people (like Elzanaty)

This racketeering suit was apparently settled, although its terms are undisclosed. But the suit reveals a disturbing pattern of alleged conduct by Mr. Elzanatry that may well be at work in helping to fund the developer behind the Ground Zero mosque.

We know that radical Islamist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood operate through many front organizations. Could the funding of the Ground Zero mosque be all part of an elaborate mosque-in-the box shell game to cover up something far more sinister? Maybe not. But we won't know until the Ground Zero mosque developer Sharif el-Gamal and his financial backer Hisham Elzanaty begin to come clean about where their money is really coming from.

Gabrielle Goldwater lives in Switzerland. Contact her at III44@aol.com

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FROM ISRAEL: OUT IN FORCE
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 29, 2010.
 

Not military troops, but the Obama-supporting "pro-peace" guys. Prior to the meetings in Washington, they're working overtime to convince people that everything is going to be just great, and that, with a proper application of "hard work," peace is going to break out any time soon now.

Do not believe it for a second. The facts tell another story. Whatever these "experts" are saying, it is critical to hold fast to the reality, and share it in all possible venues.

Last week, a high profile David Makovsky, director of the project on the Middle East of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, wrote a piece in the JPost — "Quiet progress in the long quest for peace" — in which he described how, in spite of problems, progress was being made by the PA.

One of the issues he touched upon was education in PA supervised schools, something I just happen to have some familiarity with. Makovsky wrote: "screening is also being conducted [by the PA] to weed out school teachers who support Hamas radicalism."

Sounds great, huh? After this effort is completed, all those teachers who support that nasty Hamas radicalism will be eliminated, and only teachers who support the moderate Fatah line will remain. This clearly is the "between the lines" message here. Except that there's a really major problem:

It is the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority, and not Hamas, that produced the textbooks filled with incitement that the PA schools use. The textbooks that say Jews have no roots in the land, and that all of Israel is "Palestine," and that jihad and "martyrdom" are praiseworthy. So, even if all the Hamas-oriented teachers were eliminated, the message the kids were getting would still be the same. Some "progress."

~~~~~~~~~~

Makovsky also wrote that, "The PA has begun reshaping the curriculum of Palestinian institutions that accredit imams..."

I don't know about imam education in the PA, and so I went to someone who knows quite well: Dr. Arnon Groiss, Director of Research for IMPACT-SE — which monitors Arab educational materials; I greatly respect his knowledge and his integrity.

Dr. Groiss told me that he wishes it were so that the curriculum for imams was being revised, but he has heard nothing about this. The PA Ministry of Religious Affairs oversees ten schools that train imams. These schools use 25 texts in different religious subjects that are either published by or for the PA, in Jordan. Bearing the PA logo, they were all originally Jordanian.

More "progress."

~~~~~~~~~~

Those who saw my letter to the JPost on Friday addressing this subject will find the above a repeat. But I considered this information important enough to merit being shared more broadly.

~~~~~~~~~~

Then there was another heavy hitter — Martin Indyk, the director of the foreign policy program at the Brookings Institution — whose piece in the NY Times appeared at the same time Makovsky's did in the JPost. His was entitled, "For Once, Hope in the Middle East."

No friend of Israel in the best of circumstances, Indyk made a series of dubious statements. It will suffice to examine a couple of the most significant:

"First, violence is down considerably in the region. Throughout the 1990s, Israel was plagued by terrorist attacks, which undermined its leaders" ability to justify tangible concessions...Israelis came to believe that the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was playing a double game, professing peace in the negotiations while allowing terrorists to operate in territory he was supposed to control.

"Today, the Palestinian Authority is policing its West Bank territory to prevent violent attacks on Israelis and to prove its reliability as a negotiating partner...

"These efforts, combined with more effective Israeli security measures, have meant that the number of Israeli civilians killed in terrorist attacks has dropped."

~~~~~~~~~~

The worst plague of terror attacks was not in the 90s, however. It was beginning in 2000, with the Palestinian Arab war known as the second intifada. The terrorism in the 90s hadn't inhibited Israeli leaders (such as they were) from making "tangible concessions." It was in 2000 that huge concessions were made by then PM Ehud Barak, which included such things as the sharing of Jerusalem and a very substantial pull back from Judea and Samaria. Only AFTER these tangible concessions were made did Arafat unleash the new wave of terror.

~~~~~~~~~~

As to the PA "policing its West Bank territory," "policing" is probably the correct word. I understand, that they do effectively go after car thieves and the like. However, their ability and desire to pursue terrorists, while improved, is, shall we say, less successful. The bottom line is that terrorist attacks against Israelis are way down because in 2002 the IDF went back into Palestinian-controlled areas from which we had pulled back. And since 2002 we have maintained the right to go after terrorists in these areas, even in places where we have in recent times allowed more control by PA security forces. We operate at night, and, as I understand it (although the IDF has stonewalled my attempts to learn roughly how many operations occur nightly) there are multiple operations each night — after specific terrorists, as well as weapons manufacturing and storage sites.

Please note that what is at the heart of terrorist control operations is mentioned peripherally by Indyk: "These efforts, combined with more effective Israeli security measures..."

If PA forces are attempting to prevent terror attacks against Israelis at the moment (a questionable proposition at best), it is because it is politically expedient to do so at this particular moment, and not because of any intrinsic concern for bringing peace to their Jewish neighbors. The bottom line is that Fatah will never move to totally take out Hamas in Judea and Samaria. In spite of the very real tensions and animosities between Fatah and Hamas, they are also bound together in many ways. In this traditional society, where allegiance to the clan remains strong, there may be Fatah and Hamas people within one clan. The fact remains (never addressed by people like Indyk) that more than 50% of the PA budget goes to Gaza, and thus finds its way, in some considerable measure, into Hamas hands.

This reality stands as a strong argument for not giving the Palestinian Authority a state in Judea and Samaria: There are many very savvy analysts who believe that if the IDF were to pull out, Hamas would move in.

~~~~~~~~~~

Enough said here. The reader of analyses such as those by Makovsky and Indyk are advised to think twice.

~~~~~~~~~~

I have repeatedly said that Abbas worries for his life, literally, with regard to his negotiating with Israel — because a number of terrorist-oriented groups are opposed to his doing so, and they play very rough indeed.

Now we have something that gives additional credence to this:

Yesterday, Hamas leader Khalil al-Hayya issued a warning to the PA with regard to negotiations. He said that "the Izz-a-Din al-Qassam Brigades [the Hamas military wing] will step on the heads of those who dare cede the right of return, Jerusalem, and Palestine."

I had always sort of envisioned a throat-slitting sort of threat, but stepping on heads makes the point just as graphically, or more so. What does it avail Abbas to sit at the table if he can safely make no concessions on "return," Jerusalem, or borders — while indeed the US and the EU will be expecting him to do just that?

~~~~~~~~~~

It's difficult indeed to read reports of the enormous enthusiasm with which Netanyahu embraces the idea of direct negotiations — even as he adds the proviso that all of this depends on a cooperative PA. His latest was a suggestion that he and Abbas meet directly every two weeks. (Netanyahu has said he himself will head talks.)

Not only has Abbas already nixed this, he is attempting to set a scene that will make failure of those talks (that haven't started yet) our fault. Claiming that "Israel's security can't continue to be the excuse for continued occupation," he says he has already notified US and other international leaders that Israel will bear full responsibility for the failure of the peace talks if we don't extend the freeze on building.

Habayit Hayehudi leaders have said they will likely pull out of the coalition if the freeze is extended.

We're coming down to the wire, and all bets are off in terms of how this will play out.

~~~~~~~~~~

I categorize this still in the realm of rumor, but one having significant enough import to merit a mention here: According to the Daily Telegraph (UK) yesterday, Obama will be visiting Israel as part of his "peace" push. Nothing official from either the US or Israel.

Fervently do I hope he stays away. I have no desire to see him curry favor at our expense. The major impact for me of his being here would be that his entourage and accompanying security would cause unbearable traffic snarls.

~~~~~~~~~~

Another rumor making the rounds: That Obama intends to advance a "peace plan" that would be signed in a year but wouldn't be implemented for ten. This, if true, suggests that he knows darn well that the situation is not ripe for peace now, but that he wants the credit for having promoted it.

A very dangerous plan, reminiscent of the plan to be put on a shelf from the last administration. If the situation doesn't permit an agreement, no agreement should be made. Period. Who knows what will be in ten years?

A watch and see situation...

~~~~~~~~~~

Let me return briefly to the issue of the string of photos that has been broadly sent out by e-mail, without attribution, represented as pictures showing a more upscale Gaza.

My original impression that all was not legit has been confirmed in a variety of ways. Let me pass by the fact that I located a photographer's name on one, but found, when googling him, only pictures he had taken of Dubai, and that the name of the hotel seen in another picture cannot be located on the Internet as being in Gaza.

One reader wrote to say that a very reliable acquaintance of hers identified one photo as being in Casablanca, where she grew up.

The British-Israel Group (BIG) has also issued a proviso, very similar to mine, with regard to these photos. Said BIG:

"These photos had NO context and NO description and were highly suspect.

"From research by Tom Gross, a correspondent whose articles we have used in the past, it appears that some of the photos are actually from Damascus or Beirut, and one we know for certain is from a beach in Ashdod."

Lastly I note that there has been a claim that there was a documenting source: that Arutz Sheva had presented this list of photos. But none of the e-mail transmissions I saw mentioned Arutz Sheva, and with good reason: Arutz Sheva showed 13 photos. The anonymous e-mails showed 36. Seems the original Arutz Sheva list of photos was borrowed as a starting point, with some creative additions then made.

~~~~~~~~~~

A return, as well, to the issue of Z Street being held up on receiving status as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, which would permit tax exemptions for donations, essentially because Z Street's position on Israel doesn't comport with Obama's. This is a situation that has prompted Z Street co-founder Lori Lowenthal Marcus to bring suit against the IRS for interference with First Amendment rights.

According to Z Street: "An IRS agent told Z Street's lawyers that the application was delayed because of a Special Israel Policy that requires greater scrutiny of organizations which have to do with Israel, in part to determine whether they espouse positions on Israel contrary to those of the current Administration." These cases are referred to a "special unit in the DC office."

If this doesn't scare the hell out of you, you're asleep at the wheel. Involve your organizations in protesting, without delay!

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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ACCEPTING THE UNACCEPTABLE
Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, August 29, 2010.

As you read the following article by Caroline Glick, you might conclude that the present Israeli Government is not mentally prepared to face her enemies especially those backed by the Obama regime. One is reminded of the Judenrat during WWII who served the interests of the German regime simply because they feared for their own and their family's lives. In the end, none were spared.

Presently we observe an Israeli government who appears more frightened of angering the Obama regime — even at the risk of being exterminated by the aberrant Islamic regime of Iran. Perhaps it would be preferable if the Netanyahu government would be more fearful of the Israeli people who would surely threaten them — as Jews treated the Judenrat who betrayed the Jews into jaws of a hideous death.

After the war some survivors hunted the Judenrat whom they could find and summarily executed them. I suppose that would meet the criteria of "Don't Get Mad, Get Even".

Perhaps the Judenrat would not have been so cooperative if they thought their end would not be to die of old age but rather, to be hunted as a criminal.

This article appeared August 27, 2010 in the Jerusalem Post
(http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Columnists/ Article.aspx?id=186171).

 

From a military perspective, the longer Israel waits to attack Iran, the harder it will become to accomplish the mission.

Last weekend the mullahs took a big step towards becoming a nuclear power as they fueled the Bushehr nuclear reactor.

Israel's response? The Foreign Ministry published a statement proclaiming the move "unacceptable."

So why did we accept the unacceptable? When one asks senior officials about the Bushehr reactor and about Iran's nuclear program more generally, their response invariably begins, "Well the Americans..."

Far from accepting that Israel has a problem that it must deal with, Israel's decision-makers still argue that the US will discover — before it is too late — that it must act to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power in order to secure its own interests.

As for Bushehr specifically, Israeli officials explain that it isn't the main problem. The main danger stems from the uranium enrichment sites. And anyway, they explain, given the civilian character of the Bushehr reactor; the fact that it is under a full International Atomic Energy Agency inspections regime; and the fact that the Russians are supposed to take all the spent fuel rods to Russia and so prevent Iran from using them to produce weapons-grade plutonium, Israel lacked the international legitimacy to strike Bushehr to prevent it from being fueled last weekend.
 

BEFORE GOING into the question of whether Israel's decision-makers were correct in opting out of attacking the Bushehr reactor to prevent it from being fueled, it is worth considering where "the Americans" stand on Iran as it declares itself a nuclear power and tests new, advanced weapons systems on a daily basis.

The answer to this question was provided in large part in an article in the National Interest by former Clinton administration National Security Council member Bruce Riedel. Titled, "If Israel Attacks," Riedel — who reportedly has close ties to the current administration — asserts that an Israeli military strike against Iran will be a disaster for the US. In his view, the US is better served by allowing Iran to become a nuclear power than by supporting an Israeli attack against Iran.

He writes, "The United States needs to send a clear red light to Israel. There's no option but to actively discourage an Israeli attack."

Riedel explains that to induce Israel to accept the unacceptable specter of a nuclear armed mullocracy, the US should pay it off. Riedel recommends plying Israel's leaders with F-22 Stealth bombers, nuclear submarines, a mutual defense treaty and perhaps even NATO membership.

Riedel's reason for deeming an Israeli strike unacceptable is his conviction that such an operation will be met by an Iranian counter-strike against US forces and interests in the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan. While there is no reason to doubt he is correct, Riedel studiously ignores the other certainty: A nuclear-armed Iran would threaten those same troops and interests far more.

Riedel would have us believe that the Iranian regime will be a rational nuclear actor. That's the regime that has outlawed music, stones women, and deploys terror proxies throughout the region and the world. That's the same regime whose "supreme leader" just published a fatwa claiming he has the same religious stature as Muhammad.

Riedel bases this view on the actions Iran took when it was weak.

Since Iran didn't place its American hostages on trial in 1980, it can be trusted with nuclear weapons in 2010. Since Iran didn't go to war against the US in 1988 during the Kuwaiti tanker crisis, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad can be trusted with nuclear bombs in 2010. And so on and so forth.

Moreover, Riedel ignores what any casual newspaper reader now recognizes: Iran's nuclear weapons program has spurred a regional nuclear arms race. Riedel imagines a bipolar nuclear Middle East, with Israel on the one side and Iran on the other. He fails to notice that already today Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Sudan and Turkey have all initiated nuclear programs.

And if Iran is allowed to go nuclear, these countries will beat a path to any number of nuclear bomb stores.

Some argue that a multipolar nuclear Middle East will adhere to the rules of mutual assured destruction. Assuming this is true, the fact remains that the violent Iranian response to an Israeli strike against its nuclear installations will look like a minor skirmish in comparison to the conventional wars that will break out in a Middle East in which everyone has the bomb.

And in truth, there is no reason to believe that a Middle East in which everyone has nuclear weapons is a Middle East that adheres to the rules of MAD. A recent Zogby/University of Maryland poll of Arab public opinion taken for the Brookings Institute in US-allied Arab states Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and the UAE shows that the Arab world is populated by jihadists.

As Herb London from the Hudson Institute pointed out in an analysis of the poll, nearly 70 percent of those polled said the leader they most admire is either a jihadist or a supporter of jihad.

The most popular leaders were Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Ahmadinejad, Hizbullah chieftain Hassan Nasrallah, Syrian President Bashar Assad and al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

So if popular revolutions bring down any of the teetering despotic regimes now occupying the seats of power in the Arab world, they will likely be replaced by jihadists. Moreover, since an Iranian nuclear bomb would empower the most radical, destabilizing forces in pan-Arab society, the likelihood that a despot would resort to a nuclear strike on a Western or Israeli target in order to stay in power would similarly rise.

All of this should not be beyond the grasp of an experienced strategic thinker like Riedel. And yet, obviously, it is. Moreover, as an alumnus of the Clinton administration, Riedel's positions in general are more realistic than those of the Obama administration. As Israeli officials acknowledge, the Obama administration is only now coming to terms with the fact that its engagement policy towards Iran has failed.

Moreover, throughout the US government, the White House is the most stubborn defender of the notion that the Iranian nuclear threat is not as serious a threat as the absence of a Palestinian state. That is, President Barack Obama himself is the most strident advocate of a US Middle East policy that ignores all the dangers the US faces in the region and turns American guns against the only country that doesn't threaten any US interest.

And now, facing this state of affairs, Israeli leaders today still argue that issuing a Foreign Ministry communiqué declaring the fueling of the Bushehr nuclear reactor "unacceptable," and beginning worthless negotiations with Fatah leaders is a rational and sufficient Israeli policy.
 

WHAT LIES behind this governmental fecklessness? There are two possible explanations for the government's behavior. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu may be motivated by operational concerns or he may be motivated by political concerns.

On the operational level, the question guiding Israel's leaders is when is the optimal time to attack? The fact that government sources say that it would have been diplomatically suicidal to attack before Bushehr became operational last weekend makes it clear that nonmilitary considerations are the determining factor for Israel's leadership. Yet what Riedel's article and the clear positions of the Obama administration demonstrate is that there is no chance that nonmilitary conditions will ever be optimal for Israel. Moreover, as Israel's 1981 attack on Iraq's nuclear reactor shows, Israel can achieve its strategic objectives even without US support for its operations.

From a military perspective, it is clear that it would have been better to strike Iran's nuclear installations before the Russians fueled Bushehr.

Any attack scenario from now on will have to either accept the prospect of nuclear fallout or accept leaving Bushehr intact. Indeed from a military perspective, the longer Israel waits to attack Iran, the harder it will become to accomplish the mission.

So unless Israel's leaders are unaware of strategic realities, the only plausible explanation for Netanyahu's decision to sit by idly as Israel's military options were drastically diminished over the weekend is that he was moved by domestic political considerations.

And what might those political considerations be? Clearly he wasn't concerned with a lack of public support. Consistent, multiyear polling data show that the public overwhelmingly supports the use of force to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power.

Then there is the issue of Netanyahu's coalition.

It cannot be that Netanyahu believes that he can build a broader coalition to support an attack on Iran than he already has by bringing Kadima into his government. Kadima leader Tzipi Livni is not a great supporter of an Israeli attack on Iran. Livni views being liked by Obama as more important than preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear state.

The prospect of a Kadima splinter party led by former defense minister Shaul Mofaz joining the coalition is also raised periodically. Yet experience indicates there is little chance of that happening.

Mofaz apparently dislikes Netanyahu more than he dislikes the notion of facing a nuclear-armed Iran (and a nuclear-armed Saudi Arabia and Egypt and etc., etc., etc.).

Only one possibility remains: Netanyahu must have opted to sit on his hands as Bushehr was powered up because of opposition he faces from within his government. There is only one person in Netanyahu's coalition who has both the strategic dementia and the political power to force Netanyahu to accept the unacceptable.

That person is Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

Barak's strategic ineptitude is legendary. It was most recently on display in the failed naval commando takeover of the Turkish-Hamas terror ship Mavi Marmara. It was Barak's idea to arm naval commandos with paintball guns and so guarantee that they would be attacked and forced to use lethal force to defend themselves.

Barak's ability to dictate government policy was most recently demonstrated in his obscene abuse of power in the appointment of the IDF's next chief of staff. Regardless of whether the so-called "Galant Document," which set out a plan to see Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant appointed to replace outgoing IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, was forged or authentic, it is clear that its operative clauses were all being implemented by Barak's own office for the past several months. So, too, despite the fact that the document is still the subject of police investigation, Barak successfully strong-armed Netanyahu into agreeing to his lightning appointment of Galant.

Even if Galant is the best candidate for the position, it is clear that Barak did the general no favors by appointing him in this manner. He certainly humiliated and discredited the General Staff.

Barak is the Obama administration's favorite Israeli politician. While Netanyahu is shunned, Barak is feted in Washington nearly every month. And this makes sense. As the man directly responsible for Israel's defense and with his stranglehold on the government, he alone has the wherewithal to enable the entire Middle East to go nuclear.

How's that for unacceptable?

Emanuel Winston is a commentator and Middle East analyst. His articles appear often on Think-Israel and Gamla. He is a member of the Board of Directors and a research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies (http://www.freeman.org/online.htm). Contact him at gwinston@gwinstonglobal.org

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YOSSI BEILIN: ISRAELIS BEHIND OSLO NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT FUTURE, FINAL AGREEMENT
Posted by Paul Rotenberg, August 28, 2010.

This is mind boggling, but somehow not surprising.

This comes from Dr. Aaron Lerner from IMRA.
Paul

 

"I simply am not prepared to live in a world in which things cannot be resolved"
Yossi Beilin — Interview by Ari Shavit "Yossi removes his glasses" Haaretz Magazine, March 7, 1997

This is my favorite Beilin quote. But for some reason, the English translation of the original interview doesn't seem to be available anywhere on internet — including the Haaretz archive.

With Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu about to fly to Washington it is worthwhile to look back for a moment and consider the astounding revelations from this long forgotten interview (only available in Hebrew in the archives of Haaretz):

The following are translations of some choice excerpts:

Shavit: When you entered the Oslo process, Rabin Peres and you, was it clear to you that this was going to a Palestinian state?

Beilin: No. It is very interesting to note that the talks of the soul regarding "where will this process lead" took place only between the sides, not within them.within the Labor party and within the government and within the negotiating team I don't recall any real and serious discussion of the final solution.

Shavit: I don't understand. In 1992 you were elected to the government. In 1993 you created the Oslo process. At no stage did you ask yourselves where this all was leading to?

Beilin: No.

Shavit: You never spoke with Rabin about the significance of Oslo in the long run?

Beilin: Never.

Shavit: And with Peres?

Beilin: I also never spoke with Peres about it.

Shavit: That's to say that we are going to an historic process that is second to none in its drama and at no stage you don't say "wait a moment, let's think about this", let's check where we are basically going?

Beilin: By Rabin, avoidance of the final arrangement was a kind of policy. He pushed it off. After he died I sat with Leah Rabin and I said to her — if someone could have known what final arrangement Rabin had in mind it's only you. She told me — "Look, I can't tell you. He was very pragmatic, hated to deal with what will be in many more years. He thought about what will be now, very soon. To the best of my knowledge he did not have a very clear picture of what the final arrangement would be"

Rabin thought that things would develop, saw something instrumental like that, some autonomy that might become a state and might not. He did not have a clear picture. .

Shavit: The question that must be raised is if the decisions of Oslo were made at all in a rational process?

Beilin: In general there aren't rational processes. Rationality, at the end, is almost always rationalizing. When you look at these kinds of processes you find that almost always the things happen out of internal feelings of the participants that they are doing the right thing. Out of their emotions and intuition and personal experience.

Shavit: have you considered at times, that maybe, because of 1948, the complications of the dispute make it unsolvable?

Beilin: Yes. It occurs to me. But I immediately utterly rejects it. I see myself as an absolute rationalist and I want to live a rational world. I very much want to live in a world in which there is a solution to our existential problems that is possible. I have no proof that this is indeed the situation. This is like being an optimist. Is an optimist convinced that the pessimist is always wrong? No. He simply convinces himself that things will be good. That it will be OK. And then he also does everything in order to insure that he is right. That's the way I am.

I simply am not prepared to live in a world in which things cannot be resolved.

Paul Rotenberg lives in Toronto, Canada. Contact him at pdr@rogers.com

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OBAMA'S IRANIAN NUCLEAR POLICY A FAILURE
Posted by Jim Kouri, August 28, 2010.
 

"The astonishing fact that Iran has been allowed to progress unimpeded to this point demonstrates that President Obama has been an abject failure in even his most fundamental responsibility of protecting the American people," said Arizona's U.S. Congressman Trent Franks.

Iran's continued pursuit of nuclear capabilities is unacceptable in the eyes of the U.S. government, Navy Adm. Mike Mullen said yesterday, according to an American Forces Press Service report by Army Sergeant First-Class Michael Carden.

"Iran is a particularly difficult issue," Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told local business leaders in Detroit. "Their achieving a nuclear weapon capability is unacceptable and incredibly destabilizing."

"The astonishing fact that Iran has been allowed to progress unimpeded to this point demonstrates that President Obama has been an abject failure in even his most fundamental responsibility of protecting the American people," said Arizona's U.S. Congressman Trent Franks, who serves as a member of the Committee on Armed Services, Strategic Forces Subcommittee, Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee, Military Readiness Subcommittee, Committee on the Judiciary, Constitution Subcommittee.

"It has been obvious for literally years that Iran has every intention of developing a nuclear weapons capability. Indeed, it has been five years since I stood on the floor of the House of Representatives and called for Iran to be referred to the United Nations Security Council. Still, with every new step the Iranian regime has taken toward completing their nuclear weapons program, the Obama Administration has, without fail, cowered on the sidelines, often refusing to enforce even the most rudimentary sanctions, much less sanctions with actual teeth," said Rep. Franks.

"This is an enormous challenge," Admiral Mullen said. "We're working hard to make sure either one of those outcomes doesn't occur, because I think either will be very bad for all of us."

The United States is still pursuing a diplomatic approach, he said. Financial sanctions were placed on Iran in June. Military intervention, the admiral added, is not an option the U.S. military currently wants to engage.

Mullen said there's much the U.S. government doesn't know about Iran. The countries haven't had an open dialogue with each other since 1979, Sgt. Carden noted in a report obtained by the Terrorism Committee of the National Association of Chiefs of Police.

"We don't know each other very well," the admiral said. "You may think you know enough to understand the consequences, but I worry about miscalculation here. I worry about a small incident rolling itself into something that could get out of hand."

Iran's attainment of nuclear weapons would likely lead to a strike against Israel, Mullen said. The Israeli government has a "complete belief" that Iran has that in mind, he added.

"Truly, there is no excuse for having allowed the world's number one state sponsor of terrorism to advance this far in its pursuit of nuclear weapons, just one of which could forever change the face of the world as we know it," said Congressman Franks.

"If Iran successfully builds nuclear weapons — and they are very rapidly hurtling toward that goal — there is no reason to believe those same weapons will not end up in the hands of terrorist organizations, even as so many other Iranian weapons have in the past. Radical Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad even concedes the technology would not remain exclusive to Iran, saying 'Iran is ready to transfer nuclear know-how to other Islamic nations due to their need,'" Franks said.

"I pray President Obama wakes up and finally leads on this issue, for should the apathy and recklessness that have marked his entire Presidency continue, Mr. Obama will go down in history as the President who stood by as the shadow of nuclear terrorism descended upon the world," said Rep. Franks.

"[Iran] is a regime that is a state sponsor of terrorism," Mullen said, noting the Islamic state's links to al-Qaeda and extremist fighters in Iraq and Afghanistan. "It is an existential threat. [Nuclear] capability in hand is an existential threat to Israel."

Mullen said he is hopeful that the issue can be resolved on diplomatic terms. However, ending Iran's nuclear pursuit is a "very difficult and complex problem."

"I think Iran is on path to achieve that capability, and we need to be mindful of that," Mullen said.

Jim Kouri, CPP, is Fifth Vice-President of the National Association of Chiefs of Police (copmagazine@aol.com).

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REFUTING DAVID MALOVSKY'S COMMENTS ON PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY EDUCATION
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 28, 2010.

In his recent article, (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/ content/article/2010/08/23/ AR2010082304204.html), David Makovsky writes:

"The PA has begun reshaping the curriculum of Palestinian institutions that accredit imans, and screening is also being conducted to weed out school teachers who support Hamas radicalism."

Dr. Arnon Groiss, Director of Research for IMPACT-SE — which monitors and translates all Arab educational materials — says that he wishes it were so that the curriculum for imams were being revised. Instead, The PA Ministry of Religious Affairs oversees ten schools that train imams. These schools use 25 texts in different religious subjects that are either published by or for the PA, in Jordan. Bearing the PA logo, they were all originally Jordanian.

As to "weeding out" Hamas-oriented teachers, you miss the point, as if the "radicals" of Hamas will be gone and "moderate" Fatah teachers will remain. Yet it is the PA which has produced these very textbooks used in their schools which themselves promote jihad and praise "martyrs." They completely deny the legitimacy of Israel and reject Jewish roots in the land. There is absolutely no movement in the PA towards revising these books. The PA Minister of Education has repeated her firm commitment not to change the PA school books. Removing Hamas teachers will do very little to change the distorted anti-Israel message received by the students.

Any real movement towards peace requires a re-vamping of these texts wich can be viewed here.

.Arlene Kushner is Senior Policy Analyst, Center for Near East Policy Research Ltd, Beit Agron International Press Centre, 37 Hillel Street, Jerusalem 94581 Israel

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THE NEW WORLD EXPANSION OF HEZBOLLAH
Posted by Susana K-M, August 27, 2010.

This was written by John C. Thompson, the president of the Mackenzie Institute, which studies organized violence and political instability.

 

In the last 15 years, Hezbollah — on its own and as a proxy of Iran — rapidly expanded beyond the Middle East. Its recent entry into the cocaine trade makes it more dangerous yet.

Like al-Qaeda, Hezbollah's ideology seeks the supremacy of Shari"a law and the global exultation of Islam. It seeks to supplant corrupt local governments, destroy Israel and defeat the United States. Hezbollah is capable of cooperating with Sunni terrorists against common enemies.

Although Iran's junior partner, Hezbollah can operate on its own. Given Iranian support and 25 years of frequent clashes with Israel, Hezbollah has more expertise than any other Islamic terrorist group.

Hezbollah is well disciplined and always emphasizes intelligence gathering. Hezbollah's political arm is a major Lebanese party, which lets it operate with impunity inside Lebanon.

It owns its own media services, as was evident in the fabricated "news" that came out of Lebanon in 2006.

Hezbollah draws on charitable donations made by Lebanese Shiites, subsidies from Iran (much reduced for now) and from its own business activities. It has long been involved in organized crime; "taxes" imports into Lebanon and takes a piece of transactions made by Lebanese Shiites abroad.

By 2010, Hezbollah had greatly reinforced its position in South Lebanon and now has more than 60,000 artillery rockets — some with the range to reach southern Israel. They have prepared four "brigades" to capture Israeli border communities. Hezbollah has even drawn hundreds of new recruits from Palestinian groups. The threat it poses is rapidly growing. This makes examining its presence in the Americas even more important.

Lebanon's population is around 4.2 million, but 10 to 11 million Lebanese are strewn around Africa and the Americas. Lebanese were the first Middle Eastern immigrants into North and South America; with some coming as early as the 1870s.

Not being as commercially oriented or as comfortable abroad as Christians and Sunnis, Lebanon's Shiites were slow to follow, but they have come in increasing numbers since the 1970s.

Hezbollah startled the world by bombing the Israeli embassy in Argentina in 1992 and an Argentine synagogue in 1994. Attention was soon drawn to the tri-state area where Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina meet. This area has been home to a lively smuggling industry. In 2000, Paraguayan authorities insisted there were 460 Hezbollah operatives in the region.

Venezuela has 130,000 Lebanese; over half of whom are Muslim. Since Hugo Chavez took power, international cooperation with Venezuelan police over Hezbollah has markedly declined. Chavez has been making overtures to Iran and Hezbollah.

By 2006 Chavez sent 500 men to train in Iran for "Oil Field Security" but he really seeks a large new militia composed of his supporters. The IRGC was eager to help train the new force's cadre. Since March 2007, Iran Air has run a weekly scheduled flight from Tehran to Caracas, a sign of the growing ties between the two governments.

Shiite Islamic Missionaries are hard at work, especially among Wayuu Indians — a tribe with a strong militant tradition whose reserves overlap the Columbian/Venezuelan border. An organization named Autonomia Islamica Wayuu announced its presence in 2007 on a Hezbollah web site.

A March 2008 Colombian raid inside Ecuador killed a senior FARC leader Paul Reyes and captured laptop computers, which detailed involvement in the cocaine industry by senior Ecuadoran and Venezuelan government figures. The ties between Chavez and FARC were confirmed in July 2009 when anti-tank rockets surfaced among FARC guerrillas after having been sold to Venezuela.

After the Colombian government got the upper hand on the narco-guerrillas of FARC in 2008, it became clear that Venezuela and Hezbollah had an increasing role in the cocaine industry.

With the recent slump in oil prices, Hezbollah had seen diminished subsidies from Iran. However, the group is more prosperous than ever and is even picking up the tab for Iranian-backed insurgents in Yemen. Hezbollah is also becoming the world's leading distributor of cocaine.

With its own ships and aircraft, Lebanese government connections and their international alliances, Hezbollah can make hundreds of millions of dollars annually from cocaine.

In March 2009, the DEA chief of operations stated Hezbollah was involved in Mexico's drug cartels. The FBI noticed Hezbollah agents on the US-Mexican border in early 2009. In July 2010, Mexican authorities broke up a Hezbollah network in Tijuana.

Since 1945, 180,000 Lebanese have immigrated into the United States. Shiites now form the majority in some old Lebanese neighbourhoods, which also attract many Palestinian Arabs and are forming radicalized hubs.

Hezbollah uses the US for money raising, technology purchases and recruiting. The Hammoud brothers in North Carolina were a case in point. They shipped low-taxed cigarettes from the tobacco-growing state into Michigan and New York for the black market. Another businessman made illegal bulk purchases of cigarettes from Native smoke-shops in upstate New York and resold them in Detroit. Federal investigators found he had funneled $8 million back to Lebanon.

More modest cases involved grocery stores selling promotional products or condemned and stale-dated goods — with the proceeds going to Hezbollah.

Hezbollah continually plans possible attacks. Since 9/11, there have been hundreds of reports inside the US of hostile surveillance of hospitals, schools, emergency responders, office towers, power plants, refineries and public sites.

James Woolsey, former head of the CIA, told a Senate committee in February 2009 that Hezbollah identified 29 key targets whose destruction would — in the words of Iran's president Ahmadinejad — "end Anglo-Saxon civilization."

Like the United States, Canada has attracted Lebanese immigrants since the 1880s; most were French-speaking Christians until the 1970s.

Canada's 2006 Census found 270,000 Canadians claiming Lebanese origin. The Hezbollah-Israeli clash of that year revealed that 50,000 had returned to Lebanon as dual citizens.

Lebanese Shi"ites came to Canada in the tens of thousands with Hezbollah members among them. Ali Adham Amhaz, Fauzi Ayub, Mohammed Hassan Dbouk, Mohammed Hussein al Husseini and Omar el Sayed are among Canadian residents identified as Hezbollah members in the past. At least one was recruited in Canada. Three purchased high-tech equipment for Hezbollah, two used scams to raise more than $1.3 million for it; another trafficked cocaine and heroin.

One of the five was arrested in Israel travelling on a Canadian passport to position gear for Hezbollah. One produced propaganda material in Lebanon as recently as 2007. At least two gathered intelligence for potential attacks inside Canada.

In 2008, CSIS monitored 20 Hezbollah members from four recently activated sleeper cells inside Canada. These conducted reconnaissance against targets in Canada in response to the February 2008 death of Imad Mugnniyah, Hezbollah's master bomb-maker. After briefly sticking their periscopes up, Hezbollah's Canadian assets have slid underwater again.

Hezbollah is the largest, best trained, best disciplined, best financed and best-armed terrorist group in the world... and they are here.

Contact Susana K-M by email at suanema@gmail.com

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A NEW LOOK AT THE HISTORIC JESUS
Posted by Susana K-M, August 27, 2010.

Can we help him? His name is Leon Zitzer. He wrote a book The Ghost in the Gospels, but it was never published. Please, take a look at his site.Thank you. Shosh

...... "It fits logically with the proof that Jewish leaders were not persecuting Jesus either. They too were helping him and trying to save him from a Roman persecution. There is so much evidence to support all this. Check out my blog and you will get just a hint of what I do".
From: historicaljesusghost.blogspot.com

 

My name is Leon Zitzer. (To contact me, email luckyzee@earthlink.net.) I have an academic background that suits me for research and analytical writing — a B.A. in math (the best training you can get for analytical thinking) from New York University and an M.A. in philosophy from Queens College. I also worked as a paralegal for seven years at the NYS Attorney General's office where I did a lot of legal and factual research among other things.

In the study of history, I am self-trained, though that is not quite accurate since I obviously learned a lot from the authors I've read, and especially from authors in other fields where genuine science is practiced.

I never would have acquired an interest in the historical Jesus had I not found myself in the late 1970s working as a salesperson in sporting goods on the sixth floor of Gimbel's department store right in the middle of Manhattan. Next door was the book department where a young man, who was studying to be a Jehovah Witness, worked. He was always urging me to read the Gospels. Being Jewish, I told him that I was not ready yet but would let him know.

At the time, I was very immersed in learning more about my own religion. I had read the Five Books of Moses several times and was deeply engaged in a couple of rabbinic anthologies (one by C.G. Montefiore and H. Loewe, the other by A. Cohen — both listed in BIBLIOGRAPHY). I had also read probably every book available in English by Martin Buber.

When I felt completely secure in my own Jewishness, I asked my co-worker to get me a copy of the New Testament in Greek and English. I had no plans to become a scholar on this. I just tend to be a somewhat anal guy. When I do something, I like to do it right and learn it from the bottom up. I never learned to drive a car, but at one time, when I thought I was going to, I had to take a course in auto mechanics first. There was no way I was going to get behind the wheel of a car unless I understood how it worked inside and out. You could say my attitude was the same with the Gospels.

My Jehovah Witness co-worker did get me a New Testament as I had requested. I still have it, along with about ten other translations, including William Tyndale's 1534 edition (a revision of his 1526 work, the first English translation of the New Testament that was made from the original Greek and the one that the King James translators substantially retained; Tyndale's love of and genius for accurate translation is my inspiration). My first New Testament was called Diaglott and was published by the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society. It has the English text on one side and Greek on the other with an interlinear, English translation for each Greek word.

We all approach the Gospels with a load of preconceptions. I am no exception. Some we may never lose. No preconception, even if it is right, helps in the study of history. You always want to approach history with as little baggage as possible. Even if an old idea turns out to be right, you will never realize how right it is unless you discover it with fresh eyes. I am still struggling to abandon my preconceptions. It is disturbing what a long and arduous process it is.

But one preconception I lost right away. Before I read the Gospels, what I knew about Jesus was almost all from popular culture — films, TV, magazines, and probably some books. I suppose I had the impression that he was the world's first Christian, pontificating about all kinds of holy wisdom that was antithetical to Judaism. What a shock I got from my very first reading of the Gospels. He was a Jew! And not just a Jew. He was a Jew's Jew! That phrase went through my head because I had recently heard Spencer Tracy described as an actor's actor. So I thought, Yes and Jesus is a Jew's Jew.

The timing was fortunate for me. As I said, I had been studying some excellent anthologies of rabbinic literature. Throughout the Gospels, I kept stopping to catch my breath: I just read that parable in rabbinic literature! I just saw the same or a similar saying in one of my anthologies! It was an incredible shock. I was also struck by how much Jesus reminded me of the Baal Shem Tov, the 18th century founder of modern Hasidic Judaism.

The dilemma that immediately confronted me was how someone so Jewish could have been persecuted by other Jews. That part of the story made no sense. The Gospels were very Jewish books. It was exactly like discovering a lost fragment of the Talmud. There was some anti-Jewishness in the Gospels, but it jarred with the overall picture of Jewishness. Something was wrong.

I have since discovered that there is actually very little anti-Jewishness in the Gospels. They tell (or rather, preserve) a very positive, pro-Jewish story, even regarding the priests of the Jewish Temple. One of the main problems in Gospel scholarship is that we read more anti-Jewishness into the texts than is there. We have been trained by 2,000 years of tradition to do this. The traditional story of Jesus' death and the Gospel story are not the same. It has taken me years to figure it all out.

The other important thing you should know about me is that I am a child of Holocaust survivors. That is a big motivation for me. You should know all about my predispositions. You have the right to know everything about me that can affect my historical investigation. We each come at this from our own point of view. I have different emotional influences and biases than Christian scholars.

Emotions are very important in the search for truth. Nobody is neutral about any of this. Emotions can hide facts or they can be used to light up facts. I think more facts and more light is always preferable. I do not claim my emotions are more holy or more righteous. All I claim is that I can light up a pattern of facts in the Gospels that you have never seen before. I also claim that too many scholars have been erasing these facts.

Emotions may lead us to see this or that fact, but once we put our insights — our assortment of facts — on the table, they can then be objectively examined. I am so confident that I have found the objective truth about how Jesus died, that even when you know all about my predispositions, what I have to say will hold up to any and all tests of logic and historical context.

Obviously, one of the reasons for this Web site is that I have been unable to get my book The Ghost in the Gospels published. I am hoping that the Internet will be a way around this. It is practically impossible to get something published if you have anything rational and historical to say on this subject. The rational approach — studying Jesus/Joshua in his Jewish, historical context — scares the hell out of people, the so-called historical scholars most of all. Even a simple article on Jesus' Jewish teachings (e.g., his repeated references to chutzpah as a valuable way of relating to God) spooks people.

I do not believe in reclaiming Jesus for Judaism. He will always belong to the Christian people. But I do believe in reclaiming the Jewish history of the 1st century for Jews. I aim to correct a historical injustice against Jews. This injustice is not necessary for the Christian religion. I aim to remove all Christian imperialism from the study of Jewish history. In so doing, Christians can reconnect to the original, historical Jesus/Joshua and be reinspired by him.

Contact Susana K-M by email at suanema@gmail.com

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HERE'S WHERE HE RUINED HIS ARGUMENT
Posted by Paul Lademain, August 27, 2010.

Editor's Note: This is Paul Lademain's response to an article written by Ben Dror Yemini entitled "Academic Brainwashing." You can view it here.

 

He lost us when Ben Dror Yemini declaimed " .... Sounds somewhat dubious, but nevertheless it is not a crime to teach about the "Israeli Occupation," and it is even permissible to invent an artificial connection with Western colonization from previous centuries."

Who says bashing Israel has to be a "crime"? It need not be a crime to consider such Saudi-spawned idiocies unacceptable. However, it is dishonorable to speak in the tongue of your avowed antagonists. It is thoroughly self-defeating for an Israeli Jew to mouth the semantics cleverly fashioned by Saudi-funded think-tanks who trained the clever Jews to parrot Islamic semantics. They succeeded in teaching pliable Jews to speak of themselves as if they were foreign squatters on their on lands. To think of your own rightful communities as "settlements" is a mental step in the wrong direction.

One of the ways the British undo Jews is their use of a technique that grafts the bloody history of the English empire and its bloody crimes onto the weakened backs of Jews who have been emotionally educated to accept guilt for crimes committed by others.

Israeli Jews have simply got to put a stop to allowing your antagonists to shape the conversation with their words. For instance, as noted above, you accepted your antagonist's description that reduced you to nothing more than "settlers" on your own land and by using their word to describe yourselves, you are agreeing with the mindset that reduces you to "foreign squatter" on lands that have always belonged to the Jewish Homeland. You most surely will lose all the rest of the smaller and smaller land you stand on if you continue to speak of yourselves with the words set out for you in your antagonists' playbook.

We think this happens most often to Jews who think only in Hebrew and thus have lost their facility to grasp the nuances of the English language. And the English language has managed to get you battened down into unfavorable positions.

Your past leaders toyed with the world by suggesting they were willing to trade your land for peace. Your enemies laughed up their sleeves at such a feckless display. The Islamic world would love nothing more than to crowd every Jew into a smaller and smaller space where Jews can be either cowed into slavery or exterminated with one bomb. And the bomb need not be nuclear if you'll do your enemies the favor of compressing yourselves into a smaller and smaller target.

Jewish leaders who continue to cede Israel's argument by allowing your enemies to define the issues by controlling the words used for daily argument are half-conceding to the dismantling and conquest of Israel.

So stop referring to your own communities as "settlements" — You're not a settlement nor are you settlers, you are a community rightfully establishing yourselves wherever you decide to abide. Moreover, you should by now realize that your past leaders who failed to understand Israel's sovereignty over all the lands recognized and respected as the Jewish Homeland during the Twenties are inadvertently or in some instances deliberately subverting the sovereign rights of the nation of Israel. You can stop this immediately by choosing your words carefully to ensure that they will to serve to re-establish Israel's sovereignty. And you need need to worry whether this exposes you to criticism--there will always be criticism, especially from Jews who think they are displaying their intelligence when they argue endlessly to avoid taking action.

Viva Israel from the SC4Z

Contact Paul Lademain by email at lademain@verizon.net.

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DO NOT TOLERATE THE INTOLERANT
Posted by Susana K-M, August 27, 2010.

"Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed and tolerance with them". ...

 

"We are Americans, each with an equal right to worship and pray where we choose," New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said this week. "There is nowhere in the five boroughs of New York City that is off limits to any religion."

Our founding documents guarantee that — and not just in the five boroughs.

But the unprecedented furor over plans for a mosque complex at Ground Zero tells us there is a coalescing sense that Islam is more than a "mere" religion as non-Muslims conceive of "religion." It is becoming clear to people, despite the gag of political correctness, that there's a reason "Islam" means "submission." Islam not only seeks to order the spiritual realm inhabited by a Muslim and Allah, it lays out a doctrine to control every believer's behavior (down to the most intimate bodily functions) as well as the public life of the collective. Doctrinally, Islam is thus "doubly totalitarian," in the words of G.H. Bousquet, a leading scholar of Islamic law, in accordance with the body of law known as Shariah. Under Shariah, freedom of conscience and freedom of speech are outlawed with extreme sanction (those who leave Islam fear death to this day), while non-Muslims and women exist as legal inferiors to the Muslim man. Meanwhile, jihad — holy war to extend Islamic rule — is a sacred command. And I have the books that prove it.

In other words, this isn't Islam because I say so, but because its sacred, authoritative, mainstream, non-hijacked, untwisted texts say so. It is the religious and political and legal ideology that inspired the al-Qaida killers on 9/11, and it is the religious and political and legal ideology that inspires the mosque complex at Ground Zero. And I didn't come up with that, folks; I just happened to notice, and thought you should know.

The crucial fact is, whether we are brutalized by acts of jihad or confused by acts of dawa (proselytizing), their goal is identical: more Islamic law. And this end will always justify the means as seen, for example, back in 2005 when hundreds of acclaimed Islamic clerics and heads of state gathered in Amman, Jordan. There, quite anti-climactically, they issued the "Amman Message" that declares that no Muslim who adheres to a recognized school of Islam may be labeled an apostate. Subtext: Not even Osama bin Laden could be, in effect, ex-communicated or otherwise blackballed or removed from good standing by these Islamic authorities. One of the 552 signatories was Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf.

Bloomberg types are blind to these things, from the Shariah-spreading efforts of Rauf (noted here last week), to dictates of Shariah that subvert constitutional liberties. So, blindly, they sound platitudes in Islam's defense, plucking emotional chords that resonate with Americans about "liberty," "tolerance" and "religious freedom" on behalf of a belief system that, ultra-ironically, outlaws them all.

Bloomberg actually suggested that a failure to erect the mosque complex would "undermine our soldiers," "our foreign policy objectives" — even "our national security."

"Just as we fought communism by showing the world the power of free markets and free elections," said Bloomberg, "so must we fight terrorism by showing the world the power of religious freedom and cultural tolerance. Freedom and tolerance will always defeat tyranny and terrorism — that is the great lesson of the 20th century, and we must not abandon it here in the 21st."

It almost sounds wonderful — until the froth dries and you remember that fighting tyranny is never as easy as show-and-tell. This is something that victims of the Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc, for example, could explain to the mayor. Freedom and tolerance, regardless of how well they are exemplified, don't have a chance against tyranny and terrorism if they aren't vigilantly protected.

Indeed, tolerance is doomed if it is extended to the intolerant, something philosopher Karl Popper worked out in the last century. "Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed and tolerance with them. ... We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant."

For the sake of the Twin Towers that's a duty.

Contact Susana K-M by email at suanema@gmail.com

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THE REALITY OF NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION
Posted by Andrew McKillop, August 27, 2010.
 

From Big Bangs to Baby Bangs

The fantastic energy liberated by a supernova explosion which is the explosion of a large-sized sun, was called "the most terrifying phenomenon the human mind can imagine", by the philosopher Bertrand Russel. Compared with a supernova, even the most massive hydrogen fusion bombs of the 1960s, built by the Russians and more than 250 times the explosive power of the 1945 Hiroshima fission bomb, were puny things. Explosion of a large star in a supernova event liberates trillions of trillions times more energy than an atom bomb.

The "fathers" of the bomb have been described in written works with titles like Robert Jungk's "Brighter Than A Thousand Suns", published in 1970 and describing the atom scientists who worked to produce the first nuclear weapons, but their handiwork was less than impressive relative to a supernova explosion. The supernova of the year 1054 in the Crab nebula, recorded by Chinese and Japanese astronomers, was easily able to be viewed here on Earth, even in daytime despite it being located about 6500 light years distance from us. Many astronomers think the Crab nebula is a complex of exploded and imploded stars, still expanding at a rate of about 1500 kilometres per second — from an explosion nearly 1000 years ago in our time! Light from the most recent supernovae in our Milky Way galaxy reached Earth from February 1987.

The quest for the Baby Bang of atomic weapons has however occupied political and military leaderships, in many countries, since the basic technical concept of atomic fission explosion devices was first known and described, in the 1930s. Even at the time, rivalry and competition between the "atom scientists" of the time for prestige and honours, and well funded labs was so strong that by the start of World War II the potential for atomic weapons was very well known, at least among political decider elites. As books like Jungk's book cited above explain and describe, the urge to produce atomic weapons was strong and widely spread in the academic, scientific and military technology circles of the late 1930s.

This is more than 70 years ago. Since that time there has been a vast "democratization" of nuclear energy, and therefore the capability to make atomic weapons. What is apparently not well understood, or is "not wanted information" is that the first atomic bombmaking dates from a long time before colour TV and pop-up toasters. It dates from an era in which the US automobile industry — a prime source of industrial technology for the Manhattan Project engineers working under Enrico Fermi to make the USA's first bomb — was still heavily using wood, animal skins, cat gut, vegetable glues, cast iron, piano wire, tin smithing and a large range of other very artisanal raw materials and handicraft techniques. To be sure, this in no way means that producing a functional atomic explosive device is possible "with just two turns of a screwdriver", but is today vastly easier than 65 years ago.

The Dangerous Belief that "Atom Secrets" Still Exist

Many Internet sites, the press and media, and political leaders in some leading countries seek to maintain the myth of "atom secrets" held by a very select few countries and principally the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council, which by no coincidence are also the 5 earliest countries to have developed, tested and used (in the case of the USA) atomic weapons, before moving on to their industrial production. These "declared nuclear powers", in their rush to firstly develop the fission or atomic bomb, then the fusion or hydrogen bomb, themselves repeatedly made use of so-called "atom spies". Today however they seek to maintain the myth that spies, organized crime syndicates, rogue governments, greedy industrialiking to spread and use the "atom secrets", that only they invented and they still own.

These secrets, we are asked to believe, can enable almost anybody to make the bomb in their garage with just a couple of screwdriver turns. To some, Dr A Q Khan, AKA "Bombs R Us" or the Father of the Islamic Bomb, would have been completely unable to develop an atomic bomb in Pakistan without the use of "atom secrets".The same highly outdated or antique thinking applies to Iran's scientific and industrial capabilities for producing an atomic bomb, despite the fact that the 1941-1945 Manhattan Project to produce the USA's and the world's first atom bombs was carried out using the scientific knowledge and industrial capacities of more than 65 years ago.

A totally opposite theory about atomic bomb making is that nuclear physicists, weapons research experts, industrial engineers and their enablers and bosses in government have been able to "Do It Themselves" since the 1960s, that is for a minimum of 45 years. Further upstream, the scientific concept of supernovae, the biggest possible nuclear Big Bang, dates a lot further back — to the 1920s, and is basically due to the Indian atomic scientist and friend of Einstein, Satyendranath Bose. By the 1930s, as noted above and although dominated by scientists from the USA, Europe, Russia and Japan, the field of nuclear and atomic physics was already highly internationalized.

The early "core competence" countries for nuclear weapons, the USA and the other 4 members of the UN Security Council (Russia, UK, China, France) reached the status of bomb capable and immediately translated that to industrial scale atomic weapons making, from the late 1940s, through the 1950s and into the early 1960s. All of these countries argue they did not need to steal "atom secrets" from anybody at all, despite the proof of atom spying to the contrary. This claimed capability for "Doing It Themselves" is to be sure linked with concepts of national pride and national superiority, or even racial superiority, and exactly the same quest for national pride applies to all subsequent national programmes for atomic bomb making.

Fermi's first "plutonium brewing" reactor of a few dozen kiloWatts power, built underneath a New York football stadium in 1941, with ultra flimsy radiation protection for its workers and engineers due to ignorance of radiation dangers, would very surely have only elicited a contemptuous smirk from Dr A Q Khan, 40 years ago in 1970. Or from Indian atomic weapons engineer even further back, in the 1960s, let alone those in Israel, North Korea or South Africa. The US Little Boy and Fat Man bomb technology was truly artisanal and antique relative to the industrial technology utilised worldwide, today, such as computer controlled machine tools and IT. Manhattan Project tech was so Low Tech it has no interest at all for Iran's suspected bomb engineers of today, or for those in a string of countries who will be weapons enabled by the The Nuclear Renaissance of 2010-2020.

The New Dangers of Nuclear Proliferation

We can argue that for over 40 years, since about 1965, making a fission bomb requires no special art of "atom spying" and no special help from the Men in Black. Fast increasing numbers of reactors, and fuel processing, waste handling and related parts of the nuclear power system, worldwide, will continue to make this even easier.

The story of bomb proliferation is a lot less James Bond reader friendly than many persons like to imagine. Conversely the story of nuclear proliferation is a lot closer to us and more frightening, when we understand the real implications of massively increasing civil power reactor orders, many or most of them in the Emerging and developing countries of the South, in what the nuclear industry calls "The Nuclear Renaissance". In certain ways, the continuing attempt by many persons — including most OECD political leaders — to maintain the popular myth of "atom secrets" is a dangerous side issue and shows "time warp" thinking: to be sure there were atom secrets, like Elvis Presley golden discs, but not in a real and practical sense for at least the last 40-45 years.

What concerns us today is that neither history nor technology stopped there, 65 years ago. From the late 1940s onwards, the postwar economic boom and the Cold War both massively accelerated and democratized atomic weapons. It is something of a surprise, today, that the poorly informed general public, despite its ability to twiddle an iPhone using "under the hood" technology based on quantum physics, is asked to go on believing that atom bombs are "Hi Tech". In fact the earliest and most basic atom bomb technology dates from the age when cars were built with piano wire and plywood.

When the atom business shifted from the quantities and volumes of deadly radioactive materials needed only to build a few hundred atom bombs every year, to the 68 000 tons of uranium a year needed to run the 439 civil nuclear reactors that supply 373 000 MW today in 2010, it also totally democratized atomic weapons. Today's production of plutonium in these 439 civil power reactors (ignoring the world's 200-odd research and military reactors) is about 20-22.5 tonnes per year. By the year 2020, if the announced "Nuclear Renaissance" takes place, about 120 000 tons of year of uranium will needed for the world's 550-650 civil reactors, raising annual plutonium production to at least 35 tones per year.

While the 1945 Fat Man bomb with an explosive equivalent of about 15 000 tons TNT needed more than 10 kilograms of plutonium, Dr A. Q. Khan was able to deliver almost as much, 12 000 tons TNT equivalent in 1998, with only 4 kilograms of plutonium. MIRV-type atomic warheads on Trident-type submarine based launchers utilise even less plutonium for the same explosive potential. We can imagine how many "Hiroshima equivalent" bombs can be manufactured with around 22 tonnes per year of plutonium!

Rather few, or no "atom secrets" at all are needed to produce the cheaper and quicker alternative of "recycling" nuclear wastes as Depleted Uranium weapons such as anti-tank and anti-building shells and missiles. About 1700 tonnes of these highly carcinogenic weapons were used by the USA and its allies in the 1991 Gulf war against Iraq.

Even less in the way of "atom secrets" is needed to attack and destroy a large-sized civil nuclear reactor, fuel fabrication plant or plutonium repository, using totally conventional military weapons, sabotage or terrorist attack. Whatever the exciting "atom secrets" of 50 or 60 years ago, still worked today by paperback writers and TV docu-drama producers, the real world of today needs none at all. It has fast-growing numbers of atomic Doomsday Weapons to hand, primed and available round the clock, every day and every night.

Contact Andrew McKillop by email at xtran9@gmail.com

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NETANYAHU IS BAD FOR ISRAEL. YOU DON'T NEGOTIATE YOUR HOMELAND
Posted by Ted Belman, August 27, 2010.
This was written by Gary Cooperberg and was published today on the Project Shofar website
http://projectshofar.org/2010/08/26/ netanyahu-is-bad-for-israel/
 

Israel is not a piece of real estate that is ours to sell bargain or give away. Our enemies have no trouble telling the world that they cannot negotiate their homelands as it would go against their religion. Yet the Jewish State has never made such a claim, even though our claim is far more justified than theirs.

What is worse is the fact that a small band of Arab squatters from foreign Arab countries are living in Israel and claiming that it always belonged to them. They have created fact from fiction and succeeded beyond all reasonable expectations. The PLO has spent the last forty years murdering Jews and declaring their intention to establish a new Arab state upon the present Jewish one. Rather than simply obliterate this blight from our soil, our own leaders have decided to try to accommodate it!

The Jewish government has created absurd axioms which make it nearly impossible for Jewish life to continue in the Jewish State. It has arbitrarily declared that we have no choice but to include Arabs, who seek our destruction from within, as legitimate citizens of the Jewish State including representation in our Knesset. We have recently seen how one such Knesset Member actually participated in the attack upon our soldiers in the flotilla incident. When her Knesset privileges were partially restricted she responded by declaring that she was simply representing the Arabs who voted for her! She is right and we are stupid. She should not have had her privileges restricted. She should have been hanged for treason! But that would never happen in Israel as someone might think it was racially motivated.

The fact is that our government is racially prejudiced. It prefers to tolerate murder and terror, as well as allow our enemies to work from within our own government to destroy the Jewish State only because it is afraid of being labeled racist! That very fact shows that they are, indeed, racist. But worse than that, they are participants in the effort to destroy the Jewish State even as they declare that they are working for peace.

Netanyahu is either a liar or a self deceiver. His clever ploys of negotiations and "reciprocity" will never bring peace. It will only help our enemies to destroy us with our consent. The PLO has no right to any part of the Land of Israel. And the government of Israel has no right to give away any part of the Land of Israel. All this alleged "peace" process can ever hope to accomplish is to destroy the Jewish homeland. Thus the very willingness on the part of the Jewish government to participate in such negotiations, much less demand them, is an outright act of treason.

Our so-called "peace partners" are out and out terrorists! One does not negotiate with terror... he uproots and destroys it before it destroys him.

Ted Belman is a Canadian lawyer and editor of the IsraPundit.com website, an activist pro-Israel website. He lives in Jerusalem. Contact him at tedbel@rogers.com

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FROM ISRAEL: THE GOOD FIGHT
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 26, 2010.
 

That's what we — Israelis and all those who love Israel — must take on. The situation is enough to make one tear one's hair out. But the antidote is hard work to combat the threats and the insanity.

~~~~~~~~~

Let's begin with a piece on the dangers of the US training of PA security forces, which I wrote with David Bedein, and which has now been put up in the JPost. It is exceedingly relevant with regard to current prospects for "peace negotiations" and the issue of demilitarization of a Palestinian state.

There is considerable evidence that the PA forces, no matter how trained, will not reliably take on Hamas. What is more, there is genuine concern that these forces might in time actually turn on Israel.
http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/ Op-EdContributors/Article.aspx? id=185979

~~~~~~~~~~

I spoke yesterday about contacting your elected officials in Congress regarding incitement in PA textbooks.

The issue of the US training of PA forces is yet another one about which they are lacking information. In the main, they have been told that this training is going swimmingly well. Anyone seeking more information, after reading the article, is invited to contact me.

For your Congresspersons:
http://www.house.gov/house/ MemberWWW_by_State.shtml

For your Senators:
http://www.senate.gov/general/ contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

~~~~~~~~~~

Please see an excellent "tell-it-like-it-is" article by Khaled Abu Toameh, writing in Hudson-NY: "Abbas & Fayyad: Do They Have a Mandate?"

The answer, of course, is that they do not. Says Abu Toameh:

"A president whose term in office expired a long time ago, and a prime minister who won about 2% of the vote when he ran in an election, have now been invited by the US Administration to hold direct peace talks with Israel on behalf of the Palestinians.

"...The 18-member PLO Executive Committee, which met in Ramallah last week to approve the Palestinians' participation in the direct talks with Israel, is dominated by unelected veteran officials.

"Only nine PLO officials attended the meeting. The PLO constitution requires a minimum of 12 members for a quorum. This means that, contrary to reports in the Palestinian and international media, Abbas and Fayyad do not have the support of the PLO committee to negotiate directly with Israel.

"With regards to the Central Council of Fatah, it remains unclear whether its 21 members ever endorsed the US invitation to hold direct talks with Israel.

"So here is a president whose term in office expired in January 2009 — and who has won the backing of only some of his traditional loyalists — preparing to negotiate with Israel about extremely important issues such as borders, refugees, Jerusalem, settlements and security.

"As if it is not enough that Abbas and Fayyad do not have a real mandate from their people, now they are going to lose what is left of their credibility as they appear to have "succumbed" to the outside pressure.

"...Over the past few months, Abbas and Fayyad had been telling their people that there would be no direct talks with Israel unless their conditions are fulfilled. Now, however, they...and are being pressured to the negotiating table by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

"...How can any Palestinian buy an agreement from them after they told their people that they are going to the talks only because the Americans and Europeans threatened to cut off financial aid?

"Any agreement Abbas and Fayyad bring back home will be seen by many Palestinians as the fruit of 'extortion' and 'threats' and not as the result of peace talks that were conducted in good faith.

"Leaders who do not have a clear mandate from their people will not be able to strike any deal with Israel, particularly when it concerns explosive issues such as Jerusalem, refugees and settlements...

"Abbas and Fayyad are nonetheless not stupid. The two are well aware of the fact that they do not have a mandate to sign any agreement with Israel. This is why they will search for any excuse to withdraw from the direct talks and blame Israel for the failure of the peace process."
www.hudson-ny.org/1502/ abbas-fayyad-mandate

~~~~~~~~~~

For a taste of PA intransigence, it would be hard to beat this. The PA cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Fayyad met, reports WAFA (the PLO news agency,) and approved the decision to go ahead with negotiations, based on the Quartet statement.

The full cabinet statement included condemnation of all Israeli "violations." Included was condemnation of "the settlements' plans in East Jerusalem such as building a huge elevator system which connects the Jewish square in East Jerusalem's Old City' and the western wall."

Of course it is nonsense to call these "the settlement's plans" — this phrase is meaningless. But there is talk (by the Municipality? a ministry? not sure) about putting in an elevator between the Jewish Quarter (the Rova) and the plaza in front of the Kotel. Anyone who has been there knows what a huge set of steps there is between the two — steps that inhibit movement for the elderly or disabled. What a lovely thing this would be.

~~~~~~~~~~

One particular e-mail has been forwarded to me in recent days more frequently than any other e-mail I've ever received. I've been astonished at the frequency with which it has come into my In-box.

The e-mail I'm referring to says at the top something like "Can you guess where these pictures were taken?" Then after a string of some 20 or more pictures, the "answer" is provided: "Gaza."

The problem is that there is no person's name attached to this, no organization or site. No identification that might be used to confirm what is being said. And, quite simply, there is no way to know if these really are pictures of Gaza. I myself, and some others I consulted with, have some doubts.

The idea, of course, is to show how luxurious Gaza is, even as there are claims of suffering there. Certainly I know Gaza in its totality is not as dreary, as slum-like and down-and-out as some would have us believe. And I have readily shared pictures of a Gaza market filled with goods, the new swimming pool and more. But in all of these instances I confirmed their validity.

What it seemed to me is that some of the pictures in this sequence were from Gaza, while others — of the more 'glitzy' and upscale buildings — seemed likely not.

And yet, thousands upon thousands of people are accepting this as a given veracity. One of the dangers of the Internet.

My advice, across the board, is not to share material unless it can be validated and confirmed. There is enough legitimate material that can be confirmed to combat the lies coming from the other side without relying upon what is dubious and may be fallacious. Our integrity in fighting that good fight depends upon our reliability as we present information. If we are not careful, we can — inadvertently and unintentionally — undermine our own case

~~~~~~~~~~

"The Good News Corner"

Certain parts of the country are currently adrift in storks, and will be for some time yet.

Israel is the crossroads for many birds in migration, and right now it's stork migration time, with the birds heading south. At the moment, at the height of the migration, some 31,000 storks are in the south. They flew over the Beit She'an valley and then landed in the Negev, where they will rest before continuing on to east Africa for the winter. By the end of the migration, which takes six weeks, some 350,000 storks will have been in Israel. This is an annual event.

When the birds were expected over the Beit She'an area, experts from the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel advised farmers to plow their fields to uncover rodents so the birds could prey on them — thereby benefiting both birds and farmers.

The SPNI, working with the Air Force, is monitoring the flight of these birds, which can cause a hazard if they collide with air craft.

Incredibly, all of the various species of birds who will migrate over Israel this fall and winter will total 500 million.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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THE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE & THE WAR OF IDEAS
Posted by Frank Salvato, August 26, 2010.
 

The controversy surrounding the Park 51/Cordoba House project — promoted by the Cordoba Initiative and headed by Feisal Abdul Rauf — is one that illustrates the full range of the ideological clash between the Islamic culture and the culture of the West. Whether Liberals, Progressives and apologists care to admit it or not the fundamentalist Islamist factions of the Arab world are actively attempting to advance their influence on the world; in every nation and every culture. In their attempt at establishing an elevated influence around the world this fundamentalist faction seeks not to be accepted as equals or to assimilate, but to enter into foreign cultures as a privileged and exempt class. The issue of the Park 51 Project — from this point forward referred to by its original label, the Cordoba House — is a perfect example of one particular battle theater in this culture clash: the war of ideas.

The West's current conflict with expanding fundamentalist Islam is taking place on four different fronts, at least at the hand of the Islamists: militarily, diplomatically, economically and ideologically.

Militarily, the West is fully engaged on the internationally recognized battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan and, to a lesser extent in the undefined battle theaters around the world, and especially throughout the Middle East, the Asian South Pacific, Africa and most recently, South America.

Of course, many experts maintain that the West's engagement is an effort hamstrung by political correctness, a disingenuous Progressive-minded Western media and leaders who insist on telegraphing our intentions to the enemy in the form of timetables for withdrawal and openly stated standard operating procedures for our armed forces while maintaining unreasonable expectations that the enemy operates with any genuine wont for honest dialogue in the pursuit of conflict resolution.

Diplomatically, the West is again engaged, most notably in the form of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, which has continued to be a failed effort from the onset and which has witnessed a slow but steady encroachment of fundamentalist Islam onto sovereign Israeli territory.

This effort, along with the misguided efforts suggested by Progressives and anti-war activists that Western powers should enter into negotiations with Taliban and al Qaeda leaders in Afghanistan and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan, not only ignores the basic Wahabbist tenet of al taqiyya, but its allows fundamentalist Islamists to exploit the trust of a fickle Western leadership.

Economically, we are seeing advances into the Western culture by fundamentalist Islamists in the form of a budding effort to establish Sharia compliant financial institutions and instruments. By establishing these ideologically exclusive institutions and instruments fundamentalist Islamists create a self-sufficient entity within the framework of the Western Capitalist system. As the Sharia compliant financial structure grows and consumes, it will begin to sap many opportunities for investment from the Western financial markets, ultimately creating an "us against them" global financial structure. When one takes into account that OPEC could very well decide to exclusively engage a Sharia compliant financial system, the full financial threat to the global economy can be fully realized (I suggest researching the writings of Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld on this matter).

That brings us to the front most applicable to the issue surrounding the Cordoba House, the Cordoba Initiative and Feisal Abdul Rauf: the ideological battle front.

Fundamentalist Islamists are experts at exploiting the multicultural political correctness so prevalent in the West. On the military, diplomatic and economic battlefields they use propaganda, human shields, deception, exclusion and in many cases our own legal systems in their pursuit of attaining their goals, and in particular, the goal of establishing a global Islamic caliphate existing under Sharia law. But they are also exploiting the political correctness component of the Western culture to advance fundamentalist Islam societally, through means other than the legislative or diplomatic processes.

Two examples of just such exploitation of the debilitating multicultural, politically correct mindset of the West can be found in southern Lebanon in the advancement of Hezbollah in that once Christian nation, and in Israel with the ceding of the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinian authority, al Fatah and Hamas.

In southern Lebanon, Hezbollah, an organization created by the Shi'ite mullahs of the Iranian Islamist Revolution of 1979 — the same wonderful people who oppress the native Iranian Persians, who created the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and who routinely call for the extinguishment of Israel as a nation and the Jews as a people — has gained legitimacy by encroaching societally, not unlike how the mobster Al Capone gained popular influence in 1920s Chicago.

With a government financially and logistically unable to meet the needs of the poor, Capone used his access to an obscene wealth of ill-gotten gains to establish soup kitchens and charity initiatives for the poor; those affected by the trying financial times of 1920s America. This endeared him to the citizenry and discouraged elected officials in Chicago from pursuing him for his criminal enterprise enabling him to become one of the wealthiest and influential people in the United States.

Using the same tactic of catering to the downtrodden and disenfranchised, Hezbollah morphed from a bloodthirsty Shi'ite terrorist organization to a politically legitimized faction of government in Lebanon. By using funds supplied by Iran, Syria and non-state entities sympathetic to the fundamentalist Islamist cause, Hezbollah constructed schools and hospitals in southern Lebanon, infused finances into the fragile infrastructure and, essentially, bribed the people of southern Lebanon into voting them into elected office and, thus legitimacy.

Through the advancement of influence via the exploitation of the poor in southern Lebanon, Hezbollah was able to buy political legitimacy on the world stage, even as they continued to exist and operate, simultaneously, as a potent terrorist organization around the world.

With the Israeli-Palestinian issue, the situation is the same only different.

The question must be asked, when did Israel as a government enable the legitimization of the Palestinian Authority? It did so when it first sat down with the PLO and Yassir Arafat to "talk," or "negotiate."

In a piece titled "A Brief History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict" Nancy Salvato writes:

"...Arab states allowed Palestinian resistance groups, organized in l964 by the Arab League into the Palestine Liberation Organization (the PLO), to use their territory to launch raids against Israel. The stated goal of the PLO was to use armed struggle to establish an independent Palestinian state.

"In l973, on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year, Israelis were caught off guard when Egypt attacked Israeli troops, stationed in the Sinai Peninsula and Syria attacked Israeli forces in the Golan Heights. After heavy casualties, the Israeli army eventually began to win the war. The Soviet Union and United States pressured Israel to accept a UN cease-fire. Henry Kissinger brokered agreements with Israel and Syria and between Israel's Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egypt's President Anwar Sadat.

"Ironically, [shortly before his death], Palestinian leader Yassir Arafat rejected an offer of a Palestinian state in the areas of Israeli withdrawal (brokered by the Clinton administration) and proposed by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak. [An]... intifada against Israel erupted, and there have been no substantive negotiations since then. Arafat's...demise offered hope that his successor, Mahmoud Abbas, would be a real negotiating partner for Israel. But he has been unable to control Palestinian militants, and now his party has lost control of the Palestinian parliament to the radical, militant, terrorism-supporting Hamas in the ...Gaza Strip."

In sitting down at the table with the Palestinians to "engage," the Israeli government lent them the full force of their credibility and legitimacy in the Western world. From there, the United Nations recognized Israel's bestowed legitimacy upon the PA, and so did the US, Russia, Europe, and so on and so on...soon, the PLO, al Fatah, Hamas, etc. also became recognized as entities, legitimate or not, as the case may be, but entities that had to be "dealt with" and even "talked to" or engaged, nevertheless.

The result of the initial recognition and the perceived need to "engage on equal ground," facilitated the legitimization of encroaching fundamentalist and radical Islamist entities complete with a "right" to have their voices heard; as being as potent and legitimate as the elected government of a nation state. It allowed an encroaching fundamentalist Islamist faction to, in the end, demand capitulation to their demands for Gaza and the West Bank, leading to their current demands that they be allowed to annex more Israeli land, that Israel cease the building of settlements on its sovereign soil and even for Israel to reconcile to East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capitol.

It is tantamount to "squatter's rights" only on an international stage.

With regard to the Cordoba House issue, perhaps it would be legitimate to ask:

Can't the illegitimate "legitimization" tactic be applied to the fundamentalist and radical Islamist elements — Feisal Abdul Rauf and his cadre of activists and operatives — currently provoking dialogue over the Ground Zero mosque?

Aren't the Islamist factions promoting the Cordoba House project simply using the same tactics as the Palestinians did against the nation of Israel and Hezbollah did in southern Lebanon to establish the exact precedent of legitimization?

Can this issue of the Cordoba House be accurately depicted and explained as a pro-fundamental Islamist/pro-Sharia "attack," via the "legitimization" tactic, in the ideological war (or war of ideas) between fundamentalist Islam and the West?

We in the West have to abort the notion that we are dealing with an ingenuous culture in the culture of fundamentalist Islam. These ideologues have proven time and time again that they will use any means necessary — military, economic, diplomatic and ideological — to attain their goal of a Sharia compliant world, ruled under an Islamist caliphate. If we do not resign ourselves to these truths we in the West are doomed to be ruled by the most oppressive, totalitarian and violently brutal ideology to exist in the history of the world. [emphasis added]

Frank Salvato is the Executive Director and Director of Terrorism Research for BasicsProject.org a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education initiative Contact him by email at contact@newmediajournal.us

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MIDDLE EAST SANDSTORMS AND TUMBLEWEEDS
Posted by Yoram Ettinger, August 26, 2010.
 

The US evacuation of Iraq and the 2011 expected evacuation of Afghanistan — and President Obama's preoccupation with the Palestinian issue — remind me of the Texas colloquialism: "When you're smothered by a West Texas sandstorm, don't be preoccupied with the tumbleweeds."

In the beginning of 1990, President Bush believed in the New World Order theory, and pursued engagement with — and not defeat of — Saddam Hussein. He considered the Palestinian issue as the root cause of Middle East turbulence, and therefore pressured Prime Minister Shamir for sweeping concessions. However, Saddam's invasion of Kuwait in 1990 exposed the fallacy of "The New Middle East" and "The New World Order," sucking the US into a costly, bloody and prolonged quagmire.

In 2010, President Obama believes that the USA should act within international consensus, aspiring to bring rogue regimes to the table rather than bringing them to submission. He defines the Palestinian issue as the crux of Middle East violence, and therefore pressures Prime Minister Netanyahu for further groundbreaking concessions.

However, in 2010, Middle East sandstorms are growing increasingly lethal and put the Palestinian issue in perspective — a secondary priority for Arab regimes. They highlight fundamental features of inter-Muslim/Arab politics, which clarify that US relations with Israel and with Arab countries are not a "Zero Sum Game." Middle East sandstorms accentuate special security requirements, which result from the tempestuous nature of the region and underline the critical role played by the US posture of deterrence in bolstering regional and global sanity and stability. Intensifying Middle East uncertainty and volatility also reaffirm Israel's unique strategic features and highlight the growing potential of the mutually-beneficial US-Israel strategic cooperation.

Irrespective of the Palestinian issue, the Arab-Israeli conflict and Israel's existence, the US is evacuating Iraq and will evacuate Afghanistan, while Iran is going nuclear — a nightmare for Persian Gulf, Middle East and global leaders. Iraq's evacuation will destabilize the country, advance Iran's posture and destabilize Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other Gulf States. Furthermore, the Saudi-Yemen border is boiling; inter-Muslim terrorism proliferates; post-Mubarak Egypt could follow the anti-US Turkish or even Iranian path; the Sudan and the Horn of Africa are saturated with conflicts; the Islamization of Turkey's policy fosters regional radicalization and Lebanon remains a target for a Syrian takeover and an arena for violent inter-Arab conflicts. Additional intra-Muslim conflicts hemorrhage the region, facilitating Russian, Chinese and North Korean penetration of the region. None of the above is impacted by the Israeli-Palestinian negotiation!

These conflicts shed light on 1,300 year old fundamental features of inter-Muslim/Arab reality: Islamic supremacy; autocracy/tyranny; violence as a norm to resolve conflicts and secure power; regime-change through the bullet and not through the ballot; sectarian, religious, ethnic, tribal and ideological violent conflicts; corruption; fragmentation; instability of regimes and alignments; volatility in shifts from peace to war and from conclusion to violation of agreements. For instance, in 1969 and 1979, Libya and Iran were transformed via revolution from pro-US to anti-USA regimes. In 1980 and in 1990, Iraq abrogated peace accords, invading Iran and Kuwait. In 1990, pro-USA King Hussein collaborated with Saddam's invasion of Kuwait. In 1993, the Oslo Accords were concluded and summarily violated by an unprecedented wave of Palestinian hate-education and terrorism. In 2002, pro-USA Turkey switched over to the anti-USA, pro-Iran, pro-Syria, pro-Hezbollah and pro-Hamas camp. In 2003, a radical regime was trounced in Baghdad, but in 2011 Baghdad could become an active volcano, spreading lava throughout the region.

The evacuation of Iraq turns attention to the exceptionally high security threshold required by Israel, resulting from the unpredictable, unstable, violent and volatile nature of the region and its regimes. The more thorough the US evacuation, the higher the level of threat and uncertainty, and therefore the deeper the security significance of the Judea & Samaria mountain ridges — the "Golan Heights" protecting Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and the 9-15 mile sliver of Israel along the Mediterranean.

The security, stability and sanity of the Middle East depend upon American determination and deterrence. The evacuation of Iraq, without bringing terrorism to submission — along with hesitant USA policy toward Iran and North Korea — are perceived by rivals and enemies of the USA as lack of endurance, which was demonstrated by the US flight from Vietnam (1973), Beirut (1983) and Somalia (1993). It undermines the USA posture of deterrence and pumps adrenalin into the veins of terrorists.

The lower the military profile of the USA and the more volcanic the Middle East, the higher the added-value of the Jewish State as a credible, stable, battle-proven and democratic ally of the USA. Israel is endowed with unique capabilities, which have benefited the US in the areas of intelligence (sharing with the USA more intelligence than all NATO countries combined), defense-industrial Research & Development, manufacturing, refurbishing and exports (promoting US military systems and providing the US with the largest battle-proven laboratory), counter-terrorism (sharing with the US Israel's unique experience) and operations (foiling coups in Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, destroying Iraq's nuclear reactor and Syria's nuclear plant, deterring rogue regimes, upgrading battle tactics, etc.). Such unique Israeli potential becomes doubly pertinent in face of the expected 2011-2012 Middle East sandstorms.

US-Israel mutual interests behoove a dramatically enhanced strategic cooperation, focusing on the larger Middle East and global context — and not on the narrower Palestinian context — which is critical to dire economic and security concerns of the US, Israel and the Free World.

Ambassador Yoram Ettinger is a consultant on US-Israel relations as well as the Chairman of Special Projects at the Ariel Center for Policy Research. Formerly the Minister for Congressional Affairs to Israel's Embassy in Washington, DC, Ettinger also served as Consul General of Israel to the Southwestern US. He is a former editor of Contemporary Mideast Backgrounder, and is the author of the Jerusalem Cloakroom series of reports. Contact him at yoramtex@netvision.net.il and visit the website: http://www.theettingerreport.co.il

This article is archived at
www.ynetnews.com/articles/ 0,7340,L-3943768,00.html

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FROM ISRAEL: FLIPPANT TO FURIOUS
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 25, 2010.
 

Yesterday it was easy to allow myself a touch of flippancy in writing my post. Perhaps a way of mocking occurrences; certainly a way for me to handle their insanity.

Today, there is only a slow, deep fury:

A "senior American official" here in Jerusalem — apparently the same one I cited yesterday as saying that both sides are ready to negotiate — is being quoted as also having said that "the US administration expects that neither side will take any measure to poison the atmosphere or derail the talks."

All this talk by Clinton about how the US is extending the invitation for Netanyahu and Abbas to come to Washington to talk, "without preconditions," was predictably just that: talk. Of course what the "official" is saying constitutes the imposition of "preconditions."

And, I might add, while he speaks of "both sides," it is Israel he is referring to. Why? Because it is only the PA that says, "If Israel does thus and such we'll not be at the table." Our eager prime minister, in contrast, declares, "I've been waiting for these talks to begin, this is great." Period.

~~~~~~~~~~

If I were in charge of our government's response, I'd say something like this:

"I so want to start talks. But I want them to really succeed. And we all know, for them to succeed, the Palestinian people must be prepared for peace. But this hasn't happened. To this very day, the young people in the PA schools are being taught that jihad is praiseworthy. We cannot come to the table until we have solid evidence that the PA textbooks are being republished with all of the incitement excised. Mr. Abbas needs to know: He can have incitement or negotiations, but not both."

~~~~~~~~~~

Then at a press conference I would provide samples — in the original Arabic, and translated to English — from textbooks produced and used by the Palestinian Authority. Samples such as these:

Reading and Texts, Grade 8, part 2, page 16:

"Your enemies seek life and you seek death...

"These drops of blood that flow from your bodies will be transformed into red fiery shooting stars that will come down on the heads of your enemies."

From Our Beautiful Language, Grade 7, Part 1, p. 97. A section from a poem, called "The Martyr" that is to be studied:

"I shall carry my soul in my palm

"And toss it into the abyss of destruction

"...Hearing [weapons'] clash is pleasant to my ear

"And the flow of blood gladdens my soul."

This material can be found at:
www.impact-se.org/research/pa/archives/oldindex.html — the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education.

~~~~~~~~~~

Netanyahu may not raise this issue with Obama. More's the pity.

But each of you can raise it with your elected representatives in Congress. Please share one or both of these poems with them, and implore them to do everything in their power to stop President Obama from leaning on Israel with regard to concessions so that PA president Abbas will come to the negotiating table. Explain that Abbas is not a legitimate partner for peace, and that it does Israel a severe injustice to apply pressure.

For your Congresspersons:
http://www.house.gov/house/ MemberWWW_by_State.shtml

For your Senators:
http://www.senate.gov/general/ contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

~~~~~~~~~~

If you really want to help, write letters to the editor and call in to talk shows as well. Expose the hypocrisy of the PA, via these poems, and the unfairness of putting pressure on Israel.

~~~~~~~~~~

There is yet another source of fury that has been exposed. And in this case my anger is directed at my own government. According to an AP report carried by YNET:

"Israeli officials confirmed...that the government is in quiet talks with the United States in search of a 'creative' solution that will allow at least some limited construction to take place after Israel's 10-month moratorium ends on Sept. 26.

"The officials said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is well aware of the high stakes ahead of the September 2 date marked for the launching of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

"'Many options are being discussed. It's not that simple,' said Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor."

~~~~~~~~~~

"Allow at least some limited construction to take place...after the moratorium ends"? How shall I describe this? Disgusting? Shameful? We are going to take instruction from Obama's government with regard to where we can build?

Precisely where is the quid pro quo here? What are we going to get for all of this "cooperation" and loss of integrity? More demands, more loss of control, is what we'll get.

~~~~~~~~~~

The PA has begun its counter-attack with regard to preconditions. Saeb Erekat is now charging that we have put out our own list of preconditions, demanding forces in the Jordan, a united Jerusalem, and recognition as a Jewish state.

I would like to clarify this, because he is misrepresenting. A precondition means, "I won't talk to you unless..." The PA is saying they won't meet with us unless we freeze construction in settlements. They won't sit down at the table.

We have said nothing of the sort. For better or worse, we are saying, "Sure, we'll sit down. No demands of you up front. And we can discuss everything. But please know that we have our positions on these issues — a united Jerusalem, etc. etc. Sitting down with you does not mean we agree to all your demands."

Very clearly, the PA has staked out its positions: Eastern Jerusalem, everything over the Green Line, etc.

~~~~~~~~~~

I share this rather hair-raising information from Z Street:

"Z STREET, a pro-Israel non-profit corporation, filed a lawsuit in federal court today charging that the IRS violated the organization's First Amendment rights. The suit was filed after Z STREET was told by an IRS official that its application for tax-exempt status has been delayed because an IRS policy requires consideration of whether a group's views on Israel differ from those of the current Administration.

"'...it is...a clear violation of the First Amendment for a government agency to penalize an organization because of its political position on Israel or anything else,' said Z STREET president Lori Lowenthal Marcus, a former First Amendment lawyer."
http://www.main4.org/newsletter/ display.php?M=28842&C= 9635ed607f0a887046372114 6545e1ee&S=95&L=11&N=46

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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IRS SUED FOR OR DISCRIMINATION AGAINST ORGANIZATIONS THAT DON'T SHARE ADMINISTRATION'S POSITIONS ON ISRAEL
Posted by Z Street Organization, August 25, 2010.
 

Z STREET, a pro-Israel non-profit corporation, filed a lawsuit in federal court today charging that the IRS violated the organization's First Amendment rights. The suit was filed after Z STREET was told by an IRS official that its application for tax-exempt status has been delayed because an IRS policy requires consideration of whether a group's views on Israel differ from those of the current Administration.

"Not only is it patently un-American but it is also a clear violation of the First Amendment for a government agency to penalize an organization because of its political position on Israel or anything else," said Z STREET president Lori Lowenthal Marcus, a former First Amendment lawyer. "This situation is the same as if the government denied a driver's license to people because they were Republicans or Democrats. It goes against everything for which our country stands."

Z STREET filed for tax-exempt status in January of this year and, despite having met all of the requirements for grant of this status, the application has been stalled. An IRS agent told Z STREET's lawyers that the application was delayed because of a Special Israel Policy that requires more intense scrutiny of organizations which have to do with Israel, in part to determine whether they espouse positions on Israel contrary to those of the current Administration.

Z STREET is a Zionist organization that proudly supports Israel's right to refuse to negotiate with, make concessions to, or appease terrorists. Z STREET's positions on Israel and, in particular, on the Middle East "peace process" differ significantly from those espoused by the Obama administration.

If Z STREET had tax-exempt status, its donors would be able to deduct contributions from their taxable income. The IRS's refusal to grant tax-exempt status to Z STREET has inhibited the organization's fundraising efforts, and therefore impeded its ability to speak and to educate the public regarding the issues that are the focus and purpose of Z STREET.

The lawsuit, Z STREET v. Shulman, Commissioner of Internal Revenue, was filed today in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Z STREET
WWW.ZSTREET.ORG
contact@zstreet.org
P.O. Box 182
Merion Station, PA 19096
610.664.1184 phone
610.664.1186 fax

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OUTRAGE: ILLEGAL ALIENS FROM TERRORIST NATIONS RELEASED IN U.S. BY DHS
Posted by Jim Kouri, August 24, 2010.
 

The dangerous terrorist group Hezbollah is active in South America training and recruiting members. (Photo: Jerusalem News)

In what it termed a reprehensible move for an agency charged with protecting the nation, a non-partisan legal group is reporting that the Department of Homeland Security has released nearly 500 illegal aliens — who remain fugitives — from terrorist-sponsoring countries and others known to present a danger to the U.S.

A conservative news web site, CNS.com, had obtained government records under the Freedom of Information Act. The records show that, the Department of Homeland Security caught and released 481 illegal aliens from nations designated by the State Department as sponsors of terrorism or "countries of interest."

According to legal eagles at Judicial Watch, these dangerous illegal aliens remain fugitives whose whereabouts are unknown, as proven by Immigration and Customs Enforcement's own database accessed by the news group. All came from four nations that sponsor terrorism — Iran, Syria, Sudan and Cuba — or countries determined by the U.S. government to present a threat. Those include Afghanistan, Algeria, Lebanon, Libya, Nigeria, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Yemen.

The information obtained in the public records request includes the date that each illegal immigrant was taken into custody by the federal government, which ICE jurisdiction arrested them, the date they were released, the status of their case and other personal details about the alien. The records specifically state that there are 481 "active" cases for "fugitives" from the four state sponsors of terror and nine of the 10 "countries of interest."

Cuba has the most with 137, followed by Nigeria (97), Pakistan (87) and Lebanon (34). Iran and Iraq have 29 and 26 respectively. The rest include Somalia (22), Sudan (14), Syria (13) and Yemen and Algeria with eight each. Afghanistan has four and Saudi Arabia, where most of the 9/11 hijackers came from, has two.

ICE justifies their release by explaining that the immigration detention system can only accommodate a portion of the 1.6 million aliens being processed in the country. Everyone can't be detained, so "we have to prioritize who we put in detention," an ICE official told CNS.

Apparently the U.S. government doesn't consider it a priority to keep undocumented nationals from terrorist-sponsoring nations from roaming freely throughout the country, said an official from Judicial Watch.

Jim Kouri, CPP, is Fifth Vice-President of the National Association of Chiefs of Police (copmagazine@aol.com). This article appeared in
http://www.examiner.com/law-enforcement- in-national/illegal-aliens-from-terrorist-nations- released-u-s-by-dhs

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THE DANGER OF DIRECT TALKS
Posted by David Isaac, August 24, 2010.

Direct talks begin Sept. 2. The man on the street is pessimistic they won't succeed. We look at the real reason for pessimism — that they will.

 

"Almost everyone thinks direct talks will start in a blind alley and end up in a dead end," according to a recent Israel National News report, which buttonholed both Arab and Jew on the upcoming talks. Both sides expressed pessimism that the new round of negotiations would lead anywhere.

There is reason for pessimism, but not for the reasons stated in the article. History has shown that Israeli leaders have a tendency to collapse under pressure and to deliver far more than they intended. The true cause for pessimism is that these talks may actually lead to an agreement, one which will send Israel scuttling back to the indefensible borders of 1949.

Shmuel Katz pointed to the Camp David Accords as a prime instance of how Israel buckles under pressure. Warning of the dangers posed by a Rabin-Aloni government, Katz wrote in "A Little Push from Washington" (March 19, 1993):

We may expect an imitation of the model of the peace process initiated by Prime Minister Begin in 1977. Do you remember that his original plan proposed conceding to Egypt only about 97 percent of Sadat's demands? Israel was to retain the use of one airfield, and the Israeli residents would not be expelled.

Then, however, began the salami process, which ended with Sadat's receiving the remaining 3 percent (including the expulsion of all the Israelis living in Sinai), and also a clause in the treaty legitimizing Egypt's going to war with Israel if called on to do so under separate agreements it had with other Arab states.

Shmuel liked to refer to the slice-by-slice tactics that the Americans employed as 'the salami process.' U.S. policy-makers freely admitted to this modus operandi, which Shmuel described as "so self-evident, yet so obscured from the gaze of the Israeli negotiators."

In "No End to the 'Salami Process'" (Oct. 20, 1978), Shmuel quotes then-Assistant Secretary of State Harold Saunders in an interview he gave to Arab media.

"The art in this process," he [Saunders] said "is to put the issues in sequence, so that one decision leads to another... An example of how this works is found in the decision by the Israeli Government to remove the settlers from Sinai. A few weeks ago that decision by the Israeli Government would not have been possible. But when the issue became the last remaining issue between Israel and the peace agreement with Egypt, then the Israeli people made the judgment that that issue should be resolved. I think it's possible in dealing with the many complicated issues that concern the Palestinians to see a similar sequence of issues that could be resolved...".

In the upcoming talks, America will present itself as an unbiased referee. But it long ago made clear which side it favors. The U.S. can certainly be counted on to once more employ the salami process, articulated so well by Harold Saunders 32 years ago.

And while the U.S. has made much of the fact that there will be no preconditions, what preconditions are necessary when the ultimate goal (to which all parties agree) is a "two-state solution which ensures security and dignity for Israelis and Palestinians"?

Yet another reason for pessimism is Israel's leadership. Benjamin Netanyahu, who agreed to a 10-month building freeze in Judea and Samaria, has said more than once that he seeks to "surprise the critics and the skeptics." It's impossible to say what goes on in the mind of someone who has through his speeches and writings shown a thorough understanding of the Mideast situation. Perhaps he provided an inkling to his thinking in his July speech to the Council on Foreign Relations. His remarks suggest that he hopes, against all evidence, to end the conflict once and for all by agreeing to a Palestinian state.

He would recognize a "Palestinian state as the nation-state of the Palestinian people," he said, but under the condition that "the Palestinian state is not a stepping stone to continue the conflict by other means, but it is an end to the conflict. An end to the claims of conflict... "In other words, this issue is resolved here and now. Sadat, the late Egyptian president said when he came to Jerusalem, he said, no more war, no more bloodshed. And what we expect President Mahmoud Abbas to say is, no more conflicts, no more claims, no more demands. Israelis are prepared to go a very long way. And I'm prepared to lead them a very long way to make peace." It's appropriate that Netanyahu brought up the memory of Sadat and the Egypt-Israel Accords. His behavior mirrors that of Menachem Begin, who also had a hard-line reputation but showed different colors once in office. In The Hollow Peace (Dvir, 1981), Shmuel Katz reveals the fatal weakness in Begin's character which the U.S. administration exploited to maneuver the prime minister into making far-reaching concessions and abandoning long-held principles of his party. Shmuel relates that it was Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan who revealed Begin's weakness to the Americans.

He [Dayan] reassured them, they need not worry. Begin, he said, wanted to go down in history as the man who had brought peace.

In this way the Americans obtained priceless information on the vulnerable Achilles' heel in the personality of Menachem Begin. Two weeks before Begin's visit to Washington in July reliable sources had reported that the American administration had ordered a psychological study of the character of Israel's Prime Minister. His image, of a rigid 'hard-liner' of obdurate opinions, foreshadowed no easy victories for American diplomacy. ...

Now on hearing this astonishing assessment by Dayan, Brzezinski must surely have recalled what Winston Churchill had written in his war memoirs after the death of Neville Chamberlain, in explaining his astounding surrender to Hitler at Munich in 1938: "His all-pervading hope was to go down to history as the great Peace-maker; and for this he was prepared to strive continually in the teeth of facts and to face great risks for himself and his country."

Begin took a risk and lost Israel its strategic depth in the south. Netanyahu now takes a risk that could lose Israel's strategic depth in the center. It takes no great foresight to see that neither man will go down in history as the 'great Peace-maker,' or that the mistakes of both will be borne on the backs of the Jewish people.

David Isaac is editor of the Shmuel Katz website: www.shmuelkatz.com. Contact him at david_isaac@shmuelkatz.com. This article is archived at
http://shmuelkatz.com/wordpress/ ?p=228&Source=email

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IS TIME A MUSLIM MAGAZINE?
Posted by Phyllis Chesler, August 24, 2010.
 

I did not think that the pro-Muslim/pro-Islamist and anti-Western propaganda could get any worse — and yet it just has.

TIME magazine has an August 30 cover story titled "Is America Islamophobic?" Within, the article is titled: "Islam in America: It's part of the fabric of life, but protests reveal a growing hostility to the religion of Muslims."

President Obama's rather strange assertions that "seven million" Muslims live in America (only 2.5-3 million actually do), and that "Islam has always played a role in America," actually contradict the point of this piece, but no matter.

One might wonder why any "hostility" to a productive, historically significant Muslim presence in America exists. TIME magazine does not tell us.

The article portrays Muslims as innocent victims and American non-Muslims as prejudiced racists who, historically, once banned Catholicism, tried to limit immigration, burned African-American churches, passed anti-Chinese legislation, criminalized certain Native-American rituals (polygamy, rejection of modern medicine), spawned the Ku Klux Klan, failed to elect a Catholic President until 1960, allowed Father Coughlin's anti-Semitic, pro-Nazi rants to appear over the airwaves, and interned 120,000 Japanese and Japanese-Americans during World War Two. This is all contained in TIME's "Brief History of Intolerance in America."

This article could easily appear in an Egyptian or Syrian magazine; however it would be Israel that would be blamed for various alleged atrocities, and Palestinians, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Muslim Brotherhood, even al-Qaeda, who would be seen as the innocent victims.

TIME magazine does not balance out their history of American intolerance with a history of American tolerance, which included separating the state from religion, reforming religions, instituting a tradition of free speech, fighting a bloody Civil War in order to free the slaves, giving women the vote and educational opportunities, freeing Europe from Nazi fascist rule and waging a Cold war against Soviet totalitarianism.

Also missing in the TIME magazine article is the fact that Muslim leaders, in the name of Islam, have behaved very badly and for a very long time. Missing is an equal history of Muslim countries which have practiced colonialism, imperialism, forced conversions, slavery (which is still practiced), and a far more barbaric mistreatment of non-Muslims infidels.

Muslim leaders, in the name of Islam, killed and forcibly converted Hindus in India for 800 years — and are still persecuting them; they have also destroyed the Christian Church in the Middle East and Central Asia — it is no more; in its place are only mosques and minarets where once only churches stood. Muslims vanquished Zorastrianism and Buddhism, and both exiled and genocidally exterminated Jews, Armenians, and Greeks. According to Israeli historian, Benny Morris, the Arab 1948 war against Israel must now also be understood as a religious holy war, a jihad, one that is still ongoing ("The 1948 War Was an Islamic Holy War," Middle East Quarterly, Summer 2010).

TIME magazine fails to note all this — and gives little credence to more recent historical events.

Recently, Muslims, in the name of Islam, have hijacked planes, blown themselves and other people up, flown planes into tall buildings, plotted bomb attacks in New York City's Times Square and over Detroit, shot American soldiers down on a military base in Texas, plotted to do so on military bases in New York and New Jersey. In addition, mosques everywhere, even in the West, have been preaching death to the Jews, death to Zionists, infidels, and Jihad Now! These mosques and their imams or mullahs have been funded by Arab and Muslim pro-jihad financiers.

After years of denial, indifference, and anti-racist, multi-culturally relativist political correctness, Europeans and Americans are only now just waking up to what Israel has been living with for 63 years. Too little, too late, they are now trying to halt some of the Islamist practices which are crimes and are best described as Islamic gender and religious Apartheid.

When westerners protest Islamic Apartheid, they are demonized as "Islamophobes" and "racists." This means that any resistance to aggressive Islamification is shamed and slandered. If that doesn't work, physical intimidation and lawsuits ("lawfare") follow.

Incredibly, the Western media and political establishment has taken the Islamist side. They confuse "Islamism" or "radical Islam" with the majority of silent Muslims who are too afraid to take on the Islamists, (or who agree with them), and with the small but precious number of Muslim and ex-Muslim dissidents, feminists, secularists, and moderates who do stand up to the Islamists but who are not consulted by western leaders or quoted in the Western media.

TIME magazine does not quote Ibn Warraq, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Seyran Ates, Zeyno Baran, M. Zuhdi Jasser, Magdi Allam, Bassam Tibi, Khaled Abu Toameh, who are Muslims and ex-Muslims who have written major works against Islamism, and who have argued for human rights within Islam, including the right to leave Islam without risking death.

TIME magazine's approach has also been adopted by the mainstream media in how they cover the controversy over the controversial mosque near Ground Zero. Those who oppose it are being called "bigots," "racists," and madmen, at least in the mainstream media. Those who defend it are seen as enlightened, tolerant "victims" whose religious freedom has been impinged. Just yesterday, Daisy Khan, Imam Feisel Abdul Rauf's wife, claimed that the attacks have gone far beyond "Islamophobia" and are now in the realm of "discrimination against Jews."

Next thing I expect to hear is that the "Zionists" are behind the discrimination against the "Jewish" Muslims.

Folks: Welcome to the Middle East in New York City. Now, we are really all Israelis.

Dr. Chesler is an Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women's Studies at City University of New York. She is an author and lecturer and co-founder of the still ongoing Association for Women in Psychology (1969). Visit her website at http://pajamasmedia.com/xpress/phyllischesler/

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P.A. ABBAS & FAYYAD DO NOT HAVE A MANDATE
Posted by Gabrielle Goldwater, August 24, 2010.
This comes from IMRA (imra@netvision.net.il). It was written by Khaled Abu Toameh, a journalist with Jerusalem Post and it is archived at
www.hudson-ny.org/1502/abbas-fayyad-mandate
 

A president whose term in office expired a long time ago, and a prime minister who won about 2% of the vote when he ran in an election, have now been invited by the US Administration to hold direct peace talks with Israel on behalf of the Palestinians.

Mahmoud Abbas, the president, and Salam Fayyad, his prime minister, have even won the "backing" of two key decision-making bodies that are largely controlled by their supporters: the PLO Executive Committee and the Fatah Central Committee.

The 18-member PLO Executive Committee, which met in Ramallah last week to approve the Palestinians' participation in the direct talks with Israel, is dominated by unelected veteran officials.

Only nine PLO officials attended the meeting. The PLO constitution requires a minimum of 12 members for a quorum. This means that, contrary to reports in the Palestinian and international media, Abbas and Fayyad do not have the support of the PLO committee to negotiate directly with Israel.

With regards to the Central Council of Fatah, it remains unclear whether its 21 members ever endorsed the US invitation to hold direct talks with Israel.

Elections for the committee were held on July 8, 2009. The results of the vote, which has been denounced by many Fatah officials as unfair, was that only Abbas loyalists were elected.

Some of the committee members have even issued contradictory statements over the past few weeks regarding the direct talks. In the beginning, most of them seemed to oppose such talks unless Israel agreed to stop settlement construction and recognized the 1967 lines as the future borders of a Palestinian state.

Now, however, most of the committee members appear to have changed their minds — clearly as a result of immense US pressure on Abbas and the Palestinian leadership.

It is not easy for a committee member who receives his or her salary from the Palestinian government to speak out in public on controversial matters.

So here is a president whose term in office expired in January 2009 — and who has won the backing of only some of his traditional loyalists — preparing to negotiate with Israel about extremely important issues such as borders, refugees, Jerusalem, settlements and security.

As if it is not enough that Abbas and Fayyad do not have a real mandate from their people, now they are going to lose what is left of their credibility as they appear to have "succumbed" to the outside pressure.

Abbas is in power because George W. Bush and Condaleeza Rice back then told him to stay, even though his term in office had expired.

Fayyad, who ran in the January 2006 parliamentary election at the head of the Third Way list, won only two seats. His number two, Hanan Ashrawi, has since abandoned him, making him the head of a one-man list.

Abbas was forced to appoint Fayyad as prime minister only because of pressure from the Americans and Europeans, who threatened to suspend financial aid to the Palestinian Authority if the Palestinian president failed to comply.

Fayyad's government was never approved by the Palestinian parliament, known as the Palestinian Legislative Council, as required by the Palestinian Basic Law. Parliamentary life in the Palestinian territories has anyway been completely paralyzed ever since Hamas forced the Palestinian Authority out of the Gaza Strip.

Officials in Ramallah say that the Palestinian leadership is being dragged, against its will, to the negotiating table with Israel. They say that the only reason the Palestinians agreed to hold unconditional talks with Israel is because of threats and pressure from the Americans and Europeans.

Over the past few months, Abbas and Fayyad had been telling their people that there would be no direct talks with Israel unless their conditions are fulfilled. Now, however, they have been forced to drop all their conditions and are being pressured to the negotiating table by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Besides, who said that Abbas and Fayyad would be able to sell any agreement to a majority of Palestinians? How can any Palestinian buy an agreement from them after they told their people that they are going to the talks only because the Americans and Europeans threatened to cut off financial aid?

Any agreement Abbas and Fayyad bring back home will be seen by many Palestinians as the fruit of "extortion" and "threats" and not as the result of peace talks that were conducted in good faith.

Leaders who do not have a clear mandate from their people will not be able to strike any deal with Israel, particularly when it concerns explosive issues such as Jerusalem, refugees and settlements. The Palestinian leadership's decision to negotiate directly with Israel unconditionally has already enraged many Palestinians across the political spectrum.

Abbas and Fayyad are nonetheless not stupid. The two are well aware of the fact that they do not have a mandate to sign any agreement with Israel. This is why they will search for any excuse to withdraw from the direct talks and blame Israel for the failure of the peace process.

Under the current circumstances, it would have been better had the US Administration thought twice before issuing the invitation for the peace talks.

Gabrielle Goldwater lives in Switzerland. Contact her at III44@aol.com

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LEBANON'S HEZBOLLAH DILEMMA
Posted by Mark Silverberg, August 24, 2010.
 

With each passing day, it is becoming increasing difficult to determine where Hezbollah control of Lebanon ends and where Lebanese government control begins. The terrorist organization now dictates Iranian decrees to Lebanese officials and institutions, manipulates their activities, and greatly influences the country's decision-making processes through infiltration, intimidation, and terrorism. No decision can be made by the Lebanese government or any of its institutions including the Lebanese Armed Forces without Hezbollah's approval.

The deadly clash in early August along the Lebanon-Israel border that left a senior IDF officer dead and another seriously wounded highlighted the problem, and has raised questions about future U.S. government funding of advanced weaponry and equipment for the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) — a policy which, until now, has represented the cornerstone of U.S. efforts to stabilize that country. Evidence indicates that the LAF sniper (a Shiite) was closely associated with Hezbollah (a Shiite terrorist organization), and many in Congress fear that such associations between the LAF and Hezbollah go far deeper than meets the eye.

Hezbollah's influence has gradually seeped into state institutions especially the Lebanese army. The LAF's profound weaknesses and the level of penetration by Hezbollah is one of the main reasons why the LAF seeks to avoid a confrontation. There is a very real danger that, in such an eventuality, the LAF's Shiite contingent (estimated at approximately a third of LAF army officers and sixty percent of its rank and file soldiers) would desert and join the terrorist group leading to another Lebanese civil war.

The last time Hezbollah openly challenged the authority of the government in May 2008, the LAF stood aside while Hezbollah took over Beirut in 24 hours after the Lebanese government moved to shut down the organization's telecommunications network. The LAF also performed poorly in its battles with Fatah al-Islam in the Palestinian refugee camp Nahr el Bared that same year.

Of concern to members of Congress is the knowledge that the LAF not only provides Hezbollah with intelligence information gathered through the use of U.S. and French high-tech signals equipment (as noted below), but has high-ranking LAF officers closely associated with Hezbollah. According to STRATFOR analyst Reva Bhalla, this is by design. Hezbollah discharges a portion of its recruits after they serve two years in its military wing, and then enlists them in the LAF. This has allowed Hezbollah to control both the composition of the LAF's ranking officers and influence its specific operations. Given Hezbollah's increasing numbers in the 58,000-strong Lebanese army, a natural bond has developed between Shiites in the LAF and their co-religionists in Hezbollah. Debka reports that shortly after the attack, a group of Iranian intelligence and commando officers toured the border area with LAF escorts that included heads of the 9th battalion, the same LAF military unit that was responsible for the August confrontation.

In 2006, the U.S. launched what has now become a $720M military assistance program for the LAF. It was introduced at a time when Lebanon was deeply divided between a Western-backed government and the Hezbollah-led parliamentary opposition. The aid has included the provision of a wide variety of weapons and weapons systems, specialized training using cutting-edge technology through the use of marksmanship simulators, and sophisticated signal-detection equipment that was to have allowed the LAF to identify, decipher and trace Hezbollah's encrypted communications.

In fact, this equipment and the intelligence information gathered through its use is being directed against Israel not Hezbollah. In April 2009, according to the Los Angeles Times, the chief of Lebanon's U.S.-backed Internal Security Forces warned Hezbollah security chief Wafiq Safa that two trusted, mid-ranking Hezbollah commanders were working as informants for Israeli military intelligence. They were never heard from again. This sharing of supposedly top-secret military intelligence information with Hezbollah eventually decimated Israel's intelligence network in Lebanon. According to STRATFOR, Safa has significantly increased his authority over all Shiite officers in the LAF, maintains close contact with the LAF command, has a say in all appointments, promotions and deployments of Shiite officers, and has arranged to be regularly informed of army movements and plans by LAF commanders.

The U.S. had hoped that bolstering the capabilities of the LAF would lead to tightened Lebanese control of its border with Syria to prevent arms smuggling, stabilize the region, improve the LAF's counter-terrorism capabilities in dealing with Hezbollah, and generally strengthen the Lebanese state at Hezbollah's expense. But it ignored the fact that many of the members and commanders of the LAF share Hezbollah's agenda and its dedication to Israel's destruction. Caroline Glick reminds us that "during the 2006 war, the LAF provided Hezbollah commanders with targeting data for their missiles and rockets........and announced on its official Web site that it would award pensions to families of Hezbollah fighters killed in the war." Moreover, the LAF has done nothing to block Hezbollah from remilitarizing and reasserting control over southern Lebanon.

For U.S. military strategists, it was not meant to be that way. When a pro-American coalition won Lebanon's parliamentary elections in June 2009, conventional wisdom had it that Hezbollah, having been defeated at the polls, would lose its appeal given that a U.S.-backed government would rule Lebanon. In fact, the opposite occurred. In November 2009, the U.S.-backed Sunni leader Saad Hariri was chosen as prime minister only after he agreed to share power with Hezbollah and its allies. The deal resulted in Hariri's government having no influence over Hezbollah's militia and its weapons buildup along the Israeli or Syrian borders. The group has amassed an arsenal of 40,000 rockets, four times what it had during the 2006 war. In effect, Hezbollah has now become the country's dominant military and political force holding the key to both Lebanese domestic and external stability.

What was overlooked in the decision to provide this multi-million dollar military aid package to the LAF was that the Lebanese and U.S. have differing perceptions on the nature of the threats confronting Lebanon. While both are hostile to al Qaeda-sponsored groups, Lebanon maintains that its primary antagonist and enemy is Israel. In its annual report on worldwide terrorism, the State Department confirms that the Lebanese government "continues to recognize Hezbollah, a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, as a legitimate resistance group and political party". The U.S., however, sees Hezbollah and the influence of Iran and neighboring Syria over Lebanese affairs as the biggest obstacles to a pro-Western and stable Lebanon.

It is this difference in perception of "the enemy" that concerns members of Congress who have oversight on the allocation of funds to the Lebanese Army, and who have grown increasingly unhappy with the military assistance program to Lebanon. What the U.S. did not contemplate was that the divisions that once defined Lebanese politics four years ago are no longer valid today. Former political enemies now work in close association with one another, and that association has enhanced the power, influence and prestige of Hezbollah and its master Iran throughout Lebanon — at the expense of U.S. and Israeli interests.

The international community cannot plead ignorance in the face of incontrovertible evidence of Lebanon's growing status as a Syrian and Iranian vassal state. Both the U.S. and France need to reassess their military aid to what has become an arm of the Iranian-Syrian axis. Hezbollah continues to serve as the dominant military power in Lebanon and as such determines whether peace or war will prevail on the Israeli border.

In the Second Lebanon War, Israel only fought Hezbollah and directed its attention to Hezbollah military infrastructures. Lebanese military infrastructures were consciously avoided. As a result, while Haifa residents lived in bomb shelters, Beirut residents went to the beach. Should these provocations continue, they will lead to a much more destructive war — one that will be very different from previous wars in one major respect. It will be a war between Israel and Lebanon and the Lebanese targets that Israel consciously avoided will become legitimate enemy targets and subject to destruction.

Contact Mark Silverberg at jfednepa@epix.net

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Posted by Carrie Devorah, August 24, 2010.

The article below was written by Jerry Klinger (jashp1@msn.com). He is president of the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation: www.JASHP.org. It appeared in the Jerusalem Post
(http://www.jpost.com/ChristianInIsrael/ Features/Article.aspx?id=185477).

I highly recommend reading the article by Jerry Klinger on Lord Balfour. Jerry is an amazing Jew determined to make sure that if our enemies get their wish to knock us off the map that dotted around the world will be little brass markers he placed to mark the esoteric places Jews have made THEIR mark so we will be remembered. I met Jerry because of Chezi. He wrote me. I was too tired from politics that murdered my brother to write at that time. I did though offer to photograph Jerry's initiative to move Herzl's grandson forgotten in a cemetery in NE DC to Mount Herzl to lay at rest amidst family. Stephen Norman's headstone remains in the DC cemetery. But his tibia and femur and parts of the casket are in Israel. Yes, long after we go our tibia and femur remain. I learn something new every day of my work. And I learned, mostly, about this incredible man. Life has been good to him. He is an example of what paying it forward is all about. He asks nothing of you. Me, I ask you read what he writes then pass his stories forward. He is preserving our legacy on earth. That will never ever be wiped out by anyone. Our heroes, unsung, but with the efforts of people like Jerry, never forgotten.

Sincerely
Carrie Devorah

 

The enduring legacy of one of Christian Zionism's great luminaries.

Lord Arthur James Balfour is best remembered for the famous Balfour Declaration of 1917 that bears his name.

This letter, signed by the cabinet of British prime minister David Lloyd George and delivered to Baron Walter Rothschild as a representative of the Zionist movement, affirmed that "His Majesty's government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people..."

But Lord Balfour's legacy of concern for the Jewish people and their restoration in Eretz Israel found other notable expressions beyond his time of service as foreign secretary under Lloyd George and as a prime minister himself.

His niece Blanche Dugdale wrote about her famous uncle in a twovolume biography published in 1936.

"Balfour's interest in the Jews and their history was lifelong," she recalled. It originated in the Old Testament training that Balfour had received from his mother and in his Scottish upbringing.

"As he grew up, his intellectual admiration and sympathy for certain aspects of Jewish philosophy and culture grew also, and the problem of the Jews in the modern world seemed to him of immense importance," wrote Dugdale. "He always talked eagerly on this, and I remember in childhood imbibing from him the idea that Christian religion and civilization owe to Judaism an immeasurable debt, shamefully ill repaid."

Last April, I was in Scotland and England doing historical research and thought it would be appropriate to find where Balfour "rested" and place a small stone of respect on his gravesite, in the time-honored Jewish tradition. The simple gesture opened another door of understanding and appreciation for this unique Christian friend of the Jewish people.

Lord Balfour died on March 19, 1930. He was buried on his family's estate at Whittingehame Tower, not far from Edinburgh, Scotland. The estate is isolated, difficult to find, but beautifully located a few miles from the sea, amidst sweeping dales dotted with sheep.

The family moved from the estate long ago. Whittingehame House, the family home, is stark in its cold, concrete-gray color, angular in its construction and impressive in its original approach down a broad treelined lane. Today, Whittingehame House has been converted, ignominiously, into a series of apartments. There is not so much as a historic marker to indicate the meaning of the site. They do not want the culturally curious.

Lord Balfour is buried nearby at a 15th-century military tower believed to have been the site of conspiratorial events contributing to the tragic story of Mary Queen of Scots. The gravesite is worn and partly lichen covered. I placed my little stone and said a Kaddish prayer.

Whittingehame has another history — a history of saving lives of Jewish children from the Holocaust. That story is not very well known. The greatest irony is that Lord Balfour, who had strived so valiantly for so long to have the British government help create a national homeland for the Jewish people, did not live to see the fruits of his efforts.

British governments that came after him tried to thwart his pro-Zionist policies in the hope that a Jewish state would not arise. The tragic results were that, when a home in Palestine was most desperately needed to save Jewish lives from the Nazi genocide, the British authorities barred most Jews from entering its safe haven. Balfour was unable to save Jewish lives in their promised homeland, but he did save Jewish lives in his own home.

As the darkening clouds of Nazi Germany descended over Europe, many Jews in Germany and Austria feared for their lives. Where could they go? If they could not save themselves, could they save their children? Rescue efforts were being considered, but few were enacted.

The terrifying events of Kristallnacht, the "Night of Broken Glass" in which Jews were attacked and their properties destroyed across Germany and Austria on November 9-10, 1938, pushed the British Jewish Refugee Committee to appeal to Members of Parliament. Shortly before, the British government had refused to allow 10,000 Jewish children entry into Palestine. The events of Kristallnacht reopened the issue.

The appeal was championed by such leading British Christian figures as Lord Baldwin, Sir Wyndham Deeds, Bertha Bracey and Jean Hoare. Assessing that "Here is a chance of mitigating to some extent the terrible suffering of their parents and their friends," British foreign minister Samuel Hoare proposed admitting 10,000 Jewish refugee children into Britain. The British government agreed to admit the children, provided a fiftypound bond was paid for each children to guarantee that they would be sent back to their parents in Europe after the conflict was over. The government further stipulated that only children under the age of 17 could go, and none of their parents were allowed entry.

The first of the Kindertransport trains left in sealed cars for Britain on December 1, 1938. The last left for England on May 14, 1940, the very day Holland fell to the Nazis. The final ship was strafed by Luftwaffe planes but arrived safely in Britain. In all, approximately 10,000 children were saved.

A similar effort to save 20,000 Jewish children was co-sponsored in the United States by Sen. Robert F. Wagner (D-NY) and Rep. Edith Rogers (R-MA) in early 1939. But the legislation failed to get Congressional approval. American isolationist sentiment, combined with latent anti-Semitism, grounded the measure. The American Jewish community thought it best not to protest.

In Britain, citizens were appealed to by radio to open their homes to the arriving children. Many of the children were taken in by Jewish and non-Jewish families. Some did not find homes.

Robert Arthur Lytton Balfour, Lord Balfour's nephew, discussed the problem with his father: What can be done to help? They resolved to open Whittingehame House to the children. Some 180 of the young Jewish refugees were brought to Scotland. A school program was set up, called the Whittingehame Farm School. Its purpose was to teach the young refugee children how to be farmers, not in Britain but some future day in Palestine. The children were given instruction in Hebrew, Jewish songs and culture. A synagogue was established in the late Lord Arthur Balfour's private rooms.

Jewish refugee children arrived at Whittingehame in 1939. A period of darkness and panic covered Britain in early 1940 when the European war turned hot. Britain feared invasion and the potential of a fifth column inside the country. The newly elected government of Winston Churchill responded to popular pressure to intern all citizens of enemy nations. Suddenly, any German or Austrian Jewish refugee over the age of 16 was arrested.

Whittingehame was no exception. Police arrived, and 37 refugees were taken away.

Most of the Whittingehame refugees returned after the national hysteria subsided. But some of the Jewish refugees in Britain were deported as enemy aliens to Canada and Australia. Two infamous transport ships from that period remain a blemish on Britain. One ship, the Dunera, became a hell hole of abuse as it carried Jews, Italians and some German POWs to Australia.

Another ship, the Andorra Star, carrying a large number of Italians and German Jews, as well as some captured German sailors, was sent to Canada. It was torpedoed by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland on July 1, 1940, taking down 600 passengers with it.

The Whittingehame Farm School remained open until 1941. The children were relocated into the local community. The young men of Whittingehame enlisted in the British armed forces, eager do what they could to end Nazi tyranny forever.

Carrie Devorah is an investigative photojournalist based in DC. Devorah is the sister of Jewish Press columnist Yechezkel Chezi Scotty Goldberg, victim of Egged Bus 19 bombing, 1-29-04. Contact her at carriedev@gmail.com

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FROM ISRAEL: BEYOND LUDICROUS
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 24, 2010.
 

It's gotten so that I cannot deal with the news — both with regard to what key figures are saying and how the media present it — without feeling colossally irked. Stupidity is irritating.

Take this, from today's JPost, front page:

"For a second straight day, Palestinian Arab eaders have threatened to walk away from upcoming talks if Israel does not extend the settlement construction moratorium on September 26. This has led a government official on Monday to question if the Palestinians "were not looking for excuses to pull out of the talks even before they began.'"

Gasp! How perceptive this official is.

Never mind that Abbas's reluctance to sit at the table has been smacking us in the face. No, let me rephrase this: Abbas may be reflecting more terror than reluctance. A whole slew of Palestinian Arab groups, as well as some members of his own Fatah, are adamantly opposed to his participating in direct talks. In fact, hundreds of politically-connected Palestinian Arabs have signed a petition warning him not to succumb to pressure to continue if his demands are not met. Explicitly because of the planned direct talks, Hamas indefinitely postponed a meeting with Fatah that had been scheduled for Sunday night.

Abbas at one point had appeared to consent to come to the table (with PLO Executive Committee consent), but then backtracked in face of almost blanket condemnation, and charges of having sold out. He has been given no wiggle room.

~~~~~~~~~~

On Sunday, Abbas drafted a letter to representatives of the Quartet stating that the PA would pull out if Israel did not extend the freeze; it was delivered by negotiator Saeb Erekat. Israel has a choice, said Abbas: Peace or settlements. And, it must be noted, Abbas is now also demanding a total building freeze in Jerusalem past the Green Line, which he has indicated has prime importance. (This "freeze" apparently includes a cessation of all evictions of Arabs, even if they are illegally occupying their quarters.)

Yesterday — according to the Arab language daily Al-Quds Al-Arabi (London), as reported in the JPost — Abbas asked the PLO Executive Committee for one month to try negotiations before deciding what to do next. He won't move without at least the PLO Executive behind him.

According to this report, Executive Committee member Hana Amira said that Abbas believes the talks "will fail" after the building freeze expires on September 26. Now, I understand that this is a translation, but the passive voice here fascinates me. As if he will have no part in what will occur. And, more significantly, he speaks as if he has no hope that things will work out, but is simply biding his time until he can pack up and leave.

The report further said that, according to Amira, no official decision was made to give Abbas permission to proceed last Friday — as the news had announced and as I had subsequently written — because there was no quorum present during the discussion.

~~~~~~~~~~

And here we have the most ludicrous statement of all. According to YNet, a US official here in Jerusalem told reporters that Washington expects the parties to "overcome difficulties" and come to a full agreement in one year. A partial deal "will not satisfy Washington."

Excuse me? Is satisfying Washington what this is all about?

Said this official, Washington believes that both leaders are ready to confront the difficulties in order to reach peace.

This leaves one speechless.

And so, my friends, if I am a tad flippant on occasion, even though the issues are very serious, it's because I've come to see quite clearly that the inmates are running the asylum.

~~~~~~~~~~

But here my flippancy ceases.

The US has indicated that it does not expect Israel to agree to any additional freeze prior to the start of negotiations. After all, didn't Secretary of State Clinton say that talks should begin without pre-conditions? The time to discuss the settlements, we're being told, is during those direct talks.

And so, the limited time period between September 2 and September 26 will be critical, for that is when the squeeze will be put on Israel most intensively by the US. Focusing even more: State Department spokesman JP Crowley said today that the time to discuss a freeze was on September 2, when the two leaders came together. This is actually prior to the beginning of actual negotiations.

~~~~~~~~~~

Vice Premier Silvan Shalom (Likud) yesterday told Quartet envoy Tony Blair that Arafat didn't demand pre-conditions, and neither did Abbas when negotiating with Olmert. He said was "pleased about the renewal of direct negotiations with the Palestinians," but indicated that adding pre-conditions could derail the process before it even took off.

Does Shalom's statement constitute a guarantee that Netanyahu will not cave? The prime minister may hold tight. I'm praying he will. He has repeatedly pledged to do so. But a guarantee? Nope. Netanyahu is known for buckling in the face of US pressure.

In part it's a question of what he thinks his coalition will bear. And so the possibility exists that he'll offer some compromise. Walking that tightrope is Netanyahu's style — trying to keep both his own people and the PA/the US happy at the same time, without actually taking a firm, clear, principled stand.

There are two likelihoods in terms of compromise. The first was proposed by Minister of Intelligence Dan Merridor (Likud): Begin construction only in the main settlement blocs that we'd be likely to keep in a final settlement. That would mean, certainly, continued building in Jerusalem.

The second involves subterfuge: Make no announcement that the freeze is extended, but, de facto, don't build.

My guess is that, thankfully, neither of these options would satisfy Abbas. He has as much as indicated so already. The pressure on him not to cave is so great that nothing less than a full and public concession on our part is likely to allow him to face his critics and also come to the table. Here we have a case (as we would in the negotiations) of the maximum our prime minister can give being less than he can accept.

~~~~~~~~~~

Now's the time: Let's help keep Netanyahu strong by contacting him:
Fax: 02-670-5369 (From the US: 011-972-2-670-5369)
E-mail: Memshala@pmo.gov.il and also pm_eng2@it.pmo.gov.il (underscore after pm) use both addresses

~~~~~~~~~~

Keep the message very short and simple. The impact is less if the message is too long or involved.

He promised that the freeze would not be extended. The security and the integrity of Israel require that he honor this. Otherwise he is surrendering what should not be surrendered and opening himself to even more demands. Implore him to stand tight. Assure him that you are with him if he does.

Send this out as broadly as you can and ask others to do the same.

It takes three minutes to do this, and it can make a difference. If you care, please take the time to act.

~~~~~~~~~~

My own guess is that Abbas, who has his running shoes on already and is prepared to take off, is likely to do so. But this should not prevent us from doing what we can to foster strength in Netanyahu. Nothing is to be taken for granted here because the stakes are too high. Even if there are no negotiations, if our prime minister agrees to an additional freeze, in principle he is surrendering territory, and a precedent will be set.

~~~~~~~~~~

There are readers who are writing to ask me about how negotiations are going to go — where the borders might be, etc. Not for a second do I believe there will be serious negotiations that will go that far. (Heaven forbid!) I am more focused on how Abbas et al might play things after he opts out of talks: How he will spin it so that it's our fault, whether he will attempt to bring this to the Security Council or push for a "one state solution" instead, or foster additional violence.

~~~~~~~~~~

One other issue here:

Daisy Khan is the wife of Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, and is working with him on the Cordoba Initiative to put the mosque near Ground Zero. Statements she has made in response to opponents of the mosque are greatly disturbing and indicate much about how these people operate. In an ABC news program on Sunday, she said, with regard to the opposition:

"We are deeply concerned, because this is like a metastasized anti-Semitism. It's beyond Islamophobia. It's hate of Muslims."

This is very clever and very dirty. "Hate of Muslims." You are a bigot if you don't support this project. Who wants to be a bigot? Especially in politically correct America.

And far dirtier: "Metastasized anti-Semitism." Socking it to the Jews. You don't like it when people hit on you. If you oppose us, you're just like them. And metastasized? Even worse than anti-Semitism.

Unfortunately, there are many American Jews who buy into this, and into the "if we can build synagogues, we must let them build that mosque" argument. They fail to differentiate, fearful of saying: "Wait a second, we Jews never initiated an attack on America, so it's not the same." "Hold it, there are sensibilities involved here."

And finally, they are sold on the "constitutional argument" that says there is "freedom of religion" in America. The constitution does not promise a particular locale for constructing a house of worship. The point is missed that the imam would be perfectly free to build his mosque elsewhere.

It's not without reason that I worry about America.

~~~~~~~~~~

I understand, by the way, that Daisy Khan is now about to travel at US tax-payer expense to join her husband, who's off in some place like Dubai, supposedly singing the glories of Muslim life in the US. But she's sour on how Muslims are treated in the US, so the US is about to be short-changed.

~~~~~~~~~~

"The Good News Corner"

Prof. Marshall Devor and Prof. Ariel Darvasi of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, working with international researchers, have discovered a gene associated with chronic pain caused by nerve injury.

While it has long been understood that some people are more susceptible to pain than others, no one knew why. "The immediate significance is the mere awareness that differences in pain perception may have a genetic predisposition," says Prof. Darvasi. "Our discovery may provide insights for treating chronic pain through previously unthought-of mechanisms."

________________

The Israel Museum, Israel's largest museum, which houses the largest art collection in the Middle East, has just completed a two-year renovation project that was financed by 21 worldwide donors and carried out by architectural firms in New York and Tel Aviv.

The Museum, which is situated on 20 acres overlooking the western entrance to Jerusalem, houses 500,000 objects arranged, says museum director James Snyder, to convey "a narrative from the beginning of time till today."

The museum has three reconstructed collection wings for archaeology, the fine arts, and Jewish art and life, which are now connected: Visitors can move from the museum's archaeology holdings to permanent galleries for Israeli art, and on to a newly designed Synagogue Route, that includes a display of four reconstructed synagogues from around the world.

The Museum also includes the Shrine of the Book, and the Billy Rose Sculpture Garden.

The full new, sleek facility reopened this month.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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JEW AGAINST JEW!; GREECE IS A WINNER; TREATED AS "A LITTLE GHETTO JEW"
Posted by Steven Shamrak, August 24, 2010.

Jew Against Jew! by Steven Plaut

It sounds like a contradiction in terms. An oxymoron. If only it was.

Jewish anti-Semitism is a modern disease. (Not quite! History is full of examples when self-hating Jews, conformists or Jewish traitors who converted to other faith were the biggest enemies and threat to their own people) The world is experiencing an explosion of it. Among the most malicious and venomous of all bigots, Jewish anti-Semites are at the forefront of just about every smear campaign against Israel and other Jews.

Such Jews are leaders in the campaigns to boycott and divest from Israel. A number of them make pilgrimages to the terrorist camps of Hamas and Hizbullah, with some even rationalizing or justifying terrorist atrocities against Jews. Such Jews pioneered the smear campaign painting Israel as an apartheid regime. Denouncing Israel as equivalent to Nazi Germany is their favourite pastime.

Western campuses are crawling with them. A Jewish judge chaired the UN commission that demonised Israel over Operation Cast Lead. A Jewish member of Britain's Parliament compared Hamas terrorists to Jewish fighters in the Warsaw Ghetto and denounced Israel as a Nazi entity.

Israelis and ex-Israelis comprise a shockingly large number of this group. Most Jews dismiss such people as "self-hating," but that term is misleading. These rogues do not hate themselves. Indeed, they are masters of narcissism. They hate other Jews and wish them harm.

These are not assimilationists of Jewish descent who have simply lost interest in their Jewish heritage or are indifferent to Jewish history and Israel. No, these Jews often make a point out of waving their own Jewish "roots" as artillery support for their extremist positions.

In some extreme cases they collaborate with neo-Nazis, Islamist terrorists, and even Holocaust deniers. No, that is not a misprint; there are today in the world Jews who are Holocaust deniers or who ally themselves with Holocaust deniers... (This modern strain of the disease flourishes only due to inapt policy of Israel's government and willingness to negotiate with the enemies and surrender Jewish land instead of pursuing the Jewish national goal!)

Ugliness of Hizbullah Exposed. The IDF has taken the unusual step of revealing to the press the precise location of Hizbullah hideouts in southern Lebanon. Many outposts and weapons warehouses are hidden in civilian areas and homes — but one actually takes shelter in a home for mentally handicapped children in the southern Lebanon village of Aita al-Shaab.

Food for Thought. Steven Shamrak

"Was the Aksa Mosque built over the remains of a Byzantine church? " — The church was built over the Jewish Temple! Christians had desecrated the Jewish holiest ground first and Muslims continued with the ugly tradition of insolence. Both religions have not expressed regret or have apologised to Jews!

Delay Tactic. Iran asked IAEA for help with sanctions and complains to the UN about American "threats of military action".

Stupid Games they Play. As the last brigade of US combat troops began to leave Iraq Thursday the Obama administration planned to double the number of private security guards it has in the country to fill the void. (More of taxpayers' money into the pockets of the 'mates', owners of private security companies!)

When the Word Worth Nothing! Sudden announcement from Moscow and Tehran 11 that Russia will activate Iran's first nuclear power reactor on Aug. 21 by loading the fuel has caused a major flap in Israel, Only two weeks ago Russian leaders assured Washington that the reactor would not go on line this year.

We Promote PA Economy While PA Boycotts Us. While Finance Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz toured the Gush Etzion region he criticized the PA's economic boycott of Jewish goods and said that "This is a malicious step by the PA, at the same time that the Israeli government is doing everything it can to promote peace and economic assistance with them." (It looks like Israel is perpetual glutton for punishment — Appeasement of enemies never works for Jews!)

They Love Jewish Money and Blaming Israel for Everything. An Egyptian government official has blamed a natural gas deal with Israel for the country's power cuts. The export agreement leaves less gas to run the local power plants, an unnamed official at the Egyptian Ministry. (Bad planning! So, whose fault is it?)

Smart Money-making Portrayed as Anti-Israel Disinvestment. Harvard University's investment fund reported sold nearly $40 million in shares of Israel-based companies, but the sales appear to have been more of a smart money-making move than an anti-Israel "disinvestment" action. The Harvard Management Fund sold out its Israeli investments in what it described as "another blow to Israeli shares."

Woman Murdered for 'Witchcraft'. Islamic extremism in Gaza appears to be behind the Wednesday murder of a 62-year-old woman. The woman, Jabriyeh Abu Kanas, had been accused by neighbours of practicing witchcraft and was reported to Hamas authorities. Hamas has imposed several restrictions on Gaza residents aimed at strict observance of Islamic law.

Move to Expose anti-Israel Self-haters and their Supporters. The Knesset's Constitution Committee approved the first reading of a bill requiring the submission and publication of reports by non-profit organizations that receive foreign funding.

Gaza Markets Full of Goods. Wafa News Agency reported that since the beginning of the month of Ramadan, the markets in Gaza are full of goods, and laden with fruit and candy of all kinds. This report comes despite the ongoing claims by the ruling Hamas government that there is a siege on Gaza.

Greece is a Winner. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited to Greece last week, in a sign Israel is looking beyond its troubled alliance with Turkey for other strategic Mediterranean partners. Long a traditional ally of Arab states, Greece forged full diplomatic ties with Israel later than other European countries, only in 1990, and has lately signalled a desire for closer relations.

Nuclear Threat from Iran is Becoming Reality. Russia started loading a nuclear reactor in Iran with fuel, moving the project closer to being complete. (Many nations, even Arab ones, fear that Iran would use the reactor for production of nuclear weapons — All of them are eagerly waiting for Israel to stop the monster, as it was done in Iraq and Syria. They will deffinitely comdem Israel later!)

Israel Aims to be Space Superpower. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is set to approve an ambitious plan to turn Israel into a satellite superpower. The multi-year plan calls for the government to annually increase support for space research and development by several hundred million shekels. The aim is to increase sales of Israeli space platforms to nearly $8 billion a year. (Not bad for a "little sh**y country"!)

Hypocrisy of the Headlines:

EU presses Israel to allow 'a better life' for Gaza — CNN — There is no presser on Lebanon, Syria, Jordan or Egypt to "better life" of professional Palestinian refugees. I wonder why?

Arms for Oil — What the Weapons for? Saudi Arabia's shopping list for American-made weapons has swelled to $60 billion, double the amount estimated for the previously announced purchase of 84 F-15 warplanes. The oil kingdom now is interested in 132 attack helicopters (who is it going to attack?) worth another $30 billion, but the Obama administration insists, "The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not affect the basic military balance in the region."

Obama in Line with His Islamic Agenda. US President Barack Obama has forcefully endorsed allowing a mosque near the site of the former World Trade Center, demaguogically saying the country's founding principles demanded no less, even as 70 percent of US citizens opposed the mosque's construction.

Israel is still Treated as "a little ghetto Jew". by Steven Shamrak.

Most of the time when a complex issue or subject is discussed a variety of opinions and emotions are expressed. We debate them listen to the opposite opinions and ideas in an attempt to find some understanding or solution. It is not always that the majority decision is the right one. If all parties involved in the discussion of the complex issue have articulated and supported the same point of view it is most probably the wrong one and, expressed under duress or biased attitude toward the subject under discussion with disregard to the facts and disrespect towards one or all parties involved.

Out of more than two hundred countries there isn't a single voice that would say: "Wait a minute, Israel is under terror attacks for many months and years." Most of Israel's neighbours refused to recognize her right to exist for 54 years. Israel desires to live in peace and is prepared to sacrifice a lot just for the sake of the piece of paper that would guarantee her a peaceful existence. Israel is condemned, but the Arab States that created terrorist infrastructures, who are instigators of recent waves of terror are not. Something is not kosher here! Why are different standards used? Don't you think Israel deserves to be treated as equal among equals? Don't you think there are legitimate historical, legal and moral rights for Israel to determine her own future?" I am still waiting to hear this voice!

Just imagine the reaction of Indonesia if it would be told "Leave West Papua". What about the United Kingdom and its occupation of Northern Ireland? Spain and France still refuse to even consider a legitimate call for independence of Basque people. There are 35 millions Kurds divided among five countries with no hope for independence or extermination of the Christians in the south of Sudan. All of them and more have legitimate claims for independence, unlike the Arab-Palestinians.

The most amazing thing about this situation is that, living in an environment of continuous war and terror created by her neighbours, Israel has managed to build a true democracy in the neighborhood of dictatorships. In the deserts and swamps the strong, arguably, world-leading economy is built. At the same time her neighbours still ride their economies "on the back of the camel" and those who have oil have not done much for the good of humanity or even for the future of their own people.

The Arab-Israel conflict is a complex issue. Too many people, countries and organizations are expressing their opinion without full knowledge or even a modicum of the facts or filter them through deeply imbedded hypocrisy, xenophobic anti-Semitism or politico-economic fear of blackmail by oil producing Arab countries.

Arab dictators cannot allow the true and economically successful democracy to exist in their midst. It will undermined their authority and will evoke in the minds their subjects undesirable questions and ideas. This is the reason why they are using radical Islam in order to keep the population of Muslim countries under control.

A short time ago the former Prime Minister of Israel, Binyamin Netanyahu, expressed the following ideas: "Militant Islamists resented the West for pushing back the triumphant march of Islam into the heart of Europe many centuries ago. Its adherents, believing in the innate supremacy of Islam.., militant Islam does not hate the West because of Israel, they hate Israel because of the West — because they see it is an island of Western democratic values in a Muslim-Arab sea of despotism."

We are in the presence of a miracle! Traditional Christian anti-Semites, Fascists, Communists, the Leftist opposition to Western democracy and radical Islam are all united against Israel and Jews in general. All those groups hate and have been fighting and killing each other for generations. The only force that is able unite them is a deep-rooted hatred toward Jews. But they do not represent the ultimate danger. It is the silent and indifferent majority we have to worry about. They have done it before. They allowed Nazis take over Europe and commit genocide. The League of Nations (currently named UN), the International Red Cross, the Vatican and the Western democracies stood mute when more than 6 millions Jews and many millions of other minorities were murdered.

The same perpetrators submit themselves to the newly emerging force of extreme Muslim pan-Arabism, not realising or deliberately ignoring the full ramifications of its expansionistic goals. They are standing now in state of the group paralysis induced by the fear, like a rabbit in front of a piton.

After centuries of persecution of Jews it is time for all decent people to say: "Enough is enough. Israel and Jews have full right to be treated as equal among equals. No more double standards!"

Steven Shamrak was involved in the Moscow Zionist movement. He worked as a construction engineer at the Moscow Olympic Games project and as a computer consultant in Australia. He has been publishing an Internet editorial letter about the Arab-Israel conflict since August 2001 and has a website www.shamrak.com. He can be reached by email at StevenShamrak@gmail.com

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SHATTERING SOME OF THE STALIN-HITLER MYTHS
Posted by Yoram Fisher, August 23, 2010.

DEATHRIDE:
Hitler vs. Stalin — The Eastern Front, 1941-1945

By John Mosier
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
June, 2010
Hardcover, 470 pp.
ISBN-13: 9781416573487
ISBN: 1416573488


This review was written by David M. Shribman, executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, was for a decade the Globe's Washington bureau chief. He can be reached at dshribman@post-gazette.com.

 

We think we understand the great German-Russian conflict of the Eastern Front of World War II. We think it was the great grudge match of the tyrants, Stalin and Hitler. We think Stalin panicked in June 1941 when his Nazi ally turned on him. We think Hitler was beaten by the same Russian winter that defeated Napoleon a century earlier. We think Stalin was steadfast in refusing to consider surrender. We think the Soviets prevailed in the greatest tank battle ever, at Kursk.

Maybe not. At least that is what the historian John Mosier, who in an earlier volume shattered the myths surrounding Hitler's Blitzkrieg, is telling us in Deathride: Hitler vs. Stalin — The Eastern Front, 1941-1945.' It is a dramatic departure from the conventional wisdom and is itself a dramatic chronicle of the most brutal theater in the most brutal war in one of history's most brutal centuries. But the real theme is even bigger than the Eastern Front, which itself stretched from the Baltic to the Black Sea.

Mosier is arguing that World War II was fought for economics, not for political or ideological reasons. That is not a new thesis, to be sure, but his is a creative approach, holding that not only the motivations but also the maneuvers of the war were almost entirely economic in nature.

Hitler, for example, wanted Poland because it was a net exporter of goods to Germany. The Allies then tried to block iron ore shipments from Scandinavia, hoping to deny the Nazis the materials required to build tanks and planes. And the whole bloody thing was a war on an economic, not a political, front. The Allies, which included the Soviet Union by war's end, simply out produced Germany, and in fact the Third Reich was defeated by two nations that weren't even their adversaries when the war began, the United States and the Soviet Union.

This is a clear-eyed, compelling description of a battle that has been described many times, but seldom with such an ironic eye. This monstrous war, conducted against the backdrop of the tyrants' purges and their mechanical approaches to civilian death, was conducted in a great killing field of ethnic groups, including the Poles and other Slavic peoples, many of whom fared little better under Stalin than they did under Hitler. And these persecuted Eastern Europeans were themselves no friends of the Jews, who were virtually exterminated in this charnel house.

What emerges from these pages is a struggle between vicious Soviet bunglers with a craven leadership willing to sacrifice millions to survive versus vicious German technocrats with a leadership that didn't anticipate the dangers of military over-extension and the advantages its rival possessed by fighting a defensive war in a primitive land with unlimited cannon fodder. That said, Mosier believes that Stalin was closer than anyone (including Stalin himself) knew to running out of men, some of whom by 1943 were getting only two days of training.

Now back to those myths that lay shattered on Mosier's pages. Stalin wasn't immobilized by Hitler's perfidy in 1941, only stuck in a 1914 reverie that permitted him to believe he had weeks to mobilize and to think a diplomatic resolution was plausible. The Nazis were defeated in Russia more by Father Fall than by General Winter — that is, not when the land was full of ice but when the roads were full of mud. Stalin would have entertained an armistice but fought on mostly because Hitler wouldn't consider one. And as for Kursk, that wasn't the clear-cut victory that Soviet propagandists claimed.

Wars have a chilling bottom line, and Mosier's is this: The war in the East was Hitler's to lose and he did. Several times on the verge of victory, the Germans were not defeated by a superior rival, only by superior will or at least the willingness to pay the price of victory. Stalin won the war "only because he was willing to sacrifice approximately 27 million Russians.'' Horrifying conclusion, horrifying battle, horrifying victory.

Yoram Fisher lives on Kibbutz Kfar Blum Doar Na Galil Elyon. Contact him by email at yoramski@yahoo.com. This article is archived at
http://www.boston.com/ae/books/articles/ 2010/07/08/deathride_shatters_some_myths_ about_hitler_stalin_and_world_war_ii/

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COUNTER MISSIONARIES UNITE AND LAUNCH JEWISH ISAIAH 53.COM
Posted by Ellen Horowitz, August 23, 2010.
 

In a stunning show of unity, counter-missionary professionals from across the globe, and representing a number of organizations, have joined forces to offer a creative and pro-active response to recent missionary campaigns which have been targeting the Jewish people for conversion.

Jewish Isaiah 53.com went live in the early hours of the morning and offers a direct and comprehensive response to aggressive and virulent campaigns like that launched by the missionary organization Chosen People Ministries, which targeted Jews throughout the New York area this summer.

Isaiah 53 is frequently used by Christian missionaries to try and prove to Jews that the chapter's "suffering servant" is in reference to jesus. Those Jews identifying with their people and sensitized to Jewish history are, and always have been, impervious to this Christian theological spin. However, at present, a number of our people are spiritually floundering, and have forgotten who they are.

The launching of Jewish Isaiah 53.com is an unprecedented effort to clarify matters for those who are confused, and to educate and strengthen those who are actively trying to bring our people home to the G-d of truth.

Articles, commentaries and recordings by leading Jewish scholars, rabbis, and counselors in the counter-missionary field are featured at Jewish Isaiah 53. The currently featured professionals are (in alphabetical order):

Rabbi Eli Cohen, Rabbi Stuart Federow, Asher Norman, Rabbi Moshe Shulman, Rabbi Tovia Singer, Rabbi Michael Skobac, Penina Taylor, and Uri Yosef

Jewish Isaiah 53.com does not represent or stand for any particular organization. The site is a work in progress and many other counter-missionary professionals from a number of organizations worked behind the scenes to actualize this endeavor. Visitors to the site should look forward to future commentary and content from additional scholars.

Jewish Israel is honored to have been a part of this project from its inception and to have contributed the site's banner.

The webmaster of the site is Moshe Verschleisser and inquiries may be sent to info@jewishisaiah53.com

We hope and pray that Jewish Isaiah 53.com will prove to be a guiding light for the lost among our people, and will serve as a beacon of truth to inquiring souls among the nations...more

For information, please visit http://www.jewishisaiah53.com/

Ellen Horowitz lives in the Golan Heights, Israel with her husband and six children. She is a painter, an author and a columnist for Israelnationalnews.com. Email her at ellenwrite@bezeqint.net or info@jewishisrael.com

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KISSINGER'S GUILT
Posted by David Isaac, August 23, 2010.
 

"It is painful to think that someone who fled Nazi persecution as a young boy in 1938 should do so much damage to the Jewish State."

Recently declassified White House transcripts (featured in an editorial in the Israeli daily Haaretz) show former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger blaming Israel for the problems in the region, accusing Israel of being "deliberately provocative" and attempting "to create maximum commotion in the Middle East."

In the newly released documents Kissinger refers to the Golan Heights as "Syrian territory" and the Syrians as "my friends." He confides to an Algerian diplomat that "a (new Arab-Israeli) war wouldn't be so bad for us. ... We could show (Israel) we are tough." Us? This strongly suggests Kissinger identified with the Arab side in the Arab-Israel conflict.

While these documents do not cover the period of the 1973 war (they cover the end of the Nixon administration and eighteen months of the subsequent Ford administration), they bear out Shmuel Katz's devastating assessment of Kissinger's role during the war as crucial in turning Israel's military victory into a bitter strategic defeat. Just a year after the Yom Kippur War, in his 1974 pamphlet, "The Crisis of Israel and the West" Katz described Kissinger's actions and their repercussions.

When Israel had recovered from her initial, nearly disastrous setback, the resourcefulness, and courage and qualitative superiority of her solders so succeeded that — in view of all the responsible military analysts — she was on the brink of achieving the greatest victory in her history. ... [T]he Israel army had created an excellent bargaining position for whatever negotiations might ensue after the Cease Fire had been formalized in a resolution by the UN Security Council. It held firmly a wide salient deep into Egyptian territory proper with the road to Cairo open. The Egyptian Third Army, one of the two Egyptian forces that had crossed over the east bank of the Suez Canal, was encircled and its supplies completely cut off. ...

But in two further decisive steps the U.S. Secretary of State dictated the conversion of Israel's advantageous position into a posture of defeat. He insisted on the unconditional lifting of the siege of the Third Army. Brief Israeli resistance (by the Minister of Defense in a telephone conversation) was brusquely rejected....By February 1974 Israel had by diplomatic negotiation lost the Yom Kippur War, and the aggressor had been awarded the beginnings of a retrospective victory in the Six Day War. The Egyptians moreover made no secret of their confidence that this was only the first step to Israel's being forced out of all of Sinai. The Egyptian President in particular repeatedly gave expression to this confidence, indicating without inhibition that this is what he had been promised by the U.S. Secretary of State whom he trusted absolutely in view of what he had already done for the Arab cause.

Twenty seven years later, in 2001, in a column "In Politics: No Friendships, Only Interests" Shmuel Katz returned to the theme of Kissinger's 1973 game plan, this time with Kissinger's own memoirs as evidence. Kissinger was determined, Katz wrote

on a diplomacy that would result in Egypt's moving over from the Soviet orbit to the American. The price, as became evident, was to be a sacrifice of Israel....That is why the Egyptians to this day celebrate what they claim was a military victory over Israel. That is why, in Israel, the Yom Kippur War is remembered and felt as a bitter defeat. The harm done to Israel was and remains incalculable, not least in that sense of having been defeated.

Moreover, Kissinger accomplished his goals through deception. As Katz details in "The Man with A Plan" (Oct. 23, 2003), with Israel facing a "dangerous shortage of materiel" Kissinger held up the arms shipments to Israel, claiming falsely it was Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger's doing. Kissinger then used Israel's predicament to pressure American Jewish leaders to abandon their efforts on behalf of Soviet Jewry in return for his support in expediting the delivery of the sorely needed materiel — arms and supplies which he was responsible for holding up in the first place.

Kissinger also hinted to Defense Minister Moshe Dayan of a Soviet atomic threat if Israel didn't comply with his demands. Katz says this was a bald-faced lie. The Soviets had made no such threat. Katz writes:

Dayan later realized that he had been hoodwinked, and indeed, on examination of Kissinger's blow-by-blow negotiations with the Russians, there is not a smidgen of a hint of an atomic threat by the Russians. In a public lecture in May 1974, Dayan declared:

"The Americans denied us the fruits of victory. It was an ultimatum. Had the US not pressed us, the Third Army and Suez City would have had to surrender. We would have captured 30,000 to 40,000 soldiers and Sadat would have had to admit it to his people. We might have held them only for a day and let them walk out without their arms, but it would have changed the whole Egyptian attitude about whether they won the war or not."

It is painful to think that someone who fled Nazi persecution as a young boy in 1938 should do so much damage to the Jewish State. Yet, a closer look shows that Kissinger has, at best, a tenuous connection with his Judaism. Rabbi Norman Lamm, former chancellor of Yeshiva University, spotted this early. In his article "Kissinger and the Jews" (Dec. 20, 1975), a devastating critique, he writes, "Dr. Kissinger is an illustration of how high an assimilated Jew can rise in the United States, and how low he can fall in the esteem of his fellow Jews."

Lamm referred to a recent visit by Henry Kissinger and his parents to Furth, their hometown in Bavaria which they escaped before the war. They had only kind words for their native city, "but nary a word about the Holocaust, not a word about the Nazis who drove them out of that city!" On top of this, Lamm reveals that Kissinger didn't want to visit Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Memorial, during his first trip to Israel, and had to be "persuaded." He "accepted only when he was told that every other foreign minister visiting Israel had done so."

This hasn't stopped Kissinger from portraying himself as one with the Jewish community, accepting awards from the Anti-Defamation League and bestowing awards on behalf of Jewish organizations like the United Jewish Appeal.

Kissinger's guilt runs deep. Whether or not he feels it is another matter. Zionist writer William Mehlman offers a remarkable footnote involving Kissinger and Katz sometime after the Yom Kippur War. Kissinger got wind of a rumor — unfounded — that Shmuel had taken out a contract on his life (a fantasy Kissinger apparently believed based on the allegations about his role in delaying the resupply of munitions to Israel during the war).

"Shmuel, informed of what had transpired and anxious to put the rumor to rest, arranged a face-to-face meeting with Kissinger at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. 'From the moment I entered his suite until I left three minutes later,' Katz related to a small circle of friends in Tel Aviv, 'he did not stop shouting at me. He never gave me a chance to refute the rumor. In fact I never got a chance to say a word. Finally, I just turned around and walked out.'"

Mehlman writes, "Whatever debt Henry Kissinger may or may not have felt he owed his conscience, he must surely have learned by now that it wasn't Shmuel Katz who had come to collect."

Kissinger is 87. It doesn't look as if he will make amends in this world. Perhaps in the next.

David Isaac is editor of the Shmuel Katz website: www.shmuelkatz.com. Contact him at david_isaac@shmuelkatz.com

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FROM ISRAEL: ON WHAT PREMISES?
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 22, 2010.
 

I wrote yesterday about the fact that the Quartet had, in the end, not mentioned pre-conditions in its call for negotiations released on Friday. Almost. But this turns out not quite to be so.

In today's JPost, Khaled Abu Toameh writes that the PLO Executive Committee, which met Friday night, supported talks because they were being held on the basis of a Quartet statement made earlier this year.

The Quartet statement referred to was made in Moscow on March 19, 2010. And, indeed, the Quartet statement released on Friday states:

"The Quartet reaffirms its full commitment to its previous statements, including in Trieste on 26 June 2009, in New York on 24 September 2009, and its statement in Moscow on 19 March 2010 which provides that direct, bilateral negotiations that resolve all final status issues should 'lead to a settlement, negotiated between the parties...'"

This is the old "inclusion by allusion" technique. The Quartet did not have to declare that there were pre-conditions, it merely had to declare its commitment to an earlier statement that implied there were such pre-conditions. Friday's statement simply says that there should be direct bilateral negotiations to resolve all issues, etc. This is slippery (and not accidentally so). One must look at the Moscow statement in its entirety to know what's really being referred to.

The text of that statement can be found here:
http://sofiaecho.com/2010/03/19/ 875958_middle-east-quartets-march-19 -statement-in-moscow

While it specifically says there are no pre-conditions to negotiations, it also says:

"The Quartet urges the government of Israel to freeze all settlement activity, including natural growth, dismantle outposts erected since March 2001; and to refrain from demolitions and evictions in East Jerusalem."

And, further, that:

"Recalling that the annexation of East Jerusalem is not recognized by the international community, the Quartet underscores that the status of Jerusalem is a permanent status issue that must be resolved through negotiations between the parties and condemns the decision by the government of Israel to advance planning for new housing units in East Jerusalem."

The readiness of the PLO Executive Committee to move ahead with negotiations is premised, then, on these statements.

And understand that when "East Jerusalem" is referred to, this is not a geographic designation but a political one, referring to everything over the Green Line, so that new housing units in Gilo or French Hill would be prohibited.

~~~~~~~~~~

Meanwhile, MK Ophir Akunis has released an official Likud statement saying that the American statement calling for talks without pre-conditions is a huge victory for Israel:

"It took a year and a half to persuade the international community and the Palestinians that direct dialogue is the only way to reach a solution to the conflict. This is further proof that when you stand up for your principles and do not give in, you can attain diplomatic achievements."

Well... I'm totally on board for our standing up for our principles, and I do believe that standing strong can lead to diplomatic achievements.

But I am not yet convinced that we've genuinely achieved a diplomatic success here. It seems to me, rather, that there is a stalemate — because the premises on which the two ostensible negotiating partners will be proceeding will not be the same. We will proceed under the assumption that there are no pre-conditions. But the first time we begin to build in eastern Jerusalem (may it be!) Abbas and the PLO will scream and holler that the Quartet said we should not be doing this and we've undermined everything (and perhaps made it impossible to proceed).

This, I would suggest, is a paradigm for the entire anticipated "negotiating process." We and the PA are so far apart on our goals and intentions that there will be neither a meeting of the minds nor genuine negotiations of any meaningful sort.

~~~~~~~~~~

At today's Cabinet meeting, PM Netanyahu made the following statement:

"We are coming to talks from a real desire to achieve a peace agreement between the two peoples, while safeguarding Israel's national interests, foremostly security. I know that there is a considerable skepticism after 17 years having passed since the beginning of the Oslo process. It is possible to understand why this doubtfulness exists. We are seeking to surprise the critics and the skeptics, but in order to do this we need a real partner on the Palestinian side. It is possible to succeed with a hand extended in peace, but only if someone on the other likewise extends one. If we discover that we have a real partner on the Palestinian side, sincere and serious in negotiations, negotiations which will require both sides to take necessary measures, not only the Israeli side but also the Palestinian side, if we discover we have such a partner, we will be able to shortly reach a historic peace agreement between the two peoples.

"This agreement will be based on three initial components: First of all, on real and sustainable security arrangements on the ground; secondly, upon recognition of Israel as the national state of the Jewish People, and this means that the solution of a problem like the demand for return will be realized in the territory of the Palestinian state; and the third component, the end to the conflict. We are discussing a peace agreement between Israel and a demilitarized Palestinian state. This state, if it should be established after this process, is due to end the conflict and not to be a façade for its continuation by other means...."

~~~~~~~~~~

While it is difficult indeed at times to accept with equanimity the apparent eagerness of our prime minister to negotiate with the Palestinian Arabs, I remain convinced that he is — as I have discussed on several previous occasions — playing a very calculated game, walking a tightrope. He does not wish to appear to be the "stumbling block to peace" before the international community — although the Arabs will do all in their power to counter with charges that make it appear that he is. He plays the game, while setting out stipulations that he very clearly knows are not only important for us but will be rejected outright by the Arabs, thereby insuring that their state does not come into being.

The insistence, alone, of our being recognized as a Jewish state, with "refugees" to be resettled outside of Israel, is a deal-killer. While, by expressing intention that any deal must be end of conflict and not "a façade for its continuation by other means," he is demonstrating awareness of the devious PLO "strategy of stages" and his determination that we not become enmeshed in these Arab plans.

While Netanyahu will be charged with setting out unreasonable demands, it is not because he is genuinely intransigent, but because he is calling the Arabs' bluff. They are totally without sincerity with regard to establishing a peaceful state that would exist at our border.

The trick here is for him to remain strong in his stipulations and red lines, and to avoid falling into a trap devised by either the Arabs or Obama. A tall order, which requires us both to pray a great deal and to express support in a variety of ways.

~~~~~~~~~~

Another way to play this would be to simply say that the PA is still inciting jihad among its young people and supporting Hamas financially, and thus we cannot negotiate now. But this — which would require great courage and nerves of steel — is not Netanyahu's style and we would be ill-advised to expect this of him.

His desire to appear before the international community as the cooperative party does have a logic: There is a possibility that when talks fail, the Arabs will charge us with being uncooperative and head for the Security Council. Netanyahu wants to be able to say: Us? I was pushing for direct talks but they dragged their feet. They have no legitimate right to claim redress.

~~~~~~~~~~

One additional comment from Dr. Aaron Lerner, of IMRA. Security interests may be very important in our considerations now, but he is a bit uneasy in finding too much emphasis on this. He wrote today:

"Israel's 'national interests' go well beyond security.

"Israel has a 'national interest,' for example, that for generations to come, Jews will continue to be able to pray at ancient sites sacred to Judaism in places such as Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Hebron...

"Put simply, if the IDF had a special gizmo that could satisfactorily protect Israel's national security interests with Israel finding itself on the '67 lines — including the complete division of Jerusalem, Israel still would have national interests to address on the other side of that line.'
http://imra.org.il/story.php3?id=49109

Let us never forget this!

~~~~~~~~~~

The New York Times the other day informed its readers that the US had "convinced" Israel that there is at least a year until Iran would be able to go nuclear, and that thus there was no reason to rush in bombing Iran. Obama's chief nuclear advisor on nuclear issues, Gary Samore, was quoted as saying, "A year is a very long time."

Well, never mind that a year is a very short time indeed. I read the report from the Times and thought it strange, for this is, as I've been reading it, pretty much what our intelligence has been indicating for quite a while. So now the US has "informed" us of this? Actually, as I've been reading it, the US estimates gave Iran more time, and our people have been saying, no, only a year to two more.

Then along came Jeffrey Goldberg, writing in the Atlantic, confirming my sense of the situation. Goldberg observes that there is no Israeli quoted in the Times article, confirming or denying what it says.

I mention this here only because the Times article created something of a splash.

~~~~~~~~~~

The IDF has announced that Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi will be replaced by Major General Yoav Galant, currently head of the IDF Southern Command. Galant will be the first Chief of Staff to have begun his military career in the Navy. He moved over to the IDF, however, when he was appointed commander of the Jenin Brigade and then later became commander of the Gaza Division.

According to Yaakov Katz, writing in the JPost: "A strong charismatic commander with vast field and combat experience, Galant is well respected throughout the IDF." Galant was organizer of the Cast Lead operation in Gaza, during which time "he insisted on visiting the Gaza Strip during the operation and spending time with battalion and company commanders in the field." He clashed with a more hesitant Ashkenazi, pushing for movement deeper into Gaza.

We can only hope that this report rings true (especially in the light of a major "incident" within the IDF regarding the replacement for Ashkenazi, which I will not explore here, but which had the regrettable effect of tarnishing the IDF image). We desperately need a well respected, highly competent and courageous leader at the helm of the IDF.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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SEPARATE and WHITE GLASS VASES
Posted by Fred Reifenberg, August 22, 2010.
 

Contact Fred Reifenberg by email at freify@netvision.net.il Go to http://visitingacousin.blogspot.com/ to see more of his graphic art.

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THE ZIONIST CONSPIRACY-O-MATIC
Posted by Boris Celser, August 22, 2010.

This is from the December 7, 2007 Judeosphere website
http://www.thejudeosphere.com/?p=568

 

Here's an experiment: Pick any event in history and type it into Google. Next, type the word "Zionists" and hit the search button.

Yes, you'll find at lease ten web pages that prove the Zionists are behind everything. Now, I know that we're "responsible" for the War on Terror, War in Iraq, and both World Wars...but I'm always surprised to learn that we're also responsible for the destruction of the Space Shuttle Columbia, Pokemon, and Hurricane Katrina.

I feel sort of sorry for these conspiracy theorists. Their so obsessed with exposing "the truth" that they never take time to enjoy the finer things in life.

So, as a public service, I've created the Official Judeosphere Zionist-Conspiracy-O-Matic (TM). It's simple, just follow this flow chart and mix-and-match items from actual conspiracy theories. It allows for dozens of variations, and it's an incredible time-saver!







Boris Celser is a Canadian. Contact him at celser@telusplanet.net

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FROM ISRAEL: UP TO NO GOOD
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 21, 2010.
 

The US plans afoot to bring Netanyahu and Abbas to Washington to kick off direct negotiations are most definitely not a harbinger of anything good.

Yesterday, in a briefing for the press, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, accompanied by special envoy George Mitchell, announced that:

"Since the beginning of this Administration, we have worked with the Israelis and Palestinians and our international partners to advance the cause of comprehensive peace in the Middle East, including a two-state solution which ensures security and dignity for Israelis and Palestinians. The President and I are encouraged by the leadership of Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas and fully share their commitment to the goal of two states — Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security.

"After proximity talks and consultations with both sides, on behalf of the United States Government, I've invited Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Abbas to meet on September 2nd in Washington, D.C. to re-launch direct negotiations to resolve all final status issues, which we believe can be completed within one year.

"President Obama has invited President Mubarak of Egypt and King Abdullah of Jordan to attend in view of their critical role in this effort. Their continued leadership and commitment to peace will be essential to our success. The President will hold bilateral meetings with the four leaders followed by a dinner with them on September 1st. The Quartet Representative Tony Blair has also been invited to the dinner in view of his important work to help Palestinians build the institutions of their future state, an effort which must continue during the negotiations. I've invited Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas to join me here at the State Department on the following day for a trilateral meeting to re-launch direct negotiations."

See here for the full briefing with press questions:
www.state.gov/secretary/ rm/2010/08/146156.htm

~~~~~~~~~~

Also on Friday, the Quartet (the US, the UN, the EU, and Russia) issued a statement, which said in part:

The representatives of the Quartet reaffirm their strong support for direct negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians to resolve all final status issues. The Quartet reaffirms its full commitment to its previous statements...which [provide] that direct, bilateral negotiations that resolve all final status issues should "lead to a settlement, negotiated between the parties, that ends the occupation which began in 1967 and results in the emergence of an independent, democratic, and viable Palestinian state living side by side in peace and security with Israel and its other neighbors.

"The Quartet expresses its determination to support the parties throughout the negotiations, which can be completed within one year, and the implementation of an agreement. The Quartet again calls on both sides to observe calm and restraint, and to refrain from provocative actions and inflammatory rhetoric. Welcoming the result of the Arab Peace Initiative Committee in Cairo on July 29, the Quartet notes that success will require sustained regional and international support for the negotiations and the parallel process of Palestinian state-building and the pursuit of a just, lasting and comprehensive regional peace...The Quartet Principals intend to meet with their colleagues from the Arab League in September in New York to review the situation. Accordingly, the Quartet calls on the Israelis and the Palestinians to join in launching direct negotiations on September 2 in Washington, D.C. to resolve all final status issues and fulfill the aspirations of both parties."
www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2010/08/ 146146.htm

~~~~~~~~~~

What does one say to this except "Oi vey"?

Anyone who has even a modicum of genuine understanding of the situation here (which leaves out a whole lot of people) is able to recognize that this latest effort towards a "two-state solution" is going to go nowhere, but is likely to cause many headaches for us and possibly generate additional violence before it arrives.

An independent, viable, democratic Palestinian state living in peace and security next to Israel, to be established within a year...

The PA is not peaceful, continuing as it does to utilize textbooks that promote jihad and otherwise honor terrorists. Not to mention that a major part of its budget goes to Gaza and ends up in Hamas hands.

It is not democratic. One or two elections do not a democracy make. Never mind that the PA is past due for elections, and that Abbas's term has expired. There is no free press in the PA, next to no human rights.

And viable? This is a joke, when we're talking about the entity that receives more funds per capita than any other group in the world.

But these problems will all be corrected within a year.

Oh, and the small matter of Hamas — which controls Gaza and is eager to take over a PA state in Judea and Samaria as well — will be dispensed with. I've lost track of how many times Abbas said that a deal has to include all the Palestinian people?

Can it truly be that the Quartet is doing anything but spouting words here? Can they possibly take their own declaration seriously?

~~~~~~~~~~

From the Israeli perspective, what I see most troubling is the Quartet reference to the Arab Peace Initiative, which — in supporting, among other things, "right of return" — is a plan for the slow destruction of Israel, and to the end of the "occupation," which means Israel pulling back to pre-67 lines.

I am further unhappy with a kick-off in Washington, which puts our prime minister under additional pressure.

~~~~~~~~~~

The PLO Executive Committee met on Friday night and, according to WAFA, the official PLO news agency, voted to accept Secretary Clinton's invitation, based on the Quartet statement.

However, the PLO also noted that if Israel didn't "halt all settlement activities, it consequently threatens the continuity of direct negotiations."
http://english.wafa.ps/? action=detail&id=14669

~~~~~~~~~~

And here I stop to note that the Quartet statement did not include this pre-condition, as earlier rumors predicted it would. What had been said is that the US would then follow with a statement without pre-conditions. My assumption is that matters were resolved this way, instead, with no separate US statement.

But the PLO has implicitly laid out that same pre-condition in any event. And negotiator Saeb Erekat, according to the Palestinian news agency Ma'an, was explicit about this today:

"The Palestinian leadership will pull out of peace talks if the Israeli government announces additional settlement construction projects [outside] the 1967 borders (sic), senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat confirmed Saturday.

"'If the Israeli government decides, on 26 September, to continue to permit the submission of settlement bids, then there will be no talks,' Erekat said, adding that the stance was reached during the PLO Executive Committee meeting Friday that formally accepted the US invitation to re-start direct talks.

"...Erekat's statement appeared to broaden the demand, however, in stating that any settlement announcement in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, would be considered provocation. The initial partial moratorium did not include the occupied holy city."
www.maannews.net/eng/ ViewDetails.aspx?ID=309683

~~~~~~~~~~

And so here's the deal: If indeed the meeting takes place on September 2, the Palestinians may be counting on Obama to pressure Netanyahu into extending that freeze — which would be an unmitigated disaster for us. This is one reason why the fact that the meeting is in Washington is such bad news. The turf on which a meeting is held has significant psychological impact.

Or, alternatively, they may simply plan on using this as their out, while blaming us for the failure of the talks.

A great deal will fall to us in the next couple of weeks, with regard to all of this — and you'll be hearing from me about it. It is imperative that Netanyahu stay strong with regard to not continuing the freeze. The sense I'm getting is that he knows that this would not be a politically viable move here in Israel, but nothing can be left to wishful thinking or chance.

~~~~~~~~~~

What I find interesting is that there has been no direct public statement regarding the talks (that I've uncovered) by PA president Mahmoud Abbas himself, although Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu put out a statement welcoming this opportunity. Perhaps more on Netanyahu's approach later, but here I focus on Abbas.

Clinton said there was consultation with both parties before the invitation was extended. And indeed this is the way such things are done, to insure success of an event of major proportions. But Mitchell, at the press conference, made it clear that "consultation" didn't mean securing acceptance in this instance — if was, rather, more a matter of letting the parties know what was coming. The PLO didn't even meet to decide whether to accept the invitation until Friday night.

We will presume for the moment that Abbas ultimately will show up in Washington by September 2. But his failure to demonstrate public enthusiasm about this meeting is a large piece of the story. If Abbas does show up, he will have come kicking and screaming.

I hate being tiresome and repeating what's been said before, but it seems I have no choice here: Abbas's reluctance, in and of itself, assures failure. While he may be pushed to sit at the table, he is not going to negotiate anything that includes reasonable compromise, and the net result of the talks will be only failure. More's the pity that Obama et al don't — or choose not to — comprehend this.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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OUR 'MODERATE MUSLIM' PROBLEM
Posted by Davey Alpern, August 20, 2010.

Clueless and gullible Westerners must go beyond the doubletalk and other verbal acrobatics regarding "moderate" Muslims. Read below.

Act for America (www.actforamerica.org) sent me this email:

Dear David,

Bret Stephens' recent column in The Wall Street Journal below is a must-read. Thanks to the controversy surrounding the Ground Zero Mosque, more and more Americans, as well as many in the media, are beginning to focus on the threats radical Islam poses to America beyond those who are the actual terrorists.

In a recent appearance on the Michael Savage radio program, ACT! for America president Brigitte Gabriel went into great detail about the "moderate Muslim" problem Stephens discusses below. We have seen this "moderate Muslim" song and dance many times before, where government officials ignore the true Muslim reformers while spotlighting the likes of Imam Rauf. Think Abdurahman Alamoudi, touted as a paragon of moderation, feted at the White House — until he was convicted on terrorism related charges. He is now serving a 23-year prison sentence.

Here's a question for those insisting Ground Zero Mosque Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf is a "moderate." Why won't he sign the "Freedom Pledge" sent to him by Former Muslims United? All it asks is that Muslim leaders oppose retaliation against Muslims who leave Islam. Rauf's refusal to sign a pledge opposing any kind of retaliation against "apostates" proves that his words about "tolerance" are a sham designed to fool the gullible.

There are true Muslim reformers in America. Rauf isn't one of them.

ACT for America is an issues advocacy organization dedicated to effectively organizing and mobilizing the most powerful grassroots citizen action network in America, a grassroots network committed to informed and coordinated civic action that will lead to public policies that promote America's national security and the defense of American democratic values against the assault of radical Islam. We are only as strong as our supporters, and your volunteer and financial support is essential to our success. Thank you for helping us make America safer and more secure.

 

The Ground Zero mosque imam earns wide congratulations while true reformers go ignored.

by Bret Stephen

Items of interest in the news media's coverage of "moderate Muslims":

  • The New York Times, Oct. 19, 2001: "Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki, spiritual leader at the Dar al-Hijra mosque in Virginia, one of the nation's largest... is held up as a new generation of Muslim leader capable of merging East and West."

  • NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, Dec. 9, 2004: "It's the TV industry's newest experiment, 'Bridges TV,' billing itself the 'American-Muslim lifestyle network,' featuring movies, documentaries, cartoons. ... It's the brainchild of Aasiya Hassan, an architect, and her husband, Muzzamil Hassan, a banker, who are disturbed that negative images of Muslims seem to dominate TV, especially since 9/11."

  • Boston Globe editorial, Aug. 4, 2010: "The simple fact is there's nothing threatening about the proposed Islamic center, which is being spearheaded by Feisal Abdul Rauf, one of the most respected moderate Muslim leaders in the country."

See where this is going?

Most readers probably know of Awlaki as the U.S.-born imam who presided over the mosque attended by two of the 9/11 hijackers. Awlaki also served as theological mentor to Fort Hood killer Nidal Malik Hassan, would-be Christmas Day bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, and Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad. President Obama has authorized the military to assassinate Awlaki, now thought to be living in Yemen.

Al Qaeda Imam Anwar al-Awlaki, former poster child of moderate Islam (AP)

As for Bridges TV, the saccharine story told by Brian Williams and reporter Ron Allen (complete with scenes of the family's domestic bliss in their modest home in Buffalo, N.Y.), came to an abrupt end in February 2009, when Mr. Hassan beheaded his wife after she had filed for divorce, evicted him from their home, and won an order of protection. Last week, Mr. Hassan's attorney defended her client on the grounds that he was, of all things, a "battered spouse."

Now we have the controversy over the Ground Zero mosque, opponents of which are being widely branded as bigots. As, no doubt, some of them are: There are bigots in any crowd.

Then again, is it bigoted to oppose bigots? Consider an interesting historical antecedent. In 1993, a controversy similar to the current one unfolded when residents of a Washington, D.C., suburb sought to use zoning laws to shut down the local mosque, ostensibly on grounds that it was a traffic nuisance. "Worshipers of many faiths said closing the popular mosque ... would amount to discrimination against one of the area's fastest growing religions," the Washington Times reported at the time.

The mosque in question? None other than the Dar al-Hijra, later to be known as the "9/11 mosque." So were the petitioners who sought to shut it down bigots? Or is it that they got a whiff of its extremism, and didn't like the smell? "We are appalled at the ill will and friction," the paper quoted one Sylvia Johnson, "who said mosque-goers have yelled at her and blocked her driveway."

Here, of course, the argument will be made that, unlike Awlaki, Mr. Rauf really is a moderate. And that might well be so — by the standards of his native Kuwait. But a man who claims to condemn all forms of terrorism yet refuses to call Hamas a terrorist group is not a moderate by American standards, which happen to be the relevant ones when you're trying to build a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero. Mr. Rauf still has a perfect legal right to go ahead with his scheme. But his supporters need to choose between defending him on grounds of his alleged moderation (in which case his views are relevant), or on the principle of religious liberty (in which case they're not). They can't have it both ways.

Which brings me to the fundamental problem with too many self-described moderate Muslims. A few years ago, my friend Irshad Manji made the point to me that "moderate Muslims denounce terror that's committed in the name of Islam but they deny that religion has anything to do with it." [Editor's Note: Exactly what CAIR representatives do.] By contrast, she noted, "reform-minded Muslims denounce terror that's committed in the name of Islam and acknowledge that our religion is used to inspire it."

That's a distinction worth pondering. It's also a considerable comfort to know that there are Muslims in the U.S. like Irshad who are working, tirelessly but mainly out of view, toward the cause of reform. They could use more support and recognition. As for the professional charlatans and secret radicals who claim to be moderate, it would be well if their cheerleaders in the media could inspect their credentials a little more carefully before lavishing them with praise. Because, when it comes to heralding the arrival of the long-awaited moderates, there's nothing more embarrassing than a case of premature congratulation.

The news items, blogs, educational materials and other information in our emails and on our website are only intended to provide information, news and commentary on events and issues related to the threat of radical Islam. Much of this information is based upon media sources, such as the AP wire services, newspapers, magazines, books, online news blog and news services, and radio and television, which we deem to be reliable. However, we have undertaken no independent investigation to verify the accuracy of the information reported by these media sources. We therefore disclaim all liability for false or inaccurate information from these media sources. We also disclaim all liability for the third-party information that may be accessed through the material referenced in our emails or posted on our website.

Contact Dave Alpern at daveyboy@bezeqint.net

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MOTHBALLING BUSHEHR
Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, August 20, 2010.
 

Allow me to repeat an earlier recommendation in dealing with the Russian-built Nuclear Reactor at Bushehr Iran. Once the nuclear fuel rods are inserted, that reactor will potentially be able to produce fuel that can be weaponized into atomic bombs.

Here in America, when we decommission a Nuclear Power Plant, it's called "Mothballing". Bushehr could be mothballed safely as follows:

First, hit the containment and control rooms with very small missiles carrying a light load of radioactive, micron-size particulates. This would be sufficient to set all the sensors in the plant ringing. All personnel would be required to leave the buildings.

Following that humanitarian protection action, a second wave would drop larger missiles, carrying a larger load of highly radioactive particulates which would spread throughout the plant. This contamination would be encapsulated within the various buildings of Bushehr.

The actual missiles would only have a sufficient charge of explosives to break into the building and discharge their radio-active contaminants. All personnel would have been evacuated from the first small missiles.

The plant would be safely rendered useless though the contamination inside the building. Once contaminated, de-contamination is not possible, given the particles enter every nook and cranny, all duct work, all surfaces, wiring channels, etc.

One does not have to use heavy explosives and possibly create an airborne plume from the fuel rods being exploded.

This solution, of course, only address Bushehr and not the many other sites in Iran which are buried deep underground in deep, thick concrete. This would require 3,000 to 5,000 pound (and larger) Bunker Busting Bombs and a series of massive attacks against most other sites where Iran is developing its nuclear materials to make Nuclear Bombs.

So, a little contamination could go a lo-o-ong way to freeze, mothball, and halt Iran's Nuclear Proliferation.

Emanuel Winston is a commentator and Middle East analyst. His articles appear often on Think-Israel and Gamla. He is a member of the Board of Directors and a research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies (http://www.freeman.org/online.htm). Contact him at gwinston@gwinstonglobal.org

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FROM ISRAEL: SHORT AND SWEET
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 20, 2010.
 

Short, because my time pre-Shabbat is limited this week, and not because there is little to write about — there's plenty.

Sweet because I begin with a great piece by commentator George Will — "Skip the lecture on Israel's 'risks for peace.'" He speaks on our behalf with exquisite understanding:

"In the intifada that began in 2000, Palestinian terrorism killed more than 1,000 Israelis. As a portion of U.S. population, that would be 42,000, approaching the toll of America's eight years in Vietnam. During the onslaught, which began 10 Septembers ago, Israeli parents sending two children to a school would put them on separate buses to decrease the chance that neither would return for dinner. Surely most Americans can imagine, even if their tone-deaf leaders cannot, how grating it is when those leaders lecture Israel on the need to take 'risks for peace.'

"During Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's July visit to Washington, Barack Obama praised him as 'willing to take risks for peace.' There was a time when that meant swapping "land for peace" — Israel sacrificing something tangible and irrecoverable, strategic depth, in exchange for something intangible and perishable, promises of diplomatic normality...

"The creation of Israel did not involve the destruction of a Palestinian state, there having been no such state since the Romans arrived. And if the Jewish percentage of the world's population were today what it was when the Romans ruled Palestine, there would be 200 million Jews. After a uniquely hazardous passage through two millennia without a homeland, there are 13 million Jews.

"In the 62 years since this homeland was founded on one-sixth of 1 percent of the land of what is carelessly and inaccurately called "the Arab world," Israelis have never known an hour of real peace. Patronizing American lectures on the reality of risks and the desirableness of peace, which once were merely fatuous, are now obscene." (emphasis added)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/ AR2010081804691.html? wpisrc=nl_pmopinions

~~~~~~~~~~

A couple of brief corrections from yesterday's posting:

I wrote, that:

"Berman says that the enrichment plants are the real backbone of Iranian efforts to develop nuclear weapons capability; his own well-informed speculation is that these reactors would be Israel's primary targets."

That was my paraphrase of Berman's statement. I have been advised that enrichment plants are not technically the same as reactors, and so, if there is an error here, it is mine, and certainly not Berman's.

And then, I referred to the situation in Iraq 19 years ago. But we hit the Osirak reactor 29 years ago, in 1981. Guess time flies when you're having fun, or something.

(Thanks, Jeff)

~~~~~~~~~~

After Shabbat there will be more to say about Quartet plans for "peace" negotiations and the issue of our hitting Iran.

For now I leave you with a link to a lovely video about the atmosphere, with regard to Jewish-Arab relations, in Hadassah hospital. I've written from time to time about how a visit to one of our hospitals most vigorously puts the lie to charges that we are an apartheid state. This video is from the video newsmagazine "Israel Up Close":
http://www.israelupclose.org/

~~~~~~~~~~

And a laugh before Shabbat from Dry Bones. The White House has put out material indicating that Obama prays every day and is a Christian, because a percentage of Americans are convinced he is Muslim. This is the Dry Bones response:

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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HOW OUR AID MONEY IS SPENT
Posted by Boris Celser, August 20, 2010.

One of my contacts sent an enquiry to the UK Government Foreign and International Aid Department about how aid is distributed to Gaza and the West Bank. This is their reply. Awful lot of money, isn't it — where exactly did it go (or more correctly WHO did it go to)?

I got a reply to my question of the DFID, as follows.

 

"Thank you for your email of 22 July, regarding the Department for International Development's support to the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs).

You can find information on our current and recently completed projects on the DFID website at
http://projects.dfid.gov.uk/.

As at present the website is not able to provide details of expenditure on a country programme for a financial year, I have provided a breakdown below of the £41.3 million DFID spent in the financial year 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2009 in the OPTs. This funding provided support to Palestinians living in both the West Bank and Gaza, and consisted of:

  • £12.9 million in immediate humanitarian assistance to Gaza following Operation Cast Lead in early 2009 (UN Relief and Works Agency £4m, International Committee of the Red Cross £1m, UN Humanitarian Emergency Relief Fund £1m, World Food Programme £2.5m, provision of 3 armoured cars for UN agencies £0.4m, and £4m to various non-governmental organisations such as Oxfam, Mercy Corps, Action Against Hunger, Islamic Relief, and for the location and diposal of unexploded ordnance) ;

  • £23.5 million for budget support to the Palestinian Authority through the World Bank Trust Fund, to help provide basic services to Palestinians in both West Bank and Gaza through paying the salaries of teachers, doctors and other public sector workers;

  • £4m for various projects, including support to the Palestinian Authority reform process, and the Facility for New Market Development which helps Palestinian business develop new products and access new markets.

  • £0.5m to providing communication equipment and training for the Palestinian police service.

  • £0.4m for a UN team to improve access for humanitarian aid and workers into and out of Gaza and the West Bank

Additionally, in 2008/09 we provided £19 million to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). This was the UK's 2008 contribution in line with our 5-year (2007-2011), £100 million funding agreement signed in 2006. UNRWA is the main provider of basic services — education, health, relief and social services — for the 4.7 million Palestinian refugees in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and the Occupied Palestinian Territories of Gaza and the West Bank.

I hope this is helpful.

Regards

Catrina Campbell

Public Enquiry Point, Department for International Development, Eaglesham Road, East Kilbride, G75 8EA, Telephone from the UK 0845 300 4100, from Overseas + 44 1355 84 3132

Customers who are deaf, have difficulty hearing or are speech impaired can send text messages to 01355 264562

Boris Celser is a Canadian. Contact him at celser@telusplanet.net

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ALLOCATING AID EFFORTS TO PAKISTAN AND GAZA
Posted by Maurice Ostroff, August 20, 2010.
Getting our priorities straight
Where should SINCERE humanitarians direct their aid efforts?
 

To Pakistan where 20 million desperate human beings have been rendered homeless in a tragedy that UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon describes as a global disaster?

 

OR

On elaborately planning a time-consumung and expensive flotilla to Gaza where, despite the hardships and contrary to reports of universal suffering, Gazans enjoy super luxury restaurants, a new elegant shopping mall and a new Olympic size swimpool?

Contact Maurice Ostroff by email at maurice@trendline.co.il
and visit his website: http://maurice-ostroff.tripod.com

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THE NEW ISRAEL FUND (NIF) MUST STOP FUNDING GROUPS THAT DELEGITIMIZE ISRAEL
Posted by Natan Nestel, August 19, 2010.
 

Prof. Gerald Steinberg, NGO-Monitor's president, has proposed funding guidelines that would end NIF's support for groups involved in the anti-Israel delegitmization campaign (See here.) Many of the groups that NIF funds call for worldwide boycotts, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel, and vilify Israel with accusations of "apartheid," "ethnic cleansing," "war crimes" and "crimes against humanity".

These groups, such as B'Tselem, Adalah and Breaking the Silence, were among the most cited references in the insidious Goldstone Report, libeling Israel with allegations of war crimes. These NIF grantees also lobby the governments of the U.S., the EU and others to adopt the Goldstone Report's extreme biases against Israel and endorse its recommendations (click here). Several more NIF grantees campaign against the legitimacy of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state, and are active in worldwide boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS), as well as similar campaigns targeting Israel (click here). The Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP), for example, backed the divestment campaign at UC Berkeley (click here). The CWP and other NIF grantees defame Israel as an apartheid state.

Some NIF grantees lobby foreign governments to prosecute Israeli officials for "war crimes" (click here). The CWP endorses the Free Gaza Movement, the pro-Hamas coalition that organized the Gaza Flotilla. An Adalah press release supporting Gaza flotilla participants was written by Greta Berlin, a senior leader of the Free Gaza Movement and spokesperson of the pro-Hamas flotilla stunt (click here).

This delegitimization campaign, aiming to turn Israel into an international pariah, has become a strategic threat to Israel (click here) and is embraced by Hamas and Hezbollah (click here). The NIF funding of groups which libel and delegitimize Israel stands in sharp contrast to NIF's official claims of being a Zionist organization, supporting a "Jewish and democratic state," and telling donors it helps and "loves Israel" and "opposes BDS." When NGO Monitor documented these contradictions, as summarized in its ad (click here), NIF's leader, Daniel Sokatch, did not respond to any of the facts presented in the ad. Rather than acknowledging and rectifying the serious problems, Sokatch responded with a smear campaign against NGO Monitor (see NIF's response ad here). This is not the first time that the NIF has resorted to a smear campaign against its critics instead of dealing with the facts (click here).

NIF claims to be concerned with the alienation of young American Jews from Israel and blames that alienation on Israel's "misconduct". In reality, the NIF, through its grantees, actually fuels the delegitimization campaign, the goal of which is nothing less than the dismantling of the Jewish state. It simultaneously distorts and weakens Jewish understanding and identity among young Jews, while it undermines support for Jews and Israel among non-Jews as well.

The Jewish community needs to understand the role that NIF plays in turning many Jews and non-Jews against Israel.

We need to withhold our support from NIF until it stops funding groups which defame Israel.

An NIF program participant's account (The inside links are insightful): NIF Whistleblower Exposes NIF's Role in Demonization

To view a PDF file of New Israel Fund Claims versus Actuality, click here.

Contact Natan Nestel by email at natannestel@gmail.com

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THEY AREN'T JUST THE GOLDEN GLOBES
Posted by Leslie Korshak, August 19, 2010.
This was written by Rosetta Stine and posted on her website:
http://rosettastine.blogspot.com/2010/08/ they-arent-just-golden-globes.html
 

This is both accurate as well as a sad good-bye.

The Foreign Press Association (FPA) is a nasty bunch working on their own very anti Israel agenda.

As far back as 2002, during the height of the one sided bombings (Intifada) they gathered and threatened the remarkable man who ran the government press office. The sad part, is that after years and years of fair, devoted service both to the State and the press, he's leaving and will be sorely missed.
 

Each year, the GPO throws a private cocktail party and one on one with the Prime Minister. In 2002 the FPA got together and attempted to blackmail the office and the State. What follows is direct from the GPO memo:

Only second to Washington is there more foreign press in Jerusalem 800 press cards and 2,500 more to visiting press. On average passes are distributed in less than 15 minutes...try to cash a check in that amount of time! Often, these press corps bring their families along, requiring housing. During that time the country imported over 25 bullet proof cars from an office open 24/7 including the Sabbath holidays.

The problem began (at least overtly) when the GPO refused passes to PA film crews who went to the west bank and Gaza where they staged events while depriving Israeli crews employment, No other country on earth allows this, especially during all the bombings and security needs.

The FPA threatened in newspaper interviews to blackmail Israel, tell known untruths and deny the country's right to even exist. How did Mr. Seamens handle this? With his usual aplomb, that's how.

The FPA "demanded" the GPO rescind the situation (as if it was Israel blowing up children)They even turned to the Knesset (senate) and the President, both investigated and found in favor by 1005 the actions of the GPO. And so, the FPA turned to open slander, speaking the PA as gospel, using first person (one huge no-no) and threatened again publicly to send Mr. Seameans "straight to hell" Under the circumstances, a clear death threat.

At the gathering, the FPA threatened to boycott the party, arrive late and show film of themselves being locked out. Mr. Seameans is one smart fellow. No party, no speech and what did he bring to the event? His infant son. The quote of the night? "What do I care, my baby loves me. That folks, is the Israeli way, at least it's Mr. Seameans way.

While I have never disagreed with PM Netanyahu since his days at the UN (When the world wondered who could possibly follow Mr Abba Eban) He did and went one better. I believe he is making a terrible mistake here. There is only one Dan Seameans and the country can ill afford his absence. Please rethink this Sir.
 

So when you watch the Golden Globes know they are only a sham to cover their real work, and please judge their "news" accordingly.

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ANTI-SEMITISM SOARS IN HOLLAND
Posted by Isi Leibler, August 19, 2010.
 

Like many Jews, as a youngster I associated Holland with windmills and tulips and a heroic people which bravely defended Jews during the Nazi occupation.

Alas, I subsequently learned that the record of the Dutch towards the Jews was nothing of the sort. There were tens of thousands of Dutch righteous gentiles who risked their lives to save Jews but there were far more collaborators, over 25,000 of whom even volunteered for the Waffen SS. Overall, the Dutch authorities willingly assisted in the deportation of the Jews. Anne Frank and her family were amongst those denounced to the Nazis. Of the 140,000 Jews living in the Netherlands before the war, over 100,000 were murdered.

Today, there is a popular misconception that the Dutch are an easygoing, tolerant, multi-cultured people.

In truth, Dutch society has become polarized as a consequence of the massive influx of non-Western immigrants, predominantly Muslim, who have shattered social stability. Muslims currently comprise one million out of a 16 million population, a disproportionate number of whom have police records.

Together with indigenous anti-Semites, some radical Muslims have effectively exploited the culture of permissiveness to violently promote their objectives.

Verbal and physical violence has escalated, climaxing in November 2004 with the brutal public street murder in Amsterdam of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh who was shot and stabbed to death by Mohammed Bouyeri, a Muslim radical.

Although this had a major impact on Dutch society, it did not become the watershed one may have expected. However the status of the 30,000 members of the Jewish community, already subjected to increasing anti-Semitic incitement and violence primarily emanating from the Moroccan Muslim community, continued to deteriorate.

The leading daily newspaper NRC Handelsblad published an article in June stating that anti-Semitism in areas of Amsterdam has become the norm rather than the exception. It identified areas in Amsterdam in which Jews with skullcaps or distinctive garb cannot walk in the streets without being affronted, spat at or even attacked.

In May, an outdoor commemoration ceremony for the last transport of 3,000 Jewish children deported during the Holocaust was disrupted by bikers shrieking "Heil Hitler" during the recitation of Kaddish.

Anti-Semitism also manifests itself in anti-Israel demonstrations where cries of "Hamas Hamas — Jews to the gas"; "Jew cancer"; and "Hitler let one get away!" are frequently heard. Football stadiums have become notorious arenas for anti-Israel and anti-Semitic chants. About half of the registered criminal utterances reported on the internet throughout Holland in 2009 were against Jews. It is believed that if full records were accessible, the proportion would be much higher.
 

LAST MONTH, the 280-year-old synagogue in Weesp became the first Jewish house of worship in Europe since the war obliged to cancel Sabbath services after the police had warned congregants of threats of violence.

In a recent letter to members of Parliament, the Jewish community stated that anti-Semitism was rampant, noting that the Jewish community is obliged to provide its own security at schools and all public functions, the costs for which have become unbearable.

Surveys among teachers in the major cities indicate that one out of five teachers have difficulties in relating to the Holocaust because of the hostile response from Muslim students. The Chairman of the Orthodox Rabbinate, Binyomin Jacobs, protested that "today there are many schools which simply stop providing lessons relating to WWII and the Holocaust due to fear of negative reactions from pupils from Muslim backgrounds".

Jewish schoolchildren feel intimidated and the school authorities are either indifferent or unable to assist them. To avoid harassment, some children are obliged to change schools and even hide their Jewish identity.

A few weeks ago a local Jewish TV station (Joodse Omroep) broadcast scenes of anti-Semitic harassment in the streets recorded by a hidden camera which followed a rabbi accompanied by two students. This provided chilling testimony of the intimidation to which Jews are subjected.

In response, the Dutch police announced that they might use "decoy" Jews — police dressed in traditional Jewish garb — to entrap anti-Semitic hooligans. Rabbi Jacobs responded by stating that such initiatives would be futile unless accompanied by greater emphasis on education, stressing that not only Muslims were engaged in anti-Semitic agitation.

"I witness Dutch non-Muslim youngsters also shouting at me in the street" he stated.

Ironically, the major escalation of anti-Semitism in Amsterdam took place between 2001-2010, when Marius Job Cohen, a Jew, was mayor. Cohen's grandparents were murdered in the Holocaust but he frequently expresses indifference to his Jewish origins. Now as leader of the Dutch Labor party he participates in attacks demonizing Israel as exemplified in the party's platform in the recent elections.

Such behavior towards Israel is particularly shameful coming from the country whose UN peacekeeping force in 1995 in Srebrenica stood by while 8,000 Bosnian men and boys were massacred by the Serbs (there are reports that some even took part in seperating the women from the men). The Dutch peacekeepers then fled to Zagreb, where they held a beer and music fest in the presence of the crown Prince and the prime minister.
 

HOWEVER, THERE is now a potential for positive change on the political horizon. At the recent polls, contrary to expectations, the Dutch Freedom Party (PVV) headed by Geert Wilders surged from its pre election nine seats to winning 24 out of the 150 seat Dutch parliament.

Nicknamed Mozart because of his blond hair and voted politician of the year in 2007, Wilders displays contempt for the hypocritical political correctness displayed toward Islam that has enveloped Europe. He resolutely calls for tough action against intimidation and threats from Islamic fundamentalists.

He describes Muslim migrants as a "Trojan Horse" and warns of the danger of Europe being transformed into Eurabia and European civilization coming to an end.

Wilders is an outspoken friend of the Jewish people and considers Israel to be "the West's first line of defense". He lived in Israel for two years and has visited the Jewish state more than 40 times.

Contrary to defamatory allegations directed against him, Wilders abhors fascism and publicly condemned politicians like France's Jean-Marie Le Pen, the late Haider and other racists with whom he swears he would never associate.

His controversial call for the banning of the Koran (which he compares to Mein Kampf and claims incites to violence) and the production of a film depicting the brutality and denial of human rights prevailing in Muslim countries led to his being charged with incitement and hatred. The court proceedings became transformed into a political arena when the judge refused to hear the majority of witnesses Wilders presented.

Should Wilders be convicted of promoting hate speech it will have problematic implications in a country like Holland where calls for "death to the Jews" are regular occurrences and rarely prosecuted.

The trial outcome will also be a curtain raiser on what to expect from other European countries in the years ahead.

Contact Isi Leibler by email at editor@WordfromJerusalem.com. This article was published yesterday in the Jerusalem Post
(www.jpost.com/Home/Article.aspx?id= 185195) and is archived at
http://wordfromjerusalem.com/?p=2371

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FROM ISRAEL: SEARCHING FACTS
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 19, 2010.
 

These times are fraught with genuine danger, coupled with confusion and frustration. And so, balanced reactions seem to be in short supply. Sometimes — perhaps because of a sense of being powerless or overwhelmed — there is a dangerous tendency to downplay or ignore a situation that merits genuine attention and action. But, paradoxically, at other times responses to a situation of serious import become overwrought. Not infrequently, the media promotes these latter responses.

~~~~~~~~~~

For a very long time, the world has been lamentably apathetic with regard to Iran's intention to become a nuclear nation.

But in recent days — certainly in the US and here in Israel — there has been a media explosion of reports regarding statements made by John Bolton, former US Ambassador to the UN and a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

Bolton has been speaking with regard to the Russian-built nuclear reactor at Bushehr, Iran, into which Russia is now scheduled to place low level radioactive rods, ostensibly for purposes of generating energy for peaceful domestic purposes.

The possibility exists that Iran will utilize the rods — which are supposed to be given back to Russia when spent — for further uranium enrichment on the way to making a bomb. This would not turn Iran into a nuclear nation, but it is potentially another step along the way. However, I note that there is an alternate opinion maintaining that Russia's own reputation would be on the line if Iran did not return the rods, as per written agreement, so that Russia will monitor the situation closely. In addition to which, the very public visibility of this reactor is said to make it more difficult for Iran to utilize its rods for devious ends.

In any event, it is, as Bolton has pointed out, a "victory" for Iran that Russia — which had contracted with Iran in 1995 to construct the Bushehr reactor, but stalled for a considerable time in completing the facility — is finally about to place those rods.

There is no ready clue as to why Russia decided to go ahead just now. To many, this is an abysmal signal with regard to Russia's willingness to cooperate in blocking a nuclear Iran. It may simply be, as some maintain, that Russia — which wishes to sustain a reputation as a vendor of nuclear reactors for peaceful purposes — concluded, in a predictably self-serving move, that it could afford to stall no longer.

~~~~~~~~~~

Bolton has made some very specific statements with regard to Bushehr, which have been picked up and inflated by the media. (Some of you have already written to me about this and received private responses.)

Bolton's contention is that we are facing a deadline only days away. For, he says, once the fuel is loaded into the reactor (with loading scheduled to begin August 21), Israel would no longer hit it for fear of releasing widespread radiation.

Many people — aided by some of those media reports — are drawing the conclusion from this that if Israel doesn't attack Iran in the next couple of days, all chance to do so will have been lost. Yet Bolton hasn't said this — if you pay careful attention to his words, you see that he only addresses the issue of this one reactor.

See, for example:
http://www.newsmax.com/InsideCover/ John--Bolton--Iran--Nuclear--israel/2010/08/ 13/id/367449

It would be reasonable to conclude that Israel's opportunity to effectively strike Iran at all would be lost after this deadline only if destruction of that particular reactor were a critical and necessary part of Israel's attack plans.

Right now, shining a bit of light on this issue is of considerable importance.

~~~~~~~~~~

A fact that is frequently neglected when there is talk of an Israeli attack on Iran, is that Israel does not have the ability military to completely destroy Iran's capability to become a nuclear power. I've heard this directly from Israeli generals here. The best that we could do would be to cripple that capability for some (disputed) period of time.

There may be multiple ways to cripple Iran, with hitting Bushehr not necessarily critical at all.

Among those of the opinion that it is not critical is Ilan Berman, who is vice president of the American Foreign Policy Council; editor of The Journal of International Security Affairs; and author of Tehran Rising: Iran's Challenge to the United States.

Berman says that the enrichment plants are the real backbone of Iranian efforts to develop nuclear weapons capability; his own well-informed speculation is that these reactors would be Israel's primary targets.

"It's not at all clear that Bushehr would be a high value target, because it's only tangentially related to any conceivable Iranian nuclear weapons program. My suspicion is that this is not a game-changer. This isn't going to give Iran enough fissile material for a bomb overnight."

On this, see: www.jpost.com/
IranianThreat/News/Article.aspx?id=185060

Berman told me that he hasn't "talked to anyone who even thinks Bushehr is high up on the target list." What is more, he has spoken to "technical experts [who] say there are ways to get at a facility of that type without unleashing radioactive fallout."

He believes the main "victory" for Iran in having this reactor up and running is PR.

~~~~~~~~~~

The remaining question for me, then, is where John Bolton, a highly knowledgeable man whom I respect enormously, is going with this. I have already made the point that the media, for its own purposes, inflated Bolton's statements. But Bolton's comments, on their own, seem uncharacteristically inflammatory rather than straight-talking.

According to the JPost, which had communication directly with Bolton, he referred to the start-up of the reactor as "a huge threshold." But — as I have reflected above — that's not what I'm hearing elsewhere.

I am particularly unsettled that, according to the JPost, he also said, "If Israel was right to destroy the Osirak reactor [in Iraq in 1981], is it right to allow this one to continue? You can't have it both ways."

If this is an accurate quote, it is also grossly unfair. The situation vis-a-vis Iraq 19 years ago was vastly different from what we face with regard to Iran now, and nowhere is it written that our response must or should be the same.

~~~~~~~~~~

As Prime Minster Netanyahu does not confide state secrets to me, I do not know whether or not Israel will be attacking Iran in the next several months or more — if indeed Netanyahu, who is undoubtedly in the process of measuring a number of shifting factors (such as the imminent departure of Secretary of Defense Gates), knows with certainty himself yet.

But what I can say with a reasonable degree of assurance is that if we decide to (and my own inclination is to hope that indeed we do), it is still possible — the hysteria of the last few days notwithstanding.

~~~~~~~~~~

I wrote here about the self-serving attitude of Russia, but, while the stance of Russia may be a tad more blatant, it is hardly alone within the European community.

In spite of a direct request from Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel remains resistant to closing the Hamburg-based Iranian bank (EIH), which, according to the JPost, "has reportedly funneled over $1 billion into Iran's military and ballistic weapons programs."

The EIH bank, which is banned in America, is classified by the US Treasury Department as a terrorist entity because of its involvement with nuclear proliferation and terror activities.

Germany's defense, transmitted to the JPost by a spokesman for Merkel, is that the bank, located in Hamburg as it is, is subject to very strict controls by the German bank monitoring authority.

Right. Germany is Iran's number one trading partner, and is charged by critics with putting short-term trade profits ahead of the security of the West. The governments of France and the UK have joined with the US in pressuring Germany to close down the bank.

~~~~~~~~~~

Netanyahu has just returned from a visit to Greece, part of a process of courting this nation as a stronger strategic Mediterranean ally in the face of the rupture of our long-standing relationship with Turkey. The warming of our interaction with Greece, which has been fairly pro-Palestinian in its stance, is seen as promising.

There is the issue of tourism, as, until very recently, Israelis were in the habit of vacationing in Turkey in large numbers; Greece presents what is in many ways an attractive low cost alternative. Of significance beyond this is the possibility for increased shared intelligence and Greek purchases of Israeli military hardware, as well as growth in commercial trade. Additionally, Greece might serve as an intermediary with certain Arab nations.

~~~~~~~~~~

The Greek Orthodox church has considerable holdings in Israel, and expresses deep interest in this region. In light of the decades of enmity between Turkey and Greece, the Greeks can only be pleased with Israel's expressed interest in an enhanced relationship.

Greek foreign minister, Dimitris Droutsas, while seeking to reassure the Arab world in a radio interview, sustained a refreshingly positive tone towards Israel:

Improved Greek-Israeli ties were "for the good of Greece and all of the Middle East region... and do not exclude our close cooperation with the Arab world, and particularly our Palestinian friends.

"Our rapprochement with Israel is not opposed to our traditional relationship of exceptional trust with the Arab world," he said, noting that the improved ties with Israel had been discussed with "all our friends in the Arab world."

Droutsas indicated that meetings with Netanyahu were "very useful and entirely successful because we achieved the fixed objectives: deepening of relations and cooperation with Israel."

~~~~~~~~~~

Another ship bent on "breaking the Gaza blockade" has plans to leave from Lebanon on Sunday. This ship, the Miriam, will carry some 50 to 75 female "activists" who declare themselves set on delivering "cancer medication, books and toys." These "humanitarian" items, according to organizer Samar al-Hajj, would be carried only in "symbolic" amounts — which automatically makes clear the true intention of the "activists."

This ship, however, is one we are not likely to have to deal with, as the Cypriot ambassador to Lebanon has already told AP that the ship will be turned back when it reaches Cyprus. "We decided that such a ship will not be allowed to enter Cyprus and if such a Gaza-bound ship docks in a Cypriot port the crew and the passengers will be deported to their country of origin," Kyriacos Kouros said. Cyprus has a "moral and legal responsibility" to those ships in its waters; there is concern that a ship intent on challenging the blockade could endanger lives, as well as "regional peace and stability."

~~~~~~~~~~

This is "cute," metaphorically speaking:

Islamic officials in Jerusalem had obtained permission recently to enter the ancient Mamilla Muslim cemetery in order to clean and restore tombstones. While there, the Muslims erected 300 "fictitious graves" on a neighboring plot of land, in what the Jerusalem Municipality is calling "one of the largest deceptions in recent years," perpetrated in order to "illegally seize state lands." The Municipality, saying it has "indisputable evidence," has released documentation that includes both photos and a time line.

The fake tombs and headstones are being demolished under the supervision of the Antiquities Authority, which sent experts to the site.

In an act of enormous chutzpa, the Islamic Movement is holding a demonstration denouncing the Municipality for "desecration of a holy site." They are without shame.

For me, this relatively minor incident is one more signal lesson regarding the games that the Muslims have no compunctions about playing.

~~~~~~~~~~

A fire broke out in Bucharest's Giulesti Maternity Hospital in Romania on Monday, killing four premature babies and seriously injuring others. Yesterday, Dr. Yosef Hayek, head of the burns unit at Sheba Hospital in Tel Hashomer and two other staff members flew to Romania to treat seven premies, weighing between 1 and 2.5 kilos (2.2 to 5.5 pounds) who were burnt on some 40% to 80% of their bodies. (How horrible!)

The doctors brought basic medical equipment with them, will call for more as needed, and may bring some of the babies back to Israel for further care.

And here we have a signal lesson on how Israelis routinely respond, lending succor and assistance to suffering individuals within the international community.

~~~~~~~~~~

Forty year old mathematician Prof. Elon Lindenstrauss, of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, was on today awarded the 2010 Fields Medal. Considered the "Nobel Prize" of mathematics, it is granted to world's leading mathematicians aged 40 and below.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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REPAIRING VANDALIZED BIBLICAL TOMB OF JOSEPH IN SHECHEM
Posted by David Ha'ivri, August 19, 2010.

Shechem (Nabulus) Aug. 19, 2010: Chief Rabbis of Israel rabbi Shlomo Amar and rabbi Yona Metzger visited Joseph's tomb in Shechem and called on the authorities to rebuild the site that was overrun and vandalized by local Arab residents in riots of Oct. 2000, ten years ago.

View this video

 

The city of Shechem (Nabulus), situated in area A is under "Palestinian" control and closed off to Jewish worshipers since 2000. Over the past two and half years Shomron residents under the leadership of local Mayor Gershon Mesika have lobbied the government to allow repair work to be held at the site. In July this year Jewish workers were allowed to enter the site to conduct minor repairs, paint the building and clear the court yard. See attached photos.

Since Nov. 2007 Monthly midnight visits for Jewish worshipers have been arranged with escort of the Israeli army. On those visits hundreds of Jews bus in in bullet protected buses from around the country. People sign up for these visits and wait for months for their turn to come up.

The Shomron Liaison Office is working in cooperation with Ariel University Center's architectural dept. on a contest for architectural students to draw plans to rebuild the site of the tomb of Joseph in high standard and beauty that will be fitting for a sage of such importance to the Jewish people.

For more information, contact:

David Ha'ivri
Executive Director
The Shomron Liaison Office
Tel: +97239368146
Cell: +972526071690
USA: 1-512-961-7059

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CIVILIZATIONAL WAR
Posted by Bill Warner, August 19, 2010.
 

THE CIVILIZATION OF ISLAM

One of the clearest lessons about Islam is found in the Sharia. The largest part of the Sharia is devoted to regulating the life of Muslims down to the smallest detail. There is no aspect of life that is not regulated-sex, food, art, business, education, prayer, manners, speech and how to think and not to think. There is no aspect of life that is outside the power of Sharia-religion, politics, ethics, culture are included. The Sharia is the operating manual for a complete civilization. Islam is complete within itself and needs nothing from the outside.

The Sharia has one other quality that is as important as the totality of its scope. The civilization of Sharia is not just different, it contradicts our civilization.

Inside Islam justice, religion, politics, law, human rights and compassion do not mean what they mean to us. All of these ideas are based on the principles of submission and duality as found in the Sharia.

OUR CIVILIZATION

Our civilization is based on the principles of the Golden Rule and critical thought. We do not always fulfill the principles, but they are the ideals we strive for, and can be used for debate and self-criticism to correct and improve our culture.

Our principles lead to the ideals of critical thought, self-criticism, equality of all peoples before the law, freedom of thought and ideas, freedom of religion, public debate, separation of church and state, liberal democracy and a free-ranging humor.

These are beautiful ideals and they are worth keeping and striving towards. Do we meet them? No, but what is more important they contradict the Sharia. It is one thing to fail to achieve these ideals, but it is entirely another to see them disappear as a public option under the impact of Sharia. Sharia law limits critical thought, self-criticism, equality of all peoples before the law, freedom of thought and ideas, freedom of religion, public debate, separation of church and state, liberal democracy and humor.

CIVILIZATIONAL WAR

Part of the genius of Islam is the totality of Sharia, which includes a concept of war that attacks the host civilization at every aspect of its being. In modern times the military power of Islam is weak, but this is more than compensated by its ability to attack along legal and cultural lines under the guise of being a religion.

As Sharia is applied to a society, the host civilization is annihilated in each and every manifestation of culture. This annihilation is demonstrated by a peculiar fact about the history of Islamic countries-part of it is missing. Afghanistan used to be a Buddhist civilization. We see its remnants in ruins and fragments such as the Bamiyan Buddhas that were destroyed by the Taliban. Who knows the Buddhist history of Afghanistan? Practically speaking, it does not exist. Who knows the history of how Turkey, North Africa, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq went from being Christian to Islamic?

We don't know the history because of the total annihilation of the past cultures by Sharia law. As time goes on customs, law, art, literature, and ethics of the host culture are replaced by Islamic values under the application of Sharia. The result is that there is nothing left of the history before the implementation of Sharia law.

There is a second aspect of this annihilation-the dhimmitude of the Kafirs (non-Muslims) remaining inside Islamic society. If you talk to Christians who are left in Islamic countries, they are an abused people who are unable to fight back after centuries of suffering and degradation under Sharia law. They are not supported by other Kafirs and are left to suffer under the oppression that will eliminate their few numbers. Whatever memory they have of the past is ignored by those who should be defending them.

If we are to go down the Sharia road, history teaches that it has always led to an Islamic mono-culture. In the end, there is no such thing as a little Sharia.

Bill Warner is Director of the Center for the Study of Political Islam. Contact him at bw@politicalislam.com and visit their website at http://www.politicalislam.com/. This article was posted today at American Thinker.

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WHY HASBARA MATTERS
Posted by David Isaac, August 19, 2010.

In a recent article, Daniel Greenfield (his extraordinarily fine blog appears under the pseudonym "Sultan Knish") criticizes "the great obsession" of the Israeli government and its defenders with "hasbara," or PR. They're caught up with the idea that Israel must do a better job explaining itself to the world, he says. Greenfield argues that such people miss the point.

"Trying to win the PR war in order to be able to fight the terrorists, has been a common mistake in the Israeli paradigm. Dispensing with that paradigm as quickly as possible and winning the fight, is the only way to get the monkey of hate off Israel's back," he writes.

There are several weaknesses in Greenfield's analysis, not least of which is his assertion that the Israeli government is obsessed with hasbara. To understand that Israel is anything but obsessed, one has only to look back at decades of articles written by Shmuel Katz.

Since the 1970s, one hears the same unheeded cry for the establishment of a proper Ministry of Information, one that would wage a concerted effort to counter the Arabs' "many-faceted campaign of denigration throughout the world, openly aiming at the demonization of Israel as a state and of the Jews as a nation." But as Shmuel often pointed out, no government, whether right or left, took seriously its obligation of creating an effective machinery for countering Arab propaganda. (Yes, in 2009 Israel established a small, poorly funded Ministry of Information and Diaspora Affairs — not a serious effort.)

But the main point on which Greenfield misses the mark is his argument that Israel must first change reality before hasbara can even matter. Greenfield's recipe: First win the fight, then kickstart hasbara. But hasbara efforts must be an integral part of winning the fight. Israel has yet to take the propaganda war to its enemies — Shmuel described Israel's efforts to date as a skiff taking on a battleship — and the result has seriously weakened Israel's ability to wage traditional war.

It's not hard to think of examples. Take Israel's self-limiting response to attack, such as stringent rules of engagement. Recently, Israeli soldiers were told they couldn't open fire, even in the air, at Arabs who were stoning them. During the flotilla episode, Israeli soldiers boarded with paintball guns.

Such behavior isn't new. In The Hollow Peace (Dvir, 1981), Shmuel traces how Israel's failure to make its case led its leaders to forgo a pre-emptive air strike during the Yom Kippur War.

In fact, when the knife was at Israel's very throat, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence would not permit Elazar to mobilise all the reserves. The reason has been explained over and over again: the government did not want to arouse in the world the impression that Israel was the aggressor. It was therefore decided to allow Egypt and Syria the full advantage of surprise — and hundreds of soldiers on the fronts that collapsed paid with their lives.

In so doing the government in effect admitted to its historic failure in the conduct of foreign policy and in its defence of the Israeli cause. In 1948 the Arabs launched a campaign to exterminate the newly-arisen Israel; in 1967 they made a great fanfare, along with their preparations for war, of their overt intent to annihilate Israel; and now, after all that, in 1973, when it had become perfectly obvious that they were about to pounce yet again, the government of Israel thought the world would believe that the aggressor was Israel and none other. The members of the Cabinet were apparently convinced that the Arabs had succeeded by means of their propaganda in turning the truth inside out, and depicting themselves as the historic victim and Israel as the historic aggressor.

So here we have an example of Israel's leaders, while obviously not convinced by Arab propaganda, nevertheless convinced of its success, so much so, that they willingly waited to be attacked, a decision which might have cost them the country.

Winston Churchill, Britain's great wartime leader, understood the importance of fighting on the propaganda front. As Shmuel wrote in "Tinkering With Hasbara" (Aug. 16, 2001):

When Winston Churchill became British prime minister in World War II, he at once tackled the problem of war information — of hasbara. He appointed a minister of information and — over the protest of foreign minister Anthony Eden — a ministry with a worldwide reach was established. Eden did not realize that no Foreign Office is built and specialized and equipped for the very large task of war information. Indeed, no country at war in our time can do without a separate department for information abroad — and Israel least of all.

Churchill's Ministry of Information became the largest in the country, outside of the war ministry.

Greenfield argues that hasbara won't be successful "because you can't argue with people's prejudices," adding, "It is always good to know how to answer a bigot, so long as you understand that you will not convince the bigot of anything." This is an argument that Shmuel encountered in his day.

In "A Crying Need" (Aug. 6, 1982), he writes:

Apologists for the present system point triumphantly to the frightening evidence of an international campaign of distortions, lies and libels, motivated, at least in part, by old-fashioned anti-Semitism. You cannot, they say, break through this wall of hatred, whatever you do. Of course, Israel cannot break through the wall of hatred. But its duty is to arm its friends and well-wishers.

Here Shmuel reveals that hasbara plays many roles, one of which is to supply its friends with "ammunition for speedy and effective response." Hasbara doesn't only put the lie to your opponents' claims, it strengthens those already on your side, reinforcing their belief in the justness of your cause. It provides, in Shmuel's words, "the whys and the wherefores of our existence, our actions and our beliefs."

Lastly, when Shmuel talked about a ministry of information, or a "machinery," as he put it, capable of countering Arab propaganda, he was at the same time talking about the message of that machinery. The two were inseparable in his mind. For Shmuel, that message contained three main pillars: That Jewish rights to the Land of Israel were indisputable, that the Arabs were not interested in peace but rather bent on Israel's destruction, and that the "Palestinian people" were a "monstrous fiction" — "perhaps the greatest hoax of the 20th century."

For an information policy to be successful, it must be based on a principled policy. If the prime minister one day rejects a Palestinian State and then the next day embraces it, an information policy has no hope of success.

If hasbara is to be built, it must be built on bedrock.

David Isaac is editor of the Shmuel Katz website: www.shmuelkatz.com. Contact him at david_isaac@shmuelkatz.com

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ISRAEL THE BEAUTIFUL: A SABRA PLANT MID-SUMMER
Posted by Yehoshua Halevi, August 19, 2010.

A sabra plant in mid-summer form.
 

This is one of Yehoshua Halevi's Golden Light Images.

HOW I GOT THE SHOT:

At the height of summer, I continue to seek out color and form in nature, even though Israel's two-season landscape is often listless and parched in July and August. One reliable subject is the sabra plant, known in English as the prickly pear cactus or Indian fig, which thrives in a wide range of climates, including some of the hottest, driest regions of the Middle East. I've captured these plants in more photogenic form when they blossom with an array of colored flowers in spring and early summer. The flowers give way to the oval-shaped, thorn-covered fruit which resembles a pear.

This detail of one plant caught my attention because it is somewhat unusual to see so many fruits growing so orderly from a single pad, as the flat, fleshy part of the sabra is called. I was also drawn to the bright reds and greens, one of my favorite complementary color groupings in nature. The two smaller pads growing from the same "trunk" give a nice balance to the composition by dividing it into thirds.

Sabra fruit is grown commercially and the plants have been used as natural borders to keep out intruders, not unlike the modern usage of barbed wire. I mounted a zoom lens on my camera and went to work, shooting and admiring the plant from a respectful distance.

TECHNICAL DATA: Nikon D-300, 18-200 zoom at 31mm, f16 at 1/200 sec., ISO 400.

Contact Yehoshua Halevi by email at smile@goldenlightimages.com and visit his website:
http://www.goldenlightimages.com. Reproductions of his work as cards, calenders and posters may be purchased at
http://www.cafepress.com/halevi18. He is available for public relations and editorial photography, celebrations and simchas.

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ISRAEL'S ECONOMY AND SECURITY
Posted by Moshe Feiglin, August 19, 2010.
 

Israel's economic and security might are at their highest point ever, while its moral standing and ability to preserve the legitimacy of its existence are at an all-time low.

Defense Minister Barak announced this week that he has authorized Israel's purchase of F35 fighter jets from the US. The defense department debated long and hard over whether it is worthwhile for Israel to invest billions for the new jets. Traditionally, the purchase of new jets would set off a mini-celebration in Israel. But this time, it looks like there is nothing to celebrate.

The main argument used time and again to explain why Israel must retreat or why we must not attack Iran is that we will not be able to manage without the American-made spare parts for our fighter jets. This claim is not true. Israel can and does acquire most (and possibly all) of its required spare parts on the open international market — at better prices than from their source.

Israel's continued reliance on American weapons is the perpetuation of the self-loathing mentality that bases Israel's existence on its big brother across the ocean.

It is not even clear that Israel needs these jets. What then, motivates the Defense Minister to authorize their purchase?

The disengagement of the Jews from reality — a.k.a. G-d — leads to its disengagement from its Land. This process of disengagement inevitably results in Israel making "painful concessions." Before these concessions, the US always sends some new weapons system our way, in an attempt to ease the pressure on Israel's leadership and to help it convince the Israeli public to swallow the bitter pill.

Israel should have neutralized the Iranian threat a long time ago, with or without the F35. It did not do so, and probably will not do so until the nuclear reactor is activated in a few days — not because of lack of operational capabilities but due to lack of moral/societal/political resilience. The F35 purchase will not add to this resilience. It will only to serve to make Israel more mentally subservient to the US, aggravating an already bad situation.

Does this mean that Israel should not use American weapons?

An authentic Jewish Israel will use excellent products from around the world — both material and cultural. The authentic Jewish State will conduct diverse and widespread commerce. Its international relations will be based upon mutual respect. Where needed, it will also engage in strategic alliances with other nations. But all of these foreign relations will be predicated upon the focal point — Israel's immutable connection to its G-d.

It was not difficult to anticipate the future of the relations between Israel and Turkey. The reason for the intelligence gaffe on the flotilla was not operational, but conceptual. Trapped in the conceptual world of 'peace,' the IDF could not prepare for war. Israel, incapable of understanding the theological roots of the conflict and the faith that lies at the foundation of all cultures was dazzled by secular Turkey, misreading developments in the country.

Exchanging Greece for Turkey is the repetition of the same mistake. Leadership that does not understand the basic hatred of Esau for Jacob, will continue to rely on alliances on shifting sands. No strategic alliances can help a nation that has lost the faith in its right to exist. Cutting-edge weapons won't help, either.

Israel must prepare itself for the future both economically and militarily.

Israel's economy must evolve so that it will become basically self-sufficient. The world is marching toward major crisis that will decrease Israel's export opportunities. The more that Israel's economy can absorb local products, the less damage we will incur from the approaching crisis. For our long term economic independence as well, we must encourage the manufacture of local products — even if we can currently buy them abroad for less.

This is even more true for weapons development. The Israeli Lavie fighter jet project (eliminated by Yitzchak Rabin) was cancelled due to economic considerations. But if today, the backbone of Israel's Air Force had been based on Israeli jets, it may just be that the Iranian threat would not exist. Not only because of the operational capabilities of the Lavie, but mainly because it would have freed us of our dependence-mentality on the US. Even now, Israel still has options to produce its own jet fighters, with the cooperation and funding of other countries that do not wish to be dependant on American weapons. The choice of the F35 testifies to serious cognitive paralysis.

Israel must make G-d its focal point as it adapts its culture to its Jewish values. When it will do so, it will conduct itself naturally, logically and successfully on every plane.

Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) is a group of people inside the Likud party who want to see Israel adopt a more Jewish character. Moshe Feiglin, its cofounder, has emphatically said he does not want a theocracy, but he does want a State based on Jewish values. The Manhigut Yehudit website address is http://www.manhigut.org. To learn more about Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) and to read their plan for Israel's future, visit www.jewishisrael.org. Or contact Shmuel Sackett, International Director (516) 330-4922 (cell)

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THE SHIN BET WON'T LEAVE MY HUSBAND ALONE
Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, August 18, 2010.

I am deeply ashamed of what was once a most honored security agency formed to protect the people of Israel. That changed once the politicians of the Leftist Labor Party found they could use the GSS to intimidate and conduct dirty tricks against the political Right.

Soon, Court Judges were recruited to go along with illegal detention — of Israelis.

The once honored Police began to cooperate in a way that reminded older Jews of the Nazi Stasi agents and, in some cases, methods used by the Gestapo and certain nationals in other European countries to entrap Jews.

Much of this ugliness comes from politicians who want dictatorial control of the Israeli people and every government agency. To be fair, there are more honest agents than not — who risk their lives every day to protect the people and the nation of Israel.

Then there are the politically biased directors who owe their high positions to crooked politicians whose greed for power has poisoned their role of government service.

Biased courts, political security agencies were not what Israel was supposed to be but, regrettably, it is.

Israel was NOT supposed to be like her Muslim Arab neighbors, with hostile security agents mixed in with the populace but, those methods have, unfortunately, become quite common in Israel.

There was a time when the people loved their Army, Shin Bet, Mossad because they were the peoples' protectors. Then the politicians got their hands on these power structures and now people fear them.

I wonder if the commanders and politicians ever think about what they are doing to their own nation by adopting the roles of thugs and enemies of the people whom they are sworn to protect.

The article below was written by Uzi Baruch; it appeared August 12, 2020 in Arutz-7 (www.Israel National News).

 

(Israelnationalnews.com) Chaim Perlman's wife, Keren, had trouble sleeping last night due to her excitement after hearing of the court decision to release her husband to house arrest yesterday. "I look forward to the moment when Chaim will come out of the dark hole where he is right now. Our children miss him so much," she told Arutz-7 in an exclusive interview. Perlman has been held for nearly a month on suspicions of involvement in the killing of four Arabs ten years ago.

Following the decision of Petah Tikva Magistrates Court Judge Nahum Sternlicht, this moment seems closer than ever, but Keren, a devoted wife, is trying not to celebrate too early. Together with faith and hope, she is trying to keep both feet on the ground.

"The Shin Bet [Israel's General Security Service] is the most powerful body in the country," says Keren Perlman. "During the court hearings, I saw cases where the very fact that the request to extend Chaim's detention came from the Shin Bet, was enough to make judges automatically acquiesce and prolong Chaim's detention, even though there was no material proof to support the decision. Judge Sternlicht is a worthy judge, but there aren't too many judges like him in Israeli courts, and I would not be surprised if the Shin Bet finds a judge who is more 'agreeable' who will extend Chaim's detention for a few more days."

When Keren speaks she sounds like a veteran jurist, but she says the situation in which her family finds itself is like a nightmare, from which she hopes to wake up quickly and return to routine life.

"I met Chaim in the Kahane Youth Movement," Keren says. "Chaim was a youth leader there and I was an activist. We participated in bus trips from Pardes Hana to Jerusalem to distribute leaflets... Our activities centered around demonstrations and educational campaigns aimed at convincing the public that the land of Israel is in danger."

Keren was 19 years old when she and Chaim decided to get married. "Chaim is the most amazing person I ever met. His sensitivity, his dedication, his innocence, were all things that drew me to him." After their marriage they moved to the town of Tapuach in the Shomron, then to Givat Washington near Ashdod. "Chaim's dream was to become a physical education teacher and to work with children. He loves children very much, and looked for a profession where he could work with them."

But that dream was shattered when the professional committee of the Ministry of Education refused to allow Chaim to be a teacher in Israel.

"It was very strange," Keren recalls, describing the committee's decision to reject Chaim due to what was defined as a criminal record. "We brought all kinds of recommendations from around the world, proof that the files against Chaim were of political demonstrations, or raising the flag of Israel on the Temple Mount." Despite the fact than an absolute majority of the committee members believed that they shouldn't rule out the possibility of Chaim being a teacher, there was one member of the committee who was decisively opposed to the nomination: "The ministry's security officer argued that due to Chaim's criminal record and the fact that he was put in prison for demonstrating against the expulsion of Jews from Gush Katif, he must not be allowed to become a teacher."

"The next day the phone rang, and on the line was someone who introduced himself as a friend of Chaim's from the past. In retrospect, this conversation was the beginning of the roller coaster of our lives today."

This "friend" turned out to be a Shin Bet agent, who "played on Chaim's conscience and our difficult economic situation. He met with Chaim repeatedly and told him that for the sake of his new-born son, Yitzhar, going into first grade, he should cooperate. Chaim, in his innocence, agreed. The Shin Bet agents would talk to him about faith and his economic situation, giving Chaim money. Chaim didn't share the details to me at the time, and he would come home each time saying that he made some money doing odd jobs in Ashkelon."

"After several meetings, the agents wanted to see some results from Chaim. They expected him to tell stories about what his friends were doing. Chaim didn't want to talk about others, so instead, he began to make up stories about himself. These weren't true, but the Shin Bet wanted to believe those made-up tales."

"At this point, when Chaim realized he had made a mistake, he let me in on what was going on and we turned together to Itamar Ben-Gvir and Noam Federman. They recommended that Chaim cut off contact immediately with the Shin Bet, and Itamar also began to involve the media, which turned out to be a brilliant step."

Chaim's connection with the media was carried out "right under the Shin Bet's nose," says Keren, "but that didn't stop them from sending an agent, code-named 'Dada', to try to incriminate him. It was clear to us from the start that Dada was an agent, and Chaim taped his conversations with him, where Dada tried to 'trip him up'. These conversations were then sent to the media, who published them so that all of Israel could witness the conduct of the General Security Service."

Once the Shin Bet found out that Dada was suspected and that Chaim was in possession of dozens of hours of taped conversations, they came to arrest him and to search for the recordings: "Late at night, nine 'thugs' came to our house looking for the tapes. When they found them, they were quite happy," recalls Karen. "But they did not know at the time that Itamar Ben-Gvir had passed on several of the tapes to the media. As soon as Chaim was arrested, the media released the recordings to the public."

Keren says that Chaim was treated horribly during his detention. "They prevented Chaim from seeing a lawyer for ten days. They abused him, tied him to a chair every day for 16 hours, beat him, screamed in his ear, kept him from sleeping, put him into a refrigerator where the temperature was 6-7 degrees Centigrade and prevented me from giving him a sweater," she says. "When I came with a sweater to the interrogation facility, they said it would interfere with the investigation."

During all this time, Keren says she kept believing in G-d, "Who performed miracle after miracle for us in this story. When I think of what happened, my belief in G-d is strengthened. First of all, the very fact that Chaim did not break down is a miracle. Anyone else in that situation would even have admitted to killing Arlozoroff!"

She made sure to mention the names of several people that "I want to thank who helped us to no end." Here she named Shmuel Medad, head of the Honenu legal rights organization — "a genuine angel" — as well as others from Honenu, in addition to friends and neighbors from Givat Washington, and others.

Keren has no illusions, and knows that the story is far from over: "Already this morning the Shabak appealed the decision to release him to house arrest, and it's very likely that they will find a rubber-stamp judge who will agree. But they themselves know that there's no evidence against him, and I therefore hope and pray that he will return home very soon... Chaim was naive when he agreed to meet them. He was worried about feeding his children, but we both know now that it is better to collect alms on the street than to trust these dishonest people whose only motivation is to appease the left and 'stick it' to the right."

Emanuel Winston is a commentator and Middle East analyst. His articles appear often on Think-Israel and Gamla. He is a member of the Board of Directors and a research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies (http://www.freeman.org/online.htm). Contact him at gwinston@gwinstonglobal.org

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WHEN NAIVETÉ BECOMES SEDITION
Posted by Steven Plaut, August 18, 2010.
 

The most dramatic and important political change in Israel over the past 20 years has been the transformation of the Israeli Left from a movement of political naiveté to one of, in an increasing number of instances, political sedition.

For most of its history, the Israeli Left was a well-meaning if rather clueless political camp. Its core belief was that a more accommodationist set of policies could buy Israel peace with the Arab world.

Throughout the 1970s and much of the 1980s, the Israeli Left insisted that endless Israeli "goodwill gestures" would prove to the Arabs that Israel's intentions were benign, and as a result the Arabs would be persuaded to come to terms with the Jewish state.

The Left insisted that Israel's turning the other cheek in response to Arab terrorist atrocities was the most effective method to end them. It argued that Israeli retaliatory acts were actually causing Arab terror attacks. (Leftists everywhere have long been fond of Orwellian inversions of cause and effect.)

The Israeli Left dismissed the genocidal agenda of Arab terrorist groups as empty rhetoric. It believed Israeli self-abasement could buy friendship and goodwill from the very terrorists who hailed Hitler as their role model, who libeled Jews with the claim that they drink the blood of gentile children on Passover, and who denied there had ever been a Holocaust.

The Israeli Left of yesteryear — the Israeli Left pre-Oslo, pre-1993 — was wrong but for the most part not malevolent or self-hating. However misguided its policy prescriptions, its motivations were essentially pro-Israel.

Back in 1993 most Israeli leftists believed the Left's ideas would benefit Israel and the Jewish people. (Today, all too many leftists support those same ideas precisely because they know that they harm Israel and Jews.)

In 1993 most Israeli leftists believed Israeli concessions would lead to Arab moderation. (Today's leftists know — but seemingly don't care — that concessions are seen as signs of weakness that only inspire greater Arab violence.)

In 1993 most Israeli leftists believed in Israeli restraint because they thought it would stimulate Palestinian goodwill and most leftists thought Israel would emerge stronger if the Oslo accords were implemented. (Today's leftists demand endless restraint even after witnessing the bloody results.)

In other words, the Israeli Left of 1993 was by and large a Left that could, if properly provoked, be awakened from its delusions. And in fact, many longtime leftists would move to the center and even to the right in the decade immediately following Oslo as Palestinian atrocities, endless violations of PLO commitments, and increasingly Nazi-like rhetoric from both Palestinians and Israeli Arabs continued to mount.

This is not to in any way excuse the old Israeli Left for its disastrous policies — policies devoid of any understanding of hard-headed realism.

Ultimately, the old Israeli Left got to implement its agenda in the great Oslo "peace process" experiment, with successive Israeli governments under Yitzhak Rabin, Shimon Peres, Benjamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak, Ariel Sharon and Ehud Olmert agreeing in principle to eventually abandon all or almost all of the "occupied territories," even to divide Jerusalem and restore the Golan Heights to Syria's ruling clique.

The result was escalated terrorism and a global campaign of delegitimization against Israel.

The Oslo policy of Israel's old Left was based on a total loss of the ability to think rationally. It was a loss of historic proportions, a relinquishment of reality for a make-pretend universe, and a complete loss of the Jewish determination to survive as a nation.

How else to explain thespectacle of Israeli leaders meeting, back-slapping and kissing the same Arab fascists who murdered Jewish children and only yesterday denied there had ever been a Holocaust while at the same time insisting that if there had been one, the Jews deserved it?

* * * * *

Now, less than 20 years after the beginning of the Oslo "peace process," Israel's very continuation as a Jewish state is regarded as a legitimate topic of debate in polite company. Even worse, it is the Israeli Left that more and more is leading the assault against its country's legitimacy and very survival.

The "peace process" experiment proved beyond doubt that the Israeli Left's perception of the problems of the Middle East had always been distorted. Perhaps the most egregious example of this was Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, which served to convert all of Gaza into a Hamas terror base rather than the tranquil oasis the Left was convinced would follow.

The Gaza withdrawal produced a torrent of thousands of rockets from terrorists in Gaza on Jewish civilians in the Israeli Negev, which of course is located well within Israel's pre-1967 "Green Line" border.

And thanks to Israel's unilateral capitulation in Southern Lebanon in 2000, there was a barrage of thousands of Katyusha rockets from Lebanon into Northern Israel in the summer of 2006 as well as the seizure of much of Lebanon by genocidal Hizbullah terrorists. The Palestinian Authority of the "moderate" PLO entered into an open competition with Hamas and Islamic Jihad over which group could launch the most terrorism against the Jews.

The Oslo disaster also triggered a global upsurge in anti-Semitism and support for Arab demands around the world.

Israel's endless self-restraint in the face of terrorism and its countless capitulations won Israel no friends. Even the White House responded to such displays of weakness by demanding that Israel agree to turn its holiest shrines over to terrorist control. The more Israel exhibited restraint, the more the world denounced it for its "violations of human rights" and "apartheid racism."

Israeli displays of weakness have not only convinced the Arab world the Jews are on the run, they have resulted in a worldwide campaign of demonization against Jews, including — but not limited to — medieval-style tales of Jews trafficking in the body parts of dead Palestinians and Israelis engaging in Nazi-like war crimes.

Meanwhile, the Palestinians have yet to comply with a single punctuation mark in any of the "accords" and agreements they have signed, yet the world insists in rare unison that Israel is the only obstacle to peace in the Middle East.

The failures of the "peace process" have also had interesting domestic political ramifications inside Israel. The de facto implementation of leftist thinking by the various governments of the Labor Party, Kadima and Likud has ultimately served to undermine the very survivability of the country. As a result, more and more Israelis have experienced a "dropping of the token," as Hebrew slang describes a rude awakening.

As noted above, large numbers of Israelis abandoned the political Left as it became ever more difficult to deny that leftist-inspired policies had simply made the situation far worse and far more dangerous. The Meretz Party lost 75 percent of its electoral support within just a few years. Leftist organizations Peace Now and Dor Shalem are largely defunct.

On the other hand, the people remaining within the ranks of the dwindling Left have become increasingly extreme. Indeed, many of them have emerged as a political Fifth Column. For reasons only psychiatrists might properly fathom, this rump political Left in Israel openly identifies today with the enemies of its own country, supporting all enemy demands without reservation.

The ugly and indisputable reality is that the contemporary Israeli Left consists of people openly calling on the world to impose on Israel sanctions and divestment schemes. It consists of people proclaiming that peace has been blocked because Israel is an evil entity. The Palestinian "right of return" that would annihilate Israel from within is now supported by hundreds of leading Jewish leftists.

The Israeli Left, particularly the academic Left, churns out enormous amounts of anti-Israel hate propaganda for all takers. It was the Israeli Left that invented for world consumption the "apartheid" calumny, as well as fictions about Israeli "war crimes." (Does it even need to be said that no leftist has ever been indicted for this under Israel's toothless anti-treason laws?)

The Israeli Left is also increasingly involved in law breaking and violence. The government turns a blind eye to this. Even though the original idea for Israel's security wall had actually come from the Left (because leftists thought this would calm the situation and lead to Israel's abandoning most of the West Bank to the Palestinians), week after week Israeli leftists now hold violent demonstrations against that wall, attempt to vandalize it, and physically attack Israeli police and soldiers. They also hold demonstrations demanding that large swaths of Jerusalem be kept judenrein — Jew-free.

To grasp the absurdity of this, try to imagine U.S. civil-rights protesters wearing Klan hoods and demanding that black folks be kept out of neighborhoods "where they do not belong." Israel is the only country on the planet where domestic leftists lobby to force their country into giving up its capital city.

Most alarming, however, has been the Israeli Left's adoption of the political positions and agendas of its country's worst enemies regarding almost everything. Before any audience that will listen, Israeli leftists routinely denounce Israel as essentially a colonialist racist entity with no moral right to exist and certainly no moral right to defend itself.

There is not a single act of self-defense that Israel could undertake today against terrorists that would not be denounced by Israel's Left as criminal, fascist, or racist (sometimes all three). Israel's most visible leftists seem to have one position and one position only — total Israeli capitulation to terrorist demands, including "talks with" (meaning capitulation to) Hamas.

The old naïve Israeli Left may have preferred that Israel seek to resolve its conflict with the Arab world through niceness, but it had no delusions about what ultimately lay at the origins and the heart of that conflict. The old naïve Left understood that the Middle East conflict was caused by the Arab refusal to accept any manifestation of Jewish self-determination in the Middle East.

The Israeli Left of the 21st century, in stark contrast, believes the conflict stems from the temerity of the Jews in reestablishing sovereignty in their historical homeland. Israel's very existence, in the eyes of a dismayingly large number of leftists, particularly those in academia and the media, is a crime in itself — the original sin, if you will.

More and more Israeli leftists openly mourn the very creation of Israel, joining together with Islamists in "Nakba Day" commemorations marking the "catastrophe" of Israel's existence.

Israeli leftists routinely join foreign anti-Semites in promoting what they call the One-State Solution — in effect a final solution under which Israel would cease to exist altogether as a Jewish state and simply become absorbed into a larger, predominantly Arab, binational state.

That a growing number of Israeli leftists regard their own country as a paragon of evil is bad enough. Also growing, however, are the manifestations of open anti-Semitism among Jewish Israeli leftists. Their intellectual nexus is Israel's professoriate (exposed in detail at www.isracampus.org.il).

Israeli tenured academics are the sponsors and initiators of campaigns all over the world to boycott Israel, including boycotts against the very universities that pay their salaries.

Hundreds of Israeli university professors have been involved in organizing mutiny and insurrection among Israeli soldiers, and some have even been arrested for violence. Israeli university authorities wink at such faculty behavior and sometimes condone or promote it.

Israeli students are increasingly complaining about being harassed by leftist faculty members if they dare express dissenting pro-Israel opinions in the classroom, and some claim their grades were lowered as punishment for this felony.

In-classroom anti-Israel indoctrination is becoming more common at Israeli universities. Israeli extremist academics have misused their classroom podiums to force-feed their students anti-Israel libel and anti-Jewish venom. Some courses consist of little more than North-Korean-style one-sided political indoctrination. "Academic" conferences held weekly on Israeli campuses are often anti-academic exercises in one-sided advocacy of leftwing positions.

Faculty hiring and promotion decisions are often subordinated to political bias and gestures of leftist political solidarity. Authors of tracts as openly anti-Jewish as the Protocols of the Elders of Zion are granted tenure automatically. Israeli extremists with mediocre academic records are hired and promoted as acts of solidarity by other leftists within the university system. University officials often pretend that anti-Israel political propaganda is serious scholarship and research.

* * * * *

On the left wing of the Israeli political spectrum, the simple son of the Passover Haggadah has been replaced by the wicked son. The Left in Israel is at war with Zionism and Israel's continuation as a Jewish state. It is also radically opposed to democracy and freedom of speech. For too many leftists, the highest form of democracy means issuing calls for foreign powers to neutralize Israel's electorate and to impose an outside "solution" on the country — one to the liking of the Arabs — by means of threats and force.

This is a phenomenon that needs to be understood and internalized — and actively fought — by all non-leftist Jews in Israel and throughout the Jewish world if the Jewish state is to survive.

Steven Plaut is an American-trained economist, a professor of business administration at Haifa University and author of "The Scout." He frequently comments — both seriously and satirically — on Israeli politics and the left wing academic community. Write him at stevenplaut@gmail.com His website address is
http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com.

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THE SADDAM HUSSEINIZATION OF BEN GURION UNIVERSITY
Posted by Steven Plaut, August 18, 2010.
 

This is an Op-ed entitled "Leftist professors' concept of 'freedom' similar to Saddam Hussein's vision." It was written by Omer Gertel, a Ben-Gurion University behavioral sciences graduate, It appeared in Ynet News
(www.ynetnews.com/articles/ 0,7340,L-3938723,00.html).

 

Saddam-style freedom

Saddam Hussein won 100% of the vote in the elections held in Iraq in 2002. This accomplishment made him very happy, as it proved that popular support for him grew since the 1995 elections, where he only own 99.96% of the vote. Indeed, freedom and democracy were flourishing in Saddam's Iraq, and every seven years citizens were offered the opportunity to vote any way they wished, as long as they elected the man with the moustache.

I would not be referring to Saddam had it not been for Dr. Nitza Berkovitch's article, McCarthyism in Tel Aviv, where she bemoaned the assault on what she dubbed "academic freedom" and various elements' desire to politicize academia. As I discovered, Dr. Berkovitch and myself apparently hold different definitions for the term "freedom"; however, to properly explain this, I must put Saddam Hussein aside for a moment and turn to Edward Said.

Every sociology student is familiar with Said's name, and with his book, Orientalism. For the benefit of those unfamiliar with this work, I shall briefly sum it up: Said managed to blame the imperialist, wicked West for all the East's maladies. Every problem in the "Orient," according to Said, stems from the manner in which the West portrayed and treated Middle Eastern nations.

As result of Said's immense influence, to this day we see Western intellectuals and almost every Middle Eastern citizen blaming the West for everything, while minimizing the influence of religious fundamentalism, totalitarianism, undeveloped education, technological backwardness, or discrimination against women and minorities.

From left to right, Michelle Obama, then Illinois state senator Barack Obama, Columbia University Professor Edward Said and Mariam Said at a May 1998 Arab community event in Chicago honoring Rashid Khalidi who was leaving Chicago to become a professor at Columbia University. Edward Said gave the keynote speech. (Image from archives of Ali Abunimah)

By the way, after managing to prompt almost every Western intellectual to apologize for his or her very existence, Said found time for other pursuits, such as hurling stones at IDF soldiers on the Lebanon border.

Edward Sa'id launching a stone against Israeli soldiers on the other side of Lebanon's border with Israel from the southern Lebanese village of Kfar Kila on July 3, 2000.

I became familiar with Said while studying sociology at Ben-Gurion University. That was natural, as his views are commensurate with the dominant agenda there, but even that is fine — after all, his influence was too great to ignore. However, despite the consensus he enjoys among sociologists, Said also has rivals, headed by one of the world's greatest Orientalists, Bernard Lewis.

Lewis and others (the most prominent among them may be former Muslim Ibn Warraq) criticized Said at length. They pointed to serious methodological failures in his research, unforgivable errors of logic, and embarrassing mistakes in the historical data his arguments were premised on. Their criticism blunts, if not shatters, the sting of Said's accusations.

However, I was not familiarized with these researchers when I learned sociology at Ben-Gurion University. I had to discover them and their criticism on my own. Every sociology student is familiar with the name Edward Said. Almost no sociology student knows the names Bernard Lewis or Ibn Warraq, and this is no coincidence.

Radical thinkers lauded

This is just one example. It is also no coincidence that most sociology students are enthused socialists. Just like me, they studied Marx, and it's absolutely fine for them to study Marx, because how can one study sociology without studying Marx? However, there are some strong arguments in favor of capitalism as well, yet these are not being taught at all.

It's the same story on every front — the radical thinkers who write about discrimination and exploitation will be taught and praised. Yet every different opinion that counters these views and enables the students to realize that there are other ways is unavailable.

This precisely is the problem that makes the claims about lost academic freedom laughable. Freedom always has to do with the liberty to choose between one option to another. Freedom is impossible when only one option exists to begin with, unless we are talking about Saddam-style freedom.

Too often at social sciences departments we see only one narrative, and so, instead of developing the minds of students, presenting them with a spectrum of ideas, and enabling them to choose and add their own insights, they are being shackled to one strict approach that has nothing to do with freedom. This one approach was not created coincidentally, and those who created it are justifiably drawing criticism.

Indeed, it is not desirable for academia to serve as the government's mouthpiece. On the other hand, it's also not desirable to pretend that politics and academia aren't interlinked, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the sociology department. Anyone who ever read a sociological essay immediately realized that to a large extent a sociologist is just like a newspaper columnist.

The sociologist's columns tend to be longer and more deeply reasoned, yet at their base there will always be an expression of a wholly political view.

As such, academia is necessarily tainted by politicization. However, at this time, this politicization goes one way only. This bias could not have been created in a coincidental, free manner. Hence, correcting this bias and restoring ideological pluralism does not undermine the academia's mission — rather, it is the very mission itself.

Steven Plaut is an American-trained economist, a professor of business administration at Haifa University and author of "The Scout." He frequently comments — both seriously and satirically — on Israeli politics and the left wing academic community. Write him at stevenplaut@gmail.com His website address is
http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com.

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THE PEACE PROCESS AND POLITICAL DUMBNESS
Posted by The Israel Initiative, August 17, 2010.
This was written by Ido Pachter for the Israel Initiative.
 

Political Dumbness

The wheels of the political wagon are stuck. There is no progress, no talks, and no negotiations. Most of the American and international effort and media coverage is focused on renewing talks, without mentioning breakthroughs in understanding, without new agreements and without any significant concessions from either side. Ridiculously, negotiations alone seem to be enough!

This reality, of eager and continuous diplomatic efforts in order to bring the sides to the negotiations table, seems to have not existed since the Oslo Accords. It's as if officials are on strike.

What does this teach us? About a lack of trust between Netanyahu and Abbas? About American naiveté? Could be, but it really seems to be signs of desperation. Netanyahu knows there is no chance of reaching an agreement with the Palestinians while he is prime minister. He is tiptoeing around the American president, conceding here and there, but he knows that no progress will be made anytime soon. He knows this, because Barak and Olmert already offered the Palestinians everything, including Jerusalem and most of the settlements, and Arafat refused. So, what can we expect?

The media understood this, and so has the Israeli public. Negotiations nowadays are more boring than a silent movie. No one is excited by announcements of any kind of negotiations, and even Haim Ramon's secret negotiations are only interesting because they are mysterious, and not because of their practical implications.

Surprisingly, Arabs have also become less and less interested in negotiations recently. A survey by the news channel El-Arabia found that 71 percent of Arabs do not care about talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Arab leaders are concerned by this, because it shows, once again, the despair that is spreading in the whole region.

What's the conclusion? It's about time to look at reality in the face, and admit the truth. The two-state idea is a failure. There's no reason to deal with it anymore, because no progress can be made. We must think outside the box and suggest something new and refreshing for the Middle East.

To read an interesting idea from Dr. Martin Sherman from the Tel Aviv University Political Science department, click here.

The Right to Return — Illegal

Now it's official. In a position paper published by two important law experts — Professor Ruth Gabizon and Professor Yaffa Zilbershlatz — and presented to Prime Minister Netanyahu and other senior officials established that there is no legal basis to the Palestinian refugees' claims to a right to return.

According to the law professors, if the right of return was legally valid, it would have been tested in an international court of law. However, the opinion around the world seems to be that the problem should be solved, rather than recognize that the refugees have a right to their homes. Recognition is came only recently, in a court of human rights case relating to Greek refugees that were expelled from Cyprus in 1974 and recently requested to return to their homes. The court decided that, due to the time that has passed, it would be a mistake to allow the refugees to return to Cyprus.

In the document, the law professors blame UNRWA for differentiating between Palestinian refugees and all other refugees around the world. They say that the organization not only recognizes the right of Palestinian refugees to return to Israel, and consider Palestinians with Jordanian citizenship refugees (unlike any other refugees), but it also eternalizes the refugee status of convicted terrorists. This opposes the UN's statements on refugees, which cancels the status of any refugee that commits an act of terror.

Here is another example of the UN's two-facedness. In our last update, we saw that UNRWA is involved with organizing the flotilla meant to break Israel's naval blockade on Gaza. This week, we see that UNRWA breaks the laws that the UN passed to define refugees.

The solution, which our faithful readers know, is to shut down UNRWA and to transfer the Palestinian refugees to UNHCR's care. Only recently was it reported in the international media that this organization has trained refugees in Yemen to work in Sanaa, and that it plans to send aid to Pakistan after it was hit by natural disasters. This is an organization that knows how to rehabilitate refugees, and it has been doing so for decades, with a much lower budget than UNRWA.

Intensive activities towards closing UNRWA and transferring care to the UNHCR could pull the rug from under the Palestinians' national claims and bring regional peace.

With the document that was published, this move could get significant support. It turns out that UNRWA is not only unhelpful, it's illegal.

Aiding Corruption

Finally, we present a short online film from the public diplomacy organization "Free Middle East." The film shows puts a mirror in front of the world, who gives massive amounts of money to the Palestinians, instead of helping third-world countries.

The video shows how small the aid to Haiti or Pakistan is, compared to the Palestinians. Huge sums are given to a corrupt organization without limits, but real help to those who need it is not.

Watch the clip here.

Rawabi — a Dangerous Project

While we all know that a Palestinian State is a mistake, people continue to invest in building it, especially the city of Rawabi. Building this large, modern city for the Palestinians can be interpreted as a helpful effort, and so it is seen from the aiding US and EU — but there are far less innocent motives behind it. These motives include making sure that Israel does not have territorial integrity on Judea and Samaria, which is essential to continuing Jewish presence in the area and maintaining regional security.

Those who seek long range stability in the middle east should make all efforts to keep the area under Israeli control — and build whatever projects in accordance to the basic principle of one state west of the Jordan river.

Needless to say that the new city is not planned to absorb Palestinian refugees. They ought to wait some more generations in their eternal camps...

As always, we're happy to hear comments and reactions.

This is Update #33 of the Israel Initiative. Contact them at www.Israelinitiative.com

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PALESTINIAN DEMOCRACY: UNDER THREAT FROM ALL SIDES
Posted by Daily Alert, August 17, 2010.

This article appeared August 12, 2010 in The Economist. and is archived at
www.economist.com/node/16793370?story_id= 16793370&fsrc=rss

Editor's Note: Note that in the map below, Israeli towns and cities are called "settlements" while Arab towns are "towns". Note that Eastern Jerusalem is considered an Israeli settlement! The Economist is ignoring its own data base which would tell it that Mandated Palestine (Israel and the Territories) was decreed by international law (the League of Nations) in irrevocable trust for the Jewish people. The Trust was passed to the United Nations when it was formed. (Google for authors such as Grief, Brand, Belman and Shifftan in www.Think-israel.org for details. The Google box is at the top of the Home Page.

Moreover, in stating that "Democracy is flagging", the Economist appears to assume there was previous democracy in any territory controlled by the PLO, PA, Fatah or Hamas. In Israel. Or in Lebanon. Or in Jordan. Wishful thinking. Projected hopes. But not factual. Nor do the Arabs who live in Samara/Judea (aka the West Bank) differ from the Arabs who live in Gaza in their desire to eliminate Israel as a Jewish state. Moreover, the Economist doesn't mention that Abbas' term of office expired a long time ago. BTW: Sticking paper ballots into boxes doth not a democracy make, when the popuiace — by religion, by training and by blood lust — hasn't a clue to what democracy entails.

 

Left: Salam Fayyad, PM of Palestine Authority; Right: Ismail Haniyeh, PM of Hamas (Getty)

Hanna Nasir, the head of Palestine's Central Elections Commission, is not prone to expletives. But the Christian nuclear physicist and former dean of Palestine's leading university was full of them when the cabinet of the Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad (pictured above left), who runs the West Bank, recently cancelled the municipal elections he was organising. If anything, his rival prime minister in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas (pictured on the right), is even less keen to put his movement's popularity to the test.

It was the third election the Palestinian Authority (PA) has annulled in less than a year. The terms of the PA's presidency, parliament and municipalities have all now expired. With no date for fresh polls and in constitutionally uncharted waters, officials increasingly rule by fiat. How far, bemoans Mr Nasir, has Palestine fallen from the heights of 2005 and 2006, when he ran elections that international observers hailed as being among the fairest in the Middle East. Instead of building a democratic state, the PA is fast on its way to creating just another Arab autocracy.

Western governments which bankroll it do not seem unduly worried. Most of them view the PA as a necessary bulwark against an Islamist electoral tide, which in 2006 swept Hamas, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, into power in the Palestinian territories. Instead of accepting the Islamist victory, Western governments diverted funds from the PA's democratic institutions into the PA security forces under the control of Mahmoud Abbas, the PA's previously (and fairly) elected president, whose secular Fatah party Hamas had beaten in the 2006 general election. When, the year after, Hamas chased Fatah out of Gaza, Western governments invested in an unelected emergency government established in the West Bank under Mr Fayyad, a technocrat appointed by Mr Abbas though not in hock to Fatah.

Western governments have hailed Mr Fayyad for his efficient rule. In contrast to Yasser Arafat, the PA's capricious but charismatic first leader, Mr Fayyad has made the wheels of bureaucracy turn smoothly. His well-managed service-delivery is lubricated by Western largesse but also by the collection of electricity bills. Still, a growing chorus of Palestinian sceptics say they have yet to see evidence of the institutions Mr Fayyad has promised to build.

Nor do they see tangible signs of his promised state. Palestine's biggest symbol of sovereignty, its parliament, has been emasculated. For three years Mr Fayyad's government has rebuffed efforts to revive it and put legislation to parliamentary scrutiny. "The focus on Fayyad's personal virtues has obscured a series of unhealthy political developments, and mistakes honest administration for sound politics," says Nathan Brown of George Washington University in Washington, DC.

The result is that in both Palestine's cloven halves, governance is remarkably similar. Both Hamas and Mr Fayyad rule by decree, merging executive and legislative arms into one. Both promise elections sometime in the future but in the meantime round up their opponents and silence unlicensed independent media outlets. As a signal of their intention to rule without the restraints of impending elections, Mr Fayyad has a two-year plan for government; Hamas has a ten-year one. Both try to replace popular participation with populism. Mr Fayyad ostentatiously parades in public, telling his people not to buy products made in Jewish settlements in the West Bank. Mr Haniyeh, his Hamas counterpart in Gaza, takes to the pulpit in mosques and personally dishes out dollars to his beleaguered people.

In both parts of the Palestinian territories, most people accept their rulers' decrees without a murmur, for fear they may otherwise be thumped. If they are lucky, dissenters are invited to tea with local intelligence officers. Repeat offenders are sent to prison. Applicants for a government job, such as a post as a teacher, must get a certificate of good conduct — in the West Bank from local security officials and in Gaza from the local mosque. So most people are wary of stepping out of line.

But such constraints have sown apathy in both Palestine's halves. The main political factions either boycotted Mr Nasir's local elections or were too disorganised to mount effective campaigns. Protests after their cancellation were meek and brief. Opinion polls say most Palestinians are more or less willing to put up with their muzzled lot, since they have been exhausted by their own intifadas (uprisings), by Israeli repression and by periodic chaos.

Western policymakers, now straining to get direct talks to resume between Israel and the PA, with luck in the next few weeks, seem in no mood to promote a new round of elections that could lead to another triumph for Hamas. Fatah, the faction they favour, is fractious and disorganised. Faced with Egypt's proposal for a new caretaker government to succeed the rival governments in the West Bank and Gaza and to prepare for elections there, the American administration and the European Union have both balked. "The last thing many in Europe want is for Hamas to regain an executive role in the West Bank," says a European official. "We prefer division and no elections to reconciliation and elections." Instead, some appear to favour grafting the model that prevails in Jordan, where King Abdullah intermittently suspends parliament and rules by decree, but maintains stability, refuses to threaten Israel and listens as keenly to his foreign backers as he does to his own people. Egypt may even have urged the PA to halt its local elections.

But such regional policies have drawbacks. Keeping the status quo means putting off the task of reuniting the West Bank and Gaza and building a single Palestine state. With scant hope of peaceful change through elections, challengers inevitably consider other, more violent, options. "We had a choice of seeking power by democracy or revolution," says Mahmoud Zahar, a Hamas leader in Gaza. Like most Palestinians, his faith in democratic change has been undermined by Western-backed efforts to overturn or ignore the results when Hamas won in 2006. The ascent of Mr Fayyad, whose party won only two of the Palestinian parliament's 132 seats in that election, has taught other aspirants that the ballot box is not the only way to the top.

Mr Fayyad is only 58, but his list of rivals, some of them armed, is long. And contenders are already baying to replace the PA's increasingly frail president, Mr Abbas, now 75, who often says he wants to step down. Succession in Palestine may yet come by appointment, palace coup or something even bloodier, rather than by the ballot box.

The Daily Alert is sponsored by Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and prepared by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA). To subscribe to their free daily alerts, send an email to daily@www.dailyalert.jcpa.org

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WHY ALL MIDDLE EASTERN POLITICS CAN'T BE REDUCED MERELY TO THE ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT
Posted by Barry Rubin, August 17, 2010.
 

I simply cannot comprehend why so many in the West refuse to see that Arabs can be revolutionaries. It is remarkable that so many who claim to be experts don't incorporate the idea that Arabs, like other peoples, might dislike their existing societies or be motivated by ideologies claiming to be the blueprints for utopias.

After all, if Africans, Asians, Europeans, and Latin Americans think and behave this way, why aren't Arabs going to act the same?

The two paragraphs above are written in response to yet another book, by a very experienced expert on the region, saying that al-Qaida is almost completely motivated by the Palestinian issue as well as a couple of articles claiming that the only reason why the United States or President Barack Obama isn't popular in the Middle East is due to Israel.

In fact, al-Qaida, Hamas, Hizballah, Muslim Brotherhoods, and other Islamist groups, have been overwhelmingly motivated by a desire to revolutionize the entire Muslim-majority world (and even the whole world) in line with its interpretation of Islam. Al-Qaida's original cause was to overthrow the Saudi royal family, followed by an effort to help Iraq against Western pressure. In al-Qaida documents before and after the September 11 attacks, the Palestinian issue was not mentioned more than about ten percent of the time and never highlighted.

In addition, radical Arab nationalists, including many intellectuals and several Arab regimes (Egypt, 1952-1970; Syria, 1949-present; Iraq, 1958-2003; Libya, 1973-present), have sought to unite the Arab world under their leadership, overthrow neighboring governments, and expel Western influence in line with their ambitions and ideology.

And a recent poll showing that Obama was unpopular, the United States seen as an enemy, and tremendous popular support for revolutionary Islamists was also attributed by its sponsor to this cause. For my analysis of this poll, see here.

Yet why should this be so? Something fishy is going on here.

A while ago when my wife and I edited a book of readings on anti-American terrorism in the region-which showed decisively how little Usama bin Ladin ever talked about Palestine — the (ironically positive) review in one of the main American newspapers said the book showed how September 11 was all about Israel.

About two years ago, a Swiss reporter interviewed a high-ranking official in the oil-rich United Arab Emirates and asked why the school system wasn't better. Ah, explained the man, this was all due to Israel.

While the following are generalizations they are generally true. Arabic-speaking people live in terrible, unfree societies marked by massive injustice and poor prospects for improvement. Their lives are increasingly governed by restrictions based on religious interpretation, large-scale segregation by gender, a contrast of which they are well aware between the repression and stagnation of their own countries and the relative freedom and progress in other parts of the world.

They know there are high levels of violence and instability in their societies. There is ethnic and communal strife. There are wars over who will rule Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Yemen, and Algeria. There are political values everywhere else. There are contending ideologies, radical Arab nationalism and Islamism, promoting utopian expectations, while three worldviews that would bring more calm (traditional conservatism, liberalism, and nation-state patriotism) are far weaker than anywhere else in the world.

There is deep resentment of the West for past imperialism; its relative power and wealth; and cultural and religious differences.

All of these factors are systematically fed on a daily basis by mosques, schools, leaders, opposition politicians, media, and just about every other institution.

And yet we are to believe that this problem is entirely or almost entirely caused by Israel's existence, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the situation of the Palestinians.

That's it?

Why do people say this? One reason is ignorance. The conflict is all they know about the Middle East and this answer is what they are constantly told by most experts and some media.

Another reason is politics, as it is a talking point by those who for various reasons want to wipe Israel off the map or weaken it.

A third factor is a subtle West-centric view (with elements of the kind of psychic thing that causes racism): that only what the West does matters and that local peoples don't have minds of their own. So since Israel is considered Western and the West has generally supported Israel, that is "real" while Arab societies don't really exist, Arabs don't really have political ideas, and so on. They are merely blackboards on which we, the West, writes its ideas and records its deeds.

This same mentality also arises from the human desire for easy answers. No, they say, we don't have to battle terrorists and revolutionaries for decades, just give them the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (or perhaps all of Israel) and they will be happy, peaceful, and love us. Rejecting such a beautiful dream, such a "no-cost" solution isn't easy.

There are also those who, motivated by their desire to change their own Western countries, want to persuade people that the existing capitalist democratic system is responsible for all the world's ills and can repair them by literally a snapping of the fingers.

Of course, a fourth reason is that this is what Arabs so often say. There is indeed an obsession with the Israel/Palestinian issue, though less so than is generally believed in the West. What one often sees is that there is a big debate within the Arabic-speaking world but when the spokesman is interviewed by a Western media outlet he attributes everything to Israel.

Part of this is indeed used by governments and movements to further the resentment, anger, and violence. For the regimes, it is also useful for distracting attention from their own rule and channeling revolutionary energies against someone else.

Note also how, in fact, the Israel issue does function, never as an end in itself. For the radical Arabs and regimes, it was a step toward Arab unity and the expulsion of Western influence. For the Islamists, destroying Israel is a step toward establishing a caliphate, Islamist rule in every country, and defeating the West.

In short, a victory over Israel and its destruction would trigger more radicalism. A two-state solution would trigger another round in attacking Israel and a struggle over who would control Palestine (Fatah, Hamas, Iran, Egypt, Syria, Saudi Arabia) just as there is a battle over controlling every Arabic-speaking state. Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), with Walter Laqueur (Viking-Penguin); the paperback edition of The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan); A Chronological History of Terrorism, with Judy Colp Rubin, (Sharpe); and The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley).

This article is archived at
http://www.gloria-center.org/gloria/2010/ 08/all-middle-eastern-politics-cant-be-reduced- to-israeli-arab-conflict

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Shamrak, Steven HAMAS ON KILLING SPREE IN GAZA; "ISRAELI" SERIAL KILLER SUSPECT IS ARAB; WHO IS THE OCCUPIER?
Posted by Steven Shamrak, August 17, 2010.
 

Hamas on Killing Spree in Gaza. by Alex Fishman

News about bodies occasionally found at sea are published by Gaza newspapers. The number of such bodies isn't huge, yet not all those drowning victims chose to go swimming voluntarily. The Gazans who found their death at sea include mid-level officials at sensitive government ministries.

Some of them were shot in the head before being sent on their swim. There is a common denominator to these deaths: All of the victims were designated as traitors by the secret service of Hamas' military wing in charge of counter-espionage and executed as collaborators. And these are not just simple collaborators, but rather, people who penetrated deep into Hamas' government; so deep that Hamas leaders are embarrassed to expose the failure and prefer to make these people disappear, with or without a brief court-martial.

...These are clear signs of distress for Hamas' regime... The group failed to breach the naval blockade, failed to breach the obstacle of global recognition (Hamas flirts with the Norwegians and Swiss, who make great promises without the ability to deliver) and failed to breach the obstacle of Arab recognition... Meanwhile, the religious pressure keeps building up inside the Strip. Religious laws are becoming stricter and expand: Beardless men feel unease, while women are not allowed to smoke nargilas and must don a burqa, and so on. Gaza's streets are becoming Iran-like.

...Hamas' frustration already comes with a price: The recent rockets fired at Ashkelon and Sderot were shot by Hamas' military wing, without notifying the group's political leadership. There is no doubt that this fire aimed to destroy the calm and reignite the conflict against Israel & However, Hamas suffered a greater embarrassment following the delusional rocket attack on Eilat, which ended up killing and wounding people in Jordan's Aqaba of all places.

Food for Thought. by Steven Shamrak

Some people fear unilateral declaration of statehood by the Palestinian Authority. This will never happen, as they still want all Palestine, including Israel and Jordan. Their masters in Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia are interested only in prolongation of the Arab-Israel conflict and instability it creates. Unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state will completely expose their true intentions and will give Israel green light to implement the alternative solution to the conflict!

No Accountability, No UN Investigation! The German magazine Der Spiegel reported that German experts have confirmed the authenticity of photographs that show that PKK fighters in Turkey were killed by chemical weapons in September 2009. Turkey has long been suspected of using chemical weapons against Kurdish rebels. Since 1984, more than 45,000 people, mostly Kurds, have been killed in the conflict.

New True Friend or Another User? Romanian President Traian Basescu said that in the event of a confrontation with Iran, Romania would stand with Israel, and with NATO, which also opposes Iran's nuclear development program.

"Israeli" Serial Killer Suspect is Arab. American media have reported that the Israeli citizen who was arrested Thursday for 20 stabbings, including five fatal ones, is 33-year-old Elias Abu-El Azam of Ramle, southeast of Tel Aviv. Law enforcement authorities are convinced that the stabbings are racist hate crimes. (Many publications initially omitted the fact that he is an Arab from Israel. They are over sensitive about offending feeling of Muslims, but do not care about offending Jews by insinuation!)

Still Nobody Cares about Kurdistan. 1) Turkey distanced itself further from the West by signing a pact with Tehran for the exchange of intelligence in real time in their offensives against Kurdish separatists. 2) Syrian troops are locked in battle with Kurdish fighters since Assad's army blasted four northeastern Syrian Kurdish towns in late June. (There are up to 35 million Kurds who, unlike fake "poor Palestinians", used to have their own state, Kurdistan! Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syrian are still occupying their land. The UN is silent about their rights for statehood!)

Power Fight b/w the Houses of Terror. The Hamas rulers of Gaza and Jihad Islami have called up their military wings to fight it out in a quarrel reflecting the strains in Lebanon between the pro-Syrian and pro-Iranian factions over the Saudi Arabian move to pull Damascus away from its support for the Lebanese Hizballah and Iran's counter-moves.

Hypocrisy in Action:

"Obama: Israelis suspicious of me because my middle name is Hussein" — The implementation of anti-Israel policies, his disrespect and obnoxious behaviour toward the Prime Minister of Israel has nothing to do with mistrust? Political opportunists and Jew-haters have always been blaming Jews for the outcome of their despicable anti-Semitic behaviour!

Nobody Objects the US Military Help to Lebanon. America cuts funding to Lebanese army after Israeli clash. Two key Democrats, Nita Lowey and Howard Berman, announced they were holding up $100 million (£63 million) that has been approved for Lebanon's army but not yet spent.

Should Jews Fund Basque Separatists? Spain will fund Israeli left's NGO campaign to continue the construction freeze in Judea and Samaria.

Barak has Completely Lost It! Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered IDF troops not to eat while patrolling IDF checkpoints in Judea and Samaria during the month Ramadan. The Samaria Residents Council said that "it is sad to see that Barak has become an expert on Islam, as he sends IDF soldiers and border troops to tear down synagogues, beat up rabbis, issue orders to demolish Yeshivot, and arrest Jewish youths..."

With the Friend like this... A US State Department advisory issued on Friday warning Americans against visiting Israel, but not Jordan, following last week's rocket attacks on Eilat and Akaba raised the ire of Tourism Minister Stas Meseznikov. It was not the first time that American travel advisories had discriminated against Israel.

Hypocrisy of the Headlines:

Israel "must open Gaza borders" — BBC. Catherine Ashton, EU foreign policy chief — Has any country done it? I wonder, why this 'respectable' politician isn't demanding that Saudi Arabia and Iran allow freedom of religions, respect for human rights and stop sponsoring terrorism! Wouldn't it be nice?

Who is the Occupier? by Steven Shamrak.

It has become very common and trendy to say and write that Israel is an occupier of Arab land. Unfortunately many true Zionists are exhausted after challenging this baseless Arab and anti-Israel propaganda rhetoric year after year. Therefore even many Jews start to believe this lie!

I prefer to rely on facts not emotional or politically motivated fantasies. I would say, and historical facts support it, that Arabs are occupiers of Jewish land.

As part of the Palestine mandate: Trans-Jordan, Golans, Judea, Samaria and Gaza were allocated for creation of the Jewish State. The British government was appointed as a custodian of the mandate. After Jews started to return to their homeland in the 1880's and created agriculture and industries in the desolated land of Palestine, economic migration of Arabs followed. Later, the British helped to facilitate the politicly motivated migration of Arabs/Muslims to Jewish land. Jews were not allowed to live in Trans-Jordan, but Arabs were encouraged to move and live on the Western bank of the river Jordan.

In 1922 the British illegally separated Trans-Jordan from mandate in exchange for control of Sinai and gave the Golan Heights to France. The League of Nations-controlled by UK and France-rubber stamped the 'deal'. So, I would like to ask you now — Who is the real occupier?

We must stop believing in the lies of Jewish enemies! We must set our own goals and regain the rightful ownership of the Jewish land! Jewish people and Israel have spiritual, historical, moral and legal rights to all Jewish land! We must ignore the 'legal' illegality imposed on Jews by, generally, an anti-Semitic and oil dependent International community.

Steven Shamrak was involved in the Moscow Zionist movement. He worked as a construction engineer at the Moscow Olympic Games project and as a computer consultant in Australia. He has been publishing an Internet editorial letter about the Arab-Israel conflict since August 2001 and has a website www.shamrak.com. He can be reached by email at StevenShamrak@gmail.com

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LETTER FROM US SENATOR BROWNBACK ON ANTI-SEMITISM IN NORWAY
Posted by Institute for Global Jewish Affairs, August 17, 2010.

During summer we do not usually send out newsletters. However in view of its importance we would like to present to you a letter written by US Senator Sam Brownback to the Norwegian Ambassador in Washington D.C. expressing his concern over reports of increased anti-Semitism in Norway, including anti-Israel hate actions.

The letter was first published last Thursday by the blog Norway, Israel and the Jews but so far the Norwegian media have remained silent about it. In the attachment to the letter ten severe cases provided by the Simon Wiesenthal Center are mentioned, some of which include the involvement of King Harald V, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg (Labor), Foreign Ministers Jonas Gahr Stoere (Labor), Education Minister Kristen Halvorsen (Socialist Left) as well as Deputy Minister of the Environment Ingrid Fiskaa (Socialist Left). This below is from the Israel What website:
http://www.israelwhat.com/2010/08/12/ breaking-letter-from-senator-brownback-on- anti-semitism-in-norway/

 

On August 3rd, US Senator Brownback wrote a letter to the Ambassador of Norway in Washington DC. In his letter the Senator expresses concern over how hatred of Israel and outright anti-Semitism is being allowed to fester unchallenged in Norway. The authorities do not appear to want the public to know about this.

Our politicians do not tell. Our media corps is looking in the wrong direction. And our intellectuals, stooping low as they grovel for funds, have been reduced to the role of commissars. As this site pointed out in the Gudmund Hernes affair, when it comes to Israel there is nobody to speak out against the lobby. But this goes far beyond Israel, that faraway little country, and the microscopic community of Norwegian Jews. What is at stake here is the integrity of the nation. Ah, the red-green coalition were on the right track when they named their political program after the fairy-tale kingdom of Soria Moria, but what sort of fairy-tale king receives letters of concern from his closest ally, only to hide them from his people? Perhaps Through the Looking Glass would have been more appropriate: it offers an insane queen.

Read the Senator's letter below. Ask yourself as you read: what right does the government have to hide such criticism from the electorate? How are we supposed to be able to evaluate our politicians when they hide things from us? What else lies tucked away up there, in the gilded cupboards of Soria Moria, and how deep does that rabbit hole go?


 

Above we see the letter, which is very politely written, where Senator Brownback voices his concern. Below we see the ten-point list — from the Simon Wiesenthal Centre — upon which the Senator's concerns are based. This site will elaborate on each and every one of them over the next few days.

Contact the Institute for Global Jewish Affairs by email at phas1@jcpa.org

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CORDOBA OR TOURS?
Posted by Boris Celser, August 16, 2010.
This was written by Professor Emanuel Navon and is archived on his website: http://navonsblog.blogspot.com/
 

In today's France, Jewish items are being burnt on the streets again. Not Jewish books by the Church, but Jewish food by the Mosque. Food items are publicly thrown out of stores and burnt on the street if they are imported from Israel or simply if the package indicates that they are kosher. At least, the French Government publicly condemned this phenomenon, and Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux promised to prosecute the authors of what he called a criminal act of racial discrimination.

In Britain, by contrast, the court system has capitulated to the hatred and violence of Islamic militants. A few weeks ago, a London court acquitted the members of a gang who broke into a weapons factory and mostly tore it down. Their defense line was that they suspected that this factory had sold weapons to Israel during the Cast Lead Operation. The Judge ruled that their version was acceptable and set them free without even fining them for the damage they had caused to the factory. Similarly, four militants were acquitted by a British court last week for breaking into a retail store of the Israeli company Ahava. In other words, you are allowed to destroy property (and maybe, tomorrow, to kill) based on political opinions or even based on the unproved suspicion that your victim is acting against your political opinions. This is the rule of intimidation and terror, not the rule of law.

In Norway, it is not the court system but the government itself which has become accomplice to Jihad. Norway's Minister of Education Kristin Halvorsen was recently photographed in front of a demonstration sign saying that the US and Israel are the real Axis of Evil. Her boss, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, expressed public support for two doctors who helped Hamas during the Cast Lead Operation. Those two doctors are the authors of an anti-Semitic book that has been praised by Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store. Norway's State Secretary for Environment and International Development Ingrid Fiskaa has declared that the UN should bombard Israel.

Europe's descent into dhimmitude is a tragedy for those who care about Western civilization and about freedom. Alas, even the shining city upon a hill on the other side of the Atlantic no longer seems to be a safe heaven. President Obama's endorsement of the Ground Zero Mosque indicates that America is capitulating to cynicism in the name of freedom.

On the face of it, President Obama is right: As he said, because America is committed to religious freedom, Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as anyone else in the United States, and that includes the right to build a place of worship and a community center on private property in lower Manhattan.

President Obama, however, misses two points.

The first point is that Islam rejects religious freedom and the founding principles of the US Constitution. If Islam was not a religion protected by the US Constitution, it would be banned because of its ideology of hatred and discrimination. No other religion has produced 9/11. True, Christianity is responsible for the Crusades and for the Inquisition. But Christianity has integrated some elements of modernity, and it no longer condones murder in the name of faith. Islam does.

The second point is that the proponents of the Ground Zero Mosque are being purposely offensive and cynical, and that they intend to set a historical precedent full of symbolical significance. By building an Islamic site and symbol a few yards away from the place where 3,000 people were murdered in the name of Islam, they are intentionally insulting the memory of these people and are pushing bad taste to its limits. But, mostly, they want to declare victory. That is no speculation or conspiracy theory: The mosque will be called Cordoba. Do you get it? Cordoba was the first European city conquered by a Muslim army (in 711). Then a mosque was built there, and the rest of Spain was conquered. This is an accepted Islamic practice, and the proponents of the Ground Zero Mosque are note even hiding their intentions.

Islam is using the values of the West to fight the West. Saying that is not politically correct, but it is true. 70% of Americans are against the Ground Zero Mosque precisely because they understand that this mosque is not about religious freedom. It is about the use of freedom to fight freedom and to progressively impose an ideology of hatred, discrimination, and violence. Either President Obama doesn't see that — which is bad. Or he does but lacks the courage to say it — which is worse.

The American people should build a huge Church near Ground Zero and call it the Tours Church. Why Tours? Because Tours is the French city where Charles Martel defeated an invading Muslim army in 732, thus halting the Islamic expansion to Europe. By doing this, Americans will not only show that they too know History. They will also prove to themselves and to the world that they've learned from it.

Boris Celser is a Canadian. Contact him at celser@telusplanet.net

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OBAMA WAS WRONG FROM THE INSTANT ...
Posted by Paul Lademain, August 16, 2010.
 

... he opened his mouth to declaim in favor of a foreign-funded mosque to be constructed near enough and high enough to tower over and detract attention away from the people's memorial to the thousands of innocents slaughtered by Islamic jihadis. And to be named "Cordoba," inviting the unavoidable inference that this indecent erection is proof of Islamic domination.

One need not be a Jew or a Christian as a precondition to querying whether your faith, Mr. Gerson, stemming as it does from mixed roots, has burdened your reasoning. Of all people, you should be the first one to admit that criticizing and discussing the horrors of Sharia and Islam does not oblige one to regurgitate the the sometimes awful and by now ancient history of Christians or Jews, just in case your recent political utterances lauding Obama's allegiance to Islamic symbolism rests upon such fear.

The young Muslim lawyer currently occupying our Oval Office knows better than to hector a knowledgeable public into believing there's no way to put a stop to this insult to the thousands of Americans who were slaughtered by Jihadis. Constitutional scholar my foot! Any lawyer can call him or herself a "constitutional scholar" and Mr. Obama must have been a very poor one because contrary to what BHO hopes we'll believe, free exercise of religion is NOT a license to construct a mosque, a church, etc. wherever "one chooses." Were it otherwise, the filthy rich Saudis would build a mosque in the heart of Times Square. And in this case, the "one" who chose to insult our dead with his overt Islamic triumphalism is a foreign agent sponsored by Muslims who in turn sponsor terrorism against those they hate and in their every arabic preachment, they declare they hate Americans even more than they hate uppity Jews.

Anyone who has studied Islamic culture understands that an Islamic politician feels justified to engage in "taqqiya" in order to disguise his subversive agenda or sully and abuse a perceived "enemy of Islam". And an enemy, as defined by the hadiths, is anyone who is not bound in servitude to Allah. You should by now be aware that Islam has two faces and speaks in two voices and takes pride in so doing.

Worse still, this POTUS openly and cynically violates the US constitution by using his office to sponsor the aim of his religion---he was not expressing an opinion as an individual, he did not declare himself to be preaching as such. To the contrary, he spoke under the aegis of his office as POTUS. Moreover, he attests as he does on behalf of a hybrid entity--a political movement cloaked in religion--that declares it a right of Islam to murder non-Muslims. The Catholic Church was itself once organized to be the embodiment of church and state. The Islamic religion still is, and the mosque stands in testament to this unconstitutional blend of church and state.

This young Muslim also knows because he is a lawyer that contracts are NOT in and of themselves immune to being declared void or unenforceable. This young lawyer also knows, because he is a Muslim, that violent jihad is a fundamental pillar of Islam. Can one expect anything different from a man who spent his youth at the knee of US-hating, Jew-baiting "Reverend" Wright?

This Muslim occupier of our highest office, a young man who has never risked his life for our nation, is apparently determined to sow chaos over the graves of our innocent fellow Americans. No mosque, no church, no synagogue should ever be built near or overlooking Ground Zero because people of all faiths were exterminated by jihadis on 9/11. We the People of the US already have a memorial to our dead at Ground Zero and the People's memorial is all there ever should be.

Hillary should be sent sailing on her broom for taking our funds and paying them out to imam Rauf to fund his junket throughout the middle east "for to teach about the splendors of Islam to the Islamists." And if Bush used Rauf as his emissary, this is no justification for using him again or paying for his junkets. We want you to know that we are NOT Republicans, nor Democrats. We are the Majority of Independents who are silent no more.

Paul la Demain

Contact Paul Lademain by email at lademain@verizon.net.

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6 MILLION VOICES MUST BE HEARD!
Posted by Ted Belman, August 16, 2010.
 

We are extremely happy to announce that — with your help — the Never Again Is Now Coalition has already received more than 19,000signatures to the Jewish People's Declaration of Independence (3,000 online and 16,000 hand-signed through mailings), of which 500 are from Holocaust survivors. Incredibly, another 3,500 signatures from Israel are promised — ALL from Holocaust survivors! This is truly a miracle. Many thanks go out to the membership of the American Association of Jews from the Former USSR, for their tireless efforts in collecting thousands of signatures.
 

TO SIGN THE DECLARATION: please click here.

Historically, there is no other document that has been consecrated by so many Holocaust survivors that defines what must be done to secure Israel's survival. In order to defeat an entrenched enemy which is now dictating to us that the Jews again must go silently into the night, we must honor the Holocaust victims and survivors by ensuring that this document is read throughout the world. Only then will the voices of the Holocaust victims be heard in the halls of Congress, in synagogues and churches, and by all freedom-loving people of every race and creed.

Rev. Dr. John Lupoli, founder and President of the World Council of Independent Christian Churches — www.wcicc.org — has partnered with our Never Again Is Now Coalition. Dr. Lupoli is working diligently to obtain millions of signatures to our Jewish People's Declaration of Independence from the membership of his global ministry. In addition, he is using his organization's status as an accredited NGO to read the Declaration inside the UN later this year! The cost to obtain these signatures from around the world is astronomical because of the need to physically mail millions of letters. We must support this great man and his work; he has offered his whole ministry to support our cause. We must not lose this opportunity, this gift from G-d. To make a tax-deductible donation to this critical endeavor, please click HERE, and then click "Donate" under the heading, Never Again is Now. This donation will go directly to the Never Again is Now project.

We are sponsoring a world-changing Never Again Is Now Rally at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. at 11 a.m. on Sunday, October 17, 2010, in order to make our voices heard: We must prevent a second Holocaust!

Our current foreign policy will not only lead to the destruction of Israel, but to the moral and financial collapse of the free world. Thus, we will march into D.C. and demand the renewal of a foreign policy that honors Israel & freedom, and declares that terrorists & tyrannies are not viable partners for peace!
 

TO SIGN THE DECLARATION: please click here.

As you can imagine, such a massive undertaking incurs tremendous expenses, including constructing and updating the rally website, travel, mailing costs, advertising, the building of a stage, the renting of portable toilets, etc. So far, thousands of dollars have been spent out-of-pocket, with no regrets; yet, practically speaking, in order for us to move forward and achieve our lofty goals, we need your financial support. Please help make the Never Again Is Now Project a huge success; for, we believe this will be our last great opportunity to help save Israel.

In order to make this sacred undertaking a reality, we need your financial support! You may donate in two ways: directly to Pay Pal, by clicking HERE*, and/or, by purchasing Never Again Is Now Buttons, HERE*...

to ensure that 6 million voices will be heard. Our goal is for six million people to wear the Never Again is Now Button on OCTOBER 17th to let the world know that the Jewish People will never again go silently into the night, and to collect six million signatures to ensure that Never Again is not just a hollow phrase. Thank you in advance for your generous donation to help save Israel!

Never Again Is Now. Our March Towards Victory Has Begun!

Stan Zir — 516-644-5698
Buddy Macy — 973-785-0057

*Please Note: The purchase of Never Again is Now buttons and contributions to our project made directly to Pay Pal will not be tax-deductible. The Never Again Is Now Coalition is privately owned. However, as stated above, any donations made to the Never Again Is Now Project through the WCICC will be tax-deductible.

Forward this email to everyone on your E-mail, Facebook and/or Twitter lists! Thanks so much!
 

TO SIGN THE DECLARATION: please click here.

Ted Belman is a Canadian lawyer and editor of the IsraPundit.com website, an activist pro-Israel website. He lives in Jerusalem. Contact him at tedbel@rogers.com

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FROM ISRAEL: ONE THING AND ANOTHER
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 16, 2010.
 

Whom does Abbas fear more?

Eleven "militant" groups in Syria — including the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine — met at the home of Hamas politburo chief Maashal Khaled to discuss the pressure being put on Abbas to agree to direct talks.

Warning against "concession and compromise," they came out (as would be expected) solidly against those talks. In a joint statement they released, they charged that "the U.S. and the 'Zionists' were aiming to wipe out the national rights of the Palestinians and to cover up the practices of the occupation, settlement expansion and Judaizing the land."

Putting aside for a moment the actually physical danger to Abbas from an infuriated member of one of these groups, should he agree to talks, consider how he would appear to the Palestinian street: As a sell-out, a traitor, someone who cooperated in wiping out Palestinian national rights.

And consider, even beyond this, whether he would have any sort of latitude whatsoever to actually negotiate a deal in this climate.

Abbas has met with an assistant to George Mitchell, and plans to meet with the PLO Executive Committee, either later today or tomorrow, before making his decision.

~~~~~~~~~~

Defense Minister Ehud Barak has made a decision (to be brought to the Security Cabinet) to purchase F-35 Joint Strike Fighter planes from the US. The F-35 is a fifth generation stealth jet that reportedly is able to evade all radar and anti-aircraft missile systems.

Said Barak, "The F-35 will provide Israel with continued air superiority and help retain its qualitative military edge in the region."

The Pentagon has agreed to sell us 75 planes, but for the first stage, we will be purchasing 20, at a price tag of $2.75 billion, including simulators, spare parts and routine maintenance. Delivery is expected to begin in 2015.

This purchase has been a long time in coming: a major stumbling block was the opposition of the US to integration into the planes of Israeli systems. The first stage of planes that will be delivered will be configured roughly according to US Air Force specifications, but planes in the second stage will be designed according to Israeli specifications, and will include Israeli designed and manufactured systems.

~~~~~~~~~~

The purchase of the planes will be offset by an agreement by the US to purchase $4 billion worth of military supplies from Israel.

~~~~~~~~~~

While Israel will be the first foreign country granted permission to purchase these planes, but it is anticipated that in time nations such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt might also be permitted to purchase them. Thus there are those in the Air Force who favored the deal because this was deemed necessary for maintaining our strategic balance.

However, there is another perspective advanced by some critics: If Saudi Arabia and Egypt might also have these stealth jets in time, it might be more important for us to spend money designing a system that would provide defenses against this plane.

~~~~~~~~~~

Speaking of selling weaponry to Saudi Arabia, Lee Smith writing in Newsweek, addresses the upcoming sale by the US of additional F-15s. At one time, he says, this would have been greatly distressful to Israel. But now, once we were assured that the planes would not be equipped with certain long-range offensive capabilities, we "relented.":

"The balance of power in the Middle East has changed and may yet change again before long. If Israel and Saudi Arabia aren't exactly headed toward rapprochement, the old enmities are not what they used to be."

And the bottom line here is mutual concern about Iran:

"A few months ago, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal explained to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that sanctions against Iran did not offer the immediate solution required to stop the revolutionary regime's push for a nuclear weapon. This sentiment was echoed a few weeks back by the United Arab Emirates' ambassador to Washington, Yousef Al Otaiba, who calculated that bombing Iran was preferable to an Iranian bomb. Even as the ambassador later backtracked, the Middle East's worst-kept secret was now in the public record: the Arabs are even more concerned than the Israelis about an Iranian bomb. After all, the Jewish state allegedly has its own nuclear deterrent, while Arab nations finally depend on Washington to protect them — no matter how many arms we sell them...To preserve the American-backed regional order, Arab nations expect us [the US] to stop the Iranians, a security arrangement that has been clear since the Carter administration. What's new is that if we don't step up, the Arabs' unlikeliest ally, Israel, may have to do it."
http://www.newsweek.com/2010/ 08/13/the-israeli-saudi-american- alliance-against-iran.html

~~~~~~~~~~

This echoes what I've encountered from a number of sources, including the editorial in today's JPost, which says that "Israel and the Saudis are on the same page as far as Teheran is concerned." The JPost cautions, however, that "it should not have to fall to Israel to act alone on behalf of Saudi-US-Israeli interests."

Indeed, but what "should not be" and what may yet be are not necessarily the same.

~~~~~~~~~~

Hezbollah is in the news in couple of different contexts:

The IDF is continuing to release information on Hezbollah's new border deployment, in which it is setting up a network of bunkers, arms warehouses, and fighters in command posts in villages in south Lebanon (where, according to UNSC Resolution 1701, it is to have no presence). This reflects a change in strategy for Hezbollah from the 2006 war, when it operated mainly in wooded rural areas.

Just a month ago, we released details of a Hezbollah takeover of the village of Khiam, and now the IDF is making similar charges regarding the village of Aita al-Shaab. According to an officer in our Northern Command, several civilian buildings (perhaps most notably a home for mentally handicapped children) are being used as guerilla command posts — with fighters able to move between buildings via underground tunnels.

According to this officer, the guerillas now have 5,000 fighters between the border with Israel and the Litani River, and an arsenal of some 40,000 rockets.

~~~~~~~~~~

There is speculation that this information is being released for two reasons: First to let Hezbollah know exactly how much intelligence we have. And then, to let the world know that if hostilities break out civilians will die because of these actions by Hezbollah.

Scant documentation is being provided by the IDF because this would compromise its sources — although some maps and photos were released with regard to Khiam. Information probably comes from surveillance flights, spy satellites, and Lebanese agents.

UNIFIL, unsurprisingly, says there is "no evidence" for the Israeli charges.

~~~~~~~~~~

Meanwhile, Meir Javedanfar, an Iranian-Israeli Middle East analyst, has written a piece regarding his sense that "something ominous is in the air, involving Hezbollah." It may that Hezbollah is gearing up for a confrontation with Israel, but it may be something else very different: "the Shi'ite organization could be about to launch a domestic power grab...Hezbollah has the military capacity to do this, as it's the only militia in Lebanon."

See the analysis in detail here:
http://www.realclearworld.com/articles/ 2010/08/12/why_hezbollah_chooses_ war_99110.html

~~~~~~~~~~

I've gotten a large number of enraged e-mails concerning what appears to be Harvard's divestment from all Israeli companies, as reported by Globes. The full picture seems to be more complex, however, than what one might assume at first glance. (There is certainly an anti-Israel atmosphere prevalent on many US campuses, and Harvard's predilections in certain regards seem consonant with this atmosphere.)

The story, however, as it's come to me from reliable sources, is this: The Harvard fund in question — MSCI fund for emerging markets — is one that invests in "developing nations." Since Israel joined the OECD, it is no longer "an emerging market." The Harvard investment fund still has Israel holdings in its developed markets sections that were not covered by its recent filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission — which is what Globes was reporting on.

(With thanks to Bob G. for the informative running commentary, and research, on this.)

~~~~~~~~~~

"The Good News Corner"

Because we desperately need to hear good news.

[] Five physicians and 12 nurses who were trained in Jerusalem in a collaborative effort, are now doing circumcisions on adult males in South Africa for HIV prevention. Circumcised males are considerably less likely to become infected with HIV.

[] It has been known for some time that dogs can be trained to sniff out cancer because of certain molecules created by a tumor are exhaled in a person's breath.

A researcher at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology has developed an "electronic nose" — which is very close to the a dog's olfactory system — that is able to detect early stages of lung, breast, colon and prostate cancer. Not only can the device accurately detect minute amounts of chemicals emanating from tumors, it can also track improvement in patients' condition as they undergo treatment.

The value of this device is now being recognized, as it was described in the British Journal of Cancer; it has potential to save many lives.

In both of these instances, it occurs to me how something very simple in conceptualization can make an enormous difference.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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STOP ENABLING STEALTH JIHAD AND CREEPING SHARIA
Posted by Gadi Adelman, August 16, 2010.
 

On September 17, 2001, just six days after the worst attack on American soil, President Bush gave a speech at the Islamic Center of Washington, D.C. Below is the end of that speech, in which he stated:

"These acts of violence against innocents violate the fundamental tenets of the Islamic faith. And it's important for my fellow Americans to understand that. The face of terror is not the true faith of Islam. That's not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace. These terrorists don't represent peace. They represent evil and war.

When we think of Islam we think of a faith that brings comfort to a billion people around the world. Billions of people find comfort and solace and peace. And that's made brothers and sisters out of every race — out of every race.

America counts millions of Muslims amongst our citizens, and Muslims make an incredibly valuable contribution to our country. Muslims are doctors, lawyers, law professors, members of the military, entrepreneurs, shopkeepers, moms and dads. And they need to be treated with respect. In our anger and emotion, our fellow Americans must treat each other with respect.

Women who cover their heads in this country must feel comfortable going outside their homes. Moms who wear cover must be not intimidated in America. That's not the America I know. That's not the America I value.

I've been told that some fear to leave; some don't want to go shopping for their families; some don't want to go about their ordinary daily routines because, by wearing cover, they're afraid they'll be intimidated. That should not and that will not stand in America.

Those who feel like they can intimidate our fellow citizens to take out their anger don't represent the best of America, they represent the worst of humankind, and they should be ashamed of that kind of behavior."

Although I didn't agree with what he stated, I understood at the time why he said it. Right after September 11, we had many incidents of mosques being vandalized. People were being beaten and killed, some of whom were not even Muslim, but rather Hindu's and Sikh men. These had been mistaken to be followers of Osama bin Laden because of their turbans and beards.

Things were truly getting out of hand. Hate crimes were up by astounding rates. According to an article by the Associated Press on June 29, 2003:

"Hate crimes against people because of their ethnicity or national origin--those not Hispanic, not black and not Asian or American Indian--also increased sharply, from 354 in 2000 to 1,501 in 2001. That category includes people of Middle Eastern descent or origin. The increases, the FBI said, occurred "presumably as a result of the heinous incidents that occurred on Sept. 11."

But the statement "Islam is a religion of peace" has been stated over and over by many a politician thousands of times. It has now become mainstream and common place. So much so, that this continued all the way through the Bush Presidency. On October 4, 2007 George W. Bush spoke on Al Arabiya television and claimed that:

"The Islamic religion is a great religion that preaches peace."

The very next day, on October 5, he hosted an iftar event at the White House, celebrating the daily breaking of the fast observed by Muslims during the month of Ramadan. Here he said:

"That's not a Christian act to kill innocent people, and those who carried out the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against New York and Washington do not reflect the views of the vast majority of peaceful people in the Middle East."

Funny that he even stated that at a Ramadan get-together. Well Mr. Bush, I can agree with that statement: "That's not a Christian act to kill innocent people". But then again, Muslims are not Christians are they?

As they often do with so many other statements, Muslim leaders and C.A.I.R. (Council on American Islamic Relations) are experts on utilizing what people say to their advantage. So, what started in order to quell anger and violence led to other "politically correct" terms.

Think back to pre-9/11 days. Do you recall anyone using the term "Radical Muslim" or "Moderate Muslim"? Interesting if you think about it; it's not like we hadn't seen Muslim terrorists in the news prior to 9/11.

Remember the Munich Olympic Massacre of 1972? The P.L.O. murdered 11 Israeli athletes and a German policeman in front of the entire world. Did the news refer to them as "radical Muslims"? No, they called them what they were; Muslim terrorists. Remember here in the U.S. the first time they tried to bring down the towers on February 26, 1993? Were they "radical Muslims" then? No, they were terrorists.

Now, we have the Obama administration, who in their infinite wisdom has removed each and every word from the National Security Strategy (pdf) that in any way, shape or form refers to Islam. No longer will anyone that works for the Government be allowed to say, use or write "Islamic terrorist", "Islamic extremist", "Jihad", "Jihadist", " Islamist"... you get the point. I am sure the term "Muslim maniac" is out as well, even though that wasn't specifically mentioned.

Utilizing the word "Radical" when describing a Muslim terrorist, suggests that there is such a thing as a "Moderate" as well. I am not saying all Muslims are terrorists. I am saying there is no moderate Islam. There are plenty of Muslims who aren't actively furthering the cause of jihad. But that doesn't mean that there is a form of Islam that is peaceful and non-supremacist.

I know I will take a lot of flak for that last comment; I will be accused of 'hate speech'. Well, if you want hate speech, read the Quran!

Instead of believing what I say, allow me to quote the guest I had just last week on my radio show "America Akbar". My guest was Dr. Thomas Ahmed. Dr. Ahmed is an Islamic convert who was born and raised in Sudan. A holder of 5 university degrees and expert on Islam, he is now an ordained Christian minister.

Dr. Ahmed is also the author of 12 books, all dealing with the problems of women in Muslim societies and the hidden causes that led to tragic events such as September 11. During my interview with him, we were discussing how anyone who says they are a Muslim must believe and embrace Sharia law. Dr. Ahmed made a telling comment referring to Muslim Americans:

"A Muslim is a Muslim, no matter where they live in the world". "The terms "radical" and "moderate" Muslim is a Western term, you never hear these terms in Muslim countries".

This point holds true for each and every Muslim. They must subscribe to all of the Quran and the Hadith. They cannot pick and choose what parts or verses they like or they would not be a "true" Muslim. So, once again, I am not saying all Muslims are terrorists. I am saying there is no moderate Islam.

If we continue to use words like "moderate" and "radical" we are subscribing to the famous quote by Lenin "A lie told often enough becomes truth".

This week I had Usama Dakdok as a guest on my show. Usama was born in Egypt and raised in a Christian home as the son of a Baptist pastor. Usama learned about Islam in school because it was, and still is, a mandatory subject. To further his knowledge of Islam, he studied Islamic law in college and came to the U.S. in 1992. In 2001 Usama founded the Straight Way of Grace Ministry.

He travels throughout the United States equipping Christians to be effective witnesses of Jesus Christ to their Muslim neighbors, as well as ministering to Muslims directly.

We spoke about "moderate" vs. "radical" Islam and Usama, who is very to the point to say the least, stated:

"There is no such thing as a 'moderate Muslim', 'moderate Muslim' exists only on paper. A moderate Muslim is a good Muslim who is practicing Taqiyya". (Lying as commanded by the Quran and Hadith to further Islam) "Islam is worse than a cancer that is spreading throughout America".

We, all of us, need to stop enabling the Muslims in this country and throughout the world. If you use the term "radical" or "moderate", stop! If you hear someone else using it, correct them!

I have said in every lecture and written many times before: political correctness will be the death of this country. You think I am being too harsh? You think I am spewing hate or imagining how much power a word can have?

Think about it, first they were "terrorists" and then they were labeled as "radicals". Then, quite recently, as in the case of Major Nidal Hasan, after he shot and murdered 13 and wounded 30, he was termed "misunderstood" and no news station said he was a Muslim. The 86 page report by the Pentagon never even mentions his motives even though he screamed "Allah Akbar" as he shot his fellow soldiers in cold blood. What's more is that the words "Islam" or "Muslim" are never mentioned in 86 pages. Not even once, despite his personal business cards inscribed with the letters SoA ("Soldier of Allah").

Then we had the SUV bomber in Times Square, ah yes, Faisal Shahzad. He was the victim. Remember the first reports? He was laid off, lost his mortgage and was "upset".

No, the truth was: he quit his job and stopped paying his mortgage because he knew he was going to carry out Jihad in America. It would be stupid to pay your mortgage when you are traveling back and forth to Pakistan 13 times in one year for training and to be a good Muslim.

Stop enabling and before you call me or anyone else who speaks out on Islam a bigot or a hater, read the damn Quran. Then we'll talk.

Gadi Adelman is a freelance writer and lecturer on the history of terrorism and counterterrorism. He grew up in Israel, studying terrorism and Islam for 35 years after surviving a terrorist bomb in Jerusalem in which 7 children were killed. Since returning to the U. S., Gadi teaches and lectures to law enforcement agencies as well as high schools and colleges. He can be heard every Thursday night at 9PM est. on his own radio show "America Akbar" on Windows to Liberty Radio Network. He can be reached through his website http://gadiadelman.com. This article appeared today in FamilySecurityMatters
www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/ id.7059/pub_detail.asp

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ARAB LEAGUE 'COURTS' PRO-ISRAELI PACIFIC ISLANDS
Posted by Women Against Sharia, August 15, 2010.

Perhaps the recycled Nazi stereotypes in Islamic-dominated states about Jews financially owning the world need to be re-thought? One only needs to take a stroll through London or Paris to notice the Arab petrol dollars and Arab investments in the West.

Now, the Arab League is targeting archipelago-states which traditionally favor Israel's right to self-determination.

This is from the ANSAmed info centre:
http://www.ansamed.info/en/news/ ME.XAM10481.html

 

SYDNEY, AUGUST 11 — The Arab world has launched a ''seduction offensive'' in the South Pacific, where most of the region's 14 archipelago-states traditionally support Israel within the United Nations and other international bodies, hindering the votes of much more populous nations. The daily paper The Australian has today reported on the Arab League's decision to send an official delegation to the Pacific and to open its own office in the region. Moreover, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have created a 38-million-euro development fund for the islands and will be the location of the headquarters of the new Arab-Pacific Cooperation Forum.

The paper reported that the plan had been outlined at the summit of the two regions in June in Abu Dhabi, where the 14 states were represented by heads of government or Ministers for Foreign Affairs, preceded by a visit to the region by the UAE Foreign Minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

In a document released at the end of the summit, the Pacific states ''note the concern on the part of Arab states over the conflict in the Middle East, especially in Palestine, and the need to resolve disputes on the basis of UN Security Council resolutions and the principles of the Road Map, and recognise that the positions of Arab states are crucial for peace which is fair, comprehensive and permanent."

"The mission of Women Against Shariah is to prevent and outlaw the imposition of shariah law in the United States for both Muslim and American women as either a parallel legal system or a replacement for existing laws. Additionally, we hope to empower women worldwide to resist shariah." Visit their website at
http://womenagainstshariah.blogspot.com/

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FROM ISRAEL: MAYBE
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 15, 2010.
 

That's what we're hearing: that the pressure on the PA has been such that it's likely that Abbas will agree in the next few days to come to the table. I'm not going to speculate about this unduly, preferring to wait to see what evolves.

I think Sarah Honig, writing in the JPost magazine on Friday, assessed the situation very well: "[If] Obama and crew did indeed twist Abbas's arms, we ought to be outraged. The very notion of dragging an unwilling interlocutor to the negotiating table should be unthinkable.

"...The bottom line result will be the same whether Abbas is coerced into a talkathon or whether he is allowed to avoid the ordeal. No peace will emerge in any case...You can pull Abbas to a conference room somewhere but you can't make him sign on the dotted line, and more so, you can't make him deliver."
http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/ Columnists/Article.aspx?id=184537

~~~~~~~~~~

Part and parcel of the expectation that Abbas will agree to negotiate is a plan that the Quartet (the US, the EU, the UN, and Russia) is slated to release shortly. Our government believes that this plan is an attempt to provide him with the cover that will allow him to agree to direct talks. It is anticipated that three things are likely to be mentioned by the Quartet: the need for an extension of the building freeze, acknowledgement of the '67 line as the border of a PA state, and a time limit for negotiations.

Our inner cabinet (septet) met for three hours today in order to discuss this situation. The decision, according to several news sources, is that we will not to accept any preconditions. Please G-d let this hold! This is of more than a little significance.

According to at least one source, there is expectation that the US will subsequently be releasing a plan that does not set out preconditions.

Maybe.

~~~~~~~~~~

I would like to recommend another opinion piece from the JPost, this one by Shalom Helman, who is director of Hadar-Israel: "Reclaiming Israel's Narrative of Freedom."

"Israel has lost the plot. To be precise, we have lost our plot. We are like tragic characters trying to find the story line in an absurd existentialist play. We have forgotten our narrative. Whether from self-imposed amnesia or a wistful yearning for "normality," we are no longer able to articulate our remarkable story to ourselves or to the world.

"...Public diplomacy will not succeed until we can unabashedly declare the story of who we are and why we are here."
http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/ Op-EdContributors/Article.aspx? id=184754

~~~~~~~~~~

In closing today, I provide the juxtaposition of two different video-recorded statements on the mosque at Ground Zero.

First a dignified and straight-talking Muslim, Raheel Raza, an author ("Their Jihad...Not My Jihad") and board member of the Muslim Canadian Congress. How, she asks does building a mosque on the site where Muslims killed so many Americans show sensitivity. It's a slap in the face of all Americans. Mayor Bloomberg and other "bleeding heart white liberals" make it harder for moderate Muslims, she says.
http://www.youtube.com:80/watch?v=KHg9gzo9o-U
(Thanks Stephanie W.)

~~~~~~~~~~

And then, the president of the United States defending the building of that Ground Zero mosque, because it reflects American values.

He later qualified his position, saying that he was defending the right of Muslims to build, but this didn't mean that he was advocating it. He does a lot of qualifying. But his statement here is vintage Obama, replete with the history of how Muslims have always participated in America.
http://gatewaypundit.firstthings.com:80/ 2010/08/obama-lectures-american-on- ground-zero-mosque-plans-video/

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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POLLARD DAY AT THE MALLS AND INTERSECTIONS
Posted by Hillel Fendel, August 15, 2010.
 

(Israelnationalnews.com) One thousand young idealists, the vast majority of whom were not born when Jonathan Pollard began his prison sentence, are out on the streets and in the shopping malls today, trying yet again to arouse awareness of Pollard's plight.

Just days before the summer vacation ends, the youths are standing at intersections and commercial centers around the country, handing out flyers and "We Want Jonathan Home!" bumper stickers.

"This is an initiative that arose spontaneously," says Asher Mivtzari, a leader of the Free Pollard campaign. "There were simply a bunch of youth who were unable to enjoy their summer vacation when they realized that at the same time, Jonathan Pollard was still sitting in jail, day in and day out. And so they decided to do the only thing they could — try to get as may people as they can to wake up and exert pressure on their leaders."

Israel National News contacted coalition whip MK Ze'ev Elkin of the Likud, known to be a supporter of the Pollard cause. "Have you spoken to Netanyahu recently about this?" Elkin was asked, and responded, "Netanyahu is not the problem. He is the one who made the most efforts to have him released, at the Wye Plantation agreement in October 1998; Pollard was almost freed, but at the last minute, possibly because of the media reports, Clinton changed his mind."

In fact, however, both former CIA head George Tenet and former Ambassador Dennis Ross have taken "credit" for having convinced Clinton to renege on his pledge to free Pollard. Tenet wrote in his memoirs that it was his threat to resign that scuttled the idea of freeing Pollard, while Ross said that he advised Clinton to "save the Pollard card" for when the United States would need to pressure Israel in the future. Others say that it was Clinton who reneged of his own accord on his promise.

In any event, Elkin said that the Pollard issue always comes up between Israel and the U.S., and that he is not optimistic that Barack Obama, "much more antagonistic to Israel than previous American administrations," will agree to release him.

[J4JP note: Neither Esther nor Jonathan Pollard has ever heard of Ze'ev Elkin prior to this article. The description above, that Likud MK Elkin is "known to be a Pollard supporter" is either an error or, in light of his sycophantic comments, a really bad joke.]

Mivtzari rejects this pessimistic approach. "Why doesn't the government have a Haggai Hadas assigned to the Pollard case?" he asks. [In May 2009, Netanyahu appointed former senior Mossad official Hagagi Hadas as his special representative for the return of abducted IDF soldier Gilad Shalit — ed.]

"The government should be doing more than it is," Mivtzari says. "Obama might be antagonistic, but he needs something to show the Israeli public that he is not as anti-Israel as he seems, and this would be the perfect 'out' for him. Our government needs to act more solidly."

One student participating in today's Pollard Day activities wrote as follows:

"How much longer can we be silent and ignore? ... Picture yourselves in a closed room without windows, picture searing pain and longing, picture your bodies pained and wounded, burning in summer and freezing in winter... Picture yourselves in this infinite hell for five minutes... or a year... We have a brother who has been in this situation for 25 years already, 9,030 days, 216,720 hours, 13,003,200 minutes of pure torture — and it was all for us.

"He understood that there is me, and there is you, and there is me and you together; that if I am hurting, then you are no longer whole, that all of Israel is responsible for one another, in the truest and simplest meaning of the terms. But we — what did we do? We were silent — and even worse, we forgot...

"It is in our hands. Together, we will end this nightmare. Together, we will bring Pollard home. Alive."

Hillel Fendel is Senior News Editor at Arutz-Sheva, where this article appeared today. It is archived at
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/ News.aspx/139116

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SWEDEN'S ANTI-SEMITISM DURING THE HOLOCAUST
Posted by Patrick Dempsey, August 15, 2010.

I replied to a Swedish student who asked what the world might consider Swedes were, as people, in light of the outpouring of anti-Semitism in Sweden recently.

 

Camilla

The Evian Conference of July 6th. to 15th. 1938 shows that chose to admit 3,200 refugee Jews from Hitler's escalating terror. When Wannsee convened, January 20th. 1942, 8,000 Jews of Sweden would be singled out for destruction. With that in mind, I doubt the questionable ethics of Swedish neutrality should not be considered an inappropriate response to Hitler's aggression. I hold that contention with my own Irish Nations' irresponsible attitude toward Germany during the period. It appears to me, and you might know this better, as a student in Sweden, the face of Intolerance shows itself too often for the Swedish people not to consider what indifference has shown with respect to the mass slaughter engulfing 6,000,000 Jews of Europe just over 70 years ago? I am prepared to go further and explore the ramification's and full extent of Sweden's neutrality, if you wish? This is what I have written of Sweden's failings, in my 1st. book, Testimony and Fading Memory in the Holocaust.

For the position of Sweden, however, whilst we know that it took great strides in preventing their own neutrality being compromised, and likewise protected the Swedish nationality of its Jewish citizens, they have left many questions unanswered. They did take it upon themselves, in the face of German hostility, to accept the Danish Jews who had managed to escape from the clutches of Eichmann's Jewish section. What is not so credible, though, is this Swedish responsive position, in light of the information that was within their jurisdiction. Sweden's own legation had been informed of the exact nature of the killing centers of Belzec and Treblinka, and as early as August 1942, should have prepared itself more widely for that intervention which people like Raoul Wallenberg undertook. It is not simply a case that the Swedish government did not treat the information with any more or less an expedient, than they treated the detail of the travel arrangements for their own diplomats. With that less than preemptory response, they did ignore the plight of the Jewish People, who were urgently in need of a very voluble, and a more concerning, voice.

Patrick Dempsey

Patrick Dempsey has authored books and articles about the Holocaust.

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HEZBOLLAH, RADICAL BUT RATIONAL
Posted by BenAmi, August 15, 2010.

This was written by Scott Stewart and was published August 12, 2010 on the Stratfor website
www.stratfor.com/weekly/20100811_ hezbollah_radical_rational. The original article has live links to additional material.

 

When we discuss threats along the U.S.-Mexico border with sources and customers, or when we write an analysis on topics such as violence and improvised explosive devices along the border, a certain topic inevitably pops up: Hezbollah.

We frequently hear concerns from U.S. and Mexican government sources about the Iranian and Hezbollah network in Latin America. They fear that Iran would use Hezbollah to strike targets in the Western Hemisphere and even inside the United States if the United States or Israel were to conduct a military strike against Tehran's nuclear program. Such concerns are expressed not only by our sources and are relayed not only to us. Nearly every time tensions increase between the United States and Iran, the media report that the Hezbollah threat to the United States is growing. Iran also has a vested interest in playing up the danger posed by Hezbollah and its other militant proxies as it tries to dissuade the United States and Israel from attacking its nuclear facilities.

A close look at Hezbollah reveals a potent capacity to conduct terrorist attacks. The group is certainly more capable and could be far more dangerous than al Qaeda. An examination also reveals that Hezbollah has a robust presence in Latin America and that it uses its network there to smuggle people into the United States, where it has long maintained a presence. A balanced look at Hezbollah, however, shows that, while the threat it poses is real — and serious — that threat is not new and it is not likely to be exercised. There are a number of factors that have limited Hezbollah's use of its international network for terrorist purposes in recent years. A decision to return to such activity would not be made lightly, or without carefully calculating the cost.

Military Capability

When examining Hezbollah, it is important to recognize that it is not just a terrorist group. Certainly, during the 1980s, Hezbollah did gain international recognition from its spectacular and effective attacks using large suicide truck bombs, high-profile airline hijackings and snatching scores of Western hostages (who were sometimes held for years) in Lebanon, but today it is far more than a mere terrorist group. Hezbollah is an influential political party with a strong, well-equipped militia that is more powerful than the army in Lebanon. The organization also operates an extensive network of social service providers in Lebanon and an international finance and logistics network that supports the organization through a global array of legitimate and illicit enterprises.

Militarily, Hezbollah is a force to be reckoned with in Lebanon, as demonstrated by the manner in which it acquitted itself during its last confrontation with Israel in August 2006. While Hezbollah did not defeat Israel, it did manage to make a defensive stand and not be defeated itself. It may have been bloodied and battered by the Israeli onslaught, but at the end of the fight Hezbollah stood unbowed, which signified a major victory for the organization and won it much acclaim in the Muslim world.

The tenacity and training of Hezbollah's soldiers was readily apparent during the 2006 confrontation. These traits, along with some of the guerrilla warfare skills they demonstrated, such as planning and executing complex ambushes and employing improvised explosive devices against armored vehicles, are things that can be directly applied to terrorist attacks. This was demonstrated in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri in February 2005.

Hezbollah maintains training facilities in places like Nabi Sheet in eastern Lebanon, where its militants are trained by Hezbollah instructors, members of the Syrian army and trainers from Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its Quds Force (IRGC-QF) as well as Iran's Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS). In addition, Hezbollah militants are sent outside Lebanon to Syria and Iran for training on advanced weapons and advanced guerrilla/terrorist tactics. Such advanced training has provided Hezbollah with a large cadre of operatives who are well-schooled in the tradecraft required to operate in a hostile environment and conduct successful terrorist attacks. Their links to Iranian diplomatic facilities guarantee them access to modern weaponry and military-grade explosives that can be brought in via the diplomatic pouch, which is inviolable under international treaty.

Latin American Network

Hezbollah and its Iranian patrons have a presence in Latin America that goes back decades. Iran has sought to establish close relationships with countries such as Cuba, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Venezuela that have opposed the United States and its foreign policy. STRATFOR sources have confirmed allegations by the U.S. government that the IRGC-QF has a presence in Venezuela and is providing training in irregular warfare to Venezuelan troops as well as militants belonging to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

The Iranians are also known to station IRGC-QF operatives in their embassies under diplomatic cover alongside MOIS intelligence officers. IRGC-QF and MOIS officers also work under non-official cover in businesses, cultural centers and charities and have been known to work closely with Hezbollah operatives. This coordination occurs not only in Lebanon but also in places like Argentina. On March 17, 1992, Hezbollah operatives supported by the Iranian Embassy in Buenos Aires attacked the Israeli Embassy in that city with a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device, killing 29 people and injuring hundreds more. On July 18, 1994, 85 people were killed and hundreds injured when Hezbollah operatives supported by the Iranian Embassy attacked the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association building in Buenos Aires. Iran also maintains diplomatic relations with Mexico and uses its official diplomatic presence there to engage Mexico on a range of topics, including commercial relations and international energy matters. (Both countries are major energy producers.)

While Hezbollah has received hundreds of millions of dollars in financial support and military equipment from Iran and Syria, it also has created a global finance and logistics network of its own. The Lebanese people have an entrepreneurial and trading culture that has spread around the world, and Hezbollah has exploited this far-flung Lebanese diaspora (both Christian and Muslim) for fundraising and operational purposes. To assist in this effort, Hezbollah also has partnered with non-Lebanese Arabs and Muslims, both Shia and Sunni, many of whom work with Hezbollah's network for financial gain and not out of ideological affinity with the group.

Hezbollah's global commercial network transports and sells counterfeit consumer goods and electronics and pirated movies, music and software. In West Africa, the network also deals in "blood diamonds" from places like Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and fences illegally bunkered oil from the Niger Delta. Cells in Asia procure and ship much of the counterfeit material sold elsewhere; nodes in North America deal in smuggled cigarettes, baby formula and counterfeit designer goods, among other things. In the United States, Hezbollah also has been involved in smuggling pseudoephedrine and selling counterfeit Viagra, and it has had a significant role in the production and worldwide propagation of counterfeit currencies. Hezbollah also has a long-standing and well-known presence in the tri-border region of Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil, where it earns tens of millions of dollars annually from legal and illegal commercial activities, according to U.S. government estimates.

The Hezbollah business empire also extends into the drug trade. The Bekaa Valley, Lebanon's central agricultural heartland, is controlled by Hezbollah and serves as a major center for growing poppies and cannabis and for producing heroin from raw materials arriving from places like Afghanistan and the Golden Triangle of Southeast Asia. Indeed, Hezbollah controls a commanding percentage of the estimated $1 billion drug trade flowing out of the Bekaa. Much of the hashish and heroin emanating from there eventually arrives in Europe, where Hezbollah members also are involved in smuggling, car theft and the distribution of counterfeit goods and currency. Hezbollah operatives in the Western Hemisphere work with Latin American drug cartels to traffic cocaine into the lucrative markets of Europe, and there have been reports of Hezbollah members dealing drugs in the United States.

In recent years, Hezbollah also has become active in Central America and Mexico, the latter being an ideal place for the Iranians and Hezbollah to operate. Mexico has long been a favorite haunt for foreign intelligence officers from countries hostile to the United States, ranging from Nazi Germany to the Soviet Union, due to its close proximity to the United States and its very poor counterintelligence capability. Mexican government sources have told STRATFOR that the ability of the Mexican government to monitor an organization like Hezbollah is very limited. While Mexico has a domestic intelligence capability, it has historically oriented its efforts toward political opponents of the government and not toward foreign intelligence operatives operating on its soil. This is understandable, considering that the foreign intelligence officers are in Mexico because of its proximity to the United States and not necessarily to spy on Mexico. The Mexican government's limited counterintelligence capacity has been further reduced by corruption and by the substantial amount of resources the Mexican government has been forced to dedicate to the cartel wars currently ravaging the country.

It is also convenient for Hezbollah that there is some degree of physical resemblance between some Lebanese and Mexican people. Mexicans citizens of Lebanese heritage (like Mexico's richest man, Carlos Slim) do not look out of place when they are on the street. STRATFOR sources say that Hezbollah members have married Mexican women in order to stay in Mexico, and some have reportedly even adopted Spanish names. A Hezbollah operative with a Spanish name who learns to speak Spanish well can be difficult for a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent to spot. American officials often lack the Spanish skills required to differentiate between Spanish speakers with Mexican accents and those with foreign accents.

Most of the Lebanese residing in Mexico are Maronite Christians who fled Lebanon and who are now well assimilated and prosperous in Mexico. Many of the Lebanese Muslims living in Mexico are relatively recent immigrants, and only about half of them are Shia, so the community in Mexico is smaller than it is in other places. Still, Hezbollah will use it to hide operatives. Sources tell STRATFOR that Hezbollah and the Iranians are involved in several small Islamic centers in Mexican cities such as Torreon, Chihuahua City and Monterrey. They also have an active presence in Shiite Islamic centers in border towns on both sides of the border and use these centers to coordinate cross-border smuggling of contraband and operatives.

Arrestors

Hezbollah has a group of operatives capable of undertaking terrorist missions that is larger and better-trained than any group al Qaeda has ever had. Hezbollah (and its Iranian patrons) have also established a solid foothold in the Americas, and they have demonstrated a capability to use their global logistics network to move operatives and conduct attacks should they so choose. This is what U.S. government officials fear, and what the Iranians want them to fear. The threat posed by Hezbollah's militant apparatus has always been a serious one, and Hezbollah has long had a significant presence inside the United States. The threat it poses today is not some new, growing phenomenon, as some reports in the press would suggest.

But despite Hezbollah's transnational terrorism capabilities, it has not chosen to exercise them outside of its home region for many years now. This is due in large part to the way Hezbollah has matured as an organization. It is no longer the new, shadowy organization it was in 1983 but a large global organization with an address. Its assets and personnel can be identified and seized or attacked. Hezbollah understands that a serious terrorist attack or series of attacks on U.S. soil could result in the type of American reaction that followed the 9/11 attack and that the organization would likely end up on the receiving end of the type of campaign that the United States launched against al Qaeda (and Lebanon is far easier to strike than Afghanistan). In the past, Hezbollah (and its Iranian patrons) have worked hard to sow ambiguity and hide responsibility for terrorist attacks, but as Hezbollah matured as an organization, such subterfuge became more difficult.

There is also international public opinion to consider. Hezbollah is a political organization seeking political legitimacy, and it is one thing for it to be seen as a victim of Israeli aggression when standing up to Israeli forces in southern Lebanon and quite another to be seen killing innocent civilians on the other side of the globe.

Hezbollah also sees the United States (and the rest of the Western Hemisphere) as a wonderful place to make money through its array of legal and illegal enterprises. If it angered the United States, its business interests in the Western Hemisphere would be severely impacted. Hezbollah could conduct attacks in the United States, but it would pay a terrible price for doing so, and it does not appear that it is willing to pay that price. The Hezbollah leadership may be radical, but it is not irrational. Many of the senior Hezbollah leaders have matured since the group was founded and have become influential politicians and wealthy businessmen. This older cadre tends to be more moderate than some of the younger firebrands in the organization.

So, while Hezbollah has the capability to attack U.S. interests, it does not currently possess the intent to do so. Its terrorist attacks in Lebanon in the 1980s, like the bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks and the two attacks against the U.S. Embassy, were intended to drive U.S. influence out of Lebanon, and the attacks largely succeeded. An attack by Hezbollah inside the United States today would result in the return of U.S. attention to, and perhaps even a presence in, Lebanon, something that is clearly not in Hezbollah's interests.

Then why the recurring rumors of impending Hezbollah terrorist attacks? For several years now, every time there has been talk of a possible attack on Iran there has been a corresponding threat by Iran that it will use its proxy groups in response to such an attack. Iran has also been busy pushing intelligence reports to anybody who will listen, including STRATFOR, that it will activate its militant proxy groups if attacked and, to back up that threat, will periodically send IRGC-QF, MOIS or Hezbollah operatives out to conduct not-so-subtle surveillance of potential targets. (They clearly want to be seen undertaking such activity.)

In many ways, the Hezbollah threat is being played up in order to provide the type of deterrent that mutually assured destruction did during the Cold War. The threats of unleashing Hezbollah terrorist attacks and closing the Strait of Hormuz are the most potent deterrents Iran has to being attacked. Since Iran does not yet possess a nuclear arsenal, these threats are the closest thing it has to a "real nuclear option." As such, they are threats that Iran will make good on only as a last resort.

Contact BenAmi by email at farmer@012.net.il

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RECLAIMING ISRAEL'S NARRATIVE OF FREEDOM
Posted by Hadar Israel, August 15, 2010.
 

Dear Friends,

Hadar-Israel is the new action and leadership organization in Israel that is dedicated to the ongoing process of building our state so that it represents the very best of the Jewish people. For information on how you can get involved email info@hadar-israel.org or call 02-650-3235.

Hadar-Israel has worked hard to develop an important Israel advocacy effort. The following op-ed, written by our director Shalom Helman and published in the Jerusalem Post, gives a glimpse into our strategic thinking. We look forward to your feedback and to working together with you as we launch new initiatives to restore Israel's vision of national liberation.

Become a Hadar-Israel Partner

Thanks to our friends who have already joined us as Hadar-Israel Partners. By making an annual financial contribution you support our efforts to strengthen Israel "inside and out" and become part of our growing community of activists. For more information on how to join us go to our website
http://hadar-israel.org.

This article was written by Shalom Helman, Director of Hadar-Israel Council for Civic Action, a non-profit organization based in Israel. Contact them at www.hadar-israel.org. It appeared yesterday in the Jerusalem Post
http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Op-EdContributors/ Article.aspx?id=184754

 

Public diplomacy will not succeed until we can unabashedly declare the story of who we are and why we are here.

Israel has lost the plot. To be precise, we have lost our plot. We are like tragic characters trying to find the story line in an absurd existentialist play. We have forgotten our narrative. Whether from self-imposed amnesia or a wistful yearning for "normality," we are no longer able to articulate our remarkable story to ourselves or to the world.

Those who say we must go "beyond the conflict" to win the battle for international public opinion are half-right — of course we should tell of the stunning achievements of modern Israel. But public diplomacy will not succeed until we can unabashedly declare the story of who we are and why we are here.

Google "why should Israel exist" and most of what pops up is vitriolic hate about why Israel shouldn't. If we are going to advocate for Israel, we must proactively and dramatically present the essential value that Israel stands for in the world and that frames all our actions and our efforts at self-defense.

That value is freedom.
 

IN NATAN Sharansky's inspiring book The Case for Democracy; the Power of Freedom to Overcome Tyranny and Terror he argues that "all peoples desire to be free" including the Palestinian Arabs, and that "freedom has the power to change our world."

But one thing Sharansky doesn't emphasize is that the Jewish people are the original and quintessential national liberation movement.

From the Exodus from Egypt to the struggle against British rule that led directly to the founding of the State of Israel, the unfinished story of Israel is our march to freedom. Modern Israel is the solution to the perennial problem of Jewish homelessness. It is the miraculous culmination of 2,000 years of yearning to recover sovereignty and self-rule in our land.

Israel needs to retell the story of the ingathering of Jewish exiles from every corner of the Earth — both before and after the devastation of the Shoah — individuals who joined the unbroken historical chain of Jews living in the Land of Israel. We must once again proudly trumpet the extraordinary pioneers who found their way, against enormous obstacles, to their ancestral homeland — right up to and including today — and who with through their sweat and determination built a new future for themselves and the Jewish nation.

We must talk again of how we sacrificed many of our best and brightest youth who served valiantly in a citizen's army to protect their families and keep the fledgling Jewish state free from invading armies.

Our march to national freedom is unique. What other nation, dispersed for thousands of years and disparaged as without hope, has rebounded to full vitality? What other people whose identity was so brutally repressed shook the foundations of a great empire and forced the release of over a million people, as happened when the "refuseniks" were brought to Israel through the "Free Soviet Jewry" campaign? What other modern state heard the cries of their brothers and sisters separated for centuries in the heart of Africa and launched "Operation Solomon" to fly thousands of endangered Ethiopian Black Jews to freedom in their ancestral home? And what of the heroic tales we still hear every day of Jewish immigrants who have made great personal sacrifices to raise families here? What of the unprecedented creativity that led to breakthroughs in fields like medicine and green technology? What of the unique blend of cultures and traditions that have revived the ancient Hebrew language and forged a living, dynamic culture? IN 1948 most of the world recognized the extraordinary rebirth that took place here. Today, Israel receives attention — albeit most of it negative — that is out of all proportion to our size or importance. It is as if the world continues to expect great developments in the human journey to emerge in this land.

Indeed, Israel is a crucible of freedom today no less than in 1948. We are on the front line of the embattled democratic states fighting against terrorism and tyranny.

What happens to the Jewish people will indicate whether the world truly cherishes the value of freedom and will fight to preserve it.

Israel as the Jewish home continues to be under threat from violent attack and insidious de-legitimization.

There are those who say it is too difficult to turn the negative tide of public opinion, whether in global forums or on university campuses.

We must not allow this to lead us into despair; we must act by restoring our core narrative of freedom.

We can energize a grassroots network of supporters around the world. Together, we can tell the story of Israel as the fulfillment of the Jewish people's long march to national liberation in our land — a beacon of hope for humankind.

Hadar Israel is the Council for Civic Action.

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JONATHAN POLLARD SHARES WIFE'S PERSONAL BIRTHDAY LETTER
Posted by Miki and Herb Sunshine, August 15, 2010.

(Israelnationalnews.com) Jonathan Pollard received the following letter from his wife, Esther, in time for his birthday on August 7th. At Jonathan's request, the Justice for Jonathan Pollard organization is sharing the letter with the public.

 

B"H
Jerusalem, August 1, 2010

My Beloved Jonathan,

I don't really know how to write this letter. I want so badly to help you. I need to make you understand things that I barely understand.

What I do know is that we have spent a very, very long time trying to attack a problem logically, when that problem is totally resistant to logic.

You have every right to be angry. You have every right to be depressed. You have every right to hate. And I certainly do not have any right to tell you otherwise or to try to mitigate your anger or your hate. Maybe they are necessary. Maybe they are a part of the divine plan.

I am angry too, though I try not to dwell on my anger. I am frustrated and tired and worn out, and like you, have not been feeling well for so long that I really do not remember when I last felt well. Everything is a question of degree.

If I get this letter done tonight, it looks like it will arrive for your secular birthday, if you are not yet home by then. So as my gift to you, why don't I just try to speak what is in my heart, without varnish or sugar coating.

If I did not believe in G-d; if I did not believe that we are souls having a human experience (as opposed to our being humans having a spiritual experience); if I did not believe in gilgul ha'nishamot (the reincarnation of souls); if I did not believe in Jewish History or the Jewish Prophesies; if I did not believe in the ultimate redemption of the Jewish People and the coming of Moshiach; if I did not believe in any of these, then I also would not believe in the concept of soul mates. Without belief in the concept of soul mates, and the clear understanding that I was born to be your helpmate, your ezer knegdo, your opposite half in this lifetime, then it could be said that it was my choice to marry you and my choice to take on a lifetime of travail and suffering instead of choosing an easier path by choosing another mate.

Often I think about how my life looks through the eyes of someone who does not believe in G-d, in Jewish destiny, or in soul mates. I know people like that. Ones I have spoken with, tell me that they think I am pretty foolish to have made such poor choices and to have ended up in this not-married, not-single state of perpetual longing and endless suffering, coupled with endless hard work rolling the boulder uphill only to have it roll down again, and then to start all over again. I have been told, by well-meaning meddlers, on numerous occasions, that I have or had so many talents and merits, why did I have to get involved with someone in prison? Better yet, with someone with a life sentence?

People who have no concept of eternity or of G-d's absolute rule of the world, cannot fathom that I did not have a choice. That the only reason I was born into this life was to accompany you on your tragic/majestic journey from darkness (lots and lots of darkness) to light (o when o when will it appear! — But appear it must!)

People who have no concept of eternal life have no way to grasp that you volunteered for this mission long ago in the world of souls, and I volunteered to go with you. The sorrow, the frustration, the suffering, the anguish, the depression, the despair and the anger are actually fleeting in terms of eternity. But in terms of a human lifetime they have been overwhelming, relentless and unending. No one in their right human mind would knowingly volunteer to take on any lifetime that is this difficult. But as souls, we did. That is, you did. And I could not let you go it alone, so I did as well. But only to follow you.

As you so aptly put it, not so long ago, we are both partly in prison and we are both partly free. That is how bound up in each other we are.

Having said that, there are some differences in our perspective. Apparently those differences are what allow each of us to survive our respective Gehinoms.

I don't understand, and never did understand your ability and your will to keep fighting and fighting and fighting. I am not built that way. I give up. I don't give up in despair or in defeat. I just pull back and hand it back to G-d. That makes you angry. You don't like when I say that. Ok, so for the last 10 years that I have been feeling that way, you and others kept pulling me back into the fight, into yet another initiative and another initiative and another attempt to move things forward and another interview and another TV show and another essay and another Bagatz and another lawsuit and another petition and another this, that and the other.

Doing all these useless things has brought collateral results, but no progress on the main issue at hand. Each initiative has built us into better, stronger, more sensitive, believing Jews, with a much closer connection to the Almighty. Each initiative has created more public awareness. Each initiative has brought more people to pray, to participate, to engage and to earn their share in eternity by attaching to this mitzvah. Each initiative has had its effect in Heaven and someday, after 120 years, we will, B"H understand how all these things contributed in a major way to bringing the final redemption to the Jewish People and to the Land.

For now, we do not have that glimpse beyond the veil. For the moment, all we have is the sure knowledge that we are not in control. That this case is a cosmic quagmire that is impervious to human efforts. It is so resistant to all of the human remedies that have been attempted over the last 2 ½ decades that that in itself is miraculous — by that I mean, clearly supernatural.

Any purely objective, non-cosmic look at the situation is mind-boggling. How is it that we have gone through endless campaigns, letters, petitions, lawsuits, demos, lobbying, etc etc for 25 years, and in those 25 years we have not moved forward one single centimeter? (Or one inch, if you prefer.) On the contrary, we have watched those who sought your demise from the outset, become more entrenched in their murderous positions. We have watched those who were indifferent, become more indifferent. We have watched those who were wantonly irresponsible and cruel, redouble their brazen irresponsibility and their calculated cruelty. In summary, even you, my love, must admit that what we have seen over the last 25 years is truly Biblical in proportion, and NOT natural!

And that is the fact that even you, even in the Hellish pit of Snakes and Scorpions where you make your bed, even you must admit, this case is not following the natural course of events. It is a lightening rod for those whose raison d'être is the uprooting of the rule of Heaven. This case is the sine qua non of those who arrogate to rule in place of G-d. Or more aptly put, this case is the exclusive property (on both sides of the pond) of those who are convinced that they rule the world.

"So what?" you ask.

So, we have to draw appropriate conclusions.

I admit that I do not really, fully understand your insistence that through your scientific initiatives you can buy your freedom. You know that that is not true.

Yes, it would make it better for you if you could be busy and immersed in your projects and if you could have the consultants you need. But it won't change the situation, and it won't bring you home.

Home is in G-d's hands. He has shown us that over and over and over and over again for the last 25 years, in some of the most unlikely ways. He has forced us to see that we are in control of nothing. That this case is bigger than us, and bigger than the fools who think that they are sitting on it. Bigger than the liars and the slanderers, bigger than the so-called leaders and rulers. This case is its own Tower of Babel and we all know who ultimately won that round.

When I am wearing my human-being glasses, I look in the mirror and I hate what I see. I hate seeing that so many years have left their mark. So many years, and we are still "nowhere". Still not together. No home. No children. No grandchildren. No life. After all these years, I look and I feel old and worn out and sad and defeated, and I shout at no one in particular, "Just leave me alone! I can't stand it any more, just leave me alone!" And then I think frantically, what to do, what to do, and there really isn't anything to do, or nothing we have not already done many times before, and there isn't anyone to ask, and our 5 minute phone calls don't lend themselves to real discussion, and the frustration and anguish just grow and grow and grow, and I think I want to quit, but there isn't even anyway of quitting! So I agonize over the only choice that it seems like I have, the choice to stay here and wait for you, or the choice to return to the States. And they are both difficult and unhappy choices at the moment.

When I am wearing my cosmic glasses (and it is so hard to keep those darned cosmic glasses on!) I am able to compartmentalize the agony, the anguish, the aging, the frustration, the despair and a whole host of very human, very reasonable, very normal emotions.

Years ago, you had me read a book "Shoah" by Rav Yoel Schwartz and Rav Yitzhak Goldstein on the Holocaust. And the one thing I learned from that book is how to understand the Biblical warning that if we are in violation of our commitment to Torah and G-d's rule, "your enemies will rejoice over you". Logically, the concept makes no sense. What does it mean for an enemy to rejoice over you? Enemies can triumph over you, they can pursue you, destroy you, damage you and so on, but what does it mean that they rejoice over you?

The answer is, it is considered "rejoicing over you" when your enemies pursue you and torment you beyond all proportion, even to their own detriment. It is when your enemies insist on harming you to the maximum extent that they possibly can, even when they derive no benefit whatsoever by doing so. The authors explain that our sages teach us that when the enemy rejoices over us, pursuing us beyond logic and beyond benefit, it is a clear sign that there is a heavenly process involved. That what is occurring is cosmic. A divine plan. Something we have no control over. Neither do our enemies, ultimately.

Please stop making facing, and dismissing what I am writing by saying "I know all this! I never doubted any of this, so why are you telling me this now?"

I am telling you this, in the hopes of convincing you to give yourself a break. I want you to understand that there is no logical, earthly reason for the way that our enemies have been rejoicing over us for the last 25 years. So many times and ways they could have benefitted by cutting us some slack, both here and in the US, and at many different levels, but their hatred, their intransigence, their cruelty, just overwhelms them. They cannot help themselves. They hate us beyond any possible benefit to themselves. They hate us as they hate G-d. They will never be won over by any logical means, because their hatred is not logical.

You told me tonight that you have no hope. You say that because you are unable to get anyone to help you, you are unable to get anything done and you have lost all hope of getting out. You say all you have is your anger and your hatred. You say that you have set a date in your mind by which you want me to come back to the USA. Perhaps a move to a new prison. A more humane prison environment, you say, may be available further north. There, at least, as you put it, we can be together.

I hope that when you see this written as it is in the paragraph above, you will see for yourself how erroneous this thinking is. It is not your inability to command or control others that deprives you of hope of relief. You know that isn't so. And it is not your energy projects that will turn the key in the lock. Because if it were anything logical like that, then any other number of logical things that have already been tried would not have met with such supernatural failure.

Our anguish at being separated is indescribable. Our yearning to be together, to have a life, to live together, to build together, has been compared, and accurately so, to the yearning of the Shechinah to be reunited with the Jewish People. The agony of the passage of time is unbearable. I do not, for even one second, want to minimize the daily grind, the crushing weight of each day that passes without anything ostensibly changing, or the sheer disappointment, the misery of the years that have turned into decades of unfulfilled hopes and dreams.

Nor am I willing to discount, for even a second, the physical suffering that the circumstances have visited on both of us. An entire book could be written and still not explain how you have managed to survive the physical threats to your person, for 25 long years, day in day out, suffering and in pain with no relief for years on end. Lurching from one medical emergency to the next, with no respite.

As for me, as I indicated above, it has been so long since I have felt well, that I no longer remember what feeling well feels like. I am just glad when there is no pain, or when I can actually wear clothes, because so much of the time, I can't stand the feel of anything, and certainly nothing that binds or even touches me, like elastic. In summary, I am in no way minimizing your pain and suffering or mine, on a daily basis, for the last 2 decades and more.

What I am trying to do, is to manage the pain and to make sense of it by wearing my cosmic glasses. (Those darn cosmic glasses that keep slipping down off of my nose!)

It is precisely because things are so bad and have been for so long that this has to end. Cosmic dramas always end when least expected. And they end, as the Rav zt"l predicted, suddenly and swiftly, and in a way that no one anticipates. It is precisely when all the Earthly doors have closed, that the Heavenly doors open. It is precisely when we throw our hands up and say, "I have done all that I can; HaShem, now it is all up to you," that the answer comes.

This is not wishful thinking.

You are not a private person. This case is not just about you. Your suffering is not just about you. Your anguish and your misery is not just about you. Nor is it about me.

You are the personification of a living, breathing, on-going vital chapter in Jewish History. You are a cosmic key to the redemption of the Jewish people. You are, like it or lump it, the one! Your survival causes us all to survive. Your wholeness intellectually and spiritually saves us daily as a People. Your physical and emotional suffering reflects the disintegration of the State and its Erev Rav elite, the way it is coming apart at the seams, and your suffering is atoning for the People.

Because it is all cosmic, it can and will end any second that HaShem chooses. It can and will end, as a Kiddush HaShem, not because of any earthly logical reason. In fact it will end in spite of all earthly logic and reason! Your release is synonymous with the release of the Shechinah from galut. Your release is tied up with the Moshiach Ben David's return to the Land. Your release is bound to the redemption of the land and people of Israel. You do not need me to enunciate all the Mekubalim who have agreed with the Rav's passkining on this matter. You can see it and feel it for yourself. So many people see it and feel it, and they write to you, and you know in your heart that what they write is true.

As wretched as you feel for the moment, you know who you are, and you know that you have a bright, long, good, important and critical Jewish future ahead of you. You KNOW that your release is critical to the continuation of Jewish History according to the Prophesies, according to the Torah of Moshe and the wisdom of our sages. The Gematriot uphold this. The terrible, terrible times, which we are living through, were also predicted with the same impeccable divine accuracy. It is all just a question of time. And because it is cosmic time we are talking about, every minute brings new hope. Yeshuat HaShem K'heref Aiyn! (Salvation from HaShem occurs in the wink of an eye!)

And so, my beloved sweetheart, love of my life, dear soul mate, Yehonatan ben Malka Halevy, for all these reasons and more, I continue to await your arrival, every single minute of every single day, here in the Land.. I don't know where the Medina is heading. I know it isn't going our way. But I am here, in the Land, which is eternally ours, and eternally strong, waiting for you.

In spite of the pain, the waiting, the anguish, I know in my heart that you, along with the Shechinah and Moshiach Ben David, will soon return home, to our joy and to the relief of those who love HaShem's Torah and His Land. What we have lost will be returned; what was broken will be fixed, what was impaired will be restored, what was diminished will be increased, and we will have the love and the life we have so desired, together, here in the Land, G-d willing, in the wink of an eye, and soon.

So forgive me, my love, for not sharing your momentary vision of a hopeless future back in galut, sitting in a prison visit room, staring into each other's eyes and seeing nothing there but the pain and the longing, and feeling nothing but despair and anguish. I know that you do not believe in this vision either. You are tired, not well, worn out, disappointed, so for the moment, you let sitra achra have a little free reign, and this is the horrible vision it proposes. We both know that this vision is shekker. And we both reject it.

Holy, beloved, sweet, righteous Gibor Yisrael [Hero of Israel], let me end with this:

In one of our recent conversations, I told you, my beloved husband, "Jonathan, do you realize that Kavod HaRav never called me 'the Esther HaMalka [Queen Esther] of our generation'?"

"That's true, you, agreed.

"And did you ever stop to think why he never called me the Esther HaMalka of our generation?"

"Tell me why you think so," you replied

"Because, as you always point out, Jonathan, the Rav only spoke truth! The Rav never flattered anyone, never pandered to anyone, never softened the truth to please anyone. He would never have said that I am the Esther HaMalka of our generation, because I am not!"

"And so?" you replied.

"My point is that if the Rav repeatedly said that you are the Yosef HaTzadik of our generation it was not intended as a compliment, nor a balm for your tired soul. It was meant as a statement of truth, as a fact. It was meant for you to understand the degree to which you are participating in Jewish history. It was meant for others to understand how critical your redemption is to the redemption of the Jewish people as a whole. Those who ignore this, ignore at their own peril."

Jonathan, my love, you did not respond. You have too much humility for that. But I know you, my dear husband; I know you well enough to know that you understood that this is so, that Kavod HaRav's words were a statement of fact and that the long, drawn out, incredibly inhumane trial that you are living through and the endless afflictions you are suffering, count a whole lot more than any of us really understands.

For the moment, all we need to know, all we need to understand, is that this is a divine plan, the most sublime, most difficult divine plan that is destined to culminate in the redemption of a lot more than just Jonathan and Esther Pollard. Because it is divine, because it is Jewish history, and because Jewish history is teleological, it must end, and end well. We simply have no choice, but to hang on. To hang on with one hand stretched out to the Almighty, and the other hand clutching tenaciously to our cosmic glasses.

We are going to make it. This will end as suddenly and as surprisingly as it began. Most important of all, it will end as an enormous Kiddush HaShem. Amain!

I am waiting here for you. You are the love of my life. My soul mate. My reason for living, breathing, laughing, crying, my everything. G-d watch over you and bless you and speed you home to my loving arms. Together we will serve HaShem, here in the Land. And we can start, B"H by celebrating your birthday and making a seudat Hodayah to Hashem. Amain!

Happy Birthday, sweetheart. G-d speed you home, alive, well, and in mighty spirits and soon! Amain!

Much much love,
Now and always,
Your own

Esther Yocheved.

--

J4JP note:
References to "the Rav" or "Kavod HaRav" refer to His Honor, Kavod HaRav Mordechai Eliyahu, ztvk"l, the Pollards' beloved rabbi, moreh derech [guide] and adoptive father, who recently passed away. May his memory be a blessing for all of Israel.

Herb Sunshine is a lawyer, qualified to practice in U.S.A. and Israel. He and his wife Miki live in Jerusalem. Contact them by email at hms1@bezeqint.net

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AN IRANIAN CONNECTION TO THE CORDOBA HOUSE GROUND ZERO MOSQUE?
Posted by Eye on the UN, August 13, 2010.

Why has the Cordoba website just removed a photograph of Iranian Mohammad Javad Larijani, secretary-general of the High Council for Human Rights in Iran? The unanswered questions keep mounting.

This article by Anne Bayefsky appears today on PajamasMedia.com.

 

A Cordoba-Iranian connection? What exactly is "Islamicity"?

More questions have arisen about the attempt to build a mosque adjacent to Ground Zero, as part of the so-called Cordoba Initiative. In particular, why has the Cordoba website just removed a photograph of Iranian Mohammad Javad Larijani, secretary-general of the High Council for Human Rights in Iran? Is the move an attempted cover-up of their Iranian connections?

Two weeks ago the Cordoba Initiative website featured a photograph of the project's chairman, Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, and Iranian Mohammad Javad Larijani at an event that the Initiative sponsored in Malaysia in 2008. This week, the photograph, which appears below, has disappeared.

Larijani was the Iranian representative who defended Iran's abysmal human rights record before the UN Human Rights Council in February and June of this year. Among other things, Larijani told the Council: "Torture is one thing and punishment is another thing. ... This is a conceptual dispute. Some forms of these punishments should not be considered torture according to our law." By which he meant flogging, amputation, stoning, and the criminalization of homosexuality, which are all part of Iranian legal standards. Larijani added: "Iran [has a] firm commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights. ... The Islamic Republic of Iran ... is a democracy," which would be news to the pro-democracy activists murdered or confined to Iranian prisons since last year's fraudulent elections.

The Iranian connection to the launch of Cordoba House may go beyond a relationship between Rauf and Larijani. The Cordoba Initiative lists one of its three major partners as the UN's Alliance of Civilizations. The Alliance has its roots in the Iranian-driven "Dialogue Among Civilizations," the brainchild of former Iranian President Hojjatoleslam Seyyed Mohammad Khatami. Khatami is now a member of the High-level Group which "guides the work of the Alliance." His personal presidential qualifications include the pursuit of nuclear weapons, a major crackdown on Iranian media, and rounding up and imprisoning Jews on trumped-up charges of spying. Alliance reports claim Israel lies at the heart of problems associated with "cross-cultural relations," since the "Israeli-Palestinian conflict" and "Israel's continuing occupation of Palestinian and other Arab territories ... are primary causes of resentment and anger in the Muslim world toward Western nations."

In addition, a Weekly Standard article in July suggested that the idea of building an Islamic memorial in lower Manhattan may have originated back in 2003 with two Iranian brothers: M. Jafar "Amir" Mahallati, who served as ambassador of the Iranian Islamic Republic to the United Nations from 1987 to 1989, and M. Hossein Mahallati.

Also pictured at the same Cordoba-sponsored meeting is U.S. representative to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, Sada Cumber. The meeting was part of the Initiative's so-called "Shariah Index Project," a plan to rank and measure the "Islamicity" of a state or "how well ... nations comply in practice with this Islamic legal benchmark of an Islamic State."

In July of last year, Cordoba chief Rauf was interviewed by a reporter for Abu Dhabi Media about the Shariah Index Project. He told The National, "Determining Islamic principles had been the easy part." Easy, but not available for examination to the residents of New York City or to the loved ones of 9/11 victims. Despite multiple references to the Initiative's publication more than a year ago of a book "on the concept of measuring a nation's 'Islamicity,'" a request for a copy of the book made directly to the New York-based Cordoba Initiative resulted in a denial of the book's existence.

The unanswered questions keep mounting.

Contact Eye on the UN by email at list@eyeontheun.org

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MUSLIM HOAX: DESTROYED MUSLIM GRAVES IN JERUSALEM WERE 'FAKE'
Posted by Daily Alert, August 13, 2010.

This is an AFP news item.
www.france24.com/en/20100812-destroyed-muslim- graves-jerusalem-were-fake-israel

 

AFP — Around 300 Muslim gravestones destroyed by Israeli bulldozers in a Jerusalem cemetery earlier this week were "fake" and set up in a bid to snatch government land, the city charged on Thursday.

The allegation was flatly denied by the Islamic Movement which earlier this week accused the municipality of razing recently renovated Muslim graves in a centuries-old cemetery in a large park in mostly Jewish west Jerusalem.

In its first official response to the claims, the Jerusalem city council on Thursday acknowledged it had removed some 300 tombstones, but said they were not erected over any human remains.

"The municipality and the (Israel Lands) Authority destroyed around 300 dummy gravestones which were set up illegally in Independence Park on public land.

"The court approved the removal of all the dummy gravestones which were laid in the last seven months," the municipality said in a written statement sent to AFP.

"This is a fraudulent set up, one of the biggest in recent years, whose aim is to illegally take over state land."

Underneath the tombstones excavators found only "plastic bottles, cigarette packets and parts of a sprinkler system," the statement said. It accused "Islamic elements" of trying to pull off a huge scam.

But the Islamic Movement completely denied the graves were fake, saying all of them contained bodies.

"Around 300 renovated tombs have been destroyed by the municipality over the last four days," said Mahmud Abu Atta, a spokesman for the Al-Aqsa Foundation which is linked to the Islamic Movement.

"All the tombs that we built or renovated contain bodies. We are 100 percent sure of that," he told AFP.

Abu Atta said that between 500 and 600 tombs had been renovated in total "with the municipality?s agreement.

"Some of the tombs had to be totally rebuilt," he said, denying the council's claim they were new tombs added illegally.

Jerusalem city council warned it would continue its demolition efforts until all the "fictitious gravestones" had been removed in order "to prevent every attempt at illegal building and the takeover of public land."

The dispute erupted late on Monday when the Islamic Movement said Israeli bulldozers had begun destroying some 200 graves in the ancient cemetery at Mamilla in an operation witnessed by an AFP correspondent at the scene.

The bulldozers returned later in the day to destroy dozens more after a Jerusalem court rejected a petition to halt the work.

The demolition of the graves took place very close to the site of a planned Museum of Tolerance to be built by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a US-based Jewish human rights group.

The project has sparked controversy because it is being built on land belonging to the Ma'man Allah cemetery, commonly called Mamilla, which dates from the 12th century and is the resting place of several Sufi saints. [Editor's Note: News Item is Wrong. The Arabs were trying to grab land from the adjoining Independence Park — Gan HaAtzmaut]

Israel's 1.3 million Arab citizens include the descendants of Palestinians who remained in the Jewish state after the 1948 war that attended its creation.

[Note from Arutz-7: "Each new tombstone is dismantled only after an expert from the Antiquities Authority inspects it and confirms that it is indeed a new tombstone."]

The Daily Alert is sponsored by Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and prepared by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA). To subscribe to their free daily alerts, send an email to daily@www.dailyalert.jcpa.org

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PRESIDENT BACKS ISLAMIC COMPLEX NEAR GROUND ZERO IN NEW YORK
Posted by Paul Lademain, August 13, 2010.
 

O! Get this. Now BhusseinO is wagging his famous finger and lecturing us about American Values. If he had any, he would have insisted on the restoration of Glass-Steagall instead of the fake legislation he's passed off as financial reform. How many of you know that Goldman Sachs was one of the largest contributors to BhusseinO's campaign fund? And this is more than just the appearance of impropriety. It's the theft of the Oval Office by the "Manchurian Candidate" himself with the aid of K Street and the kleptocrats of D.C.

For a lawyer, BhusseinO has got to know he's lying. As a lawyer, he darn well knows that restricting the construction of any mosque or other denominational religious edifice near Ground Zero does NOT in any way abridge the free exercise of religion. (Mosques have suddenly sprung up across the country and this is proof enough of American values.) And let's not have any more blather about the sanctity of contracts. Contracts can be set aside if they materially affect our national interests, if they are impelled for the furtherance of sedition; if they are inherently ultra vires; if they are inherently fraudulent, if they adversely affect public welfare etc.

And there's no reason why a church or a mosque should be immune to eminent domain.

NYC's mayor Bloomberg made a fool of himself and this politician will go to any lengths rather than admit it. And BhusseinO is trying desperately to make a fool of us in order to insult the victims of jihad. Jihad is a pillar of islam; a violent undertaking against "infidels," that is against everyone who is not a muslim or their slave. BhusseinO was raised up a muslim and a muslim he will always be, proof being his willingness to sit at "Reverend Wright's" knee for 20 years, swallowing Wright's hair-raising hate-America screeds.

A mosque swelling up like an indecent erection next to Ground Zero to symbolically gloat over the graves of Americans slaughtered by muslims is unacceptable. Except it apparently is acceptable to that bunch of uneducated rich Jews in NYC who think they are bringing us tolerance by letting jihadists spit in our faces. Bloomberg is one of them. Curious minds want to know if there's some kind of quid pro quo going on here for Bloomberg--sorta like the scam planned by Shimon Peres and his "dearest-friend-in-peace, the bloody Egyptian terrorist Yasser Arafat, when the two of them set up their respective NGOs in the Cayman Islands in order to work together on their scheme to piece away Israel so their NGOs could own the profits from the the cellular and wireless phone system these two thieves planned to own andoperte for the new state of Palestine. According to reports, when the news leaked out about their scheme, Peres quickly folded his Cayman Islands entity and pretended to the Gullibles of Israel that he is a just an old man fighting (against Israel) for the sake of peace.

To hell with BHO, no mosque. No church. No synagogue. Just the memorial. Period. And impeach Hillary for using the State Dept. to fund Rauf's traveling circus throughout the middle east. The woman has begun to look like she desperately needs a long vacation.

Contact Paul Lademain by email at lademain@verizon.net.

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FROM ISRAEL: WEARY
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 13, 2010.
 

I hate to go into Shabbat with this sort of message, but it's a simple fact: What's going on around me has been making me soul weary. It's not just that things are tough. It's that there is stupidity and malice, and a good deal of self-serving behavior. Just sometimes, it feels a bit like standing at the center of Maelstrom (a whirlpool) with events moving about me faster than I can keep track of them all — some of those events foolish and some deadly serious.

~~~~~~~~~~

I thought, after my last post, I was done for a while with Ground Zero mosque issues, but it seems not.

From Daniel Halper in the Weekly Standard, I have learned that a statement by Mayor Bloomberg defending the construction of a mosque at Ground Zero was run verbatim on a website affiliate with the State Department. And his comment was the only one that ran.

After a "no comment" from a State Department representative, State's spokesman, P.J. Crowley (whom I seem to be citing frequently these days) has now offered an explanation:

The State Department does "not take a position" on the Ground Zero mosque but merely wanted to help people abroad "understand" the debate on the issue:

"The posting on www.america.gov was geared toward helping people elsewhere understand both an issue of some debate in this country, but most importantly that we were going to be guided in resolving this issue by our values...And we thought it was useful for them to hear directly from one of the participants in this issue, Mayor Bloomberg."

Commented Halper: "Considering the myriad opinions on this topic, picking a single set of remarks, and choosing to publish those but not others, could be considered an endorsement of sort of that particular position. But Crowley vigorously denied this was the case."

You didn't expect balance from the State Department, did you?
http://weeklystandard.com/blogs/state-dept-defend- publishing-bloomberg-remarks-ground-zero-mosque

~~~~~~~~~~

And then there's the flotilla incident and the never-ending news about it. Two matters with regard to this to report here. One is the fact that Turkey is now starting its own investigation. Sigh...

But then, the Turkel Commission testimony — which, as I've indicated, is an internal Israeli affair — and related issues, for me far more soul-wearying than Turkey's decision:

When PM Netanyahu testified, he said that he was out of the country at the time (in Canada) and Defense Minister Ehud Barak was in charge. The seven-minister inner cabinet, he said, discussed only public relations aspects of the situation.

When Barak testified before the Commission, he said, contradicting the prime minister, that, "The decision to stop the flotilla, which was made by the prime minister and the seven-minister forum, was arrived at after examining the entire situation and the dilemmas...the discussion that was held by the seven-minister forum dealt not only with the media aspects of stopping the flotilla, but also with the military aspects."

Barak reported that Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi was present, and, while raising PR concerns, said, "It won't be easy, but we will carry out the mission."

According to Barak, while it was understood that this would be tough, no one imagined that there would be violent resistance aboard the Marmara. If major problems were anticipated, he said, it would have been up to the IDF to raise them.

~~~~~~~~~~

When finally Chief of Staff Ashkenazi spoke, he said, forthrightly, that he takes responsibility for what happened. "The commandos exhibited calm, bravery and morality in accordance with IDF values...From the moment the operation began, it was clear that the circumstances were unprecedented."

Ashkenazi then spoke about what was not anticipated and what mistakes were made, adding that, "The IDF is a transparently controlled organization which studies from its mistakes and is committed to examine its actions and investigate every operation."

~~~~~~~~~~

Herb Keinon, writing in the JPost, made an additional point: This testimony was for the Commission. Both Netanyahu and Barak — whose Commission testimony was filled with "yes, but" qualifiers — then changed their stories when speaking to the press, or having their PR people to do so. For the Commission, it seemed wise to them to avoid responsibility for the flotilla mistakes as much as possible. For the public, they deemed it wiser to seem to be leaders of strength.

Ashkenazi, said Keinon, was the only one who didn't change his story. He was the "man's man" in this situation, and came out looking the best.

~~~~~~~~~~

OK, now enter Minister of Strategic Affairs Moshe Ya'alon. Lt. Gen. Ya'alon was once chief of staff himself. I consider him both tough minded and relatively speaking (all these guys are self-serving to some degree) very much a straight shooter.

In a closed forum, in a private home, he made comments about the testimony, which have now become public. Naturally. "He didn't let anyone get involved and now he's shifting responsibility on everyone," said Ya'alon, referring to Barak. Agreeing with Netanyahu, he said that the inner cabinet did discuss only PR issues.

Then he added, "the events of the past week emphasize what I have been saying about the snakes in the Kirya base (the IDF and defense minister's headquarters)."

[Note: in Netanyahu's absence, Ya'alon was acting PM at some basic level, but my impression is that he had no opportunity to call the shots and that Barak rather steam-rolled him in controlling the meeting.]

~~~~~~~~~~

So, we must first cry out with the most obvious of questions: Dear Heaven, where are our leaders in this difficult time for Israel?

Then we have to wonder if and how this will weaken or tear apart the coalition. Severe tension between Barak and Ya'alon is inevitable. Especially is this so because of other tensions (which I won't explore here) involving Barak and Ashkenazi, who is to be replaced as chief of staff shortly.

Already Labor is saying that if Netanyahu doesn't either publicly chastise Ya'alon or relieve him of his position, Labor will consider leaving the government. The vast likelihood is that Netanyahu will do his best, in his style, to smooth matters over. But I ponder as well how completely he is willing to swallow Barak's duplicity (as Barak blatantly and fallaciously contradicted Netanyahu's testimony to protect himself) in order to keep his government together.

~~~~~~~~~~

One thing I will say without equivocation. Barak IS a snake in the grass. He has been behaving abominably with regard to communities in Judea and Samaria, eager to flex his leftist muscles. If there were a way to get rid of him as defense minister, without a collapse of the coalition that would end up bring in Livni, it would be a great blessing for the nation.

The ideal would be to place Ya'alon in that position, but that's a pipe dream and will not happen.

~~~~~~~~~~

Switching to another "fun" subject: PM president Mahmoud Abbas was in Cairo this week, and reported to President Mubarak, and then Jordan's King Abdullah, who was also in Egypt, that he is under huge pressure from the US and the EU to come to the negotiating table.

Abbas is worried that he is going to suffer loss of funds from both the US and the EU, if he doesn't go along. There are hints, no more than hints at this point, that he thus may be caving. Not now...but headed in that direction. JPost editor David Horovitz says Abbas was in Egypt to consult with Mubarak and Abdullah about "bowing to the inevitable." There are some suggestions that talks might begin after Ramadan, which has just begun.

It seems to me that if Abbas does move forward he will expect some sort of face-saving concessions, even if he doesn't get everything he originally demanded. Saving face is no small matter in the Arab culture.

A report from Reuters has it that the Quartet is working on a statement that would set a basis for direct negotiations.

~~~~~~~~~~

Let's end with something good:

A plan is soon to be approved by PM Netanyahu, reports the JPost, that would turn Israel into a space superpower.

This is a multi-year plan that would have the government increase support of space research and development by large sums. The focus would be on developing new platforms for Israel's niche market — "mini satellites — that would hopefully yield billions in sales.

According to Professor Haim Eshed, head of the Defense Ministry's Space Division, who participated in drafting the plan, Israel is one of the few countries that can independently develop, manufacture, and launch satellites. Investment would go towards miniaturization of satellites and their payloads.

That is our specialty: We recently launched the Ofek 9 satellite, which weighs just a few hundred kilograms, compared to the satellites of the US and Russia, which weigh several tons.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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LESSONS OF THE PERLMAN AFFAIR
Posted by Steven Plaut, August 13, 2010.
 

This is called "Probe the 'peace process' and it was written by Dr. Ron Breiman, the former chairman of Professors for a Strong Israel. It appeared in YNet and is archived at
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/ 0,7340,L-3935474,00.html

Instead of probing flotilla incident, Israel should focus on truly momentous failures

 

These days, Israel is home to intensive acts of scrutiny that had already graced the country with the dubious label of "a state of all its inquiries." One should not disparage the need for commissions of inquiry, as long as their purpose is to identify the reasons for failures, in order to prevent them from repeating. The personal aspect should be secondary.

Regrettably, the shallow media (and mostly the electronic kind) seeks blood and wants to see heads roll — if possible along with a change of government not via the natural ballot-based way.

The last days, where our leaders testified before the needless Turkel committee, constitute an example of turning the essence — prevention of repeated failures — into the insignificant, while turning the insignificant — a witch hunt, especially against those disliked by the media — into the essence.

If there is a desirable and beneficial outcome for commissions of inquiry, it's the improvement in decision-making processes, and especially the integration of a risk assessment process — in advance — in respect to any operations of this type. Committees that would assess risks in advance, before making and implementing a decision, can spare us the failures, their cost, and subsequent commissions of inquiry.

In the case at hand, stopping the Turkish terror ship was an important act and the objective was achieved, yet the risks that could reasonably be assumed to exist on board the vessel were not predicted, thereby complicating the raid's execution. In fact, the working assumption was that no mishaps were expected.

Reckless media to blame

Indeed, we should be improving the decision-making process. Yet regrettably, the gravest decisions in Israel's history were taken without proper consideration, without profound public debate, without an appropriate, serious risk assessment, and through disregard for those who in real-time sounded the alarm regarding expected risks (which ultimately fully materialized and were much graver than the damages caused by the incident currently examined by the Turkel Committee.)

I am referring both to the "peace process," which as opposed to the delusions spread by the false prophets who marketed it prompted the Oslo War, and to the Gaza Disengagement, which did not only turn Jews into refugees in their own country, but also worsened Israel's diplomatic and security situation, ultimately leading up to the terror flotilla and its outcome.

The decision-making processes in these two fateful cases lacked a simultaneous process of risk assessment, as well as an advance decision regarding the kind of circumstances that would halt the execution of these decisions. In both cases, no exit strategies were formulated. Moreover, the cost was not estimated in advance — both in terms of casualties as well as in diplomatic, security, and economic terms.

In both cases, even after the grave implications were revealed, no conclusions were drawn on the organizational or personal level. Indeed, our leaders — including the current ones — are plotting to continue in the directions that had been proven to be erroneous. In these cases too, the working assumption was that mishaps are not expected.

Yet it is precisely these two fateful cases that prompted no official commissions of inquiry even retroactively, after the extent of the failure was revealed to all. The reckless media, which marketed both the "peace process" and the "disengagement" enthusiastically and uncritically, without demanding an advance risk assessment and without strongly cautioning us of the risks, are also the ones that kept silent later and silenced the failures after the fact — in order to avoid revealing the kind of misdeeds they were party to, both in advance and retroactively.


"So let us sum up the Perlman affair."
by Steven Plaut

So let us sum up the Perlman affair. About 12 years back, two Arabs were murdered in Jerusalem. The police were unable to track down the killer(s). They suspected radical right-wing Jews from the Kahanist splinters. After all, Kahanists are routinely involved in evil things like wearing racist Tee shirts that carry anti-Arab slogans.

A few weeks back, the "Jewish Section" of the Shin Bet decided that Chaim Perlman was the killer. He is a Kahanist radical and activist. The "Jewish Section" of the Shin Bet stalks and monitors Jewish right-wingers and "settler" activists. It increased its surveillance activities after the murder of Rabin by Yigal Amir. It NEVER, I repeat NEVER, monitors or carries out surveillance against radical Israeli Jewish leftists involved in espionage and treason.

The leftist media had a field day. The very same newspapers who obsessively refer to all Arab mass murderers of Jews as "activists" and militants" went hog wild denouncing the "Jewish terrorist." They suddenly discovered the "T" word!

It is not clear just what the Shin Bet had on Perlman, but the young Perlman was whisked away about a month ago to prison, held incommunicado, prevented from meeting a lawyer for 15 days. Not a single "human rights" NGO in Israel or abroad protested the denial of habeas corpus in the case. Three of Perlman's friends were also arrested, evidently suspected of being his friends. One wag is now selling "Arrest Me! I am a Friend of Chaim Perlman" tee shirts and bumper stickers.

Well, as it turns out the Shin Bet had no evidence at all that Perlman was the killer, at least none it could present in court. After being held for a month, the same Petah Tikva court that had issued the arrest warrant at the Shin Bet's request has ordered Perlman released, proclaiming that no incriminating evidence had been submitted to the court
(http://www.israelnationalnews.com/ News/News.aspx/139024).

The prosecution appealed and the court upheld the release order.
(See http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/ News.aspx/139082.)

Perlman, for what it is worth, claims the Shin Bet was trying to
frame him as part of its efforts to demonize right-wingers (http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/ News.aspx/138601).

Here is an idea. Instead of hounding "right-wingers," maybe the "Jewish section" of the Shin Bet should leave the investigation of suspected Jewish criminals to the police, and meanwhile investigate the REAL threats to Israeli security coming from Jews, the growing plague of leftist Jewish treason and espionage!

Leftists are already whining that if Perlman is released, then so should be the two Israeli Arabs now in prison for participating in an espionage ring. In other words, if Israel releases an innocent Jew then why should it not also release guilty Arabs?

Steven Plaut is an American-trained economist, a professor of business administration at Haifa University and author of "The Scout." He frequently comments — both seriously and satirically — on Israeli politics and the left wing academic community. Write him at stevenplaut@gmail.com His website address is
http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com.

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UNRWA CALLS ISRAELI TV PORTRAYAL OF PALESTINIAN REFUGEES A 'STACK OF LIES'
Posted by David Bedein, August 12, 2010.

UNRWA calls Israeli TV portrayal of Palestinian refugees a 'stack of lies' UN relief agency lashes out at Israel Broadcasting Authority for airing on national TV what it branded a dishonest portrayal of the organization.

This below was written by Gili Izikovich, Communications Correspondent, HaAretz. It is archived at
http://www.haaretz.com/misc/article-print-page/ unrwa-calls-israeli-tv-portrayal-of-palestinian- refugees-a-stack-of-lies-1.307225?trailing Path=2.169,2.225,2.226,

 

The United Nations' relief agency for Palestinian refugees, lashed out Tuesday at the Israel Broadcasting Authority for airing what it called a a dishonest portrayal of the organization on Saturday in "Ro'im Olam" on Channel 1 television.

The news magazine's anchor and the journalist behind the segment have fired back.

Journalist David Bedein's "For the Nakba",
http://forthesakeofnakba.blogspot.com/ UNRWA said, contains numerous inaccuracies about its operations in Palestinian refugee camps and educational institutions. It depicts large graffiti that lionize Palestinian suicide bombers and includes an interview with Palestinian children who profess a desire to become "martyrs."

"Ro'im Olam" presenter Yaakov Ahimeir sought comment from UNRWA's Christopher Gunness, who watched the segment before it aired. Gunness said he warned of numerous inaccuracies, which were never corrected.

In a letter written prior to the airing, Gunness said UNRWA schools do not contain murals of suicide bombers, and that the textbooks shown are for use by 12th graders, while UNRWA schools do not go beyond ninth grade.

Gunness said students making derogatory statements about Israel are not enrolled at UNRWA schools, whose pupils are identifiable by their school uniforms. The spokesperson added that UNRWA does not sanction events that officially mark the Nakba, as the segment suggested. Gunness denied the film's assertion that a student in an agency-run school was an 18-year-old suicide bomber.

Gunness accused Channel 1 of airing "a stack of lies," and said editing the errors was "a matter of integrity."

In response, Ahimeir said: "Chris Gunness viewed the film before the broadcast, and his response was broadcast in full." After he sent me additional material, Ahimeir said, "This was also read on the air by me as UNRWA's response."

Bedein denied Gunness' claims. Palestinian kids, he said, study the materials from the textbooks at a young age, and the mural of the suicide bomber was seen at the entrance of the UNRWA school at the Deheisheh refugee camp near Bethlehem.

DAVID BEDEIN responds:

There were three criticisms mentioned herein by HaAretz, each of which is easily refutable.

1. UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness claims that the books only show 12th grade texts and that UNRWA does not teach 12th grade, UNRWA makes no comment on the 5th grade text quoted in the film, while claiming that UNRWA schools would never promote Jihadiasm, Here is the text from the fifth grade book that was taken from the film:

Palestinian fifth graders are taught this poem entitled: We Shall Return.

"We Shall Return by Harun Hashem Rashid

We shall return
[We] shall return to the homes, to the valleys, to the mountains
Under the flags of glory, Jihad and struggle
With blood, sacrifice [fida' ], fraternity and loyalty"

2. The film clearly shows the portrait of a female suicide bomber on the wall of a school in the UNRWA Deheishe refugee facility near Bethlehem.

3. The suicide bomber is clearly identified as a former UNRWA student. The fact that she is glorfied in her UNRWA "alma mater" is the problem.

David Bedein, Bureau Chief Israel Resource News Agency
http://israelbehindthenews.com/

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HEZBOLLAH AND THE POSSIBILITY OF ANOTHER WAR
Posted by Jewish Policy Center, August 12, 2010.
 

Dr. Josef Olmert is a JPC contributor and Adjunct Professor at American University. He is a well-known Israeli Middle East expert and brother of former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

This was written by Dr. Josef Olmert and it appeared today on the Jewish Policy Center blogsite
http://www.jewishpolicycenter.org/blog/2010/08/ hezbollah-and-the-possibility-of-another-war

 

Abu Ali is a legendary Arab folk hero. He is the one that stands up for the weak and oppressed. Egypt's former leader, Gamal abd al-Nasir, was also an Abu Ali, regardless of his repeated defeats and the calamities that he brought upon the Arabs. Yet this is so in a society that consecrates words at the expense of words, which blame others rather than itself. These days we have a new Abu Ali, in Hezbollah's leader, Hasan Nasrallah.

Following the 2006 summer war between Israel and Hezbollah, in a moment of rare candor Nasrallah admitted that he would not have provoked the conflict had he known it would result in a full scale Israeli invasion. Then, something interesting happened as many commentators from both the U.S. and Israel spread the nonsense that Hezbollah didn't really lose the war. And so a new Abu Ali was born with Nasrallah posing as the victor that he was not.

From the depths of the bunker in Beirut where this new Abu Ali remains in hiding after his celebrated "victory," Nasrallah plots, threatens, and provokes. The truth is, however, that Nasrallah was, is, and will continue to be an agent of the Syrian-Iranian axis. And this is where the story becomes more serious and ominous.

Following the end of the 2006 war, Syria showed signs of a change of heart, as arms smugglings to Hezbollah through its territory appeared to dramatically decrease. Moreover, Syria participated in peace talks with the Olmert government even when Israel allegedly bombed the Syrian nuclear reactor in September 2007. Indeed, the talks continued after Hezbollah's master terrorist, Imad Mughniyeh was assassinated in Damascus.

The reason for this was that contrary to the rhetoric, Asad understood that another conflict in Lebanon instigated by Iran and executed by Hezbollah could have devastating consequences for Syria. Asad also realized that the Bush and Olmert administrations acted in sync, which served to highlight his weakness and the effectiveness Israel's deterrence. Under these circumstances, he chose to stand up to Iran's pressures.

But everything changed following the 2008 presidential elections in the United States. The U.S. and Israel are no longer in sync and American-Syrian diplomatic relations have been developing without any prior conditions. The predictable result is that Bashar al-Asad jumped back into the warm embrace of Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And Syria's new strength through American compromise has guided Lebanon's shaky coalition government back into the Iranian-Syrian axis.

And so, the Middle East's new Abu Ali has returned to the limelight, issuing threats to resume hostilities against Israel that have been readily echoed by his Syrian and Iranian mentors. Yet, this time, something else happened. For the first time in memory, the Lebanese army — under Hezbollah's influence — provoked a clash with the IDF, claiming the life of a senior Israeli officer. Israel's reaction was muted and responsible. But make no mistake: Nasrallah and his mentors have crossed another line.

The U.S. should confront Lebanon with the stark choice between the West or Iran and Syria. The suspension of military aid to Lebanon is a welcome step but more should follow. Any further dialogue between the U.S. and Syria has to make clear that its continuing support for Hezbollah is a possible casus beli for Israel and should war break out, America will stand by Israel without calling for a premature end of hostilities as was the case during the 2006 war and more recent Gaza conflict. For this to happen, the close and strategic cooperation between Israel and the United States must be fully restored. This is a message Bashar al-Asad is very likely to understand.

As for the new Abu Ali, Nasrallah may continue to talk but actions are something else. The bunker where he hides could very well become his tomb in the next conflict, and there is precious little that his mentors will be able to do for him.

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PAKISTAN'S BLASPHEMY LAW AND NON-MUSLIMS
Posted by The Infidel, August 12, 2010.
 

Christian, Jewish, and other non-Muslim religious persecution all over the world is largely ignored by the American press. The cases cited below have caused fresh concerns over Pakistan's controversial blasphemy laws. These laws are intended to provoke haltered and intolerance for all non-Muslims in Pakistan. Several sections of Pakistan's Criminal Code comprise its blasphemy laws. Excerpts from the law:

§ 295 forbids damaging or defiling a place of worship or a sacred object.

§ 295-A forbids outraging religious feelings.

§ 295-B forbids defiling the Quran.

§ 295-C forbids defaming Prophet Mohammed.

Except for § 295-C, the provisions of § 295 require that an offence be a consequence of the accused's intent. Defiling the Quran merits imprisonment for life. Defaming Prophet Mohammed merits death with or without a fine. (See below Sharia.) If a charge is laid under § 295-C, the trial must take place in a Court of Session with a Muslim judge presiding.

§ 298 states:

Whoever, with the deliberate intention of wounding the religious feelings of any person, utters any word or makes any sound in the hearing of that person or makes any gesture in the sight of that person or places any object in the sight of that person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine, or with both.

§ 298-A prohibits the use of any derogatory remark or representation in respect of Muslim holy personages.

§ 298-B and § 298-C prohibit the Ahmadiyya from behaving as Muslims behave, calling themselves Muslims, proselytizing, or "in any manner whatsoever" outraging the religious feelings of Muslims. Violation of any part of § 298 makes the violator liable to imprisonment for up to three years and liable also to a fine.

No judicial execution of a person charged with blasphemy has occurred in Pakistan.Article 45 of the Constitution says, "The President shall have power to grant pardon, reprieve and respite, and to remit, suspend or commute any sentence passed by any court, tribunal or other authority."

One of them, Section 295-C, carries the death penalty.

The story below further emphasizes this State sanctioned prejudice and hatred. The Christians were reporting to court to answer to the charges of blasphemy that were brought against them and never made it into the door.

The following is research published today from MEMRI's Special Dispatch Series, the MEMRI TV Project, and the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor. *Special Dispatch Series

Special Dispatch No. 3159 — Urdu-Pashtu Media Project Human Rights Campaigner I. A. Rehman Examines Pakistan's Controversial Blasphemy Law and Its Misuse Against Christians, Other Minorities

On July 19, 2010, two Christians, pastor Rashid Emmanuel and his brother Sajjad, were shot dead on the premises of a court in Pakistan's Faisalabad city. The two had been accused of distributing blasphemous materials; a case had been filed against them under Section 295-C of the Pakistani Penal Code (PPP) for distributing handwritten pamphlets that contained blasphemous materials.

According to the report, the pamphlets carried two cell phone numbers which led to the brothers' arrest, following a complaint lodged by one Khurram, who is believed to be member of the little known Tehreek-e-Hurmat-e-Rasool (Movement for the Prophet's Dignity).

The entire article by the Human Rights Campaigner can be read at
http://www.memri.org/report/en/0/0/0/0/0/0/4519.htm

As a Christian I have never been able to comprehend the concept of murdering people that do not accept my religion. All humanity was given a free will by our Creator. If God refused to force us to worship Him, how dare mankind make laws and death threats to those that decent from Islam. The nature of the Christian faith often compels its followers to share their faith with love and joy. In Muslim lands it is a life or death situation, most Christians will not make their faith public, knowing it may result in harm. It has also been my experience that in many Muslim dominated lands all over the world, it does not require one to proselytize to be murdered, it only requires that they are non-Muslim and that they BREATH. As I daily think of my Christian brothers and sisters around the world in Muslim lands, I never fail to remember Israel. Israel, an island of Jews, surrounded by a sea of Muslims waiting to engulf her shores on a daily basis.

Contact the Infidel at al_kafir@cox.net

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GABRIEL PITERBERG AND THE SETTLER COLONIALISM FALLACY
Posted by Israel Academia Monitor, August 12, 2010.

This was written by Rachel Avraham, an MA student at Ben-Gurion University and an intern for Israel Academia Monitor.

 

On May 31, 2010, UCLA Professor Gabriel Piterberg gave a lecture entitled "the Literature of Settler Societies: A comparative approach" at Ben-Gurion University's 15th Annual Workshop of the Department of Middle Eastern Studies. In this particular lecture, he claimed that Israel was guilty of settler colonialism and that Israel has a "hegemonic narrative both nationally and internationally." To prove this point, he cited the dislocation of the Palestinian people, claiming that the "dispossession of native peoples is not one of many factors of the native-settler history, but the most fundamentalist constituent of what they actually are." What Piterberg failed to grasp is that settler colonialism is a complicated concept that includes more elements than simply the dislocation of a territories population and if these other elements, such as the existence of an imperial metropole and imperial strategic direction and support, are not included in the equation, something cannot be considered to be settler colonialism. Nevertheless, these facts did not stop Piterberg from arguing that Israel is an example of settler colonialism. .

In the lecture, Piterberg claimed that Zionist literature "consists of cultural imperialism" because it is "predicated on the appearance of the colonized and the subsequent disappearance," which is "something that facilitates colonial sexual moments." For example, "the process of looting Palestinian land after 1948 under the pretense of them being absentees existed for colonial sexual excitement." To illustrate this point further, Piterberg draws on two pieces of literature. One of them is from colonial Algeria and the other one is from Israel. By doing this comparison, he is trying to prove that Israel's situation is comparable to colonial Algeria. To prove the relevance of such an absurd comparison, he claimed that both colonial Algerian and Israeli literature engaged in "domestic Orientalism" by writing about "wild sex with Orientals." In Israeli literature in particular, he cited the existence of "vulgar sex, promiscuity from the women's perspective, hyper-masculinity for Israeli men, white women fantasizing about wild sex with the colonized men, etc." as proof that Israel is indeed a settler colonial society. What Piterberg fails to grasp is that literature is just literature. One cannot use fiction to make a serious allegation such as claiming that Israel looted Palestinian land for sexual excitement or that Israel had a deliberate premeditated policy to expel the Palestinians or that Israel is a settler colonial society.

But despite the fact that the arguments in favor of Israel being a settler colonial society are very weak since the Jews lacked an imperial metropole, did not enjoy imperial strategic direction or support, and a series of other key elements that are crucial for a situation to be labeled to be settler colonialism, this did not stop Piterberg from using the settler colonialism argument in relations to Israel during his interview with the Voices of the Middle East and North Africa on June 9, 2010. In this interview, Piterberg referred to Israel as "an unresolved settler case in the sense that in the other cases the settlers either succeeded in eliminating the natives or were overcome by the natives and eventually left." In the Israel-Palestine case, according to Piterberg, "the settlers have become significantly more powerful than the natives, but have not removed the natives yet don't resign themselves to the existence of the natives and their rights to equality." Thus, "it is this frustration that emanates from incredible asymmetry of power that can't result in the native's removal." Piterberg believes that this is the best explanation for Israel's reaction to the Flotilla as well as other cases of "violence and wanton destruction." By making this argument, Piterberg not only dismisses Jewish claims of indigenousness to the land, but also falsely argues that Israel seeks to expel the Arabs from Greater Israel or at the very least keep the Palestinians in an unequal subservient position. The reality, however, does not support Piterberg. Israeli policy has consistently supported a two-state for two peoples solution that would grant the Palestinians equality, but the Palestinians have consistently rejected this generous Israeli offer because they prefer to be stateless than resign themselves to Israel's existence. It is the Palestinians and their supporters' lack of ability to compromise that has led to cases like the Flotilla as well as other cases of "violence and wanton destruction."

But as if Piterberg's arguments in favor of a connection between Israel and settler colonialism were not problematic enough, he claimed that the Israeli reaction to the Flotilla was based on "absurdities and lies:" that "atrocities were hidden behind a smokescreen that Goebbels would have been proud of." Piterberg neglects to note that the Israeli government's assertions regarding the Flotilla are backed up by video documentation of the operation itself, a statement by Mavi Marmara Ship Captain Gokkiran Gokhan who confirmed that the IHH engaged in premeditated violence, and even statements by various Flotilla participants where they made anti-Semitic comments and said that they aspired to be shahids. But aside from that, any comparison between the Flotilla and the Holocaust is simply ridiculous, since one really cannot compare nine IHH activists' dead after trying to break a blockade and directing violence against IDF soldiers with the murder of six million Jewish men, women, and children for no reason other than the fact that they had Jewish blood.

Nevertheless, the most problematic aspect of the interview was the fact that Piterberg has decided to list a series of false reasons in order to call upon people to support BDS. According to Piterberg, because Israel "has been getting away with murder for too long" and "has paid no price" for her actions, it creates a hindrance to a change in Israeli policy. He claimed that Israel is holding "a million and a half people at ransom for no real reason," that Israel is controlling US policy through its Israel Lobby, that Helen Thomas and other critical reporters have been silenced for "not towing the Zionist line," that the US was ok with Rachel Corrie's "murder" because Israel did it, and Israel is utilizing the "persecution complex" in order to manipulate people into supporting Israel. The fact that Israel's blockade is directly related to a terrorist group taking over Gaza, that the oil lobby in the US is more powerful than the Israel Lobby, that Helen Thomas was fired for making the insensitive anti-Semitic comment that Jews should move back to Germany, that Rachel Corrie was killed by accident because she deliberately decided to halt an IDF operation by standing in the way of a bull-dozer, and that plenty of people would genuinely support Israel because of her merits and genuine sympathy does not seem to occur to Piterberg. Regardless, he uses these faulty reasonings to state that "contemporary Jewish society is becoming increasingly intolerant, fascist, and doesn't take blame or responsibility" and that "change within Israel is like change within South Africa: it will only happen when" Israel starts "paying a price for occupation and violence." Piterberg concludes the interview by referring to the Knesset's reaction to MK Haneen Zoabi as "a fascist reality," despite the fact that the response she got was due to her treacherous actions, and stating that change "depends on the BDS movement getting more momentum" and that he hopes that it is, but states that whether or not it will "remains to be seen." The fact that the situation in Israel is nothing like apartheid in South Africa and that Israel has democratic processes to deal with various grievances does not seem to register with Piterberg.

Contact Israel Academia Monitor by email at e-mail@israel-academia-monitor.com and visit their website:
http://www.Israel-Academia-Monitor.com

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IT'S DEMOGRAPHIC OPTIMISM, STUPID!
Posted by Yoram Ettinger, August 11, 2010.
 

THE BOTTOM LINE

In 2010, a surge in the Israeli Jewish fertility rate is a long-term, unique, global phenomenon, while fertility rates decline sharply in the Third World in general and in Muslim countries in particular. In 2010, there is a 66% Jewish majority in 98.5% of the area between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean (without Gaza) — and a 58% Jewish majority with Gaza. That Jewish majority benefits from a demographic tailwind and from a high potential of Aliya (Jewish immigration) and of returning Israeli expatriates. In comparison, in 1900 and 1947 there was an 8% and a 33% Jewish minority, deprived of economic, technological and military infrastructures. In 2010, the number of Arabs in Judea and Samaria is 900,000 inflated (1.6MN and not 2.5MN) by the inclusion of 400,000 overseas residents, by a double-count of 200,000 Jerusalem Arabs (who are counted as Israeli Arabs by Israel and as West Bank Arabs by the Palestinian Authority), by ignoring annual net-emigration since 1950 (e.g. 17,000 in 2009), etc. A World Bank study documents a 32% "inflation" in the Palestinian birth numbers.

DEMOGRAPHIC FATALISM

Since the appearance of modern day Zionism, the demographic establishment has contended that Jews are doomed to be a minority west of the Jordan River. It asserts that Jews must relinquish geography in order to secure demography. But, what if demographic fatalism is based on dramatically erroneous assumptions and numbers? What if the demographic establishment has adopted Palestinian numbers without auditing, although such numbers are refuted annually by an examination of birth, death, migration and 1st grade registration records? What if the contended Palestinian numbers require a population growth rate almost double the highest population growth rate in the world, while Gaza and Judea and Samaria are ranked 5th and 38th in global population growth rate? What if the demographic establishment failed to realize that the Arab demographic surge of 1949-1969 (in pre-1967 Israel) and 1967-1990 (in Judea and Samaria and Gaza) had to be succeeded by a sharp demographic decline?

2010 DEMOGRAPHIC REALITY

Contrary to demographic projections, the first half of 2010 sustains the growth of the Jewish fertility rate and the sharp and rapid fall of the Arab fertility rate throughout the Moslem World, as well as west of the Jordan River. The decline in the Arab fertility results from accelerated urbanization and modernization processes, such as education, health, employment, family planning, reduced teen pregnancy, enhanced career mentality among women, in addition to domestic security concerns. The Washington-based Population Resource Center reported a sharp dive in global Muslim fertility, trending toward two births per woman. For instance, Iran shrunk from 8 births 30 years ago to 1.7, Egypt — 2.5, North Africa — 1.9, Jordan — a "twin sister" of Judea and Samaria — is below 3 births per woman and Judea and Samaria's fertility rate is 3.2 in 2010. According to demographic precedents, there is a very slight probability of resurrecting high fertility rates following a prolonged period of significant reduction.

In contrast with demographic fatalism, the share of Jewish births in pre-1967 Israel has increased in 2010 — mostly due to the secular sector — to 76% of total births, compared with 75% in 2009 and 69% in 1995. From 80,400 births in 1995 the number of Jewish births catapulted by 50% to 121,000 in 2009, while the annual number of Arab births has stabilized at 39,000 due to their most impressive integration into Israel's infrastructures of modernity. The fertility gap between Arabs (3.5 births per woman and trending downward) and Jews (2.9 and trending upward) was reduced from 6 birth per woman in 1969 to 0.6 in 2009. The erosion in the Arab fertility rate is 20 years faster than projections made by Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics.

ALIYA AND DEMOGRAPHIC OPTIMISM

In 2010, Israel's demographic establishment determined that Aliya sources have been drained. However, during the 1980s, it dismissed any notion of a massive Aliya from the USSR — even if the gates were open — due to cultural, economic and security reasons. But, over one million Olim reached the Jewish State as a result of Prime Minister Shamir's initiatives: limiting Soviet Jews to direct flights from Moscow to Israel only and terminating the issuance — by the USA — of refugee certificates to Soviet Jews. During the 1970s it was suggested that Western Jews can, but don't wish to, emigrate, while Communist Bloc Jews wish to, but cannot, emigrate. But, 300,000 Jews reached Israel due to Prime Minister Golda Meir's initiatives. In 1948, the founders of Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics mocked Ben Gurion's vision of a massive Aliya. But, one million Olim arrived in the Jewish Homeland due to Ben Gurion's initiatives. In 2010, there is a unique potential for another wave of Aliya and returning expatriates, due to the economic meltdown and the rise of anti-Semitism in the former USSR, France, Britain and Argentina, as well as the long-term US economic crisis. Will Jerusalem resurrect drastic Aliya pro-activity? Will Jerusalem realize that Aliya is the raison d'être of the Jewish State and the crux of its national security and economy? Will Jerusalem elevate Aliya to the top of its order of national priorities, thus dramatically bolstering the Jewish majority and uprooting demographic fatalism from the public debate over the territorial boundaries of the Jewish State?

Ambassador Yoram Ettinger is a consultant on US-Israel relations as well as the Chairman of Special Projects at the Ariel Center for Policy Research. Formerly the Minister for Congressional Affairs to Israel's Embassy in Washington, DC, Ettinger also served as Consul General of Israel to the Southwestern US. He is a former editor of Contemporary Mideast Backgrounder, and is the author of the Jerusalem Cloakroom series of reports. Contact him at yoramtex@netvision.net.il

This article is archived at
www.ynetnews.com/articles/ 0,7340,L-3934006,00.html

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NOTHING SHORT OF ENRAGING
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 11, 2010.
 

I've picked up several different versions of this story, some more infuriating than others. But the accurate version is quite enraging enough on its own.

Kuwaiti-born Feisal Abdul Rauf is today an American citizen. He is imam of Masjid al-Farah, a New York City mosque and founder and CEO of the American Society for Muslim Advancement. Perhaps most significantly, he founded the Cordoba Initiative in 2003 and is behind the current plans to erect Cordoba House at Ground Zero. In fact, he wants to be the imam there.

While he claims to be working for Western-Muslim understanding, his views on terrorism generally and 9/11 most specifically are deeply unsettling at best.

A few years ago he called for the US President to give an "American Culpa" speech to the Muslim world, because there is "an endless supply of angry young Muslim rebels prepared to die for their cause and there [is] no sign of the attacks ending unless there [is] a fundamental change in the world." (Can't say if he directly influenced Obama, but it sure sounds like it.)

As to 9/11, he claimed that "United States' policies were an accessory to the crime that happened." (As has been noted: 9/11 "happened.")

~~~~~~~~~~

Additionally, according to the NY Post:

"Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf is a key figure in Malaysian-based Perdana Global Peace Organization, according to its Website.

"Perdana is the single biggest donor ($366,000) so far to the Free Gaza Movement, a key organizer of the six-ship flotilla that tried to break Israel's blockade of the Hamas-run Gaza Strip..."

And that flotilla was connected to the IHH, a Turkish group with terrorist links.
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/ international/imam_unmosqued_ 0XbZMwCvHAVdRZEKgx29AK #ixzz0wKPXU2jS

~~~~~~~~~~

All of this is relevant now because Abdul Rauf is about to take an international trip at the behest of the US State Department. He will be traveling to such Muslim Arab countries as Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Qatar to "foster greater understanding" of Islam and Muslim communities in the US. So says State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley.

Understand, please, this will be government funded, with your money (if you are American) and mine (yes, I still pay US taxes) covering the cost.

Is your blood boiling yet?

~~~~~~~~~~

This is most clearly a White-House inspired venture. Part of the president's nauseatingly inappropriate outreach to the Muslim world.

As JINSA — which summarized the situation with great effectiveness — wrote:

"We know a lot of rabbis, some ministers and a few priests. We would be appalled to have the government of the United States, which by law favors no religion, sending a rabbi to Israel — or the former Soviet Union or France or Argentina, where there are communities of Jews — to talk about how Jews live in the United States. Having a priest travel to the Vatican, Honduras, Ireland or the Philippines to describe the lives of American Catholics would be outrageous. Likewise, ministers to Sweden.

"What business is it of the American government to send a Muslim to Muslim-majority countries to talk about Islam? How offensive is it to think that the American government is using American tax dollars to fly a non-government person around the world to promote the activities and lifestyle of a particular religion."
http://www.jinsa.org/node/1974

~~~~~~~~~~

Some of the stories I encountered said that Abdul Rauf was being sent abroad to fund raise for the mosque at Ground Zero. Technically, however this is not the case.

Said Crowley, when asked about this: "That would not be something he could do as part of our program."

Responded JINSA: "We're so relieved. And we're so sure he will do only as the American government desires."

JINSA goes on to quote Debra Burlingame, a 9/11 family member, who told The NY Post:

"We know he has a fund-raising association with Saudi Arabia [which has underwritten programs by the American Society for Muslim Advancement]. He's going to the well, and how can they say they do or don't know what he's doing?" (emphasis added)

~~~~~~~~~~

A government sanctioned charade is what it is. My guess, actually, would be that his involvement with the proposed mosque at Ground Zero was a factor in Abdul Rauf's selection for this task. He'll be able to tell everyone over in Saudi Arabia how accepting New Yorkers are. (I'll have more on that below.)

~~~~~~~~~~

The question now is what will each of you do about this, besides have your blood pressure checked. This information needs to be put out broadly — share it, post it, write letters to the editor about it, speak on radio talk shows about it.

And then, let your elected officials know how enraged you are. Demand that this be stopped forthwith!

For your Congresspersons:
http://www.house.gov/house/ MemberWWW_by_State.shtml

For your Senators:
http://www.senate.gov/general/ contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

For the president:
Fax: 202-456-2461 White House Comment line: 202-456-1111
e-mail form via:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/

She's not elected, and probably will pay no heed, but contact Sec. of State Clinton as well:

Public Communication Division (accepts opinions from the public):
Phone: 202-647-6575
Fax: 202-647-1579

~~~~~~~~~~

As always: numbers count. Please be polite and succinct, but firm. State your demands clearly.

~~~~~~~~~~

Now, as to New Yorkers and the Ground Zero mosque:

The JPost carries columns by one Ray Hanania, an Arab American who is a stand-up comedian as well as a journalist. I rarely actually agree with him, but he's reasonable. Today's column was interesting. He laments the fact that Arabs and

Muslims do not come to the defense of Jewish people as the Jewish community has spoken on behalf of Muslims. Very nice.

His example of an instance in which Jews have come forward for Muslims is Jewish defense of the Muslim right to build a mosque at Ground Zero. He specifically refers to New York mayor, Michael Bloomberg, "whose eyes welled up with emotion while he declared that Muslims have every right to build a mosque just as Christians and Jews could build a church or synagogue nearby."

Quoting Bloomberg, "Let us not forget that Muslims were among those murdered on 9/11, and that our Muslim neighbors mourned with us as New Yorkers and Americans. We would betray our values and play into our enemies' hands if we were to treat Muslims differently than anyone else. In fact, to cave in to popular sentiment would be to hand a victory to the terrorists — and we should not stand for that."

I think my eyes are about to well up with emotion as I read this — that this man could be so obtusely politically correct and get it so wrong.

Let us not forget that it was neither Christians nor Jews who perpetrated the horror of 9/11, and that Muslims routinely place mosques on sites of historical significance as signs of victory and dominance. That is why there is a mosque today on the Temple Mount. I cannot help but wonder how Bloomberg KNOWS that New York Muslims (as a community) mourned that event. My Muslim neighbors here in eastern Jerusalem danced in the streets in celebration on 9/11; that rather traumatized me. And how does he know they (as a community) identify as Americans, even if they have citizenship, when we have the words of someone like the American born Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the perpetrator of the Fort Hood terrorist attack, who lamented the impossibility of being a good Muslim and an American at the same time.

Naiveté can be sad or even charming, but in an elected official it is frightening.

~~~~~~~~~~

I am not prescient. I simply know my customers and have developed an eye for the MO of Barack Obama. Remember, yesterday, I said that the holds placed on US military assistance to Lebanon may be only temporary, in spite of the appropriate instincts of the Congresspersons involved. Wait, I wrote, the government may yet say that continuing this assistance — in the face of threats by certain members of the Lebanese parliament to go to Iran instead — is in America's interest.

And guess what? Our friend Crowley, speaking for the State Department, has now said that assistance to the Lebanese Armed Forces is "in our national interest and contributes to stability in the region."

Does it really? Giving arms and training to a force that is allied with Hezbollah is a good thing?

Crowley had this answer: "Hezbollah is a fact within Lebanese society and much of our effort in supporting the Lebanese military is in fact the very professionalization that we think helps mitigate that risk."

Huh? What he's trying to say is that making the Lebanese army stronger helps protect it from the influence of Hezbollah.

And I say, more frightening naiveté. It seems to be endemic.

We need to watch this closely.

~~~~~~~~~~

At least the IDF is reconsidering its attitude towards the Lebanese army. Says the JPost:

"The IDF has traditionally viewed the Lebanese army as a relatively neutral force that lacked the hostile intent of Hezbollah. But last week's unprovoked attack on Israeli soldiers...and the Lebanese Army's failure to take action against the officer who ordered the attack, has dramatically altered the IDF's perception of Lebanon's army."

Congresswoman Lowey and her subcommittee are said to be waiting on a Lebanese response before deciding whether the hold should be lifted. I wonder if the refusal of the LAF to discipline the officer who promoted the attack on the IDF will be taken into consideration.

~~~~~~~~~~

One other brief review. Remember how just a few days ago Netanyahu said that he was going to cooperate with the UN inquiry panel on the flotilla incident because it would help smooth our relationship with Turkey. At the time I pondered how he could possibly say this.

We are currently in the midst of our own inquiry by the Turkel Commission, which is separate from the IDF inquiry that was completed recently. (This is obviously such a major incident in the world that it requires all these investigating bodies.) Prime Minister Netanyahu testified before the Turkel Commission. This particular testimony is an internal Israeli affair, understand, but one that made considerable press.

What our prime minister said on Monday was that Turkey did nothing to stop the flotilla, in spite of contacts between Israel and Turkey at "the highest levels."

And already the Turkish foreign minister, Ahmed Davutoglu, has declared that:

"Nobody can place the responsibility of killing civilians in international waters on the other party...First of all [Israel] should bear that responsibility.

"Turkey bears no responsibility in this case and is determined to protect the rights of its own citizens."

Sitting on a UN panel with these guys is going to make things a lot better, I'm sure.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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IS LIFE FOR RUBASHKIN OVERKILL?
Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, August 11, 2010.

This was written by Edwin Black, who is the author of "IBM and the Holocaust" and previously investigated the life sentence given to Jonathan Pollard. Part 1 appeared in Arutz-7 June 10, 2010 and Part 2 June 25, 2010.

 

Part 1:

Originally, some people said they wouldn't mind if kosher butcher Sholom Rubashkin got life in prison and rot behind bars until he dies. Yesterday, June 22, 2010, their wish was fulfilled by U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade in a northern Iowa courtroom. Under the stiff sentence, Rubashkin rots in jail essentially until he dies, a 27 year sentence supplemented by five years of probation to the 51-year man — and then he pays $27 million in restitution. Judge Reade's sentence exceeded even the government's request of 25 years. Now many people are outraged at the harsh treatment being meted out to Rubashkin and ask in disbelief, "What's going on?"

Within hours of the sentencing memorandum, issued a day in advance by Judge Reade, legal scholars expressed shock thousands of Chassidim gathered in vituperative video-streamed protests in New York and Los Angeles, and a cadre of agitated appellate attorneys vowed to overrule the judge's decision.

Who is Sholom Rubashkin and what really happened?

Rubashkin is the man at the center of the torrid scandal swirling around the massively-investigated Agriprocessor's kosher slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa. Last November, a federal jury found Rubashkin guilty of 86 federal charges including bank, mail and wire fraud, and money laundering, as well as failing to pay livestock providers in the 24-hour time period required by law. He was originally facing a tough Department of Justice sentencing prison recommendation that the Probation Department calculated, under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, as life in prison. In the wake of open letters of criticism from legal scholars from Lewinsky prosecutor Ken Starr to Alan Dershowitz, the government recommendation was later amended to just 25 years — still considered by most to be realistically a life sentence.

Those who have always wanted Rubashkin locked away for the rest of his days list his crimes as numerous and odious. Charges by bloggers, Jewish media reporters, and prosecutors include a heinous track record of mistreating illegal alien workers; tolerating drug dealing and gun smuggling in the plant; money laundering; obstruction of justice; perjury; and the painful ritual slaughter of cattle, all in the process of creating arguably the most successful kosher meat business in America.

Those who call for leniency for Rubashkin have plausible answers, explanations, and denials for every accusation. Upon review, many of those accusations are unproven, unprosecuted, and some are merely rumors. His defenders claim he is a charitable man who did not personally benefit financially from his business mistakes. He went awry of the law, they say, for the sake of providing abundantly and readily available kosher beef to the Orthodox. In this, he was successful, serving not just the larger Jewish communities such as those in Brooklyn and Miami, but those located throughout the distant corners of the nation. More importantly, his defenders say, Rubashkin went awry of PETA, the meatpacking unions, overzealous federal prosecutors in Iowa, and certain social dynamics within the Jewish community. His advocates assert that he has been overcharged, over-prosecuted and is now being over-sentenced for some very ordinary transgressions that would land a similar defendant in jail for only a few years. Now, he is facing life imprisonment for financial crimes that have nothing to do with the illegal immigrant worker scandal that made headlines. In many ways, those financial crimes were caused by the government itself, apparently as the sole means by which federal sentencing guidelines could be dynamically goosed up.

It would be impossible to reinvestigate the details of this complex, years-long case. But this much is clear: Rubashkin and Agriprocessors have found themselves on the receiving end of extraordinary enforcement measures and prosecution that for many are hard to fathom.

Some of the details yield a stunning indictment of prosecutorial zeal. His attorney, Nathan Lewin, of the Washington D.C. firm of Lewin & Lewin, argues, "In the almost 50 years that I have been practicing federal criminal law — first as a prosecutor and then as a defense attorney — I have never heard of, or witnessed, as vindictive, excessive, and mean-spirited a criminal prosecution as the one conducted in the Northern District of Iowa against Mr. Rubashkin."

Lewin goes on to accuse Iowa prosecutors of "false representation to the court," in opposing pre-sentencing bail for the Rubashkin last Passover. Specifically, avers Lewin, prosecutors told the judge that after the May 2008 Agriprocessors raid, Rubashkin arranged to send a key employee, Ben Chaim, and his family, to Israel and take over their property in Iowa, this to obstruct justice and make a witness "disappear." Evidence in the record shows that arrangements for Ben Chaim to return to Israel were finalized months before the May 2008 raid, and were, therefore, unconnected to the raid or any potential obstruction. Based on this falsity, Lewin argues, bail was denied to Rubashkin. Lewin called for a Department of Justice Criminal Division investigation of the Iowa prosecutors for misconduct, but ranking members of the Justice Department did not agree.

In an exclusive interview with this reporter, Rubashkin's wife, Leah, says, "My husband definitely made mistakes. He is now paying for those dearly. If the clock were turned back, I'm sure he would not do those mistakes. But his good intentions were never for personal gain, only done with the feeling they would help the business [Agriprocessors] survive" and in so doing help fulfill a religious mandate to provide kosher beef to the Orthodox community.

Ironically, Rubashkin was not tried for hiring or mistreating illegal aliens. Instead, he was charged with financial crimes, including violating the obscure 1921 Packers and Stockyards Act, section 409 of which requires payment to cattle suppliers within 24 hours. In many cases, Rubashkin paid his vendors several days late — a common occurrence in today's economy. Yet in a detailed sentencing memorandum, the prosecution points to 31 cattle suppliers who were not paid within 24 hours — but all were indeed paid. Specifically, on page 25 of the sentencing memo, prosecutors assert, "The actual loss to each Packer's Act victim is attributable to the fact that they all lost the time value of their money while they were waiting for payment." As an example, the government sentencing memo declares, "Waverly Sales, Inc. has quantified the amount of their actual loss to be $3,800.51. This is based upon the amount of interest Waverly paid on a mortgage loan it took out on its property in order to cover the cost of the cattle sold to Agriprocessors while it was waiting for payment through the Packer's trust." As such, Rubashkin is to get a life sentence in part because his supplier lost interest waiting for full payment, which was actually made, but made days late. Indeed, this is the first criminal prosecution under the 90-year-old Packers and Stockyards Act any legal expert contacted could remember.

In a written explanation, assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Deegan, Jr. defended, "The fact that they [cattle suppliers] were ultimately paid is completely beside the point when the essence of the criminal offense is the failure to timely pay providers of livestock." The emphasis on the word "timely" is Deegan's.

Prosecutors also discovered that Rubashkin inflated his original receivables to secure a bank loan; even though no losses were incurred, the exaggeration constituted federal bank fraud. Moreover, when Rubashkin routinely checked off a boilerplate box on the original application, he swore his firm was not involved in illegal activities. That statement was deemed false by virtue of the illegal aliens who were discovered working at the plant. The government has claimed that the bank lost $26 million when Agriprocessors defaulted on its loan. Such a high loss forces the federal sentencing guidelines up. The more money lost in a fraud, the more years the guidelines suggest. But further inquiry shows that the bank in question actually made $21 million in interest from Rubashkin's loan since he paid down his $35 million line of credit — on time, every time, for years.

Agriprocessors, says Lewin, only went bankrupt after the government's massive raid, compounded by threats to prosecute prospective purchasers if they employed family members who offered to continue running the business, and an original indictment on 3 counts that was amended by six major superseding indictments. New indictments were filed every few weeks for about seven months until the seventh indictment recorded a staggering 163 counts. When the thriving business with a built-in captive kosher market was forced into bankruptcy, all sorts of viable multi-million-dollar purchase offers were rejected by the bank until the business failed completely. At that point, the bank indeed lost $26 million in what Lewin and other defenders see as an artificial, self-created loss that served to intensely escalate the sentencing guidelines.

Undocumented aliens are an untidy fact in American manufacturing, but prosecutions for similar illegal worker raids have garnered sentences of only a few years for their executives. For example, in 2007, the Michael Bianco Company, a New Bedford, Massachusetts leather goods manufacturer, was raided. Some 326 illegal workers were discovered. Owner Francesco Insolia, found guilty of deplorable working conditions, received, in January 2009, a sentence of a year and one day plus stiff fines.

About a month after the May 2008 Agriprocessors raid, a Houston rag exporter called Action Rags USA was raided, resulting in the arrest of 150 immigrants. Owner Mubarik Kahlon was sentenced to two years' probation and a $6,000 fine. The list of comparably light sentence cases goes on virtually without variation.

With such light-sentence precedents, prosecutors chose not to proceed on immigration violations but instead went after Rubashkin's paperwork violations of a bank loan which had previously been paid on time and in full. But even financial crime sentencing — excepting those of the Bernard Madoff class — has been shorter than Rubashkin's. His sentence exceeds that of Jeffrey K. Skilling, the former chief executive of Enron convicted of some $80 million in losses and massive economic fallout to the city of Houston; Skilling received 24 years. L. Dennis Kozlowski, the former chief executive of Tyco convicted of a $150 million fraud, received a state court sentence of to 8 1/3 to 25 years. Indeed, Mark Turkcan, the president of First Bank Mortgage of St. Louis — the bank Rubashkin is charged with defrauding — himself plead guilty to misapplying $35 million in loans, resulting in a loss of approximately $25 million during a years-long fraud and cover-up; Turkcan was sentenced last year by a federal judge in Missouri to one year and one day in prison.

During the years of the Rubashkin prosecution, it seems many in the Jewish community have maintained a stance either of silence or stern condemnation. That very quiet abandonment may have tacitly greenlighted prosecutors that co-religionists would not speak up in face of excessive action. Here there are many subtle Jewish community undercurrents at play, some critics and defenders assert. Rubashkin is a Lubavitch Chassidic Jew, and a leading member of Chabad. Some Jews reportedly revile the group because some Chabad followers hail their deceased spiritual leader, Menachem Schneerson, as the "Jewish Messiah," said a well-known Jewish activist in New York who asked not to be quoted by name.

Pinchos Lipschutz, publisher of the Orthodox Jewish publication Yated Ne'eman, known in the past for its disagreement with Chabad, has aggressively defended Rubashkin. He added, "Some liberal secular Jews look at the Orthodox like they are dirty. I think this was the secular Jews against the religious. Killing is never pretty and a slaughterhouse is not a pretty site." Religious media did point out the inequities, but Lipschutz adds, "No one takes the religious Jewish media seriously. Our papers are not picked up like the secular Jewish media." Lipschutz was referring to mainstream secular Jewish newspapers that have aggressively covered the Agriprocessors scandal and editorialized against Rubashkin, garnering most of the wider media attention.

Attorney Lewin has publically pointed his finger at an exhaustive series of investigative reports and highly critical articles on Agriprocessors that ran in The Forward, a prominent Jewish weekly. Prosecutors cited articles in the Forward, says Lewin, who once advised Rubashkin to sue the paper for libel. Lewin says that doing nothing only emboldened The Forward to ratchet up what he called "venomous attacks" against Rubashkin. These had an impact, Lewin argues.

In spite of appearances that Rubashkin has been abandoned, large numbers of Jewish organizations and individuals have written recently to the Justice Department, created "Justice for Rubashkin" Facebook pages, recorded online support videos, and signed petitions seeking sentencing moderation. These include the Simon Wiesenthal Institute, Pesach Lerner and Young Israel, as well as scores of individuals. Indeed, according to Lipschutz, who heads up a legal defense fund, "We get checks every day — hundreds of checks. So far, we have raised more than $400,000. Just last week, I received a check for $7,283.76 from a man who said 'please don't give anyone my name.'"

Virtually all of the petitioners make clear that they do not excuse any wrong-doing or criminal action. Many of the letters express a sentiment similar to Simon Wiesenthal Institute's April 14, 2010 letter to the Department of Justice. Decrying "a grotesque and inordinate life sentence," the Simon Wiesenthal Institute asked for "a fair and equitable sentence." But what should that have been?

Rubashkin's attorneys have asked for no more than six years. Former federal judge Paul Cassell called the government's sentencing demand "irrational and unjust." Cassell, who wrote a 70-page opinion on another inordinate sentence stated, "The six-year number is in the ballpark. Life is what you get for first degree murder. This is a longer sentence than for second degree murder or rape of child."

Perhaps no critic of Rubashkin has been more vituperative than Scott Rosenberg, a former Chabad Jew in Minneapolis, who operates the blog known as FailedMessiah.com. This blog has covered every development in the case in depth, and is credited by some with "keeping the case alive." Rosenberg is a former family friend of the Rubashkins who several times ate at their dinner table on Sabbath. Rosenberg called Rubashkin a "sociopath," yet added, "I don't hate him, I actually like him. I don't want his wife and kids to suffer for 20 years, God forbid, while he sits in jail. But how to protect society?" Asked months ago what sentence he himself would assess if it were in his power, Rosenberg replied, "If I had the power, from my heart I would sentence him to 3 years at a medical facility and a long term of close supervision after that. From my head, I would say fifteen years."

Leah Rubashkin said she has spoken to her husband and if he received a single digit sentence, upon release he would not return to the business world but to community outreach, and tending to his ten children, one of which is autistic.

Once the judge's June 21 sentencing memo was released, defense team conference calls began flying. Republican former conservative-minded U.S. Attorney Bob Barr, appointed by President Ronald Reagan, caught in an Atlanta airport when the sentence was learned, bristled that Reade's decision yielded the most excessive sentence he has seen in his entire legal career. Similar remarks have been consistently voiced by a range of former prosecutors, from Bill Clinton-era Attorney General Janet Reno to Clinton's chief nemesis special prosecutor Ken Starr. Indeed, six former Attorney General representing the spectrum of political and sentencing philosophies have signed public letters rejecting the harsh sentence the government proposed and which was exceeded by the ultimate terms the judge handed down.

Even arch-critic Scott Rosenberg of failedmessiah.com thought a lighter sentence should have been meted out. "Judge Reade followed the federal sentencing guidelines," stated Rosenberg in an email to this reporter. "The problem with the length of Rubashkin's sentence lies with those guidelines — and with the multitude of crimes Rubashkin committed and his refusal to demonstrate remorse or make restitution. That said, I wish Judge Reade had departed from those sentencing guidelines, and given Sholom a lighter sentence."

Ironically, the judge's sentencing memorandum went so far as to warn Rubashkin not to appeal. Indeed, she included the remarkable statement that if she did make an appealable and reversible error, on re-sentencing she will only increase the punishment. On page 46 she writes, "Although an upward departure would be permitted under USSG §5K2.0(a)(3) and § 5K2.21, the court declines to depart upward ... [I]n the event the court is required to re-sentence Defendant, it reserves the right to revisit these upward departure provisions to determine whether their application would be appropriate." She expands the threat on page 50, writing, "Were the court to vary, the court would vary upward to take into account additional criminal conduct involving harboring of illegal aliens, which was charged in over seventy counts of the Seventh Superseding Indictment and were later dismissed." She adds, "The court notes that, even if it inadvertently erred in computing the advisory Guidelines sentence, it would still impose a sentence of 324 months of imprisonment after considering the factors in § 3553(a)."

U.S. Attorney Stephanie Rose, whose office prosecuted the case, was asked a series of questions about the judge's sentence and issued this reporter the following answers.

First: Did the massive media and letter writing campaign, play a role in the sentence? Rose's office answered, speaking only for the prosecution, "As far as the actions of the government... it had no effect. We have always based our actions solely on the facts and on the law."

Second: Judge Reade sentenced Rubashkin to a term exceeding the government request. Why?" Rose's office would only say, "The judge looked at the facts and circumstances and it was her judgment call on what the appropriate sentence was. That is the job of judges."

Third: Was the severity of the sentence in keeping with others convicted of financial crimes, including the year and a day issued to the president of the very bank Rubashkin was convicted of defrauding?" Rose's office replied, "Any comment on that fraud [First Bank Mortgage of St. Louis] is meaningless without knowing all the facts. [These comments] don't take into account in other white collar cases such as Bernie Madoff who received 150 years. And a fifty year term for Tom Petters (convicted of a multi-billion dollar Ponzi scheme), a 100-year sentence for Edward Okun (issued last year on a $126 million tax scheme)." Rose's office added, "Sentences of more than 25 years were also issued for two executives National Century Financial Enterprises."

Fourth: Was justice served by Judge Reade's sentence? Rose office would only respond, "It is not our call as to whether the sentence is appropriate or not. Justice was served by the prosecution and the court having the opportunity to look at all the facts and circumstances in arriving at sentence."

Attorney Lewin promised that Rubashkin would ultimately get a fair hearing, but not until his case was appealed to the Eighth Circuit Court. At press time, that appeal is being typed.

Part 2:

The disputed case of Reb Sholom Rubashkin deserves more facts, more explanation of a complicated case. Edwin Black gives us a great deal of that. No doubt, more will be revealed.

Did the government plan the raid against Agriprocessor's because the Meatpacker's Union wanted to unionize the company against the workers' wishes?

Did the PETA folks influence an anti-Semitic tilt to the humane nature of the Kashrut standards for slaughter?

Rubashkin was acquitted of the multiple charges of violating child labor laws and the charges of hiring illegal aliens were dropped.

The only charges left standing were that Rubashkin was late in paying those who provided his cattle — but — he paid them all — (maybe several days late) until the May 2008 raid that put the company into bankruptcy.

There is more, much more. Evidence emerging speaks of a Judge who plotted with the Justice Department and the FBI to entrap Rubashkin, not as much as a criminal but, as a Jew. The Judge, U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade, northern Iowa, should be charged, investigated, tried and impeached. Those who plotted with her or who knew about her manipulations should be fired at least.

Most Washington insiders know that this on-going crusade (including by the 16 American Intel Agencies) against Jews is intended to close down any Jewish lobbying or Congress on life-and-death matters dealing with Israel, Muslim Arabs, Palestinians and Iran.

Attacking Jewish Law, such as Kosher laws and distributors, Jewish organizations and/or individual Jews (like Jonathan Pollard) is too well known in Washington. Their cumulative purpose seems to be to twist Israel's arms to accept the Obama Administration's "outreach" to Muslim countries and organizations.

There are 57 Islamic countries in the world, of which 22 are Arab. This includes but is not limited to Iran, Syria, Hezb'Allah, Hamas and Muslims generally — approximately 1.57 Billion Muslims worldwide, 23% of the world's population.

When America's Judiciary, courts and Judges, the Justice Department, Homeland Security and the FBI/CIA become an extension of the Obama political regime and policy toward Islam, a religion that is hostile to everything America and the Free West believes in, then we, as nations and peoples are in very bad trouble.

Emanuel Winston is a commentator and Middle East analyst. His articles appear often on Think-Israel and Gamla. He is a member of the Board of Directors and a research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies (http://www.freeman.org/online.htm). Contact him at gwinston@gwinstonglobal.org

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AN ANTI-SEMITE NAMED TONY JUDY
Posted by Steve Plaut, August 11, 2010.
 

There is one less Jewish anti-Semite roaming about. Tony Judt, a malicious Jewish anti-Semite, best known for his calls for Israel to be annihilated, was recalled by his Creator last Friday. Since the mainstream press is trying to make Judt out as some sort of heroic moral hero and deep intellectual, we though the time was proper to re-post this:

http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/ individualProfile.asp?indid=1335
* Historian and professor at New York University
* Has called for Israel's dissolution

Born to a Jewish family in London in 1948, Tony Judt is a professor of history at New York University. His parents were refugees from anti-Semitic persecution in Eastern Europe. Raised in London, Judt lived briefly on a kibbutz in Israel in the 1960s. At that point in his life, he was quite fond of the Jewish state. But he later made a political U-turn; he is currently known for his belief that Israel has no legitimate right to exist.

Judt has done some notable academic work during his professional career. He considers himself an expert in French history and has published widely on this subject to general acclaim, although some French thinkers have challenged his credentials.

But in recent years Judt has made a transition away from intellectual history, to an overriding concern with the Middle East conflict. A devotee of Edward Said, the late professor of English Literature at Columbia University, Judt wrote the introduction to a collection of Said's essays. The following lengthy sentence summarizes the tone and viewpoint of Judt's approach to Israel and its quest for survival:

"Today [Israel] presents a ghastly image: a place where sneering 18-year-olds with M-16s taunt helpless old men ('security measures'); where bulldozers regularly flatten whole apartment blocks ('rooting out terrorists'); where helicopters fire rockets into residential streets ('targeted killings'); where subsidized settlers frolic in grass-fringed swimming pools, oblivious of Arab children a few meters away who fester and rot in the worst slums on the planet."

As regards the Mideast conflict, Judt's writing consists primarily in condemning Israel for allegedly conducting an "ethnic cleansing" of Palestinians in 1948. He also believes that the current strife could best be resolved through the abandonment of Israel by the United States, a nation which he holds guilty of having suppressed its own liberals and leftists.

Judt was one of those who rallied in support of holocaust denier Norman Finkelstein, when the latter was dismissed from DePaul University due to his lack of any serious scholarly work. Judt insisted that Finkelstein was a martyr who had been victimized by an allegedly omnipotent Jewish-Israel Lobby.

In a superb expose of Judt, Benjamin Balint, a Fellow at Hudson Institute, argues that the professor's hatred of Israel, however freighted with postmodern attitudinizing, often resembles and imitates traditional anti-Semitism.

Judt's insistence on the Jewish state's "anachronism" edges toward a secular version of Christian supersessionism. Where once Christians wanted Jews to acknowledge the obsolescence of Judaism, Judt wants them to recognize the obsolescence of the Jewish state ("an oddity among modern nations"). Where Christianity considered the Jewish faith refuted by theological history, Judt deems the Jewish state revoked by political history. Where once Christians accused Jews of stubbornly refusing the inexorable advance of religion toward messianic fulfillment, Judt charges Israel with declining to yield to the inexorable progress of History toward enlightened universalism.

Judt contends that he hates Israel because it is founded on nationalism, an impulse he deems both dangerous and outdated. Even though every other state on the planet is also founded on nationalism, Judt believes that only Israel should cease to exist.

One of Judt's most notorious writings against Israel appeared in the New York Review of Books, a publication to which he frequently contributes, on October 23, 2003. There he basically insisted that Israel alone was responsible for all continuing tensions in the Middle East and for the failure to achieve peace with its Arab neighbors. The entire article was a call for Israel's dismemberment and replacement by a single state with an Arab majority, commonly known as the "One-State Solution." The article, which David Frum called "genocidal liberalism," triggered more than a thousand letters, most attacking Judt. As a result of the piece, The New Republic, on whose board Judt had previously sat, expelled him from the magazine.

In that same article, Judt characterized Israel as a country of fascists:

"When one hears Israel's deputy prime minister, Ehud Olmert, proudly insist that his country has not excluded the option of assassinating the elected president of the Palestinian Authority, it is clear that the label fits better than ever. Political murder is what fascists do."

Judt excused suicide-bombing mass murders against Jews because "the Palestinians have no other weapons." He likened Israel's security fence, designed to keep Palestinian suicide bombers away from Jewish school buses and shopping malls, to the Berlin Wall. And he challenged the foundational legitimacy of Israel:

"The very idea of a Jewish state — a state in which Jews and the Jewish religion have exclusive privileges from which non-Jewish citizens are forever excluded — is rooted in another time and place. Israel, in short, is an anachronism."

Judt then asserted that the supposedly powerful Israel Lobby prevents the expression of legitimate criticism of Israel:

"It has also corroded American domestic debate. Rather than think straight about the Middle East, American politicians and pundits slander our European allies when they dissent, speak glibly and irresponsibly of resurgent anti-Semitism when Israel is criticized, and censoriously rebuke any public figure at home who tries to break from the consensus."

Judt returned to this theme in the July 14, 2005 edition of the New York Review of Books, where he wrote that "Israel and its lobbyists have an excessive and disastrous influence on the policies of the world's superpower."

Writing in The Nation (January 3, 2005), Judt insisted that Israel's inherent evil is the chief cause of attacks on blameless Jews outside Israel:

"It is the policies of Israeli governments, especially in the past two decades, that have provoked widespread anti-Jewish feelings in Europe and elsewhere ... They can hardly be surprised when their own behavior provokes a backlash against ... Jews."

Judt also maintains that all of Europe's problems with Muslim immigrants are due to Israel's misbehavior. As Manhattan Institute scholar Sol Stern observes, "Judt's free pass for Islam is the other side of the coin of his recent obsession with the sins of Israel and Zionism, areas which make the personal oh so political for Judt."

Judt endorses Fatah ideologue and Palestinian Authority official Othman Abu Gharbiya's November 1999 assertion that:

"Every Palestinian must clearly understand that the independent Palestinian state, with Jerusalem as its capital, is not the end of the process but rather a stage on the road to a democratic state in the whole of Palestine. This will be followed by a third phase, namely Palestine's complete amalgamation in the Arab and Islamic cultural, national, historic, and geographic environment. This is the permanent-status solution."

Judt understands that achieving such a result will require some extreme measures. Paul Berman, writing in Forward, observes:

"[Judt] ends up commenting, 'terror against civilians is the weapon of choice of the weak.' Presumably he means that the Palestinian bombers are [politically] weak and have had no alternative way to claim their national rights — though he doesn't explain why the 'weak' would have turned to their 'weapon of choice' precisely in the aftermath of former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's offer to create the Palestinian state in Gaza and on almost all of the West Bank."

Among those who have rebuked Judt for his bias against Israel and Jews was The New Republic. Writing there on October 27, 2003, Leon Wieseltier mocks Judt and his bitter chagrin at the way his own Jewish heritage makes him (in Judt's view) necessarily complicit in what he regards as immoral acts:

"Consider his [Judt's] predicament again. He finds himself 'implicitly identified' with Israel's actions in, say, Jenin. But he was nowhere near Jenin. He killed nobody. Indeed, he is ferociously opposed to the killings, and to the policies of the Sharon government in the territories generally. All he has to do, then, is to say so, and then to express his anger at the suggestion that he is in any way responsible for what he, too, deplores. For the notion that all Jews are responsible for whatever any Jews do, that every deed that a Jew does is a Jewish deed, is not a Zionist notion. It is an anti-Semitic notion."

Since 2006, Judt has spent much of his time peddling and marketing the anti-Israel book by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt entitled The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. Its demonization of a Jewish cabal that purportedly controls American foreign policy and stifles freedom of speech has brought a cascade of criticism, causing Judt to fret that his heroic stand against Israel has made him, too, a victim of Zionist "censorship" and suppression. His basis for this perception is that in 2006 the Polish Consulate in New York had been planning to invite him to give a talk, but when it learned about how hostile Judt was to Jews and Israel — partly as a result of some petitions signed by academics and others — the invitation was cancelled.

In response to that cancellation, Judt declared:

"This is serious and frightening, and only in America — not in Israel — is this a problem. These are Jewish organizations that believe they should keep people who disagree with them on the Middle East away from anyone else who might listen."

This profile is adapted from the article "Collaborators In the War against the Jews: Tony Judt," authored by Steven Plaut and published by FrontPageMag.com on September 9, 2009.

Steven Plaut is an American-trained economist, a professor of business administration at Haifa University and author of "The Scout." He frequently comments — both seriously and satirically — on Israeli politics and the left wing academic community. Write him at stevenplaut@gmail.com His website address is
http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com.

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MANHATTAN MOSQUE: MORE
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 11, 2010.
 

MANHATTAN MOSQUE: MORE

In discussing preparations for the Manhattan mosque complex proposed near Ground Zero, the New York Times brought out a seeming detail that contradicts the impression of radicalism that some of Imam Rauf's statements and stands give. The fact is that the mosque he preached, Masjid al-Farah, 12 blocks from the World Trade Center, is in the Sufi tradition. Sufis emphasize tolerance (Ann Barnard, 8/11/10, A1).

Is there a misunderstanding here? Is it possible that people of different cultures do not understand each other when both use English? Asked to denounce terrorist organizations, Rauf refused to. As one could ask of President Obama, how can one fight extremist ideology if one will not identify and denounce it?

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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RUBASHKIN'S APPEAL AND CORRUPTION IN THE COURTS
Posted by Aryeh Zelasko, August 11, 2010.

This was written by William L. Anderson and appeared yesterday on Matzav.com. It is archived at
http://matzav.com/rubashkins-appeal-and-corruption- in-the-courts

 

As one who often writes about courts and prosecutorial misconduct, I must admit to having no confidence anymore in American judges having any integrity at all. One of the defining moments for me came in the Tonya Craft case in North Georgia when the judge, Brian House, literally took cues from the prosecutors during the trial, as they gave him hand signals and other indications of what he needed to do in certain situations.It should surprise no one that House desperately tried to rig a conviction, and when he received the "not guilty" verdict from jurors and read it before the verdict was read to the people in the courtroom, his face turned ashen and his expression was one of utter shock. However dishonest and sordid his actions, at least House was unable to get the jurors to vote his way; Shalom Rubashkin was not so fortunate, as his judge not only was hostile to him throughout the trial, but now we find that the judge played an important role in the prosecution of the case.

In my first article on Rubashkin's conviction, I dealt with the charges and the sentence that Judge Linda Reade imposed on him — 27 years, which is longer than many murderers receive — and was entirely out-of-kilter with what the law is supposed to do. Readers know that I have trouble with how federal criminal law is imposed and how prosecutors can take about any action, including a legal action, and roll it into the "fraud" statutes that enable prosecutors to make their careers.

However, new documents released now demonstrate that Reade was far more involved in this case than I could have imagine, and that there is no way humanly possible for her to have done what supposedly is her job: be an impartial jurist:

A federal judge conspired with the Bush Department of Justice to plan the largest immigration raid ever in the United States, and then presided over the trial of the plant's manager, eventually sentencing him beyond even prosecutors' recommendation.

New documents show Linda Reade, the chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa, was involved in the planning of the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement raid on the Agriprocessors kosher meatpacking plant at least six months before it occurred in May 2008. She asked for briefings from law enforcement and went as far as to ensure the raid was conducted around her vacation schedule.

But the judge never said a word of this to the defense lawyers for Sholom Rubashkin, the Agriprocessors manager, when she presided over his trial on bank fraud. She didn't recuse herself from the case, either.

Indeed, all through the proceedings leading up to the trial, and then during the trial itself, it was clear that Reade has utterly hostile to the defendant. Furthermore, the very notion that she played what effectively was a "law enforcement" and prosecutorial role even before Rubashkin's kosher meat processing plant was raided automatically should have disqualified her. Furthermore, by stepping outside of her role as a judge, she opens herself to lawsuits, as she has absolute immunity only in her role as a judge, not as a law enforcement officer.

The media and the courts have framed this as a "financial fraud" case, as though Rubashkin was the Second Coming of Bernie Madoff. However, the "financial fraud" that Rubashkin committed was not "fraud" at all in the historical sense. This is what I described in my previous article:

In the case of Agriprocessors, the loan was a revolving $35 million payout that enabled the company to keep a steady cash flow, meet payroll, and pay its bills. The firm was not arrears in payment, and all indications were that the company would be able to meet its obligations to the bank.

Because the federal courts have eviscerated the ancient doctrine of mens rea, which means that prosecutors needed to prove that a person charged intended to commit a crime, intent to defraud no longer matters. In fact, one can argue that Agriprocessors did not "defraud" First Bank at all, and there are indications that the bank knew that Agriprocessors was overstating its revenues and underestimating its costs (something the federal government does every year, but never results in anyone's arrest), but did not care because its good customer paid its bills on time. The company was profitable, and so was the bank.

That was not all, according to the feds. Apparently, certain suppliers of cattle and other things are required by a little-known (and almost never enforced) law from the 1920s to be paid within 24 hours. No one had complained about the late payments, to my knowledge; instead, it was yet another of those "legal technicalities" that federal prosecutors use when they want to convict someone on something.

Now, the bank would not have called the loan and lost all those millions had the federal government not shut down Agriprocessors. However, the government is claiming that the business itself was a $35 million fraud, as though Rubashkin were running a Ponzi scheme. (Oh, sorry, only the government is permitted to run a Ponzi program that we know as Social Security.)

Thus, the real cause of the losses was not the business practices of Rubashkin per se, but rather the way that the federal government dealt with the situation. The Bush administration wanted to make a statement to its conservative base regarding illegal immigrants being employed in the United States and it chose to make an example of Rubashkin and Agriprocessors.

Keep in mind that the feds can do the same to any business, even those businesses that absolutely operate above board in every way. Federal agents can act on false allegations (which they do all the time), raid the place, shut it down, and then claim that the entire operation was fraudulent after the company cannot pay its bills, and don't think they don't do this.

Federal agents have absolutely no personal stake in the success of a business or even private enterprise in general. They are in privileged positions and can extract whatever they want from people who are not so well-placed, and they do it on a regular basis. That means that if they drive legitimate businesses into bankruptcy, that is no problem to them, and if other lives are ruined and the economy sinks a little bit lower, who cares? The prosecutors and judges get their paychecks.

If anything, the revelations that Reade was involved up to her eyeballs in the Rubashkin case from the very beginning sets a new low in federal criminal law — if it is impossible for these people to sink any lower. It absolutely is clear that from the start, Reade was trying to engineer an arrest and conviction, and if she had an ounce of integrity (honest federal official, of course, is an oxymoron), she would resign immediately.

However, I am sure that Reade will go on as though nothing happened. One hopes that the appellate courts will note the misconduct, but I will not be holding my breath.

Aryeh Zelasko lives in Beitar Illit, south of Jerusalem. He is Director of Sales and Marketing of Israel Visit (www.israelvisit.co.il) which provides information and an internet buying facility for American visitors to Israel.

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SPEAKING OF GUSH KATIF, GAZA — I TOLD YOU SO
Posted by Truth Provider, August 11, 2010.

Dear friends,

How many times need I repeat the 'I told you so' sentence?

The trick is to say 'I told you so' before the event, not after it. This is what you got from me five years ago BEFORE Israel got out of Gaza.

We are now five years after this most horrendous event in Israel's history (Jewish history, world history). Five years since the destruction of all Gush Katif's thriving Jewish communities, and the eviction of 10,000 Jews, including their exhumed dead, at the hands of their own brethren.

Now, some of left media who were blind enough to support the crime, is beginning to wake up, including the LA Times (see below). The NY Times last week published a long overdue article by Efraim Karsh:
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/02/opinion/02karsh.html ?_r=1&scp=1&sq=efraim%20karsh&st=cse

Not everyone admits the mistake. Some continue to push Israel to commit suicide by evacuating Judea & Samaria. So, let me say it here before it happens: If Israel is forced to vacate Judea & Samaria, the 'I told you so' will be uttered on the smoldering ruins of Israel.

One of the biggest remaining idiots is Thomas Friedman. No, I am not trying to sugar coat my expletive. According to this idiot, Israelis are stupid and naive. If you tell them nicely that you understand them, they will gladly commit suicide.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/08/opinion/ 08friedman.html?ref=thomaslfriedman

Here, see for yourself:

"Constructive criticism starts by making clear: "I know what world you are living in." I know the Middle East is a place where Sunnis massacre Shiites in Iraq, Iran kills its own voters, Syria allegedly kills the prime minister next door, Turkey hammers the Kurds, and Hamas engages in indiscriminate shelling and refuses to recognize Israel. I know all of that. But Israel's behavior, at times, only makes matters worse — for Palestinians and Israelis. If you convey to Israelis that you understand the world they're living in, and then criticize, they'll listen." T.Friedman.

If you can find a better expletive to describe this imbecile, please let me know.

Your Truth Provider,
Yuval

The article below is entitled "LA Times Concludes Withdrawal From Gaza Was not Smart" and appeared in Arutz-Sheva yesterday. It was written by Hillel Fendel, Senior News Analyst of Arutz-Sheva
(http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/139041).

 

(Israelnationalnews.com) Five years after, a major U.S. newspaper summarizes Israel's Disengagement from Gaza: "It was a big mistake." Entitled "Lessons and Legacies of Israel's Gaza Withdrawal," the August 8th Los Angeles Times piece by Edmund Sanders lists a series of conclusions that can be drawn from the abrupt, unilateral pullout from Gush Katif in Gaza orchestrated by then-Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in the summer of 2005. Just five months later, Sharon suffered massive hemorrhaging and entered the comatose state from which he has not awoken.

Among the key lessons and legacies listed by the LA Times are these:

Although disengagement enjoyed broad support at the time, almost no one calls it a success today... It helped put Hamas in power... Security for Israelis didn't improve — and even worsened... It contributed to increased isolation for Israel internationally... It raised doubts as to whether the Palestinians are actually ready for statehood... Though the actual expulsion went more easily than expected, it made Israelis more cynical about the chances for future land-for-peace deals.

In this last connection, the Times article does not note the ongoing difficulties in resettling the 9,000 expelled Jewish citizens. It states: "Gaza was a key test of whether an Israeli government would pay the political price needed to remove 9,000 settlers. Dire predictions that such moves would tear the nation apart turned out to be exaggerated."

This, however, is an under-estimate of the terrific damage domestic damaged that was caused, both in terms of solidarity felt by a significant political sector with the government and the suffering caused to the uprooted settlers themselves.

In addition, Sanders does not note that a government commission assigned to investigate its handling of the expelled citizens found that the government had utterly failed in this regard.

In any event, "only 35 percent [of Israelis] envision evacuations [in some/all Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria]," Sanders concludes, compared with 58 percent in 2005.

Supportive Wind for Terrorism

Sanders confirms that the anti-Disengagement camp's warning that the withdrawal would provide a supportive back-wind for terrorism came true. "Hamas got to crow that its policy of armed resistance and attacks on Israeli civilians had led to the withdrawal," he writes. "Immediately after the pullout, 84 percent of Palestinians viewed the disengagement as a 'victory' for armed resistance... Perceptions of a Hamas triumph over Israel and frustration over Fatah's alleged corruption propelled Hamas — which in 2004 was polling at just 20 percent — to victory in several local elections a few months after the withdrawal. In 2006, Hamas won parliamentary polls; a year later, it seized control of Gaza by force, creating the current Fatah-Hamas rift."

Regarding Sharon's false prediction that quitting Gaza was likely to save Israeli lives, Sanders writes that Israel actually "traded a low-intensity quagmire for what Prime Minister Netanyahu today calls an 'Iranian port' south of Tel Aviv, referring to Iranian support for Hamas and other extremist groups in Gaza. Despite Israel's attempts to seal off borders, seaports and airspace, longer-range rockets were developed, and soon thousands were being launched at southern Israeli cities."

"In the two years before disengagement," Sanders writes, "seven Israelis were killed by rocket and mortar attacks from Gaza. Since the pullout, 28 have been killed, according to the Sderot Media Center."

Yuval Zaliouk writes the Truth Provider columns. To subscribe, send an email to ynz@netvision.net.il

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MÉDECINS SANS FRONTIÈRES (DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS) — A PREJUDICED BUNCH
Posted by Albert Wendroff, August 10, 2010.

If you think Médecins Sans Frontières are doing a wonderful job, please read this.

 

The Chief Operational Officer
Médecins Sans Frontières
Sent to the Australian Office and New York Office
Subject: Dismay

Dear Sir/Madam

When my daughter wed in July 2006, in lieu of gifts she asked for donations to be made to Doctors without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières as our family had always supported the Group.

Well, I have a regret. I've just read a presentation by Alan Dershowitz
(http://cgis.jpost.com/Blogs/dershowitz/entry/ moonbats_against_israel_posted_by) which you too should read and think about.

"Doctors Without Borders erected borders when it comes to Israeli doctors who flew to the Congo to treat 50 local villagers who had been severely burned.

The Israeli volunteers worked around the clock, treated the burn victims and trained local doctors to perform skin grafts, and donated tons of medical equipment.

But Doctors Without Borders refused to work with the Israeli medics and para medics and treated them "as though we were occupiers." — quoted one Israeli medic.

Dr. Marie Pierre Allie, President of the French branch of the organization, said that Israel's self defense actions in Gaza were actually worse than the Darfur genocide in the Sudan.

Only a blind moonbat could even make such a comparison! MSF has an apparent problem with one democratic Jewish State but is quite at ease with the existence and actions of 56 dysfunctional & corrupt Islamic states.

As one critic has put it well, "These are Doctors With Borders — but without scruples."

Google Doctors without Borders Israel and you will get more confirmation of the reactions around the world.

My family will no longer donate to Doctors without Borders until this cynical, hateful and bitter culture towards Israel — which obviously emanates from the top, ceases.

I shall disseminate this email as widely as I can and shall ask recipients to forward it on also.

George Greenberg
Melbourne Australia

cc: Dr Hilton Immerman OAM
Chief Executive Officer
The Shalom Institute and Shalom College
University of NSW Sydney NSW 2052 Australia
www.shalomcollege.unsw.edu.au and www.encounters.edu.au

Contact Albert Wendroff by email at wendroff39@yahoo.com

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CAN YOU HANDLE THE TRUTH?: POLL SHOWS THE SHOCKING REALITY OF ARAB PUBLIC OPINION
Posted by Barry Rubin, August 10, 2010.
 

This is one of those stories about the Middle East that is totally amazing but not the least bit surprising. What, you ask, do I mean? From the standpoint of the way the region is portrayed in the West this information is incredible but if you understand the area it is exactly what you'd expect.

I'm referring here to the recent 2010 Arab Public Opinion Poll conducted by Zogby International and the University of Maryland for the Brookings Institution. Note that this poll was only done in relatively moderate countries: Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates,

Here are some of the main findings:

--Arab views "hopeful" about the Obama Administration policy in the Middle East declined from 51 to 16 percent between 2009 and 2010, while those "discouraged" rose from 15 to 63 percent. Why? Because while the Obama Administration tried to flatter Arabs and Muslims, go all-out to support the Palestinians, distanced themselves from Israel, and took other steps it was not deemed sufficient.

Nothing the United States did would persuade the audience because of such factors as: different ideologies and ambitions, clashes of interest, the filter of government and Islamist propaganda, and excessively high demands. While the populations are "discouraged" with the administration largely due to their radicalism, the regimes are unhappy with it because they feel the U.S. government isn't strong enough in opposing such enemies as revolutionary Islamism and Iran.

Still, unless U.S. policy comes to resemble that of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, or Jordan, many or most Arabs will continue to be bitter and angry. Obama's levels of support among Arabs are not that different from those of his predecessor.

--What about perceptions of threat? Same story. Those thinking Israel is a huge threat is at 88 percent (down slightly from 95 percent in 2008) showing that overall hostility just doesn't go away. Do you think that any conceivable Israeli policy would change this fact?

Note that while it is would not be surprising if Arabs see Israel as an enemy generally or as being mean to the Palestinians, for Jordanians, Saudis, and Egyptians to describe Israel as the greatest threat to their own countries shows something beyond rational calculation is involved. The prevalent idea is that Israel wants to take over the Middle East or wipe out Islam or destroy the Arabs. This makes a lasting compromise, comprehensive, and friendly peace rather unlikely.

--What about the United States? Here, too, Obama's efforts have failed. The idea that the United States is the other main threat to Arab countries and societies declined from 88 percent under George W. Bush at the end of his term to "only" 77 percent under Obama in 2010. Given the dramatic change in personality and policy this amounts to nothing.

--As for Iran being a threat, this view among the Arabs polled grew from 7 percent in 2008 to a "whopping" 13 in 2009 and then down to 10 percent in 2010. In other words, the Arab masses believe the United States is about eight times more of a threat than Iran. Indeed, if you add in those nine percent of the Arabs polled who view the United Kingdom as the real danger, 86 percent see Washington or London as the greatest threat to themselves. Again, the ruling elites have a different view but no wonder they are so cautious about opposing Iran or lining up with the United States.

--Asked which foreign leader they most admire, almost 70 percent name an Islamist or a supporter of that movement's forces: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan (20), Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (13), Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (12), Hizballah's Hassan Nasrallah (9), Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (7), Usama bin Ladin (6), and the late Iraqi President Saddam Hussein (2).

No relatively moderate Arab leader has any significant international following. And note that two non-Arab Middle Easterners (Erdogan and Ahmadinejad) score so high, showing a decline in Arab nationalism that would have been unthinkable during the 1950-2000 era.

Unfortunately, these and other findings reflect the realities of the Arabic-speaking world: the hegemony of radicalism among the masses, passionate hatred for Israel and the West, and lack of sympathy for democracy or liberalism. And the overall trend is to make things even worse, since there is so much positive feeling toward revolutionary Islamism rather than even militant Arab nationalism.

Presumably, of course, Saudis, Jordanians, Egyptians, and others would have expressed support for their own regimes, so this poll should not necessarily be read as implying support for revolution at home. Yet it certainly--like other such polls--indicates backing for terrorism, extremism, and anti-Westernism in regional terms.

The idea that appeasement, concessions, and flattery will make a big shift has been proven wrong in fact and practice, though no doubt the mythology that Obama has transformed America's position in the region will persist among the very elites and "experts" who should know better. Indeed, this is precisely the way the poll was spun on its being released. The clear effort is to portray the problem as one of U.S. policy even under Obama being too friendly toward Israel, as if no other issue in the region existed.

If Arabs are so passionate in their belief that the United States and UK are a threat to their countries, support in large numbers the Islamist transformation of large parts of the region, think Israel is so profoundly dangerous, and are friendly toward an adventurous, expansionist Iranian regime, can someone possibly be so naive to think that bashing Israel or creating a non-Islamist Palestinian state is going to defuse that deeply and passionately held world view?

Yet this is precisely how the poll was spun by the Brookings Institution: as showing the United States wasn't doing enough to distance itself from Israel. Forget about Islamism versus nationalism, poverty, inequality for women, corruption, repression, the war in Iraq, Iran's nuclear weapons' drive, nearly universal dictatorship, Kurds and Berbers, the growing gap between the Arabic-speaking world and the West or even the faster-progressing states of Latin America and Asia, terroristic violence, and every other issue in the region. We are constantly told that the only thing of any importance is the Palestinian issue.

What are the Arabic-speaking world's real problems?

--A failure of Arab statist dictatorships and Arab nationalist ideology which promised so much and delivered so little. The results include repression, corruption, and far lower living standards (except in low-population, high oil-production Gulf states) than might exist otherwise.

--A stifling traditional culture that clashes with modernity without finding some hybrid solution. This gives rise to the attractive slogan that "Islam is the solution" which promotes an effort to turn the clock back parallel to what happened in past Western societies (the Counter-Reformation, the post-1815 anti-democratic reaction, fascism) and Japan (the revival of feudal military ideology that led to Pearl Harbor).

--The regimes' effort to use violence, scapegoating of the West and Israel, elements of Islamist ideology, and intransigence to win mass support. (Though when one sees the poll figures this is understandable.)

--Internal group conflicts among Sunni, Shia, and Kurds, among other group and regional quarrels.

--The failure to achieve fully integrated states which are sabotaged by pan-Arab and pan-Islamic doctrines.

This is only a partial list. Yet one thing is clear: whether by force or appeasement, seeking popularity or advertising for their own way of life, Western countries cannot solve these problems. The only solution is internal and it will take decades at best. What the West can do is to defend itself, help the most relatively moderate forces (both governments and mass opposition movements as in Lebanon and Iran), and stand up for its own values.

The worst thing it can do is to practice appeasement, a policy that seems to prove the radicals right about Western cowardice and admitted sinfulness, thus inspiring them to more aggression and a stronger popular base of support. Apology and retreat appears to confirm the dysfunctional revolutionary ideologies and favor the revolutionary forces. In the face of the radical advance and Western retreat, demoralized moderates rush to get good surrender terms or join the mob.

Transformation to something better can only come when Arabs and Iranians conclude that the revolutionary road doesn't work and is wrong. Teaching them that it does work and that they are right to pursue it will lengthen the period of change and cost hundreds of thousands of lives.

As long as there is a huge gap between the actual Middle East and the fantasy Middle East so dear to many Western academics, journalists, and diplomats, the region will remain incomprehensible and Western policies will not engage with reality.

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), with Walter Laqueur (Viking-Penguin); the paperback edition of The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan); A Chronological History of Terrorism, with Judy Colp Rubin, (Sharpe); and The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley).

This article is archived at
www.gloria-center.org/gloria/2010/08/ can-you-handle-the-truth

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UN DISREGARDS U.S. ASSURANCES TO ISRAEL ON FLOTILLA INVESTIGATIONS; TALIBAN AGAINST THEIR OWN PEOPLE
Posted by Richad H. Shulman, August 10, 2010.
 

UN DISREGARDS U.S. ASSURANCES TO ISRAEL ON FLOTILLA INVESTIGATIONS

U.S. Ambassador Rice (AP/David Karp)

The UN is disregarding U.S. assurances to Israel on UN flotilla inquiries.

Israel has learned from experience that the constant UN resolutions on, and investigations of, Israel are witch hunts. The New England witch hunts involved non-existent crimes, hysteria, perjury, pre-determined guilt, and cruelty. So does UN involvement with Israel. Israel found no point to honor biased UN proceedings by participating in them.

Israel started its own inquiries into the flotilla. It completed an internal military inquiry. It is conducting a broader inquiry. Israel took an unusual step, to placate foreign demands. It invited some foreign participation.

The UN, however, wants to conduct investigations without awaiting Israeli results. Implication: the UN will not rely upon Israeli self-investigation. UN haste and its record of bias indicate to Israel that it cannot rely upon a UN investigation, lobbied for by enemy states.

The U.S. gave Israel assurances that would shield it from much unfair treatment, if Israel would take the unprecedented step of participating in the UN inquiry. On the basis of those assurances, Israel agreed to participate. But within days, the UN began disregarding those assurances. Turns out, the UN did not define its mission nor spell out its procedures and standards. The UN expert from whom this article is derived, Anne Bayevsky of EyeOnTheUN, suggests Israel would be wise to reconsider its participation.

Although the UN usually ignores civilian killings by the thousands anywhere else, within twenty-four hours, the Security Council dashed out a statement about the killing of nine extremists on one of the ships in the Turkish flotilla, who attacked Israeli troops rather than heed Israel's offer to inspect and deliver the goods itself. The Security Council suggested "a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation conforming to international standards."

Next day, the UN Human Rights Council established its own fact-finding inquiry, in addition. Its mission was to report on Israel's "outrageous attack." The Human Rights Council finding of guilt was made without investigation, like a witch hunt.

Secretary-General Ban started his own investigation, but needed Israeli participation to get anywhere. He may have been seeking Muslim support for a second term. The U.S. went along, and persuaded Israel to join in.

Here are U.S. ambassador Susan Rice's assurances to Israel, and their outcomes:

  1. The Secretary-General's panel would "obviate the need for any overlapping international inquiries." But Sec.-General Ban did not seek to dissolve the Human Rights Council inquiry. Human Rights Council president Sask Gangtok said the Council investigation must proceed.

  2. Ambassador Rice said the Security Council panel would review the national investigations and recommend how to avoid future clashes. The UN panel would not substitute for investigations of past incidents. The Israeli government believed it also was assured that the UN panel would not have the authority to subpoena IDF troops or other witnesses.

Turkey repudiated the scope described by Rice. It denied that the UN panel is no substitute for the national investigations. So did Ban's representative. He said the UN panel would not work only from received national reports, but would investigate what had happened, i.e., review the past events. He said it is up to the panel whether to call IDF troops or other witnesses.

Ban's office refused to reveal the panel's mandate to states, NGOs, and reporters that requested them, apparently because the mandate has not been determined. Malaysia wants "to bring to justice the perpetrators of the attack against the humanitarian flotilla." Malaysia thus has identified the "witch." It also urged another special emergency session on Israel
(Israel Resource News Agency, 8/8/10 from Anne Bayefsky)

This situation with the UN reminds one of President Obama's rejoining the UN Human rights Council under the rationale that the U.S. would work from within to improve it. However, the dominant influence of dictators within it thwarts reform.

It remains oblivious to serious human rights problems and prejudiced against Israel. (This came out in my articles on Durban II.)

One can learn from this:

  1. U.S. assurances over matters it does not control do not count.
  2. Israel should not rely upon U.S. assurances, just as if found when Pres. Obama repudiated Pres. Bush's assurances about settlement blocs and the Administration denied having heard about those publicized assurances.
  3. Israel should not agree to any proposal until it is delineated and ratified. Otherwise, it is agreeing blind. Israel might have learned this from its agreeing to a UN ceasefire resolution for Lebanon before it was changed to Israel's mortal disadvantage and then ratified.
 

CONGRESS BLOCKS, QUESTIONS U.S. MILITARY AID TO LEBANON

As a result of the Lebanese Armed Forces ambush of IDF officers, several congressional leaders have blocked further U.S. military aid to Lebanon, or question whether it is counter-productive. These leaders are: Howard Berman, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, committee member Ron Klein, Eric Cantor, considered the number two GOP representative, and Nita Lowey, Chair of a key House subcommittee.

Rep. Cantor said, "The days of ignoring the LAF's provocations against Israel and protection of Hizbullah in Southern Lebanon are over. Lebanon cannot have it both ways. If it wants to align itself with Hizbullah against the forces of democracy, stability and moderation, there will be consequences."

Israel warns that Hizbullah is increasing its influence in the government. The Members of Congress are concerned that the Lebanese Armed Forces collaborate with Hizbullah. There is concern that Lebanese Armed Forces weaponry would fall into the hands of Hizbullah.

U.S. General James Mattis still believes that the Lebanese Armed Forces is independent and can be built into a counter-force to Hizbullah. Rep. Cantor said that the $720 in U.S. military aid to Lebanon is becoming questionable, as the distinction between the Lebanese Armed Forces and Hizbullah become "blurred." (Arutz-7, 8/10/10).

Lebanese aggression at the border, which some pundits believe related to rivalries among Hizbullah, the government of Lebanon, Syria, and Iran, could ignite another war. UNIFIL does not seem to be preventing belligerence. The UN just renewed UNIFIL's mission, apparently without reviewing it.

There seems to be no U.S. review or humility in its military aid program, despite its anti-Soviet arms to Afghanistan falling into Radical hands, its aid to Pakistan possibly being used for terrorism, its arms to the Palestinian Authority in Gaza falling into Hamas' hands, and its arms to the rest of the Palestinian Authority being controlled by terrorists.
 

HIZBULLAH REVEALS 'PROOF' THAT ISRAEL HAD RAFIQ HARIRI ASSASSINATED

Nasrallah with young Harari (AP/Hezbollah Media Office)

Hizbullah chief Sheikh Nasrallah promised dramatic evidence proving that Israel, not Hizbullah or Syria, the main suspects against which the UN has reported evidence or leads, assassinated former Lebanese PM Rafiq Hariri. Now he has displayed two videos as proof. Against Israel.

First, he said, Israeli surveillance planes flew near the site of the assassination.

Second, an alleged Israeli spy told Hariri that Hizbullah was trying to assassinate him. Nasrallah interprets this as an Israeli cover up of its own plot to assassinate Hariri, who was anti-Syrian. Then a furor would erupt sufficient to force Syrian occupation troops out of Lebanon.

The lack of evidence in those videos left observers wondering what is wrong with Nasrallah (Arutz-7, 8/10/10). http://www.israelnationalnews.com/

The assassination did lead to a furor. This could not have been known in advance. Israel and Lebanon lost a leader, in Rafiq Hariri, who might have freed Lebanon and made peace.

Surveillance planes fly over large areas. A possible Israeli tip off does not indicate a cover up. According to the Islamists, many attacks on people Israel needs and upon Israelis are done by Israel in order to get the world angry at Muslims. After thousands of acts of terrorism against Israel, and thousands of Israeli casualties, the world yawns over Israeli casualties. It hardly pauses over millions of non-Arab Sudanese casualties. By the Islamist logic, Israel would have to wipe out half its population in order to get international sympathy. Think this is what the Mossad is about?

Islamists call everything somebody else's conspiracy. This points away from their own crimes. Ironically, as rebels, they are conspirators. The lack of evidence and logic by which they casually toss off accusations breeds skepticism of them.
 

NEW QUESTIONS FOR GUANTANAMO MILITARY COMMISSIONS

The Obama administration wants to show that the new military commissions are feasible. The commissions have two cases posing interesting questions.

Omar Khadr was 15 years old when he was captured eight years ago. He was accused of killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan. Defense counsel contend that he, himself, was a victim, a child soldier.

Ibrahim al-Cosi was an aide to Osama bin-Laden. Under the former military commission, he was accused of major terrorism. Then came the new type of commission, which is not allowed to use coerced evidence. The charges were reduced, he made a plea bargain, but now is having a trial to determine whether the sentence should be less than he had agreed to (Jess Bravin, Wall St. J., 8/10/10, A4).

Child soldiers are ravaging sub-Sahara Africa, with their assault rifles. This is a serious problem receiving little attention.
 

MUSLIM GROUP SUES FOR POLICE DATA ON RAIDED IMAM'S DEATH

The Michigan chapter of the Council on America-Islamic Relations is suing the Detroit, Dearborn, and Michigan State Police for not answering its 10 Freedom of Information Act filings for surveillance tapes, witness testimony, and a recording of a 911 call. Those police agencies have not answered inquiries. The Justice Dept. investigated the raid, but has given no word of results.

The cases involve an imam's death by gunfire in an FBI raid, last autumn. Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah of a Detroit mosque, Masjid Al-Haqq, was suspected of running a criminal gang, Ummah. Ummah's goal is a separate state, subject to Islamic law, within the U.S. (Wall St. J., 8/10/10, A7).
 

GERMAN POLICE CLOSE HAMBURG MOSQUE

German police closed the Taiba mosque in Hamburg, suspicious as a meeting place for Radical Muslims. Police are searching and confiscating materials from it and from the houses of leading members.

That was the mosque that some of the 9/11 hijackers used to attend. (Associated Press in Wall St. J., 8/10/10, A10).

WIKILEAKS RESULTS IN AFGHANISTAN: UPDATE

Top Pentagon Brass asked FBI help (Getty/Chip Somodevilla)

As you undoubtedly heard, Wikileaks put on public display 76,000 secret documents about the war in Afghanistan. Included are names and addresses of Afghans who work with the government and with the U.S. against the Taliban.

Human rights groups [and the U.S. government] are concerned that the Taliban would review the documents, learn the identify and whereabouts of those Afghans, and assassinate them. The Taliban have stepped up assassination of people who cooperate in the war against the Taliban.

Human rights groups, including Amnesty International, urge Wikileaks to block out the names and addresses of government agents. Wikileaks asked the groups to supply the staff for the task. So far, no volunteers. Wikileaks accuses the Pentagon, for refusing to supply staff, of trying to bankrupt Wikileaks. Presumably hiring the clerks would cost a lot.

Meanwhile, the Taliban say that they have the staff to comb through the files and assemble a death list (Jeanne Whalen, Wall St. J., 8/10/10, A8).

It was predicted that the Taliban would react that way. The question is what the government can and will do about deliberate leaks of secret war dossiers. In earlier commentary, the New York Times and Wall St. Journal concluded that the material did not reveal anything new to Americans. It was too raw for conclusions and too detailed for broad interpretation. However, it was a jolting reminder of the difficulties of war, there.

We reported on a similar case in Israel. There, the Left made heroes out of the leakers, whose revelations could have led to whole battlefield defeats for their country. With the Left, ideology trumps national security.

The Wikileaks case is grave, but there seems to be little public indignation over it. There is far more indignation now, about 24 years after Jonathan Pollard was convicted of giving to Israel U.S. secrets about Arab military movements. He still is blamed for what he was not charged, and for which eventually pro-Soviet spies were convicted — turning over to the USSR the identities of American spies. This enabled about a dozen U.S. agents to be executed.
 

NEW YORK GROUP ON NEW YORK MOSQUE

The Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam, based in New York, disapproves of the Ground Zero mosque.

The Coalition would support a Center comprising places of worship representing the various religions of the victims of 9/11, to foster harmony and unity. Based on the background of Imam Rauf, his prior statements about the 9/11 attacks, his refusal to condemn Radical Islamic entities such as Hamas and other terrorist groups, and his prior use of funding from countries that practice intolerance, the Coalition disapproves of his proposed Center.

Creation of this mosque would be insensitive to the feelings of the thousands of people who lost loved ones in the 9/11 attacks, as well as to the majority of New Yorkers and Americans everywhere who perceive this mosque as disrespectful and as undermining our unity against Radical Islam.

Americans need to continue to educate themselves about the danger Radical Islam poses to the freedoms we cherish (Satya Hitaya of the Coalition Steering Committee, 8/19/10).
 

INDONESIA REARRESTS RADICAL CLERIC

Trying to curb lslamist terrorism, Indonesia rearrested its best known Radical cleric, Abu Bakr Bashir. He was taken on suspicion of establishing a new jihadi cell in Aceh province.

Mr. Bashir, is believed to be a spiritual leader of the al-Qaeda affiliate Jemaah Islamiyah, which murdered a couple of hundred people. He is thought to have set up the cell's network and provided financial support. He denies anything more than promoting Islamic law. He accused the U.S. of prompting his arrest but calls it a favor to him, for he said Allah would reward him for it.

Bashir had co-founded an Islamic boarding school attended by several students later convicted of terrorist acts.

He had been arrested twice before, and served time in prison. One conviction was overturned. The more serious charges were not proved. After that fumbling, observers speculate, the government would not move against him now without commanding evidence. The government has followed the money trail (Patrick Barta, Wall St. J., 8/10/10, A8).

This is another example of international jihad almost all over and unrelated to Israel. The U.S. is in the same boat as Israel; the "sharks" are circling the boat.
 

TALIBAN AGAINST THEIR OWN PEOPLE

Ten doctors, nurses, and technicians from a non-proselytizing Christian NGO, the International Assistance Mission, went to a remote part of Afghanistan to treat people's eyes. They didn't bear arms or accept government guards. The Taliban captured and executed them. Six were Americans.

A spokesman for the Taliban said that the group was discovered with a Bible. He said, "the punishment for spying is death." That is what he said, but the Taliban murder anyone who assists the government or the people. For ordinary Afghans, the danger of execution is daily.

Suppose the U.S. withdraws prematurely, and the Taliban take over. Thousands of people who worked with the government, for the U.S., or in behalf of the people would face execution. Shall we leave them in the lurch, as well as leave al-Qaida a sanctuary? (Wall St. J., 8/9/10, A16.)

This is the face of jihad. Here, too, the issue has nothing to do with the Arab-Israel conflict. Rather, the Arab-Israel conflict is another front in which jihad is carried out.

Some of my critics are stooping ever lower in their conspiracy theories to blame everything on Israel and Jews, positing a radical Zionism that never existed, while ignoring the Radical Islam that does exist and murders Americans. They increasingly sound unhinged, especially as they cite jihadists sources, sources of enemies of the U.S.. Amusingly, one says he has nothing against Jews, just Zionists, but has nothing to say against the other, who has everything against Jews.

They question my loyalty on the basis of the canard about dual loyalty of Jews and ignore the view of Radical Islam that tells followers to be loyal to the Muslims and not to their countries. This throws into question the critics' loyalty.

Not only are Radical Muslims not loyal to the U.S., but many leftists are anti-American. They blame the world's problems on the U.S.. Not a peep about this out of my ostensibly loyal critics. They never express sympathy with the problems jihad imposes on the U.S., that I report. This is as inconsistent as their denouncing Israel for non-existent oppression of the Arabs, and their silence about existing Arab oppression of the Arabs. This throws into question the critics' sympathy for oppressed Arabs. It exposes their alleged concern as an excuse for Israel-bashing.

They read my column avidly, but pretend not to have noticed its many reports on the U.S. national interest and its theme of international jihad fighting everywhere but particularly hating the U.S. for trying somewhat to stop them. The critics ignore my showing the common national security interest of the U.S. and Israel, to claim, what none of my articles do, that I favor Israel over the U.S..

What do they suppose other readers conclude from weeks of those critics calling the articles lies, without showing anything wrong with the reports and interpretation or simply changing the subject. One's chief argument is to allege that Israel does it too. His moral standard is, condemn Israel for allegedly doing it too, but not to condemn the other side for doing it. Too self-serving.
 

ANTI-LIBEL TOURISM BILL SIGNED INTO FEDERAL LAW

The Speech Act protecting Americans from libel tourism has been signed into federal law. The law shields Americans from foreign interference with our freedom of expression. Americans now can expose in speech and in writing our country's enemies without fear of being sued and losing because of unfair foreign laws. This is a great boon for American national security.

Americans have been sued abroad, particularly in England, which makes it much more difficult to defend from such suits. The result was that rich foreign Islamists, among others, could sue Americans for libel, the Americans were deemed guilty until proved innocent, but proof was difficult, and many Americans could not afford the legal costs of frivolous and malicious suits.

Worse, British courts played into the hands of jihadists, by asserting jurisdiction without significant British interest.

Along came Rachel Ehrenfeld, victim of such a suit. She refused to cave in. She got the New York legislature to pass a law protecting American assets. This law became the model for three other states and now the federal government (Rachel Ehrenfeld, 8/10/10).

Problem is, New York's law offers more protection, but the federal statute may supersede state laws. An amendment is being proposed in Congress (Daniel Huff, MEF news, 8/10/10).

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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FROM ISRAEL: WHERE IS IT ALL GOING?
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 10, 2010.
 

Wish I could say I knew, in this lunatic world. There are, for me, only two givens: There is not going to be a "two state solution" and we are here to stay.

~~~~~~~~~~

US envoy George Mitchell was here again, to no particular avail from his perspective. In spite of a three-hour meeting and his best efforts, he was unable to convince PA leaders to come on board for direct talks.

To put it boldly, my friends, Abbas is running scared. I don't mean simply worried about his political viability (though there is that). I suggest that he is frightened for his life. It is this essential fear that gives him the backbone to continue to say no to the Obama administration.

Yesterday, according to Khaled Abu Toameh and Herb Keinon, writing in the JPost, "representatives of dozens of Palestinian factions and organizations...warned Abbas against succumbing to pressure to open direct talks unconditionally." Trust me, they can be quite "persuasive." And these representatives included members of Abba's own Fatah party, so he doesn't even have a solid home base supporting him. Abbas is not crazy.

What these groups want is exactly what Abbas has been demanding: They want the negotiations decided before there are negotiations. They want us to agree to the borders of the projected Palestinian state before Abbas will sit down with us. Well...Netanyahu is not crazy either.

~~~~~~~~~~

The question is how long this will go on, before Obama throws in the towel and admits he cannot promote "peace" here at this time. Or, at the very least, allow the effort he's expending to that end now to just slowly dissipate, without admitting anything.

Then there is the question as to whether he would ever be honest enough to say that Palestinian Arab intransigence got in the way. This is undoubtedly a rhetorical question.

Mitchell, on talking about his intention to return again soon, spoke, according to Reuters, about "difficulties and obstacles" the sides are facing. "The sides"? There is always a moral-equivalency scenario waiting to be trotted out.

~~~~~~~~~~

As to why there will not be a "two-state solution," you've heard from me several times. But here I share Minister Bennie Begin on the same issue:

Says Begin: "The Palestinians are after a 'two-stage solution' and not a two-state solution." First stage is pushing us back to pre-'67 lines, and the second is our destruction.

He reminds us that Article 19 in Chapter One of the Fatah charter states: "Armed struggle is a strategy, not a tactic. The armed revolution of the Arab Palestinian people is a crucial element in the battle for liberation and for the elimination of the Zionist presence. This struggle will not stop until the Zionist entity is eliminated and Palestine is liberated."

Thus has the PLO refused to give consent to an article in a final agreement that would state "that this agreement puts an end to the conflict and concludes all claims by the parties." And thus does the PLO deny the historic connection between the Jewish people and the land of Israel.

Begin's historical tracking of prior negotiations is instructive:
www.jpost.com/Opinion/Op-EdContributors/ Article.aspx?id=184217

~~~~~~~~~~

The newly constituted UN panel charged with investigating the flotilla incident — consisting of former prime minister of New Zealand, Geoffrey Palmer; outgoing Colombian President Alvaro Uribe; Israeli representative Joseph Ciechanover; and Turkish representative Őzdem Sanberk — will be holding it first meeting tonight at the UN in NY.

Unless there is a fifth participant from the UN itself, unmentioned, this may be a fairly balanced panel.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon told the press that the panel was "not designed to determine individual criminal responsibility, but to examine and identify the facts, circumstances and the context of the incident, as well as to recommend ways of avoiding future incidents."

We'll see.

Unfortunately, Ban has denied that an agreement was struck with Israel stipulating that military commanders would not be questioned. Netanyahu has countered by saying that "Israel would not participate in any panel which wants to question IDF soldiers."

~~~~~~~~~~

The good news for today is that Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY), who chairs the House Appropriations Subcommittee has acted (at least for the moment) to freeze $100 million in US military aid to Lebanon for 2010; the funds had been approved but were not yet dispersed. This action was prompted by the recent sniping attack on IDF officers by the Lebanese army, which Lowey calls an "outrageous incident."

"This incident was tragic and was entirely avoidable," she said. "US assistance is intended to enhance our safety and that of our allies."

The subcommittee is said to now be watching the Lebanese response.

~~~~~~~~~~

Interestingly, Howard Berman (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, had put a hold on this disbursement before Lowey did — before the sniping incident even occurred, actually.

Berman has concerns about Hezbollah influence on the Lebanese armed forces (LAF). "Until we can...assure that the LAF is a responsible actor, I cannot in good conscience allow the United States to continue sending weapons to Lebanon." His office is now investigating such matters as how diligently the LAF keeps track of weapons received from the US and how well it works with UNIFIL.

~~~~~~~~~~

Both of these Congresspersons are to be saluted for proper action here.

But it is not all a done deal, as ultimately the investigations may be deemed to have secured satisfactory information and the assistance may be reinstated.

It's hard to imagine that an investigation that is diligent and on the up-and-up with regard to Hezbollah involvement with the Lebanese military could lead to reinstatement of assistance. Just two days ago, member of the Lebanese parliament Mohammed Raad, declared: "All calculations from now on will be built upon the notion that the Lebanese Army is ready to engage in confrontation, backed by the embrace of the Lebanese people and the support of the Resistance [Hezbollah]." That sounds pretty clear to me.

But matters are never that simple, and I can imagine a situation in which the Obama administration would claim that lending this assistance to the Lebanese was in the best interests of the US.

Nawwaf Moussawi, a senior Hezbollah leader and also a member of the Lebanese parliament today advised the Lebanese government to tell the US to keep its money and to seek military assistance from places such as Iran instead. Cynic that I am, I can see the Obama administration jumping at the bait and pushing for the reinstatement of the assistance under the badly mistaken impression that this would help ensure US influence in Lebanon. (That is his MO, is it not?)

~~~~~~~~~~

In closing, I share this, taken from MEMRI, without comment:

"A senior commander in the Iraqi military told the Qatari daily Al-'Arab that, in the last two months, the US has deployed over 7,000 troops along the Iraq-Iran border, as well as radars and batteries of anti-ballistic missiles. According to the source, this has convinced the Iraqi leaders that the US intends to launch an airstrike against Iran from Iraqi territory, and that the US will not withdraw before this strike takes place."
www.thememriblog.org:80/blog_personal/en/ 28976.htm

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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MUSLIM PEOPLE CULTURE, THINKING AND WAY OF LIFE
Posted by Udi Schayat, August 10, 2010.

The following was written by my friend who experienced the Muslim society and is very familiar with Muslim people culture, thinking and way of life (he/she preferred to be anonymous. It is about two people experiences):

 

I have learned from an ex-Muslim colleague that it is very difficult for families to go against Islam and be more secular and open to other religions and cultures if there is one fanatic Muslim in the family who is staunch practicing the Islam. No one in the entire big family will dare to speak up against the family leader, as his life will be in danger:

Most Muslims even if they live in small family units are still very much connected to the large family (clan). Let's say a family has 5 sons and 4 daughters each living in with their spouses and children, still the elder male or the more religious male calls shots in many ways. My friend said that normally it will be elder of the male children who will take up the father or family chief role. If there is a fanatic among the male children, he will be the one who through control using religious laws control the behavior of the whole large family (clan). This type of control will not allow others to divert or think for themselves. They will not have the courage to go against the religious male. This is what stops many free thinkers in the Muslim community to come out of the shell.

Muslims live with a shame and blame philosophy unlike westerners who believe in good and evil.

Contact Udi Schayat by email at udischayat@yahoo.com

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PLAN FOR JUDENREIN STATE; FAKE UPROAR OVER FAKE GRAVES; BETRAYAL BY 'MODERATE' MUSLIM STATE
Posted by Steven Shamrak, August 10, 2010.
 

Plan for Judenrein State.

Ahead of the Arab League's conditional endorsement of direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas said that he hoped an agreement would be reached that included the establishment of a PA state within the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as its capital and a solution to the problem of the families of Arabs who left Israel when the modern Jewish state was born.

He set a number of "measures and conditions", including: "I will never allow a single Israeli to live among us on Palestinian land"

Abbas has demanded that Israeli completely freeze construction for Jews in areas east of the 1949 armistice line, including north, south and east Jerusalem, and that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu commit to creating a PA state with borders based on the armistice line. Until those conditions are met, Abbas has said, the PA will not negotiate.

Abbas said he had discussed the "right of return" with Olmert, and had warned that the issue was "very dangerous" and must be resolved "according to the Arab initiative." (Didn't Arabs reject the 1949 armistice line? It was before they invented the fake "Palestinian people". If Jews are not allowed to live in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, shouldn't Israel insist on removal of all "Palestinians" from Jewish?) He added "I will never agree that there be Jewish soldiers in NATO, and I will never agree that there will be a single Israeli among us on Palestinian soil." (And Muslims should not be allowed to serve as NATO or UN soldiers and step on Jewish soil! It is only fare, isn't it?)

Food for Thought. Steven Shamrak

I have never seen that Israel-haters care for producing any evidence to support their bogus anti-Israel claims. But they are constantly bombarding Jews with the questions only to brush off our factually based and well prepared answers as irrelevant. They do it to create an atmosphere of doubt about position of Zionism and make Jews look apologetic and weak!

Press Cooperates with Arab Aggression. A Lebanon army's spokesman confirmed Israel' s claims that Lebanese forces fired first during deadly border skirmish. IDF officials said it appears journalists and photographers were informed of the intended ambush and were deployed to the site even before the gunfire erupted. Officials said many of the journalists work for outlets that are affiliated with Hezbollah.

Usual Lies and Blame Game. Egyptian security sources admitted on Wednesday, that rocket attack on Eilat was launched from within its territory in the Sinai and blamed a Gaza-based terrorist group, without identifying it. Other sources identified by Hamas by name. Cairo previously had claimed that the Katyusha rockets were not fired from within its borders

No Pressure on White House. The White House rejected Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's offer for a public debate with Barack Obama. White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs said that Tehran has not displayed seriousness on the nuclear issue. (PA has the same insincerity about peace with Israel! Must Israel continue talking to mortal enemies? The US does not suffer from this 'Victim mentality' syndrome!)

Fake Uproar over Fake Graves. Assistant Secretary General for Palestinian Affairs Mohamed Sobeih of the Arab League condemned the digging up of what he said were Muslim graves in Jerusalem's Mamillah cemetery by Israeli authorities, ignoring the facts that: the tombstones were brand-new constructions and were being faked, in an attempt to grab some land from Independence Park.

Awakening of Israeli Jews from 'Peace' Nightmare. A telephone poll broadcast on Israeli Television's Channel 1 showed the following results: 62% Israeli Jews oppose additional unilateral withdrawals. 21% were in favour.

No UN Inquiry! A week ago: 1) At least 29 people were killed during violent riots that took place in Karachi, Pakistan. 2) Five rockets were fired at Israel's Southern Coastal Resort of Eilat. 3) An explosion took place in the residence of a senior Hamas terrorist in Gaza some 15 people were killed and many injured in what is believed to have been a work accident. 4) An explosives-laden vehicle driven by a suicide bomber detonated before reaching its target Monday, killing five Afghan children. 5) The U.S. command in Baghdad "refutes that 535 people were killed in Iraq during the month of July". It put the total number of people killed by "enemy action" at 222, including 161 civilians (...and is it OK?)

Another Humiliating and Useless Meeting. On 1 August 2010, President Shimon Peres and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak held a diplomatic working meeting at the Presidential Palace in Cairo. (How many times has Mubarak visited Jerusalem?)

Grad Missile Attack on Ashkelon. Last week the Foreign Ministry instructed Israeli ambassadors to file an immediate complaint to the president of the UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council in Geneva. This is "a clear attempt to kill men, women and children and is a clear violation of international law and sheds light on the murderous, barbaric and violent intent of the missile attack" (As usual, no emergency session of the UN security council was called. No media and political frenzy of condemnation of Hamas actions!) At the same day, a United Nations panel of 'experts' has raised concerns about Israeli discrimination against Palestinians, demanding Israel stop targeted killings and torture. (Why is "targeted killing" good tool of war for coalition in Iraq and Afghanistan but not for Israel? This is discrimination against Israel!)

Where is International Outrage? French President Nikolas Sarkozy has ordered the expulsion from France of illegal Gypsy immigrants, known as Roma, and is preparing to demolish thousands of homes, despite growing accusations that his country is acting racist towards members of Roma.

UN Provides Financial Support to Terrorists. Senior Hamas commander Issa al-Batran, who taught at a UN school in Al-Bureij, was killed in an Israeli airstrike that followed a Grad rocket attack on the city of Ashkelon. While several news outlets reported details of Batran's past, including previous attempts on his life, but they failed to note his day job as a United Nations-employed schoolteacher.

'Illegal' Import of Violence. Police Commissioner of Israel Dudi Cohen revealed that 10% of murder cases that occurred since the beginning of 2010 involved illegal aliens.

Hypocrisy of the Headlines:

"Passive communicators do not defend their own personal boundaries and thus allow aggressive people to abuse or manipulate them through fear. Passive communicators are also typically not likely to risk trying to influence anyone else. Aggressive people do not respect the personal boundaries of others and thus are liable to harm others while trying to influence them. A person communicates assertively by overcoming fear to speak his or her mind or trying to influence others, but doing so in a way that respects the personal boundaries of others. Assertive people are also willing to defend themselves against aggressive incursions" — Assertiveness vs Aggressiveness and Passiveness — Unfortunately, Israel is been behaving as Passive communicator (victim) for too long!

Another Betrayal by 'Moderate' Muslim State.

Some 90,000 leaked the US military records amount a blow-by-blow account of six years of the Afghanistan war. The documents — including classified cables and assessments between military officers and diplomats — describe the US fears that ally Pakistan's intelligence service was actually aiding the Afghan insurgency and "allows representatives of its spy service to meet directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organize networks of militant groups that fight against American soldiers in Afghanistan and even hatch plots to assassinate Afghan leaders." (This is a well-know secret, but there is no will to address this issue and no one is protesting the transfer of tens of billion of the US tax payers' dollars to Islamic terror sponsoring states like Pakistan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and other 'Moderates'!)

Steven Shamrak was involved in the Moscow Zionist movement. He worked as a construction engineer at the Moscow Olympic Games project and as a computer consultant in Australia. He has been publishing an Internet editorial letter about the Arab-Israel conflict since August 2001 and has a website www.shamrak.com. He can be reached by email at StevenShamrak@gmail.com

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NO TO IMPERIALIST MOSQUE ATOP US GRAVESITE
Posted by Paul Lademain, August 9, 2010.
 

Pundits who argue that US protection of freedom of religion requires the government to concede to any demand made by any religion and especially to the demands of Islamic money brokers and imams have either failed to educate themselves about the US Constitution and our Bill of Rights or else they are totally ignorant of Islam and therefore cannot grasp that it is a political movement encapsulated in the trappings of a religion and that Islamic mosques are intended to be symbolic constructions preferably built atop their vanquished enemies graves.

Moreover, barring the construction of a mosque whenever or wherever a Muslim wants to build one does NOT abridge the freedom of religion of Muslims inasmuch as Muslims can venerate their faith whenever they chose with or without a mega-million dollar mosque. Mosques have sprung up throughout the US and that ought to be proof enough that the complaints of their advocates are fallacious.

Inasmuch as the US and rest of the Western Hemisphere isn't vanquished and is not about to be, Mayor Bloomberg's showboating, literally in a boat and at the foot of our national monument forces us to classify him as a knee-jerk contrarian. You oppose slavery? A knee-jerk contrarian will dig deep into his or her debate bag and pull out some lame counter-argument to assert that slavery is better than outright extermination. We wonder about people who do this. Why is it so easy for them to sever their ties to ethical principles or misunderstand the moral principles upon which our nation is founded. Are their principles of right and wrong so ephemeral? We sadly conclude that many if not most knee-jerk contrarians posture and pose as they do because they are starved for attention. How better way to garner attention than to automatically howl opposition to whatever objective their perceived opposition supports?

The mosque proposed for construction on the ashes of the innocents exterminated by the filthiest element of Islam must be banned. We read the Koran and its hair-raising Surrahs and we studied Nasser's Little Red Book as well as Mein Kampf and so we already know the connection between these nauseating fascist screeds. And we learned all we need to know about Sharia when the Egyptian pilot drove flight 990 into the Sea off Nantucket and our views against Sharia and our opposition to all those who support Islamic imperialism were set in stone on 9/11.

Allowing the construction of a mosque atop the graves of our own does NOT signify "toleration of other faiths" but rather the toleration of imperialistic aggression forcibly imposed by politicians in high places who are posturing, willfully-blind, knee-jerking contrarians. The impression they give, true or not, is that they are a privileged clutch of wealthy NY Jews who are all too willing to swallow insults to our nation in exchange for personal aggrandizement or perhaps commercial privileges of a nature about which we can only speculate. Curious minds want to know: Does Mayor Bloomberg get building permits granted by, let us say Dubai, for the benefit his non-US based operations to thank him for supporting Islamic deceit? Will the NYC Landmark Commission be allowed to lunch with Abdullah as did Tom Friedman of the NY Times, or receive other direct or indirect emoluments? Just asking.

Americans will not stomach the construction of a mosque on the graves of our own, and should it ever be built, you can bet there will be a groundswell of voters who will ensure that it will be seized under the powers of eminent domain in order to convert this insulting, vulgar edifice into a YMCA for the use of all people of every race and religion. Especially Jews.

Viva to America and its sane citizenry from the SC4Z (Secular Christians for Zion)

Contact Paul Lademain by email at lademain@verizon.net.

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'HUMANITARIAN' MEDICINE THREATENS GAZANS' HEALTH; LEGAL EXPERTS: NO PALESTINIAN ARAB 'RIGHT OF RETURN'
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 9, 2010.
 

NETANYAHU AT TURKISH FLOTILLA INQUIRY: 1. TESTIMONY

Israel's PM Netanyahu described his policy on the Hamas menace as:

1. Get Gilad Shalit freed

2. Retaliate Immediately against Gaza firing on Israel

3. Keep war materiel out of Gaza

4. Prevent a humanitarian crisis there.

He omitted as a goal preventing the local manufacture and storage of weapons. Gaza has an arms industry that keeps improving its rockets. For the most part, Netanyahu ignores this build-up, so long as Hamas does not shoot. When Hamas shoots off a rocket, and Israel retaliates, it may strike one weapons factory out of apparently a long list (IMRA, 8/9/10).

Israel's failure to eliminate all known weapons factories and warehouses means that Hamas has much more to shoot, when it wishes to. This shortsighted view characterizes Israeli policy.

Netanyahu's calm statement of the facts contrasts sharply with opponents' strident and unfounded accusations. He avers the facts, they have an aversion to facts.

When it comes to Israeli democracy, he did exaggerate. I have written before about its shortcomings, so will give one key example now. Israel's High Court is a self-perpetuating body. Absent constitutional separation of powers, the Court overrules the other branches of government not on the basis of law, and replaces the law or rules with what the judges personally prefer according to their generally Far Leftist ideology.

Netanyahu would have been more accurate if he had restricted himself to stating that the government does not persecute Arabs.

Without explicitly stating it, Netanyahu made clear that Israel is humanitarian, its enemies are not, and the anti-Zionist propagandists exploit the label of human rights to support the inhumane against the humane. The flotilla was an example.

Some readers cite the many governments that denounce Israel. That is bandwagon propaganda, not evidence of anything. The denunciations are not surprising. Years ago, antisemitism was less widespread, because most of the world was not connected with the Nazi and Soviet leading purveyors of it. These days, the world is more inter-connected and the dozens of members of the Organization of Islamic Conference and their leftist allies and their appeasement-minded suppliers are active all over.
 

NETANYAHU AT TURKISH FLOTILLA INQUIRY: 1A. TESTIMONY

Appearing before the Turkel Commission investigating the Turkish flotilla, PM Netanyahu explained the events of several months. He made these points:

Gaza is run by Hamas, a terrorist organization whose charter calls for eradicating Israel. For that purpose, Iran has been smuggling weapons into Gaza and providing funds, training, and intelligence. Two of their intercepted shipments carried hundreds of tons of arms.

Hamas accumulates weapons and attacks Israel. "Much of the time, the firing at Israel emanates from populated areas in Gaza — from homes and schools, from sites adjacent to hospitals, mosques, UN facilities, etc.." These are war crimes that continue. So is Hamas incitement to genocide and its refusal of Red Cross visits to the Israeli soldier it abducted. Hence Israel imposes a blockade over what is a humane crisis by Hamas against Israel.

Netanyahu noted that other commissions, which declare strong interest in human rights and international law, manage to overlook [mostly] Hamas' war crimes.

The blockade was only partial. Israel let into Gaza food, medicine, fuel, electricity, and water. Israel also let in for treatment about 1,500 patients and family escorts a month from Gaza. Nevertheless, anti-Israel activists pretended there was a humanitarian crisis by Israel in Gaza. They convinced the media.

Israel loosened the blockade. Photographers tried to show the world Gaza markets stocked with food, but the media ignored them. The public relations effort declaring a humanitarian crisis did not abate. Although the flotilla was described as humanitarian relief, a "...spokeswoman for the flotilla said on May 27, 2010: 'Our mission is not to provide humanitarian aid, but rather to break the blockade.'" Israel, not the flotilla organizers and not the UN saw to it that such humanitarian goods as the flotilla carried were delivered.

Israel sought for months to gain Turkish cooperation to avoid confrontation. PM Netanyahu ordered his top brass to avoid violence if possible, but Israeli troops have a right to defend themselves. He also embedded foreign reporters among his troops, so they could relate what happened. He knew that those engaged in a propaganda war would falsely accuse Israel of attacking innocent peace protesters. They did, but the videos then refuted them.

Speaking of violence, Netanyahu pointed out that in the Mideast, other ",,,governments shoot their political opponents in broad daylight, brutally repress women and stone them to death, and systematically deny their minorities and entire populations the most basic human rights."

"In these countries, there is no free press to expose such crimes, no genuine parliaments to hold hearings, no independent courts to give the accused a fair trial, and no local human rights organizations to file reports. There is only tyranny and terror."

Israel is different. It has faced unprecedented military and terrorist attacks for 62 years, while striving to retain democracy. His presenting himself before the Commission is an example. Israel investigates its own actions more than the other countries, and with high standards. How many countries that accuse Israel would invite foreign observers to monitor the investigation? (IMRA, 8/9/10).
 

NY CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES ON GROUND ZERO MOSQUE

he two major party candidates in New York's Eighth Congressional District, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (Dem.) and Susan Kohn (GOP) differ strongly with each other on the Ground Zero mosque complex.

Rep. Nadler characterizes the mosque sponsors as moderates and opponents as engaging in "hate speech." He says: "As an elected official who believes strongly in the separation of church and state, I contend that the government has no business deciding whether there should or should not be a Muslim house of worship near Ground Zero. And, as a representative of New Yorkers of all faiths and cultures, I find the singling out of Muslim-Americans — because of their faith — for animus and hate to be shameful and divisive."

Ms. Kohn denies the issue is the right to build a mosque and religious freedom. She said the issue is "a very, very poor choice of location" and "the feelings of the families of the victims of 9/11." She and like-minded opponents of the proposed location do not engage in hate speech but "sensitivity speech." They plead "for respect and understanding."

Kohn finds Nadler misrepresenting this issue and the views of it by many constituents. He mis-defines the issue in order to defame dissidents. Therefore, she finds that is Rep. Nadler "who is being shameful and divisive toward people in the Eighth Congressional District — including those who lost loved ones in 9/11." She claims this is typical of his tenure (from Kohn press release, sent me in response to my request for a statement).

Many Americans express dismay over politicians' polarization. The problem is exacerbated when politicians mis characterize their challengers in order to make them look bad. They also posture self-righteously over positions not taken, to make themselves look good.

Some of my readers attribute to me positions I have not taken, and then condemn me for it.
 

ARABS POLLED ABOUT OBAMA AND U.S.

n President Bush's last year in office, the U.S. polled a 15% positive rating among the Arabs. President Obama swept in with a "new beginning." Now the U.S. polls a 12% positive rating. Arabs explain that they do not think he is changing U.S. policy favorably to them, especially on the Arab-Israel conflict.

Obama's own popularity among the Arabs has plummeted from 45% in 2009 to 20% today. The Arabs' negative rating of him has soared from 23% to 62%.

"This year's poll surveyed close to 4,000 people in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan, Lebanon, and the United Arab Emirates." 86% of them say they want peace. The percentage favoring war despite any peace agreement fell from 25% to 12%..

Last year, 40% thought that Iran should be pressured to end its nuclear weapons program. Now, only 20% do. 77% think that Iran has a right to nuclear development [but is that with or without weapons?]. 57% think that a nuclear-armed Iran would benefit the Mideast (IMRA, 8/9/10). http://www.imra.org.il/

Polls present some problems: (1) More effort seems expended on polls than on informing the people polled; (2) Polls may present leading questions; and (3) Polls may reflect or create misunderstanding and dashed expectations that were extravagant in the first place. What do the Arabs polled mean by "peace?" If it means Israel putting itself behind indefensible borders, as Abbas demands, then the peace agreement would be a temporary one.
 

'HUMANITARIAN' MEDICINE THREATENS GAZANS' HEALTH

Angry Hamas officials have released to al-Jazeera more details about the phony humanitarian aid they were shipped by the flotillas.

One country sent 10 truckloads of medicine, all out of date and now dangerous. Other countries sent dialysis machines after they had been used the maximum number of times.

A Gaza official said, "It is deplorable that our Arab brothers are sending burial shrouds for the children of Gaza." On the other hand, "...Hamas officials have publicly complained of a shortage of burial shrouds, and have made a show of wrapping bodies in flags instead."

In any case, 70% of the medical supplies are useless. They are sent to landfills. Absent a proper waste-disposal system, the medicines leach into the ground. This presents an environmental hazard to the people (Arutz-7, 8/9/10).

The so-called humanitarians are turning Gaza into a toxic waste dump. One may ask where is their compassion that they have expressed for the people of Gaza.
 

ISRAEL: LEBANON MUST DISMISS OFFICER WHO ORDERED GUNFIGHT

Israel has demanded that Lebanon dismiss or put on trial the Lebanese Armed Forces officer who ordered his men to open fire on Israeli troops on the Israeli side of the border. Lebanese snipers shot one Israeli officer to death and severely wounded another. Israeli retaliation killed a few Lebanese troops and a journalist called over before the incident.

Israel has threatened to act on its own, if Lebanon, does not. Israel indicated it would not pull punches (IMRA, 8/9/10).

The UN was created to keep the peace.
 

TEL AVIV ACCOMMODATES MUSLIMS WORKERS FOR RAMADAN The Tel Aviv municipality reminded its departments of the legal requirement to accommodate Muslims workers during Ramadan. Muslim workers may arrive two hours later or leave two hours earlier, whichever suits their religious observance better (IMRA, 8/9/10).
 

WAS UNIFIL COMPLICIT IN LEBANESE AMBUSH OF ISRAELIS?

Here is a link
(http://hashmonean.com/2010/08/03/shields-were-unifil- forces-complicit-in-ambushing-idf/) to a site showing photographs of UNIFIL troops together with Lebanese Armed Forces troops aiming weapons at Israeli troops they could see were merely clearing a tree and posing no threat.

The question is raised whether UNIFIL was complicit in the ambush (sent by Barry Chamish, 8/9/10).

If not complicit, since the UN peacekeepers were present, and they later acknowledged that Israeli gardeners had not crossed the border into Lebanon, why didn't they say admit that the Lebanese had started the violation? Why didn't they say there was no cause for opening fire. Have they become collaborators with one party to the conflict, the Lebanese?
 

LEGAL EXPERTS: NO PALESTINIAN ARAB 'RIGHT OF RETURN'

Law professors Ruth Gavison and Yaffa Zilbershatz handed Israeli PM Netanyahu a paper explaining that there is no legal underpinning for the alleged "right of return" of descendants of Palestinian Arab refugees. If there were, they would have gone to court over it.

If Israel grants even a "symbolic" recognition of it, it opens the door to full recognition of it, massive lawsuits would be brought. The Jewish population in Israel would be swamped by an enemy population.

If, as some suggest, Israel offers the option with the "understanding" that it would not be implemented, it opens the door to a breach of the understanding. Arabs may choose entry into Israel no matter how much money they offered as compensation. Even if most Arabs did not choose to enter Israel now, their descendants might. The Jewish people would lose its self-determination. You see, the "return" may be brought up as part of peace negotiations, but once it were to be accorded as a "right," it would be independent of peace negotiations. A right is a right.

Incidentally, the territorial negotiations involve the war of 1967. That is a separate matter from the "return" issue, which involves the war of 1948. The refugee issue arose because the Arabs refused the partition plan proposed by the UN.

How does the world treat other refugee problems? The world wants disputes settled, rather than perpetuate problems by returning refugees to contested countries. Consider the recent ruling by the European Court of Human Rights. The court took up the matter of Greek refugees expelled from northern Cyprus in 1974. "...five months ago it ruled that due to the time that has passed, it would be wrong to rectify the situation by allowing them to return to their homes and expelling those who currently live in the area."

Some people ask why, if Jews can return to Israel after 2,000 years of exile, Arabs may not after only 60 years. Like many analogies and comparisons, the logic is flawed. Jews do not have such a right, the State of Israel legislated the privilege. Any Arab state could do the same for Arabs in its own state.

UNRWA retards Palestinian Arab assimilation and thus that type of solution. It holds that former refugees in Jordan, who obtained Jordanian citizenship, remain refugees. [Actually, Jordan is in Palestine, and other displaced ethnic groups are not considered refugees if they still are in their countries. People of other ethnic groups born abroad are no longer considered refugees. Why should Palestinian Arabs be treated differently?]

UNRWA upholds the refugee status of terrorists who commit crimes against humanity (Ariela Ringel Hoffman, Israel Resource News Agency, 8/8/10)
http://www.israelbehindthenews.com/bin/articles.cgi

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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A WEDDING PICTURE
Posted by Benami, August 9, 2010.

A very nice souvenir photograph of 24 newly wedded couples.

 



  I just hope for their sake that each husband will go home with the correct table cloth!

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LAMBS TO THE SLAUGHTER
Posted by Yeshayahu Hollander, August 9, 2010.
 

This is really serious. Islam accepts Christ. Judaism rejects Christ. So what could be more natural than showing love and tolerance between Christians and Muslims and ganging up against the Jews!

This below was written by William Kilpatrick, whose articles have appeared in FrontPage Magazine, First Things, Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Jihad Watch, World, and Investor's Business. It appeared today Front Page Magazine and is archived at
http://frontpagemag.com/2010/08/09/lambs-to-the-slaughter/

 

I used to scoff at writers such as Sam Harris, Kevin Phillips, and Chris Hedges when they warned that Christians were a major threat to American freedoms. Now, I'm not so sure. Of course, all their talk about Christians imposing a theocracy on America has about as much credibility as the "truther" theory that 9/11 was a U.S. government/Mossad conspiracy. But I wonder now if Christians, in their naivite and in their desire to be thought tolerant, aren't inadvertently paving the way for an eventual Islamic theocracy.

It seems that quite a number of Christian churches are now involved in "outreach" programs with local mosques. The typical outreach is for a church to invite an Islamic leader to come in and explain Islam to the congregation. Naturally, the imams present Islam as a religion of peace and love. And naturally in their desire to appear loving and accepting, the Christians lap it up. The imams know how to press all the "tolerance," "outreach," and "respect" buttons, and the result is that the Christians end up thinking Islam is just another nice, brotherly religion like their own. As a result, they can probably be counted on not to oppose the building of a local mosque, or for that matter not to oppose any Muslim agenda or initiative. Islamic leaders have done a good job of framing their grievances as civil rights issues, and this, of course, has great appeal to the many Christians who see the pursuit of social justice as their main mission. Mentally, many Christians still live in the days of "We Shall Overcome" and lunch counter sit-ins. They think that in supporting and defending Islam they are like the Christians in the sixties who linked arms with civil rights marchers, and sang hymns together.

Lately, Muslim leaders have been taking advantage of the Christian disposition for outreach by offering outreach programs of their own. 20,000 Dialogues is a nationwide interfaith initiative that helps local level imams set up outreach programs, and provides films and speakers to facilitate the dialogue. The current offering is a film titled "Inside Islam: What a Billion Muslims Think." The film is based on a study of Muslim attitudes conducted by John Esposito of Georgetown University's Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, and Dalia Mogahed, Director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies. Like the study, the film massages the polling data to make it appear that Islam is a predominately peaceful religion.

One such outreach was conducted on July 24th at the Lamb of God Church in Fort Myers, Florida. The guest speaker was Imam Shaker Elsayed of the Falls Church, Virginia mosque, "Dar Al Hijrah" — the same mosque where Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki mentored Major Nidal Hasan, the perpetrator of the Fort Hood massacre. Elsayed himself is the former Secretary General of the Muslim American Society, an organization which has been described by Stephen Schwartz as a "major component" of the "Wahhabi Lobby."

Aside from the dubious connections of the speaker and the dubious nature of the film, the most interesting aspect of the presentation was the response of the 400-member audience. With a few exceptions they liked it. And they didn't like the attempt by some members of ACT for America and the Florida Security Council who were present to ask tough questions during the Q&A session. Although Imam Elsayed portrayed Jesus in a way that should have been offensive to Christians, the audience was much more concerned with Muslim sensitivities. Their sympathies were obviously with the representatives of Islam, and against the critics of Islam.

The other interesting aspect of the presentation was the ability of Daniel Tutt, the young and articulate director of 20,000 Dialogues, to weave the critics' attempt to tell the other side of the story into his own narrative of "building bridges" and "avoiding stereotypes." Interviewed afterward by a TV reporter, Tutt said that the dissent "clearly emphasizes the need for more communications." In other words, those who criticize Islam misunderstand it and need to be educated. And how is Islam to be understood? Answer: in a positive way. "We feel," said Tutt, "that by reaching 20,000 dialogues we will help to create a measurable shift in the negative understanding that Americans have toward Muslims." The whole premise of the "dialogues" endeavor is that an unfavorable opinion of Islam is an uneducated opinion. This also seems to be the opinion of the Reverend Walter Fohs, the pastor of the Lamb of God Church. According to the Fort Myers News-Press, "Much of the hype, fostered in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, may be caused by Christians' lack of understanding of their own religion, said the Rev. Walter Fohs..." Fohs went on to say that there are more violent chapters in the Bible than in the Koran.

This moral equivalence argument sits well with many Christians because, like Americans in general, they have been nurtured on multicultural myths about the essential equality of different cultures and religions. So they are quite happy to nod in agreement when they are informed by the Islamic representative (or by their own pastor) that Islam is no more a threat than the synagogue down the street. For too many Christians, the essence of Christianity boils down to tolerance and non-judgmentalism. Moreover, Christianity in America has become so mixed up with therapy and pop psychology that, nowadays, the surest sign of election is feeling good about oneself. It is, of course, much easier to feel good about yourself if you can congratulate yourself on being tolerant, sensitive, and respectful of differences. It's likely that many of the Christians who attend outreach presentations like the one at Lamb of God Church aren't really interested in being educated about Islam. What they are really seeking is confirmation of their existing multicultural assumptions. So their sympathies will lie with those who tell them that it's reasonable to keep dreaming dreams of interfaith harmony, and they will resist those who want to wake them from the dream.

In regard to Islam most Christians can be placed in one of four categories. First, there is a small but growing number of congregations that do see the danger from Islam, and are trying to raise awareness. They are the ones who invite speakers such as Brigitte Gabriel, Nonie Darwish, or Mosab Hassan Yousef to explain the Islamic threat. On the other side of the spectrum is the religious left — the Christians who sign up for any cause that will hurt America and help its enemies. They can be found at every pro-Palestinian/anti-Israeli rally, and they can be counted on to actively enable stealth jihad. A third grouping is made up of liberal Christians, many of whom genuinely want to do "the Christian thing," but too often take their cues from the Christian left as to what that "thing" is. They are the ones most likely to extend invitations to Imams. The fourth group — if they can be called that — are the large majority of Christians who are so busy raising families and paying bills that they haven't had much time to think about the Islamic threat. They are, to paraphrase the inscription on the Statue of Liberty, "the muddled masses yearning to be free of complexities and inconveniences." For many of them, their faith is a personal, private affair, and they would much prefer to be busy organizing the church food drive or the vacation bible camp rather than be drawn into a debate on the "clash of civilizations." It would better suit their disposition if their pastor were to reassure them that there is no clash of civilizations, only a minor misunderstanding.

This emphasis on the personal nature of faith puts the fourth group at a distinct disadvantage vis-à-vis Islam — a religion which considers faith, not as a private matter but as a political battering ram. Pointing to the audience at the Lamb of God Church, Daniel Tutt observed, "In communities like this, these are the people who vote, these are the people who shift the agenda in this country about how Islam is understood." With his goal of initiating 20,000 dialogues, Tutt seems to believe he can shift the attitude of many in this fourth grouping.

Like their liberal brethren, the majority of Christians in the middle can be counted on to want to do "the Christian thing" when it comes to Islam. But what exactly is the Christian thing? In recent decades the notion has grown that the Christian approach is always one of acceptance, inclusiveness, and non-judgmentalism. In the long run that could prove to be a fatal idea because it constitutes one of the main obstacles to recognizing and resisting the threat from Islam. It's important, then, to call the idea into question. The simplest way to do this is to point out that, by contemporary standards, Christ could be both intolerant and judgmental — and this was especially true of his dealings with religious authorities. "What would Jesus do?" is a question that Christians often ask themselves. The question seems a bit presumptuous, because Christ's responses were rarely what people expected. In many cases we simply don't know the answer. But as to the question, "How would Christ respond to Islam and its official representatives?" there is considerable evidence that he would not be nearly as accepting as many contemporary Christians are. The evidence lies in his treatment of the Pharisees.

On numerous occasions Christ lashed into the Pharisees. He upbraided them for hypocrisy and iniquity, for laying burdensome rules on men's shoulders, for neglecting justice and mercy, and focusing instead on minor ritual observances, and for "teaching as doctrines the precepts of men." We tend to forget how little patience he had with them. He warned them, he insulted them, and on several occasions he provoked them. Even when the Pharisees asked what seemed to be reasonable questions, he often cut them short or rebuked them. They were "liars," "hypocrites," "blind guides," "whitewashed tombs...full of uncleanness," "serpents," "vipers," "children of hell," and worthy of "being sentenced to hell."

The point, of course, is that official Islam is far more pharisaical than the Pharisees ever were. And the pharisaism of Islam goes far beyond the ritual prayers, ritual cleansings, and the innumerable restrictions of Sharia law. Christ came to set men free; Muhammad came to inform them that they were slaves to Allah and, in effect, slaves to Islam. If Christ was hard on the Pharisees and Sadducees, would he be favorably disposed to Muslim apologists? If he thought the Pharisees were deceivers and hypocrites, what would he think of imams who say one thing in English, and something quite different in Arabic?

Once again, there is no certainty about "What would Jesus do?" but it does seem that the burden of proof is on those Christians who think that "the Christian thing" is to seek for common ground with Islam while overlooking its brutality and oppression. On one occasion the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery before Jesus. The law commanded that she be stoned. What did he have to say about it? His reply, of course, was not along the lines of, "I respect your diversity," or "There are many paths to God." He simply shamed them. Modern Christians, however, are more into sharing than shaming. As a consequence they prefer not to be reminded about the crimes of Islam.

Two thousand years into the Christian era, Sharia law still stipulates that a woman caught in adultery should be whipped or else stoned to death. Sharia law also punishes thieves with amputations, permits forced marriages of youngsters, winks at honor killings, treats women as the property of men, and mandates the death penalty for apostates. That is the kind of society you get once Islam becomes the dominant force. Do Christians want to be the ones responsible for smoothing the path of Sharia? Would that be the "Christian thing" to do? Islam stands for everything that the Civil Rights marchers marched against. In Muslim societies non-Muslims are not only considered inferior, they are considered unclean. Why would Christians want to march hand-in-hand — either literally or figuratively — with the official representatives of such a repressive system?

So it may be that Harris, Phillips, and Hedges will turn out to be right after all when they say that Christians pose a major threat to society — only it won't be for the reasons they adduce. The threat comes not from "Christian" militias and theocrats, but from all those well-meaning Christians who act as unwitting enablers for Islam — and, also, from their pastors. Shepherds are supposed to protect their sheep from wolves, but at the Lamb of God Church and places like it, the pastors are handing the lambs over to the wolves. "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves." (Mt. 7:15). It's an apt warning for our times. Unfortunately, too many Christians and their pastors live in a bucolic dreamworld where thoughts of wolves and false prophets are never entertained.

Contact Yeshayahu Hollander by email at yeshol@gmail.com.

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MOSQUE CONTROVERSIES OUTSIDE NYC; IRAN ANSWERS OBAMA CONCILLATORY NOTE WITH RECRIMINATION
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 8, 2010.
 

MOSQUE CONTROVERSIES OUTSIDE NEW YORK ARE DIFFERENT: 1: NEWS

Mosque controversies outside New York are different. Elsewhere in America opposition to the mosque is not about hallowed ground being the site. Objections are to mosques as the spearhead of a subversive movement.

Hundreds of people protested against a proposed mosque center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Smaller protests occurred over proposed mosques in Temecula, Calif., and Sheboygan, Mich.. There already are about 1,900 mosques in the U.S., but a reaction is setting in now.

Opposition to these mosques is not about traffic and noise, but to what is seen as their ultimate purpose: imposing Islam upon America. Objectors make no distinction between Radical and moderate Islam, contending that even seemingly assimilated Muslims want to replace the Constitution with Sharia, Islamic law. They quote from the Koran. They accuse Islam in general of being intolerant and violent. The issue has spread into politics, as has the New York controversy. The New York Times detects anti-immigration sentiment among the objections, but does not weigh that factor nor cite examples of it. Some protesters took dogs with them, to offend Muslims, who consider dogs ritually "unclean."

"These local skirmishes make clear that there is now widespread debate about whether the best way to uphold America's democratic values is to allow Muslims the same religious freedom enjoyed by other Americans or to pull away the welcome mat from a faith seen as a singular threat."

In defense of mosque-building, clergy from the traditional American faiths have organized larger, counter-demonstrations. Non-Muslim clergy affirm that Muslims have cooperated well with them.

In Temecula, Imam Mahmoud Harmoush testified that Muslim families there had contributed to the local food bank and to New Orleans relief and had participated in events with the local interfaith council. He said they did not get credit for that, but get notoriety over mosque plans.

Some of the notoriety comes from books and from the local chapter of ACT! For America, a purported defender of Western civilization. One protester described Islam as more a political movement to overtake our Constitution and whose members have a birth rate that she feels would help them overtake it.

At a fundraiser in Murfreesboro held by the evangelical Christians United for Israel, Nonie Darwish, head of Former Muslims United, contended that mosques are "...where war is started, where commandments to do jihad start, where incitements against non-Muslims occur. It's a place where ammunition was stored."

The Islamic Center of Murfreesboro spokeswoman, Camie Ayash, called the opposition dis-informed. She said that many Muslims immigrated because they respect the Constitution. If there were an Islamic conflict with it, they would not live here.

The owner of the site of the proposed Sheboygan mosque said that Muslims are going through the same period of nativist suspicion that earlier waves of immigrants experienced.

Some academics concluded from a study that mosques deter terrorism, as by sponsoring anti-violence programs and screening teachers and texts (Laurie Goodstein, NY Times, 8/8/10, A1).
 

MOSQUE CONTROVERSIES OUTSIDE NEW YORK ARE DIFFERENT: 2. BACKGROUND

This is not the venue for deciding this complex and confused issue. You must judge for yourselves. To assist you, here are some clarifications of the article and some considerations for perspective.

As you can see, joining this issue are people with mixed agendas, varying degrees of knowledge, and a different methods. The controversy gets confused and even mis-characterized. Let us identify the basic questions:

1. Is there an international jihad to impose Islamic law on the world?

2. If yes, what should America's response be to this war? How should the U.S. treat an imperialist and totalitarian movement that does so in the name of religion, without the U.S. losing freedom of religion?

3. Are the proposed mosques supportive of that jihad?

4. Suppose the proposed mosques all believe in non-violence. Does that mean they would not try to replace American culture and values with their own, buy non-violent means? Cannot jihad be on two tracks: (1) Military; (2) Preliminary softening up by propaganda, infiltrating universities, promoting excessive political correctness to paralyze freedom to criticize Islamic excesses, and lobbying?

5. Does the basic teaching of the main strains of Islam in the U.S. prepare the ground for radicalization, even if unintended?

6. How much do Muslims assimilate? Nativist suspicion of other immigrant groups was unfounded. Does that mean current suspicion of this one source of immigration also is unfounded?

Protesters undermine their case when they bring dogs to a mosque, deliberately to offend religious sensibilities.

The problem with academic studies these days is that many academics lack academic integrity. University Centers for Islamic Studies often are funded by Saudi Arabia and staffed by apologists for Islam. In contrast to the study cited, news reports in this column have shown that mosques attract terrorist recruiters. In itself, that may not be the fault of the mosque. The New York Times neglected to report, as this column did about the New York mosque, that about 80% of mosques in the U.S. are financed by Saudi Arabia, hire radical preachers, and take up the radical cause. If this situation were analyzed, one might conclude that the question is not mosques in general but who sponsors which ones.

The contention that Muslims move to Western countries because they like freedom is problematic. Many immigrants do move for freedom and prosperity. Others come to spread the faith, though there are Islamic theories of obeying the law as it is.

How much do Muslims assimilate? In France, the recent Muslim immigrants segregate themselves and increasingly keep non-Muslims out of their neighborhoods. In the U.S., Muslims have a higher standard of living and education than average. In the U.S. and in Britain, some Muslims born in the country become radicalized. How much of that constitutes a serious menace?

Just as the prior totalitarian, imperialistic movements of Nazism and Communism tried not to arouse opposition prematurely by admitting to their goals and instead professed a false desire for peace and justice, so does Radical Islam. The civic mindedness cited by Muslim communities as evidence of goodwill, may or may not be part of the deception authorized in defense of the faith. One has to dig deeper on that.

Likewise, the support given by non-Muslim clergy, citing inter-faith cooperation by Muslims, requires deeper investigation. As this column has documented about the New York mosque, the spokesmen for it talk about promoting tolerance, but the imam has promoted bigotry before. The spokesman promise not to accept funds from radicals, but the imam has been involved with radical funding and radical organizations, before.

A defender of the New York mosque said there is no reason to investigate the funding for the mosque before the funds arrive. Why does the project keep its prospective funding secret? Do the sponsors really not know where they are going to get about $100 million more, when they invest several million in purchasing the property? (For more on the NY issue, click here.)

Reaction to the mosque projects is in an early phase. Americans want to be tolerant, but rise up against those they think are intolerant of them. Thousands of Americans have gotten killed in the name of Islam. It is only natural to see the struggle coming into this country. The nub of the controversy is whether some Americans are over-generalizing about this and whether they can refine their concerns with more research and more specific concerns.
 

LEBANON SHIP OF WOMEN TO CHALLENGE ISRAELI MILITARY BLOCKADE OF GAZA

By way of Cyprus, another ship, containing only women, has left Israel's enemy state of Lebanon and is on its way to challenge the military embargo of Gaza.

The ship is named after the Virgin Mary. Some of the passengers are Christians, including a nun. One is visibly pregnant. To demonstrate their non-violent procedure, they say they will not have cooking knives aboard. But they are talking about violence, by mentioning having blood-testing equipment aboard in case Israeli sailors attack them and they need blood transfusions. [Israel, like the U.S., has top quality medical evacuation.]

Since there is no embargo on non-military goods reaching Gaza after having been inspected for military goods in Israel, this ship is just a provocation, said Israeli government spokesmen, Mark Regev. The purpose of the ship, then, is public relations, not humanitarian aid.

Turns out that the Mavi Marmara, the ship whose Islamists attacked Israeli sailors, did not carry humanitarian aid. Indeed, Hamas complained that the earlier ships had expired medicine and useless medical equipment (Arutz-7, 8/8/10).

It would be interesting if Israel enforced the embargo against that ship with female troops.

The passengers sound suspicious when they come prepared to have their blood spilled. Israeli troops intercepted a number of ships, but the only violence occurred on one ship and when Islamist passengers in organized units attacked the Israelis.

Remember the comments that only humanitarians were aboard the Mavi Marmara? Not only was there no need to run the blockade, when Israel offered use of its port, and not only did the flotilla carry goods that Gazan officials found could do more harm than good, but the Mavi Marmara did not carry humanitarian goods.
 

LEBANESE AGAIN CHALLENGE ISRAELI BORDER AND MILITARY

A Lebanese fishing vessel entered Israeli territorial waters at 4 a.m.. It disregarded Israeli naval orders to turn back. The Israelis fired warning shots. No injuries.

Lebanon called the incident an Israeli violation of the ceasefire. Then Lebanon reported an actual violation, Israeli planes flying over Baalbek.

The ship is the second time recently that Lebanon disputed the Israeli border. As we reported, Lebanese Armed Forces opened fire on Israeli lumberjacks within the Israeli border, as defined by the UN and as confirmed by UNIFIL.

In reaction, Israeli Defense Min. Barak urged the U.S. to stop furnishing the Lebanese Armed Forces with $100 million of arms. The State Dept. said that U.S. arms were not used in the incident and that its military subsidy of Lebanon helps stabilize the region.

Lebanese officials denounced Israel for this. They said that Lebanon could get other neighboring countries to provide it arms with which to challenge Israeli "aggression" (Arutz-7, 8/8/10). http://www.israelnationalnews.com/

So Israeli tree-pruning on its side of the border is aggression. And the Lebanese Armed Forces that shoots at the Israelis help stabilize the region. The U.S. seems to be caught in the old problem of its arming regional forces for its purposes, but those regional forces have other purposes that are destabilizing.

Whether the Lebanese Armed Forces used U.S. weapons for a particular act of aggression is besides the point. The point is whether the U.S. should equip an army that commits aggression. Lebanon appears back in the jihadist camp, which is not in the U.S. national interest.

The over-flights are for reconnaissance, since Hizbullah is violating the ceasefire by building up southern Lebanon militarily and the UN is not enforcing the ceasefire but studiously ignores Hizbullah violations and condemns Israeli overflights. The ceasefire apparently has no provision for resolving violations. Filing a complaint with UNIFIL, a procedure without results, seems to be all there is to do about violations.

Israel made the same mistake with the Oslo accords, in assuming there would be Palestinian Authority compliance instead of the ongoing, massive violations. This is another case of government action and regulation failing to resolve problems and making them worse by tying the government's hands.
 

IRAN ANSWERS OBAMA CONCILLATORY NOTE WITH RECRIMINATION

A few days after President Obama proposed talks with Iran, attempting to resolve their nuclear differences in a conciliatory way. Iran's President Ahmadinejad answered with recrimination.

Ahmadinejad contended that the 9/11 casualties were exaggerated, that "Zionists" were tipped off in advance, and that the exercise was a pretext for U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He incorrectly supported the claim of exaggeration by asserting that no list of names was published, but, of course, it was.

He also claimed that the Holocaust was fabricated to justify the creation of a Jewish state. The consensus among historians is that the Nazis' special project to murder the Jews of the countries Germany conquered took a toll of six million (IMRA, 8/8/10).

He should not find it difficult to believe the Holocaust occurred, since he and his allies seem to want to inflict another.

The Iranian rebuff of Obama's conciliatory gesture shows that they do not respect conciliation. They do not want to resolve issues peacefully and to mutual benefit. The same pattern, resulting in making further demands and waging Intifada, followed Israeli concessions and offers to the Palestinian Authority. It may be considered by Muslims an affront to be treated by non-believers as equals.

When Ahmadinejad refers to "Zionists," he probably means Jews. Not all Jews are Zionists. I knew one Jew who was not tipped off. He was my neighbor. I have heard of others. Too late to be considered news, an Israeli source related the story of an Israeli official, who told about his son, killed at the World Trade Center.

The notion of tipping off Jews has many flaws. The tip-off would give away the plot. Of hundreds of people notified, any would inform the police. How would Israel know whom to notify? Why would Israel take a chance on a devastating U.S. reaction, not to mention losing needed U.S. support? Israel had been urging the U.S. not to make war on Iraq; it considered Iran more dangerous. Since there was no known connection with Iraq, why would Israel suppose the U.S. would retaliate against Iraq? What about the stated reasons for the Iraq war?

Ahmadinejad defies the mountainous historical record of the Holocaust and the clear evidence of the thousands murdered on 9/11, including a proportionate number of Jews. His conspiracy theories render his testimony on anything suspect. Same goes for many of his allies.
 

SAUDI CLERIC PRAYS FOR DEATH OF EGYPT'S PRESIDENT

Kuwaiti MP Walid Al-Tabtabai, who participated in the recent flotilla, established "Freedom Flotilla TV." MEMRI has just translated the station's interview of Saudi cleric Muhammad Al-Arifi.

Al-Arifi contrasted poor countries taking in refugees fleeing death with Egypt's not letting Gaza residents into Egypt. He wonders why Egypt usually does not, but prays that Allah will either change Egyptian President Mubarak's policy or slay him (IMRA, 8/8/10 from MEMRI which has more documentation).

Al-Arifi might have stated that Israel had urged Israeli and Territorial Arabs not to flee from the wars of 1948 and 1967. Israel let some PLO men flee to it from a lost battle with Jordan years ago and more recently from a lost battle with Hamas. Israel has taken in hundreds of thousands of Jewish refugees and non-refugees, including ones from India and Ethiopia. It admitted some Vietnamese boat people. Israel also let back into the Territories many Palestinian Arabs expelled by Kuwait and Saudi Arabia for helping Saddam conquer Kuwait. It has admitted thousands of Africans, but being a tiny country, is trying to limit this.

Gaza residents are oppressed by Hamas rule. Many say they would like to leave, as have Arabs in Judea-Samaria, some of whom go to Jerusalem rather than stay in the Palestinian Authority. The Gaza Arabs do not flee for their lives, but when they were let into Egypt, they went shopping. Egypt has expressed concern that free passage from Gaza to Egypt would let terrorists operate in Egypt and that Palestinian Arabs who are not refugees nevertheless would stay in Egypt. In other news, today, Egypt reported capture of a terrorist cell in the Sinai, confirming validity to its concern.

(To view the full clip on MEMRI TV, click here. To view the MEMRI Guide to the Middle East Flotilla page, click here.)
 

SAUDI COLUMNIST: JIHAD INCLUDES WAR

Darfur refugees with water supplies (AP/Nasser Nasser)

Anas Zahed, a columnist for the Saudi government daily Al-Madina, asserts that Islam authorizes military jihad. He rejects the attempt by Muslim intellectuals to redefine "jihad" so as to mean only the personal struggle aspect.

He does describe military jihad as defensive. He states that it would be permissible to fight against occupation, ethnic cleansing, and religious coercion (IMRA, 8/8/10 from MEMRI).

In the U.S., some Muslims have described jihad only as a personal struggle by way of deception, to make jihad not seem a threat to America. The best known example was by a Muslim Harvard valedictorian.

The assertion that military jihad only is defensive conflicts with reality. The Arabs have described, and still describe their wars of aggression against Israel and their terrorism as defensive, and Israeli self-defense as aggression. The earlier totalitarian movements, Nazism and Communism, also described their aggression as justified against aggression. When Nazi Germany and the USSR jointly invaded Poland, they claimed that little Poland, having just horse-drawn cavalry, had attacked them. Absurd, but totalitarians offer excuses. The Soviet role in starting WWII is not well known.

The jihad in Sudan involves ethnic cleansing. Millions of blacks, including, more recently, Muslim blacks, were killed or chased out of their homes by Muslim Arabs. This was attested to by Charles Jacobs, who heads a slave rescue organization and by speakers at the Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam rally I reported a year ago.

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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NO TO ISLAMIC IMPERIALISM'S FASCIST MOSQUE
Posted by Paul Lademain, August 8, 2010.
 

Judith Miller either doesn't want to understand or hasn't yet educated herself to grasp that mosques are symbolic constructions built atop their vanquished enemies graves. Inasmuch as the US and rest of the Western Hemisphere isn't vanquished, it seems Judith Miller is what we are forced to classify as a knee-jerk contrarian. You oppose slavery? A knee-jerk contrarian will dig deep into his or her debate bag and pull out some lame counter-argument to assert that slavery is better than outright extermination. We wonder about people who do this. Why are they so prone to sever their ties to ethical principles. And we sadly conclude that they are inclined to espouse amorality because they are starved for attention. How better way to garner attention than to automatically and yowl opposition to whatever objective their opposition wants?

The mosque proposed for construction on the ashes of the innocents exterminated by the filthiest element of Islam must be banned. We read our Korans, and we studied Mao Tse Tung's Little Red Book as well as Mein Kampf and so we already know the connection between these three nauseating fascist screeds. And we learned all we need to know about Islam when the Egyptian pilot drove flight 990 into the Sea of Nantucket and our views against Sharia and our opposition to all those who support Islamic imperialism were set in stone on 9/11.

Allowing the construction of a mosque atop the graves of our own does NOT signify "toleration of other faiths" but rather the toleration of imperialistic aggression forcibly imposed by politicians in high places who are willfully-blind knee-jerking contrarians. The impression we get of NYC politicians is that there apparently are a clutch of wealthy NY Jews who seem willing to swallow insults to our nation in exchange for personal aggrandizement or commercial privileges of a nature about which we can only speculate. Curious minds want to know: Does Mayor Bloomberg get building permits granted to his operations in Dubai to thank him for supporting Islamic deceit? Will the Landmark Commission be allowed to lunch with Abdullah? Or rent luxury condos in Bahrain? Just asking. Americans will not stomach the construction of a mosque on the graves of our own, and should it ever be built, you can bet there will be a groundswell of voters who will ensure that it will be seized under the powers of eminent domain in order to convert this insulting, vulgar edifice into a YMCA for the use of all people of every race and religion. Especially Jews.

Viva to America and its sane citizenry from the SC4Z (Secular Christians for Zion)

This below appeared Aug 6, 2010 on Discover The Networks. It is called "Judith Miller, the 9-11 Triumphal Mosque, and Discover the Network's Taxonomic Flaw" and was written by Jeanette Pryor.

 

Discover the Networks is an emerging force to be reckoned with in serious political analysis. Its most significant contribution to public discourse? A system of classification of the species "americanus sinestra non-sapiens," the American Left. Instead of the ambiguous designation, "Liberal," David Horowitz and the DTN editorial team have developed precise terminology for the accurate sorting of America's leftists and their organizations.

In one of his most important articles, Defining the Left, David Horowitz explains the criteria that assigns one to particular slot on the revolutionary spectrum, as well as his motive for developing this system in the first place:

"If you visit the Individuals search page in DiscoverTheNetwork, you will see that we have separated the individuals into five columns, which we identify as "totalitarian radicals," "anti-American radicals," "leftists," "moderate leftists" and "affective leftists."

"In the conventional political lexicon of today, the term "moderate leftist" is equivalent to "liberal." We have not used this designation because part of the agenda of DiscoverTheNetwork is to challenge the use of the word "liberal" in this way, a way that obscures the network of the left...in order to escape accountability for the leftist past and in order to more easily advance their radical agendas in the American mainstream."

On August 3rd, Pulitzer Prize journalist, Judith Miller, provided a striking example of the one flaw, or potential danger Mr. Horowitz has identified with his own system.

Discussing NYC Mayor Bloomberg's efforts to facilitate the construction of a mosque three blocks from the 9-11 Islamic Crime Scene, Sean Hannity confronted Miller with her pro-mosque position in spite of pro-Sharia statements of the allegedly dovish Imam Abdul Rauf:

Hannity: Why don't his statements disturb you?

Miller: Because he claims they were taken out of context.

Hannity: Why are you not upset that he wants America to be Sharia-compliant?

Miller: Because I have friends who insist that he has spent his whole life fighting for a moderate Islam.

Hannity: Why won't he condemn Hamas?

Miller: Hamas is a terrorist organization and should be referred to as such.

Hannity: But, if he's a moderate, why won't he refuse to condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization?

Miller: I don't know.

Judith Miller would be considered an "affective leftist." Horowitz defines this form of Leftism:

"The term affective leftist requires some explanation, and I am grateful to my comrade-in-arms Peter Collier for the description that follows. "These are people who are often in positions of influence, the media in particular, who are bien pensant in the extreme. In spite of their social status, they see themselves 'in opposition' — a legacy from the 60s when the notion of 'The System' as a malign code word for America — was born. They are also involved in post-radical chic, glorifying people who 'authentically' represent oppositional ideas in a way they would not have the courage or really even the political inclination to do themselves. To these people, as opposed to serious leftists, political 'ideas' are the intellectual equivalent of a fashion statement."

Horowitz continues:

"On the other hand, there is an aspect of this revision that may lead to results that are not entirely positive and that may even support familiar delusions of the left, which function as fail-safe mechanisms for its complacency in the fact its regrettable record of the last fifty years."

"The progressive left supported freedom's Communist enemies in the Cold War...many progressives did so "critically," deploring the lack of freedoms in the Soviet bloc countries, while explaining this lack of freedom as the result of America's Cold War "aggressions" against the socialist world...These same leftists...were busily applauding the totalitarian camp for "restraining" American "imperialism."... when the Soviet system collapsed, they pretended not to have done what they had done or felt what they had felt. They washed their hands of "actually existing socialism" altogether, and accepted no responsibility for their complicity in its crimes."

"We have some concern that the attitudes reflected in this false innocence are encouraged by descriptions that distinguish factions of the left as in our new grid. We have created the categories of leftists who are neither anti-American radicals nor totalitarians as though this might absolve those who are not from their responsibilities for the consequences of their actions when they work in coalitions with radicals who are anti-American and totalitarian, and when they fail to reject them."

Judith Miller is a perfect example of the "affective Leftist" who will support Rauf after a shoddy inquiry that would shame a high-school newspaper intern.

She trusts Rauf because her friends told her he didn't mean what he said? The champion of peaceful Islam in America won't condemn Hamas and Judith has not conducted a single interview, listened to a sermon or article, or bothered to cross-check Rauf's associations?

Condescendingly casting the 9-11 Mosque as a test of our ideological loyalty to religious liberty, Miller instinctively supports it. She will ignore Rauf the Radical and condemn the intolerant Islamophobes. No one will accuse her of loving Hamas or favoring the dissolution of America as we know it. Miller will share responsibility for the honor killings, the homicide bombings, and the burned synagogues that will be inspired by the NYC 9-11 Islamic Jihad Memorial because, as Horowitz charged her anti-War Affective Leftist predecessors:

"The left in other words is not only a movement and perspective formed by its ideals and political hopes...the effect of their anti-war activities was to establish brutal police states in Cambodia and Vietnam that slaughtered masses of innocents."

Miller claims to support religious freedom and oppose "Islamophobia," but contributes, nonetheless, to establishing a brutal Sharia police-state that will slaughter masses of innocents, unless it is opposed by those sneered at by Miller and the Left.

Contact Paul Lademain by email at lademain@verizon.net.

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NEEDED: A JEWISH TEA PARTY
Posted by Justice for Jonathan Pollard, August 8, 2010.

It was written by Rabbi Steven Pruzansky and appeared August 4, 2010 in the Jewish Press
http://www.jewishpress.com/pageroute.do/44722.

Rabbi Steven Pruzansky is spiritual leader of Congregation Bnai Yeshurun of Teaneck, New Jersey, and author most recently of "Judges for Our Time: Contemporary Lessons from the Book of Shoftim" (Gefen, 2009). His writings and lectures can be found at www.Rabbipruzansky.com.

 

Among the bitterest aspects of the ancient tragedies commemorated during our recent national period of mourning was the crushing disappointment felt by the Jewish people when we were betrayed by our erstwhile allies: "I called for my friends [those who had professed love for me] but they deceived me" (Eicha 1:19).

Rashi comments that this refers to the infamous episode in which the Arabs, our putative cousins, distributed salty foods to the Babylonian exiles on their death march, and then offered flasks that contained nothing but air — and the Jews perished of thirst.

So, on whom can we rely in this world when times are tough for Jews but on each other, on the shared bonds of peoplehood? And therein lies the problem and one of the enigmas of the exile today.

Visiting the Chabad of Salt Lake City, I picked up a few pamphlets Chabad distributes about mitzvot, Shabbat, Jewish life — and one called "Love Your Fellow Jew," a primer on that most indispensable, definitive mitzvah. Its language is both instructive and inspirational:

Nothing has been as detrimental to the Jewish people as the modern idea that Judaism is a religion. If we are a religion, then some Jews are more Jewish, others less Jewish and many Jews not Jewish at all. It's a lie. We are all one. If one Jew stumbles, we all stumble with him. We are not a religion. We are a soul. A single soul radiating into many bodies, each ray shining forth on its unique mission, each body receiving the light according to its capacity. A healthy Jewish people is one big, caring family where each individual is concerned for the other as for his own self.

Clearly, this is not a universally shared perspective, as the pamphlet continues:

Some don't think that Jews should single out Jews for special treatment. We need to get down to reality and human nature: If someone ignores his own brother's needs, what's behind his kindness to others? First we learn to care for our own family, and then we can truly care for everyone else. There's another reason to start with your own fellow Jew: If we do not take care of our own, who will? Perhaps this is the secret of our survival: We are unique, for to this day, when one Jew hears of another's plight somewhere across the globe, he identifies with that Jew, feels his or her pain, and is moved to do whatever he can to help."

What beautiful sentiments, and the more I read, the more I wished they were true.

By coincidence, I read this on the same day the Russians extricated their ten spies from the United States by orchestrating an exchange within a week of their arrests, and I wondered to myself — again — what is wrong with the Jewish people? How is it that we sit with such equanimity while Jonathan Pollard now sits in prison for more than 9,000 days, and Gilad Shalit sits for more than four years in some dark abyss, absent without a trace?

Too many Jews say, "Well, Pollard was a spy who committed crimes, so he should sit. And Shalit, well, the government in order to free him has to find the right number of terrorist murderers to free to create more mayhem, so it is really up to us."

And many say, "Well, Sholom Rubashkin deserves 27 years in prison for bank fraud, and the desecration of God's name, and the like. And Israeli MIAs Zachary Baumol, Yehuda Katz and Tzvi Feldman can disappear into Syrian custody, and Ron Arad can evaporate off the face of the earth, and that's just the way it is. And Eli Cohen, the Syrians don't have to return his body for burial even 45 years after his execution, because " I'm not quite sure why.

We have a rationalization for everything, and I'm left to wonder: what is wrong with the Jewish soul? We pay lip service to ahavat Yisrael (love for our fellow Jew), but do we really believe it, or ever act upon it when it is personally inconvenient? The Russians extracted their spies in the blink of an eye; the Chinese community in the 1990s rallied around a Chinese-American spy and he was released after two years; a non-Jewish American naval officer named Michael Schwartz who spied for the Saudis in the 1990s was never even prosecuted, just court-martialed and dismissed.

Somehow, Japanese-Americans kept their unjust internment during World War II in the forefront of American consciousness, and blacks do not let anyone forget the slavery that ended a century and a half ago. Their communities rallied around, and rally around, any victim of perceived injustice. And where are we?

Rubashkin was sentenced to 27 years for defrauding a bank of $27 million dollars — more prison time than the prosecution even requested, and after they initially sought a life sentence. Yet Jeffrey Skilling, former president of Enron — which defrauded banks and investors of billions of dollars, and cost people 20,000 jobs plus their pensions — was sentenced to 24 years, less time than Rubashkin, and Skilling's sentence was just vacated on appeal, and he may be free in a relatively short time.

Bernie Ebbers (WorldCom) was convicted of defrauding investors of $100 billion dollars, and received less prison time than did Rubashkin. Dennis Kozlowski (Tyco) was convicted of stealing five times as much money (and pocketing it) than Rubashkin was accused of — and also received less jail time than Rubashkin. And most recently, Hassan Nemazee, an Iranian-American fundraiser for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, was sentenced to just 12 years in prison for defrauding banks of $292 million dollars, half the incarceration for more than ten times the fraud.

Granted, no two cases are identical, but the contrasts are still jarring. And one need not argue for the innocence of Pollard or Rubashkin to be outraged at the disproportionate sentences each received. How is this possible? Is there a Jewish surcharge? Do the courts increase a Jew's sentence because of the chillul Hashem involved? Where are we?

Further, why does Israel tolerate the kidnapping of its soldiers, and continue to provide Gilad Shalit's captors — the residents of Gaza who voted Hamas into power — with food and electricity? Has Israel insisted that Shalit be visited by the Red Cross, as is his right under international law, in exchange for those provisions? Has Israel verified that Shalit himself is a beneficiary of that same food and electricity? Jews bend over backward to be more moral — after all, who wants to be accused of collective punishment — but instead we are less moral, lacking even in elementary love for our own flesh and blood, our own people.

* * * * *

Whither our ahavat Yisrael? Maybe we don't really care as much as we say we do. Maybe in our drive not to be seen as parochial and overly concerned with only Jewish causes we have robbed ourselves of our natural instinct to help our own. All the hospitals and museums Jewish money provided for the general community have not bought any good will, at least not in the legal system. All the politicians we fund, and whose shoes we run to shine if only they will take a picture with us, surely must mock us behind our backs — because we don't take care of our own. We don't protest, we don't scream. We rely on platitudes and empty promises, and accomplish little for our own people in distress.

On a recent trip to Washington, I visited the Newseum, a fine museum dedicated to the history of journalism. The museum screened a documentary titled "The Media and the Holocaust," describing in great and painful detail the "paltry, embarrassing coverage" (Abe Rosenthal's words) of the Holocaust by the American news media, especially The New York Times.

It is not that the Holocaust wasn't covered — it was. The New York Times alone ran 1,100 Holocaust-related stories during that era — but almost all were buried on the inside pages.

Item one: a tiny story on page 6 in July 1942 reports that "700,000 Jews have been murdered." That same day's newspaper devoted a lengthy page-one article to New York Governor Lehman's decision to donate his tennis shoes to the war effort.

Item two: an April 1943 report on the Warsaw Ghetto uprising — a cover story — failed to mention that the insurgents were Jews; they were described only as Poles.

Item three: The Times reported in July 1943 on the death of "350,000 Jews" in a little blurb on page 5. The front page that same day contained a long piece on the July 4 traffic.

Holocaust scholar Michael Berenbaum said the disgrace was that the media reported that "A million Jews have been killed," when they should have shouted — in 16-point type — "A MILLION JEWS HAVE BEEN KILLED!" They did not scream when they should have. We too do not protest or scream or get angry or threaten to turn off the spigot of financial contributions Jews make to (usually Democratic) politicians. We will occasionally have a very tepid demonstration, addressed by the same array of politicians and professional Jewish leaders with predictable speeches that send everyone home thinking something has been accomplished. How many Jewish leaders who meet with President Obama ask about Pollard? How many leaders who met with Prime Minister Netanyahu recently asked him if he requested Pollard's release?

We look back with disdain at the apathy of American Jews during the Holocaust. Granted, this is not the Holocaust — but have we really improved that much? I don't see how we are any better. Our excuses are more clever and articulate, and sound more reasonable — but our devotion to the preservation and well-being of every Jew still needs enhancement. We are often told our leaders have bigger fish to fry; but human beings are not fish. "I have called for my friends, and they have deceived me." Will that be Pollard's legacy, and Shalit's, and others?

According to our Sages, the Second Temple was derstroyed due to the baseless hatred prevalent among the Jewish people. And perhaps if we cannot find it in our hearts to protest every injustice against a Jew and to instinctively defend every Jew, we are presently unworthy of redemption.

There is a fine line between being so provincial and insular that we are indifferent to others — and being so cosmopolitan, so universal, that we are effectively indifferent to our own. In the not-too-distant past, Jews changed their names and noses in order to curry favor with our neighbors; now, they merely have to disconnect from other Jews and identify with the cosmopolitans, and some even with our enemies.

For too long, we have so feared being stigmatized as narrow-minded that we have become too judgmental and unforgiving towards our own people. But in reality, there is no stigma. Every group naturally takes care of its own before others — whether Americans or Russians, whether Muslims or blacks. That is natural. We have become unnatural, and many Jews are emotionally estranged from our own people.

We can — and should — condemn crime and criminals (and ostracize those who have intentionally harmed Jews), but that does not mean we also have to accept double standards and abandon our own when unjust punishment is meted out. We do not have to tolerate that Jewish prisoners of war never survive the experience, and are held incommunicado in gross violation of the rules of war. We do not have to tolerate the cruel and heartless treatment of them by our enemies (enemies that are otherwise celebrated by the civilized world) that is their now customary fate, and negotiate with them as if they are decent, respectable people.

We have to get angry, in a positive and constructive way. We have to take our inspiration from the Tea Party that is trying to transform the American political culture from the grassroots, because the elitists of both parties have not been responsive.

We need a Jewish Tea Party that can reflect the voice of the average, simple Jew who loves Jews and loves justice, and is ill-disposed to making the crass political calculations that sacrifice human beings on the altar of expediency.

Israel is not a powerless country. An Israel that even feigns anger for the sake of Jewish life — and demands to know the fate of Katz, Baumol, Feldman, Arad, Pollard, Shalit and others — can achieve surprising results. We need to bolster the sense of unconditional love that always emerges during crises, and join together to advocate for Pollard and Rubashkin, for Shalit and Arad, and not simply each sub-group for its own. Ahavat Yisrael is a difficult mitzvah, but it is a mitzvah nonetheless. Now is the time.

When we have self-respect, others will respect us. When we are fearless, others will fear us. When every day we pray for suffering Jews and envision ways to liberate them from their afflictions, when we hold our politicians and leaders accountable rather than sit silently as they take our money while acquiescing in the demeaning of Jewish life, when we show that Jewish blood is not cheap and Jewish life is precious, we will be a people worthy of redemption and the restoration of God's kingdom on earth.

Reach Justice for Jonathan Pollard by sending an email to justice4jp@gmail.com

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KOFI   ANNAN'S HOLOCAUST PROBLEM
Posted by Moshe Phillips, August 7, 2010.
 

In June a shockingly disturbing article about Holocaust education appeared in The New York Times online and The International Herald Tribune and was written by Kofi Annan, the former Secretary General of the United Nations. Annan questions the value of teaching about the Holocaust in the first place and deletes the memory of the Jewish victims from the Holocaust — not mentioning Jews one time.

Annan wrote:

"it is surprisingly hard to find education programs that have clearly succeeded..." He then linked Holocaust education to other events. Annan declared that Holocaust education has failed to prevent genocidal campaigns "from Cambodia to the Congo, from Bosnia to Rwanda, from Sri Lanka to Sudan."

Can Annan be blind to the fact that his beloved U.N. bears the largest portion of international blame for failing to prevent these post-World War Two tragedies?

Annan also wrote that "few teachers in any country have the knowledge or skills to teach the Holocaust in a way that would enable today's adolescents ... to relate.."

Here Annan missed the fact that Holocaust education has worked very well in Israel. As a direct result of that education process all Jewish Israelis, regardless of age, level of religious observance, political views or ethnic background, are completely united in their full support of their government to take whatever means necessary to stop Iran's deployment of a nuclear weapons program.

Perhaps almost as shocking as Annan's sudden attack on Holocaust education is the text of the article itself. Annan does not mention Jews or Judaism even once in nearly 800 words. Germany and Hitler are not mentioned either. See
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/18/opinion/18iht- edannan.html?_r=1 for the entire article.

Annan has the chutzpah to conclude his screed with a veritable love note to Austria. He states "and it seems fitting that Austria — which provided both victims and perpetrators of Nazi atrocities in abundance — should be hosting a (Holocaust teacher training) program."

Here Annan totally misses the ironic fact that Austria is the one nation in the post-World War Two period to elect a head of state that was accused of Nazi war crimes, Kurt Waldheim. Obviously Annan is familiar with Waldheim's case. The two were colleagues at the U.N. and Waldheim preceded Annan in the Secretary General position there. That Annan failed to ever investigate Waldheim's history at the U.N. is just one of in a long career of incompetence. To this day he official U.N. online biography of Waldheim ignores World War Two and the Holocaust entirely. See
http://www.un.org/Overview/SG/sg4bio.html.

Is this essay by Annan an isolated incident or does he have a track record of inappropriate action in regard to preserving the history of Holocaust?

Annan claims in this article that he supported Holocaust education in 2005 when as U.N. Secretary General he "urged the General Assembly to pass a resolution on Holocaust Remembrance."

However, remarks made at the time the Holocaust Remembrance resolution was passed also ignore the connection of the Holocaust to the Jewish People. A November 1, 2005 "Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on General Assembly Resolution on Holocaust Remembrance" was 107 words. There is no reference to Jews.
www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2005/sgsm10197.doc.htm.

The official UN news article from November 1, 2005 failed to mention Jews at all. See
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp? NewsID=16431&Cr=holocaust&Cr1.

It is worth recalling that not a single Muslim nation other than Turkey supported the Holocaust Remembrance Resolution. Can one imagine that happening now? Annan apparently could not have cared less about the Resolution at the time. Annan was either unable or unwilling to see to it that his native Ghana supported the Resolution either. He gave a speech of over 780 words the night the Resolution was passed at the "King Hussein Foundation inaugural peace-builders dinner." There was not a single remembrance" of the Holocaust included in Annan's remarks.

One more aside: Ninety countries supported the Resolution, but not one "moderate Islamic Arab" country such as Egypt, Morocco or King Hussein's Jordan signed on. Well before 2005 Egypt, Morocco and Jordan had all signed peace agreements with Israel. Just what kind of peace does Israel have with these nations if they refuse to acknowledge that the Holocaust needs to be remembered? And that is even with the fact that the actual wording of the original resolution itself mentioned Jews just once in an over 500 word text:

Reaffirming that the Holocaust, which resulted in the murder of one third of the Jewish people along with countless members of other minorities, will forever be a warning to all people of the dangers of hatred, bigotry, racism and prejudice...

Given the fact that Holocaust deniers often argue that less than six million Jews were murdered during World War Two, was it just a coincidence that the term "six million" was not used? See
http://www.unclef.com/holocaustremembrance/ docs/res607.shtml.

Annan is often considered to have been a fair arbiter in the Israel-Arab conflict. This is a naïve reading of Annan's track record and his professional alliances. As the maxim states: A man is known by the company he keeps.

Annan's longtime colleagues in the self-appointed (and self-righteous) group of elites called The Elders that is funded in part by the United Nations Foundation. The Elders seem like a rogue's gallery of Israel's harshest critics. Included as part of The Elders are Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter and Mary Robinson. For more on Mary Robinson see
http://frontpagemag.com/2010/06/21/allied-in- anti-semitism-%E2%80%93-the-irish-connection/.

In the post Annan era the way the U.N. has related to the Jewish People and the Holocaust has worsened considerably.

One example is that Ban Ki-moon's 2010 official statement on Holocaust Remembrance Day did not mention Jews.

Another example is the honors that Holocaust denier Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (who sponsored the December 2006 International Conference to Review the Global Vision of the Holocaust) received at the U.N. in September 2007. Annan and Ban Ki-moon have repeatedly worked to keep Ahmadinejad from being marginalized. Ban Ki-moon stated on December 14, 2006:

(D)enying historical facts, especially such a very important historical fact as the Holocaust, is not acceptable. It is not acceptable. United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan himself visited Iran and had a series of dialogues with the Iranian leadership and other senior-level people. Wherever and when, and if the situation requires me to do, I am also prepared to engage in dialogue with the Iranian leadership."

In the full version of his December 14 remarks, Ban Ki-moon again avoided any mention of Jews. See
http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2006/ sg2120.doc.htm.

Still another recent example is the controversy that erupted when Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann was the President of the 63rd session of the United Nations General Assembly from September 2008 to September 2009. Brockmann compared Israel's treatment of Gazans to Nazi atrocities against Jews. See
www.haaretz.com/news/host-of-un-holocaust-memorial- skips-event-after-u-s-jews-threaten-walk-out-1.268965.

Brockmann's successor as General Assembly President, a Libyan (!) diplomat named Ali Abdussalam Treki, stated that Israel's Gaza blockade "is worse than the camps of the Nazis in the past." And this was weeks before the Flotilla episode. See
http://www.memritv.org/clip_transcript/en/2460.htm.

The next person in line for the presidency is Switzerland's Joseph Deiss. Deiss is a longtime critic of Israel. In 2001 when he was Switzerland's Foreign Minister, Deiss met with Yasser Arafat's aides and condemned Israel for settlement activity and "a blockade of Palestinian areas."

Annan's attack on Holocaust education was published just as the U.N. was generating headlines for condemning Israel for the Gaza Flotilla episode. What was behind the timing of this article?

The Israel bashers do not want to give up the powerful imagery of the Holocaust so they transform it and remove the Jews. This allows The Elders and others to recast the Gazans as victims and the Israelis as the war criminals. This is especially outrageous when one recalls that the father of modern Arab anti-Jewish violence was Mohammad Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem from 1921-1948. He was an important ally of the Nazis and helped recruit thousands of Muslims for Waffen SS units in Bosnia.

And so, what is there to learn from Kofi Annan's Holocaust problem and the U.N.? Over the last several years it has been popular to speak about nations that are in internal disarray as "failed states." It is now past time to declare the U.N. a "failed institution." If the U.N. cannot be reformed it must be marginalized. And the sooner, the better. Moreover, the U.N. controlled Quartet on the Middle East project and led by Special Envoy Tony Blair must be re-evaluated given the U.N.'s Holocaust problem and its funding of The Elders.

"If we keep doing what we're doing, we're going to keep getting what we're getting," says Stephen Covey. If we fail to reform the U.N. these outrages won't just continue, they will get worse.

"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. Moshe's blog can be found at
http://phillyafsi.blogtownhall.com and he tweets at
http://twitter.com/MoshePhillips."

This article appeared originally in American Thinker:
www.americanthinker.com/2010/07/ kofi_annans_holocaust_problem.html

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THE ROOT OF THE ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT
Posted by Zeev Shemer, August 7, 2010.
 

What exactly is the Arab-Israeli conflict? What is it about? Who is to blame? How will it ever be resolved? These are basic questions that touch upon the most important political arena the world has known since the end of the Second World War. And that is one very big statement, after all, the 'atrocities' that have occurred or are alleged to have occurred in Israel are shadowed by the thousands of killings of innocents in Somalia, Rwanda, Sudan, Korea, Serbia, and China to name a few. So what makes this particular conflict so outstanding? I would dare say, that the Arab-Israeli conflict is not about land, politics, or even historical legitimacy, but rather, it is rooted in a much more encompassing issue; it is the battle between Islam and Judaism.

If Judaism triumphs, then Christianity may potentially see itself in trouble, after all, how can they explain to their followers that Christians are the new chosen people if the original chosen people somehow is still around? If Judaism prevails, it delegitimizes both Christianity and Islam, which claim to be perfected offshoots of what the Jewish people were originally meant to be, but had miserably failed at attaining. Now, after 2,000 years of exile, this downtrodden people, have risen to levels never seen before. Israel is a leading country in technology, medicine, literacy, all proof that God still maintains a relationship with them. There cannot be two 'chosen peoples', and that is why this conflict, is the most intensely watched, cared for, involved and complex battle scene on planet earth.

So again, I ask, what is this conflict really all about? There are many answers to this question, but ultimately there are two unique points of view on this matter: The Jewish point of view and the Muslim point of view. You must understand however that not every Jew subscribes to the Jewish point of view, and not every Muslim agrees with the Islamist take on the issues.

It is my contention that Israel's worst enemies are by far Jewish 'unJews'; these are Jews known for their self-hatred and who express loudly and sometimes violently their contempt against Israel. The reasons for this seemingly pathological inclination are complex, and possibly have more to do with their rejection of traditional Judaism than their 'passionate quest for justice' and the support of the Palestinian cause.

At the same time, not all Arabs agree with the Muslim contention that Israel has no right to exist. Many Arabs are Christians, and most certainly do not accept the Islamists' point of view. Many of the people incorrectly branded as Arabs, are actually Druze or Kurds, and most would also disagree with the anti-Israel stand of the majority of the Muslim nations of the world. Furthermore, many Israeli-Arabs, although Muslim by faith, see themselves as regular Israeli citizens and do not identify with the Palestinian people or their cause. Don't get me wrong, those Arabs who enjoy the benefits of Israeli citizenship and still view themselves as Palestinians, are not simply people with a difference of opinion, they are Israel's enemies. Our political leaders however, are experts at ignoring this obvious truth.

To better understand what the Arab-Israeli conflict is all about we need to define the terms, define the players and look at the Middle East with a clear historical perspective. Watching CNN or the BBC will certainly not provide any intelligent human being with an objective picture of the real issues that have been inflaming the seemingly endless conflict in the Middle East.

The reality at play is far more complicated than what we are being fed by both the world media and the majority of the world's academia. Joseph Goebles[1] once said "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." Goebles' motivation was his deep-seated hatred of the Jewish people, and there is a chilling relation between today's accusers and those who mastered the art of propaganda and mass brainwashing.  

[1] Dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels (1897 — 1945) was Adolf Hitler's Propaganda Minister in Nazi Germany. He also served as Chancellor for one day, following Hitler's death. He was known for his zealous and energetic oratory and virulent anti-Semitism.

Ze'ev Shemer is the author of "Israel and the Palestinian Nightmare", "Stories, Myths and Lies, Does Religion Really matter?", "From the Ashes of Deir Yassin", and several articles that have appeared in periodicals and Internet news sites. Ze'ev teaches English and Social Studies and lives in Ramat HaGolan with his wife and children.

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THWART MUSLIM LAND GRAB IN JERUSALEM; ARAB TERRORISTS TRY TO KIDNAP JEWS IN JUDEA-SAMARIA
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 7, 2010.
 

THWART MUSLIM LAND GRAB IN JERUSALEM

Jerusalem municipal authorities thwarted a Muslim land grab in Jerusalem.

A Muslim cemetery adjoins Independence Park in central Jerusalem. Muslims put phony tombs at the edge of the park, as if the old cemetery had been encroached on by the park. The conspiracy was an attempt to encroach on the park. Apparently, the Muslim Waqf then would have applied for an extension of its land ownership over that section of the park.

No graves were below the dozens of tombs (Arutz-7, 8/6/10).

That is the whole report. The report did not indicate who were the conspirators.
 

PAKISTAN FLOODS: GOVERNMENT FAILURE, ISLAMIST SUCCESS, U.S. INVISIBILITY

Flood-ravaged house in Punjab (Getty/Daniel Berehulak)

The floods that harmed millions of Pakistanis highlight government failure and Islamist success.

Millions flooded out in the major province of Punjab, need relief. The government was caught unprepared and has little presence on the scene. Islamist charities were prepared and have a major presence on the scene.

These Islamist charities are wings of movements that include political wings and terrorist militias such as Lashkar-e-Taiba. When they donate food and shelter, they advise beneficiaries not to trust the government or its Western allies.

The government is providing some shelters, but under poor conditions. The country depends on foreign relief efforts. Channeled through Pakistani agencies, American aid does not get much visibility and credit.

Experience with the flood and the first responders has eroded government popularity and boosted Islamist popularity. With their new-found goodwill, the Islamist militias are able to recruit more members (Adam B. Ellick, Pir Zubair Shah, New York Times, 8/7/10, A1).

This is an example of charity serving as an arm of terrorism. This story demonstrates the inseparability of non-military and military wings of terrorist movements. The charity is a tool of jihad.

Questions: (1) Why do governments that Islamists no longer let get away with failure to serve the people, continue to neglect the people? (2) Can these governments be helped in becoming efficient at public service? (3) Are there lessons for the U.S. in whom it allies with and how it assists? (4) How come the Islamists have the funds for charities and madrassas that the government does not? (5) Is the government diverting the needed funds to face off India, in a struggle started by Pakistan and maintained by terrorism against India India? (6) Why does a government now trying to preserve itself from terrorism still promote terrorism?

American charities help everywhere they can, including in countries where the U.S. is not doing it for some self-serving end.
 

ARAB TERRORISTS TRY TO KIDNAP JEWS IN JUDEA-SAMARIA

Arab terrorists have been trying to kidnap Jews in Judea-Samaria. Hamas headquarters encourages this. So far, Israeli security forces have thwarted the attempts and plots.

Israeli military experts believe that the terrorists plan to kill abducted persons immediately but hint that they are alive. Then the terrorists would negotiate for the victims' release (Arutz-7, 8/6/10).

Israelis have criticized their government for making lopsided prisoner exchanges, including for dead prisoners. The critics thought this likely to free terrorists to murder more Israelis than the number of Israelis freed. They were right. The critics also thought the lopsided exchanges likely to motivate terrorists to kidnap more people. This is occurring. Hamas has more or less admitted it.

The terrorist goal is to impose an oppressive version of their religion on everybody. Even if that goal had some justification, terrorism has none. Terrorism is a crime against humanity. In an attempt to justify that goal, people allege a lack of alternatives. But there are alternatives. One can negotiate for peace, as the PLO had pledged to do. One can behave in a civilized manner. Therefore, Westerners who condone the Palestinian Arab cause or fail to oppose their criminal methods become enablers, i.e. accomplices.

Some critics try to justify Muslim terrorist criminality by concocting a false history of Zionism as imperialistic and ethnic cleansing. Zionism was idealistic, sharing, and chose land purchase rather than seizure. But the Arabs tried to drive them out.

A similar false narrative posits the area as an Arab homeland. Read the Palestine Mandate, in which the League of Nations and, later by endorsement, the UN recognized the area as the Jewish homeland. There never was an Arab country there. Arab imperialists had ruled the area for a couple of hundred years, hundreds of years ago. Most Arab families entered shortly after the Zionists started rebuilding.

Some critics go on to falsely describe not only Zionism but also Judaism, and along racial lines. It gets silly, as well as willfully ignorant, when they claim that one can be a Jew only genetically (and without calling gentiles having Jews' genes Jews).

One critic imputes beliefs to me I have not indicated, but make convenient straw men. He also holds to wild conspiracy theories and the false assumption that one can judge a child's ideology's by his parents'. Since Rahm Emanuel's parents were Zionists, the critic assumes that Rahm is, too. Actually, and this was confirmed to me by a friend of Rahm's, Rahm is radical. Rahm has helped Obama to make many unilateral demands and condemnation of Israel, while ignoring real Palestinian Authority bellicosity, until the Administration went so far as to make its bias obvious and odious. But the critic will say anything to smear. So he calls Rahm Immanuel an example of "Israeli infiltration" of the U.S. government. (The critic never heard of "court Jews" and Jewish radicals?) Read some critics' comments long enough, and out comes racism, paranoia, and demonstrable defamation.

One way to evaluate criticism is to see whether a critic refutes the reports here. Does he ignore the horrors reported? Does he rationalize with false claims that the other side does likewise, as if two wrongs make a right?

Observe critics who claim to be concerned about Arab rights, and who claim that those they criticize do not. When a reporter contradicts them, and shows Muslims abusing other Muslims, the critics express no concern for the abused Muslims. Then ask how sincere are the critics' professed concern for abused Muslims. That kind of anti-Zionism boils down to antisemitism, not the professed humanitarianism. True humanitarians do not condone terrorism.
 

RADICAL ISLAM BECOMING POLITICAL LIABILITY IN U.S.

Radical Islam is becoming a political liability in U.S. politics. It has been taking time for Americans to become informed rather than politically correct. But now politicians are refusing donations from Radical Muslim organizations or making an issue of those who accept them.

For example, GOP congressional candidate Kelvin Calvey of Oklahoma refused a contribution from the executive director of the Council of American-Islamic Relations, because it is link). Why? Because Calvey has taken the time to educate himself about the group's history, "an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial, in which five defendants — including an original board member of CAIR's Texas chapter — were convicted of funneling money to Hamas." Mr. Calvey likened CAIR morally to the KKK.

CAIR executive director Razi Hashmi tried to dismiss the criticism as being anti-Muslim. Such dismissals are wearing out their welcome.

In Pennsylvania, Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, Rep. Joe Sestak is being criticized by Arlen Spector for having hired a local CAIR leader as his own aide and for speaking at a CAIR fundraiser in 2007.

Ads explaining CAIR role as, what the FBI calls a Hamas terrorist front, will rev up the anti-Radical outlook of Americans (David J. Rusin, Islamist Watch, 8/6/10).

It may be unfair to blame Rep. Sestak for ignorance of three years ago, when more people knew less. But he was one of our leaders, and should have known better. On the other hand, he now defends his past mistake. Criticizing this may be somewhat unfair, too, because voters do not forgive politicians who admit having made mistakes.

Since Mr. Calvey objected only to a Radical Islamic organization whose leaders have been involved in supporting terrorism, it is unfair to accuse him on that basis of being anti-Muslim. The accusation appears to be a reflex and defamatory.
 

DENMARK PROSECUTING FREE SPEECH ADVOCATE AS DISSEMINATOR OF HATRED OF ISLAM

Denmark is prosecuting free speech advocate Lars Hedegaard, president of the International Free Press Association (IFPA). IFPA claims its only interest is in freedom of expression.

Mr. Hedegaard had made some controversial remarks, since "clarified," about Islamic permissiveness about child abuse and bearing false witness and about its intolerance of criticism and apostasy.

Although Denmark's Constitution forbids censorship, its statute threatens a two-year prison sentence for "expressing and spreading racial hatred." A Danish legislator is facing charges for stating starkly that "Muslims kill their daughters over crimes of honour and turn a blind eye while they are raped by their uncles."

Danish "integration consultant" Mohammad Rafiq praised the prosecution of Mr. Hedegaard as a "victory for integration." Mr. Rafiq's prior attempt to repress Hedegaard's activism confirms "Hedegaard's point that Islam seeks to silence its critics."

Following the indictment, Denmark's Justice Minister, Lars Barfoed, started a review of Danish law to prevent laws against racism being exploited to repress political expression (Nathaniel Sugarman, Middle East Forum news, 8/6/10).

Some of these statements against oppressive aspects of Islamic ideology are put in needlessly inflammatory language. But they are factual. Truth in the U.S. has always been a defense against libel suits. Freedom of thought is paramount.

The statements did not attempt to promote hatred but to oppose bigotry. The way Denmark applies its law is to silence opposition to bigotry is itself bigoted.

Is the law enforced equally? Has it ever been enforced against Radical imams? Does the Danish government investigate the source of the mind-set that has prompted Muslims in Denmark to attack non-believers?

Abuse of freedom could be handed by suits for slander and by counter-argument. Western societies are not likely to let slander of Islam go unchallenged.

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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AMERICAN MISSIONARIES GUNNED DOWN FOR 'PREACHING CHRISTIANITY'
Posted by Ralph Rubinek, August 7, 2010.
 

Christians murdered for helping others even if they are Muslim.

Where is the outrage?

Where is Bloomberg now?

Why are Muslim groups so quiet when "infidels" are slaughtered?

Why is Bloomberg indirectly and perhaps directly supporting terrorism by allowing structures to be constructed on American soil by forces which clearly are affronted by our Christian society?

I have a proposal for the liberals... If the WTC Mosque is truly an expression of tolerance then why can't we determine where the funding is coming from?

Why are liberals so silent when it comes to transgressions against Americans abroad? Why do liberals only blame America and Israel?

If the money for the WTC Mosque is coming from outside America, then determine which country. There we can construct a Museum of tolerance manned by every faith, including atheists.

Anybody against this modest proposal?

And if so why?

Ralph

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LETTER TO THE GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE METHODIST CHURCH
Posted by Albert Wendroff, August 6, 2010.

From Anthony Rom:

Subject: Superb email sent to the Methodists regarding their call for Israel boycott — Forwarding an email sent to the Methodist Church by Gerald Oberman regarding their call for a boycott of goods from "illegal Israeli settlements".

 

From: Gerald Oberman

To: The General Secretary of the Methodist Church and Connexial Team.

Dear Sir,

In your annual conference you have passed a policy calling for a boycott of goods from "illegal" Israeli West Bank settlements".

You claim this is not anti-Semitic. But how else do you explain this strange obsession with Israel? What about the Chinese occupation of Tibet, or the Sudanese slaughter in Darfur, persecution in Zimbabwe and elsewhere?

Politically, one could probably compile a case for a boycott against just about every country on the planet, but the only country in the world being subjected to a call for a boycott is Israel.

The so-called West Bank has been Jewish for more than 3000 years. A large part was known as Judea. Jesus, a Jew, was born there. Who do you imagine lived in Judea, if not the Jews? Who lived in Hebron but the Hebrews? The name Bethlehem is Hebrew. Only the Jews, of all the people in the world, living in their own land, are besmirched by being called illegal settlers.

Israel is monstrously depicted as Apartheid, notwithstanding the fact that one fifth of her population is Israeli Arab with full rights. The Palestinians claim the West Bank as theirs and require the land to be Juden Frei.

And just who are the "Palestinians"? Palestine has never existed as an autonomous entity. There is no language known as Palestinian. There is no distinct Palestinian culture. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Palestinians. There has never been a King of Palestine. Palestinians are Arabs, indistinguishable from Jordanians, Syrians, Lebanese, Iraqis, etc. The "Palestinian" leader Yasser Arafat was an Egyptian. They have no claim on the West Bank. Israel is not wrongfully "occupying" or "settling" anything.

Israel is currently the subject of a demonisation and misinformation campaign put out by Arab sources and propelled with a strong anti-Semitic undercurrent. The Arab world is spewing out anti-Semitism unequalled since the Hitler era. It is so pervasive, many Jews are being infected Israel is portrayed as the most evil state on the planet.

Why are you so obsessed with Israel, yet say nothing about the persecution of Christians? According to Justus Reid Weiner, an international human rights lawyer, the dwindling Christian communities in Palestinian-run territories are likely to dissipate completely within the next 15 years as a result of increasing Palestinian maltreatment: "The systematic persecution of Christian Arabs living in Palestinian areas is being met with nearly total silence by the international community, human rights activists, and the media".

Your boycott of Israeli "settlements" is, of course, the prelude to a boycott of all Israel. I trust you are preparing a complete boycott of everything coming out of Israel. Check all your medications. An Israeli company has developed a simple blood test that distinguishes between mild and more severe cases of Multiple Sclerosis. So, if you know anyone suffering from MS, tell them to ignore the Israeli patent that may, more accurately, diagnose their symptoms.

An Israeli-made device helps restore the use of paralysed hands. This device electrically stimulates the hand muscles, providing hope to millions of stroke sufferers and victims of spinal injuries. If you wish to remove this hope of a better quality of life to these people, go ahead and boycott Israel.

Young children with breathing problems will soon be sleeping more soundly, thanks to a new Israeli device called the Child Hood. This innovation replaces the inhalation mask with an improved drug delivery system that provides relief for child and parent. Please tell anxious mothers that they shouldn't use this device because of your passionate cause.

These are just a few examples of how people have benefited medically from Israeli research and developments.

Boycotts often affect research. A new research centre in Israel hopes to throw light on brain disorders such as depression and Alzheimer's disease.

The Joseph Sangol Neuroscience Center in the Sheba Medical Center at Tel HaShomer Hospital, aims to bring thousands of scientists and doctors to focus on brain research.

A researcher at Israel's Ben Gurion University has succeeded in creating human monoclonal antibodies which can neutralize the highly contagious smallpox virus without inducing the dangerous side effects of the existing vaccine.

Two Israelis received the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Doctors Ciechanover and Hershko's research and discovery of one of the human cells most important cyclical processes will lead the way to DNA repair, control of newly produced proteins, and immune defense systems.

The Movement Disorder Surgery program at Israel's Hadassah Medical Centre has successfully eliminated the physical manifestations of Parkinson's disease in a select group of patients with a deep brain stimulation technique.

For women who undergo hysterectomies each year for the treatment of uterine fibroids, the development in Israel of the Ex Ablate 2000 System is a welcome breakthrough, offering a non-invasive alternative to surgery.

Israel is developing a nose drop that will provide a five year flu vaccine.

These are just a few of the projects that you can help stop with your Israel boycott.

Most of Windows operating systems were developed by Microsoft-Israel.

So, throw away your computer. Computers should have a sign attached saying Israel Inside. The Pentium NMX Chip technology was designed at Intel in Israel. Both the Pentium 4 microprocessor and the Centrum processor were entirely designed, developed, and produced in Israel.

Voice mail technology was developed in Israel. The technology for the AOL Instant Messenger ICQ was developed in 1996 in Israel by four young Israeli whiz kids.

Both Microsoft and Cisco built their only R. & D. facilities outside the US in Israel.

Get rid of your mobile phone. This technology was also developed in Israel by Motorola which has its biggest development centre in Israel. Most of the latest technology in your mobile phone was developed by Israeli scientists.

Part of your personal security rests with Israeli inventiveness, borne out of our urgent necessity to protect and defend our lives from the terrorists you support.

A phone can remotely activate a bomb, or be used for tactical communications by terrorists, bank robbers, or hostage-takers. It is vital that official security and police have access to cellular jamming and detection solutions. Israel's Net line Communications Technologies has the security expertise to help the fight against terror.

Israel has the highest concentration of hi-tech companies outside of Silicon Valley. Israel has more museums per capita. Israel has the second highest publication of new books per capita.

Relative to population, Israel is the largest immigrant absorbing nation on earth.

These immigrants come in search of democracy, religious freedom or expression, economic opportunity, and quality of life.

Israel is the only country in the world which had a net gain in the number of trees last year.

Israel is making a massive contribution to the world, including the Palestinians — and to you — in science, medicine, communications and security.

Pro rata for population, Israel is making a greater contribution than any other nation on earth.

And what is the Arab world doing? Buying rockets and missiles and threatening to wipe Israel off the face of the earth.

The call by your church to boycott Israel, which is the intention, reeks of the stench of anti-Semitism.

You should all hang your heads in shame.

Yours faithfully,
Gerald Oberman.

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IS LYING FOR JIHAD PERMISSIBLE IN ISLAM?; UNRWA SCHOOLS INCITE VIOLENCE AGAINST ISRAEL
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 6, 2010.
 

IS LYING FOR JIHAD PERMISSIBLE UNDER ISLAM?

ActForAmerica displays a video, Taqiyya, explaining that jihadists lie to Americans in behalf of their cause. The video is presented by authorities citing clear-speaking authorities and original sources.

"Taqiyya" means prevention. Under its Islamic doctrine, Muslims are forbidden to lie, except in certain circumstances. Those circumstances are ones preventing harm to: (1) Islam; (2) The believers' society; and (3) their families. The video cites verses of the Koran and Islamic authorities and the history of Islam on circumstance (1).

A former jihadist describes the joy felt by himself and fellow Middle Easterners when a Scud blew up "the enemy" or Yanks got killed, contrasted with the sympathy they all expressed when Americans came into the room, as if those Muslims were on their side. Not until he was alone in his car on the highway, did he feel free to whoop "Allah Akhbar," the cheer for victories over non-believers.

Another example is fundraising efforts for jihad — when speaking in Eastern languages, the talk is about "jihad brothers in Lebanon," but when Westerners approach, the Middle Easters switch the conversation to culture and ethnic food.

Muslim leaders, the video explains, know how to present themselves as reasonable, democratic, and supporters of human rights. If they attained power, they would repress democracy and human rights.

In American universities, the late Professor Edward Said established these notions: Islam is a religion of peace; Muslims' loyalty must not be questioned despite Islam's history of political action [implying self-aggrandizement at the expense of other religions], and that those who oppose the politics of Islam and would expose its agenda are bigots (To find the video, click here.)

Note that the video did not differentiate Radical Islam from normative Islam. One infers from this that the video producers consider the difference not over goals but over means. That is a starker notion of Islam than the one that civilization must defend itself from the Radicals but can live with normative Muslims. Straddling the two concepts of Islam is the fact that young, seemingly Westernized Muslims, can be incited into becoming warriors against non-Radicals of all faiths. This implies a third concept — that normative Muslims present a danger as a pool of potential recruits that Radicals increasingly tap. This third concept acknowledges that masses of ordinary Muslims can be fine people. Indeed, some Muslims do speak about against specific terrorist organizations and specific types of Islamic restrictions. Thee three concepts are not totally, mutually exclusive.

The video would appear to answer the question how come Western Muslims keep donating to Islamic charities that turn out to be terrorist fronts or terrorist supporters. Maybe they are not duped and know to whom and for what they are donating.

Arafat used to speak differently to Westerners and to fellow Muslims. At the time he was signing peace agreements with Israel, he also assured Muslim countries' diplomats that he was thereby fulfilling jihad in phases. The West pretended he had become moderate.

A recent example of Islamic deception was demonstrated by Arafat's aide and successor, Abbas. Abbas told U.S. Jewish leaders that he opposed Holocaust denial, incitement to terrorism, and ethnic violence. He neglected to tell them that his graduate thesis promoted Holocaust denial, he praises terrorists, and he threatened war if his diplomacy does not get the mortal concessions he demands of Israel. (I documented many instances of Abbas and his officials glorifying terrorism).

This subject is important. It deserves serious discussion, not the name-calling to which most critics limit themselves. When the case against them is based on historical figures and sources, and is specific, they do not counter it by just denouncing those who make that case or report it.
 

UNRWA SCHOOLS IN JERUSALEM INCITE VIOLENCE AGAINST ISRAEL

UNRWA schools, including the two in Jerusalem, incite to violence against Israel. Their textbooks praise as "martyrs" to the faith Muslims who die while attacking Israel. The books also advise students descended from Arab refugees, that they have a "right" to go live in Israel.

The controversy over Palestinian Arab textbooks was brought by investigative reporter David Bedein, head of Israel Resources News Agency, before Ehud Olmert, then Mayor of Jerusalem. When informed of the anti-Israel indoctrination in Arab textbooks in his city, Olmert brushed off concern, "They can teach what they want, and we'll teach what we want."

In an interview with an Israel Resources News Agency staffer, PA Minister of Education Lamis al-Alami frankly acknowledged that the Arab schools in Jerusalem use the same textbooks as those in Ramallah and in Gaza. [Those books long have been problematic.] Bedein concludes that the Palestinian Arab education system prepares the youth for war. Apparently, UNRWA is party to this.

Arab schools in Jerusalem receive their funds primarily from the municipality and partly from the national government. UNRWA schools there and elsewhere, depend on UN donations largely from the U.S. and EU.

From testimony by PA leaders and teachers and students in UN schools, Bedein's organization and the Center for Near East Policy and Research produced a film, "For the Sake of Nakba", already shown in Congress (Maayana Miskin, Israel Resource News Agency, 8/6/10)

Refugees usually are integrated where they land. There is no right to return. UN Resolution 194 was hedged with conditions about making peace that the Arab refugees do not meet. Their descendants born outside of Israel are not refugees.

Mayor Olmert's condoning of seditious textbooks in his city reflects Israeli leaders' problem-aversion that Israeli leaders help subsidize and build up into greater problems.

Should the U.S. reconsider whether its donations to UNRWA in the name of charity and abused in the name of holy war?
 

U.S. INDICTS 14 FOR HELPING SOMALIA TERRORISM

Somali and other immigrants in Arizona (Getty/John Moore)

The U.S. has filed charges against 14 citizens and non-citizen residents for helping the al-Shabaab terrorist organization in Somalia. That is the organization responsible for killing dozens of sports fans in Uganda. The U.S. believes that the organization works with al-Qaida.

The charges include helping finance and recruit for terrorism. Two women, born in Somalia, were accused of raising funds among Somalis in the U.S., ostensibly to help needy people.

Attorney-General Eric Holder warned that more and more people in the U.S. are attracted by "extremist" ideology and start to act on it (Evan Perez, Wall St. J., 8/6/10, A3).

Again the question arises whether Muslim donors are aware that their gifts are for murder, not charity. Should there be some government effort at consumer education about finding legitimate charities and not terrorist fronts?

A reader once boasted that the Internet makes it difficult to deceive people with false information. Let him tell that to the indicted terrorists.

What is the government doing to make the jihadists ideology appearing on Internet less attractive and perhaps less available? After all, his is modern war.

Can the U.S. assimilate immigrants from jihadist societies?
 

WASHINGTON POST CARTOONIST BLAMES NETANYAHU FOR WHAT ABBAS DOES

Washington Post cartoonist Tome Toles blames Israel for what the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) does. He sketched Obama watching Israeli PM Netanyahu and P.A. head Abbas. Abbas said that everything is on the table; Netanyahu refused to sit at that table.

In contrast to the cartoon's message, a day earlier, the newspaper told the Associated Press story of President Obama warning Abbas not to refuse to resume direct peace talks with Israel. Obama said this threatens U.S.-P.A. relations.

Readers inquired of the Post whether Mr. Toles meant the reverse, which corresponds with real life. [Netanyahu said he is ready for direct negotiations; Abbas either refuses or demands that all his negotiation goals be accepted before what would become pointless negotiations. Hence Obama was warning Abbas and not Netanyahu.]

It was not an inadvertent error. Toles' excuse for his 100% error was that cartoons are not intended to be 100% accurate. Some excuse! (Camera, 8/4/10).

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

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QUESTIONS ARISE ABOUT THE SECRETARY-GENERAL'S FLOTILLA INVESTIGATION
Posted by Eye on the UN, August 6, 2010.

This article by Anne Bayefsky appears today on WeeklyStandard.com.

Obama administration assurances prove empty

 

Only days after Israel took the unprecedented step of agreeing to participate in a UN investigation on the Gaza flotilla incident, assurances given by the Obama administration have proven to be empty. The episode paints a disturbing picture of the administration's actions in pushing for this investigation, and suggests that Israel's decision to participate should be revisited.

The incident at the end of May left nine dead on one of six boats attempting to break Israel's naval blockade of Gaza. It was the only boat on which Turkish-backed pro-Hamas extremists preferred to attack the Israeli military rather than cooperate with Israel's offer to deliver the goods overland after inspection.

Twenty-four hours later, at breakneck speed for the UN and at odds with its usual pattern of ignoring civilian deaths by the thousands anywhere else, the Security Council issued a presidential statement. With the approval of the Obama administration, the Council called for "a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation conforming to international standards." A day later, the UN Human Rights Council established an allegedly "independent international fact finding mission" with a mandate to report on what it had already declared was Israel's "outrageous attack."

Israel undertook a number of investigations, even adding two international experts to one of them in an extraordinary gesture to placate President Obama. But Muslim states, including Turkey, wanted more. In addition, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon believed that assembling his own investigative committee would be an opportunity to win Muslim support for his bid to win a second-term in office. And the Obama administration, which has enthusiastically embraced the United Nations, refused to oppose the secretary general's plan.

So on August 2, Ban launched his investigation, which got off the ground only because the U.S. pressed Israel to agree, and Israel took American assurances seriously. U.S. ambassador to the UN Susan Rice spelled some of them out: "The United States expects that the Panel will...obviate the need for any overlapping international inquiries." The overlapping inquiry of the Human Rights Council, she claimed, would go away.

At exactly the same time, however, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon released a statement in which he made no reference to the Human Rights Council, and no commitment to seek the dissolution of the Council's investigation.

Two days later the president of the Human Rights Council, Sihasak Phuangketkeow, called Rice's bluff. He told UN radio that "it was crucial that the Council investigate," and said to reporters in Geneva "I feel very strongly that we have to proceed."

Ambassador Rice made other promises. She described the purpose of the panel this way: "[I]t would receive and review the [Turkish and Israeli] reports of each...national investigation...and make recommendations as to how to avoid such incidents in the future. This Panel is not a substitute for those national investigations...The focus of the Panel is appropriately on the future." In other words, the UN inquiry would not supersede Israel's own efforts or launch a new investigation since that would mean focusing on the past.

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz added that the Israeli government believed it had received assurances that "the review panel will not have the authority to subpoena witnesses, including Israel Defense Forces soldiers and officers."

Once again, Rice's story was immediately challenged. The American charge d'affaires in Ankara was reportedly reprimanded by the Turkish foreign ministry because of Rice's remarks. Turkey directly repudiated Rice's characterization of the inquiry's scope. In the words of a senior official speaking on Tuesday to the Turkish Hurriyet Daily News, "saying 'the probe is not a substitute for national investigations' is misleading."

The secretary general's spokesperson also contradicted Rice's account. He told a press briefing on Monday that the panel has been "tasked with making findings about the facts and circumstances and context of the incident... and one assumes that it will be necessary to ask...for more information...It isn't just receiving and reviewing the reports..." In response to a question about whether the panel could interview witnesses, including members of the Israel Defense Forces, the spokesperson responded, "It's for them [the panel] to decide whether to ask." And on Thursday, the spokesperson disputed the notion that the focus of the panel was on the future. He said, the "Panel of Inquiry...is looking back at that incident and...it's looking into the facts."

At bottom, it appears that the mandate of the panel is actually still up in the air. On Monday the secretary general's spokesperson said, "it will be for the panel to decide exactly how they will operate and decide on what steps may need to be taken in order to obtain...information from the national authorities." The secretary general's office has refused to release a copy of the panel's mandate, despite requests from states, NGOs, and members of the press. And on Thursday, a senior official in Ban's Office said that there are no "terms of reference" for the panel yet because "nothing is finalized or agreed." He added, "at this point, there might be different drafts of possible terms of reference". The panel will have four members, only one will be Israeli, and will operate by consensus "where possible." So if the terms of reference are really undecided, or Israel has been misled as to their content, their definition has now slipped beyond Israel's control.

Nor is there agreement on the ultimate goal of the inquiry. Rice suggested the end game was a diplomatic reconciliation between Turkey and Israel, while Turkey and other Muslim states have a much different agenda. Turkey said on Tuesday: "This problem is not just a matter between Turkey and Israel; it's an international problem." The Malaysian government said on the same day that it "believes that the ultimate aim of the Panel's investigation must be to bring to justice the perpetrators of the attack against the humanitarian flotilla" — that is, to deliver Israeli heads on a platter. To drive the point home, Malaysia proceeded to urge this week that yet another General Assembly emergency special session on Israel be convened.

With American assurances not worth the piece of paper they are apparently not written on, Israel should rethink its decision to cooperate with the secretary general's investigation — before the inevitable witch hunt begins.

For more United Nations coverage see www.EYEontheUN.org.

EYEontheUN monitors the UN direct from UN Headquarters in New York. EYEontheUN brings to light the real UN record on the key threats to democracy, human rights, and peace and security in our time. EYEontheUN provides a unique information base for the re-evaluation of priorities and directions for modern-day democratic societies.

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WE OWE THE JEWS
Posted by Fred Reifenberg, August 5, 2010.

What follows is an edited version of a speech delivered by historian Andrew Roberts to the Friends of Israel Initiative in the British House of Commons on July 19.

 

From Morocco to Afghanistan, from the Caspian Sea to Aden, the 5.25 million square miles of territory belonging to members of the Arab League is home to over 330 million people, whereas Israel covers only 8,000 square miles, and is home to seven million citizens, one-fifth of whom are Arabs. The Jews of the Holy Land are thus surrounded by hostile states 650 times their size in territory and 60 times their population; yet their last, best hope of ending two millennia of international persecution — the State of Israel — has somehow survived. When during the Second World War, the island of Malta came through three terrible years of bombardment and destruction, it was rightly awarded the George Medal for bravery. Today Israel should be awarded a similar decoration for defending democracy, tolerance and Western values against a murderous onslaught that has lasted 20 times as long.

Jerusalem is the site of the Temple of Solomon and Herod. The stones of a palace erected by King David himself are even now being unearthed just outside the walls of Jerusalem. Everything that makes a nation state legitimate — blood shed, soil tilled, international agreements — argues for Israel's right to exist, yet that is still denied by the Arab League. For many of their governments, which are rich enough to have economically solved the Palestinian refugee problem decades ago, it is useful to have Israel as a scapegoat to divert attention from the tyranny, failure and corruption of their own regimes.

The tragic truth is that it suits Arab states very well to have the Palestinians endure permanent refugee status; whenever Israel puts forward workable solutions they are stymied by those whose interests put the destruction of Israel before the genuine well-being of the Palestinians. Both King Abdullah I of Jordan and Anwar Sadat of Egypt were assassinated when they attempted to come to some kind of accommodation with a country that most sane people now accept is not going away.

"We owe to the Jews," wrote Winston Churchill in 1920, "a system of ethics which, even if it were entirely separated from the supernatural, would be incomparably the most precious possession of mankind, worth in fact the fruits of all wisdom and learning put together."

Although they make up less than half of 1% of the world's population, between 1901 and 1950 Jews won 14% of all the Nobel Prizes awarded for literature and science, and between 1951 and 2000 Jews won 32% of the Nobel Prizes for medicine, 32% for physics, 39% for economics and 29% for science. This, despite so many of their greatest intellects dying in the gas chambers. Yet we tend to treat Israel like a leper on the international scene, threatening her with academic boycotts if she builds a separation wall that has so far reduced suicide bombings by 95% over three years.

Her Majesty the Queen has been on the throne for 57 years and in that time has undertaken 250 official visits to 129 countries, yet has not yet set foot in Israel. She has visited 14 Arab countries, so it cannot have been that she wasn't in the region.

After the Holocaust, the Jewish people recognized that they must have their own state, a homeland where they could forever be safe from a repetition of such horrors. Since then, Israel has had to fight five major wars for her existence. Radical Islam is never going to accept the concept of an Israeli State, so the struggle is likely to continue for another 60 years, but the Jews know that that is less dangerous than entrusting their security to anyone else.

I recently visited Auschwitz-Birkenau. Walking along a line of huts and the railway siding, where their forebears had been worked and starved and beaten and frozen and gassed to death, were a group of Jewish schoolchildren, one of whom was carrying over his shoulder the Israeli flag. It was a moving sight, for it was the sovereign independence represented by that flag which guarantees that the obscenity of genocide will never again befall the Jewish people.

No people in history have needed the right to self-defence and legitimacy more than the Jews of Israel, and that is what we in the Friends of Israel Initiative demand here today.

Contact Fred Reifenberg by email at freify@netvision.net.il

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ISLAM IS ISLAM IS ISLAM
Posted by Victor Sharpe, August 5, 2010.
 

To quote the old proverb: "If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, looks like a duck, it must be a duck." So it is with Islam. There is no radical Islam, no hijacked Islam, no corrupted Islam, no extreme Islam and no moderate Islam: There is simply Islam.

Listening to White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs, answering questions from reporters about the planned 15 story high mosque mere yards from ground zero was revealing. He said: "I think you've heard this administration and the last administration talk about the fact that we are not at war with a religion but with an idea that has corrupted a religion."

There again is that oft repeated phrase that the religion of Islam has been corrupted. But does Gibbs and his boss, Barack Hussein Obama, truly believe that Islam is a peaceful religion and not without a major pillar called jihad with its dire implications for all non-Moslems or, as the Muslim world likes to describe them: infidels.

One still hears the phrase by well-meaning but misguided individuals that Islam means peace. No. Islam means submission; not submission to the will of the people but solely to the will of Allah. And Moslems may not ever question the teachings of the prophet Mohammed.

Islam also teaches that it is superior to all other religions. It is Islam über alles. The Moslem is taught that Judaism and Christianity perverted the will of Allah and Islam received the superior revelation requiring, therefore, that Jews and Christians ultimately submit to Islam.

Islam bases its ideology on five pillars — Witness to Allah and his prophet Mohammed; Prayer five times daily facing Mecca and the Ka'ba; Almsgiving to the poor and to the mosque; Fasting during the month of Ramadan; and Pilgrimage to Mecca. But there is a sixth pillar called jihad. This is now the greatest of all threats to Judeo-Christian civilization. Indeed one can say that much of the world faces an existential threat to its survival, not from the manufactured and erroneous science of global warming but from global jihad.

According to Abraham Katsh, who wrote the following as far back as 1954 in his book on the Koran:

"The duty of Jihad, the waging of Holy War, has been raised to the dignity of a sixth canonical obligation ... To the Moslem, the world is divided into regions under Islamic control, the dar al-Islam, and regions not subjected as yet, the dar al-harb.

"Between this area of warfare and the Muslim dominated part of the world there can be no peace. Practical considerations may induce the Muslim leaders to conclude an armistice, but the obligation to conquer and, if possible, convert never lapses. Nor can territory once under Muslim rule be lawfully yielded to the unbeliever. Legal theory has gone so far as to define as dar al-Islam any area where at least one Muslim custom is observed.

"Thanks to this concept, the Moslem is required to subdue the infidel, and he who dies in the path of Allah is considered a martyr and assured of Paradise and of unique privileges there."

Now we can see how there will never be a true and lasting peace by the Muslim Arabs — who call themselves Palestinians, or by the Arab and Muslim states — with Israel. Islam will not allow it. So it is pointless, therefore, and against God's Covenant with His people, to give away one single centimeter of biblical and ancestral Jewish land to the so-called Palestinian Arabs or to anyone else.

Nor can there ever be peace between Muslim Kosovo and Orthodox Christian Serbia or between Muslim Pakistan and Hindu India, to name a few of the endless Muslim engendered wars raging in the world today. The simple reason is that Islam will never countenance or accept peace with any non-Muslim neighbor: Never.

Jihad requires the Moslem believers to spread what they consider "Islamic truth" by all means, especially by the sword. Now in our modern world, the sword gives way to the most lethal and devastating weaponry in man's military arsenal. That is why the leader of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, seeks the ultimate nuclear weapon to destroy Israel and usher in what he believes to be the Islamic messiah, the 12th Imam.

As I've written previously, Islam, through jihad, is to be spread by what is called in Arabic, Dar al-Islam, the "House of Submission" meaning those lands occupied and controlled by Islamic states and under Sharia law. Those nations not yet conquered by Muslim forces are in what is called the "Dar al-Harb: the House of War, and must be eventually overcome by endless war.

Islam seeks to impose Sharia law wherever it gains control. It is based upon the Koran and the Sunna and has not been reformed or modified since the 7th century. It can never be changed. That is why we see on the front page of Time magazine the horrific photograph of the 18 year old Afghani girl whose nose and ears were cut off by her husband, acting according to Islamic Sharia law. Her offense was that she had fled from her cruel family and in-laws and, as a mere woman under Taliban Islamic rule, she had little or no rights.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia invests endless billions of dollars to build mosques throughout the world. The international blanketing of cities with mosques is just another expression of jihad. In Western Europe, most famously renamed Eurabia by the writer, Bat Yeor, there may soon come a time when there will be more minarets than steeples.

Perhaps the most egregious and blatant example of Islamic triumphalism is the planned construction of the giant mosque in New York, almost upon the site of the horrific destruction of the Twin Towers by Moslem terrorists acting in the name of Allah.

The proposed Cordoba Mosque (named after the Islamic defeat of Christians in Spain during the 8th century) is to be opened in 2011 on the very anniversary of the September 11, 2001 atrocity — a flagrant insult to the memory of the thousands of innocents who died at the hands of Moslem fanatics and believers, most of them Saudis.

It is depressing to see and hear liberals such as White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs, and New York Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, denigrating principled opponents of the giant mosque, accusing them of being against religious freedom. This is a canard and as baseless as the claim by proponents of the building of a mosque at ground zero as being merely Muslim outreach and interfaith understanding.

What liberals and "progressives" fail to understand by the very location of the mosque is what jihad is all about. Subdue the "infidel" at all costs. For Moslems, the Islamic obligation to conquer and convert the unbeliever and impose Sharia law must never lapse.

Victor Sharpe is the author of Volumes One and Two of Politicide: The attempted murder of the Jewish state. The books may be purchased on line from the publisher www.lulu.com or from www.Amazon.com Contact Victor Sharpe by email at janvic42@gmail.com

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ISRAEL'S ASIAN OPTION
Posted by M Stephen Kramer, August 5, 2010.
 

While looking over the articles emailed to me by the tireless Tel Belman in his excellent daily digest (register at www.israpundit.com), I recently came across an illuminating article by Professor J.P. Golbert, who specializes in International Law. Citing Israel's vaunted military technology, Golbert writes: Israel is not without alternatives or without recourse [to tepid American, and weak European, actions to interdict Iran's nuclear weapons development]. Golbert proposes a beefed-up alliance with India as a natural and potent combination. (www.israpundit.com/archives/25460)

There's no doubt that Israel's Western allies are wavering, at best, in their support for the only Western democracy in the Middle East. America's State Department, and many in the Obama administration, view Israel as more of a hindrance than as the most stalwart ally in the region. The Europeans are even more problematic, hardly disguising their antipathy towards Israel and their fawning, servile attitude towards the Arabs. European support is nearly absent except for some of the smaller and weaker Eastern European and Balkan countries. (Missing from Golbert's analysis is Russia, which nonetheless is always ready to stir up trouble among its rivals.)

The idea that Israel and India have faced similar problems and complement each other is not new. The two countries have very strong trade and military relationships: Israel is India's second largest supplier of arms; the two countries share intelligence and expertise on Islamic terrorism; they each have a substantial Muslim minority; both are threatened by movements within their Muslim communities for autonomy in areas that are heavily populated by Muslims.

Most importantly, both countries face large Muslim enemies close at hand. Iran's wish to eradicate Israel is well known and their proxies on Israel's borders, Hizbullah and Hamas, are armed to the teeth with sophisticated missiles and low-tech but dangerous rockets. India faces Pakistan, a nuclear-armed nation like itself, whose intelligence services and military are riddled with Islamist allies and sympathizers. Neither Israel nor India can relax with such enemies across their borders and a possible (some say definite) Fifth Column within their borders.

Golbert proposes short term strategic cooperation with India: "In the immediate future, Israel and India might do something of utmost importance together, that being the twin threats of Iranian nuclear weapons and Pakistani nuclear weapons. The former directly threatens Israel. The latter directly threatens India, particularly if Pakistan becomes a failed state, which it almost is already. If Israel and India help each other, it might be possible to eliminate both nuclear threats. To fly from India might not bring Israel closer to the Iranian nuclear plants but it would have the advantage of not having to cross airspace under American control. It is not clear to me whether it is necessary at all to use manned aircraft for the purpose when Israel has both ballistic missiles and cruise missiles that could do the job.

"Nor is it necessary to destroy the nuclear facilities themselves. The nuclear facilities cannot function without infrastructure. They are useless without electricity and water and raw materials. Israel can certainly cripple Iran's infrastructure, bomb the Majlis and the mullas and the Presidential Palace and even hunt down the scientists involved in the nuclear project. And the same is true of Pakistan.

"Of course, the world would be outraged and might even apply serious sanctions against Israel and India. Both Israel and India could withstand those. It would require considerable economic reorientation and restructuring but it is high time that took place anyway. Both countries would emerge stronger, more independent and more democratic for having done so.

"Israel can expect to meet concerted opposition from the world to these measures. ... condemned, vilified and loathed. Israel can even expect that there might be sanctions imposed. On the other hand, submission and obsequiousness and 'goodwill gestures,' 'confidence building measures,' territorial concessions, unconditional unilateral withdrawal from southern Lebanon and Gaza and restraint have brought nothing but condemnation, vilification and loathing, deligitimization and calls for Israel's destruction (meaning genocide) when it defended itself. "As long as Israel still exists, more concessions will be demanded of her. In contrast, Israeli and Jewish prestige and acceptance were never higher than following the Six-Day War when the nations feared and respected Israel.

The same is true of India. Who believes that territorial demands on India would cease if India were to relinquish Kashmir? 'Mughalistan' is already an objective with a plan to separate the whole of northern India into a continuous Muslim state incorporating everything from Pakistan to the eastern border of India and even a part of the coast of Myanmar. (See http://factindiablog.wordpress.com/2009/01/04/moghulistan/ )"

What is Mughalistan? If you go to the above factiindiablog site, there is an exhaustive explanation of this term, which is off the radar screen of Western defense strategists and politicians. "Mughalistan (or Mughalstan) is the name of an independent homeland proposed for the Muslims of India. This Mughal-Muslim state in the Indian subcontinent will include all of North India and Eastern India, and will be formed by merging Pakistan and Bangladesh through a large corridor of land running across the Indo-Gangetic plain, the heartland of India. This Mughalistan corridor will comprise Muslim-majority areas of Northern India and eastern India that will be partitioned for the second time in history [first time to India by the British in 1946]. Greater Mughalistan is of strategic significance as it will provide a contiguous, strategic corridor linking the Ummah [the whole Muslim community] into a pan-Islamic Caliphate."

Imagine the northern portion of India controlled by Muslims and contiguous with Pakistan on the west and Bangladesh on the east. (Bangladesh was originally called East Pakistan.) The Indian province of Kashmir is already a powder keg in the region. Mughalistan would include that entire area and could only be created by a massive war between Hindus and Muslims. With the population of the region numbering well over a billion, and China located just to the northeast, the opportunities for an incredible conflagration dwarf even the dire situation in the Middle East.

Golbert and many other pundits have stated that Pakistan is in grave danger of being taken over by the Taliban and Al Qaeda. With the possible advent of Mughalistan, Islamic militarism would cover a huge swath of Asia. Israel is itself threatened by Iran, its proxies, and possibly other Arab states — even ones that are currently "at peace" with Israel.

The partnership of India, the world's second largest country (which will probably overtake China in population by mid-century), and Israel, (tiny but a technological superpower), is an undertaking that both countries are hopefully forging right now. With an effete Europe, a wavering America, and troublesome Russia with its own agenda, it's in the vital interests of Israel and India to draw even closer.

Stephen Kramer is author of "Encountering Israel — Geography, History, Culture." Contact him by email at mskramer@jhu.edu

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WELCOME TO ISRAEL
Posted by David Wilder, August 5, 2010.

Photos and video are at:
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Blogs/Message.aspx/4309

 

I'd already spent two years in Israel when I came back officially as an Oleh Hadash, a new Israeli immigrant. I remember it fairly well. January, 1978. Having finished university and done a stint on Kibbutz, the time had come to get serious.

The plane landed sometime in the early evening. I was by myself, had no family here, but a few friends. They probably knew I was coming back, but waited for my call.

Of course, coming over as an Israeli meant that I had to 'go through the mill.' Actually it wasn't too bad. The normal filling in forms in the airport office of the ministry of immigration, and then waiting for the free ride to my choice of destination. I do recall raising my voice as the hours marched on, but was told, 'savlanut, savlanut' (which means patience). I didn't have much choice. My Hebrew wasn't non-existent, but certainly not good enough to express myself in any great detail.

Finally, riding in some kind of truck, I made it to a dormitory in Talpiot, Jerusalem sometime after midnight. The gate was locked and it took some time until the building's Russian guard finally heard the doorbell and let me in. The housemother showed me to my room, where my new roomate was rudely awakened in the early hours of the morning. Eventually he forgave me and is today a friend living in nearby Kiryat Arba.

That was how it began. No bells or whistles, but an inner sense of pride — 'Here I am, now I'm an Israeli.' It was a good feeling.

Yesterday I 'made Aliyah' all over again.

We had friends who were coming over on the Nefesh b'Nefesh flight, bringing some 230 new Israelis to our homeland from North America. The Abrams family, from Atlantic City, New Jersey, were finally coming home.

This flight over was far from their first. The family has been visiting Israel for at least one month every summer for over ten years. A few years ago they almost made it a permanent stay, but were held up at the last minute. The real hero of the family are not the parents, rather their oldest daughter, Elana, who decided that Atlantic City really wasn't the place for a 'good Jewish girl' to go to high school. So a few years she left the US for Israel, on her own, to attend a women's school in Bnei Brak. She came to visit us in Hebron every now and again; we tried to ease her way as much as we could. But in reality, her success was her own. A month ago she finished, Bagrut (graduation examinations) and all, and is planning, a year from now, to begin medical school here in Israel.

Standard studies weren't enough of a challenge, so Elana also volunteered with Magen David Adom, and rode around in ambulances in the middle of the night assisting people who needed help. When that wasn't keeping her busy she starred on her school's basketball team.

In about a month Elana will begin her 'Shnat Sherut,' a year of volunteer work religious women undertake in place of army duty. She will be continuing her work with Magen David Adom and emergency aid, based in Kiryat Arba.

And during her free time she'll be helping her parents and siblings adjust to their new lives in Jerusalem.

A month or so ago my daughter, who's just a year older than Elana, received an invitation to greet the family at Ben Gurion airport upon arrival of the Nefesh b'Nefesh flight. The plane was supposed to land at about 7:30 AM, and invited guests had to be there by 6:45. That meant we'd have to leave the house at about 5:00. A little early for me. But at the last minute we decided to go.

It didn't take too long until the Terminal 1 hall was packed with others just like us, waiting to welcome the new Israelis. Having a press pass, I was able to wait only meters away from the shuttle buses transporting the people from the plane to the airport. About thirty Israeli soldiers in dress uniform lined the walkway, with live music creating an authentic holiday atmosphere. When the first bus pulled up they began playing 'Hevenu Shalom Alechem' with hundreds of people waving Israeli flags, singing and cheering. As the passengers stepped off the bus, they seemed to be stunned.

There were young and old, singles and families of six and seven children. One group included a four generation family. Among the arrivals were eighty five youth who will be inducted into the army in a couple of weeks. From five months to ninty four years old, all coming to live in Israel. The expressions on these people's faces left little need for words — they could not believe the reception they were receiving, as they took their first steps as Israelis. nbn1.jpg

My friends were on one of the last shuttles arriving at the terminal. I'd been filming video and photos of the festivities, but when I saw Ken and the others step off the bus I couldn't really control myself. I ran over to him, grabbed his hands and started dancing, around and around and around.

Earlier in the morning I'd interviewed an NBN member, who told me that whenever he participated in these events, he had tears in his eyes. Well, he wasn't the only one.

Finally, with everyone in the hall, a beautiful ceremony commenced, which included a speech by President Shimon Peres and a performance by Israeli singer Rami Kleinstein. But the 'stars of the show,' as far as I'm concerned, were Rabbi Yehoshua Fass and Mr. Tony Gelbart, who initiated Nefesh b'Nefesh less than a decade ago, and have, so far, brought over 25,000 new Israelis to Israel.

Watching the event, I could only look back and remember my Aliyah experience over thirty years ago, put myself in these people's shoes, and say to myself, "Welcome to Israel."

David Wilder is spokesman of The Jewish Community of Hebron. You can contribute directly in Israel to The Jewish Community of Hebron, POB105, Kiryat Arba-Hebron 90100, email: hebron@hebron.org.il or phone: 972-52-431-7055. In USA, write to The Hebron Fund, 1760 Ocean Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11230, email: hebronfund@aol.com or phone: 718 677 6886.

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DO GAZA FLOTILLAS PROVIDE MATERIAL SUPPORT TO HAMAS?
Posted by Jonathan Schanzer, August 5, 2010.
 

Former federal prosecutor Andy McCarthy recently argued at National Review Online that the federal government has reason to investigate Rashid Khalidi, an activist Middle Eastern studies professor at Columbia University. What prompted this? Khalidi's efforts to raise $370,000 for a new sea vessel (to be named The Audacity of Hope, after President Barack Obama's second book) designed to break the Israeli blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

As increasing numbers of pro-Palestinian activists try to break the blockade of Gaza, McCarthy's argument is worth exploring. Are these flotillas legal?

McCarthy notes that it is illegal for Americans "to furnish or fit out a vessel in the service of any foreign entity 'to cruise, or commit hostilities' against a nation with which the U.S. is at peace." Israel, of course, is an American ally that is imposing a policy in Gaza that Washington officially supports.

McCarthy also notes that the Logan Act prohibits U.S. citizens "from carrying on 'any correspondence or intercourse' with any foreign government... to 'defeat the measures of the United States.'" To this end, McCarthy then suggests that the Justice Department should investigate flotilla organizers' communications with the de facto Hamas government in Gaza, particularly if they seek to undermine U.S. policy.

In the end, it is McCarthy's third point that is the most convincing: The Justice Department, under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, could also investigate American flotilla organizers for providing material support to a terrorist group.

Hamas was designated as a terrorist organization by the State Department in 1997 and the Treasury Department in 1995. After more than two decades of suicide bombings and firing rockets at civilian populations, its status has not changed. The only thing that has: Hamas is the de facto government in Gaza after launching a violent coup against the Palestinian Authority in 2007.

So, when flotilla organizers raise money to send to the Gaza Strip, which is controlled entirely by Hamas, they could be directly or indirectly bankrolling Hamas. To find out if this is the case, they will need to explain: Will they deliver the goods directly to the hands of the Hamas government in Gaza? Will they work through the United Nations? Do they know if the U.N.'s humanitarian efforts are governed by Hamas? Will they work through other NGOs? Are those NGOs free to work outside of the control of Hamas in the Gaza Strip?

According to a Supreme Court decision in June (Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project), the prohibition against material support can apply even when the offerings are not money or weapons.

Not surprisingly, this has triggered criticism, including from former president Jimmy Carter, who advocates for engagement with Hamas. Carter says the material support clause "inhibits the work of human rights and conflict resolution groups."

However, as Chief Justice John Roberts noted, even if the support is administered with peaceful intent, it can lighten the financial burden of a terrorist group, and thus allow it to expend resources on terrorist activities.

Justice Roberts added that such support also "helps lend legitimacy to foreign terrorist groups — legitimacy that makes it easier for those groups to persist, to recruit members and to raise funds — all of which facilitate more terrorist attacks."

The debate will undoubtedly continue. As it does, Rashid Khalidi and The Audacity of Hope could serve as a litmus test.

Jonathan Schanzer is a former U.S. Treasury terrorism analyst. He is the vice president of research for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

This artaicles appeared today in the Weekly Standard Blog. It is archived at Schanzer's website:
http://schanzer.pundicity.com/7789/do-gaza- flotillas-provide-material-support-to

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VIOLENCE AGAINST ISRAEL FROM SINAI AND LEBANON; TERRORISTS ATTACKED TANKER
Posted by Richard H. Shulman, August 5, 2010.
 

NEW YORK MOSQUE, ADL, AND TOLERANCE

Rally against the mosque (AP/Swoan Parker)

The New York Times editorial of August 4 accused the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) of an "eagerly pile on" with bigots against a mega-mosque planned to overlook Ground Zero. Next day, ADL denied any association with bigots and denounced any bigotry in this issue. The ADL letter cited instances of siding with Muslims, as the Muslim congressman who wanted to take the oath of office on the Koran and the Muslim woman barred from wearing facial covering in court.

ADL does not deny the right of Muslims to build a mosque on land it bought. It asks them to be sensitive to the feelings of those who were killed there in the name of Islam. ADL chastises the editors for impugning its motives (Robert G. Sugarman, National Chairman).

The Times had advanced arguments in behalf of Constitutional rights that were not challenged. Many self-righteous arguments are put forward that do not deal with the issues raised. These are the real issues: (1) Consideration and tolerance by mosque sponsors; (2) Check the financing to make sure this is not sponsored by those at war on the West; and (3) Though the mosque officials talk more and more about tolerance, the imam has a background of pro-terrorism and of other extremist sentiment, which, combined with the known Islamist practice of deception and pretense at moderation, is suspicious. Islamo-fascism has been described as a fascist hijacking of Islam.

ADL conceives of the court barring of facial covering as biased. It often is not bias but a matter of: (1) Security checking; and (2) Islamic clothing is a way of controlling women so as to help maintain a Muslim state within a Western state. ADL needs to understand that jihadists hide behind religion and exploit our tolerance in order to foster war against us.

(For earlier article on the mosque, click here. For Campus Watch article by a Muslim on the matter of bias, click here.)

On a reader comment: "Israel has over 200 nukes, expands its borders via settlements on a daily basis, commits piracy in international waters, war crimes in Gaza and you say Iran is the bad guy? Too funny."

Nuclear weapons: Possession of nuclear weapons does not intrinsically pose a risk to the world. Several countries have them. Some of those countries present a risk, some do not. North Korea poses a risk. Iran would pose a risk.

Borders: Israel does not have a formal border with Judea-Samaria (a.k.a. West Bank), it has an armistice line. Building Jewish communities there does not expand the State of Israel. Such construction does not expand the municipal boundaries, either, because the construction takes place within them. The land built on is either State land, for which permission to build was given, or purchased land. There is no sovereign ruler of Judea-Samaria; its status is that of the unallocated part of the Palestine Mandate, to which Israel is primary heir, because that is part of the Jewish homeland for which the Mandate was established. Jewish construction there is legal and reasonable.

Several Arab states have attacked Israel in order to erase its borders, formal and informal, and, at least in 1948, in order to expand their own borders. Jordan tried to annex Judea-Samaria. Syria has kept a slice of Israeli territory.

Having acquired territory in self-defense, Israel is entitled to retain most of it for security against further aggression, but Israel relinquished most of it. The area withdrawn from is bigger than the State of Israel.

Piracy: Referring to Israel's enforcement of its blockade of Gaza? Here is a link to my articles explaining that the blockade is legal, enforcement of it is legal, running it or attacking it is not legal, and enforcement on the high seas in the circumstances involved was legal, not piracy. Israelis were attacked. (For an article on the blockade's legality, click here.)

War crimes in Gaza: Hamas committed war crimes in Gaza by deliberately attacking Israeli civilians there and by placing military facilities among its own civilians as human shields.

Israel did not commit war crimes in Gaza by attacking those military facilities, despite some civilians getting killed as a result. (Here are a couple of links to my articles ( here and here ) explaining this.
 

DARFUR VIOLENCE RISING AND SHIFTING

In Nigeria, jihad against Christian (Archdiocese of Jos)

The violence in Darfur is rising and shifting. Darfur is not in southern Sudan, which may vote for independence from Sudan, but both regions have been subjected to genocidal jihad, with victims in the millions.

Why the rise and the shift in violence in Darfur? One reason is to regain fuller control and to discourage Darfur from seeking to join the secession. Another reason is that having dislodged the aboriginal Africans, Arab tribes now are vying for the water rights shrinking from drought [and probably also from poor agricultural practices]. In addition, anarchy provided criminal elements with an opening (Neil MacFarquhar, New York Times, 8/5, A12).

In southern Sudan, keeping oil-bearing land out of the hands of secessionists was a factor. At first, the genocide was religious, by Muslims against non-Muslims. Then it became national or racial, by Arab Muslims against black Muslims. It is very difficult for multiple ethnicities to co-exist in one country. If one of them has a jihadist ideology or is racist, peaceful co-existence is impossible.
 

VIOLENCE AGAINST ISRAEL FROM SINAI AND LEBANON

Casket of slain IDF Lt. Colonel (Getty/Uriel Sinai, Pool)

The UN acknowledged that IDF forces clearing trees at the border with Lebanon were doing so on the Israeli side, and that such work was routine. Both Lebanon and Israel had pledged to observe the UN's border designation, called "blue line," though neither side fully agrees with it.

This time, when UNIFIL notified the Lebanese Armed Forces about the work about to be done, the Lebanese balked. UNIFIL wanted more time, but the IDF went ahead and the Lebanese fired on them (New York Times, 8/5/10).

Israel's PM Netanyahu said that his secret service had traced both the current firing of rockets at Israel (some of which caused carnage in Jordan) and the prior one, from the Sinai, were done by Hamas units (Arutz-7, 8/5/10).

A reader called my prior articles on the rocket attack biased, because I left out the part about the Mossad having fired the rocket. People on the Arab side often accuse Israel of some Byzantine plot to attack itself in order to gain sympathy and to turn public opinion against the Arabs. In addition, the Arab side has a shame-honor complex that makes it particularly hard for them to omit wrongdoing (see David Pryce-Jones books for more on that). After a while, one learns not to pay attention to Arab conspiracy theory, which is not based on facts and is invariably incorrect. Including Arab conspiracy theory would introduce bias.

Think of the poor logic of this alleged conspiracy! Israel has been attacked thousands of times. Israelis want the government to protect them. The rest of the world does not sympathize with Israel and does not turn against the Arabs. It would make no sense for Israel to attack its own people. Why look for an absurd, complicated conspiracy when jihad is simpler and constant?
 

EX-CIA TO OBAMA: ISRAEL MAY RAID IRAN THIS MONTH

Some ex-CIA officials warned President Obama that Israel may raid Iran this month. They worried that such an attack may set off a wider war involving the U.S., at least as supplier, and possibly ending in Israel's destruction. They chided Obama as having encouraged it by praising Israel. The letter demands that Obama discourage such a raid by condemning it in advance.

Obama's praise was his statement that Israel does not surprise the U.S.. The letter disagreed sarcastically: "'You may wish to ask Vice President Biden to remind you of the kind of surprises he has encountered in Israel,' the letter states — implying that the announcement of progress in a Jerusalem housing project without informing the visiting Biden beforehand is equivalent to a surprise attack on Iraq."

Another alleged surprise was "'feign[ing] fear of an imminent Arab attack as justification for starting [the Six Day War] war to seize and occupy Arab territories.'" Actually, "Then-Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser's closure of the Straits of Tiran, his frequent calls to 'throw Israel into the sea,' and his amassing of 1,000 tanks and nearly 100,000 soldiers on the Israeli border are overlooked in the memorandum, as are the signing of a Jordanian-Egyptian defense pact and Iraqi deployment in Jordan of troops and tanks at Jordan's invitation a week before war broke out. Forgotten, as well, was the Egyptian Army's Order of the Day two days before the war plugging 'Holy War' and the re-conquest of 'the plundered soil of Palestine.'"

The letter accuses Israel of knowing that it need not fear Iranian nuclear power, but just wants regime change. The ex-CIA officials accuse PM Netanyahu of having contempt for the U.S., and of having learned it from predecessors (Arutz-7, 8/5/10).
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/

Concern that an Israeli raid may set off a wider war is valid. That concern should be judged against the effect of not destroying Iranian nuclear facilities. Iran could blackmail countries and wage a more horrible war causing the destruction not only of Israel but of other countries, eventually the U.S..

The valid concern should be debated without regard to the CIA letter, which is obviously misinformed and biased. The U.S. knew that Israel had some housing projects in various stages of approval, the announcement was minor, it did not contradict known Israeli policy, it is not U.S. business, and the whole incident was blown up by the Obama administration then seeking to impugn allies.

The claim that Israel feigned fear of an Arab attack as an excuse to attack the Arabs is false and defamatory. The corrections of the claim show that the war had started by those several Arab acts of war. The whole world thought that Israel would lose that war. Israel would have lost, if not for its pre-emptive air raid. Nor did Israel seek territory. Indeed, it did not let Israelis settle in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza for years, hoping to exchange them for peace.
 

TERRORISTS: ATTACKED TANKER

An Al-Qaida affiliate claims to have been responsible for the puzzling attack on an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. The tanker is dented, but nobody knows how.

If this attack becomes a pattern, oil costs would rise.

The Abdullah Azzam Brigades explained the goal of its attack as delivering a blow to the oil markets and the global economy. In its words, "weaken the global infidel order that has assumed authority over Muslim lands, looting their resources, and to lift the oppression of Muslims." (Margaret Coker, Nour Malas, Summer Said, Wall St. J., 8/5, A8.)

This is another example of global jihad and not caused by Zionism. Many Westerners are slow to realize that Islamist terrorism is a worldwide problem.
 

ISRAEL RETURNING TURKISH FLOTILLA SHIPS

Israel is letting Turkish tugboats come to fetch the Turkish flotilla ships that Israel had sequestered. The government of Israel expects that Turkey would not let other Turkish ships come with the express purpose of attempting to run the partial blockade of Gaza (IMRA, 8/5/10).

A reader had expressed indignation at Israel for not having given back those ships. What obligation had Israel to return ships that illegally tried to run the blockade in order to pave the way for shipments of heavy arms for war on Israel, especially the ship from which Israelis were assaulted.

I anticipated that Israel would return the ship after collecting whatever evidence from that crime scene it could. People demanded an investigation but also demanded that the chain of evidence be broken by releasing the ships, the passengers, and the goods immediately. Those demands were self-contradictory.

About a reader who disputed a statement that Islam oppresses women, by quoting passages from the Koran enjoining Muslim men to treat women well: those passages were general. General statements of principle, which may or may not be implemented, do not validly answer specific statements of problems. As to what treating women well means, that is subjective, not specific. Being often confined to the house, being denied occupations or education, and being considered only half as weighty as a man in giving court testimony are examples of not being treated well. It is a form of apartheid.

Richard Shulman is a veteran defender of Israel on several web-based forums. His comments and analyses appear often on Think-Israel. He provides cool information and right-on-target overviews. He distributes his essays by email. To subscribe, write him at richardshulman5@aol.com and visit his website:
http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-7095-NY -Israel-Conflict-Examiner/x-7

To Go To Top

INTERVIEWS & INVESTIGATION FOR WHY THE PALESTINIANS FLED OUT OF ISRAEL
Posted by Udi Schayat, August 5, 2010.

The attached file are interview & investigation with many reasons for why the Palestinians fled out of Israel in 1948, without Israeli involvement — in most cases (in about 85% of the cases). It includes Dir Yasin EFFECT and facts.

 

"The Deir Yassin massacre is not the cause of the Arab exodus"
David Meir-Levi is a resident of Menlo Park, Calif. He can be contacted at david_meirlevi@hotmail.com.
February 27, 2004
Stanford Daily

Ammar Nayfeh's recent op-ed in The Stanford Daily ("Advertisement misrepresented historical events in Palestine," Feb. 24) is a sad miscarriage of historical justice. Unwittingly, or perhaps not, Nayfeh has regurgitated the standard Arab polemic that passes for pseudo-history in his rebuttal of the David Horowitz ad in The Daily ("The Middle East war is not about a Palestinian state or Palestinian land," Feb. 23). Every paragraph of Nayfeh's op-ed — indeed, almost every sentence — is an erroneous misrepresentation of the origins of the Arab-Israel conflict.

Space does not permit a full and detailed rebuttal of each error; so I will pick the most egregious examples:

1) Nayfeh implies that Theodr Herzl established a principle of eviction as part of the Zionist endeavor, but this implication is false. He did, as Nayfeh correctly quotes, muse in his diary about the possible need to gently relocate, via purchase and employment, some of the local Arabs. So too did Ben Gurion 30 years later. But these private cogitations never became Zionist doctrine or strategy. The fact that the two strongest and most high profile Zionist leaders over fifty years of Zionist activity never once made their musings public, nor tried at any time to effectuate such a strategy with their Zionist colleagues, is a clear indication of the degree to which such musings were an anathema to the Zionist movement and were completely incongruous with Zionist activity. There is not a single piece of evidence that these private thoughts were translated into theoretical or practical policy. To assert that because Herzl once thought of relocating local Arabs means that the Zionist movement intended to do so is to argue irrationally ex silentio.

2) Nayef asserts that it was the creation of the Israeli state that caused the refugee problem. This is false. It is important to recall that on Nov. 29, 1947, the United Nations created two states: Israel for the Jews and Palestine for the Arabs. Had the Arab states accepted the partition plan, not only would there have been no refugee problem, but there also would have been a state of Palestine for the past 55 years. It was only the invasion by the Arab armies that caused the war, and the war led to refugees on both Arab and Jewish sides.

3) Nayfeh asserts that there were numerous massacres during the 1947-1949 war and that these massacres were intended to frighten Arabs into flight — hence the 750,000 refugees seeking safety in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and the Gaza Strip. Although it is true that some modern Israeli and Arab historians make such assertions, there are three ominous factual lacunae that should give pause before lending credence to the claim. First, throughout the 40 years of the conflict from 1948 to the mid-1980's, Arab propaganda focused exclusively on one putative massacre: Deir Yassin. Had there been many massacres, why in the world would the Arab polemic omit mention? Second, one such "massacre" at Tantura, has proven to be totally false. The graduate student at Haifa University who invented the "massacre" was forced to make his sources public, and it became immediately evident that he had fabricated some facts and prompted survivor witnesses for the rest of the evidence he used to document the "massacre." We cannot yet know how many other such "massacres" were fabricated in the same way. Third, the poster child massacre of the 1948 war was also, in part, a fabrication of ex-post facto Arab propaganda. So let's turn now to Deir Yassin.

4) Deir Yassin is used relentlessly by Arab polemicists to explain why 750,000 Arabs fled the war zone. According to the Arab account, aptly summarized by Nayfeh, the Jewish para-military force (Etzel) affected the systematic murder of innocent civilians in a quiet, non-militarized and inconsequential Arab village in order to terrify the Arab population far and wide. While what really happened at Deir Yassin may never be known, there are a number of facts — attested to by the Arab polemicists themselves — which cast light on the nature, motivation and outcome of the attack.

A) The battle at Deir Yassin occurred on April 9, 1948. Before that date, more than 300,000 (by Arab reckoning) Arabs had fled from the Galilee and northern coastal plain into Lebanon and Syria. The cause and effect here is clear. It is unlikely that Deir Yassin was the cause of the flight of almost half of the total refugees. The battle occurred six months after the flight began.

B) The Arab village that was the site of the massacre overlooked the one road from Jewish Palestine to Jerusalem. Arab control of that road would mean the starvation and death of 150,000 Jews living in Jerusalem. When Iraqi troops entered the village on March 13, 1948, their purpose was clear — and the village became a legitimate military target in the battle for Jerusalem. One source indicates that the Iraqis were asked to leave the village. However, there is no indication that they did leave and armed soldiers were in the village when Etzel troops entered.

C) When the Etzel troops entered the village, they mounted a loud speaker on a jeep to warn civilians of their entry. The troops did not block off the several roads that offered egress. It is irrational to suggest that the intent of the battle, therefore, was massacre. No one announces military entry and then lets the masses flee if one intends to massacre the masses. The attack on Deir Yassin was a military operation intended to secure the village, eject the Iraqis and keep the road to Jerusalem open.

D) Based on a variety of sources including first-hand witness accounts, the Iraqi soldiers dressed as women and hid among women and children in private homes in the village. Thus, when the Iraqis opened fire on the Etzel troops, the latter killed innocent women and children in the cross fire. According to international law, the full onus of culpability for the tragic deaths of these innocents rests solely upon the Iraqis and their craven tactic of using human shields. These dead civilians do not constitute a massacre.

E) There were about 17 Arabs who were lined up against a wall and shot. Their corpses were thrown into a nearby quarry. These may indeed have been victims of massacre. However, several accounts indicate that once the Iraqis had surrendered and were herded into the village square, some Iraqis had weapons hidden under their ample female robes. They opened fire upon the Etzel troops. The latter fired back, killing more innocents in the crossfire. Some or all of the 17 assassinated Arabs may have been these erstwhile prisoners who opened fire after surrendering.

F) When news of the battle reached the Arab high command, the spokesperson in East Jerusalem began to broadcast on Arab radio a largely fictionalized account of horrendous atrocities, including gang rape of women, the disemboweling of pregnant women and the murder of their unborn children. Deir Yassin survivors are on record, even on TV, stating that no such atrocities ever occurred. When they intervened with the spokesperson, insisting that he was doing the Arabs a disservice by manufacturing atrocities, his response was: "We must capitalize upon this event, so that other Arab nations will be shamed into sending their armies and liberating us." It is, therefore, clear, that to whatever degree Deir Yassin may have been a motivator in Arab flight, it was not the events of Deir Yassin that caused panic. Rather, it was the lies invented by Arab leadership about Deir Yassin that caused panic. One can hardly blame Etzel for that.

G) Yasir Arafat, in his authorized biography, states unhesitatingly that the Arab leaders waved the Deir Yassin incident in front of the Palestinians like " ... a red flag before a bull. They [the Arab leaders] terrorized us."

So, in sum, while we cannot know all the details, there certainly was much tragic innocent deaths and there may have been some unjustified assassinations as well — it is clear that there was no intent to massacre. Instead, Deir Yassin was a legitimate military objective, much of the tragic civilian death was caused by Iraqi tactics and Deir Yassin was not at cause for the flight of the 300,000 Arabs who left between August and April 1947, nor was it the cause for those who fled afterwards.

5) Arafat, in the same biography, also tells us that the flight of untold thousands of Arabs from the south of Israel was because: " ... they came into our villages at night, forced us out at gun-point, killed our leaders, took our weapons, and marched us into concentration camps." Who did this? The Egyptians. That is how, according to Arafat, the Gaza strip got its 300,000 refugees. Why the Egyptians did this is beyond the scope of this essay — but they did it, not the Israelis.

6) Finally, there was never any intent on the part of the Israelis to ethnically cleanse Palestine of Arabs. During the Rhodes Armistice talks, the Israeli representatives offered to return all of the land that they had conquered in the war — the land that the UN partition plan had allocated for the state of Palestine. All that the Israelis demanded in return was recognition, negotiations and peace. In that scenario, hundreds of thousands of refugees could have come back to their homes. The Arab states refused. It is irrational to assert that Israel planned on driving out all the Arabs when in fact they offered to let the refugees back in.

In conclusion, every one of Nayfeh's assertions appears to be historically incorrect. They are the product of revisionist polemic pseudo-history that has created the un-historical framework needed to justify a 55-year siege of Israel. The great tragedy for the Arabs of the area is that so many have come to believe the lies and to refuse the offer of peace that Israel has re-iterated many times over. Peace begins with trust. Trust begins with truth. It is time to abolish the Arab diatribe and speak truthfully about what happened then, and what is happening now.


"Palestinian and Israelis Interviews on 1948 War and Palestinian fled"
Interview, wrote & translated by Ehood Geva, CA, USA
Edited and further investigated by Sheree Roth, CA, USA
May 10, 2007

First, we are bringing few interviews and articles by Palestinian and Arab leader which accusing the Arab leaders for the orders they put on the Palestinian people to leave their homes and lands:

  • Palestinian who fled Majdel reported that:
    (Statement of son and grandson of man who fled:)
    "Mr. Ibrahim [Sarsur]. I address you as a Muslim. My father and grandfather told me that during the "Catastrophe" [establishment of Israel in 1948 and the expulsion from the land], our district officer issued an order that whoever stays in Palestine and in Majdel [near Ashkelon — Israel] is a traitor, he is a traitor."

    Response from Ibrahim Sarsur, Head of the Islamic Movement in Israel: "The one who gave the order forbidding them to stay there bears guilt for this, in this life and the Afterlife throughout history until Resurrection Day." [PA TV April 30, 1999]

  • Woman who fled Israel in 1948:
    "We heard sounds of explosions and of gunfire at the beginning of the summer in the year of the "Catastrophe" [The establishment of Israel and the expulsion from the land in 1948]. They told us: The Jews attacked our region and it is better to evacuate the village and return, after the battle is over. And indeed there were among us [who fled Israel] those who left a fire burning under the pot, those who left their flock [of sheep] and those who left their money and gold behind, based on the assumption that we would return after a few hours."
    [Asmaa Jabir Balasimah Um Hasan, Woman who fled Israel, Al-Ayyam, May 16, 2006]

  • "Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) charged that the Arab states are the cause of Palestinian Refugees problem" (Wall street Journal, June 5, 2003): ref: Abu Mazen article in the Falestin al-Thawra, official journal of PLO in Beirut, March 1976: " Arab armies entered Palestine.....forced them to emigrate and to leave their homeld ..and thru them into prisons similar to the Jewish Ghettos in Europe"

  • Khaled al-Azm (Syrian Prime Minister after the 1948 war) notes in his 1973 memories: " Since 1948, it is we who have demanded the return of the refugees while it is we who made them leave. We brought disaster upon million Arab refugees by inviting them and bringing pressure on them to leave..."

  • Fuad Abu Higla, then a regular columnist in the official Palestinian authority (PA) daily Al Hayat Al Jadida, wrote an article before an Arab Summit, which criticized the Arab leaders for a series of failures. One of the failures he cited, in the name of a prisoner, was that an earlier generation of Arab leaders "forced" them to leave Israel in 1948, again placing the blame for the flight on the Arab leaders.
    "I have received a letter from a prisoner in Acre prison, to the Arab summit: To the [Arab and Muslim] Kings and Presidents, Poverty is killing us, the symptoms are exhausting us and the souls are leaving our body, yet you are still searching for the way to provide aid, like one who is looking for a needle in a haystack or like the armies of your predecessors in the year of 1948, who forced us to leave [Israel], on the pretext of clearing the battlefields of civilians... So what will your summit do now?"
    [Al-Hayat Al-Jadidah, March 19, 2001]

 

Second, we are bringing Summary of the important point of the following interviews:

  • There were no orders or instructions from the Israeli army, to push Palestinians out of their home or land.

  • There were no direct orders from the top leaders to clear the villages and towns of the inhabitants.

  • Top officers did not instruct anyone in their unit to uproot Palestinians.

  • Israel's leaders understood in 1948 that uprooting Palestinians was not a politically wise thing to do and tried to avoid inhuman actions.

  • Each commander in each village determined for himself what to do, depending on the situation he faced.

  • Thousands of Palestinians ran away during a battle in Zipori. The hundreds that stayed were not pushed out.

  • One interviewer was an intelligence officer who would have known about Israeli policy, orders to push out Palestinians and about every instruction and report. He never got any orders to scare Palestinians or to encourage them to leave.

  • Israelis did not scare the Palestinians into leaving, did not tell them it would be better for them to leave by themselves, and in most cases did not push them to leave. In most cases, the Palestinians left of their own will, village by village. More than eighty percent left on their own, with no Israeli involvement.

  • The same thing happened in 1967, when Israel fought and took over the Golan Heights. The villagers of Tel Phaher fled and ran to Syria before the Israelis reached their village. This escape was similar to the escape of the Palestinians in 1948. There was no political decision by the Israelis to clear out Arab villages.

    However, once the Arabs started fleeing in 1948, the villages fell in a domino effect — one village after another.

Only in a few strategic places like Ikrit, Bir'am, and Idmit, which were on the main road, close to the border, were the people told by the Israelis to leave at gunpoint. These were less than ten percent of all the Palestinians who fled.

  • In most cases, the Palestinians ran away before the Israelis even reached their villages because they believed the Arab propaganda, that the Israelis will kill all of them and rape their women. This is what the Arabs planned to do to the Jewish settlers if they had been able to.

  • One Israeli knew many Arab villagers and visited the villagers often. They considered themselves friends. He received an order from the Haganah (Israeli military organization) to urge the villagers not to leave. He got this task since he was friendly with the Arab villagers and spoke their language.

  • A wealthy Palestinian man owned very large part of north Nahariya land, and he was friendly with his Israeli neighbors. The Haganah suggested to him that he stay, that he would be unharmed, in fact protected by them. The Iraqi army, led by Fawzi Kaukji, was nearby at the time, up to 1 Km from the sea. The son of this wealthy Arab decided to join Kaukji's army to fight the Israelis and the father was afraid and ran away, abandoning his entire land and property.

  • The Israelis shot a single shell with a very old gun toward El Caucadi village. The shell fell in the field, made a loud noise but no damage and the entire village ran away. The soldiers were over 2 Km from the village when the villagers fled.

  • On the other hand, in another neighboring Muslim village (Mazra), the Kaukji soldiers did not enter the village and the people were not scared. The villagers stayed and today enjoy good relations with their Israeli neighbors.

  • Kaukji soldiers occupying the village of Samariya, 1 Km from the Mediterranean Sea, North of Acre, shot into Regba many times. The Kaukji soldiers scared the Arab villagers and convinced them to leave. When the Israeli soldiers attacked the Kaukji army in Samariya and won the battle, the whole village escaped with food still on the tables, well before the soldiers arrived.

  • A small Israeli aircraft 'bombed' the large village of Tarshiha. The bombs were small — mostly grenades. Five minutes after the bombing started all the Palestinians ran away.

  • The Palestinians left their villages because Arab propaganda told them to leave and promised them that when they come back, after the victory of the Arab army, they will be able to rape the Jewish women and take their homes.

  • The Palestinians have named this event Nakba or 'catastrophe'. While the Arabs blame the Israelis for expelling them, ALL interviewees said it happened in just a small percentage of cases. They believe that the Palestinians know that they made a big mistake, know they lost the war and had they stayed, things would have turned out differently for them.

  • The battle and killing at Deir Yassin scared many Arabs, as Arab leaders spread false stories and lies about Deir Yassin, about Israelis raping women and killing all the men. While ~100 Arabs were killed that day, no one was ever raped.

  • Most Palestinians ran away on their own after hearing the false stories spread throughout the villages of massacre and rape in Deir Yassin.

  • Israelis surrounded the cities of Lod and Ramla, on three sides. The Arabs ran away to the West Bank on the open side. No one pushed them out with guns, scared them or entered their homes. The 20% of the Palestinian population that stayed, when the Israelis showed up in Lod and Ramla, were not touched, and are living there even now.

    The Israeli soldiers were ordered not to enter any house in these towns, as the Arabs booby-trapped the doorways with grenades. A soldier entered one of the houses, after hearing a noise inside, and found the beds still warm and food on the table, as people ran away before the soldiers arrived. The Arabs were told by their leaders to be worried about the coming "massacre". They also were scared of being surrounded.

  • The Arabs in Haifa were told officially by the Jews not to leave, when they signed the surrender document of Haifa. Even so, hundreds of boats left Haifa port to Acre and Lebanon. Many trucks, including rented trucks, also left for Acre and Lebanon. The mayor of Haifa came personally to the port to convince the Arabs not to leave, as he cared about them as members of his city. Nevertheless, many left and only few listened to him and stayed. In a few places around Haifa, the villagers stayed also.

    A young boy saw few hundreds small boats in the Haifa bay, heading toward Acco (Acre).

  • General Carmel wrote an official letter to the Arab residents of Haifa City telling them not to leave.

  • There were hundreds of villages south of Tel-Aviv which were taken over by Israelis, who found them empty of inhabitants.

  • Jaffa Arabs began firing into Tel Aviv even before the Arab armies invaded Israel. Jews were killed by snipers shooting from the holy Ba'al Bek mosque tower.

  • Menachem Begin (former Prime Minister) told his Irgun fighters: "In this battle (Jaffa), show no mercy to the enemy, as he knows none towards our people. Spare women and children. Spare the life of anyone who raises his hands in surrender. He is your captive. Do not harm him."

  • Many Arabs left during the battle of Jaffa. They did so without any encouragement from Israel.

  • Arab propaganda did have a role in encouraging them to leave. Their leaders told them: "When the Jews are wiped out you can live in the choicest Tel Aviv homes."

  • In the war the Israelis took over Acre and many Palestinians fled to Lebanon. Many Arabs ran away before the Israelis reached their homes.

  • Arab countries convinced the Palestinians to leave, so the land would be free to be bombed by air and conquered by the Arab armies. Then the Palestinians would return to their homes and land devoid of Jews. Actually, the Arab countries that attacked Israel did not have the intention of returning the land and houses to the Palestinians living there at all, but to annex the land themselves — they wanted to exchange the population of Arab Palestinians with their own people.

  • The Arabs' confidence in success was high. Their imagination was fueled by their 'oriental' love of embellishing stories without concern for truth or reality. Their excitement made people dream about their success in winning a big war.

  • Arab countries attacked Israel and arrived up to 10 Km from Haifa, 22 Km from Tel Aviv, and took part of Jerusalem, while Israel had only four stolen tanks and a few armored vehicles (at beginning of the war). Israel had enough soldiers but not enough rifles and ammunition. Each bullet was a treasure to the poor Israelis.

  • The Iraqi army, led by Fawzi Kaukji, was stopped 10 Km east of Haifa, after a big battle.

  • In Haifa, the front street facing the Arab neighbors had a thick wall, which protected the Israelis from the bullets. This wall was built in response to the bloody attacks on Jews in the years 1920, 1921, 1929 and 1936-1938.

  • Each Arab country wanted to take larger pieces of Israel. If they had cooperated and coordinated their moves, they would have made much better use of their manpower and weapons and would have won the war.

  • Before the war of 1948, all the Jewish settlements were established on lands that were bought at full price from the Arabs.

 

Third: The following are the Interviews and Memories from 1948 Israeli Independence War:

Dov Yermia — former General
6/1/03 Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

Dov Yermia was a General (It was 3rd level from the top) in the Haganah and IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) during the 1948 Independence War, and had personal contacts with Moshe Dayan and Prime Minister David Ben Gurion.

Dov's unit took over 6 villages. According to Dov, there were no orders or instructions to push Palestinians out. Each commander in each village determined for himself what to do, depending on the situation he faced. There were no direct orders from the top leaders to clear the villages and towns of the inhabitants. He did not instruct anyone in his unit to uproot Palestinians nor did he do so himself.

Dov recalls the fight over the village of Zippori, near Nazareth. During the Arab uprising of 1936-39, and again in the 1948 War of Independence, the village was the 'hideout' of Arab squads operating against Jewish settlements in the region under the command of Mahmud Safuri.

On the night of 15th-16th July 1948, the Israel Defense Forces captured Zippori town, during the second stage of a military maneuver known as "Operation Palm Tree", under the command of Hayim Laskow, and its population abandoned the village
(http://www.jafi.org.il/education/noar/sites/tzipor.htm). Dov remembers that most of the people left during the battle. Thousands of people ran away. The Israelis took over the town. The hundreds of inhabitants that stayed were not pushed out, but later they were transferred to the next Arab city of Nazareth. They were settled in part of the city known as the Zippori neighborhood.

Dov was familiar with one organized transfer. After the ceasefire, Arabs in Migdal, a town south of Tel Aviv, on a strategic point on the road to the Gaza Strip, were pushed out. He also recalls one village in the Galilee, near the Lebanon border, where a few Palestinians were murdered and others were told they would be killed also if they do not leave the village.

On the other hand there were also instances of Israelis asking the inhabitants to stay. General Carmel wrote an official letter to the Arab residents of Haifa City telling them not to leave.

While Dov is familiar with a few instances of uprooting and transfers, he maintains that most Palestinians ran away on their own after hearing the horrible stories spread throughout the villages of massacre and rape in Deir Yassin.  

Ya'akov Poondik, a high-ranking officer
December 2000 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

During Israel's War for Independence, Ya'akov Poondik was a high-ranking officer in command of the west Galilee. Ya'akov tells that there were about 900,000 Palestinians before 1948. About 300,000 stayed and about 600,000 left. According to Ya'akov there were no orders to drive the Palestinians out of their villages.

The Israelis on three sides surrounded the cities of Lod and Ramla. The Arabs ran away to the West Bank on the open side. No one pushed them out with guns, scared them or entered their homes. The Arabs were told by their leaders to be worried about the coming "massacre". They also were scared of being surrounded. Lod and Ramla were large cities. The twenty percent of the Palestinian population that stayed when the Israelis showed up were not touched (they stayed there).

There were hundreds of villages south of Tel-Aviv. Ten of these villages were Jewish and the rest were Arab. The Israelis took over the Arab villages, one after the other, finding that most of the inhabitants had left. Those villagers who had stayed were not pushed out.

Ya'akov's son, Uri, adds that an important fact that many people do not know, is that before the war of 1948, all the Jewish settlements were established on lands that were bought at full price from the Arabs and in many cases the poor farmers (falachs) got additional compensation for their land.

It was not until the Arabs, that did not agree to the Division Plan of November 11, 1947 began the war, that things began to change. From that time the process of not listening to reason and abandoning their properties began. Sometimes the Haganah was responsible for helping them do so. Since that moment, Jewish settlements began to grow everywhere, including in neglected Arab villages and towns.  

Shlomo Alfandari, a first-aid soldier
December 2000 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

Shlomo Alfandari, a first-aid soldier, claims that Arabs were not pushed out of their villages in the 1948 War of Independence. Israel understood that it was not a politically wise thing to do, and tried to avoid inhuman actions.

Shlomo was involved in the battle for Jaffa. It was a long battle. Jaffa Arabs began firing into Tel Aviv even before the Arab armies invaded Israel, on May 16, 1948. Jews were killed in the Carmel Market and surrounding areas. Snipers picked off Tel Aviv citizens at their leisure from the holly Ba'al Bek mosque tower. These snipers killed two of Shomo's friends.

Three Israeli defense organizations fought together to take over Jaffa. Fighting alongside the Haganah were the Lehi (Lohamei Herut Israel or Stern gang) and the Etzel (Irgun Zeva'i Le'umi). It was a bloody battle with high casualties on both sides.

On April 24, 1948, Menachem Begin (former Prime Minister and Irgun's top commander) told his Irgun fighters: "In this battle, show no mercy to the enemy, as he knows none towards our people. Spare women and children. Spare the life of anyone who raises his hands in surrender. He is your captive. Do not harm him." According to Shlomo, many Arabs left during the battle. They did so without any encouragement from Israel. Arab propaganda did have a role in encouraging them to leave, which they did in a long convoy. Their own leaders told them: "When the Jews are wiped out you can live in the choicest Tel Aviv homes." In Na'na, a village east of Tel Aviv, on the border of the west bank, (today known as Na'an) just a few elderly Arabs and two blind men remained.

According to Shlomo, twenty percent of the Arabs living in the towns of Lod and Ramla, towns 9-10 miles east of Jaffa, stayed in their houses and are still living in their houses. The other eighty percent left because Arab propaganda told them to leave and that when they come back, after the victory of the Arab army, they will be able to rape all the Jewish women.

The Israeli soldiers were ordered not to enter any house in these towns, as the Arabs booby-trapped the doorways with grenades. Shlomo gave first aid to a few soldiers who were wounded in this way. Shlomo himself entered one of these empty houses, after hearing a noise inside, and found the beds still warm and food on the table, as people ran away before the soldiers arrived.  

Josef and Shoshanna Grinberger, Ehood's parents June 1, 2003 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

During the time of the 1948 Independence War, Josef and Shoshanna Grinberger were farmers, living in Regba, a community farm, North of Acre, near Nahariya. Everyone was trained to hold a rifle and do basic fighting, but mostly they guarded their own kibbutz. Other trained soldiers, who came from outside, went to fight against Samariya.

According to Josef and Shoshanna, the Arab countries that set out to conquer Israel, did not go about it in a very smart way. They felt that each of the Arab countries had their own interests in mind. Each Arab country wanted to take larger pieces of Israel. If they had cooperated and coordinated their moves, they would have made much better use of their manpower and weapons and would have won the war.

Kaukji soldiers occupied the village of Samariya, after an internal fight with the quiet Palestinian people who didn't accept Kaukaji soldiers. Samariya was located 1 mile from the Mediterrenean see, North of Acre, a few meters away from the road to Acre, which was a strategic point. This Iraqi army, led by Fawzi Kaukji, shot into Regba many times. The Kaukji soldiers scared the Arab villagers and convinced them to leave. Israeli soldiers attacked the Kaukji army in Samariya and the Israeli commander was killed. Three Kaukji soldiers were also killed in the fighting and the whole village escaped with food still on the tables, before the soldiers arrived. (The Israelis attacked along the old Turk water aqueduct, which supplied water from Cabri to Acre. The aqueduct is about ten miles long, and built in the same style as the Roman aqueduct. It is still visible today from the main road).

Another village that chose to clear out without seeing any Israelis was El Caucadi. The Israelis shot one shell with a very old gun with ineffective shells toward El Caucadi village (south of Nahariya and east of Regba). The old gun made a loud noise when it exploded but caused minimal damage. One shell fell on the field and the entire village ran away. The soldiers were over 2 Km from the village when the villagers fled. Only a few villages on the border of Lebanon were pushed out by the Israelis because they were on strategic points.

On the other hand, in the quiet Muslim village of Mazra, which was about 1 Km from Samariya, the villagers stayed and today enjoy good relations with their Israeli neighbors. In the mid 1950's, Josef had a Muslim partner named Mohamed living in this village. They shared a small tractor and split the profits equally. The Kaukji soldiers did not enter this village and the people were not scared. The villagers even cooperated with the Israelis. Being good neighbors they met the Israelis in a deep gully in the fields, where it was difficult to be seen, to exchange information. Today there is lots of trading with the Mazra villagers, including the biggest market in the whole area, with mostly Jewish customers coming from Nahariya and the surrounding area.

David Nizan — Intelligence Officer
8/5/00-5/17/03 Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

David Nizan worked as an intelligence officer for the Haganah and the IDF (Israeli Defense Force) in 1948. According to David, Israelis did not scare the Palestinians into leaving, did not tell them it would be better for them to leave by themselves, and in most cases did not push them to leave. In most cases, the Palestinians left of their own will, village by village. More than eighty percent left on their own, with no Israeli involvement.

The Palestinians have named this event Nakba or 'catastrophe'. While the Arabs blame the Israelis for expelling them, Nizan knows that they did not, and believes that the Palestinians know that they made a big mistake. He believes that they know they lost the war and had they stayed, things would have turned out differently for them. They might even have won the war had they stayed.

David relates that the battle at Deir Yassin scared many Arabs. A battle occurred in the village of Deir Yassin, where many villagers were killed and more than thirty Israelis were wounded. Arab leaders spread stories about Deir Yassin throughout the Arab villages. They told stories and lies about Israelis raping women and killing men. While many people were killed that day, no one was ever raped.

David, as an intelligence officer, would have known about Israeli policy or orders to push out Palestinians. It was his job to check out information about the enemy in the field. He received all his information and instructions from the Haganah. In his position he would have known about every order, instruction and report. He never got any orders to scare Palestinians or to encourage them to leave.

David met Aliza Shinerman the evening before she joined the bloody convoy to kibbutz Yechiam, where forty-nine soldiers were killed in an Arab ambush. David saw her body when it was returned to them by the Arabs. They had cut off her breasts. Aliza's brother was also killed in the ambush on this day. In retaliation, the Israeli soldiers went to attack the nearby village of Cabri, 5 Km east of Nahariya, but found it empty. Other villages in the area were also abandoned.

It didn't take too much to spread fear in people involved in the conflict. David remembers when the Lebanese army rolled up in armored cars to attack Kibbutz Manara. One brave Israeli woman stopped the convoy at the entrance gate, shot the commander and the entire convoy was shaken so badly they went back to Lebanon.

Arab countries convinced the Palestinians to leave, so the land would be free to be bombed by air, and conquered by the Arab armies. Then the Palestinians would return to their homes and land devoid of Jews. David believes the Arab countries that attacked Israel did not have the intention to return the land and houses to the Palestinians living there at all, but to annex the land themselves — they wanted to exchange the population of Arab Palestinians, by their own people.

Ze'ev Amit, a soldier
June 1, 2003 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

Ze'ev Amit was a soldier during the War for Independence and became a high school teacher. He is from Nahariya. He summarized the history he knows and teaches: Before 1918 there were no Arab countries. The Turks controlled all the Middle East. On November 29, 1947 the United Nations decided to partition Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab state. In 1938 an international division committee decided that 6000 sq km. would be for the Jews. This area allotted to the Jews was about half the size that Israel is today. David Ben Gurion, Israel's first Prime Minister, accepted this small area. It was better than nothing. The Jews celebrated. There was dancing in the streets even though the area they were given was so small. Arab leaders rejected the partition. They wanted everything. They declared that they will join forces with the armies of other Arab countries and will take over all Palestine.

The Arabs' confidence in success was high. Their imagination was fueled by their 'oriental' love of embellishing stories without concern for truth or reality. Their excitement made people dream about their success in winning a big war.

Seven countries attacked Israel on May 16, 1948, one day after she declared independence:

Egypt — reached Ashdod and Beit Lechem — West Bank
Jordan — Jordan's Arab legion was led by a British colonel — took all the West Bank
Syria — took east Galilee, up to south of Lake Kineret (Galilee lake)
Iraq — Fawzi Kaukji, the commander of the 'rescue and occupation forces' took most of the Galilee up to the north of Acre and east of Haifa.
Lebanon — operated in east and central Galilee
Yemen and Morocco — sent troops to help fight and kill all the Jews

Palestinian leaders told the Palestinian people to leave their homes, properties, and lands, as the plan is to conquer and kill all the Jewish people, at which time they could return home. They would be able to return not only to Jaffa, which was an Arabic city, but also to Tel-Aviv, a Jewish city, and to all the other Jewish cities/villages. These places were to be occupied by seven Arab countries. (Written documentation of these declarations exists). Their 'oriental' imagination was blooming and the Palestinian people believed their leaders. The invasion army had begun to reach their villages.

Israel had only four stolen tanks and a few armored vehicles. Israel had enough soldiers but no rifles and not enough ammunition. The fighting started in November 1947. Haifa was a city divided into an Arab section and a Jewish section. In April of 1948, after a battle of three days, the Jews took over the entire city. The Arabs were told officially by the Jews not to leave, when they signed the surrender document. Even so, hundreds of boats left Haifa port to Acre and Lebanon. Many trucks, including rented trucks, also left for Acre and Lebanon. The mayor of Haifa came personally to the port to convince the people not to leave. Nevertheless, many left, but in a few villages for example, Wadi Nisnas, Faradis, Tira, Taibe and Mazra, the villagers stayed.

After May 15, 1948 the Israelis took over Acre and many Arabs/Palestinians fled to Lebanon. After that the Israelis advanced north to Nahariya up to the Lebanon border. Many villagers ran away before the Israelis reached their villages. This included Samariya where Iraqi soldiers were fighting against the Israelis. Only in a few strategic places like Ikrit and Bir'am, which were on the road, close to the border, were the people told by the Israelis to leave at gunpoint. This was less than ten percent of all the Palestinians who fled.

In most cases, the Palestinians ran away before the Israelis even reached their villages because they believed the Arab propaganda, that the Israelis will kill them and rape their women. This is what the Arabs planned to do to the Jewish settlers if they had been able to.

Arab leaders scared the villages of Um-Farage, Tarshiha, and Achziv, among many others into leaving ahead of the 'awful' Israelis in 1948. In 1967, the same thing happened when Israel fought and took over the Golan Heights. The villagers of Tel Phaher fled and ran to Syria before the Israelis reached their village. After the Six Day War of 1967 was over, Israel offered three days of amnesty to those villagers who wished to return to their villages. Some did, many did not. This flight was similar to the flight of the Palestinians in 1948. There was no political decision by the Israelis to clear out Arab villages. However, once the Arabs started fleeing in 1948, the villages fell in a domino effect — one village after another. During the years, Israel allowed 140,000 Palestinians to return to reunite with their families.

Before 1948, Jews volunteered to become British soldiers. They were called Gapeers. These soldiers helped the British control Arab terror gangs and Arab uprisings. They were issued British rifles, uniforms and horses. In order to smuggle ammunition to the Israelis, these soldiers made up fights, reported losses of used ammunition and received replacement supplies. These were smuggled to the Israelis. Each bullet was a treasure to the poor Israelis. After the British withdrew on May 15, 1948 only a small amount of the weapons and ammunition were transferred to the Israelis.  

Mola Rozental
Dec 2000 Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

During the 1948 Israel War for Independence, Mola Rozental was working on kibbutz "Hachotrim", south of Haifa. Mola estimates that about ninety-five percent of the Palestinian population fled their villages without any Israeli involvement while only about five percent were actually pushed out of their villages.

During the thirties and forties, a Syrian, Fawzi Kaukji, was known for leading a mixed band of Syrian and Iraqi mercenaries in an extended terrorist campaign directed mainly against the Jewish villages. On April 10, 1948, al-Kaukji surrounded the Jewish settlement of Mishmar Ha-Emek. The moral of his officers was beginning to sink as they learned of the death of Abdel Qader al Husseini at Qastel. Word of the Deir Yassin "massacre" was spreading throughout the countryside as well. Fearing that this news would further shatter the moral of his men, al-Kaukji insisted that Arab radio stations broadcast the news of the massacre, in graphic detail, along with news of exaggerated military accomplishments.

Mola tells that during the 1948 war, the Kaukji army convinced villagers to leave. The Kaukji soldiers went from one village to another to convince the Palestinians to leave. Some of the villages that were visited by al-Kaukji's troops were Sameriya, Um Farage, El Caucad, and Cabri. The villagers of Kufer Yasif did not run away even though the Kaukji army soldiers tried very hard to convince them to. To this day, the Arabs of Kufer Yasif are good neighbors, citizens of Israel and much better off then their countrymen who chose to flee. The only towns Mola knows were deliberately pushed out by the Israelis were the villages of Idmit, Ikrit and Biram on the Lebanon border, located close to the main road (strategic places).

Mola recalls that Haifa's legendary mayor at the time, Abba Hushi, urged the Arab residents of his city not to flee during the War of Independence, but to stay instead, and help build a city together with Jewish citizens. He personally went to the port, reached them on their boats, and convinced many of them not to leave.

The fled by boats was confirmed by Moshe Bohrer, San Jose, CA: As a young boy he saw few hundreds boats in the Haifa bay heading toward Acco (Acre).  

Rivka Zimering, Ehood's teacher, Nahariya
June 1, 2003 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

Rivka Zimering was an elementary teacher since 1946 in Nahariya. She recalls listening to the experiences of a man by the last name of Yosifon, who knew many Arab villagers. He visited the villagers often and they considered themselves friends. He received an order from the Israeli military organization, the Haganah, to urge the villagers not to leave. He got this task since he was friendly with the Arab villagers and can speak their language. The order was to convince them they have nothing to be afraid of and they won't be harmed. Most of the villagers fled anyways, choosing to believe the Arab leaders and not the Israelis.  

Andreas Mayer, a soldier
June 1, 2003 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

During the time of the War for Independence in 1948, Andreas Mayer was a soldier, handyman and all-purpose repair person, who worked in many villages, fixing cars, pumps etc. He drove on his motorcycle to the villages and knew many Palestinian villagers.

Andreas tells that the Palestinian villagers he visited were fond of telling and hearing what he calls 'oriental stories' which he describes as big on imagination and false evidence, which they would continue to embellish with more untruths, until by the end they believed their own stories.

In the northern part of Nahariya, a wealthy Palestinian man named Moograbe owned lots of land. He was friendly with his Israeli neighbors. The Israeli defense organization, the Haganah suggested to Moograbe that he stay, that he would be unharmed, in fact protected by them. The Iraqi army, led by Fawzi Kaukji, was nearby at the time. Moograbe's son decided to join Kaukji's army to fight the Israelis. Moograbe was afraid and ran away.

Andreas remembers that small aircraft called Flying Hornets bombed the large village of Tarshiha, which was east of Nahariya. The bombs were small — mostly grenades. Five minutes after the bombing started all the Palestinians ran away, except for two mentally ill people. Andreas recalls that the nearby village of Achziv was empty when the Israelis soldiers arrived.  

Reuven Peri
May 28, 2003 — Interviewed by EG, Edited by SR

During the 1948 War of Independence, Reuven Peri was in Kiryat Mozkin, North of Haifa, on the way to Acre. He was about sixteen years old. He helped to dig bunkers in the ground and to supply materials to the soldiers. Reuven recalls that the war inside the town of Haifa started in November of 1947. In April of 1948 the city was taken over by Israeli Jews in two days of fighting. The Arab citizens were not pushed out, but left for Acre and Lebanon in convoys by their own decision. Abba Hushi, the mayor of Haifa, called for the Arab citizens not to get in the boats in the harbor, which were leaving, and tried to stop the escape to Lebanon. He cared about them as members of his city. Some of them listened to him and stayed but those who left and tried to get back to Haifa later, were stopped on the way from Acre and Kiryat Mozkin.

Reuven relays that the Iraqi army led by Fawzi Kaukji was stopped in Mishmar Ha'emek, ten miles east of Haifa, after a big battle. On the east entrance to Haifa, is the neighborhood of Wadi Rushemia. There is a deep canyon with a bridge across it. The Arabs blocked the bridge. A group of soldiers were stuck in a house for two days next to the bridge. In Haifa, the front street facing the Arab neighbors had a thick wall, which protected the Israelis from the bullets. This wall was built in response to the bloody attacks on Jews in the years 1920, 1921, 1929 and 1936-1938.

Contact Udi Schayat by email at udischayat@yahoo.com

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WIRE SERVICES GET IT WRONG
Posted by Aish NewsLetter Server, August 5, 2010.
 

As is so often the case in any incident involving Israel, official Israeli statements were ignored in favor of Lebanese accusations that the IDF had crossed into Lebanese territory, a theme taken up by wire services such as Reuters, which describes the crane being located on the Lebanese side of the border.

They later issued a correction.

Aish asks, "If wire service photographers were at the scene near the security fence (actually they were there before the firing), did they really not know where they were located?"

Despite the caption correction, a number of media outlets are still using erroneous captions, including The Daily Telegraph, while The Independent even stated that the incident had occurred 'on the Lebanese side of the border in the southern village of Adaisseh.'

The narrative, however, is simple: In an unprovoked attack, Lebanese soldiers fired on Israelis and murdered one soldier.

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A TREASURED NATION
Posted by Feiglin, Moshe, August 4, 2010.
 


The Altar of Joshua on Mt. Eval

And when G-d your G-d will bring you to the Land to which you come to inherit it, and you shall give the blessing on Mt. Grizim and the curse on Mt. Eval. (From this week's Torah portion, Re'eh, Deuteronomy 11:29)

Professor Adam Zartal finished his archeology studies before the Yom Kippur War and soon began his research of the Biblical inheritance of Menashe. In the days after the Six Day War it was still possible to roam freely in the area, and the kibbutznik from Ein Shemer enlisted volunteers to comb the area — meter by meter — in search of archeological artifacts in Samaria. A previous war had left him paralyzed in both legs, but he continued to dig in the area. And his legs and crutches brought him to an amazing discovery: The altar of Joshua on Mt. Eval.

Zartal was not looking for the place where the blessing and curse ceremony had taken place because he did not believe the Biblical story. The Biblical archeologists who had come to Israel from Europe and America at the end of the 19th century had all failed to find the altar. Zartal, who did not believe in its existence, did not even recognize the large, unusual structure he had found.

But it was the altar. All the professional parameters proved it without a doubt. The structure fit the dimensions for the altar recorded in the Mishnah and contained large amounts of bones of pure, one year old animals. Even earrings and signet rings created in ancient Egypt were uncovered at the site.

If Professor Zartal's find had reinforced worldwide academia's views on the Bible, he would have won the Nobel Prize. Instead, he encountered a wall of severe opposition to all the solid proofs that he brought. The reason that he was the subject of academic opposition also appears in this week's Torah portion: Because you are a holy nation to G-d your G-d and it is you whom G-d has chosen to be his treasured nation from among all the nations on the face of the earth. (Deuteronomy 14:2)

Being the children and treasured nation of the Creator of the world is a serious undertaking. It evokes much external and internal opposition. But there is nothing that can change that reality. It is our Jewish destiny and our future — and with G-d's help, we will proudly make it the reality in Israel.

Shabbat Shalom,

Moshe Feiglin

Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) is a group of people inside the Likud party who want to see Israel adopt a more Jewish character. Moshe Feiglin, its cofounder, has emphatically said he does not want a theocracy, but he does want a State based on Jewish values. The Manhigut Yehudit website address is http://www.manhigut.org. To learn more about Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) and to read their plan for Israel's future, visit www.jewishisrael.org. Or contact Shmuel Sackett, International Director (516) 330-4922 (cell)

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REFLECTIONS ON JABOTINSKY
Posted by David Isaac, August 4, 2010.

August 3, 2010 marks the 70th anniversary of the death of Vladimir "Ze'ev" Jabotinsky, the greatest Zionist leader of the last century. A brilliant orator, writer and statesman, he was in addition a linguist, poet and playwright. He was also Shmuel Katz's mentor. Therefore, we quote Shmuel in full on this most remarkable man. The column below appeared in the October 18, 1980 edition of the Jerusalem Post, marking the 100th anniversary of Jabotinsky's birth. (Shmuel eventually did go on to write the biography he mentions — his two-volume "Lone Wolf.")

 

For some time, I have considered writing a biography of Ze'ev Jabotinsky. Immediate preoccupations have interposed delays; but I suspect I may also have shied away from the formidability of the task. This may be the reason why others, intrinsically perhaps more qualified than I, gazing at the picture of Jabotinsky they have built in their minds, and seeing how difficult it is to take in its dimensions, its intellectual and spiritual variety, its profusion of colours — have also not taken up the task.

In his Story of the Jewish Legion in World War I, Jabotinsky recalls that during the campaign in Transjordan a Bedu, caught stealing ammunition, had his ass confiscated. "The men, though dead tired, decided to give it a name...There were more than 50 men named Cohen in the battalion and...their initials exhausted all the letters of the alphabet except X. The ass was consequently named Cohen X...The Bedu demanded a receipt for the confiscated animal...At one stage in my life I studied law...and that is enough to upset a man's balance for the rest of his days: I gave him a receipt. He put it away carefully and took it along to the depot at Jericho, and for weeks afterwards letters went back and forth between G.H.Q. and our battalion relating to Cohen X."

Who ever recalls that Jabotinsky had had a legal education? It is common knowledge that he knew a number of languages. How many people know that in addition to the seven of which he had complete command — Russian, Italian, French, German, Hebrew and Yiddish — he had a reasonably adequate knowledge of at least 20 more, including nearly all the remaining European tongues. He took a profound interest in language, and had a most rare talent in speedily acquiring a knowledge of any language he studied. He surprised Scandinavians by quoting long passages from the Nordic sagas in the original; he electrified an audience in Belgium by delivering his speech in Flemish. The stories told by his friends of his linguistic researches are endless and fascinating.

He could, without difficulty, have been a leader in the field. Yet how small a corner of Jabotinsky did this occupy?

You move your gaze, and you discover Jabotinsky the classical translator — a giant in the realm of poetry. He translated Bialik into Russian (and it was said the translation excelled the original). He translated Edgar Allen Poe into Russian, and his The Raven established him as a Russian poet. He translated Poe into Hebrew. His Annabel Lee, set to music, is sometimes heard on our radio. It is ingenious — and beautiful. Into Hebrew he also translated The Rubayat of Omar Khayam (from Fitzgerald's English rendering) and it is a Hebrew gem. He found time to translate only about one-third of Dante's Inferno — and his translation has been described as probably unequaled in world literature.

His studies in Hebrew gave impetus and shape to the language in the formative years of its rebirth. He was one of the first (if not the first) to write Hebrew poetry with the Sephardi milra accentuation. He gave the early Habimah theatre players lessons in Hebrew diction (and published a booklet on Hebrew pronunciation). He preached the need for writing Hebrew in Latin characters. He studied Maltese in order to help him evolve a system; and he often used it in his Hebrew letters to his son. His little book for English speakers, Taryag Millim, is a light-hearted introduction to the study of Hebrew — in Latin characters.

His literary output in Russian was not inconsiderable. He was 16 when, studying in Italy, he began contributing to one of the big Russian dailies in Odessa. The pen-name he used for his feuilletons — Altalena — soon became well-known throughout the Russian intelligentsia.

He wrote plays and poems and short stories. He wrote two novels, both of Jewish content. One of them, Samson the Nazirite, (published in the U.S. as Prelude to Delilah), surely the most delightful and penetrating fictionalized account of the Samson story — and it is not lacking in allegorical content, startlingly appropriate to this day.

Maxim Gorky is said to have charged the Zionist movement — with having stolen Jabotinsky from Russian literature; indeed when I had the privilege, as a very young man, of a friendly chat with Jabotinsky, he told me that he had "11 novels milling around in my head — but who knows if I shall ever get round to writing them?" He died three years later.

You can turn to Jabotinsky's writings on social questions. He could not devote much time to them: as they related to the shape of society in the Jewish State and the state did not yet exist. Yet his essays contain, inter alia, the complete philosophy of what came to be known as the Welfare State — intertwined with the social philosophy of the Bible.

And his concept of hadar? How many people realize that the ideas he laboured to inculcate in the Betar movement (and in the people at large) provide the answer to all these problems of behaviour which plague our society? Courtesy, civility, flowing from concern and consideration for others, together with punctuality, punctiliousness, neatness and cleanliness — for all his grim pre-occupations with the problems of his tragic period, he sensed the need for impressing the urgency of these qualities in the newly-coalescing Jewish people.

Capacities which would have sufficed for several brilliant and academic and literary careers appear, in the context of Jabotinsky's historic role, as a minor, at most contrapuntal, phenomenon, merely adding depth and shading to the most colourful Jewish leader of the century.

He was indubitably also the most controversial — the most beloved and the most maligned. Seeing far ahead of his contemporaries he inevitably aroused their antagonism and even hatred. His struggles against established opinion and against the Establishment are the stuff and the drama of Zionist history. His public life was a saga. He was a man of utterly unflinching courage, of a natural unassuming dignity, of a warmth of manner which even now, 40 years after his death, one cannot recall without emotion; his faith in the justice and the ultimate victory of the Jewish cause was unassailable, and was unclouded by any calculation of personal fame or profit.

So he began his first great political campaign, in December 1914 — for the creation of the first modern Jewish army unit, to fight alongside the Allies to free Palestine from the Turks (an undertaking for which he was excommunicated from the Zionist Organization — until the venture succeeded). So he continued until his last tragic campaign, two decades later, for the evacuation of the Jews of Europe before disaster overtook them, for which he was vilified by all the other Jewish leaders.

As time goes on the picture of that campaign becomes ever more clearly etched: of Jabotinsky, his heart breaking in the anguish of understanding the horror of the Jewish scene, standing out in lonely eminence against the darkling sky of a Europe rushing headlong to Hitler's war.

In the 20 intervening years, as leader of the Revisionist-Zionist movement, as the inspirer and mentor of the underground Irgun Zvai Leumi, he was the teacher of two generations who played a crucial role in the miracle of our national rebirth. The texture of his teachings, passages from his political thought, find their way, years later, again and again, into the thinking and the articulation of his disciples and his opponents alike.

He did not see the fruit of his labour: the unrelenting cold logic of his mind, expressed in precise, incisive language, yet shot through with the fire of faith, was manifestly that of a prophet.

Thus — prophet, statesman, poet, philosopher, soldier, linguist, novelist, leader of men, living out a life of drama, and of almost continuous tension and conflict — this, briefly stated, is the complexity of his would-be biographer's problem.

Pondering over Jabotinsky — unbidden comes the thought of the quality that apparently moved and predominated in his make-up. In 1937, at the height of his conflict with the official Zionist Organization, he was urged and pressed to restore unity in the movement. But he found the prospect was too slender: and he said, "God's name is not Unity but Truth."

David Isaac is editor of the Shmuel Katz website: www.shmuelkatz.com. Contact him at david_isaac@shmuelkatz.com

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FROM ISRAEL: AN OMINOUS SCENE
Posted by Arlene Kushner, August 4, 2010.
 

Yesterday witnessed the most serious clash on the border with Lebanon since the 2006 Lebanon war; it lead to the death of one member of the IDF and the wounding of another.

~~~~~~~~~~

A bit of background:

The de facto border between Lebanan and Israel, known as the Blue Line, was set in place and sanctioned by the UN in 2000 as the demarcation between Israel and Lebanon: In 2000, Israel called an end to Operation Litani — an operation of 20 years standing, during which the IDF maintained a presence in southern Lebanon as a bulwark against terrorist attacks into Israel's north by Palestinian Arabs. At that time, the UN certified that Israel was no longer in Lebanese territory when the IDF had pulled south of the Blue Line.

(The history of this line — presumably going back to 1923 — is not highly relevent in this context: What matters is that the UN officially sanctioned this as the demarcation between Israel and Lebanon in 2000.)

A fence runs along the border between Israel and Lebanon, but it is not in all areas absolutely contiguous with the Blue Line. In certain areas because of topography (perhaps rocky, hilly terrain), the fence runs south of the Blue Line, inside of Israel. Israel however, has never relinquished claim to the enclaves between the fence and the Blue Line, where it runs north of that fence. In fact, the IDF routinely moves into those enclaves, for maintenance and to consistently clarify the fact of Israeli sovereignty there. Israel's unqualified position is that land south of the Blue Line is Israeli territory.

UNIFIL (the UN Interim Forces in Lebanon) was a presence in Lebanon before 2006. But with the end of the Second Lebanon War and UN Security Council resolution 1701, its numbers were increased and its mandate enhanced: It was to operate between the Blue Line and the Litani River (i.e., in southern Lebanon), essentially at the bidding of/to provide assistance to the Lebanese army, in an effort to prevent Hezbollah from re-arming and operating in southern Lebanon. My readers are well aware of the farce that this has been and we need not visit this issue right here. The essential point is that the UNIFIL is in the area north of the Blue Line and cooperates with the Lebanese army.

What is also of significance here is that when the IDF moves into an enclave between the fence and the Blue Line, it routinely notifies UNIFIL, which apparently routinely notifies the Lebanese army.

~~~~~~~~~~

Yesterday began with a routine movement of the IDF into an enclave between the Blue Line and the fence. UNIFIL had been notified of IDF intentions to remove some trees (that were blocking a surveillance camera on a lookout post in a nearby Kibbutz); this was scheduled to begin at 9:00 AM. UNIFIL notified the Lebanese army, and then, on instructions from the army, requested that the IDF delay a couple of hours.

That delay provided time for one or more officers in the Lebanese army to lay an ambush and to invite media. As the IDF entered the area, snipers began to shoot. Bullets aimed at the head of Lt. Col. Dov Harari killed him. A second officer was seriously wounded but has since been moved out of intensive care.

Israel retaliation was swift: shelling of a military vehicle in the Lebanese border town of Adaisseh killed three Lebanese soldiers; one Lebanese journalist was also killed.

Today, the IDF went back to the area and proceeded with the removal of the trees, not only because those trees required removal, but to make the point clear that Israel was within its jurisdiction to operate there.

~~~~~~~~~~

Several point are noteworthy with regard to this lethal incident. Perhaps most significant is that this is not terrorist Hezbollah we are speaking of, but the regular Lebanese army. While undoubtedly Hezbollah, which is dominant in the area, knew of what was about to take place, it was not directly involved. The implications are huge.

What is more, the presence of the media speaks to the deliberate premediation of the attack on the IDF.

In a departure from the norm, the UN stands with Israel in this case. UNIFIL, the eyes of the UN in that area, has verified that Israel remained south of the Blue Line in Israeli territory.

The question has been raised, however, as to whether UNIFIL, though not directly complicit, knew about the planned attack and did nothing. The possibility most certainly exists, as, over the years, the UN forces in Lebanon have closed their eyes to a great deal indeed (such as the rearming of Hezbollah by Syria).

The irony is that, amidst considerable controversy about UNIFIL's failure to fulfill its mandate, that mandate was just extended by the Security Council in late July.

~~~~~~~~~~

The defense of Lebanon with regard to this incident is that some land below the Blue Line is actually Lebanese territory, and that the IDF had entered Lebanon in defiance of Resolution 1701. They have not a leg to stand on, but Hezbollah and the Lebanese government (which today are one and the same) make claims as it suits them.

~~~~~~~~~~

A position of strength from us is imperative at this point.

From Egypt sources comes the charge that the Grad rockets fired at Eilat and Aqaba were fired by an armed Palestinian faction from Gaza, operating in the Sinai.

Speaking at a press conference today, Southern District Police Commander Yohanan Danino said that Eilat has now been placed on the list of areas threatened by terror.

Contact Arlene Kushner at akushner@netvision.net.il and visit her website: www.ArlenefromIsrael.info

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DUPLICITY OVER SPY 'SCANDAL'; WAR PROVOCATION; THE ISRAEL-ARAB CONFLICT: "RED HERRINGS
Posted by Steven Shamrak, August 4, 2010.
 

Duplicity over Spy 'Scandal'
by Robyn Rosen

The British government has been accused of "double standards" following its reaction to allegations that Russian spies used forged British and Irish passports.

During the trial of 10 Russians who admitted to being spies last month, US Department of Justice papers claimed that one of them, Tracey Foley, "travelled on a fraudulent British passport prepared for her by the SVR (Russia's foreign intelligence agency)".

...When Israel was accused of using forged British passports during the alleged assassination of a Mossad agent in Dubai earlier this year, there was widespread criticism and both the British and Irish governments (and other Israel 'friendly' States) expelled Israeli diplomats.

Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies, said: "Just why this latest passport revelation warrants less attention than the purported forgeries by Israeli spies will validate a growing perception that yet again, Israel is subjected to both international double standards and disproportionate attention." (Anti-Israel meadia screamers are silent on this matter! And nobody cares or questions their professional integrity?)

The Zionist Federation's executive director, Alan Aziz, said: "As usual, double standards are used for Israel and for the rest of the world... time and time again Israel is treated in a distinctly different manner to the rest of the world, and if this is not pure discrimination, I don't know what is."

A spokesman for the Israeli Embassy said: "Knowing the British sense of fair play, we are confident that the same rules will apply to any other country, similarly accused of misusing passports." (Wishful thinking! Anti-Jewish biggots — the United Kindom is the ugliest of them, as it had done everything to distroy Zionists dream — have never cared about fairness where Jews are concerned)

Prison or Golden Cage. British Prime Minister David Cameron has called on Israel to lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip, and slammed the current state of the PA controlled areas as a "prison camp" (He forgot to add "with luxury shopping malls, villas, cars and Kassam rockets". Israel does not want to keep them locked in! Gaza is more like a 'Golden Cage', which these professional refugees do not want to leave and their 'friends' keep them artificially in to prolong the ME conflict!)

Lebanon is Responsible for Hezbollah Actions. Israel will target the whole of Lebanon in any future conflict against Hezbollah, according to its Defense Minister Ehud Barak: "We will not run after each Hezbollah terrorist or launcher. We will see it as legitimate to hit any target that belongs to the Lebanese state, not just to Hezbollah"

War Provocation. Lebanese Army carried out planned sniper ambush. Northern Command Head Major-General Gadi Eizenkut said: "It is our understanding that this was a planned provocation by the Lebanese Army that fired at a force that was inside Israeli territory without any provocation on our part." Dan Harari, a battalion commander, was killed on Tuesday, and Major (res.) Ezra Lakia was badly hurt when the Lebanese army fired on the IDF while its troops were patrolling within the Blue Line that the UN has marked out as the international boundary.

Food for Thought. by Steven Shamrak

I have no ill wishes toward Arabs, even after all that they have done against Jews. The main goal of Zionism is to reunite Jewish land and live in peace. This will not happen with Arabs living on Jewish land. Jews have changed desert into fruitful land and Israel has become one of the world's leading states. With the annual budget of billions of dollars of the international help, why can't Arabs do the same in Sinai?

Success of Media War is Self Betrayal! American Jewish lobbyists have been convinced to take a pro-Palestinian Authority position, and to ask US President Barack Obama to turn up the pressure on Israel, according to PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. The lobbyists "told me that I had created a revolution among American Jews, and that they had decided to go to President Obama and tell him: there is a Palestinian partner for peace — but is there an Israeli partner?" Abbas said. The US Jewish leaders Abbas referred to were members of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organization, the Anti-Defamation League, and the left-wing Americans for Peace Now and J Street organizations. (None of these Jewish organizations have come to a President of the United State and told him that Palestine is Eretz-Israel and it is time for Jews to reclaim their land and remove Arab occupiers from Jewish land!)

Israel's Left Undemocratic Blindness. MK Nachman Shai (Kadima) sent a request to the head of the Israel Journalists Council, retired judge Dalia Dorner, asking that she ensure that the Israeli media hold off reporting on the health of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. (Jewish leftists are the defenders of the free speech only when it suits their political agenda. That is why they are against revealing of political uncertainty of the peace with Egypt)

Fighting American Jihad. As many as 70,000 blogs have been shut down as the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation targets online terrorism. Materials taken offline were bomb-making instructions and a list of Americans targeted for assassination. The material was "potentially inciting dangerous activities." The FBI recently warned that domestic terrorism is among the foremost threats facing America.

What was the Noise About? In stores across Gaza, Israeli products in shiny packaging cram window displays, while cash registers rattle. These days, Hebrew-brand names are everywhere in the coastal enclave, replacing goods smuggled from Egypt through a network of tunnels. (Was the boycott of Israel's goods just another Islamic fake propaganda stunt? They are so good at making smoke-screens!)

Don't Blame Israel — You are not Safe Anywhere. Al-Qaida in North Africa said it has killed French engineer, Michel Germaneau, abducted in Niger in April. The group is also holding two Spanish aid workers, Roque Pascual and Albert Vilalta, who were taken hostage in Mauritania in November.

Environmental Terrorism — PA Pollution Ruins River. Pollution from towns controlled by Palestinian Authority is ruining natural areas in the Binyamin region, and the Israeli government allows the situation to continue. Residents of the PA town of Anata near Jerusalem dump their trash in a pond that is known to be filled with sewage. The PA apparently does nothing to enforce proper disposal of trash in the area. The complaint came shortly on the heels of a similar warning regarding pollution in the Jordan River, specifically in Qasr al-Yahud, a site considered holy to Christians.

Anti-Israel Riots are Used to Protect Arab Criminals. Dozens of Arabs rioted in the City of David (Silwan) neighbourhood on Tuesday night. The rioters attacked border police officers who were running after several criminal suspects. (Quite often this fake nation has been using anti-Israel rioting to cover criminal activities of its members)

Hypocrisy of the Headlines:

Now Israel risks losing its friends... — They are not true friends if it is so easy to loose them!

The Israel-Arab Conflict: "Red Herrings"
by Martin Sherman

Israel is continuously accused by its detractors of "occupying" Palestinian territory and "usurping" Palestinian land by means of an "expansionary settlement policy."

"Occupation" and "Settlements" have thus become the buzzwords by which to denote, to decry and defame Israel' s control of the territories across the 1967 armistices lines. This prevailing custom is wildly at odds with the realities that forced Israel to seize these territories in an unequivocal act of self defense against threats of annihilation, in classic pre-emptive exercise of the right of "anticipatory self defense."

A 2003 article "Jus ad Bellum: Law Regulating Resort to Force ", published by the American Bar Association, sets out the rather stringent conditions for the legitimate exercise of "anticipatory self defense." It stipulates that the necessity for action must be "instant, overwhelming, and leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation." ...self-defense may justify use of force under the following conditions: an attack is immediately threatened; there is an urgent necessity for defensive action; there is no practicable alternative, particularly when another state or authority that legally could stop or prevent the infringement does not or cannot do so..."

There is clearly not doubt that these conditions were met (by Israel) in June 1967 (and other conflicts).

The declarations of Arab leaders, before Israel held a square inch of territory now claimed to be "occupied," show irrefutably that "an attack was immediately threatened" and that there was indeed "an urgent necessity for defensive action." Furthermore, there was clearly no practicable alternative, particularly when another state or authority that legally could stop or prevent the infringement did not do so..." (Since the UN had, at Cairo's behest, removed its troops from the Israeli-Egyptian border (to facilitate destruction of Israel); and the United States and other maritime powers refused to remove Egypt's blockade of the Straits of Tiran (to allow escalation of the conflict), and to honour their commitments to allow Israel the right of navigation in the Red Sea.)

On March 8th 1965, Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser proclaimed: "We shall not enter Palestine with its soil covered in sand. We shall enter it with its soil saturated in blood."

&on May 20, 1967, Gen. Hafez al-Assad, Syria's Minister of Defense, and later President, boasted: "Our forces are now entirely ready....to initiate the act of liberation itself and to explode the Zionist presence in the Arab homeland ...the time has come to enter a battle of annihilation."

On May 27, Nasser declared: "Our basic objective will be the destruction of Israel. The Arab people want to fight."

And four days before the outbreak of war, on June 1, 1967, Iraqi President Abdul Rahman Ali (later killed by Saddam Hussein) threatened: "The existence of Israel is an error which must be rectified. This is our opportunity to wipe out the ignominy which has been with us since 1948. Our goal is clear — to wipe Israel off the map." (Creation of a Palestinian state has definitely not been their aim!)

Therefore, it was not Israeli aggression but unequivocal Arab aggression that led to the events which precipitated Israel's takeover of territories across the 1967 frontiers, an act of clearly legitimate anticipatory pre-emption of that aggression. (And now the time has come to free Eretz-Israel, Land of Israel, from Arab occupation and reunite Jewish land!)

Steven Shamrak was involved in the Moscow Zionist movement. He worked as a construction engineer at the Moscow Olympic Games project and as a computer consultant in Australia. He has been publishing an Internet editorial letter about the Arab-Israel conflict since August 2001 and has a website www.shamrak.com. He can be reached by email at StevenShamrak@gmail.com

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THE ISLAM I LEFT BEHIND
Posted by Amil Imani, August 4, 2010.
 

Looking back, I see no particular time or event that, in one stroke, severed my link with Islam. There was nothing nearly as dramatic as what reportedly happened to Paul on the road to Damascus transforming him from a rabid Christian persecutor to a devoted follower of Jesus.

My alienation with Islam started as far back as I could discern things. More to the point, I never embraced Islam in the first place, although I was born and raised in a Muslim family.

I believe in a modified version of Occam's razor, popularly known as the law of parsimony. To me, an explanation with the fewest assumptions is either the correct one or the preferable one. The best answers, more often than not, are the simple answers.

My search for answers has taken me on a journey of discovery in the competing, crowded, and confusing marketplace of ideas. I noticed a universal human need to believe in some power or forces beyond ourselves and beyond the finite and the corporal. If there were no God, we humans would make one up, it is said. In order to satisfy this seemingly innate need, three major contentions have emerged: Rejection-ism, characterized by dismissing any and all gods; Theism, positing a god who created the universe, set it in motion, and let it play out without interfering in it; and God-ism, with many gods, that demanded a super-god to sort them out.

Of the three camps, God-ism seemed to me the most attractive and troubling at the same time. And Islam's God-ism — Allah-ism — steeped in superstition, replete with nonsensical explanations, and discriminatory Sharia law, repulsed me. All I needed to guide my life was contained in the ancient Zoroastrian triad of good thoughts, good speech, and good deeds. The Ten Commandments are a sensible extension of the above triad and the Universal Charter of Human Rights is its further elaboration.

Things Islamic not only did not resonate with me, they often clashed head on with what I valued and loved. What appealed to me and even enchanted me were more often than not taboo in Islam or anathema to the creed. I loved life, beauty in all its forms, poetry, the ancient Iranian culture and traditions. I loved laughter, celebrations of joy such as birthdays, our yearly festivities of Nowruz, my favorite that lasts for thirteen days. Nowruz, this ancient festival, has been celebrated for thousands of years by my people; it ushers in the spring, welcomes renewal of life, and expresses optimism for the year ahead to bless us with good health, abundant food, family, and friends in the land of a civilized free people.

I owe my parents a great debt of gratitude for not pounding into me a blind belief. They allowed, and even encouraged me to think for myself, to chart my path in life. Father was my model. He treated Mother and the girls as unquestioned equals. Mother, by her deeds, taught me that my friends, who happened to be Muslims, Jews, Christians, Baha'is and Zoroastrians, were every bit as worthy and Iranian as we were. She welcomed them all to our home and often at our table.

From very early on, I was troubled by Islam. It labeled people who were all alike differently and built walls separating them instead of bringing them together. Islam, the dominant religion of my native country, stigmatized non-Muslims and even persecuted them. I began questioning the value of religion. I couldn't see much in Islam that attracted me and I knew just about nothing regarding the religion of my friends and neighbors. I sought answers, not from the mullah at the mosque because I had a feeling I wouldn't like his answer anyway. I had heard their line more than I cared to. I began reading as widely as I could and it helped.

I discovered that, historically, as far as it can be determined, all human groups lived by codes of beliefs. The codes were far from universally uniform, either in context or formality. Yet, they all served the critical function of prescribing behaviors that enhanced the welfare of the group while proscribing those that undermined it. In tandem with the emergence of the code of conduct was the practice of rituals. While the code of conduct secured order within the group, rituals gave it a sense of identity, essential for solidarity of the "in-group" against the ever-present threats of the "out-group."

Over time, the code of conduct and rituals merged, to various degrees, to serve the group. Some examples are religious ceremonies, secular observances, and the mixtures of the two.

Codes of conduct require enforcement. The physically strong, and perhaps more cunning, emerged as group leaders and enforcer — Chiefs, Sheiks, Earls, Lords, and Kings are continuations of this line of authority. Yet, all along there was a realization that an authority or authorities with much greater powers transcended that of the human. The ancient Greeks' various gods and the pre-Islamic idolaters of the Arabian Peninsula represent this line of thinking.

Among some human groupings, the utilitarian value of prescriptions and proscriptions for the group evolved to the belief in opposing superhuman powers. Good things, such as bountiful rain, great harvest, and plentiful game, for instance, were seen as the offerings of the benevolent superhuman, while famine, earthquakes, plagues and so forth were attributed to the actions of the malevolent superhuman. The Zoroastrians concept of Ahuramazda — the god of good — and Ahriman — the lord of evil represents this line of belief.

At some point, monotheism appeared on the scene. The Abrahamic religions represent this line of development. One Supreme Being was posited as the all-powerful, all-everything author of the universe. It simplified things greatly. No need to supplicate many gods, or please one and antagonize another. This Supreme Being communicated with humans through intermediaries of his choosing, some so claimed. And through these intermediaries, he prescribed laws and ordinances. Obedience to his laws attracted his blessings and disobedience incurred his wrath, often administered by human agencies in this world and more to come in the purported next world.

The God of the monotheist is a hands-on God. And Islam's Allah is extremely hands-on. He leaves virtually no room for anything or anyone to do anything without his full knowledge and authorization. In the Quran, it is explicitly stated that not even a leaf falls from a tree without the decree and knowledge of Allah — just one of innumerable assertions that define the all-everything Islamic superhuman. In more recent times, another form of evolution appeared on the scene. The work of Sigmund Freud represents this line of development. God was marginalized. God was reduced to a hypothetical father figure who would reward or punish the children, depending on their actions. Yet, a form of duality was posited within the individual: the Id representing the impulsive, the ungoverned by the code of conduct, the amoral, devoted exclusively to self-gratification, and the Superego standing for the law-abiding, the moral, and the caring for others.

My love of reading the inexhaustible treasure of Iranian exquisite poetry helped nurture me. Along the way, I learned about and revered Cyrus the Great and a host of other Iranians who personified all that is good and in line with the great benevolent God, Ahuramazda. The more I learned and witnessed about Islam, the more it repelled me, for it is much more in accord with that of the agent of evil, Ahriman.

Islam glorifies death by calling many of its martyrs the soldiers of Allah. Islam preaches superiority of the "we," and inferiority of the "other." It is a creed steeped in superstition, demands blind obedience to authority, and sanctions just about every form of freedom — the very precious gift of the Creator Ahuramazda that makes us humans. Everything in Islam is in black and white. One is either Muslim — good — or non-Muslim — bad. Men are superior; women are subservient. This life is worthless and should be offered for the pleasure of Allah as defined by the clergy.

Islam is a creed of an ignorant people of a primitive age. It is fixated in time and place; it harbors the ambition of taking the 21st century world back 14 centuries and ruling it by its dogma of intolerance, injustice and death. Yet, Islam is not only an obsolete vestige of a defunct era, but itself is an infinitely fractured belief that can hardly put its own home in order. The numerous Islamic sects are at each other's throats; sub-sects and schools despise one another as much as they hate the non-Muslims. Hatred, not love, drives Islam.

I came to the realization that the root cause of my peoples' degradation and suffering is Islam. It is a creed that was imposed on an enlightened, tolerant and free people at the point of the sword by savages hailing from the Arabian Peninsula during the seventh century with promises of booty and women in this world and glorious eternal sensual rewards in the promised paradise of Allah in the next. With each passing day, I rejoice more and more in my good fortune; in my ability to avoid the yoke of Islamic slavery and its blinders that imprisons a billion and half people by walls of superstition, hatred of others, and celebration of death.

It is distressing to witness Islam making headway in the traditionally non-Islamic lands. Masses of brainwashed faithful semi-literate Muslims, badly underserved in their own native lands, are moving to countries where the "infidels" welcome them with material offers denied to them in their own homeland as well as the liberty to subvert the very societies that give them refuge.

Even more distressing are those good-hearted simpleton non-Muslims who are up in arms defending the rights of Muslims to practice their religion in free societies such as the United States of America. These well-meaning, badly misguided folks don't realize that practicing Islam requires subverting and destroying any and all non-Islamic beliefs and practices. All one needs to see this deadly aspect of Islam is to examine how Islam is practiced in places such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia, and even the so-called more moderate Islamic states such as Egypt.

The overflowing treasuries of the oil-enriched Islamic rulers finance legions of pampered clergy with a highly vested interest in maintaining and promoting the creed. Islamist apologists and mercenaries are collaborating shamelessly with the clergy in portraying a greatly deceptive picture of what Islam is in order to win a highly coveted prize — the West.

Truth can be distorted and even hidden for a time. Yet, it invariably emerges. Thus is the case with Islam. Although it is, by its deceptive means, attracting some adherents in foreign lands, it is losing them by the tens of thousands in its own region as more and more people see for themselves the evil belief and deeds of this creed. It is from the ranks of the newly emancipated, that voices of alarm are raised to warn mankind about the true nature of Islam. Even a cursory examination of the teachings of Islam, the life of Muhammad himself, and the conduct of Muslims in the world provide irrefutable evidence to the fact that this primitive creed, called religion, is anathema to all that is cherished by civilized and fair-minded human beings.

I am not against Muslims. I condemn Islam and those who support and promote it. In the same sense that I am not against slaves, I am against slavery and those who advocate and advance it. The very practice of Islam is tantamount to perpetuating and practicing slavery. Slavery enslaves the body, while Islam entraps the mind. Both ideals and practices are abhorrent and detrimental to the realization of our highest hopes as human beings.

I left Islam behind, because that's where it belongs — behind in the dustbin of history. I summon Muslims to cast off this baseless, harmful, misguiding belief. I urge all people to resist Islam's encroachment, not to be deceived by its sanitized version presented in the non-Islamic lands, and to encourage Muslims to free themselves from its shackles.

Amil Imani is the author of Obama Meets Ahmadinejad. Contact him at amil_imani@yahoo.com This article is archived on his website at
www.amilimani.com/index.php?option=com_content& task=view&id=186&Itemid=2

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CORRECTING PR DISTORTIONS
Posted by Robin Ticker, August 4, 2010.
 

This is the message we must get out there. The Palest