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Posted by Arlene Peck, July 31, 2006.

I'd rather not be able to say, "I told you so." Yet, it's difficult not to gloat when I see how the rest of the world is "reluctantly" beginning to realize that something must be done soon about the evil and crazy culture that is attempting to thrust itself upon the rest of us. If not, we're all going to be in deep doo-doo...

For the past five or six years, I've been writing about "us" as a confused and myopic generation, that didn't have a clue about the enemy it was facing. Belatedly, I believe that we in the 21st century are finally recognizing some uncomfortable truths, which may save our lives yet; that the culture of militant Islam, rabidly foaming at the mouth from across a yawning abyss of cultural and ideological implacability, is rooted and cemented somewhere in the 7th century.

We have woken too late, only to discover that our culture is still in the midst of a crusade, which these poor people are conditioned to undertake (to their own detriment) by truly evil "religious" leaders, those carrion-eaters who call themselves Imams and Mullahs, and by corrupt politicians. Gawd! A crusade! Perhaps Mel Gibson could make a movie addressing that!

Come to think about it.. I told you about him too!

One of our major problems in the West is that we have a leftist-fed "sound byte" mentality, which hasn't been able to grasp the importance of "tribalism," the basis of Arabic culture, still continuing to hold complete sway over primitive countries such as Iraq, Iran, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia. This is the mentality that underpins everything there, complete loyalty to the clan. That, and submission to a God they say is no friend of the West!

We Westerners have been living under a delusional cloud of stupidity. How else to explain the many nations and leaders who have been so blind to signs that have been glaringly clear and obvious, for so long? For the past six years I have been warning that anti-Semitism has been growing at a rapid rate among Arabs and Europeans, the latter in a sort of dj vu, totally reminiscent of pre-war Nazi Germany, and that this anti-Semitism is being actively acted out in the so-called Arab-Israeli conflict. The Islamic culture has never made a secret that it has targeted all Jews for extermination; after all, it is called for by their prophet and holy writings. Although pre-dating 9/11, since Americas attention was so barbarically drawn to Islamist demands, the world stage has been overflowing with Islamist leaders who declare this. The question remains: Why did we not heed their words?

I can only say that, as expected, for far too long, it didn't seem to bother anyone too much. However, I now think many Western nations are beginning to take off the blinkers they've been wearing and are facing up to the fact that these ongoing Islamist actions are not about land issues but, religion. Their Koran tells the faithful 1.4 Billion Muslims that anyone who won't convert must die. And some are now mindful of another truth; that after the Jews, Christians and Hindus are next in their sights. They have been burning churches and killing Christians in the Horn of Africa for years now, with barely a word of protest from Western Nations.

In light of these facts, how appalling that, due to world pressure, the Israeli Defense Force is forced to fight this, and all of its wars, like a prizefighter in the ring with one arm tied behind his back. Had the United Nations followed up on resolution 1559, agreed to by all parties, instead of sitting by watching for the past six years while Hezbollah armed themselves to the teeth, Israel would not have to be fighting this war. A war, which no one disputes, was started by Hezbollah.

Incidentally, I was in many of those same "nests of vipers" cities such as Tyre and Sidon as a journalist, when I was in Lebanon reporting the conflict in June of 1982. These border towns aren't neighborhood communities. They are enemy territory used for the explicit purpose of launching rockets into Israel! Don't tell me about agreements! The Arabs only know to begin negotiations after the terms have been agreed. Anything else is considered "weakness" by this culture of war. Fortunately, many people are recognizing that the Middle East is littered with agreements that just did not work.

Are they recalling our history, remembering that, if the United States and our allies in the Second World War not gone acted decisively and ruthlessly in places as far apart as Iwo Jima and Normandy, we'd all be speaking German today, or maybe, Japanese. No one back then spoke of disproportionate damage to the enemy. All that was important was that the west and our way of life were in immediate danger. Today, many are waking up to the fact that Israel and the West are in a fight for their lives with terrorists driven by fanatical adherence to the Koran, all around the world. Radical Islam started this latest outbreak of violence, and unfortunately, it has fallen, again, on Israel to finish it. The Jewish state must not be pressured to stop this offensive until the enemy is disarmed as they were supposed to be, under UN Resolution 1559, when Israel left Lebanon six years ago. Again, it was not the fight that Israel started.

What Israel knows and the West has to acknowledge, is the absolutely vital necessity for Israel to win this war. A cease fire allows Hezbollah to declare itself the winner. Inside the Islamic world, it will be seen no other way. The United Nations and the European Union is "the enemy" and has always acted in a manner designed to bring about nothing less than the demise of the Jewish state. The Vatican, which incidentally has enough on its plate internally and internationally, never-the-less finds time to condemn Israel. All these paragons of virtue remain blinded to one incontrovertible fact; that Israel is in a fight for her life and is in a defensive position. There is no such thing as "proportionality" in a fight for survival.

The recent shooting attack at the Jewish Federation in Seattle where one innocent person was killed and six wounded is a perfect example of what where facing. Carried out by the son of one of the founders of the Muslim Mosque in that city, I wonder to myself, how proportionate is that? Now that, once again, almost 5 years after 9/11, Islamist attacks are again being seen on our shores, will there be an outcry from my country? I doubt it. However, if churches and Christian Ministries are next, perhaps attitudes might change. Only then, might we begin to admit, to ourselves first, and then publicly, that Israel and its little strip of land has nothing to do with the Muslim craziness.

Since when did the media wag the tail of the dog? Now that they on a cease-fire with Hezbolah with whom is Israel to negotiate? Is Israel to sit down with terrorists who represent no sovereign nation? Apart from the inanity of that idea, as Hezbolah is an internationally proscribed terrorist organization, Hezbollah would only use this time to re-group and re-arm.

And how, exactly, is Israel fighting this war? I know of no other army that warns the enemy by megaphone, television, leaflet, radio and even calling people on the phone to tell them that they must leave specific areas because they were going to be attacked. Only Israel would do this to avoid large civilian casualties. Then the world condemns them for defending their country against this terrorist militancy/malignancy.

Drastic times...drastic solutions. I feel now is the perfect time for Israel to annex Gaza and the West Bank, and expel all Arabs. Beginning soon, all Israelis must have the security of knowing that those in Gaza will no longer have the leisure of running into Israel and bombing or kidnapping hostages. The same pamphleting campaigns, which warn of Israeli retaliations, should now carry a new message. If they insist on continued campaigns of terrorism and warfare against any Israeli territory... anything, then ten percent of Gaza will be taken back by Israel. Be specific; which village, which well, which mosque, which street to which street... and then do it, the next time they 'test' Israeli resolve.

Transfer "the Arab enemy within" to any of the surrounding Arab countries. Let us see how well they like living in a Muslim controlled country. And, like a mantra... Let us repeat that this is only one front in a global aimed at global Muslim domination! World War III has been going on for decades. We've just been so busy entering a new millennium that this monster facing us has only belatedly gotten our attention!

Arlene Peck is an internationally syndicated columnist and television talk show hostess. She can be reached at: bestredhead@earthlink.net and www.arlenepeck.com

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Posted by Yuval Zaliouk, July 31, 2006.

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is the most moral and scrupulous military in the world, bar none!

No army will risk the lives of its soldiers in order to save enemy's lives in the midst of a raging war.

The Geneva Convention clearly puts the blame on those who use civilians as human shields, as Hezballah is doing with the South Lebanese civilian population. This practice is defined as war crimes.

Following, please find an anguished letter from my friend Linda Olmert.

Now, is it not time to stop blaming Israel on a whim and begin to stand by her with full conviction?

Dear Friends

I have not written in the last weeks. So many words were spilled onto the internet, most said it all.

And although there are things that words can not possibly cover, I have come to the point that I need to try.

* What words can possible convey the heartsick and pain of visiting Nahriya last Thursday and finding that the silence of those who had fled was so much more audible than the sounds of tourists flocking to the town in previous years. We invest in building, planting and growing, and in a moment, a few madmen, crazed with their lust for our blood and the ruin of our accomplishments, invest their all in destruction.

* What words can convey the gut curdling frustration at the tears of the world for the Lebanese, who have aided and abetted the terrorist for years in allowing them to build their factories of destruction under cover of their houses, while the unprovoked destruction of our economy, homes and businesses and the loss of our lives is considered not "worthy of such a strong attack

* What words can convey the heroism and quiet determination of aged Holocaust survivors, shrunk and wrinkled with age, the burden of their survival, and building the State of Israel through so many wars. Replaying the dialogue of their youth and reliving the 70-year old dilemma of whether to stay or to go - we watch them gather the last of their strength yet again, to vow that from this place they will not move- not from a million rockets.

* And what words can convey the heartbreaking rejection from a world that can see the lengths to which Israelis go to save civilian lives of the enemy, at the cost of our own soldiers and yet condemns us when there is loss of life despite our unrealistic efforts. The terrorists know of our sensibilities, so they hide among civilians - no one else would care! I once asked a teacher of mine: the Tanach was written in a violent age - why are the Hebrews exhorted to wipe out the enemy - that is what people did then, and it seems so cruel now. And the teacher answered that god knew the hearts of his people - that what others did naturally, we needed to be told to do - and still we did not do it. That doing the cruel things that a sovereign nation must do to survive did not come naturally to us. And yet it is us that the world condemns.

I could fill a book with the words that I do not have for this latest instalment to our tragedy.

Instead, I ask that you go to this address, where you can find the Ethical Code of the Israel Defence Force --

Contact Zuval Zaliouk by email at yz@glasscity.net

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Posted by David Nathan, July 31, 2006.

This was written by Alan M. Dershowitz, who is a professor of law at Harvard and the author of "Preemption: A Knife that Cuts Both Ways." It appeared in The Jerusalem Post yesterday.

As Israeli ground forces cross over into Lebanon in an effort to destroy Hizbullah's capacity to fire rockets and missiles at Israeli civilians, the president of Lebanon Emile Lahoud is taking sides and flexing his nation's muscle for the first time.

He told a German magazine that he "respects Hizbullah" and its terrorist leader Hassan Nasrallah, and he has threatened to turn the Lebanese army against Israel. This would cause a self-inflicted, and perhaps lethal, wound on Lebanon.

Militias associated with several Lebanese political parties -including the party of the speaker of the parliament and of the Lebanese Communist Party - have already joined Hizbullah in attacking Israel.

Up until now, the Lebanese government has claimed that it has no real army, not even one capable of controlling the Hizbullah terrorists who have "occupied" southern Lebanon. It has claimed an inability to enforce UN resolution 1559 which, adopted by the Security Council in 2004, "calls for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias," meaning Hizbullah. And it has disclaimed any responsibility for Hizbullah atrocities against Israeli civilians and kidnapped soldiers.

NOW, ALL of a sudden, its tune has changed. Suddenly its army is strong enough to take on Israel, and it is willing to collaborate with the terrorist organization from which it previously sought to disassociate itself. Nor can the Lebanese government plausibly argue that this about-face has been caused by the Israeli decision to have its ground troops cross over into Lebanon.

Intelligence sources have confirmed that elements of the Lebanese army have been working with Hizbullah terrorists from the beginning of this conflict, providing the terrorists with electronic, radar and other logistical supports.

The Lebanese government is not as innocent - not as much of a victim - as it has gotten the international community and the media to believe. It is playing a dangerous and two-faced game of both sides against the middle.

Large segments of its Islamic population in Lebanon support Hizbullah, while much of its Christian population is terrified of the radical Islamic goals of Hizbullah but too intimidated to speak out. Israel and the United States do not want to turn Lebanese moderates into anti-Israel and anti-American zealots, but the tragic reality is that moderates have little influence in Lebanon these days.

Israel made a serious blunder by worrying too much about the impact its military actions might have on Lebanese public opinion, and was consequently quite tentative in its initial response to Hizbullah rockets.

If this decision was made for military reasons, I would have insufficient expertise to question it. But it appears that military considerations may have been compromised in order to influence Lebanese public opinion.

If that was the reason, it was self-defeating.

ISRAEL WILL be criticized regardless of what it does or refrains from doing. If it succeeds in destroying Hizbullah, it will be criticized for the civilian deaths it caused, even though the civilian deaths are the fault of Hizbullah for operating from civilian population centers.

If Israel fails, it will be criticized for leaving the poor Lebanese in the grip of an emboldened Hizbullah.

Israel was attacked from areas that it does not occupy. It gave up this land as part of what peace-lovers in Israel believed was a swap of "land for peace." But Hizbullah and Hamas turned it into "land for rocket launching and kidnapping."

Israel is entitled to fight back and defend its citizens from aggression, as every other democracy would do.

The media and international organizations are focused on the plight of the Lebanese who have had to leave their homes, paying little attention to the thousands of Israelis who have had to leave their homes in Haifa, Safed, Nazareth and other cities in range of Hizbullah rockets. They are obsessed with comparative body counts, as Hizbullah complains that more Lebanese than Israelis have been killed.

Would they be satisfied if more Israelis had been killed? Would that render Israel's actions more proportional? Should Israel be blamed for having built bomb shelters for its civilians, while Hizbullah has built bunkers only for its leaders, leaving civilians exposed?

Should Hizbullah be given credit for deliberately increasing the number of civilian deaths on both sides by firing its anti-personnel rockets into densely populated areas and from densely populated areas? Should Israel be blamed because many Israelis left their homes in dangerous areas while many Lebanese decided to remain in war zones in order to serve as human shields for the terrorists?

HIZBULLAH IS on the wrong side of morality, international law and human rights. If the Lebanese army now joins it in fighting against Israel's efforts to stop terrorism, it will become complicit with terrorism and a legitimate military target.

It will share responsibility for the deaths of its own civilians.

It would be wise and moral for it to stay out of the fight and preserve its firepower to use against the real enemy of Lebanese democracy - Hizbullah.

Contact David Nathan at davenathan@aol.com

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 31, 2006.

Today's riots in Lebanon, Gaza and other places take me back to Haim Harari's April 2002 speech on War on Terror. Here it is.


"It is also a fact that almost everybody in the [Middle East] region blames this situation on the United States, on Israel, on Western Civilization, on Judaism and Christianity, on anyone and anything, except themselves." Thus destroying the UN buildings, burning UN and USA flags and calling for the destruction of Israel.

"The events of the last few years have amplified four issues, which have always existed, but have never been as rampant as in the present upheaval in the region. Though we are already well into it, few more years may pass before everybody acknowledges that it is a World War!"

"The following are the four main pillars of the current World Conflict, or perhaps we should already refer to it as "the undeclared World War III":

1. The first element is the suicide murder
2. The second ingredient is words, more precisely lies
3. The third aspect is money
4. The fourth element of the current world conflict is the total breaking of all laws

"All of these happen daily in Iraq and in the Palestinian areas. What do you do? Well, you do not want to face the dilemma. But it cannot be avoided. "

"The problem is that the civilized world is still having illusions about the rule of law in a totally lawless environment."

"The good news is that all of this is temporary, because the evolution of international law has always adapted itself to reality. The punishment for suicide murder should be death or arrest before the murder, not during and not after. After every world war, the rules of international law have changed, and the same will happen after the present one. But during the twilight zone, a lot of harm can be done. "

The picture I described here is not pretty. What can we do about it? In the short run, only fight and win. In the long run -- educate the next generation and open it to the world. The inner circles can and must be destroyed by force.

"Above all, never surrender to terror. No one will ever know whether the recent elections in Spain would have yielded a different result, if not for the train bombings a few days earlier. But it really does not matter. What matters is that the terrorists believe that they caused the result and that they won by driving Spain out of Iraq. The Spanish story will surely end up being extremely costly to other European countries, including France, now expelling inciting preachers and forbidding veils and including others who sent troops to Iraq. In the long run, Spain itself will pay even more."

I have no doubt that the civilized world will prevail. But the longer it takes us to understand the new landscape of this war, the more costly and painful the victory will be. Europe, more than any other region, is the key. Its understandable recoil from wars, following the horrors of World War II, may cost thousands of additional innocent lives, before the tide will turn.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Ken Heller, July 31, 2006.

This was written by Barbara Ginsberg of Maale Adumim, Israel. Contact her at barhow@.netvision.net.i

The world is angry at Israel. And that is great! It means that we are slaughtering the enemy. We made Hizbullah choke on their words that "Hizbullah defeated the Goliath", defeated indestructible Israel.

The world is angry at Israel for fighting a "war as a war" should be fought.

Israel's strategy has thank G-d proved effective and the world screams "stop".

Civilians were killed and some 50 Lebanese in Kana Well my friends, that is called war. Israel unlike any other nation, drops flyers, to warn the civilians to leave the area they are going to bomb. Whether the deaths were caused by Israeli bombs, or by Hizbullah to get the sympathy of the world, does not bother me.

The world is angry at Israel, because Hizbullah in their abnormal, animalistic rage attacked the UN personal and their building, both in Lebanon and Gaza. The very people who help these terrorists and are always on their side. Great! Let the world be angry.

Where was the anger of the world when Israel's innocent civilians were killed and hurt in our Northern towns? Where was the world's anger when Gush Katif, Sderot and Netivot had missiles and Katyushas raining down on them -- in so-called times of peace? Where was the world's anger when citizens were blown to pieces by suicide bombers? Where was Tony Blair? Why did he not appear on TV and shout, - Stop! Enough! There was a deafening quiet as Jews were being blown to pieces.

Enough -- we must continue this war and win. Israel has no choice.

I remember the U.S. using napalm fire against villages in Vietnam, killing innocent civilians.

The French fought in Algeria and thousands of Muslim civilians lost their lives in French bombing raids, and vigilante reprisals.

And the chutzpah of Tony Blair to angrily speak on TV that it is... "enough"? The Jewish people remember Britain's occupation of our country - keeping Auschwitz survivors from entering what was then called Palestine. Turning their backs and closing their eyes as the Arabs slaughtered Jews The moral Tony Blair's country used the noose to end the lives of Irgun and Stern fighters. The British were not for a goodwill gesture to set men free, as foolishly Israel is constantly doing today with her arch -enemies.

Please G-d let the world be angry with us. It means that we are winning and how great it is to be a winner and hated by the world. Please G-d, help us and let this be.

Ken Heller is a pro-Israel activist and a member of the Philadelphia Chapter of Americans For A Safe Israel. He can be reached at kayjayphilly@yahoo.com

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Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, July 31, 2006.

The Hi-Tech war against Hezb'Allah has put the spotlight on the weakness of a Hi-Tech Army like the IDF (Israel Defense Force) vs. a relatively primitive terrorist army. We now see it in Israel and the U.S. sees it in Afghanistan as the Taliban re-surfaces. The U.S. faces it in Iraq where road-side munitions blow up U.S. tanks, trucks and APC (Armored Personnel Carriers).

Israel once again trained for the wrong war. This is reminiscent of the dominant philosophy which led to the catastrophic surprise of the 1973 Yom Kippur War. That "philosophy" was called in Hebrew "Conceptzia" or the Concept. The IDF higher command fixed in their mind that Egypt and Syria wouldn't dare attack Israel but - they were wrong - dead wrong for some 6,000 young men who died too young because of the "Conceptzia". Even as Egypt was upscaling their training and pre-positioning ground-to-air missiles particularly, the "Conceptzia" blinded the Israelis.

Intelligence reported their findings but failed to convince the Military Staff and the politicians so - Intelligence failed! Clearly, History repeats herself as Hamas and Hezb'Allah built defense and pre-positioned tonnage of munitions virtually under the noses of the Generals and pathetically ignorant politicians whose present day "Conceptzia" was to ignore the build-up of terror capability. The focus of attack against the Right to lead the nation, wholly ignoring the growing danger embodied in Syria, Iran, and their proxies of Hamas and Hezb'Allah. It was "Conceptzia" 2006.

Presently, Barbara Opall-Rome in U.S. DEFENSE NEWS, July 17, 2006 wrote a scathing and correct analysis of Israel's misplaced confidence in her technology while ignoring "boots on the ground" training for their soldiers.(1) Claiming preparedness for war but allowing the enemies to build up for war and not touching them was a vital, death-dealing mistake as proven by the two front war begun in Gaza by Hamas on June 25th by an attack that killed two Israeli soldiers and kidnaped one, Corporal Gilad (ben Akiva) Shalit. Hezb'Allah began in Lebanon on July 12, 2006 by kidnaping two soldiers Ehud (ben Malka) Goldwasser and Guy (ben Rina) Hever.

Remember that Lebanon still holds 3 Jewish prisoners from the Sultan Yaaqub battle on June 11, 1982: Zecharia Shlomo (ben Miriam) Baumel, Tzvi (ben Pninah) Feldman and Yekutiel Yehuda Nachman (ben Sarah) Katz. Remember also Ron (ben Batya) Arad captured when his plane was downed over Lebanon on October 1986.

Unfortunately, the U.S. had over-ridding political priorities in the Middle East. Keeping the Arab Muslims pacified required holding Israel on a short leash. Every Israeli politicians and General knew that they were only allowed short bursts of retribution for hostile Muslim attacks, lest the "Arabs get angry". They acclimated to the schizophrenic role they were told to play.

Israel ignored their own politicized military, reduced their military capability and purpose and were subservient to weak politicians who closed their eyes to the dangers of the mounting Terrorist build-up of forces and armaments. Once, years ago, the elite of the military undertook night missions to spy out what the enemies were doing but, then the politicians didn't want casualties that might weaken their hold on political office. The Oslo Accords and philosophy became their training ideology where the lessons taught were not to engage the enemy lest the media unleash a storm of Israel-bashing.

Lessons were not learned from the U.S. Hi-Tech ariel assault on the Caves of Tora Bora in Afghanistan. The U.S. Generals even allowed the Taliban to escape Kabul in long lines of trucks with their weapons, heading for the cave networks in the mountains. America was certain that air attacks with big bunker-busting bombs would crush the caves and the Taliban inside. In the end, it was "boots on the ground" who had to explore every cave and blow them up virtually by hand - one by one. We were never told the casualty figures this low-tech fighting caused, but there was no other way to dig them out of their deep tunnels and hidey-holes. The U.S. faced the same tunnel problem in Vietnam but, the Israeli planners refused to learn the lesson.

Where were Israel's brilliant generals when they observed the "war of the caves" in Afghanistan? Just across the border of Lebanon, Hezb'Allah took 6 undisturbed years to create a virtual tunnel city, with nary a word from Israelis or from the U.N.'s UNIFIL observers who were (supposedly) watching and reporting back to the U.N. about the ongoing preparations for war.

I have little doubt that one day we will see a detailed book paralleling the U.N. "Oil-for-Food" scandal only this time it will cover 28 years of UNIFILS' (United Nations' Interim Forces in Lebanon) operational relationship with Hezb'allah via Iran and Syria. It should also describe UNRWA (United Nations Relief Works Agency) who were funding and assisting the Arab Muslim Palestinian terrorists from Yassir Arafat through Hamas.

All that was needed for the better organized terrorists was a small spark. First, it was a demented Sharon who was advised by Ehud Olmert to abandon the 10,000 Jewish men, women and children in 21 communities of Gush Katif/Gaza and the 4 northern Samarian towns. Despite repeated warnings, these two self-serving dimwits, along with their Leftist generals, who decided to hand over what amounted to a firing positions for a base of Global Terrorists. Why this entire cabal is not now serving time in prison for betraying the Jewish nation, I will never understand.

Because the vaunted Israeli military has shown weakness in the face of organized terror, why should the U.S. continue to consider Israel a vital ally. Giving up crucial land and armaments to hostile Muslim Arabs converted Israel from being a valued asset into a degraded liability.

Ehud Olmert, Shimon Peres, Amir Peretz, Gen. Dan Halutz, et al thought the U.S. would appreciate their 'restraint' in NOT hitting those Arab Muslim neighbors who were openly preparing for war. What these shallow country bumpkins did NOT understand was that Israel was only valuable as a tough, dependable army that could be called upon by the U.S. when necessary. What the Israeli bumpkins did NOT understand was that Washington Arabists, like the "Foggy Bottom" State Department, did NOT want Israel moving to defend herself. Their only goal was to appease the Arab Muslim oil nations and multi-national oil companies. Part of that appeasement was to keep Israel on a short leash.

This required recruiting Jewish Leftists such as Peres, Yossi Beilin, certain Leftist Generals and Media to maintain the mantra of Peace-Peace, Peace Uber Alles - Land-for-Peace - even as the Kassem Rockets and Katyusha Missiles were falling. Any sane nation would define such action as treason and a hanging offense in time of war. Israel (if you haven't noticed) has been in a state of Permanent War and low-level conflict (which is the definition of Terrorism) from her first days in 1948 until today.

Israel, under control and command of useless Olmert, Peretz (now Defense Minister) and Gen. Halutz (now in Command of the IDF) has been wasting tons of ammunition by firing at empty fields in Gaza. Now, as in the Yom Kippur fiasco, Israel desperately needs re-supply. The noisy boom-booms may have kept the Arab Muslim Palestinian up at night but did not stop Hamas from launching Kassem rockets into southern Israel with more useless boom booms.

(If possible, I would stuff Israel's current politicians and generals into those circus canons where the clowns are shot out into a net. In this case, I would unload those failures over Gaza and Lebanon - without the net!)

Even as the entire North is being hit with saturation missile attacks from Hezb'Allah, there are Leftists like Shulamit Aloni, the Women in Black (of which the Prime Minister's wife Aliza, is a leading member) and other Leftists staging protests against Israeli soldiers fighting in Lebanon to stop the missiles falling on Israelis in the North and rockets hitting Israelis in the South.

If Fidel Castro, with the help of Jimmy Carter, arranged the Mariella boat lift of criminals and crazies to be shipped to America, why cannot the sick and twisted Leftists be sent on a forever boat trip to Uganda or Saudi Arabia? Surely they deserve a rest from their arduous efforts to subvert the nation of Israel.

Have you noticed that Jewish attempt at humor increase proportionately to the terror? I wonder what jokes will be employed when the Europeans, Americans, the U.N. and Russia bring in NATO to run the lives of the Israelis. Certainly, as with UNIFIL, we cannot expect them to actually fight Hezb'allah as missiles continue to come in from Lebanon. Imagine the blame game when these NATO forces start to come home in body bags. They will inevitably blame Israel.

The Solution: Drive Olmert's government immediately out of power. Return to power those retired generals who proved their worth in past engagements. Do it now! Or prepare to weep bitter tears and name another day of national mourning.


1. "RAID REVEALS HOLE IN ISRAELI NET: Hezb'Allah Ambush Shows Flaws in Sensor Strategy - Analysts say Hizbollah attacks are aimed at boosting Iran's strategic position" by Barbara Opall-Rome Tel Aviv U.S. DEFENSE NEWS July 17, 2006

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@interaccess.com

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Posted by Lawrence Uniglicht, July 31, 2006.

Might the world be less inclined to skewer Israel for a perceived "disproportionate response" against Lebanon, as a consequence of Hizbullah's unprovoked attack on its soldiers, if indeed Israel declared war on sovereign Lebanon itself? In fact, that sovereignty did invade and attack Israel on its northern border! Never mind that the attackers are affiliated with fanatical Hizbullah. That Islamic cadre, obsessed with annihilating Israel, is represented in Lebanon's Parliament, and is supported by much of Lebanon's citizenry. Hizbullah is not in any way a rogue outside entity that infiltrates Lebanon for the express purpose of tormenting Israel. So what if the elected Lebanese President Lahoud and Prime Minister Siniora infer they have no control over such Jew despising fanatics. Why don't they expel Hizbullah representatives from Parliament? They certainly have the authority to do that, if they truly believe Hizbullah's behavior is contrary to Lebanon's best interests, perhaps even of a treasonable nature.

When one nation attacks another, the aggrieved nation has every right and in fact obligation to retaliate aggressively in order to defend its own citizens. Period! There are no exceptions to this rule. Israel surely attempts to minimize civilian casualties within Lebanon, however, Hizbullah cowards intentionally hide themselves and their deadly weapons, including missiles, behind civilian human shields, including women and children, in order to gain sympathy from a nave world, thus what can IDF forces do? The ongoing tragedy could in fact be lessened if Hizbullah was justifiably excoriated instead of Israel by worldwide observers, indeed reversing any psychological gains from the Shiite fanatics' despicable strategy, perhaps pressuring Hizbullah to either cease launching missiles at Israel or move its launching pads to desolate areas away from civilians; implementation of the latter contingency, of course, would be as likely as pigs flying in the desert.

The media blitz against Israel in many venues, especially but not exclusively in Europe (The New York Times, for one, in fact regularly displays graphic images of Lebanese corpses, no doubt intentionally portraying Israel as the devil incarnate) is repugnant, unabashedly exhibiting no sense of fairness whatsoever from editorial staffs that ought to know better. Might a sliver of true perspective every once in a while emerge, casting aspersions on manipulative subhuman Arabs willing to put presumed brethren in harms way for the sake of their wretched cause, strategically trading those human lives for misplaced sympathy and in many Muslim quarters even delusional hero worship, or is that too much to ask for? Let us hope Israel ignores the double standard it seemingly must always bear, perseveres in this true test of will, slays its enemies, and becomes a stronger nation for the daunting effort. That surely would be one rare but oh so important victory for justice and mankind.

Lawrence Uniglicht is a career civil servant, working for the Social Security Administration. He advocates for the State of Israel with an American perspective. He writes, "Advocating for the disrespected underdog has been my passion, no doubt Israel falls into that category." Contact him by email at luniglicht@snip.net

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Posted by Shaul Ceder, July 30, 2006.

This was written by Shraga Simmons and Pesach Benson. Shraga Simmons is the founding editor of HonestReporting.com. Pesach Benson is the editor of HonestReporting's daily blog, MediaBackspin.com.

This article is archived at:

Ammunition for how you can defend Israel.

It happens every time. Israel is forced into a defensive war, and winds up defending itself against canards of aggression and excessive force. Around the water cooler and on talk radio, Israel's supporters are put on the spot: Why are so many Lebanese civilians being killed? Why the destruction of so much infrastructure? Can't Israel show some restraint?

At times like this, every Jew becomes an ambassador for Israel. Even if you don't agree with everything Israel does, we must defend Israel's right to self-defense.

So let's sort out fact from fiction -- for the sake of Israel, and for ourselves.

Myth: Israel is attacking and killing hundreds of Lebanese civilians.

Fact: The death of any innocent civilian is tragic and Israel regrets the loss of life.

Why are civilians dying? Because Hezbollah is hiding among civilians, using villages, mosques and even private homes to store and manufacture weapons caches that include 12,000 missiles.

This creates a conundrum for the Israeli military, where Hezbollah wins either way: If the IDF shies away from attacking because of the proximity of civilians, Hezbollah's terror infrastructure remains in place. And if the IDF attacks, no matter how carefully, there will be collateral damage -- triggering condemnation in the media, and emboldening Hezbollah to operate from civilian areas.

Even the UN's humanitarian chief, Jan Egeland, said: "Hezbollah must stop this cowardly blending... among women and children. I heard they were proud because they lost very few fighters and that it was the civilians bearing the brunt of this."

Ynet News reports that Hezbollah is trying to maximize Lebanese civilian deaths, presumably for its own propaganda purposes: Roadblocks have been set up outside some villages to prevent residents from leaving.

Meanwhile, in order to minimize civilian casualties, Israel has dropped warning leaflets in Lebanon, advising residents to protect their own safety by "avoiding all places frequented by Hizbullah."

When was the last time that Arab terrorists alerted Israeli civilians of an impending strike?

So let's be clear who bears responsibility for the deaths of Lebanese civilians. As Alan Dershowitz writes:

A bank robber who takes a teller hostage and fires at police from behind his human shield is guilty of murder if they, in an effort to stop the robber from shooting, accidentally kill the hostage. The same should be true of terrorists who use civilians as shields from behind whom they fire their rockets.

Myth: Israel deliberately attacked a United Nations post, killing four UN personnel.

Fact: That UN post, in the words of the Canadian peacekeeper who was killed there, was being used by Hezbollah as cover. As retired Canadian Major General Lewis Mackenzie, interviewed on CBC radio, explained:

"We received emails from [the Canadian peacekeeper who was killed at the UN post] a few days ago, and he was describing the fact that he was taking fire within, in one case, three meters of his position for tactical necessity, not being targeted. Now that's veiled speech in the military. What he was telling us was Hezbollah soldiers were all over his position and the IDF were targeting them. And that's a favorite trick by people who don't have representation in the UN. They use the UN as shields knowing that they can't be punished for it."

Furthermore, Hezbollah has attacked UNIFIL observers repeatedly this week. From the UN's own press releases:

In the last 24 hours... Hezbollah fired from the vicinity of four UN positions at Marwahin, Alma Ash Shab, Brashit, and At Tiri. (27 July 2006)

One unarmed UN military observer, a member of the Observer Group Lebanon (OGL), was seriously wounded by small arms fire in the patrol base in the Marun Al Ras area yesterday afternoon. According to preliminary reports, the fire originated from the Hezbollah side during an exchange with the IDF. He was evacuated by the UN to the Israeli side, from where he was taken by an IDF ambulance helicopter to a hospital in Haifa. He was operated on, and his condition is now reported as stable. (24 July 2006)

Note that the UN observer was injured badly enough to be evacuated to an Israeli hospital -- where they saved his life. Kofi Annan's reaction? Not a word of condemnation against Hezbollah, and not a word of gratitude for Israel's rescue of the UN observer.

Myth: Israel is needlessly targeting Lebanon's civilian infrastructure.

Fact: Prior to the fighting, Lebanon was recovering from a long, destructive civil war. Last year's "Cedar Revolution" against Syrian occupation gave the world high hopes for the possibility of a new Lebanon. Tourism was on the rise, business was improving, and national infrastructure was being rebuilt.

Hezbollah has now used this infrastructure to support its own violent agenda. For years, weapons shipments passed through the capitol's international airport, across the Beirut-Damascus highway, and through various coastal ports. That's why Israel has been forced to bomb the transportation network, to hinder the arrival of arms from Syria/Iran, and to stop Hezbollah from moving the kidnapped Israelis out of the country.

Other Israeli strikes have targeted telephone links used by Hezbollah to communicate, Hezbollah offices, banks that handle their money, and TV transmitters from which Hezbollah's Al-Manar station is broadcast.

In fact, Israel is carefully selecting targets, in order to minimize damage. Writes David Frum of the American Enterprise Institute :

[Israel] has fought this war on its northern border as humanely as it can. Flip the switch in Beirut and the lights come on; open the taps, and the water flows. Essential services have been spared. The runways at Beirut Airport have been bombed to stop reinforcements to Hezbollah, but the control towers and the newly built terminal have been spared because Lebanon will need them later.

Myth: Israel's military response is "disproportionate and excessive."

Fact: We need to define our terms: Israel's response may be "disproportionate," but it is not "excessive."

In war, you don't measure response by what the enemy has done in the past, but rather how to stop their threats to attack you in the future. Hezbollah is threatening to send missiles into Tel Aviv, and there is the looming threat of Iran supplying Hezbollah with nuclear weapons. This is a serious security threat that must be eliminated.

Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen exploded the myth of "excessive force":

For Israel, a small country within reach, as we are finding out, of a missile launched from any enemy's back yard, proportionality is not only inapplicable, it is suicide... It is not good enough to take out this or that missile battery. It is necessary to reestablish deterrence: You slap me, I will punch out your lights.

Hezbollah boasts 12,000 missiles -- not for defense, but to destroy Israel. Why would the world not allow Israel to defend itself? Because it is more comfortable to live with the illusion of peace, to hope that this will pass and things will somehow work out. But Israel cannot afford to ignore the reality of the threat.

It is true that the fighting has produced more Lebanese casualties than Israeli casualties. But if Israel were to tell its citizens not to hide in bomb shelters, so that the thousands of rockets launched from Lebanon would kill many more Israelis, would the world's journalists and government leaders then smugly agree that Israel's effort to stop Hezbollah is indeed "proportionate"?

Myth: Hezbollah has a justified grievance and is being provoked by Israel.

Fact: Charles Krauthammer said it best:

What's the grievance here? Israel withdrew from Lebanon completely in 2000. It was so scrupulous in making sure that not one square inch of Lebanon was left inadvertently occupied that it asked the United Nations to verify the exact frontier defining Lebanon's southern border and retreated behind it. This "blue line" was approved by the Security Council, which declared that Israel had fully complied with resolutions demanding its withdrawal from Lebanon.

In the meanwhile, Hezbollah has created a mini-state inside of Lebanon -- with territory, weapons and soldiers. Over the past six years, Hezbollah has launched dozens of attacks across the internationally-recognized border on both civilian and military targets within Israel.

The current crisis began on July 12, when Hezbollah launched rockets at Israeli towns and cities in an unprovoked attack, and then crossed the border killing eight Israeli soldiers engaged in routine patrol and kidnapping two more.

Hezbollah "claims" that it is fighting over Shebaa Farms, a small tract of land where the borders of Israel, Lebanon and Syria converge. The UN maintains that Shebaa Farms was captured from Syria in 1967, and is subject only to Israeli-Syrian agreement.

Shebaa Farms is a thin smokescreen. Hizbullah's goal is the total destruction of Israel, plain and simple. (Read the Hizbullah charter, and Hezbollah's goals in their own words.)

Even Arab states like Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan have now chastised Hezbollah for its "unexpected, inappropriate and irresponsible acts."

Myth: Lebanon bears no responsibility for the actions of Hezbollah.

Fact: According to UN Security Council Resolution 1559, it is the responsibility of the Lebanese government to disarm Hezbollah and to assert Lebanese sovereignty in southern Lebanon.

The Lebanese government has completely failed in this regard, standing by while Hezbollah has assembled weapons stockpiles and entrenched itself in Lebanese towns.

Further, Lebanon cannot claim disassociation: Hezbollah is actually part of the Lebanese coalition government, holding two seats in the cabinet!

The irony of all this is that most of the world -- including the Lebanese population -- hopes that Israel will succeed in doing the job that the Lebanese army has not: liberating southern Lebanon from Hezbollah rule, and giving it back to the Lebanese.

Let's all do our part to promote the facts, and to help Israel win its battles on all fronts.

Contact Shaul Ceder at shaul.ceder@gmail.com

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Posted by Paula Stern, July 30, 2006.

Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, Dan Gilerman was just quoted as saying, "When you sleep with a missile, you may not wake up." He then went on to ask when was the last time Hizbollah apologized for any injury to Israeli civilians. The answer is known to all of us, never.

Perhaps these difficult battles against Hizbollah in the north, Hamas in the south, and preventing terror attacks in our cities is not so much about where we fight as what we fight against. This is especially hard after the tragedy in Kfar Qana, but even more important now than ever to remember. On Friday, Hizbollah fired katyusha rockets into Nahariya and hit a hospital. Only by the grace of God and the army's forward thinking had the hospital been evacuated previously and despite massive damage to the building, no loss of life occurred.

But there was no miracle in Kfar Qana today in Lebanon. Five days ago, the Israeli army warned residents to leave these villages. Satellite images publicized by the Israeli army show clearly what every resident of Kfar Qana could not have avoided knowing, that Hizbollah was using their village as a launching ground for at least 150 rockets fired into northern Israel. When you sleep with a missile?

Meanwhile, pictures continue to pour out of Lebanon that makes much of the world angry and at odds with Israel. What is missing, they claim is proportionality. It is wrong, says the world, to destroy a country for the lives of two or three soldiers. As always, the world is partially correct -- what is missing is proportionality. BBC continues to show the bombed out remnants of buildings in Beirut, but fails to make it clear that they are centering their broadcasts from an area that compromises about 1% of the total land area of Beirut. The other 99% remains untouched because there are no Hizbollah targets there.

Our government and politicians are taking to the airwaves to explain to the world why we do what we do, and how we do it. Kofi Annan's insulting comment that we hit a UN base in Lebanon on purpose shows the extent that Annan has been corrupted by his personal politics. The media shows pictures from Lebanon and the tens of thousands of fleeing Lebanese with little regard to the fact that more than 300,000 Israelis have fled the battle areas as well and more than a million others have spent days and nights in bomb shelters.

Pictures, the tool of the media, can be misleading, for all the thousand words they pretend to represent. Ultimately, perhaps the truth really lies in the words, the real words that leaders use to describe their goals. The General Secretary of Hizbollah, Hassan Nasrallah has summed up the battle we face on all fronts, "We have discovered how to hit the Jews where they are the most vulnerable. The Jews love life, so that is what we shall take away from them. We are going to win because they love life and we love death."

Nasrallah is correct in that Jews love life, that we do all we can to preserve the lives of our people and of those we must battle. It is not our forces that hide weapons among civilians and shoot katyusha rockets at cities indiscriminately. It was Israel that warned the Lebanese civilians to leave Kfar Qana and the Hizbollah that prevented them from going. It was Israel that warned civilians to distance themselves from Hizbollah bases, and the UN that decided to leave their base so close to Hizbollah's training camp. And finally, it was Hizbollah that chose Kfar Qana as a launching pad for those rockets, Hizbollah that used the houses of Kfar Qana to hide the missile launchers, and finally, Hizbollah that needs to explain the strange time difference between when Israel launched missiles in the vicinity of a house that only collapsed some 7 or 8 hours later.

But regardless of what happened in Kfar Qana, Nasrallah is right - we love live and they love death. But he is wrong in the conclusion he draws from this. Our loving life is not what makes us vulnerable, it is what makes us invincible.

And finally, Dan Gilerman is correct. "When you sleep with a missile, you may not wake up."

Contact Paula Stern at paula@writepoint.com

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Posted by Carrie Devorah, July 30, 2006.

A rally is planned by the muslim community on August 12th at the White House. I learned about the rally while I was in Chicago. These are some of the photos of the event I covered. The rest of the photos, all 289, are posted on my website www.carriedevorah.com (look on the home page for the gallery Chicago anti Israel rally).

What disturbs me as a news photographer who covered similar protests in Europe, this is the first protest I covered here in DC where the protesting community was predominantly muslim and dressed in their traditional garb of bhurkas and such.

Take a moment in my website to see what I photographed three years ago in London and sent warning photos out on back then. Few papers ran with the photos. Most editors follow the mantra 'if it isnt on my doorstep, then it isnt happening in my paper.' Bush and Blair stated in the East Room the other day something similar. Well.... now it is on our doorsteps.

On my website, look at the Protest Gallery for the Hyde Park protests, the Uzbekhistan protest at Marble Arch, the Bloody Sunday march in Northern Ireland and under Travel, look at the murals in Northern Ireland then back into the galleries for the image taken from the walls and made into a poster for the Chicago protest. And take a moment to look at the photos of Gerry Adams in the first ever presence of PLO flags in the Bloody Sunday March. Yes, I sent those pics out too. Sort of answers the question does a leopard lose its spots..... or.... in modern day language, can a terrorist ever really become a politician.

The August 12th rally is on a Saturday I believe. How do we combat the hate seen on the faces of the protesters..... prayer.... maybe prayer in the park -- no speeches, no featured groups, just a minyan and more -- the old fashioned way of showing who we are and that we don't duck and run. If the soldiers in Israel can pray amidst tanks and rocket fire, then we can pray too, can't we....

Sincerest Regards
Carrie Devorah

Carrie Devorah is an investigative photojournalist based in DC. Former religion editor of "Lifestyles" Magazine, her areas of focus are faith, homeland security and terrorism. Devorah is the sister of Jewish Press columnist Yechezkel Chezi Scotty Goldberg, victim of Egged Bus 19 bombing, 1-29-04. Goldberg was a noted psychologist with expertise in at-risk youth.

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 30, 2006.

To: ALL Dear Friend,

Israel's Chief Rabbi, Rabbi Yona Metzger, is calling all of us to join in a world-wide prayer to be held this coming Tuesday, August 1st, at 7PM Israel time (9AM Los Angeles time).

We join hands, Jews and Gentiles alike, one people, under God, as praying becomes the force engulfing the world. At the time this e-mail is sent, almost 40,000 people have already joined. Let us see how this number grows and explodes as we reach Tuesday evening, Israel time.

You may add your name to the world-wide chain of people who are joining this mission. The names of those who join will be printed and put in the Western Wall by Chief Rabbi Metzger, with his blessing.

You may view the prayers for the IDF Soldiers and for the well being and safe and speedy return of the kidnapped soldiers (Gilad Shalit, Udi Goldwasser, Eldad Regev) using the following link:


These days, when we are "between the straits", and in these desperate hours, our brothers Sons of Israel in the State of Israel face hard and murderous times from our enemies and those who are up to destroy us.

While in the battle front our brave soldiers in the Israeli Defense Forces risk their lives in the air and sea to repel those who turn upon us, and defend our people and the cities in Israel.

I call upon our Jewish brothers in the Diaspora, wherever they are, to pray for the well-being of our soldiers and their success this Tuesday at 19:00 (Israel time, for the recovery of the wounded, and the return of the captives to the loving arms of their families all safe and sound. Time is fixed on Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 7:00 PM Tel Aviv time.

Prayer for Gilad Shalit, to be read by all communities

Shelomo Amar

composed by the Rishon Le'Sion,
Chief Sephardic Rabbi of Israel, Shelomo Amar.

(Psalm readings: Chapters 70, 13, 142, 126)

Prayer for the Deliverance of the Captured Israeli Soldiers

MAY it be Your will, Lord our God and God of our fathers, that these Psalms which we have read before You today should come to You favorably, and be accepted before you as if King David Your anointed one -- peace be on him -- had said them himself. Please take action for the sake of Your Holy names which are written in them, and which are alluded to in them, and accept with mercy and favor our prayers and requests, so that our supplications reach You. Have pity, show concern and extend mercy to the captives, Ehud ben Malka Goldwasser; Eldad ben Tovah Regev; and Gilad ben Aviva Shalit, and save them, showing redemption and mercy, together with all captives and prisoners from Your nation Israel.

MAY the One who can liberate captives release them from their detention, deliver them from captivity to liberty, from tyranny to redemption, and from gloom to brightness, and restore them to complete health -- a healing of the soul and of the body -- and revitalize their spirit, reinvigorate their strength, and help them in happiness and joy; then they will be strengthened and healed and will have eternal happiness.

MAY the merit of the prayers, the cries, and the supplications of the multitudes who plead for them all over the world stand for them as a shield and a protection, freeing them from their captivity. Please tear asunder any negative judgments. May all their merits be presented before You, the Blessed One, and all that they have achieved and done for the sake of our nation and our heritage. Tear up their verdicts for the merit of the Holy Name that is alluded to in the initial Hebrew letters of the phrase "Accept the prayer of your nation; fortify us, purify us, You who are so awesome."

MAY the words of this scriptural verse (Isaiah 53:10) be fulfilled for them: "God's captives will return and come to Zion in joy; eternal happiness will be on their heads, they will be invested with joy and happiness, and sorrow and anxiety will be banished." May this happen very soon!

Translation by Rabbi Mayer Waxman, Director of Synagogue Services, Orthodox Union Edited by David Olivestone, Director of Communications, Orthodox Union

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Ezra HaLevi, July 30, 2006.

(From Cox and Forkum "Editorial Cartoons," http://www.coxandforkum.com/)

Pam Waechter, 58, was shot dead, and five people are in serious condition after a Muslim man opened fire inside a Jewish Federation building in Seattle, Washington Friday.

The Arab murderer entered the building Friday afternoon at 4 PM, following behind a woman who had just punched in her security code. He shot a receptionist and demanded that she call 911 and tell them he was holding everyone hostage. "He told the police that it was a hostage situation and he wanted us to get our weapons out of Israel," an employee told the Seattle Times.

According to Jewish Federation official Amy Wasser-Simpson, the man had told staff members, "I'm a Muslim American; I'm angry at Israel," and then began shooting.

Some reports said he held a gun to the head of a 13-year-old girl for a while while threatening the others in the room.

Most of the employees were able to escape through a back door, and once police teams arrived, 31-year-old Naveed Afzal Haq soon surrendered. He was charged with one count of murder and five of attempted murder. He is reportedly a US citizen, from outside the Seattle region.

All five of the wounded are women as well. None of the names of the victims have been released, but three of them with abdominal injuries underwent emergency surgery Friday. One victim is pregnant and was wounded only in her arm.

Police SWAT teams and bomb squads combed the area for hours looking for additional threats.

Robert Jacobs, the director of the local chapter of the Anti-Defamation League in Seattle, issued a recommendation to all Jewish institutions, including synagogues, to cancel services and evacuate the buildings until it is determined if the shooting is a lone incident. Despite this, he told the Times, "We're trying to keep the community as calm as possible."

Most of the city's synagogues ignored the directive, saying it would be a surrender to terrorism.

The Jewish Federation organized a large rally last week in support for Israel's Re-Engagement War.

Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske told an evening news conference that in addition to providing an extra layer of protection to the city's synagogues, police would be guarding mosques as well, fearing retaliation for the shooting.

writes for Arutz-Sheva. This is from today's Arutz-Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com).

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Posted by Marlene Young, July 30, 2006.


Instead of condemning Hezbollah for firing rockets in and around Lebanese buildings full of children, in neighborhoods full of Rocket launchers, from which Israel WARNED REPEATEDLY to let the civilians leave, the UN, EU, USA and the MEDIA continue to blame Israel for defending itself from those rockets aimed at Israel's civilian areas. The Media is therefore being used as a PROPAGANDA TOOL to allow Hezbollah to shield itself behind "civilians" and attack Israel civilians from behind civilian children, AS THEY DID IN QANA, a Hezbollah stronghold, from where Hezbollah fired hundreds of rockets at Israel against International Law..



Go to one of these Websites and fill in one of the forms:

www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form5.html?21 -Wolf Blitzer

www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form5.html?10 -Anderson Cooper


www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form5.html?11 -Paula Zahn

www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form4.html?19 Paula Zahn

www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form4.html?1 -Christiane Amanpour

Send e-mails to:


by David Bedein

As a former CNN employee ( I was the CNN Radio Correspondent during the Gulf War in 1991), my advice is to CALL CNN's Internet Desk and to ask for the staffer in charge. You present yourself as an avid viewer of CNN and then start asking questions in a very matter of fact manner. After the conversation, send a short, personal note to the person whom you have spoken to. This is the methodology used by Israel's adversaries, in a very effective manner. Send the letter both by e-mail and by hard copy, and always copy the CEO of CNN.

The telephone number of the internet desk is 404-827-1519.


David Bedein
cell 0547 222 661

Contact Marlene Young at malka613@gmail.com

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Posted by David Nathan, July 30, 2006.

White House: Tragic Qana bombing shows critical need for Israel to show restraint. Condoleezza Rice returns to Washington Monday. The UN Security Council meets Sunday evening on the Lebanese crisis

July 30, 2006, 5:38 PM (GMT+02:00) The Lebanese government refused to hold diplomatic discussions without an immediate unconditional ceasefire by Israel. Rice who cut her mission short said she was saddened by the tragedy in Lebanon. Prime minister Ehud Olmert and chief of staff Lt. Gen Dan Halutz voiced deep regret at the tragic loss of life at Qana after 57 reported dead including 37 children in collapse of buildings in Kafr Qana where the Israeli air force struck Hizballah rocket sites. Halutz said Israel did not know there were civilians and children in the building and blamed Hizballah for using them as human shields. Olmert: This war was not started by us and we did not want it, but we will finish our counter-offensive until northern Israel safe from Hizballah attack. He spoke of another 10 to 14 days. Hizballah religious leader Sheikh Nabulsi: If international troops come to South Lebanon, we will attack them in the same way as we fight Israelis.

This next is called the Qana Trap and is a DEBKAfile Special Report

The unfortunate South Lebanese village of Qana has been rigged time and again as a trap to snatch Israel and its international reputation in its jaws. In 1996, a stray Israel shell aimed at Hizballah inadvertently killed 100 civilians, bringing a former Israeli counter-terror operation "The Grapes of Wrath" to a dismal, foreshortened end.

Hizballah knows from long experience that maximizing Lebanese civilian casualties is the most effective way to disarm Israel and its military, using international opprobrium as its instrument.

Embedding its combat operations among helpless civilians is an old and proven method.

The prime minister who first fell into that trap was Shimon Peres, deputy premier in the Olmert government in 1996. A world outcry forced him to bow to Hizballah's terms for a ceasefire. The Shiite terrorists agreed to discontinue its attacks on Israeli civilians (which they never upheld), but assaults on Israeli soldiers were not deemed violations.

Ten years on, the Qana village tragedy confronts prime minister Ehud Olmert with the same kind of horrific weight to capitulate to an instant ceasefire, thereby granting Hassan Nasrallah and his rocket arsenal a free hand to continue to bludgeon two million Israeli civilians.

When, Sunday morning, July 30, Olmert told the cabinet: "We are not in a hurry to reach a ceasefire before our goals are achieved," he did not know about the Israeli chopper which two hours earlier had sent ordnance flying over a three-story building in Qana village, which housed civilians as well as a Hizballah site for shooting rockets against the Israeli towns of Haifa and Nahariya.

The death toll was appalling -- 57 civilians including 37 children, some of them disabled. The Qana disaster abruptly derailed the diplomatic initiatives to halt the hostilities put together in the last ten days through painstaking efforts in Washington, Paris, Jerusalem and Beirut, as well as the understandings the Israeli prime minister reached with US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice in their face to face conversation in Jerusalem the night before, Saturday, July 29. Olmert's statement to the cabinet will go down as a misplaced, mistimed assertion by an inexperienced leader.

By failing to understand the tempo of war, he was overtaken by the Qana disaster. He also wasted precious time by relying on Israeli air might, its navy and artillery to defeat Hizballah. Even the ground forces sent in eventually were not correctly used. Instead of deploying small, rapid teams for lightening raids on Hizballah positions, bunkers and villages and moving on to the next, large contingents fought day after day against Hizballah strongholds in Maroun es Ras and Bint Jubeil supported by armored force and artillery fire. Hizballah made good use of the advantage it enjoyed of speed to regroup and return to the fray.

A salutary shift in tactics was finally apparent Saturday night. This error was the outcome of two shortcomings:

1. The slow responses of the IDF's northern command and central military war room. DEBKAfile's military sources report that towards the end of the week, general staff headquarters took over the management of the campaign from the northern command.

2. A shortage of tactical intelligence on Hizballah's field operations and methods of warfare, which has turne out to be the Israeli military's Achilles heel in the Lebanon war.

In these circumstances -- and in response to Hassan Nasrallah's pose as the victor, which is far from the case -- Olmert must start moving fast, else another unforeseen disaster like Qana will again catch him unawares and snatch the pace of events out of his hands.

Contact David Nathan at davenathan@aol.com

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Posted by Hebron Community, July 30, 2006.

This was written by Yehudit Barsky and it appeared in the New York Sun July 28, 2006. Ms. Barsky is the director of the Division on Middle East and International Terrorism at the American Jewish Committee.

With the international community focused on Iran's quest to develop nuclear weapons, little attention has been paid to Tehran's preparations for a possible showdown with America and its allies. For more than a year, Iran has been preparing, together with terror organizations it controls and finances, for a confrontation code-named "Al-Qiyamah," which is Arabic for "Judgment Day." Hezbollah's unprovoked war against Israel may well be the first step in this Iranian-inspired conflict.

Leading this war effort is Brigadier General, Qassam Sulaymani, who heads the Al-Quds "Jerusalem" Force of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards. Based in Tehran, the Al-Quds Force is considered responsible for having trained thousands of operatives from Hezbollah, Hamas, and Islamic Jihad. Now Sulaymani has been tasked with coordinating and providing logistical support to the terror organizations that will execute Iran's plans for a confrontation.The plan reportedly includes suicide bombing attacks on America and British targets in the Middle East as well as on Arab and Muslim countries allied with the West.

Participants in Iran's "Judgment Day" plans include Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hezbollah cells in Europe, North America, the Persian Gulf region, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the leaders of Iraq's insurgency, and the Mahdi Army of Iraq's Muqtada Al-Sadr. Iran's Revolutionary Guards also have reportedly invited operatives from the Mahdi Army to be trained in Iran and have increased its funding to Al-Sadr to over $20 million.

Although Hezbollah is identified as a Lebanese terrorist organization, it was originally created in Iran following the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Representatives of Iran's Revolutionary Guards were sent to create Hezbollah cells in Lebanon and other countries with large Shi'a populations, including Western countries.

Mojtaba Bigdeli, a spokesman for Hezbollah in Iran, recently threatened to carry out attacks globally. "We have 2,000 volunteers who have registered since last year. They have been trained and they can become fully armed. We are ready to dispatch them to every corner of the world to jeopardize Israel and America's interests," said Bigdeli. "We are only waiting for the Supreme Leader's green light to take action. If America wants to ignite World War Three -- we welcome it."

Meanwhile, Iran has accelerated its supply of arms to Hezbollah during the past few months, sending rockets, missiles, explosives, and guided missiles to the terror group's bases in Lebanon. Hezbollah's arsenal of artillery today ranges from the relatively small Katyusha rockets which carry an 18-pound warhead packed with high explosives, Arash rockets which carry 40 pounds of explosives, to the Fajr 3 "Dawn" missile which carries 100 pounds of explosives, the Fajr 5 missile, which carries 200 pounds of explosives, and the Zilzal 2 "Earthquake" missile, with a warhead of more than 1300 pounds. Hezbollah also has been equipped with four types of surface-to-surface missiles.

More than 3,000 Hezbollah operatives went to Iran to be trained in military tactics, including guerrilla warfare, firing missiles, and artillery, the operation of unmanned aerial drones, conventional warfare, and marine warfare. Iran's outfitting of Hezbollah with military grade weapons over the past six years has transformed it into a militarized terror organization with offensive capabilities resembling that of a state. In tandem with its continued efforts to push for the legitimacy of its nuclear weapons program on the diplomatic front, Iran has been open about its support for Hezbollah. In a recent interview with the Arabic daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, an Iranian official stated: "Hezbollah is part of us and does not need guarantees to be certain the Islamic Republic is with it. We are standing with the Party, in spirit and physically, militarily and financially."

Iran has bluntly expressed its intentions toward America and Israel. In a military parade held in September 2005, during "Sacred Defense Week," Iran flaunted the latest versions of ballistic missiles produced by its military including the Zilzal 1 and 2. The namesake of this missile is a verse in the Qur'an that tells of the final earthquake that precipitates Judgment Day. The missiles were emblazoned with the slogans: "We will trample America under our feet," "Israel should be wiped off the map," "Death to America," and "Death to Israel."

Based on Iran's public statements and Hezbollah's opening salvo of rockets and missiles over Israel's northern border, this appears to be only the beginning of Iran's "Judgment Day" plans. We would be wise to take them at their word.

You can contribute directly to The Jewish Community of Hebron, POB10, Kiryat Arba-Hebron 90100, hebron@hebron.org.il, 972-2-9965333 or write to The Hebron Fund, 1760 Ocean Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11230, hebronfund@aol.com

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Posted by Steven Plaut, July 30, 2006.

One theory of why Germany was defeated in World War II was that it placed too much reliance on air assaults in the Battle for Britain, as a substitute for a ground invasion. The decision to forego a ground assault was a political one, produced by maneuvering and competition among German leaders for prestige. Hermann Goering was the head of the Luftwaffe, the German air force. While other generals favored a quick naval and ground assault against Britain to force it out of the war, Goering wanted the glory of defeating Britain reserved for his own pilots and planes. He convinced Hitler to allow the Luftwaffe to conduct the battle of Britain on its own.

It did not work. While suffering many losses, Britain won the battle. By then, it was also too late for Germany to attempt a ground and naval invasion of Britain. Germany was bogged down elsewhere. It lost the war.

Let me first ask readers to forgive me for a seemingly obscene analogy. But I only mean this in the most restricted sense of analyzing the over-reliance on air power in war. I realize that it is de rigueur these days for anti-Semites to draw comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany and I ordinarily consider such comparisons outrageous. But, in this one restricted sense of over-reliance on air power, Israel has been repeating the same strategic error as Goering.

In 1967, Israel defeated the combined armies of the Arab world in six days. We will soon be approaching a month's worth of fighting between Israel and a ragtime militia of Shi'ite Islamist terrorists, without a clear Israeli victory even being in sight. And the main reason for this has been Israel's Goering Delusion, its belief that air strikes alone can decide a battle and a war.

They cannot. Air strikes on targets largely consisting of empty buildings do almost nothing. Sure they are swift and clean and allow ground troops to stay safely out of the fighting. But had the Allies attempted to defeat Germany during World War II using the Goering Strategy of relying on air strikes, World War II might still be going on.

Israel's Goering Delusion is due, in part, to the same political maneuvering and in-fighting that created the original one in Germany, namely, political pressure from the head of the Air Force, seeking to boost the prestige of his pet corps. Israel's current military commander-in-chief, Dan Halutz, got his job after serving for many years as head of the Air Force. In the early stages of the current war against the Hezbollah, he no doubt pressured the political leadership to let his Air Force have an exclusive crack at the Hezbollah, delaying any ground invasion.

He got his way. The air force led the assault and accomplished nothing besides comforting but meaningless video tapes of explosions meant to comfort the population under the barrage of Hezbollah missiles. Meanwhile, the element of surprise was completely lost. Suppose - instead of the flamboyant air strikes - Israeli paratroopers had seized the bridges over the Litani on the first day of battle, followed by a rapid tank movement designed to cut off southern Lebanon. Suppose this had been followed by mopping-up operations of the Hezbollah bunkers and cells. It is certain that the katyusha rockets would have stopped falling on Haifa, Safed and Nahariya within the first few days of fighting. Moreover, there was no international pressure on Israel against conducting precisely such an operation. It was not carried out only because Israel's government was afraid to conduct it.

Instead, the Halutz strategy was to let the air force blow up buildings that make nice sound bites for the evening news. Israeli audiences could watch the reassuring explosions, a bit like Americans did in the early days of the liberation of Iraq. Except that in Iraq, the tanks and marines entered almost at the same instant as the cruise missiles. Israelis huddling in their bomb shelters could watch the nice explosions in Beirut and Tyre. But katyushas were falling on them all the while because of the Goering Delusion.

Ultimately, when Israel's leaders realized the bombings of the empty buildings were achieving nothing, they ordered ground troops in, but in a half-hearted, cowardly, hesitant manner. The ground fighting has resembled that old song from Bar Mitzvah parties, "Hokey Pokey." The Israeli version has gone something like this: "You put your ground troops in, you take your ground troops out, you put your ground troops in, and you move them all about. That's what it's all about."

The ground troops were moved into Lebanon and out again, as more of Israel's long term strategy to defeat terrorism by means of useless empty "signaling". They were ordered to remain close to the Israeli border and in limited numbers, which is why they were completely ineffective against the katyushas.

For many years Israel's leaders have attempted to defeat the enemy by "signaling". Under signaling, half-hearted warnings are issued in numerous forms, everything from sonic booms over terrorist encampments to brief incursions into the Gaza Strip, Nablus or Lebanon. The problem with "signaling" is that an empty signal not backed up by real force achieves nothing. Indeed, it does great damage, by conveying to the enemy that Israel does not have the stomach for a real battle and is afraid of using its military in a serious way. Israel destroyed its own deterrence by endless empty threats of "really, really serious retaliation" and its perpetual "signaling".

Let us be clear. The Israeli army that defeated the Arab military machine in 1967 in Six Days could have cleared southern Lebanon of the Hezbollah in a very short time. But it was shackled by Israeli politicians, convinced that symbols and signals are all that are needed. Sending into Lebanon troops in small numbers and then ordering them to return to base is an empty threat. Declaring over and over that ground troops will not be sent deep into Lebanon is equivalent to declaring that the Hezbollah has nothing to fear from Israel. "Over-flying" Latakia in Syria without dropping a single bomb tells Syria that it has nothing to fear from Israel either, other than from more empty "signals". "Bombing" Lebanese cities with leaflets calling on the Lebanese to expel the Hezbollah shows that Israeli leaders still think they can destroy terrorism by making terrorists laugh themselves to death.

Empty signaling is indeed effective, but not in the sense Israel's leaders believe. Reliance upon signaling rather than the serious use of the military merely convinces the enemy that Israel is on the run and is too frightened of international pressures or of suffering military casualties to do what is required. In other words, it is a shot of adrenaline in the arm of the Hezbollah. It proves to the terrorists that Israel is afraid of a real fight. It signals that the one strategy Israel will not attempt against terrorism is military victory. What better way to invigorate the Hezbollah militia men?

Empty threats do indeed signal - but they signal weakness and defeatism.

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. His website address is http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com. Contact him at splaut@econ.haifa.ac.il

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Posted by Gilbert Simons, July 30, 2006.

How to end this war successfully? Lots of words but no solution or permanent closure. Israel has been down this road many times before and should not do so again. This crisis offers a superb opportunity to bring Israel a major victory, resulting in Permanence, Security and Peace to this beleaguered nation. 1. Israel must conquer all of Southern Lebanon up to the Litani River. It has the international right to conquer any territory from which it is attacked, up to the point from which it will be more secure. It does so with minimal casualties by by-passing all pockets of resistance, to be annihilated at leisure. 2. Israel then dedicates this land as Palestine, offering stakes to all peaceful Arabs wanting to build homes and gardens or orchards thereon. This new nation will be a beacon to millions of Arabs living in hovels in refugee camps in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Israel. Many Arabs in Judea, Samaria and Coastal Israel may also wish to settle in this new Palestine, rather than being under Israeli rule. Lebanese homes will be off-limit What are the results of the above actions?

- Hizbullah is all but destroyed.

- Hizbullah is now 20 miles further away from Israel's northern borders, creating an effective buffer zone. If Syria and Iran choose to equip Hizbullah with longer range missiles, Israel will conquer more of Lebanon, to be added to Palestine. The Palestinian army will eagery assist in this matter.

- The refugee camps will be vacated, to the eternal gratefulness of Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon.

- The refugees themselves, freed from the coercion of the PLO, will eagerly move to Palestine of their own free will. Palestine will have its own government, armed forces, schools, mosques, etc. Since its citizens will now protect and defend their new country and homes, they will destroy any radical elements intent on disrupting their peaceful lives.

- Israel's demographic time-bomb is now peacefully defused. Those Arabs wishing to peacefully remain in Israel, may do so as permanent residents, with all rights of Israeli citizens except for national voting rights.

- Israel is permanently reunified, both Coastal and Inland. It becomes a sovereign nation, with internationally recognized borders. No more "land for peace" blackmail. The Oslo Accords are dead as is the Road Map. Israel officially declares itself a Jewish Democratic State, and not a Democratic-Jewish one. Hebrew is its only language, and its school system is all Hebrew. No anti-Semitic material can be disseminated in Israel. Israel no longer reacts to every insult in knee-jerk fashion. It adheres to Principles recognized world-wide: Permanence, Security, Peace.

- Genocidal organizations in Israel are outlawed. Its proponents and adherents are given 48-hours to leave the country or be arrested, tried and executed for their crime (genocide). Their remains are cremated with pig parts, to be scattered in desert or sea (no 62 virgins waiting for them in Heaven). PLO fighters wanting to disassociate themselves from their previous organizations are given the opportunity to turn themselves and their weapons in to assembly points. They will receive substantial compensation for the weapons and for the information they provide at demobilization. When the shepherd is gone, the flock will scatter.

- Israeli POW's are ordered to be released unharmed. A list of Arab prisoners is compiled, and Israel proclaims that if these Israeli servicemen are not returned within 72 hours, ten prisoners at the top of the list will be executed within 24 hours for every Israeli POW not released. Pamphlets are widely distributed so that the extended families and friends of those Arabs at the top of the list will coerce the captors to send the Israelis home safe and sound. If they fail, and the executions take place, those holding the POW's will be held responsible by relatives and friends, and they will not live long. PLO leaders and lieutenants will not take this chance. No more need for Israel to succumb to exorbitant black-mail. Israeli's POW's will return home to great rejoicing.

- If Israelis have a better plan, let them implement it without delay. If not, they have two choices left: to continue on their disastrous course toward the eradication of Israel and the annihilation of its Jews -- close to 2,000 innocent Israelis have already paid the ultimate price; they have already lost Israel's heartland and Gaza; and many Israeli cities are daily under mortar and missile fire -- or they can pack their bags and become wanderers of this earth. - But if Israelis have no better plan, and they reject this one, all Israelis who escape will bear responsibility for the death of thousands and eventually millions of Jews they left behind.

Contact Gilbert Simons by email at gsimons@adelphia.net

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Posted by Women in Green, July 30, 2006.

This was written by Sarah Honig and it appeared in the Jerusalem Post July 28, 2006.

What connects European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana to a Jerusalem landmark inscription? Hypocrisy. Obfuscation of truth. Tampering with history, be it more distant or very recent.

Far from the sound and fury of unabated fighting on Israel's South and North, both Solana and the sign set new standards for insincerity, duplicity and pretence. Both travesties - equally stomach-churning, mind-boggling and plainly exasperating - came to light on the same day last week.

The marker was put up to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the King David Hotel blast in which the IZL (in the framework of an ad-hoc partnership with the other undergrounds - the actual operative order having come from Hagana commander Moshe Sneh) blew up the edifice that served as the British Mandate's nerve center. The IZL phoned warnings to the French Consulate, The Palestine Post (this newspaper's forerunner) and the hotel switchboard, requesting that the building be vacated forthwith to avoid casualties. The Brits haughtily pooh-poohed all three advance notices.

This is the marker's original text:

"The hotel housed the Mandate Secretariat as well as the Army Headquarters. On July 1946 Irgun fighters, at the orders of the Hebrew Resistance Movement, planted explosives in the basement. Warning phone calls had been made urging the hotel's occupants to leave immediately. For reasons known only to the British, the hotel was not evacuated, and after 25 minutes, the bombs exploded, and to the Irgun's regret and dismay, 91 persons were killed."

IT'S ALL incontrovertibly true, but truth isn't everyone's cup of tea. And so Her Majesty's embassy demanded the sign be revised. To curry favor and avoid discord, Jerusalem's municipality dutifully promised to remove offensive references to the British refusal to clear the premises.

It may seem paltry considering current bloody events, but it's symptomatic. We're always so eager to please and so hungry for foreigners' approval - even at the expense of the justice of our cause.

The King David bombing is still cited today by Israel's maligners as an example of "Jewish terrorism," exploited particularly in order to set up synthetic moral equivalency between Arab suicide bombers who deliberately target civilians and the Jewish underground, which went out of its way to avoid casualties, civilian and otherwise.

The King David lie remains too useful to too many. They can't let it be dented, not even via a forgettable memorial plaque. And in our alacrity to accommodate ourselves and bask in the warm glow of enlightened post-modernist bon ton, we all too often willingly sacrifice the ethical core of our case, that which sets us apart from those who would annihilate us.

We even omit to stress the existential nature of Israel's struggle: how it was savagely attacked on the day of its birth by seven armies (some trained, equipped and led by the very same Brits who denied entry into this country to Jewish refugees from Hitler's hell, and later to hell's emaciated survivors). We compliantly submit to our characterization as somewhat unsavory.

SOLANA, HABITUALLY disseminating these de-rigueur characterizations, showed up here on "a fact-finding mission" on behalf of the EU, which presumably couldn't figure out what triggered the latest regional fuss and didn't apparently realize that fanatic Islamo-fascists - in possession of territories unilaterally ceded to them by Israel - had violated Israeli sovereignty, killed Israeli soldiers, abducted others and shelled noncombatants deep inside the country.

Both Hamas and Hizbullah owe allegiance to masters and manipulators in Damascus and Teheran, hardly the darlings of the world's progressive, liberal and tolerant democracies. Some of these democracies nevertheless dispatched Solana to discover what the uproar from troublesome Israel's vicinity was all about.

While here, Solana saw fit to uphold the EU's refusal to classify Hizbullah as a terrorist organization, asserting that the EU "does not possess sufficient data to determine" whether Nasrallah's nasties belong on its baddie list. He insisted on this not being a moral lapse on Europe's part, but strictly "a legal issue."

Solana's humbug isn't paint on metal. But it is, in essence, indistinguishable from the King David plaque modification. In both instances manifestly evident facts are denied and disingenuously covered up to serve vested interests and facilitate double standards.

If the specter of Jewish terrorism can be artificially conjured and magnified, it may not-so-subtly excuse horrific unrelenting terrorism against Jews.

Conversely, if that monstrously barbaric terror unleashed against the Jews can be diminished and deceptively passed off as something else, then Jewish self-defense is cast in a villainous light and tarnished with malicious tendentiousness as "disproportionate" and, indeed, inherently terrorist itself.

BY PRETENDING that Hizbullah may possibly be on the up-and-up, Solana knowingly propagates falsehoods. He isn't a misguided visitor to Beirut - like the three young women whose tearful departure from that city was so heartrendingly documented by the BBC. Probably never lovers of Zion to begin with, they were allowed to ramble on - without interruption or critical interrogation - about how Israelis "torture" the undeserving Lebanese. Solana surely knows better.

His realpolitik sanctimony notwithstanding, he knows that had Hamas and Hizbullah stayed inside their side of the demarcation line and not terrorized Israelis, no violence whatever would have broken out. No "humanitarian disaster" would be looming over either Gaza or Beirut.

But worse yet - in his heart of hearts - Solana knows that had Israelis not resisted the aggression of the Hamas and Hizbullah objects of his compassion, had Israelis not taken up arms in their self-defense, they'd face another Holocaust, as Hamas's and Hizbullah's Iranian sponsor has already explicitly threatened, mincing no words.

Unlike the British Mandatory high command, Israel cannot afford to superciliously dismiss serious forewarnings.

Ruth and Nadia Matar established Women For Israel's Tomorrow (Women in Green), an activist group of women based in Jerusalem. Their website address is http://www.womeningreen.org

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Posted by Deb Kotz, July 30, 2006.

Video Of The Zahal Soldiers

A new video that just came out.. Pass along if you like it...

Click here.

Obsession, What the war on terror is really about. This comes from Little Green Footballs.

Deb Kotz is an active member of the Brandeis Chapter of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) and maintains an email list to distribute articles of interest to the local community. She can be reached at DebKotz@aol.com

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Posted by Matthew S. Finberg, July 30, 2006.
I read with great disappointment that the director of the Seattle chapter of the Anti-Defamation League "issued a recommendation to all Jewish institutions, including synagogues, to cancel services and evacuate the buildings" following the murderous attack on the Seattle Federation building last Friday. This reaction is all too reminiscent of the "run and hide" response of the Jewish People over the past 2,000 years when we have been attacked, and plays directly into the hands of our enemies.

It reflects a fatal lack of bitachon [confidence in HaShem], rejecting His ways for the perception of safety one has with his head buried well in the sand. Instead, all Jews should be armed and/or otherwise ready to defend themselves to the full extent permitted by law, and go to prayer services, rallies, and ordinary day to day activities of normal Jewish life. We should be openly Jewish and attend our services in our synagogues in numbers larger than ever. Of course law enforcement should provide security to us as it would for any group targeted for hate crimes and terror. Nevertheless, we must be prepared to take care of ourselves as there are not enough law enforcement officials to cover every anti-Semite with a weapon.

Get your heads out of the sand and stand up straight and proud, confident and strong. That is Yeshurun - Israel at our finest. HaShem doesn't want his Children to run from the class bullies. Never Again.

Matthew Finberg is Chairman of B'nai Elim. Contact him at matt@finberglaw.com or go to the website: www.bnaielim.org

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Posted by Naomi Ragen, July 30, 2006.

My son is in the army. He is not the type at all, believe me. Quiet, studious, a writer, a lover of Jewish history, Talmud, ethics. He spent two years in a pre-army program in the Galilee called Karmei Chayil. He made many good friends there from all over the country, and now he and all his friends are in the army. One of them I know well. A bit chubby, with payot, and a great laugh. He and my son have become like brothers. While both of them tried out for the elite paratroopers unit, only he made it in. He and his unit are the ones in Lebanon. They were there over a week, fighting under horrific conditions, running out of food and water. Even though the Israeli airforce dropped tons of leaflets warning civilians to flee because they were in terrorist territory and likely to be injured, they still encountered civilians. My son spoke to his friend yesterday,and this is how he described it:

"The village looked empty, and then we heard noises coming from one of the houses, so we opened fire. But when we went inside, we found two women and a child huddled in the corner of the room. We were so relieved we hadn't hurt them. We took up base in one of the empty houses. And then all of a sudden, we came under intense fire. Three rockets were fired at the house we were in. Only one managed to destroy a wall, which fell on one of us, covering him in white dust, but otherwise not hurting him. I spent the whole time feeding bullets to my friend who was shooting non-stop. We managed to killed 26 terrorists. Not one of us was hurt. Our commanding officer kept walking around, touching everybody on the shoulder, smiling and encouraging us: "We're are better than they are. Don't worry." It calmed us all down. And really, we were much better then them. They are a lousy army. They only win when they hide behind baby carriages."

Please remember this when you hear about the "atrocity" of the Israeli bomb dropped on Kfar Cana, killing many civilians, a place from which Hezbollah has fired hundreds of rockets at Israel. Unlike previous administrations, Mr. Olmert has my respect when he says: "They were warned to leave. It is the responsibility of Hezbollah for firing rockets amidst civilians."

Terrorists and their supporters have lost the right to complain about civilian casualties, since all they have done this entire war is target civilians. Every single one of the more than 2,500 rockets launched into Israel, is launched into populated towns filled with women and children. Just today, another suicide belt meant to kill civilians in Israel was detonated harmlessly by our forces in Nablus. So don't cry to me about civilian casualties. Cry to those using your babies and wives and mothers; cry to those who store weapons in mosques, ambulances, hospitals, and private homes. Cry to those launching deadly rockets from the backyards of your kindergartens and schools. Cry to the heartless men who love death, and however many of their troops or civilians die, consider themselves victorious as long as they can keep on firing rockets at our women and children.

Save your sympathy for the mothers and sisters and girlfriends of our young soldiers who would rather be sitting in study halls learning Torah, but have no choice but to risk their precious lives full of hope, goodness and endless potential, to wipe out the cancerous terrorist cells that threaten their people and all mankind. Make your choice, and save your tears.

That terrorists have been unsuccessful in killing more of our women and children is due to our army, God and prayers, not to any lack of motivation or intention on their part. If you hide behind your baby to shoot at my baby, you are responsible for getting children killed. You and you alone.

Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist and journalist who lives in Jerusalem. She can be contacted at www.naomiragen.com, where you can subscribe to her newsletter.

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Posted by Zalmi, July 30, 2006.

Israel should never have left Lebanon.
That is now clear as daylight.
That Barak pulled our boys out in the middle of the night, only emboldened the enemy which is now deeply dug in within bunkers or behind human shields.

In a few weeks, we shall be back to square one.
In control of South Lebanon up to the Litani river.
The idea seems to be to hand this buffer zone over to a multinational force.
Right now few countries have rushed forward to volunteer for this peacekeeping job.
Besides, what kind of multinational force can we trust anyway?
Russians? Chinese? Heaven forbid, even French?

The irony is that the very territory we are recapturing is the tribal homeland of Naphtali and Asher. Part of biblical Israel as divinely gifted to our people. Not many people know that.

From that perspective, I would like to suggest the perfect multinational force to occupy this area.

Russian Jews and French Jews. Jews from America and Britain. Argentinian and Brazilian Jews. Jews from Italy and Germany. A whole contingent of olim from all corners of the globe.

Those are the only peacekeepers we can trust.
And their presence would send the most effective message to our enemies.
If you want our land, use it for peaceful purposes only.
Use it thus, or lose it forever.

Contact Zalmi at zalmi@zalmi.net or go to his website:

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Posted by Lee Caplan, July 29, 2006.

Tisha B'av commemorates the destruction of both Temples and the exile of the Jewish people. Although Jewish sovereignty has been reestablished in Eretz Yisrael, civil hatred threatens its survival and the realization of a country built on Jewish values.

The "convergence" plan embodies this problem. The plan calls for 50-100,000 Jews to be expelled from Yehuda and Shomron (West Bank), 90-95% of the area to be given away, and for the division of Jerusalem.

This will create a terror state, infringe on the Jewish right to settle the Land, create a large population of Jewish refugees, and leave the State of Israel with indefensible borders. Despite the current attacks, the Prime Minister Olmert still says he intends to push the plan.

Please recite the following tehillim - Psalms 137, 3, 126 and 133 - with a prayer that the horrible plan will not be realized and that Hashem will bring a true day of redemption and unity of the Jewish people. Pay attention to the meaning of the words and you'll find each one is relevant to the current situation.


Let him know we are in favor of his support for Israel. The Arabs are calling at twice the rate of American Jews, trying to get him to change his policy supporting Israel.

The President needs to know that we recognize and appreciate U.S. leadership regarding Israel at this very perilous time.


Use the phone: Call 1 202 456-1111

Memo to: Young Israel branches and friends
To: Shlomo Z. Mostofsky, National President
To: Rabbi Pesach Lerner, Executive Vice President
Date: July 27, 2006
Re: Israel Action Update

We are all aware of the current situation in Israel. Our brethren need our prayers and action.

1.  We share with you an idea and suggestion from Rabbi Elazar Grunberger of St. Louis, Missouri.

Dear Rabbi Lerner

As per our discussion this morning I am writing to you about the practical idea I have for all Congregations throughout North America.

Our constituents, Jews who care about the matzav in E"Y, want to do something that contributes to the well being, safety, and security of Jews in E"Y.

This past Sunday morning in my Shul, Sha'arei Chesed (formerly Chesed Shel Emeth), I passed out slips of paper to the 25 mispalelim and after the Shir shel Yom, I announced that each one of us can make a significant difference and contribution to the well being, safety, and security of our brothers and sister, our mispocha in Israel. It's all about zechuyos. The more zechus that's built up, the more hatzlacha and bracha there will be.

I asked everyone to write down ONE addition commitment, any mitzvah, any small effort, to be added to their daily routine, in the merit of the matzav in E"Y. I qualified that the starting place is saying Tehilim 83, 130, & 142 which is the suggestion of our Gedolim. After discussing this with Rav Aharon Feldman, Roshe HaYeshiva of Yeshiva Ner Israel in Baltimore, MD, he further qualified that the commitments should be within the context of Limud haTorah and Chesed, and for sure in Tefillah.

Everyone in my minyan responded and each person felt like they are making a difference. The following were some of the commitments I received:
-- extra paragraph of Tehilim every day
-- give tsedakah every day
-- say Tefilas l'Dovid after davening
-- add 3 perakim of Tehilim
-- learn 2 mishnas every day
-- to complete recitation of Karban Tamid and Seder haKetores before davening
-- put a dime in the pushka every day
-- wear tsitsis at least once more per week
-- one minute of meditation of Ahavas Chinam
-- consciously smile 3X daily at each of my children
-- to bensch after I eat (and to carry a benscher in my pocket)
-- keep my mouth shut when someone does something that offends me once a day
-- review for 5 - 10 minutes everyday, previous day's gemorah learned
-- read for 15 minutes a day before or after Shacharis a safer

I believe that if this is a national effort where Rabbonim will participate and ask their congregants to each make a commitment along these lines of extra limud haTorah, Tefillah, and acts of Chesed, we can immediately build up tremendous zechuyos for Klal Yisroel which is desperately needed, particularly at this time.

Please also request that the Rabbonim encourage their constituents to each share (anonymously) what their commitment is. This will be helpful as suggested ideas for others and this also solidifies their personal commitment when they write it down and forward it to their Rabbonim.

Thank you for assisting in this important effort. May we all be zocheh to see yeshuos and nechamos, b'karov.

Elazar Grunberger
Rav, Sha'arei Chesed Shul
Director, Aish HaTorah St. Louis
egrunberge@aol.com 314-229-5600

2. Please continue to make emergency appeals. All funds will be coordinated through Yisrael HaTzair, Young Israel in Israel. Funds are needed to supply the bunkers with sleeping bags, food supplies, first aid kits, toys and games; to transport children to day camps further south; to assist those individuals who are currently not able to work (because their place of employment closed, their children are home, etc.) and can not even afford to pay for basic necessities; to assist effected families to relocate to host families in the center of the country, etc.

Please have all checks made out to Young Israel Charities, and mark it Northern Israel Campaign. Funds should be sent to National Council of Young Israel, 111 John Street, Suite #450, New York, NY 10038.

Please call us with the result of those appeals. We have an individual who will advance those funds so we can send the monies as soon as possible.

3. We encourage all shuls to add the tefillos for the State of Israel, Missing Israeli Soldiers, and for the Israel Defense Forces in their daily and Shabbat davening. Those tefillos can be found at www.youngisrael.org and printed for distribution to your congregants.

10 things to see or do

1. Many of us recognize the importance of the Internet as the new battleground for Israel's image. It's time to do it better, and coordinate our on-line efforts on behalf of Israel. An Israeli software company has developed a free, safe and useful tool for us - the Internet Megaphone.

Please go to: < http://www.giyus.org/> http://www.giyus.org download the Megaphone, and you will receive daily updates with instant links to important Internet polls, problematic articles that require a talk back, etc.

We need 100,000 Megaphone users to make a difference. So, please distribute his mail to all Israel's supporters. Do it now. For Israel. Please distribute to your friends.

Amir Gissin - Director
Public Affairs (Hasbara) Department
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jerusalem

2. Radical Islam

3. Thank some people: Friends,

As I sit here in Jerusalem writing, a fierce battle rages in Lebanon as our dear sons fight for the life and safety of the Jewish people in their homeland.

Because Israel doesn't broadcast news all day, I sometimes turn to the foreign networks. As I sat and watched Fox News reporters describe the war we fight, my heart was warmed in a way that it has not been for a very long time. I want to thank Shepard Smith and their excellent Jerusalem-based correspondent, Jennifer Griffin, for the thorough, fair, and informative reporting. I want to thank Sean Hannity for his forthright and stirring defense of Israel in this current crisis. I want to thank Greta Van Sustern for her excellent, sympathetic and fair coverage. For the first time since the intifada started, I felt that I was hearing the truth come from the news media. I am grateful to them for leading the way out of the darkness sown in the world by CNN and BBC and the New York Times, who have let us all down time and time again, foisting off liberal editorializing as news reporting, and ignoring the inconvenient facts. We are where we are because of their brainwashing propaganda. All of Israel's friends should be watching Fox. And we should all be sending our thanks to them.

foxreport@foxnews.com (Shepard Smith)
hannity@foxnews.com (Sean Hannity)
comments@foxnews.com (general comments)

Naomi Ragen.

4. This is a must watch from Arab TV. Watch this Arab - American Psychologist tell it like it is.

5. Send a letter to the brave IDF soldiers fighting for all our freedom.

6. Must see videos and more:

7. Very moving pictures from the IDF


Last week, "Obsession: Radical Islam's War against the West" was prominently featured for two consecutive days on the Rush Limbaugh show, a radio show heard by millions across the United States. On the second day, Wayne Kopping, the film's director, had an unprecedented 13-minute interview with Rush live on the show. (hear it now ...
rushlimb.download.akamai.com/5020/clips/ 06/07/071906_2_obsession.asx attached is the link to the transcript

Baruch Hashem, this generated a tremendous amount of publicity for the film.

The Hannity and Colmes Show on FOX TV has now booked us for this Thursday, July 27. The show airs from 9-10 PM EST. In our segment, live interviewees representing Obsession will be Nonie Darwish, daughter of a Gaza shahid, and Wayne Kopping.


10. please let me know if any links don't work and please send this to all your friends...

Thank You
Bruce Tuchman

From: Manhigut-Yehudit@jewishisrael.org
To: yocheved@yochevedgolani.com
Sent: Thursday, July 27, 2006 9:43 PM

What is Going Wrong?

Two weeks have now passed since the beginning of the war with no name. Two weeks fighting a war that we deny. "Refugee camps" and "tent cities" are springing up in the "safe" parts of Israel, housing the residents of the north who were forced to flee their homes. All available spots are immediately taken, and yet there are not enough accommodations for the steady stream of refugees from the north. But State Attorney Mazuz explains that this is not a war.

A heartless judge sends a 15 year old girl back to jail for an additional four months without trial. "Let's finish the trial quickly," the surprised prosecutor requested. "After all, even if the girl is convicted, she will get less time in jail than the time she has already spent there." But the judge refuses. Until she recognizes my authority and signs on the dotted line, she is not getting out. For the bullies in the judge's cloaks the Disengagement diskette has replaced the hard disk. (For more on 15 year old Oryah Shirel who continues to sit in jail, see Moshe Feiglin's article Bullies in Judges' Cloaks).

And what about Pollard? Who remembers him today? Bush wanted to release him last Passover, but Israel preferred not to let that happen. Who is interested in Pollard today, we have other prisoners to take care of and how is Pollard connected to the fighting in the north, anyway?

Businesses in the north are caving in. But never fear -- the government has a "solution for every settler." According to the media, we are winning and it is really the Hizbollah who have become refugees. It reminds me a bit of Cairo Radio at the start of the Six Day War reporting that the Egyptian soldiers are already celebrating on the beaches of Tel Aviv.

It is possible -- and vital -- to win this war. But in the meantime, without a clear strategic goal -- in other words -- a vision -- confusion reigns. The most that we can expect under the current circumstances is a cease fire, or, in other words, an honorable defeat. Olmert's spin doctors are surely already working on the new marketing formula that will transform his defeat into a momentous achievement.

Then the real war will start. Against the settlers, of course. Although it may seem surrealistic, Olmert is still determined to carry out the convergence. Need some convincing?

"Olmert has another, unspoken, consideration in this war. He wants to set a precedent for convergence on the West Bank." (Ha'aretz July 14th, '06)

"The Prime Minister must convince the public that he has a security answer for the post-withdrawal dangers. His leadership skills are now being tested." (Ha'aretz July 14th '06)

"This must be the strategic goal of the fighting -- restoring the Convergence Plan. "(Reserve General Uzi Dayan, former head of Israel's National Security Council)

How can we prepare for the war that Olmert plans to wage against the settlers? Manhigut Yehudit has prepared a special pamphlet (in Hebrew) with the conclusion and lessons to be learned on the first anniversary of the expulsion from Gush Katif and North Shomron. (If you are interested in helping us publish the pamphlet, please contact shmuel@manhigut.org or call: 516-295-3222 [USA]). With G-d's help, we will publicize translated excerpts from the pamphlet in the near future.

G-d works in mysterious ways. At this point, the safest place for an Israeli to be is in Judea or Samaria. Nasrallah's "surprises" are not necessarily limited only to the wide range of his missiles. He may surprise us in other ways, as well. Our advice to the local councils is to start to prepare the infrastructure for huge refugee camps in Judea and Samaria (Yesha). Why be taken by surprise? It's time to prepare food, water, sewage pipes and all the basics that the refugees from Israel's cities will need. The Jewish settlements in the mountains of Judea and Samaria might well be the elixir of life for millions of Israelis.

With prayers for the safety of the nation of Israel in all places,
Moshe Feiglin

How To Win the War - 3 Steps

In order to really win this war, a number of logical -- albeit challenging -- steps must be taken:

Stage 1. Restore our Sense of Justice:

The ammunition of justice is always in the hands of the side fighting for eternal truth. The sense of justice is the ultimate weapon. Whoever surrenders his own justice -- gets defeated.

Where is our sense of justice?

"Last week." reports Moshe Feiglin, "I paid my monthly visit to the Temple Mount -- the most sanctified Jewish site, the cornerstone of our justice.

As we ascended toward the checkpoint at the entrance to the Temple Mount, we saw how people from all over the world pass through with just a perfunctory check. But the Jewish-looking Jews? The ones with the kippot (skull caps) and the side locks? As usual, they must stand to the side, where they are examined as if they were ticking time bombs. After the examination come the threats: "Whoever dares to pray on the Mount will be arrested and will be banned from coming again." Arab wakf personnel wait on the mount, bursting with pleasure at the opportunity to keep watch over the Jews and make sure that nobody dares move his lips -- lest they Heaven forbid pray to their G-d."

You can easily visit the Temple Mount as a tourist. But not as a Jew. It is important for the Israeli government to nurture the Moslem lie lest we, G-d forbid, reconnect to our own sense of justice.

What does all of this have to do with the war in the north? It's simple. As renowned poet Uri Tzvi Greenberg wrote over 60 years ago, "He who rules the Mount rules the Land." We lost the war over Israel's borders on the Temple Mount. The Mount is also our key to victory.

If we truly desire to win, we must re-conquer the Temple Mount. Torah scholars must delineate the places permissible to tread on the Mount according to Jewish law (for Jews and for Non-Jews as well). Entrance to areas not permissible by Jewish law must be strictly prohibited.

Stages 2 and 3 are impossible from within our current stage of consciousness. Only after we have restored our sense of justice and rely on Jewish legitimacy as opposed to legitimacy from the Moslems and Christians will we be able to begin to fight.

Stage 2. Eliminating the Real Danger First

Declare war on Iran and eliminate its nuclear capabilities -- even if this requires attacking nuclear installations in the heart of civilian areas. Those who shirked responsibility in the past got rockets on Haifa in the present. Those who shirk responsibility now will get a nuclear mushroom over Tel Aviv in the future. We are experiencing the preview of the "Mother of all Wars" and Israel's leadership -- to put it favorably -- just doesn't get it.

Stage 3. Expulsion of Enemy Civilians From South Lebanon

In the Six Day War all the Syrian residents of the Golan Heights (approximately 60,000) were pushed back into Syria, and the Golan Heights were annexed to Israel. Since 1973, the Golan Heights have been quiet. Israel must immediately enact the Territorial Law of Return. Any Biblical territory conquered by Israel will automatically be annexed to the State.

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Press Release: State of Emergency

In its hard-hearted behavior toward the residents of Israel's north, the Olmert government is re-enacting its cruel and impervious attitude toward the refugees from Gush Katif. Manhigut Yehudit, under the leadership of Moshe Feiglin, demands to immediately enact the State of Emergency laws and to compensate the citizens of the north for the disaster that the governments of expulsion and abandonment have brought upon Israel.

The American Rope

The commentators explain that America is giving us a long rope. That is not precise. The truth is that America is urging us to fight. Although it counters his political interests, George Bush courageously decided to fight the enemies of freedom. Bush doesn't understand the dimension in which the war is being fought and mistakenly attempts to identify a national enemy instead of a religious one. That is why he is losing. But what he does understand is that the Hizbollah's attack on Israel is the front line of the same war that he is fighting. Bush understands that an Israeli victory in this war is like the victory of the allies on the German front. The problem is that Israel lacks vision and cannot win. Instead of being a strategic asset -- Israel is turning into a burden.

An Israeli defeat will force the US to find a more serious strategic ally. Possibly Syria. Does that sound unrealistic? After Israel withdrew from the Sinai, Egypt became a US strategic partner. Until then, nobody would have dreamed of that scenario. America may like Israel more than it likes the Moslems (or at least it hates Israel less). But, as we know, business is business and international relations are determined according to a country's interests. In the Middle East jungle, a country that cannot defend itself does not justify its existence.

A number of US allies that became burdens have already measured the resilience of the American rope. Just ask the Vietnamese that the US abandoned in Saigon. The truth is that we are no better. Remember the Southern Lebanon Forces that Israel abandoned 6 years ago and Pollard...

Olmert: 'West Bank withdrawal still on'
Reaffirms plan as Israel fights in Gaza, Lebanon after similar evacuations

By Aaron Klein

JERUSALEM -- Even with a war in Lebanon after withdrawal from the country's border six years ago and with ground troops forced to return to Gaza following evacuation from the territory 11 months ago, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said yesterday Israel will forge ahead with his plan to pull out of Judea and Samaria.

"We will yet evacuate communities and it is important to me to complete this chapter as soon as possible so that we will be able to continue as a strong and united nation for the challenges that await us," Olmert told a group of Israelis evacuated last summer from the Gaza Strip.

Judea and Samaria, territories also c! ommonly called the West Bank, are within rocket-firing range of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Israel's international airport.

The prime minister, whose Kadima Party was formed specifically to carry out a withdrawal from Judea and Samaria, told the Gaza evacuees he is "convinced that we made the right decision to carry out the disengagement plan [from Gaza], and it is better for Israel that you are not living in the Gaza Strip at this time."

Since Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip last August, rockets have been fired almost daily into nearby Jewish communities, Hamas has been elected to power and both Israeli and Palestinian officials have stated al-Qaida has infiltrated the territory. Egypt recently announced the terrorists who carried out April's deadly triple-bomb blasts in the Sinai resort town of Dahab trained for the operation in the Gaza Strip with local Palestinians. They said Gaza-based terrorists helped finance the attack.

Israel last month mounted its ongoing ground invasion of Gaza after Hamas carried out a raid against a military installation in which Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was abducted.

Israel withdrew from Lebanon in 2000. It had occupied a small section of Lebanon's border with Israel following repeated attacks by Palestinian terrorists in the area. Since the withdrawal, Hezbollah has staged numerous attacks against Israel, including rocket bombardments of civilian population centers, raids against military outposts and ambushings and kidnappings of Israeli troops. Israel says Hezbollah built an arsenal of more than 13,000 short- and medium-range rockets capable of hitting central sections of the Jewish state.

Israel is in its 14th day of a military campaign against Hezbollah guerillas in Lebanon following a Hezbollah raid earlier this month in which eight Israeli soldiers were killed and two were abducted. The past two weeks, Hezbollah has fired more than 2,000 Katyusha rockets at northern Israel, killing 15 and placing one third of the Israeli population under the threat of rocket attack.

Olmert's plan seeks to evacuate more than 95 percent of Judea and Samaria, which borders Israel's main population centers.

Several recent public opinion polls showed the majority of Israelis now oppose a Judea and Samaria withdrawal. The leaders of Egypt and Jordan have expressed reservations about the plan, fearing terrorism can spill over into their respective countries. (link:

Housing and Construction Minister Meir Sheetrit, a senior member of Olmert's Kadima Party, told reporters this month he thought it was unlikely any Judea and Samaria withdrawal could be implemented in the near future and that others in Kadima have been quietly expressing reservations about the Judea and Samaria evacuation plan.

Meanwhile, Olmert yesterday assured the Jewish Gaza evacuees Israel still cares about them.

"I know that you are angry," he said. "I know that you think that you need to be in Gush Katif. We think differently. The government will invest so that each evacuee feels that the state cares about him and so that your children love the country like your grandfathers did. It is important to me that you know that we are acting out of the same love for Israel that you have."

As WND reported, the vast majority of Jewish residents of the G! aza Strip evacuated by Israel are unemployed, have yet to find permanent housing and have not received full compensation promised to them by the Israeli government.

"The situation is extremely grave," said Dror Vanunu, a former Gaza resident and the international coordinator for the Gush Katif Committee, a major charity organization representing the Gaza Jewish refugees. "It is at emergency status in many cases."

Olmert's Deception - It Has Never Been] All Quiet On The Northern Front
by David Bedein
March 3, 2005

On February 18th, 2005, during a public presentation f! or the annual Jerusalem meeting of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Israel's Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert faced a challenge from a questioner. The questioner asked Olmert how he could trust the intentions of Abu Mazen, since Abu Mazen has been allowing terrorists under his jurisdiction to arm themselves to the teeth.

Olmert's reaction was passionate. He pounded on the podium and exhorted people to examine "Israel's withdrawal from Lebanon as a model which Israel would apply to Gaza and Samaria." Olmert explained that Hizbullah terrorists now stationed in former Israeli army positions throughout Southern Lebanon had accumulated 15,000 missiles and mortars in Lebanon. Continuing to pound on the podium, Olmert that "they have never, never, never used missiles against Israel on the northern border since Israel's withdrawal from Lebanon in May, 2000."

I found Olmert's comments to be incredible. My son Noam served on the northern border in an IDF combat unit for almost three years and was under fire the entire time This was not at some kind of summer camp.

Our news agency dispatched a reporter to a press reception on February 23rd, at Jerusalem's Beit Agron International Press Center in Jerusalem, to ask Olmert if he stood behind his statement that the Hizbullah had not fired any missiles into Israel since Israel's withdrawal in May, 2000. The reporter showed Olmert a declassified IDF situation report from June 8th, 2004, the day that Noam completed his IDF service.

The IDF document shown to Olmert spoke for itself:

"In the four years since the IDF unilaterally redeployed its troops from Lebanon, the following attacks on Israel took place from the north: 34 attacks with mortar shells and anti-tank missiles into northern Israel; 7 shooting attacks with light arms fire into northern Israel; 8 roadside bombs that were planted in northern Israel; 127 times when anti-aircraft missiles were fired into northern Israel; 5 Katyusha rocket attacks into northern Israel; 10 infiltrations into northern Israel; 11 soldiers killed in northern Israel, while three IDF troops were kidnapped and murdered; 50 soldiers were wounded in northern Israel; 14 civilians were killed in northern Israel."

Olmert glanced at the IDF report, stood his ground, and reiterated his stand that "I meant to say that they have not fired into Israel in the last five years." When the reporter showed Olmert that the IDF report demonstrated that the Arab terrorists had continued firing missiles into Israel, killing 28 people, Olmert walked away, saying that he did not want to discuss it..

It is now abundantly clear that Ehud Olmert, the number two man in the Israeli cabinet and Prime Minister Sharon's point man in selling his political program to the Israeli public, will now be using the "example" of a unilateral withdrawal that "worked". Well, it worked in one essential way: less news reports come from the north because hardly any reporters are stationed there, so the mainstream media is bereft of news reports from the northern border. Hence, all "seems" quiet on the northern frontier, at least in the media

Indeed, during my son's tenure in the north, I, as a father and a journalist, received the reports about daily bombardments on the northern border from Noam - reports that were never reported anywhere in the Israeli media. But they often made it into my weekly news column in the Israeli weekly newspaper Makor Rishon.

The bottom line: Hardly anyone in Israel or abroad is aware of the arms buildup in southern Lebanon, and they are even more unaware of the attacks from the north, and how Israel's hasty withdrawal from southern Lebanon has left Israel vulnerable to attacks from the north.

What is clear from Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's public statements is that the Israeli government, seeking new ways to promote the Sharon Plan, which! will allow the PLO free reign in Gaza and northern Samaria - placing all of Israel in rocket range of Arab terrorists - will now try to sell the notion that 'all's quiet on the northern front.'

Contact Lee Caplan at leescaplan@yahoo.com

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 29, 2006.

Jared Israel is the Editor of the Emperor's New Clothes website (http://www.tenc.net/), which is dedicated to analyzing patterns of lies by the media and political figures. This article appeared as an Opinion piece on the Arutz-Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com) website July 27, 2006. It is archived at

We have been misinformed, to put it gently.

While claiming to support Israel's right to defend itself from Hizbullah and Hamas attacks, President George Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair have, in fact, mis-described the current Middle East war in a way that sets Israel up for media demonization, while creating public support for a "robust" (Kofi Annan's word) international intervention in southern Lebanon. Such an intervention would constitute a serious and possibly deadly threat to Israel.

In a defining press conference held 16 July, at the G8 meeting, President Bush said:

One of the interesting things about this recent flare-up is that it helps clarify a root cause of instability in the Middle East -- and that's Hizbullah and Hizbullah's relationship with Syria, and Hizbullah's relationship to Iran, and Syria's relationship to Iran. Therefore, in order to solve this problem it's really important for the world to address the root cause.

We, of course, are in continued discussions with Israel. All sovereign nations have the right to defend themselves against terrorist attacks. However, we hope that there is restraint as people respond. And one of our concerns, of course, is the fragile democracy in Lebanon.

Blair also blamed "...extremists backed, I'm afraid, by Iran and by Syria, who want to disrupt the positions in Lebanon and who want to create a situation of tension and hostility there."

Blair and Bush focus on Syria and Iran as the root cause of the fighting, and stress that the Lebanese government is not only not a guilty party, but is itself a victim of Iran and Syria, which "want to disrupt the positions in Lebanon" and "create a situation of tension and hostility there." In the press conference, Bush and Blair refer to Syria and Iran collectively more often than Lebanon.

What is the sub-text here? That since Syria and Iran alone are guilty, Israel should not be punishing weak, innocent Lebanon. This idea is implicit in Condoleezza Rice's July 21 statement, as reported (and embellished) by the Associated Press. Rice portrays Hizbullah as Syria's attack dog: "'Syria knows what it needs to do and Hizbullah is the source of the problem,' Rice said at the State Department as she previewed her trip, which begins on Sunday with a first stop in Israel."

And concerning the Lebanese government:

Hizbullah "extremists are trying to strangle it in its crib," Rice said of the Lebanese government, which has been a less potent force in the fractured country than the politically savvy and well-armed Hizbullah guerrillas.... Hizbullah exerts political control over southern Lebanon, overshadowing the weak democratic central government in Beirut.

Bush, Blair and Rice do say that Israel has the right to self-defense, but their stance - that the Lebanese government is blameless - has set Israel up for the massive demonization we have seen in the media, portraying Israel as a bully, overreacting to a fairly minor incident by Hizbullah by unleashing devastating attacks on an innocent, weak, struggling democracy.

The reality is quite different.

Hizbullah is not just "an Islamic militant group that operates in southern Lebanon" with Iranian sponsorship. Combining Islamic fanaticism with a modern anti-Semitic ideology derived from the Catholic Church and Nazism, with a media which spreads that ideology worldwide, and with a mass base and virtual state control of Lebanon, Hizbullah stands for the destruction of world Jewry and the creation of a world Islamic state, modeled on Iran.

The Lebanese government is not innocent. Facilitated by the US, the European Union and the UN, Lebanon has developed close ties with Iran. Hizbullah has been incorporated into the basic fabric of state domestic and international relations, giving free reign to Hizbullah's Nazi-like army, which makes democracy impossible, and defending Hizbullah's right to broadcast violent anti-Semitism worldwide. Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora now calls on the world to help him disarm Hizbullah, the better to justify a NATO-like intervention. Yet, when he formed the first Lebanese government after the withdrawal of Syrian forces, Siniora said, "It is [a] good thing to have Hizbullah in this cabinet." (Turkish Daily News) He told Agence France Presse that Hizbullah's cabinet role made him "proud."

Officially, Hizbullah got control of the important water and energy ministry. But in reality, it got much more. Guided by a carefully worded statement from State Department spokesperson Adam Ereli, that "to the extent that there are active members of a foreign terrorist organization in a government, then our ability to interact and work with those individuals is circumscribed," Fuad Siniora arranged with Hizbullah to pick a foreign minister who was a) to their liking, but b) not an active or open member of Hizbullah. So, Hizbullah in fact, but not in name, took control of Lebanese foreign policy.

This was no mystery - the media knew, and of course the US knew, too. (Obviously they knew; as is clear from reading Ereli's press briefings, that was the purpose of his tortuously worded statement.) When the US says "protect this poor, struggling, fledgling democratic government," they are talking about a government they worked with to put Hizbullah in a key position of power - the foreign ministry! - without openly violating US policy.

And all the while, Hizbullah maintained its own terrorist army, attacking Israel. Despite prodding from the UN, the Lebanese government has refused to remove Hizbullah forces in southern Lebanon, allowing them to man the so-called Blue Line, where they attack and kidnap Israeli soldiers and civilians, and fire antiaircraft weapons at Israeli towns. This is clear from the UN's yearly report on southern Lebanon, which, though worded to equate Israel and Hizbullah, makes it clear that a) Hizbullah is the provocateur, and b) they play this role with Lebanese government support.

Media reports focusing on civilian suffering - real, exaggerated and sometimes invented - and statements by Western leaders, all push for an armed multinational force for southern Lebanon. Such a force would likely be comprised of troops under the command of states that portray Israel's conflict with Palestinian Arabs as the cause of the Arab-Israeli conflict (rather than the other way around), and that do not consider Hizbullah a violently anti-Semitic political army. Such a multinational force would have much in common with William Walker's Kosovo Verification Mission. It too had the stated purpose of separating belligerents in Kosovo in 1998. And its member states were hostile to Yugoslavia. According to Kosovo historian Cedomir Prlincevic, that multinational force was used as a cover for upgrading and training the Kosovo Liberation Army (for which substitute "Hizbullah") terrorists.

Once a powerful multinational force was ensconced in southern Lebanon, it would be in position to intervene directly in Israel and the disputed territories. That would be disastrous for Israel.

Contact Sergio Tessa (HaDaR) at HaDaR-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by Women in Green, July 29, 2006.
This was written by Caroline Glick and it appeared in the Jerusalem Post.

Today US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will meet with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. The press reports leading up to their meeting were full of details about how European armies wish to send their forces to Lebanon. The reports also noted that Israel will be expected to surrender the Shaba Farms on Mount Dov to Lebanon in exchange for promises of security.

For their part, Israeli leaders from Olmert to Defense Minister Amir Peretz to Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni have been demonstrating a disturbing lack of resolve. Their statements expose a consistent watering down of the goal of the IDF's mission in Lebanon - from destroying Hizbullah as a fighting force to weakening it as a fighting force and "paving the way for a diplomatic settlement" that will apparently include Hizbullah.

On the other hand, other voices make clear that despite the best wishes of the government and the Israeli left-wing intelligentsia, it is far from clear that the IDF will end its operations without victory achieved.

For instance, writing in The Sunday Times, former Conservative MP Michael Portillo told his British countrymen that their hostility for Israel and the US aside, "The bloody truth is that Israel's war is our war." Portillo went on to argue that given the threat that Iran and Hizbullah pose to Britain itself, "for us to turn against Israel and America would be perverse and potentially suicidal."

STRENGTHENING the view that opposition to war against Iran and its proxies is suicidal, it was reported Sunday that Bulgarian border guards along their border with Romania had intercepted a British truck filled with radioactive materials for building a so-called dirty bomb. The components, which included dangerous quantities of radioactive caesium 137 and americium-beryllium, were stored in 10 lead-lined boxes addressed to the Iranian Ministry of Defense.

According to the Daily Mail, this was the second time in less than a year that a British shipment of nuclear materials had been stopped by Bulgarian border guards. Last August, Bulgaria stopped a shipment of zirconium silicate, which can be used as a component of a nuclear warhead, at its border with Turkey en route to Iran.

THE CURRENT campaign in northern Israel and Lebanon has brought into sharp focus the major pathologies and strengths of the West in fighting the Iranian-led jihadist axis. The British government's push for a cease-fire, together with the enthusiasm of the UN and France for sending their own troops to Lebanon to protect the Lebanese from the "disproportionate" Israelis; the demand of Israel's radical Left that a deal be made with Syria; and the demands of leftist ideologues in the US that an artificial deadline be set for the conclusion of Israel's operations in Lebanon all point to a similar pathology.

As a group, the ideological Left rejects the notion of victory in war for Western forces (although it is fine for jihadists); rejects the notion that there are enemies that are impossible to appease; and specifically rejects the idea that Israel has a right to defend itself against its enemies, let alone vanquish its foes.

LET US BE clear. The European foreign ministers and UN envoys who are tripping over one another on their way to Jerusalem are the same European foreign ministers and UN officials who brought about the misguided American decision to throw out 27 years of US practice and officially engage the mullahs in Teheran.

That is, the same European governments now jockeying for a place in an international force that will protect Hizbullah from destruction are the ones who have been stymieing American attempts to take concerted action against Iran's nuclear weapons programs for the past three years.

This is the pathology of the West. For if one takes the ideology of appeasing unappeasable foes to its logical conclusion, appeasing states will eventually join forces with their enemies against themselves, or, as Portillo put it, they will become suicidal.

AND SO, Britain's Department of Trade and Industry can give export licenses to dirty bomb components en route to Iran. And so American columnists named Cohen can tell the world that Israel's existence is a mistake. And so, Javier Solana, the EU's foreign policy chief, can refuse to acknowledge that Hizbullah is an Iranian-run terrorist organization dedicated to Islamic world domination even as its supporters throughout Europe hold mass demonstrations where they hold signs calling for Europe's destruction at the hands of Hizbullah and Iran in the name of Islam.

And so Yossi Beilin can say that Israel doesn't need to worry about the repercussions of standing down while a fifth of its population sits in bomb shelters, because Hizbullah is just a measly terrorist organization that poses no real threat to the country.

On the other hand, events of the past two weeks have also shown some of the West's greatest strengths in fighting the war so many of its powerful citizens and statesmen refuse to acknowledge.

First of all, the IDF has discarded its dangerous delusions that it will be possible to win this war by remote control. Today it fights like an army that knows it is both at war, and at war with an enemy that needs to be destroyed, whatever the price may be.

SEVERAL supporters of Israel were quick to write off the IDF in the wake of unsupported statements by Chief of General Staff Dan Halutz and his generals last week, in which they announced - based perhaps on the tonnage of ordnance IAF jets dropped on Lebanon - that Israel had destroyed up to fifty percent of Hizbullah's capacities.

"Israel is losing this war," these commentators moaned, not recognizing that the IDF is capable of learning from its mistakes. "Israel's intelligence services fell asleep on their watch," it was said.

But these eagerly defeatist voices do not recognize that the failure was not one of intelligence, but of politics. Mesmerized by the dovish ideologies propounded by three consecutive governments, it took the General Staff a week to understand that Israel was at war.

BUT NOW they know. And now the IDF is fighting well, boldly and effectively on the ground. Halutz initiated a rolling mobilization of the reserves, and the IAF has pulled back to its proper supportive role.

As well, it is impossible not to recognize the Bush administration's centrality in the current campaign. Not only is the US rearming the IAF with bunker buster bombs, it is making certain that its own public and the international community recognize that what is at stake here is far greater than the well-being of Israel's citizens.

As President George W. Bush has made clear, this is not just Israel's war. This is a campaign of the Iranian-led axis of jihad that seeks to dominate the entire free world. And echoing Bush are voices like Portillo's that are heard from Beirut to Sydney.

Moreover, by rising to the challenge Hizbullah, Syria and Iran have placed before it, the entire Israeli public is setting an example for its army, its government and the world to follow. Families in the North are stoically accepting the around-the-clock bombardments and standing strong in their demand for victory. Families in the rest of the country are opening their homes to thousands of refugees from Haifa and Nahariya and Tiberias.

As a friend put it the other day, "Halutz has no choice but to win. Israel is a country with five million chiefs of staff and they are all breathing down his neck."

FINALLY, the campaign in Lebanon is indeed the opening salvo of Iran's war against the free world. But this works both ways.

Iran and Hizbullah believe that the ferocity of the attacks against Israel will deter us all from taking action against Iran's nuclear facilities. But by giving the West the opportunity to fight it first in Lebanon, Teheran is providing the US, Israel and others with critical intelligence about its own installations. The subterranean bunkers in south Lebanon that IDF ground forces are now conquering were built by Iranian Revolutionary Guards units and designed by Iranian engineers - the same forces that conceived and constructed Iran's nuclear installations.

IN 1982, when Israel destroyed the Syrian Soviet-made and trained air force in Lebanon, it was able to provide the US with critical information about the Soviet Air Force and its air defense systems that enabled the US to outstrip both in a manner that all but sealed the fate of the evil empire. Today, by fighting Iran's proxy, Hizbullah, Israel is amassing information that will be critical for planning a successful strike against Iran's nuclear installations.

It is impossible to know what will actually be discussed today as Olmert meets with Rice. But it must be hoped that now that the US, Israel and other Western states are acknowledging the true nature of the war against Israel, they will abandon their suicidal demons and use this campaign as a stepping stone for neutralizing its chief instigator: The Islamic Republic of Iran.

Ruth and Nadia Matar established Women For Israel's Tomorrow (Women in Green), an activist group of women based in Jerusalem. Their website address is http://www.womeningreen.org

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 29, 2006.


If for a moment your thought you are well versed in the English language or you understand phrases expressed in the English language ... think again...

The slimy, bias, dubious, and distorted and destructive language used by the international community that has lost all its morals.

The FINAL solution for the future of Israel is the last 2 paragraphs.

This article is by Victor David Hanson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is the author, most recently, of A War Like No Other. How the Athenians and Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War. It appeared on National Review Online
(article.nationalreview.com/?q= MjI4MWIzODNlYjM3Yzg1M2FiNTEzMWMyNzg1ZDIzNzQ=).

Words take on new meanings as Israel struggles to survive.

A "ceasefire" would occur should Hezbollah give back kidnapped Israelis and stop launching missiles; it would never follow a unilateral cessation of Israeli bombing. In fact, we will hear international calls for one only when Hezbollah's rockets are about exhausted.

"Civilians" in Lebanon have munitions in their basements and deliberately wish to draw fire; in Israel they are in bunkers to avoid it. Israel uses precision weapons to avoid hitting them; Hezbollah sends random missiles into Israel to ensure they are struck.

"Collateral damage" refers mostly to casualties among Hezbollah's human shields; it can never be used to describe civilian deaths inside Israel, because everything there is by intent a target.

"Cycle of Violence" is used to denigrate those who are attacked, but are not supposed to win.

"Deliberate" reflects the accuracy of Israeli bombs hitting their targets; it never refers to Hezbollah rockets that are meant to destroy anything they can.

"Deplore" is usually evoked against Israel by those who themselves have slaughtered noncombatants or allowed them to perish -- such as the Russians in Grozny, the Syrians in Hama, or the U.N. in Rwanda and Dafur.

"Disproportionate" means that the Hezbollah aggressors whose primitive rockets can't kill very many Israeli civilians are losing, while the Israelis' sophisticated response is deadly against the combatants themselves. See " excessive."

Anytime you hear the adjective "excessive," Hezbollah is losing. Anytime you don't, it isn't.

"Eyewitnesses" usually aren't, and their testimony is cited only against Israel.

"Grave concern" is used by Europeans and Arabs who privately concede there is no future for Lebanon unless Hezbollah is destroyed -- and it should preferably be done by the " Zionists" who can then be easily blamed for doing it.

"Innocent" often refers to Lebanese who aid the stockpiling of rockets or live next to those who do. It rarely refers to Israelis under attack.

The "militants" of Hezbollah don't wear uniforms, and their prime targets are not those Israelis who do.

"Multinational," as in "multinational force," usually means "third-world mercenaries who sympathize with Hezbollah." See "peacekeepers."

"Peacekeepers" keep no peace, but always side with the less Western of the belligerents.

"Quarter-ton" is used to describe what in other, non-Israeli militaries are known as " 500-pound" bombs.

"Shocked" is used, first, by diplomats who really are not; and, second, only evoked against the response of Israel, never the attack of Hezbollah.

"United Nations Action" refers to an action that Russia or China would not veto. The organization's operatives usually watch terrorists arm before their eyes. They are almost always guilty of what they accuse others of.

What explains this distortion of language? A lot.

First there is the need for Middle Eastern oil. Take that away, and the war would receive the same scant attention as bloodletting in central Africa.

Then there is the fear of Islamic terrorism. If the Middle East were Buddhist, the world would care about Lebanon as little as it does about occupied Tibet.

And don't forget the old anti-Semitism. If Russia or France were shelled by neighbors, Putin and Chirac would be threatening nuclear retaliation.

Israel is the symbol of the hated West. Were it a client of China, no one would dare say a word.

Population and size count for a lot: When India threatened Pakistan with nukes for its support of terrorism a few years ago, no one uttered any serious rebuke.

Finally, there is the worry that Israel might upset things in Iraq. If we were not in Afghanistan and Iraq trying to win hearts and minds, we wouldn't be pressuring Israel behind the scenes.

But most of all, the world deplores the Jewish state because it is strong, and can strike back rather than suffer. In fact, global onlookers would prefer either one of two scenarios for the long-suffering Jews to learn their lesson. The first is absolute symmetry and moral equivalence: when Israel is attacked, it kills only as many as it loses. For each rocket that lands, it drops only one bomb in retaliation -- as if any aggressor in the history of warfare has ever ceased its attacks on such insane logic.

The other desideratum is the destruction of Israel itself. Iran promised to wipe Israel off the map, and then gave Hezbollah thousands of missiles to fulfill that pledge. In response, the world snored. If tomorrow more powerful rockets hit Tel Aviv armed with Syrian chemicals or biological agents, or Iranian nukes, the "international" community would urge "restraint" -- and keep urging it until Israel disappeared altogether. And the day after its disappearance, the Europeans and Arabs would sigh relief, mumble a few pieties, and then smile, "Life goes on." And for them, it would very well.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Aryeh Zelasko, July 29, 2006.

This comes from WorldNetDaily's Jerusalem Bureau. It was written by Aaron Sichel and appeared today at www.wnd.com

Israel's current strategy for countering Hezbollah activity in southern Lebanon is not working and should be immediately changed, warned intelligence officials, analysts and commentators, some charging domestic politics was holding back what they said was a much-needed massive ground assault.

"I hope our strategy is going to change, [and] that our government will take the Hezbollah situation with the seriousness it demands," Moshe Marzook, a professor at the Interdisciplinary Center University near Tel Aviv and a reserve military intelligence officer, told WND.

The officer's remarks echoed sentiments expressed by a growing number of military sources and analysts following a week that saw the loss in one battle of eight Israeli soldiers to a Hezbollah ambush and a record number of Hezbollah rockets -- 130 in a day -- slamming into the Jewish state from Lebanon.

"Right now there are a lot of discussions about what to do. -- There's an endless debate about whether or not to use [Israel's military] power," said Marzook.

In a cabinet meeting yesterday, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government voted against expanding Israel's ground assault in Lebanon while approving the call-up of an additional 15,000 reserve soldiers in part to replace some of the current brigades fighting in Lebanon.

Military officials had publicly petitioned for the approval of a massive ground assault, complaining the current troop levels fighting Hezbollah are not enough to overwhelm the well-trained Lebanese terror group. Top military leaders also complained they were being asked by politicians to send ground troops into certain villages when the air force can do the job.

"Look, at this point we've already lost one opportunity to destroy Hezbollah, and that's because we didn't go in using all of our forces," said Marzook. "In [Hezbollah stronghold] Bint Jbail the army was using some artillery guns. But it's not enough. Instead, we needed to be using air power after we warned the Lebanese [civilians] to get out.

"Only after a massive aerial bombing should we have sent ground troops in for mopping-up operations In Israel we're a democracy, and the army is totally subordinate to the political echelon, so we do the most we can with what the politicians give us."

Politicians out of their league?

Michael Widlanski, a professor and frequent adviser to Israeli security and foreign policy agencies, told WND Israel's current strategy is a non-starter for defeating Hezbollah.

"The problem for the military is that they're not being allowed to do what the country knows they need to do -- and there are already a lot of rumblings both in and out of government about this war being mishandled by Olmert and [Defense Minister Amir] Peretz," said Widlanski.

"Instead of attacking Hezbollah at, say, four points simultaneously, and forcing them to reveal their capabilities and intentions and throwing them off balance, the army now is striking Hezbollah at a single point, and then falling back, and then assessing that battle, and then they start discussing where to go next.

"It's slow, it's disordered and it's not very effective," said the analyst.

Marzook says Hezbollah strongholds "like Bint Jbail need to be demolished. They need to be hit without any ambiguity at all, so that Hezbollah clearly understands" that Israel will not permit them further shelter in Lebanon.

"I think we need to do it, or there will be more and more casualties in this fight," said Marzook.

In a biting analysis in Thursday's Jerusalem Post, Israel Air Force (IAF) Col. (res.) Dr. Shmuel Gordon describes the Olmert administration as "ignorant" about counterterrorism.

Throughout military history, there have been gaps between doctrine and reality. In the current case, the gap is particularly large, created by the [Israeli] government's ignorance of the appropriate strategy. The cabinet is ignoring, or simply doesn't understand, the principles of modern counterterrorism, especially those relating to air power.

Gordon claims the IAF's current operations "do not even come close to conforming" to proper strategy, and advises the IDF General Staff to "acquaint" Israeli politicians with the nature of air power.

Even Israel's dovish Ha'aretz newspaper asserted Friday the "the IDF must act with greater force" in Lebanon, and complained that Israeli politicians and senior military commanders "look as if they have been frozen in a huge ice cube."

"The political failures are continuing," asserts Marzook. "I hope the politicians will accept that this is a war we must win. That message is coming now from the media, from the society, and even from some politicians."

Caught between PR and the people?

"In reality," says Widlanski, "Olmert isn't yet able to admit that disengagement didn't work. That's why rockets flew into Israel from Gaza for 10 months without Olmert stopping them. In Lebanon, Hezbollah's been fortifying itself since the IDF withdrew six years ago.

"In both cases, a strong military response would have been seen as a de facto admission that withdrawal is an unfruitful strategy.

"Now Olmert's sent in the IDF, but only when Hezbollah forced him to -- and he hasn't gone in [with] full force, and the army isn't happy about that.

"[Olmert's] Kadima Party was founded last year for a purpose: to further the withdrawal platform of Ariel Sharon. If that platform is no longer usable, then Kadima has no clear raison d'etre."

David Bedein, an Israeli journalist, commented, "There is a general problem that has gotten worse since the late '90s and [former Prime Minister Ehud] Barak's tenure. There's a wider gap now between the citizenry and the leadership, and there's often a feeling that policy is driven by advertising professionals -- that some leaders base national security decisions on the advice of their PR team. In a crisis like this, those feelings will come home to roost."

Agreeing with those sentiments is Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick, who wrote yesterday:

"The Olmert government insists that Israel can separate itself from terror and jihad and live a 'normal life' by [unilaterally withdrawing], building a big fence and hiding behind it. The government knows that nothing will prove to the public the emptiness of its political rhetoric better than a serious ground invasion of southern Lebanon.

"And so, rather than shed its hallucinatory agenda, it clings to it with all the fervor of a Communist true-believer in Stalin's gulag. ... Our political leadership insists on paralyzing the campaign in favor of its narrow political and ideological interests."

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Posted by Boris Celser, July 29, 2006.
I want to share the following video with you: Click here.

It is the Israelite answer to the leader of Hezbollah, Nasrallah - a song in Hebrew that let him know what we think about him. with the background clip of the combat engineering IDF corps (with an extraordinary girls unit) and a taste of the IAF.

It has English subtitles.

This video is awesome!

Contact Boris Celser at celser@telusplanet.net

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Posted by Lawrence Uniglicht, July 29, 2006.

Much of the Arab and Persian street celebrates the fact that Hizbullah stands its ground against Israel, not at all acknowledging the Jewish democracy could easily level all enclaves infested by the fanatics thus totally obliterating that sworn enemy, however, choose a surgical course of restraint, morally bowing to Hizbullah's cowardly but effective strategy of hiding their bodies and weapons, including deadly missiles, behind Lebanese civilian human shields, including women and children. Much of the Arab and Persian street celebrates a misperception of strength exhibited by Hizbullah, extol the cadre's robed leader, yet fail to recognize the fact that a continuously besieged first world Israel, less than two tenths of one percent the size of the mostly Muslim Middle East, kicks third world Arab and Persian butt economically, at the planetary high tech vanguard of research and development, while most Middle East regimes rely on low tech raw material fossil fuel reserve economies for sustenance, not significantly embarrassed by this cerebrally challenged state of affairs when compared to the Israeli dynamo.

Furthermore, much of the "non-Muslim world-street" spews venom at Israel for a presumed "disproportionate response" against those that would annihilate the Jewish State if they could. No doubt, it is tragic that hundreds of Israeli and Lebanese casualties result from a war that Israel did not start, yet it is more than presumptuous for others to so berate Jews for defending their nation, when most ancestors of such "outraged" world citizens literally turned their cowardly backs while Nazis slaughtered not hundreds but six million Jews during a Holocaust beyond human comprehension. How might they expect descendents of those Jews to react to an enemy that would only wish the same fate on them? Get real!!! Moralizing out of context is shameful. Hizbullah is totally responsible for putting Lebanese civilians in danger. Israel has a moral obligation to protect its own citizens thus must vanquish low life Hizbullah creeps, whether or not they hide behind skirts of Lebanese women and immature bodies of young Lebanese children, like vicious dogs without teeth, willing to put innocents at risk so they might live to see another day. Not so amazingly, much of the Arab and Persian street, perhaps suffering from ego-deflating humiliation caused by their own lack of progress in a modern world, morphs these acts of cowardice into victories, giving themselves the pathetic psychological boosts they yearn for, rather then face a reality that can only be overcome by introspection and a willingness to do the hard work that would allow them to thrive and compete with civil secular societies.

For now, even erstwhile pie-in-the-sky Israelis must persevere with acumen, fully comprehending the fact that surrendering any land for peace is no longer an option. All remaining lands, indeed justifiably secured in Israel's 1967 war of survival, including the eastern sector of Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the Golan Heights, must immediately be taken off of any future negotiating tables, with or without the blessing of even formidable ally America.

Nothing would be gained from any such concession, as Israel's sworn Muslim enemies will never accept the existence of any Jewish State whatsoever in their perceived neck of the planet. Surely, when a nation's area is already incredibly tiny compared to hostile surrounding neighbors, it is worse than ludicrous to contract it further. End of that conversation!

Thus Israel must establish common ground and stronger ties between other enemies of its incorrigible fanatical fundamentalist Islamic enemies within the region i.e. presumably more moderate Muslim states such as Jordan, Egypt, and Turkey; mostly non-Muslim nations such as Russia, China, and India; all attuned to the anguish of jihadist violence. No doubt, fossil fuel related considerations, especially by the latter nations immersed in business partnerships with Iran, will convolute the possibilities of extreme friendships, but convoluted strengthened alliances are better than no alliances at all.

The bottom line, however, must be let land for peace "rest in peace". In fact, let Israel make that the unofficial but most powerful Eleventh Commandment. Future generations of Israelis will ever celebrate such a momentous decision!

Lawrence Uniglicht is a career civil servant, working for the Social Security Administration. He advocates for the State of Israel with an American perspective. He writes, "Advocating for the disrespected underdog has been my passion, no doubt Israel falls into that category." Contact him by email at luniglicht@snip.net

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Posted by Rachel Kapen, July 29, 2006.

He isn't perceived as much of an intellectual and although he learned a great deal since he became president he still didn't learn to say 'nuclear' properly. Also, if he doesn't have a written text in front of him he seems at a loss for words and tends to mumble, however, there one thing that couldn't take away from him and this is his steady and steadfast support for the State of Israel especially in these most difficult days when the U.S. support for Israel is invaluable for the Jewish state.

And as a matter of fact, this unmitigated support isn't easy on the U.S., the traditional friendship between U.S and Israel notwithstanding, when day in and day out millions of people the world over are exposed to horror pictures of destruction and dying of innocent women and children Israel inflicts on a neighboring state. Still, President George W. Bush has the courage to declare to the world again and again, to those who perhaps don't know or those who don't want to know, that Israel is is not to blame for the human tragedy but the Hezbollah and all Israel is doing is defending her and her citizens; lives, something every nation would have done under the same circumstances including the United States if attacked the same way by its neighbors Canada or Mexico.

Actually, at this very moment, it isn't known how long the United States will continue backing Israel and allowing it to go after the Hezbollah with the intensity it does. But no matter what happens, Israel couldn't have done what it did without U.S. unequivocal backing which came with a heavy price being that it is perceived more than ever as siding with the Jewish State and thus precluding it from any role in future peace negotiations - if ever this will happen - or securing the border between Israel and Lebanon.

After the president first declared that Israel has right to live and thus to self-defence, I received an e-mail asking me to write the president a thank you message for his unwavering support of Israel. I wrote to him that I thank him from the bottom of my heart for proclaiming that Israel has a right to exist and defend herself, something that should have been a given but unfortunately is not. There are many who don't believe in Israel's right to exist and either call publicly or think that she should be wiped off the map.

Throughout history our fellow Jews used to ask if it is good for the Jews. Now that there is an independent State of Israel we in the Diaspora and our brethren in Israel are asking if it is good for Israel and George W, is unquestionably good for Israel,

So to him and his Administration as well as the U.S. Congress a resounding Kol Hakavod.

Contact Rachel Kapen at skapen285466mi@comcast.net

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Posted by Barry Shaw, July 29, 2006.

The Lebanese weep excuses of weakness. The international community has bought their sob story. They cry that they were unable to stop Hizbollah, even though they welcomed them as brothers into their Government.

Then there is the issue of the Lebanese Government allowing Hizbollah to grow from a rag-tag terror group into a seven thousand strong, Iranian-trained, army with an estimated twelve thousand Katusha rockets plus far more sophisticated and deadly missiles.

Where were the Lebanese Government six years ago, before Hizbollah owned such an awesome arsenal? Apologists for Lebanon would claim that the Government was hostage to Syria at that time. They were certainly either hostage, or partner, of Hizbollah leading up to the recent conflict. Which?

We may accept that the Lebanese army would perform an awful job patrolling their southern border with Israel. We may also agree that they need the forceful arm of an international force with powers to disarm, arrest, or stop, in an way necessary, Hizbollah or others that would destabilize the area by launching further terror attacks against Israel.

Israel will degrade Hizbollah's stockpile of lethal weaponry. There may be a force guarding the border, though this will bring no great confidence to Israel's northern citizens. The UN, NATO, or any other force imported into any of the world's trouble zones, have met with any great success. They have failed because there was always one side not committed to keep the peace. In fact, there is a bloody history of such imported forces being massacred by offending terror groups. Lebanon's soil is drenched with the blood of American servicemen who were there to keep the peace. They were killed by the very Hizbollah that is engaging Israel today. Does anyone think that they would give up on their radicalism because of an overseas force imposed on them?

So where should the Lebanese Government display its responsibility for it's own security, if it cannot patrol its border with Israel? An excellent place to start would be to control its other borders, namely its airport, sea ports, and border crossing with Syria.

Israel is paying a heavy and painful price not only protecting its own citizens but also reducing Hizbollah's hegemony and military capability. This must not be allowed to return. It is for certain that Hizbollah, with the eager assistance of its pay masters Syria and Iran, will eagerly begin to rearm. International soldiers and observers may be busy in the south, but Hizbollah will be restocked with the latest deadly missiles elsewhere in Lebanon. This must not be allowed to happen. Everything must be done to prevent this.

Future weaponry can only be brought into Lebanon via air, land, or sea. Access points into Lebanon may bring in humanitarian aid. They can bring in whatever is needed to build up their country. They can bring in tourists and investors. They cannot bring in lethal Iranian and Syrian rockets, missiles, nuclear bombs, or any other type of weaponry.

It must be the first and vital imperative that access to the tools of a future war, and the potential for a future destruction of Lebanon, be effectively blocked.

Can such an essential task be safely entrusted to the Lebanese Government? Are they willing or capable of undertaking this important responsibility? If the Lebanese cannot be trusted in gurding their southern border, they cannot be trusted to prevent the rearming of Hizbollah through their own border crossings, and access points.

Or, on this substantial issue, do we need an international force to observe, intercept, and confiscate, such dangerous imports?

One final note. Much has been discussed, both in diplomatic and media circles, about the need of an international force to patrol and protect the Lebanese-Israeli border and southern Lebanon. It is glaringly scary that the issue of employing a force to oversee the ports and border crossings, and ensure that Hizbollah will not be resupplied by the malevolent provocateurs in Damascus and Teheran, has not been raised.

Has no one considered this future threat? Has it not been discussed? Is the international community unaware of the future danger of leaving this loophole open? This is the time to ensure that this threat is blocked.

Lebanon's borders should remain closed until assurance can be given, to Lebanese as well as to Israelis, that Hizbollah remains unarmed.

Barry Shaw made aliyah from Manchester, England, 25 years ago with his family. He now runs a real estate office in Netanya. He writes the "View from Here" columns from Israel. To sign up to receive his emails, contact him at netre@matav.net.il

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Posted by Dave Eberhart, July 28, 2006.

WASHINGTON -- "An international peacekeeping force in Lebanon will change nothing, and we will have chosen shame.

"We [not only Israel but the threatened West] need to choose war once and for all to eradicate that system," a former terrorist told NewsMax in an exclusive interview about the current Middle East crisis.

His name is Walid Shoebat and he is a man with a tough message.

He is also a former fundamentalist Islamic terrorist who, incredibly, reformed. He is now an author, lecturer, and unabashed friend of Israel.

He travels the United States repeating, in a modern context, Winston Churchill's warning to those who would appease Hitler's evil: "We have a choice between shame and war!"

Shoebat was born in Bethlehem. As a young man, he entered the belly of the beast and became a member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, participating in acts of terror and violence against Israel.

He was later imprisoned in the Russian Compound, Jerusalem's central prison, for incitement and violence against Israel.

After his release, Shoebat continued his life of violence in Bethlehem and the Temple Mount. After entering the United States, he worked as a counselor for the Arab Student Organization at Loop College in Chicago, where he persisted with his extremist activities.

But then in a life-changing event, his wife challenged him to study Israeli history and leave behind the Jew-hating indoctrination of his youth. He did and emerged from the "detoxification" experience with the fresh orientation that Israel is not a demon but simply perennially on the defensive against extremists.

The Arabic speaker, who now makes a study of the fanaticism that once enveloped his life, told NewsMax that the West had better abandon its political correctness and worries about world opinion and get down-and-dirty in the war on terrorism. And the West should start with taming the roots of that terrorism, the "mosque clergy" that preaches the hate.

"We have to treat the problem by going to the source of the problem, and that is what we are not doing," Shoebat said. "We are trying to destroy terrorist infrastructure - after it has been established. We have to look at the root causes of terrorism and the root causes spring from the mosque clergy." Shoebat explained that in his opinion there are thousands of hate-dispensing Islamic clergy, including hundreds in the United States:

"We can't touch it because we don't want to invade another religion," he lamented. "We have to treat this dogma - not as a religion - but as a political dogma."

All over the world, Shoebat wants laws enacted that just say - no more hate-mongering from so-called religious leaders: "Once a religion goes beyond its borders, it has to be treated differently. It has to be shut down. You have to arrest these clergy. You've got to throw them in jail."

Shoebat explained that in his view the offending clergy has, for example, been "schooling out" from Saudi Arabia and from the University of Egypt.

He derided the European Union's notion that if you can't beat them, then include them, and maybe they will learn from us - from our way of life - to change their ways.

"This is a stupid thing," he unabashedly concluded.

For sure, Shoebat doesn't mince words.

Within the context of the crisis with Israel and Lebanon, Shoebat said that Israel needed to invade the whole of Lebanon and cleanse it of the Hezbollah - once and for all.

"If you don't do that, it doesn't matter how much of a buffer zone that you establish, because you have to understand that we live in a world of technology and things get more sophisticated."

He goes on to note that Iran, a sponsor of Hezbollah, has rockets that can reach Israel as well: "Terrorists are very creative, you know. As a terrorist we were very creative. We find a different way or different method."

Shoebat said he was distressed that Israel was apparently not ready to occupy the whole of Lebanon because they are afraid of the condemnation of world community: "As long as we are worried about the feelings of the world community, we are never going to really eradicate the problem.

"We either hit them now, or we have to hit them much harder later, and it is going to be much more expensive and much more deadly."

No Room for Negotiation

The negotiation thing is a raw spot with Shoebat, who routinely compares what Arabs say in English to what they say in Arabic. Basically, he is of the opinion that from the fanatics' deeply rooted and dogmatic point of view, there can be no treaties with an enemy.

So if Israel gains the upper edge militarily, he opined, and even if Syria agreed to some kind of truce, any cease fire would only be temporary - until Syria's "puppets" in Lebanon, the Hezbollah, regroup and grow strong once again.

"Condoleezza Rice is going to come back empty handed," he suggested about the U.S. secretary of state's current peace mission to the Middle East.

"It is going to be worse," he added.

"It is not time to move to send the State Department to do any negotiations. This is the wrong time to do any negotiations. You have to wait until Israel eradicates Hezbollah. We have to aide Israel - even if we stand with Israel by ourselves."

Shoebat explained that, in his opinion, the Middle East is a very fragile society, where everybody is afraid of being painted as a pro-America, pro-Zionist.

"Prime ministers and presidents in the Middle East can not get elected by being pro-America. This is what you have in Iraq. Iraq should be the lesson," he noted, referring to the Iraq president's recent overt and controversial sympathy with the Hezbollah.

Shoebat added that the president of Iraq knows that some day the Americans will be gone and he is going to have to reckon with Hezbollah. "He supports Hezbollah because of the tie with Iran. They are afraid of Iran."

"Yeah, we should negotiate Syria. It is not wrong to sit down at the table with Syria." "But," Shoebat emphasized, "the message must be, ?You dismantle Hezbollah, then we negotiate with you.'"

"Look, this has nothing to do with jobs," Shoebat impatiently explained. "The issue of fundamentalist Islamic terrorism has nothing to do with land. Gaza was given back. Nothing changed, and it even became worse. It has nothing to do with poverty ...

"It is the dogma of Islamic salvation that you must conquer the world for Islam ... They want to destroy the West. They want to establish Shia Islamic law all throughout the world. They have this crazy dogma - and somebody's got to take them seriously."

Shoebat wants Americans to finally understand the true volatile nature of the beast they are up against: "Over 90 percent of Pakistanis want an Islamist state. They have nuclear weapons already, and the regime in Pakistan is so sensitive that it could be collapsing any moment as we speak ...

"You have a country like Iran building nuclear and flexing its muscle on the whole Middle East region ...

"You have Sudan where they killed 1.5 million Christian civilians ...

"You have Jordan where the majority of Jordanians supported Osama Bin Laden and still do ..."

Fanatical or not, wasn't it literally suicidal for Hezbollah to antagonize Israel with the kidnappings of its soldiers?

"Hezbollah did not know the extent of Israel's retaliation," Shoebat opined.

In his view, Hezbollah thought it would be more business-as-usual -- kidnap the soldiers and get Israel to exchange them for brethren being held by Israel. But Israel confounded the Hezbollah, drawing a line in the sand, saying basically that such kidnapping would only beget more of the same.

"The bargaining chip didn't work their [Hezbollah's] way," he explained.

?We' Terrorists Are Very Patient

Shoebat is known to start his lectures with, "I am not ashamed to stand in front of you and say I am Walid Shoebat and I used to be a Palestinian terrorist."

Though now long separated from the murderous fundamentalist movement, the now middle-aged man who lives in northern California will occasionally slip and use the collective "we" in talking about the terrorists: "Hitler was about establishing his Nazi dogma throughout the whole word. Communism was the same thing.

"This is the kind of system. They have no respect for borders, just like Communism and Nazis. The end justifies the means - it doesn't matter how you do it, or how long it takes, as long as we get what we want in the end."

Yes, patience is the message, Shoebat preaches. The extremists outlasted the Russians in Afghanistan and they will eventually outlast the American occupiers as well, he says.

The same sorry scenario is also potentially true with Iraq.

And the patience thing extends all the way to the American homeland, Shoebat warned: "People ask me the question how come we haven't been hit [since 9/11]? Well, what they are looking for is a grand finale. They want to cripple America by one event. This is why you don't see small-time bombings in America... They are waiting to get a dirty bomb, a nuclear bomb of any sort and blow up a few cities.

"Is that what it is going to take to wake America up?"

"After an attempt to destroy trains in New York and after an attempt to destroy the Sears Tower and after an attempt of Canadian Muslims to blow up buildings, after Bali, and after all the evidence that we have - we not doing something about it. I think we are in deep trouble."

Democracy-Building Is Not a Magic Bullet

Shoebat derided the American insistence of including the Jerusalem Arabs in the Palestinian electorate. "You know, Israel warned America. Look, this is not an issue of democracy here because if you allow the Jerusalem Arabs to vote, they are going to elect Hamas."

In Shoebat's view, there have never been any true democracies in the Middle East -- and most likely, there're never will be: "You show me in history, in 55 Muslim states, when was there ever a real democracy established? So for America to think that they can go and establish a democracy in the Middle East, I think is a very dangerous thing."

Picking the Enemy and Choosing War

All else said, returning to Shoebat's mantra of choosing war over shame, he wants the West to wake up to what he sees as the painful but only realistic course of action: "We can eradicate Iran. It is not a hard thing to stop Iran. But the will of the West is not there. They are not willing to understand, much less see, the writing on the wall."

Shoebat sees the West as burying its collective head in the sand and not facing the grim reality -- or matching the enemy's fierce and rigid mindset:

"Now we have to go fix Lebanon," he lamented, expelling a breath. "We have to send aide. We have to establish a peace force. We have to send money - and all of these things. Here we are sending all of this aide to Iraq.

"We have to fix the whole world's problem. We can't do that. That is not what the American position should be. The American position should be that if any country in the Middle East wants to join us, welcome. Anyone who wants to support terrorism, then you are an enemy. End of story."

Shoebat signs off -- there is yet another speaking engagement to go to -- another forum to preach the hard realities he learned from dwelling within the belly of the beast.

He leaves some parting thoughts: "If the West wants to win, they must be even more stalwart and more intractable than the fierce, sly and ever-patient enemy."

And, finally: "They must choose war over shame."

This appeared in NewsMax.com and is archived at

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Posted by Committee Lmaan Tzion<, July 28, 2006.


The Committee Lmaan Tzion has launched a petition campaign against the "convergence/realignment" plan. Our goal is to garner 10,000 signatures by January and distribute copies of the petition to important Jewish organizations and U.S. and Israeli politicians. Please sign for your name to be inserted on the petition.

The text of the petition reads as follows:

"We the undersigned declare that the policy of land withdrawal and expulsion of Jews from their homes in Yehuda and Shomron (the West Bank), as well as the policy of dividing Jerusalem, violates the Jewish right to and the integrity of the Land of Israel and our eternal Capital of Jerusalem, and constitutes an immediate and long-term threat to the safety and survival of the Jewish people everywhere."
To sign, click here.
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Posted by Sandy Rosen-Hazen, July 28, 2006.

My grandson, Nissim, is being treated for injuries at the Safed hospital...

Giving well-earned credit where it IS due.....nearly 100 people send me e-mails wishing us well & praying for our safety!!!! THANK YOU!!!! I'll now, G-d willing, set about marathon typing, to answer each and every one of those wonderful e-mails!!!!

Love always,

P.S.....For anyone wishing to help Safed, directly: The organization "Lev Uneshama" is most helpful, in so many ways!!!! Donations to them are 100% used for aid to the individual people of Safed.....NO money is ever withheld for any reason (all work is done on a purely volunteer basis)!!!!

On several occassions, we've approached them in order to help people who needed various things.....it is amazing that each and every time we approached this organization with a specific request, they never failed to reach out and help!!!!

"Lev Uneshama" not only provides food for the needy, but they succeed in supplying many families with warm clothing in the winter, shoes, eye-glasses, dental care, etc.!!!! There are really not enough words to describe this marvelously generous organization!!!!

Now, more than ever, as Israel finds itself in a difficult time, "Lev Uneshama" is succeeding in sending food packages, toys, clothing, etc., to as many people as possible in the city of Safed's bomb shelters!!!!

Please share this information with all those generous people who you think may find it in their hearts to help this wonderful organization!!!! You can visit their Web Site to get an idea of what they are really all about.....at: www.levuneshama.org!!!!

Checks (all tax deductable) can be sent to: "To save a life",
please note, on your check, that it is for "Lev Uneshama"!!!!
Please address to: Mr. Jerry Klinger
16405 Equestrian Lane Rockville, MD. 20855 U.S.A.

Sandy Rosen-Hazen lives in Safed. Contact her at Sandy@israel.net

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Posted by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu, July 28, 2006.

Hizbullah refused to allow civilians to leave their village and used mosques in their ambush on IDF soldiers at Bint Jbeil Wednesday.

Names of the nine fallen soldiers were released. Morale is high.

Hizbullah stored ammunition and weapons in mosques, knowing that the IDF does not attack religious sites. Civilians were not allowed to leave so that Hizbullah could use them as cover. IDF officers said they ordered pilots not to strafe Bint Jbeil in order to spare civilian casualties.

A United Nations peace keeping officer from Canada told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. that Hizbullah used the same tactic to draw fire on the UNIFIL post which resulted in the death of four U.N. observers. "This is their favorite trick," he said. "They use the U.N. as shields."

Morale of the Golani soldiers was extremely high after the bitter battle, the fiercest in many years. One of the soldiers injured in Bint Jbeil said from his hospital bed Wednesday night, "I want to go back and fight with my comrades. Morale is totally high. [The battle] was complex, and there is fear, but we have to take the fear and turn it around."

IDF officers are trying to cool down the soldiers' enthusiasm to take over Bint Jbeil. The troops marked the Hizbullah terrorists with an "x." "Tomorrow will see their death," they said. "Tomorrow they will pay the price."

The names of the fallen soldiers who fell at Bint Jbeil are:
Corporal Ohad Kleisner, 20, of Beit Horon
Lt. Alex Shwartzman, 24, of Acre (Akko)
Corporal Shimon Adega, 21, of Kiryat Gat
Sgt. Shimon Dahan, 20, of Ashdod
Corporal Asaf Namar, 27, of Kiryat Yam
Lt.-Col. Ro'i Klein, 31, of the Samarian community of Eli,
Lt. Amichai Merchavia, 24, also of Eli
Sgt. Idan Cohen, 21, of Jaffa.

Lt. Yiftah Shrier, 21, of Haifa, was killed in a separate incident when Hizbullah terrorists fired an anti-tank missile between Bint Jbeil and Marun A-Ras late Wednesday.

Three soldiers still are in serious condition, and 19 suffered light-to-moderate injuries in the ambush battle, which occurred around 5 a.m. (10 p.m. EDT). when dozens of Hizbullah terrorist guerilla fighters ambushed their hilltop position.

The IDF had maintained that the army was in control of the village, which is considered the capital of Hizbullah in southern Lebanon. Hizbullah has been building tunnels and stockpiling weapons in the six years since the IDF withdrew from the area, which they know thoroughly. The Hizbullah terrorist guerillas were well-equipped with Iranian- and Syrian-made rocket propelled grenades, anti-tank and mortar shells, Lau missiles and rifles.

Several troops were injured while trying to rescue others, in an evacuation that took more than six hours. Helicopter rescue pilots endured enemy fire, and several soldiers carried stretchers more than one mile.

Northern Command Head Maj.-Gen. Udi Adam said that despite the heavy loss of soldiers, the army recovered valuable intelligence information, and that large amounts of communication equipment, weapons and ammunition also were taken by the IDF.

"The soldiers displayed sangfroid, bravery and professionalism after they came under fire," he said. "We estimate that at least 15 Hizbullah guerrillas were killed in the village. There are also assessments that put the number of casualties on the Lebanese side at 40 to 50 dead fighters," he added.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu writes for Arutz-Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com). This article is archived at

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 28, 2006.

These are the people we should talk to and shake their hands?...

Fatah, Hizbollah, FPLP ....

Contact Sergio Tessa (HaDar) at HaDaR-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by D.J. Teeboom, July 28, 2006.

I wanted to tell you that as Jew and a Zionist, as a person who served in the IDF and who supports the war against Hezbollah 100%, I believe you have the right to publish as many disgusting anti-Israeli cartoons as you like. The freedom of speech is very dear to me. But don't worry. One day, when radical Islam gets out of control in Europe, we will be having a laugh on your expense too.

I must point out however, that the image of the Israeli-Nazi is getting a little bit boring. I hope this doesn't hurt your feelings, but we have been enjoying these kind of Israeli's-are-Nazi-cartoons for almost 60 years by now. And because of that, I feel I can tell you, as a friend of the Norwegian people, that after 60 years they're not really funny anymore. Oh, I'm so sorry, did that insult you? They were funny the first time, honest. Don't cry. I had a great laugh the second time, and the third, the fourth and the fifth. But after 60 years and thousands upon thousands of these kind of cartoons...I think you should at least consider to try something new. It's no use, I know you won't. We Jews are the only nation on earth that doesn't have to worry about what 'they will come up with next'. You are perfectly predictable. Maybe the Israeli ambassador should issue an official demand for original insults? I mean, as a serious nation and a regional superpower, don't we have the right to be insulted in some other way?

I hope you are not disappointed that Jews are not burning down Norwegian embassies and issuing death threats. It's simply not our style. Maybe that's a pity, because if we did such things the editor of this newspaper would appear on TV and tell everybody how much Jews and Israel should be respected. Your government leaders would tell the Norwegian people they should learn more about Zionism. Your leftwing intellectuals would visit the most violent extremist Jews. They would offer them their sincere apologies and upon their return they would sing the praises of the forbidden Kach and Kahane parties who only want to deport all the Palestinians, not to kill them. Look how moderate! After further outbursts of violence and death threats, some bright Norwegian politicians would call for Kach and Kahane 'to be integrated in the Israeli political process'. Heaven forbid.

You know that you have nothing to fear from Jews and that is why you allow yourself to stoop so low. It wouldn't be such a problem if only you (meaning Europe)showed a some spine regarding Islamic intimidation. But because you don't other people less civilized then Jews, are coming to the conclusion that in order to be 'respected', they have to burn down embassies and kill people. Is that really the future we want?

Contact Daniel Teeboom at d.j.teeboom@orange.nl or go to his website: www.hetvrijevolk.com

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 28, 2006.

This was written by Steven Stalinsky, the executive director of the Middle East Media Research Institute. It appeared July 26, 2006 in the New York Sun
(www.nysun.com/article/36717 ).

"Just like Hitler fought the Jews, we are a great Islamic nation of jihad, and we too should fight the Jews and burn them."

-- Hisham Shamas, political science student, at a symposium hosted by Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV at Lebanon's largest and only government-run university, Universit Libanaise, November 29, 2005

In June 1944, a Red Cross delegation was invited by Nazi Germany to Theresienstadt, a "spa town" where elderly German Jews could "retire" in safety, according to Nazi propaganda. However, it was really a transit camp for Jews on their way to Auschwitz.

In preparation for the delegation's visit, the camp underwent a beautification program, with gardens planted and barracks renovated. The Nazis produced a film using Jewish prisoners to show the world how well they were being treated (the entire "cast" would later be sent to Auschwitz). Theresienstadt served an important propaganda function for the Germans, and it is known by historians as an "an elaborate hoax."

Taking a page directly from the Nazis' propaganda playbook some 62 years later, the terror organization Hezbollah is manipulating the press in the same way. Hezbollah's press officer, Hussein Nabulsi, has been giving Western press and broadcast outlets, including CNN, the Boston Globe, and the Chicago Tribune, daily tours of bombed-out Hezbollah-controlled southern Beirut.

During the July 18 broadcast of Wolf Blitzer's "Situation Room" on CNN, Mr. Nabulsi took a CNN correspondent, Nic Robertson, to a bombed-out area he said was "only inhabited by innocent civilians." Mr. Robertson was overtly sympathetic to Hezbollah's claims, telling viewers, "We didn't see any evidence of military infrastructure."

Mr. Roberston's sympathy for Hezbollah later was criticized on multiple blogs; even the host of CNN's "Reliable Sources," Howard Kurtz, asked his colleague, "To what extent do you feel like you're being used to put up the pictures they [Hezbollah] want?"

In a report for the July 21 Boston Globe, Thanassis Cambanis wrote about his tour of the same area with Mr. Nabulsi, who admitted that his office -- Hezbollah's press office -- which he said was located in a "civilian area," was bombed. The Globe reporter wrote that the area "is full of obvious Hezbollah targets, including the organization's headquarters, its media office ... nestled among thousands of civilian homes."

Just as the Nazis had their weekly newspaper, Der Strmer -- which was a significant part of their propaganda apparatus, spreading venomous anti-Semitic caricatures and themes, including the blood libel and the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" -- Hezbollah has its own radio station and TV channel, Al-Manar.

Al-Manar is similarly a vehicle for spreading classic anti-Semitic subject matter, from Nazi forgeries to the blood libel and attacks on Judaism. The channel also frequently airs programs devoted to the killing of Jews and destruction of Israel. (See www.memritv.org to view examples.)

Hezbollah celebrates Holocaust denial, as well. "Jews invented the legend of the Holocaust," the leader of Hezbollah, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, said on April 9, 2000. During an appearance on Al-Manar on February 3, Sheik Nasrallah called Europe's leading Holocaust denier, Roger Garaudy, "a great French philosopher." On February 23, Sheik Nasrallah appeared on Al-Manar and praised another leading European Holocaust denier, David Irving, for having "denied the existence of gas chambers."

While Hezbollah has embraced much of Nazi Germany's anti-Semitism, it is not the heir apparent of the Third Reich. That distinction belongs to the Islamic Republic of Iran, which today has set out to launch World War III.

Just as Nazi Germany used its cohorts in France and Italy to carry out its killing, Hezbollah is following orders from its master Iran, which created it on February 16, 1985. Hezbollah's official manifesto includes a picture of "our leader," Ayatollah Khomeini, on its back cover. A Washington Post article from that year reported that Iranian Revolutionary Guards were "carrying out their missionary work, indoctrinating the Lebanese Shiites in the spiritual and political teachings of Khomeini."

As the Iranian parliament speaker, Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel, told the Iranian News Channel on July 18, "To Nasrallah we say -- the blood of Imam Khomeini rages in his veins."

Sheik Nasrallah's deputy, Sheik Naim Qasem, quoted the Iranian regime in explaining his organization's position on Israel and jihad in a June 2, 2002, interview on Al-Manar: "Muslims should annihilate Israel. ... Imam Khomeini said, 'The goal of this virus [Israel] that was planted in the heart of the Islamic world ... The solution is in annihilating the virus.'"

Anyone who has witnessed Iranian crowds chanting "Death to America" and "Death to Israel" during religious rallies led by the country's ayatollahs, or at Lebanese rallies led by Sheik Nasrallah, can see how similar they are to the rallies Nazi Germany held -- only then, the chants were "Heil Hitler."

Contact Sergio Tessa at Hadar-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by May Leiner, July 28, 2006.

Observer killed in strike wrote e-mail contradicting accusation against Israel

United Nations flag flies with Hezbollah banner at U.N. post (photo: Canadian Jewish News)

The United Nations post in Lebanon at the center of controversy over a deadly Israeli attack likely was being used as a "shield" by Hezbollah to fire rockets into the Jewish state, according to a former U.N. commander in Bosnia.

U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan has accused Israel of deliberately targeting the post where four officials of the world body were killed in an Israeli airstrike on the southern Lebanese village of El Khiam Tuesday night.

But retired Maj.-Gen. Lewis MacKenzie points to an e-mail by one of the observers killed in the attack that backs Israel's claim that it was targeting Hezbollah, reported the CanWest News Service of Canada.

The dead observer, Maj. Paeta Hess-von Kruedener, wrote an e-mail last week to the Canadian television network CTV that alluded to Hezbollah's tactics.

"What I can tell you is this, we have on a daily basis had numerous occasions where our position has come under direct or indirect fire from both (Israeli) artillery and aerial bombing. "The closest artillery has landed within 2 meters (sic) of our position and the closest 1000 lb aerial bomb has landed 100 meters (sic) from our patrol base. This has not been deliberate targeting, but rather due to tactical necessity."

MacKenzie said Hess-von Kruedener was indicating Israeli strikes were aimed at Hezbollah targets near the post, the Canadian news service reported.

"What that means is, in plain English, 'We've got Hezbollah fighters running around in our positions, taking our positions here and then using us for shields and then engaging the (Israeli Defence Forces)," he said.

McKenzie said this indicates Hezbollah purposely set itself up near the U.N. post, a tactic he observed in previous international missions.

McKenzie was the first U.N. commander in Sarajevo during the Bosnia civil war, CanWest reported.

The U.N. has claimed there was no Hezbollah activity in the area of the strike.

From his U.N. post, however, Hess-von Kruedener wrote he had a view of the "Hezbollah static positions in and around our patrol Base."

"It appears that the lion's share of fighting between the IDF and Hezbollah has taken place in our area," he wrote, noting later it was too dangerous to venture out on patrols.

A senior U.N. official asked by CanWest about the e-mail denied the world body had been caught in a contradiction.

"At the time, there had been no Hezbollah activity reported in the area," he said. "So it was quite clear they were not going after other targets; that, for whatever reason, our position was being fired upon.

"Whether or not they thought they were going after something else, we don't know. The fact was, we told them where we were. They knew where we were. The position was clearly marked, and they pounded the hell out of us."

Contact May Leiner by email at MayLeiner@cs.com

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Posted by Bryna Berch, July 28, 2006.

Seems like only yesterday that bin Ladin was ranting against foreigners polluting the sacred land of Saudi Arabia (SA). The ugliness of 9/11 was partial revenge for the nerve of the uppity Americans who dared to set foot in SA -- even if it was to protect the Saudis. This was his only concern. And now, his second-in-command is casting his evil eye on Israel -- which is preventing the Muslims from taking over all of the Middle East and Spain. So now Al-Qaeda is gungho to eliminate Israel -- mind you, not for the "noble" reason of aiding his fellow Arabs, the "Palestinians." No, it's because he wants all the Middle East (and control of the rest of the world) to be Muslim. He should get together with Peace Now. Don't care what Peace Now say they want -- they've done nothing but screw Israel for years.

This was written by Ezra HaLevi for Arutz-Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com).

Al-Qaeda second-in-command Ayman al-Zawahiri issued a call for Jihadists around the globe to attack Israel and make the entire region "from Spain to Iraq" into an Islamic kingdom.

The speech by the terrorist network's co-founder was broadcast on the Al-Jazeera Arabic satellite channel.

Al-Zawahiri declared a Jihad (holy war) against Israel on behalf of the global Jihadist movement. "All the world is a battlefield open in front of us," he said, rejecting the concept of an eventual cease-fire. "O Muslims everywhere, I call on you to fight and become martyrs in the war against the Zionists and the Crusaders... War with Israel does not depend on ceasefires. It is Jihad for sake of Allah and will last until our religion prevails from Spain to Iraq."

Islamists believe that since Spain was once controlled by Muslims, it must be wrested from the hands of "the infidels" in the same manner as Israel.

"The shells and rockets ripping apart Muslim bodies in Gaza and Lebanon are not only Israeli, but are supplied by all the countries of the crusader coalition. Therefore, every participant in the crime will pay the price," Al-Zawahiri threatened.

The Egyptian doctor was filmed in front of a photo of the World Trade Center and two top Al-Qaeda terrorists killed in recent years. This is Al-Zawahiri's tenth message released to the public this year.

It is unclear whether his declaration has a theological effect on his followers' desire to strike Israel. Already on February 23, 1998, he issued a joint fatwa (Islamic ruling), with Osama bin Laden, entitled "World Islamic Front Against Jews and Crusaders," which called upon Muslims to destroy Israel.

The Al-Qaeda number-two seemed to express a sense of admiration for Israel in his critique of the Muslim world. He also suggested that the world cared more about Israelis than Palestinians. "The 10,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israel's prisons do not move anything, while three Israeli prisoners have shaken the world," he said.

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Posted by Yossi Shomron, July 28, 2006.

Today I visited a refugee camp in the modern state of Israel. Actually, I live in the "internal refugee" camp of Nitzan; 480 prefab, upgraded caravans built for the expellees of Gush Katif. Four kilometers to the east, along the beach of Nitzan, is a new refugee "town", a tent city divided into two clearly designated areas: "Welcome from the northern areas" and "Welcome from the southern areas". Each area contains some 20 to 30 huge tents (approximately 25 by 40 meters each), with guards, fencing, bathroom facilities, and shuttle buses transporting people back and forth from highway 4. The new beach "town" contains thousands of Jews - refugees from missile attacks launched from Lebanon and the Gaza strip into Israeli towns and cities.

The government of Israel seems to be in the business of creating Jewish refugees. Either the government expels thousands of Jews from their homes in towns considered to be a liability to the state or the government allows its citizens to be bombed for more than 5 years (southern area refugees), or 2 weeks (northern area refugees). Okay, to be fair, the Arabs are the perpetrators of the missile attacks causing tens of thousands of Jews to flee their homes. But for 5 years S'derot, Gush Katif, and surrounding moshavim and kibbutzim have been bombed from distances of 1 to 8 kilometers and the IDF has been restrained by the government from responding effectively. Of course the IDF bombed the "usual suspects": empty fields, roads, bridges, bomb factories, terror headquarters, empty PA buildings and even live terrorists when caught in the act. By and large, the Gaza "civilian" population of Hamas, Fatah, PFLP, Islamic Jihad supporters as well as thousands of terrorist fighters (who don't wear a uniform or carry a weapon) remain off limits to the IDF.

And in the North? Again the usual list of targets has been bombed: bridges, roads, broadcast stations, Hezbalah bunkers and camps, and missile launchers and rockets when seen. The government of Lebanon, with a strong Hezbalah component, as well as Shiite southern Lebanon remain off limits to the IDF. To ensure that terror supporters in Lebanon don't pay a price, the inner cabinet of the Israeli govt. review all major IDF targets before bombing. Expect that as long as the Lebanese "civilians" and the thousands of Hezbalah supporters, terror operatives among them, remain untouched, the North of Israel will suffer the years of bombing that the South of Israel continues to endure. And the latest Israeli growth industry, internal Jewish refugees, will continue to grow.

Yossi Shomron and his family were among the 8-9,000 Jews who were expelled from their homes and farms and orchards by the Sharon-Olmert government.

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Posted by Menachem Kovacs, July 27, 2006.
You'll find the other pictures from this series at

Contact Menachem Kovacs at takovacs@comcast.net

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Posted by Avodah 15, July 27, 2006.
This article was written by Linda Harel and it appeared on today on YNet

GIYUS calls Jews of world to web duty

Want to support Israel online? Just download Megaphone from WUJS website and get all needed updates

When Giyus.org (http://giyus.org) noticed a poll on Albabawa.com, a popular Arabic website, asking whether the current violence in Lebanon is an Israeli provocation, they decided to help balance the results.

A message with a link to the poll popped up on the desktops of GIYUS' Israel-loving members and soon, the poll results jumped from an overwhelming yes to an over 80 percent no.

GIYUS (Give Israel Your United Support) is a new project that has recently been released by the World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS) in order to balance anti-Israel sentiment expressed on the web and influence public opinion.

To accomplish this, they created Megaphone, a free tool that can be downloaded from their website. Megaphone allows alerts to pop up on users' desktops every time it finds an attention-worthy article, poll or forum on the internet. Students and members of pro-Israel organizations are encouraged to visit the sites and express their opinions.

In addition to making users aware of problematic biased articles and anti-Semitism, GIYUS encourages them to write letters of approval to the editors of sites that publish positive articles to help increase their popularity.

The project is designed to be interactive. Megaphone users can contribute to its growth by reporting both biased and commendable websites and polls for consideration.

To attract users from around the world, GIYUS translates polls into English, French and Hebrew, and soon Spanish.

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 27, 2006.

This article was written by Shmuel Gordon and it appeared yesterday in the Jerusalem Post
(www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1153292006489&pagename= JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

Dr. Shmuel L. Gordon, a colonel (res.) in the IAF, is head of the Technology and National Security program at the Holon Institute of Technology, and an expert in national security, air warfare and counterterrorism. He is also the author of The Vulture and the Snake: Counter-Guerrilla Air Warfare: The War in Southern Lebanon.

A hard and fast rule of war is that the use of ground forces in urban combat is directly related to loss of life. In Gaza, the IDF has somehow learned to go in and get out with few casualties. Hizbullah is a different enemy, with different equipment, a different surrounding population and, perhaps, a greater motivation to fight.

Wednesday's casualties in Bint Jbail may indicate that Hizbullah has managed, yet again, to neutralize the IAF's technological advantages. The proper use of air power against a terrorist or guerrilla formation takes time, and herein lies Israel's problem.

Last week in Maroun a-Ras, several soldiers died fighting Hizbullah around their fortified bunkers. The correct use of military power in that situation would have been to use small special forces teams equipped with nothing more than GPS trackers, laser pointers and Uzi submachine guns.

The elite forces, instead of going into the bunkers, could have laser-painted the bunkers' positions to the IAF, which would have destroyed them. That would be the correct way to leverage Israel's technological advantage.

The massive bombings - the IAF's use of brute force - has its limitations with respect to high-value targets, and the deployment of ground troops neutralizes our advantages. When a soldier meets a soldier, when a Kalashnikov meets an M-16, when the fight is eye to eye, there are no technological advantages. It will always be like this.

Hizbullah has no qualms about losing 50 fighters, whereas we Israelis do, and the Islamists know it. Wednesday's battle will give Hizbullah a huge morale boost - regardless of how many fighters they have lost.

During the Lebanon War, I was in charge of the air force's underground command bunker. Every time the infantrymen got themselves into trouble, they would call on the IAF to "open the roads." This usually entailed civilian casualties. The air force chief at the time, Maj.-Gen. David Ivri, demanded that the ground forces provide quality intelligence to ensure that civilians were not being accidentally targeted. That is still the key now.

Counterterror air warfare strategy has developed a great deal in recent years. It is now based on new intelligence technologies that have enabled airborne systems to locate small mobile vehicles such as rocket launchers, and even a pair of terrorists trying to launch a Kassam rocket, and precision-guided munitions, which have made it possible to hit such targets quickly and accurately.

The most important characteristic of these systems is their ability to preserve the lives of innocent people located near the targeted terrorist.

To find, designate (by laser-painter, for example) and hit terrorists in a limited time frame, teams of special forces should join the battle. The new strategy integrates intelligence, air power and special forces into a combined force that plans its missions as surgical operations. Intelligence officers search for the highest-value targets, including leaders of the terrorist organization, its training infrastructure, professionals who produce dangerous bombs, and those who recruit suicide bombers.

The strategy is based on the assumption that it is almost impossible to demolish terror organizations in a short, intense war. On the contrary, the preferred scenario is a war of attrition. Step by step, operation by operation, the light at the end of the tunnel becomes brighter. Counterterror air warfare doctrine emphasizes using air power in a different way than in large-scale conventional warfare. The new doctrine prefers a longer but lower-intensity conflict.

The Israel Air Force's operations in the current campaign do not even come close to conforming to this concept. The government is attempting to use the air force's brute force to crush Hizbullah and to compel the powerless Lebanese government to control southern Lebanon with its own toothless army.

Throughout military history, there have been gaps between doctrine and reality. In the current case, the gap is particularly large, created by the government's ignorance of the appropriate strategy. The cabinet is ignoring, or simply doesn't understand, the principles of modern counterterrorism, especially those relating to air power.

The cabinet needs to take into consideration the strengths and weaknesses of the intelligence/air power/special forces mixture. It is the duty of the IDF General Staff to acquaint the civilian leadership with the limitations and capabilities of air power. The government need to have the information to set the goals, which will then dictate the military means and strategy. There is no alternative.

Contact Sergio Tessa at Hadar-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman, July 27, 2006.

Charles Krauthammer in his usual brilliant, trenchant manner made a statement on Fox News tonight that we can only hope the Israeli government heard (and I will do my best to see that they do.) Krauthammer said words to the effect that:

"The current Israeli leadership including the Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni are without genuin experience in their politically appointed tasks."

No thought was, in fact, given to their ability to fulfill their appointed attacks. Appointments were made according to political expediency and political pay back. JSK

Mr. Krauthammer registered genuine concern as to the Israeli government's understanding as to what is expected from them by the United States. For the very first time, the United States and Israel are fighting an unequivocally common enemy - Hezbollah. Israel is assisting immeasurably in this work and President Bush is giving them free rein to defeat this common enemy.

Israel, unfortunately and certainly understandably, has been extremely cautious in their attack - unwilling to commit large ground troops and obtain severe casualties, unwilling to take up large swaths of territory in what may well become a long term occupation in order to be truly effective in wiping out Hezbollah and terminating Syrian domination of Lebanon. Israel has been there, done that. JSK

Mr. Krauthammer went on to advise that the United States is watching closely. How effective are the Israelis? How much is their action helping the cause of the United States of America?

Is Israel worthy of American trust and intimate association and of President G W Bush sticking his neck way out on a limb both internationally and domestically? Can Israel be depended upon as a successful ally or a worrisome dependent?

Obviously the United States has given Israel full rein placing the ball squarely in Israel's court. And, in no way, unfortunately, are the decisions to be made by Israel easy. What is certain is that if Israel is not successful, the Arab world will be tremendously empowered, the Islamists further inflamed and emboldened and Israel will not have made any real progress in certifying its own very existence. All they will have done is live long enough to fight another day.

That day will be undoubtedly under another American administration and most likely nowhere near as supportive as President G.W. Bush. At that very near point, Israel will have had its military and political power advantages diminished exponentially as is occurring, at this moment, before our very eyes.

Of note, by the way, is what are America's options? Have we another ally who truly understands that the whole Western world is in the very same boat? How can the United States discard the only genuine ally they have in the entire Middle East? Maybe it's like a marriage - a whole lot of compromises have to be made.

Jerome S. Kaufman is National Secretary of the Zionist Organization of America. and host the Israel Commentary website (http://www.israel-commentary.org).

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Posted by Jeremy Gimpel and Ari Abramowitz, July 27, 2006.

Shalom from Jerusalem. These days in Israel are some of the darkest we remember. Eight of our fellow soldiers were killed and countless more were maimed and wounded. That means eight funerals and eight families who would most likely prefer death to the nightmare that is now their lives. We are being barraged by missiles from Hamas and Hezbollah and by lies from the UN and the EU. It feels as if the world is against us and the country is losing morale. ! Personally, we have been told to remain accessible by phone at all times to join the war if need be. Over the last few days, we have received many e-mails inquiring about our feelings, thoughts, and welfare and we have therefore decided to share them with all of you in this email.

Maimonides, one of our greatest philosopher sages, explained "At the time of war a man should not think of his wife, nor of his children, nor of his possessions, but he must free his heart of everything and set himself to battle. And more - he should think that the entire existence of Israel depends on him." There isn't one combat reservist in this country who has not thought that this war could be his end. When confronted with the possibility of losing ones life, introspection is inevitable. What am I losing my life for? Is it worth it?

Firstly, one must come to grips with what he believes is the purpose of life. Reflexively, most people insist that happiness is what it is all about, and proceed to dedicate their lives to achieving that end. Whichever route one takes however, sooner or later the conclusion is always the same - real happiness comes from real meaning. A life spent pursuing meaning is a life well lived.

The attainment of true love, all would attest, is among the most meaningful experiences one could ever achieve. Pirkei Avot, "Ethics of our fathers", provides valuable insight "Any love that is dependent on something - when the thing ceases, the love also ceases. But a love that is not dependent on anything never ceases." True Love means transcending the physical world of materialism and self-concern and giving of oneself without wanting, or expecting, anything in return.

For thousands of years the Jewish people have been praying three times a day "to Jerusalem, Your city, return us with mercy." In our happiest personal moments every Jew recites the poetry of King David at his wedding "If I forget thee, Oh Jerusalem, may my right arm lost its cunning. Let my tongue stick to my palate if I do not remember you, if I do not set Jerusalem above my greatest joy (Psalm 137)." It is for Jerusalem that we have prayed and for Israel that we have wept.

The reason for this undying love for Israel is because the only place that the Jewish people, as a nation, can transcend the physical and bring true peace and spirituality into the world is in this Land. Our Rabbi and greatest prophet, Moses, tells the Jews "Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments... that you should do in the midst of The Land which you go to possess." Our Torah and its commandments were given to us as the tools with which we are to use to fix the world, and only in the "midst" of the Land are we truly able to actualize their purpose.

Over five thousand Kassam Rockets have been fired from Gaza into Israel in the past year. The residents have been living in fear and fleeing for their lives. Along with the Jews of Gush Katif, we have turned the Jews of southern Israel into refugees and ignored their plight. Now the Jews of the north are refugees as well. Fleeing their homes and hiding underground, they now feel the pain that their brothers have endured for the past year. The message to Israel is that we, The Jewish People, are immediate family. Deuteronomy 14:13, "It will be that if you hearken to My commandments that I command you today, to love Hashem, your G-d, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, then I shall provide rain, that you may gather in your grain, your wine, and your oil." When the Nation of Israel is deserving, Hashem will bless us, as a people, with rain. When we are not deserving, the drought will affect us all. There is no distinction between the righteous in the Land and the wicked. If we are not worthy as a nation we will all suffer as a nation.

Our Rabbi's explained "We are similar to a group of people in a boat. One suddenly began to knock a hole in the boat. Said the others to him: What are you doing? He answered: What concern is it of yours; am I not knocking the hole under my side? They replied: but the water will rise and sink the entire boat." Maimonides writes "It is a commandment to love each and every one of Israel as himself." The more we resist the reality of our unity and fight to keep standing the synthetic barriers that separate us, the more trials and tribulations G-d will place for us to help us grasp this truth.

We stand in Jerusalem and hear tonight that three reserve battalions are to be called up and we do not yet know if we are among them. If our phones do ring and we are summoned, we will not be afraid but grateful. Grateful for the opportunity to show our love for the Jews of the north and the south, of America and the world. Fighting for The Land of Israel, the homeland of the Jewish People, is the ultimate testament of love and is therefore the highest level of meaning and happiness we could ever desire.

To all of our brothers and sisters in Israel and around the world, it is time to unite. We must stand for what is right with courage and moral clarity. We must understand that true peace is not acquired by ignoring evil but rather by overcoming it. We must recognize that our fates are intertwined and our pain is shared. When we stand united no enemy can touch us.

Or chadash al tzion tair, v'nizke culanu bimhera l'oro. Baruch ata Hashem yotzer Ha'meorot.

May You shine a new light on Zion, and may we all speedily merit it's Light. Blessed are You, Hashem, Creator of all Light.


To contact Ari and Jeremy please visit www.thelandofisrael.com

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Posted by Lee Caplan, July 27, 2006.
p>Pinchas Fuchs visited our community several months ago and gave a wonderful presentation on his beautiful community of Elon Moreh, and he is also a good friend of mine. Tizku lemitzvos.


Pinchas Fuchs wrote this:


Together with many other communities
Elon Moreh
has invited 10 families (50 people) from
to stay with us

Cost: $20 (100 ns) per person per day

We are asking friends and supporters
to help cover the tremendous expense.
Depending on support we can invite more.

can be made to:
BOX 5435

Contact Lee Caplan by email at leescaplan@yahoo.com

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Posted by Linda Sog, July 27, 2006.

To send a Hug, Click here.

Contact Linda Sog at linda@lindasog.com

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Posted by Avodah 15, July 27, 2006.

Notice: in this instance, the UN observer was injured badly enough to be evacuated to an Israeli hospital. Where they saved his life.

Hizballah Attacked UNIFIL Twice This Week

Neither the mainstream media nor Kofi Annan have mentioned it, but Hizballah has attacked UNIFIL observers twice this week. (Hat tip: Larry.)

From the UN's own press releases:

24 July 2006:

One unarmed UN military observer, a member of the Observer Group Lebanon (OGL), was seriously wounded by small arms fire in the patrol base in the Marun Al Ras area yesterday afternoon. According to preliminary reports, the fire originated from the Hezbollah side during an exchange with the IDF. He was evacuated by the UN to the Israeli side, from where he was taken by an IDF ambulance helicopter to a hospital in Haifa. He was operated on, and his condition is now reported as stable.

Notice: in this instance, the UN observer was injured badly enough to be evacuated to an Israeli hospital. Where they saved his life.

Not a word of condemnation from Kofi Annan for Hizballah. And not a word of gratitude for Israel, for saving a UN peacekeeper?s life.

25 July 2006:

This morning, Hezbollah opened small arms fire at a UNIFIL convoy consisting of two armored personnel carriers (APC) on the road between Kunin and Bint Jubayl. There was some damage to the APCs, but no casualties, and the convoy was obliged to return to Kunin.

Contact Avodah 15 by email at avodah15@aol.com

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Posted by Buddy Macy, July 27, 2006.

This was written by Richard A. Berg, Ph.D., whose area of expertise is in Military and Investigative Psychology. He lives in Moshav Neve Yamin, Israel. Contact him at Choil15@aol.com


The civilian politicians running our government here in Israel know nothing about warfare, strategy, tactics, realities. Olmert served in the IDF as a damn journalist. Peretz was a nothing.

We are losing a lot of Israeli troops because the politicians want to avoid "innocent civilian casualties" among the Lebanese. The army dropped thousands, no -- millions of leaflets on southern Lebanon telling the "innocent civilians" to get out -- there was going to be an attack. The army broadcast that same message, over and over again on Lebanese radio and television. They set up phone banks and called the "innocent civilians" on the phone and warned them to leave. They flew over with loud speakers and warned them to leave. They warned them with loudspeakers on trucks. They warned them again and again and again: LEAVE -- YOU ARE IN A DANGEROUS WAR ZONE!

Besides that, how much intelligence does it take to figure out that if you have a Hezbullah rocket launcher in your backyard, or your roof top has a Hezbullah sniper on it, or if your neighbor is storing a dozen missiles in his garage -- you are a target!! And, you should leave, NOW!!

But the politicians will not allow the IDF to properly prepare the battlespace with artillery and airpower before sending in our troops. And, they will not allow the IDF to call up the reserves that are needed to attack Hezbullah with adequate force and tactics. And, they will not allow troops under fire to be given adequate air and artillery support.


We need to tell the Israeli government: If it is in southern Lebanon now, it is the enemy. If it moves, kill it. If it is stationary, flatten it. If it shoots at IDF forces with a rifle, return fire with a battery of 155mm guns. If it is dug in, napalm it.




(Then we can "appologize for being bad." I, for one, have no intention of being the world's most highly moral corpse.)

Rule of warfare number one (since the dawn of human time):

The enemy must be attacked suddenly, mercilessly, unremittingly; with overwhelmingly dispropportionate force and violence; and, prosecuted until they and their supporters' ability and will to fight are completely crushed, and they surrender unconditionally.

Compromise this rule -- restrain the military -- and there will be no peace -- ever. And, in the end, we will perish.

Call, write, e-mail your U.S. government representatives, and Israeli government representatives -- tell them to unleash the IDF, to allow them to demolish Hezbullah for the sake of peace in the future

If you are not part of the solution; you are part of the problem.

Contact Buddy Macy at vegibud@aol.com

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Posted by N.F. Karkowsky, July 27, 2006.

[Editor's note: You can read Matthias Kuntzel's article below.

To: Matthias Kuntzel, Spiegel Online.

Thank you for your article, "Why Israel's Reaction is Right," at http://service.spiegel.de/cache/international/0,1518,428245,00.html.

As the adult child of a mother who lost most of her family but somehow survived the Nazi concentration camps, I truly believe that, as a British historian said, the only thing necessary for evil for triumph in the world is for enough "good" people to do nothing. I also regret that most Europeans, even Germans, have forgotten Pastor Niebuhr's compelling warning that if the civilized world does not rally to the support of Israel in this initial terrible battle against terror, there will be no one to save them when the murderers come after them.

You have made a cogent and compelling argument against the misplaced sympathies of your countrymen. I hope, for the sake of the civilized world, they read and understand your words.

Thank you.
NF Karkowsky, Esquire
POB 1612 Silver Spring, MD 20902

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Posted by Yoram Ettinger, July 27, 2006.

Enclosed you'll find the lucid words of Captain Uri Lavie, a company commander of the Golani Brigade, which is fighting Hizballah terrorists along Israeli's northern border.

May his words constitute the Pillar of Fire for Israel's leaders, and for western democracies, in their Third World War against Islamic terrorism.


Captain Uri Lavie, a company commander in the Golani Brigade briefing his soldiers -- nine months into their military service -- a few minutes before joining the battle against Hizballah terrorists in southern Lebanon (Ha'aretz, July 27, 2006):

"This is our time to rise to the challenge, put on the helmets and the bullet proof vests and make sure that the northern border is secure.

We shall fulfill any mission in a most effective manner, in face of any challenge.

If we shall not fulfill our mission we shall forfeit the right to exist.

We shall not lose this war, which we did not start.

Our duty is to serve as a defense force of the Jewish People, and to secure the peace of mind of the civilians in northern Israel.

If we shall not do it, no one will do it in our place.

For two thousand years we waited for the establishment of the Jewish State, and we are not going to roll back because a bunch of terrorists assume that they can scare us.

He who cannot defend Liberty does not deserve Liberty.

If we will not be able to fight until our last drop of blood, in order to secure the Liberty of our People on its own soil, our People will not enjoy Liberty.

There is time to talk and there is time to act. At this time, when missiles and Katyushas afflict the North all the way to Haifa, in addition to the two kidnapped soldiers, the ten soldiers killed and the dozens injured, it is time to fight and not to talk. We are the force, which has been chosen to fight, and we shall perform in the most effective manner.

I will be the first one to enter the battle and the last one to come out, and will do everything in my power to get you out alive and well. On Friday, with G-D's help, we will rejoin with our families. However, I cannot do it alone. Once we cross the northern border, you should exercise full alert and full responsibility toward your fellow soldier."

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

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 27, 2006.

We keep on hearing by the propaganda lying masters of the left saying that "we sacrifice our soldiers to defend you settlers" and other baloney like this.

Has anyone noticed that 3 of the 9 soldiers killed in combat yesterday, fighting with the special units of Golani in Lebanon, were RELIGIOUS SETTLERS, 2 from the Jewish village of Eli, in the Shomron - on Olmert's chop-block - and one from Bet Horon, near Jerusalem?...

Contact Sergio Tessa (HaDaR) at HaDaR-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by David Meir-Levi, July 27, 2006.

Dear Mr. Kristof,

I became a fan of yours when you began speaking out against the Arab Moslem Sudanese genocide of black African Christians and Animists in south Sudan, and against the Arab Janjaweed genocide against the Black African Moslems of Darfur. You were perspecatious enough to see the evil, and courageous enough to call that evil by its name.

You seem to have lost that perspicacity when it comes to the Arab-Israel conflict.

In your essays of 7/24/06 (Palo Alto Daily News, "Israel could learn restraint from Spain") and 7/26/06 (ibid, "Israel repeats our mistake"), you fall in to errors of fact, and you misunderstand the nature of the Israel-Arab conflict and its combatants.

A.) You discuss Hezbollah and Hamas as though these were your typical run-of-the-mill off-the-shelf belligerents, akin to those that Europe and the USA have experienced for centuries. They are not! They are religiously motivated genocidal terrorists.

B.) You discuss the conflict as though it were your typical run-of-the-mill off-the-shelf conflict such as Europe and the USA have experienced for centuries, both with regard to its dynamics and to its geo-political scope. It is not! It is a religiously motivated terrorist war whose short-term goal is genocide of Jews and whose long-term goal is the Islamofascist conquest of the West by Iran and el-Qaeda.

C.) You make recommendations as to what Israel and/or the USA or the UN or Lebanon or Hezbollah should do to achieve resolution, as though this conflict were amenable to the resolution methodologies that have been successful in countless conflicts elsewhere for centuries. It is not! This conflict's 70-year history demonstrates that concessions merely fuel the terrorist fervor.

Few recognize that this conflict is sui generis, in terms of its belligerents, its dynamics, its geo-political parameters, and its amenability to resolution.

Let's review these three misunderstandings.

A.) The nature of Hezbollah and Hamas

Unlike the belligerents in other wars, who fought over borders or resources, Hezbollah and Hamas are fighting Israel because they want to destroy the Jewish state and genocide its Jews. They are not fighting for land, or for independence, or for freedom or civil rights. They are fighting in order to destroy a sovereign state and genocide its inhabitants.

As Abbas Massawi (former Hezbollah leader) said: "We are not fighting you (Israel) because we want something from you. We are fighting you because we want to destroy you."

Similarly, Hassan Nasrallah (current Hezbollah leader) has been quoted in Arab newspapers: "It is good that most Jews are in Israel. That will make it easier for us to destroy them."

And Hamas leaders expressed no less of a commitment to the genocide of Jews. Sheikh Akhmed Yassin (former Hamas leader) spoke openly of his intent to destroy Israel "before the end of the first quarter of the 21st century."

And his late successor, Dr. Abdul Aziz Rantisi, raged that "...there is no place for a Jewish state in Moslem Lands. We will destroy Israel even if we must do it one Jew at a time."

And their deeds substantiate their words. Hezbollah and Hamas are both religious Islamic Jihadist genocidal terrorist paramilitary armies. They are terrorists in the fullest sense of the word. They target Israeli civilians for random killing, and rejoice in those murders even though such destruction offers no tactical or strategic advance. They are indifferent even to their own people's lives, as they intentionally and routinely use Arab civilian sites for their weapons and camps and ammunition storage. They are "teflon terrorists" in the sense that there is no institution or regimen by which they can be called to account: thus, for example, they can and do use UN camps and personnel as human shields.

B.) The Nature of the Conflict

1.) The dynamics of the conflict

This is an existential conflict. Victory for Hezbollah or Hamas means the destruction of Israel. Nothing less. Theirs is a war of genocide, to be waged eternally "...until victory or martyrdom." As such, theirs is a war that is not amenable to compromise or concessions made in the name of "advancing the peace process." In fact, there can be no peace process, because ultimately there can be no peace with Israel. In this war, a cease-fire is not a first step toward armistice, negotiations, reconciliation, and peace. Quite the opposite, a cease-fire is an opportunity to re-group, re-arm, re-load and re-deploy to be better prepared for the next round. Similarly, Israeli concessions have brought no movement toward cessation of hostilities, negotiations, or peace. When Israel has made concessions, the terrorists have simply pocketed the concessions and continued their terror war.

One can deduce this quite readily from the 70-year history of the Arab war against Israel. Since 1937 the UK, UN, USA and /or Israel have offered peaceful resolution no less than 15 times. But each offer has been met with rejection, violence, murder, terrorism and war. Israel has successfully traded land for peace with Egypt and Jordan, and offered to do the same with Syria and the Palestinian Authority. But concessions and offers of more concessions have not quelled Hamas or Hezbollah in their lust for Israel's destruction. For the most recent examples, note Israel's withdrawals from Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. Israel withdrew unilaterally and unconditionally from Lebanon in May, 2000. The UN declared that withdrawal to be complete, and thus Israel no longer occupied any Lebanese territory. That should have ended Hezbollah's 15-year terrorist war against Israel: a war which Hezbollah spokespersons averred was a sacred war to liberate Moslem territory from Israeli occupation. But Hezbollah continued its terror offensive. Using Israel's retention of the Sheba'a farms area as an excuse [despite the fact that the UN had officially declared that area to be a part of Syria which Israel conquered in 1967, and therefore in no way a part of Lebanese sovereignty], Hezbollah kidnapped, tortured and killed Israeli soldiers just a few months after the withdrawal. It then went on to randomly fire a variety of rockets in to Israeli civilian territory, periodically deploy armed gunmen to attack Israeli military and civilian emplacements, and attempted several more kidnappings -- unsuccessfully until July 12.

The same is true of the Gaza Strip. Israel withdrew unilaterally and unconditionally from the Gaza Strip in August, 2005. Instead of a cessation of hostilities, Hamas declared a victory for terrorism, promised more terror, and initiated a series of intense Qassam and mortar bombardments into Israeli civilian communities, firing more than 1,250 rockets in the months since the Israeli withdrawal, killing nearly a dozen Israelis and injuring hundreds. And during that time Hamas (or any of its dozen or so kindred terror gangs operating with its approval) launched dozens of drive-by shootings, road-side bombs, car bombs, sniper attacks, attempted kidnappings, and almost a dozen suicide bombers (only one of whom was successful).

2. The Scope of the Conflict

a.) Time There is no time constraint for this conflict. The conflict began in earnest in 1922. As leaders of both terror armies have said, the conflict may go on for decades or even centuries. Preparations for a decades-long conflict are already in place, as Hezbollah and Hamas and the Palestinian Authority teach children from pre-school onward that they must hate Jews, hate Israelis, hate Israel, and hate the West. Arab children are taught that suicide bombers are roll models, and death guarantees an eternity of sexual bliss as long as you take a Jew with you when you go. "We buy paradise with Jewish blood" is a kindergarten song. "We knock on heaven's door with the skulls of Jews" is an oft-heard chant.

And Hamas' covenant incorporates into the terrorists' long-range plan the ancient post-Qur'anic apocalyptic teaching that the world will enjoy redemption, and the dead will resurrect, only when Moslems have killed all the world's Jews. Only by finishing what Hitler began can the Moslem world enjoy its end-of-days scenario when all the world will worship only Allah.

Hezbollah and Hamas have, literally, all the time in the world.

b.) Geo-Political Space

Israel is at war with far more than just Hezbollah and Hamas. And more countries than Israel are at war with these terrorist forces. The involvement of Iran and el-Qaeda raise this to the level of a truly global conflict.

The Middle Eastern theatre of operations is merely a starting point. Both Hezbollah and Hamas are allied with Iran; and Iran manages Hezbollah through its proxy, Syria. As such, Israel is merely one of a number of Western targets. As Iran's president has unabashedly declared, Israel is to be obliterated in a nuclear holocaust, and the USA is to be destroyed as well (although he did not specify the mechanism). Iran is allied with el-Qaeda; and as Osama has said often in his television speeches, his enemy, first and foremost, is "global non-belief." Global non-belief means us: you and me and all the non-Moslems of the world, and even those Moslems who are not quite Moslem enough, per Osama's definition.

As Iran's terror army in Lebanon, Hezbollah is carrying out Iranian terrorist intentions. And, indeed, hundreds of Iranian Revolutionary Guard agents are in Lebanon working with Hezbollah. Very suspiciously, approximately 60,000 Iranian "tourists" have made their way to Lebanon over the past few years, and have disappeared into the variegated fabric of Lebanese society. Iran's growing military force in Lebanon is waging war against Israel by supporting and re-enforcing Hezbollah, and Iranian Revolutionary Guard members have been killed in fire fights with the Israeli army.

Iran is also "testing the waters" to see how the West, and especially the USA, will react to what is essentially a de facto declaration of war. Iranian troops in Lebanon, warring against an ally of the USA, is tantamount to Iran warring against the USA. That, combined with President Mahmoud Akhmedi-Nejad's openly avowed intent to use WMDs against an American ally and to wage war against the USA, is as clear a declaration of war as ever there was.

And just in case someone thinks that Iran is only kidding (you know, just Moslem rhetoric about WMDs ), note the recent article in The Sunday Times (UK), by former Conservative MP Michael Portillo, who told his British countrymen that, their hostility for Israel and the USA aside, "The bloody truth is that Israel's war is our war." Portillo went on to argue that given the threat that Iran and Hezbollah pose to Britain itself, "for us to turn against Israel and America would be perverse and potentially suicidal."

Strengthening the view that opposition to war against Iran and its proxies is suicidal, it was reported Sunday (UK Daily Mail) that Bulgarian border guards along their border with Romania had intercepted a British truck filled with radioactive materials for building a so-called dirty bomb. The components, which included dangerous quantities of radioactive caesium 137 and americium-beryllium, were stored in 10 lead-lined boxes addressed to the Iranian Ministry of Defense.

According to the Daily Mail, this was the second time in less than a year that a British shipment of nuclear materials had been stopped by Bulgarian border guards. Last August, Bulgaria stopped a shipment of zirconium silicate, which can be used as a component of a nuclear warhead, at its border with Turkey en route to Iran.

Moreover, Akhmedi-Nejad made clear his intentions to his Moslem allies as well. The opening paragraph of his recent letter to President Bush invites the President to lead the western world in to mass conversion to Islam. To western minds, this is a drole Moslem fantasy. In Islamic history, this is the religiously required offer prior to invasion: "Convert, or we make war upon you until you are Moslem or dead." That was the way that Mohammed did it with the Byzantine and Sassanian empires. The offer of conversion must precede hostilities. If that offer is rejected, then Jihad is justified. Akhmedi-Nejad has made the requisite offer. Bush's disregard for the offer now legitimizes, in Islamic religious tradition, a Moslem invasion of the USA or against USA forces or allies.

El-Qaeda has set up terror cells in the Gaza Strip, and with Israel's pullout in 2005, these cells operate openly and unimpeded. Gaza's open border with Egypt (for which we must thank Condoleeza Rice) gives those el-Qaeda operatives easy contact with the four el-Qaeda bases recently established in the southern Sinai (much to the consternation of Egypt, which lacks the military ability to attack and shut down these bases). Hamas' allegiance with el-Qaeda brings it into the circle of enmity that predicates Osama's attacks against the USA and other Western targets.

In a message broadcast by al-Jazeera recently, Ayman az-Zawahiri said that al-Qaeda views "all the world as a battlefield ... and that the fighting between Israel and Hezbollah will ... not be ended with cease-fires or agreements...It is a Jihad for the sake of Allah and will last until our religion prevails from Spain to Iraq."

It is important to recall, at this point, that both Hezbollah and Hamas are the USA's avowed enemies in their own right.

  • 1982: Muslim extremists (mostly Hezbollah) began a nearly decade-long habit of taking Americans and Europeans hostage in Lebanon, kidnapping William Buckley (CIA station chief in Lebanon) and torturing him for more than a year and finally killing him after they had extracted enough information from him such that the USA was forced to shut down most of its operations in the Middle East. They also kidnapped Terry Anderson and held him for six and a half years.

  • April 1983: Hezbollah bombed the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, killing 16 Americans.

  • October 1983: Hezbollah blew up the U.S. Marine barracks at the Beirut airport, killing 241 Marines, and wounding hundreds more; even though the Marines had been sent to Lebanon as a peace-keeping force, to assist the PLO as it relocated to Tunisia

  • December 1983: Muslim extremists (ad-Da'wa -- related to Hezbollah) blew up the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait, killing five and injuring 80.

  • September 1984: Hezbollah exploded a truck bomb at the U.S. Embassy annex in Beirut, killing 24 people, including two U.S. servicemen.

  • December 1984: Hezbollah hijacked a Kuwait Airways airplane, landed in Iran and demanded the release of the 17 members of ad-Da'wa who had been arrested for the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait, killing two Americans before the siege was over.

  • June 14, 1985: Hezbollah hijacked TWA Flight 847 out of Athens, diverting it to Beirut, taking the passengers hostage in return for the release of the Kuwait 17 as well as another 700 prisoners held by Israel. When their demands were not met, the Muslims shot U.S. Navy diver Robert Dean Stethem and dumped his body on the tarmac.

  • December 1988: Muslim extremists (backed by Libya) bombed Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 on board and 11 on the ground.

    Then came an amazing, historic pause in Muslim extremists' relentless war on America after Ronald Reagan won the Cold War, depriving Islamic terrorists of their Soviet sponsors.

  • February 1993: Muslim extremists (al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, possibly with involvement of friendly rival al-Qaida) set off a bomb in the basement of the World Trade Center, killing six and wounding more than 1,000.

  • Spring 1993: Muslim extremists (al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, the Sudanese Islamic Front and at least one member of Hamas) plot to blow up the Lincoln and Holland tunnels, the U.N. complex and the FBI's lower Manhattan headquarters.

  • November 1995: Iranian Hezbollah explode a car bomb at U.S. military headquarters in Saudi Arabia, killing five U.S. military servicemen.

    In more recent years, Hassan Nasrallah has publicly enjoined Arabs to carry suicide bombings to the West, and especially to America.

    Hamas operatives killed American embassy personnel in Gaza in 2003, while they were on a mission of good will to give Fulbright fellowships to Arab students.

In sum, this is not a regional war between Israel and some terrorists. This is a new front in the Islamofascist war against Western Civilization's "non-belief" that Iran and much of the Arab world have been waging since November 4, 1979.

C. Inappropriate recommendations

It is obvious from the above, that this conflict is sui generis.

Israel, the UK, the UN, and the USA have tried every imaginable approach to a negotiated resolution. Peace offers, offers of statehood and independence, invitations to negotiations, negotiations with terrorist leaders even as they launch terror attacks, accepting partition, ceding territory, good will gestures, releases of prisoners, third party super power intervention, aid to Moslem states, repeated concessions, even Israel's acquiescence to the Arab demand that the Arabs' desired end of the negotiation process must be guaranteed at the beginning (a very non-western concept of negotiation), and even unilateral concessions with no strings attached... all these western ways of resolving conflict have drawn only derision from the Arab terrorists, and more terrorism.

Nusrallah has no need, nor desire, for negotiations, concessions, or good will gestures. Hezbollah does not seek a cease-fire, and has no interest in diplomacy except where it can use that diplomacy to counter Israel's military victories. Their goal is destruction and genocide. Tthe terrorists have plenty of time; and thanks to Iran and Saudi Arabia, plenty of money.

So what works?

The nature of the conflict, and the fanatic religious genocidal commitments of its terrorist belligerents to a vision of apocalyptic world domination, all demonstrate that the only way that this conflict can end with western civilization intact is for Israel's terrorist enemies to be brought to their knees, reduced to acquiescing to unconditional surrender -- just as were Germany and Japan in World War 2. Victory must not be anything less than the destruction of Hezbollah and Hamas, the death or incarceration of their leaders, total disarmament, dispersal of all rank-and-file, and rendering both groups illegal as institutions, with laws against their hate-speech and hate-teach -- just as was done to the Nazis.

Anything less is defeat... defeat for Israel and for Western Civilization in our defensive war against el-Qaeda and the forces of Islamic terrorist triumphalism.

Victory for Hezbollah in the current Lebanon war is tantamount to a victory for Iran and el-Qaeda over the forces of western "non-belief"; a giant step forward in the Islamofascist supremacist triumphalist terror war for Islam uber alles.

David Meir-Levi is an American-born Israeli, currently living in Palo Alto. His expertise is in Near Eastern studies and the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. He is Director of Peace and Education at Israel Peace Initiative (www.ipi-usa.org). Contact him at david_meirlevi@hotmail.com

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Posted by Jock L. Falkson, July 27, 2006.

Ben Gurion

In his article "The causes of war: Hizbullah's and Hamas's grievances" (Jerusalem Post 25 July 2006) Alexander Wright quotes Ben-Gurion as having said that "any attack against Israel will be met with disproportionate retribution."

Wright* adds that "While the casualties of this war are heart-wrenching, since when is war supposed to be proportionate? When a state is attacked, would it make sense to strike back with an equal amount of force, and give your enemy space and time to fight back? What war has not produced innocent casualties?" (*Research Associate with the Centre for International Political Studies.)


Germany's initial successes in WW2 were undoubtedly produced by disproportionate attacks. Montgomery's attack on Rommel at Alamein fell into this category. So did Eisenhower's "Operation Overlord".

Israel conquered Egypt, Syria and Jordan by its surprise attack in 1967. Sadat almost won the Yom Kippur War this way -- he misunderstood Israel's resilience and was taken by surprise by Sharon's unexpected maneuver.

Kofi Annan

Kofi Annan and the other armchair proponents of proportionality never commanded a victorious army. All they are doing is repeating the most recent slogan of the Palestinians who are at their PR best when portraying themselves as victims.

Shock And Awe

Based on the result of wars in the last 50 years one thing is plain: if you want to win a war you should attack by surprise (if possible) but certainly with overwhelming force. That the US still believes this is manifest from its attack on Iraq in the "Shock and Awe" operation.


In a criticism of the Powell Doctrine (April 20, 2001) eminent columnist Charles Krauthammer writes: "If you respond proportionately, you allow the enemy to set the parameters and level of the fighting. You grant him the initiative. In Vietnam, proportionality brought us endless losses and painful retreat."


In an internet letter July 24, one Peter Simpson admonishes Sky News for accepting Hezbollah's figures of civilian casualties. He writes:

"It is pure conjecture to assume that virtually all are real civilians caught up in this conflict or whether most are not in reality Hizbollah fighters/ supporters including those who allow their homes and thus their wives and children's lives to be put at risk through housing/hiding rockets and the like."

Friendly Fire

In fact Hezbollah have not published their casualty figures unlike Israel which does so daily. Moreover Israel makes military mistakes too as does any army engaged in a vicious war. Why the world does not accept Israel's mistakes is puzzling. Haven't we, sadly and unfortunately, killed enough of our own soldiers by friendly fire?

Where's The Benefit?

Especially tragic and unfortunate are the deaths of the four UN personnel. I have previously made the point that military actions are taken to produce benefits. Kofi Annan's hasty judgment in this light is certainly wrong - unless he believes Israel deliberately courted the world's displeasure. For there was neither any military nor PR benefit.

If Israel did not make a mistake as Annan prefers to believe, would he kindly explain the nature of Israel's benefit?

Well of course he can't. Neither can anyone else. Not even the Palestinians can seriously suggest that Israel is so stupid. That we would go to so much trouble just to shoot ourselves in the foot every now and again. (Indeed both feet.) Because apparently, we have an unexplained need to motivate the majority in the United Nations to hate us all the more.

Missiles And Civilians

Civilian casualties are indeed deplorable. So let us then remember that Hamas and Hezbollah have already shot over 2,000 rockets plus uncounted numbers of mortars into Israel's towns and cities specifically intended to kill and wound Israel's civilians. We do not complain that they have not given us prior notice to save ourselves, as Israel has done.

We don't expect decent conduct from terrorists.

To be put on Jock Falkson's email list, contact him at falkson@barak-online.net

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Posted by Rabbi Yaakov Palatnik, July 27, 2006.

The worst thing the Jewish People could do, the one thing that would make us vulnerable to our enemies was ...

Twice in our history, our enemies have destroyed Jerusalem and the holy Temple that stood near where the Western Wall is today. Ancient Babylonia and, later, the Roman Empire came and brought their destruction upon the Jewish Nation.

"Was there a spiritual blemish, a lack of greatness in the Jewish Nation, that could have led to these events"? asked the sages of long ago. They answered that the Jewish People indeed did have a spiritual blemish that allowed those events to happen.

What was it? Shabbat? Kosher laws? Not going to shul or praying? No, they said, it wasn't any of that.

Senseless hatred among the Jewish People was the source of those events, said the sages. Senseless hatred between members of the Jewish people.

Senseless hatred means hating someone because they are not perfect, make mistakes or show lack of character. They never did anything particularly to us, but we see their mistakes with all the power of an electron microscope.

Those of you who have older children love them to pieces for sure. Do you also see their mistakes? You probably do, in Technicolor. But you love them anyway. It's harder to do that with other family members, people we work with, members of our community.

We can see another's mistakes. We can't give up our faculty of judgement on moral matters. But we can judge the action, not the person. The action may be wrong, but it doesn't in any way mean we are better people than those making the mistake. We should try to love others in spite of their mistakes, as people often do for their children. This love is part of the "spiritual armour" of our people.

For more on Tisha B'Va (the Ninth of Av) and the Nine Days, visit www.aish.com.

A Viewing Suggestion

I know we are all focused on events in Israel. I recommend Hannity and Colmes on Fox News Channel at 9 tonight (Thursday, July 27). I make no comment on the politics of the show, but the hosts will be examining the new movie Obsession on the Islamic battle to fight Western and Jewish values. I personally know the movie maker and 100 percent recommend that you learn for yourself about this remarkable film.

Shabbat Shalom. Good Shabbos.

Contact Rabbi Palatnik by email at ypalatnik@aish.com

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Posted by Professor Eugene Narrett, July 26, 2006.

The entirety of this essay will be posted on www.israelendtimes.com on July 26; please visit and consider the breadth of the threat to the Jewish people.

The Global State & Islam, Synergy of Interests, Means and Goals

The battles in Lebanon between the Islamic "army of Allah" (Hizbollah) and the armed forces of Israel (IDF) reveal distinctive historical, geopolitical, and ideological features about the drive toward a global state.

For one, the latest in a series of mostly secular -- socialist governments of Israel is fighting a proxy war against the interests of the Jewish people, the people for whom the state was meant to serve as a sovereign source of identity and protection. It imperils rather than protects their interests because it is not a war but a bloody and utterly inadequate police action, part of an ongoing war of attrition that the ruling echelons, civilian and military, do not intend to win.

Unless there is a fundamental change in the ruling cadres of their state, the people of Israel will have to get used to living in or near bomb shelters, and with the imminent threat of extinction via nuclear, biological or chemical weapons attack based in Lebanon, Syria or Iran.

Israel is fighting this proxy war against Hizbollah, part of the government of Lebanon which has become, with its Shiite Muslim majority a de facto part of Iran in its drive to dominate not only the Middle East but the Islamic world. But Israel is fighting not only on behalf of the United States and Europe, the Europe that never tires of harming Israel via its media, economic boycotts and military aid to jihadist states; Israel also is fighting on behalf of the Anglo-American protectorates of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and now Iraq, assuming America can pull Iraq from the Shiite into the Sunni Muslim and pseudo-western camp.

It is a bitter irony for the Jewish people ....

the Global State and Islam, Synergies

The powers of the world have awakened jihad to facilitate their imposition of the Age of Aquarius, a world of forgetting, sensory rapture, chronic terror and promises of security in order to create "a world that is free... free of Jews" (Hannah Newman, the Rainbow Swastika).

Israel and the Jews are to be crippled, not utterly destroyed if the powers play their hands perfectly. Why do they not want to utterly destroy Israel yet? Because both power-blocks need Israel as a catalyst of Islamic rage and the crises that ensue (and must be managed by various diplomatic and economic processes); they need Israeli medical, communications, military and security technologies and skills. And they need superbly trained and brave Israeli soldiers to bleed for them in the eternal end game...

Israel will continue to sacrifice its people to serve the interests of the power-blocks that war on it so long as it has client regimes and dominant classes that dislike or reject Judaism. The support of the Olmert administration by most power-blocks (even by fiercely anti-Israel Islamic states like the House of Saud) indicates how sure they are of its commitment to the further expulsion of Jews and constriction of Israel. Indeed, on July 26 Olmert announced his intention to continue expelling Jews from their land.

The interlocking parts of the competing blocks, their divergent self-interests, their intense and irrational hatred of Jews, and also the spark of self-respect and self-preservation in the Jews of Israel all are wildcards that may overturn this intrinsically unstable game of crisis creation and management. The overturning may be apocalyptic in scope. It will come -- the only question is how soon.

Professor Eugene Narrett teaches writing and Literature at Boston University. He is the author of hundreds of articles, columns and reviews on politics, American culture and the arts. He is completing a study on Romanticism and the longterm decline of Western Culture. He writes often on subjects relating to Israel and Judaism and is a weekly columnist for the MetroWest Daily News in Framingham, Massachusetts. His new book is "Israel and the Endtimes". Contact him at Culturtalk@aol.com

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Posted by Yuval Zaliouk, July 26, 2006.

Dear friends,

Even the liberal-left Haaretz newspaper sees the light on the subject. The editorial is entitled "Only after a clear success." It is archived at
www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/ PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=743210

Bravo, Haaretz! This time you got it! Took some time, but finally you got it...

The number of Israelis who have died thus far in the fighting in Lebanon and on the home front rose yesterday, following a bitter battle at Bint Jbail, and now stands at over 50. This harsh fact sharpens doubts about the wisdom with which this campaign is being run -- a different issue than its purpose and justice. It is joined by an incident in which four United Nations observers in southern Lebanon were killed by an accidental Israel Defense Forces strike. Most of the peacekeeping burden in southern Lebanon is carried by UNIFIL. The very real danger to UN Blue Helmets may reduce countries' willingness to contribute units to a force that the United States is trying to set up in Lebanon as part of a new security arrangement.

In the 28 years since its establishment, UNIFIL failed to achieve its mission of implementing Security Council Resolution 425 and contributing to the restoration of security and order along the border. Instead of serving as a buffer between the PLO, and later Hezbollah, and Israel, it was a loose sieve that offered immunity to the planners of attacks. Therefore, the American effort to establish a new multinational force instead of the weak UNIFIL is justified, as is the approach of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who is working toward a stable cease-fire -- in other words, a cease-fire after Hezbollah is weakened.

A premature cease-fire means a cessation of fire between salvos, and not an end to it. Hezbollah's leadership will be able to claim victory, arguing that it issued a call for a cease-fire immediately after it abducted two IDF soldiers, but that after two weeks of exchanging blows, their demand for negotiations were finally accepted. They will recoup their losses, with the generous support of their financiers in Tehran, and at a convenient moment, renew the fire.

A serious blow to Hezbollah -- in order to bolster the political establishment in Lebanon, which objects to being held hostage by agents of Iran and Syria -- is essential in order to fashion a security arrangement, which will also be based on the multinational force. In order to deliver such a blow, the IDF must act faster, with greater force, in order to significantly lower -- to as close to zero as possible -- the number of Katyushas fired against Israel.

The exclusive focus on the nearest ridge, with Bint Jbail at its center, will not bring about the desired results. If the rocket launchers that strike Haifa are further to the north, in the area of Tyre, control of Bint Jbail will not contribute to their destruction.

The army's fighting ranks are characterized by determination and even enthusiasm, but the higher command ranks and the politicians look as if they have been frozen in a huge ice cube -- the trauma of the Lebanon War. The concern that they may be repeating that unfortunate adventure is paralyzing their steps to such an extent that they are themselves creating a new trauma, that of a home front helplessly being hit by Katyushas.

Israel cannot allow itself to be drawn into a war of attrition, with mounting casualties both on the front and in the rear, that will end in a weak whisper of a draw -- which is effectively a victory for Hezbollah. The public in Israel understands very well what Rice also understands: a hasty end to the military operations, without any gains, will result in a renewal of the fighting in a few weeks.

Yuval Zaliouk writes the Truth Provider columns. To subscribe, send an email to ynz@netvision.net.il

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Posted by Salah Choudhury, July 26, 2006.

I received a phone call on 25th July 2006 from Mr. Mamun, Administrative manager of AVENTIS Pharmaceuticals in Bangladesh.

Our Commercial Section had been sending copies of Blitz on complimentary basis to hundreds of potential advertisers since the launching of this newspaper. For the first time, this gentleman from AVENTIS called our office and looked for me. He told me that their company is not willing to receive copies of Blitz on complimentary basis as "this is a Zionist newspaper promoting ideas against Islam". I was completely surprised to see such reaction from a person, who works with a multi-national company. I told him, if they are affraid of the copies of Weekly Blitz, they should know for sure, most of the technology and formulas used by Aventis had also been invented by Jewish researchers. In this case, if they hate to read Blitz, why don't they close down their business, which runs with the formulas of our Jewish brothers and sisters. He replied, Blitz promotes some ideas, which he feels would seriously hamper the religious beliefs of the people in his company.

So, anyway, this is one example where the companies are not only refraining from advertising in Blitz, they even do not wish to see the copies of this newspaper. To them, Blitz itself is a 'horror'.

But, we have great news too. Every day, number of our readers are increasing. People are sending write ups from different countries for publication. Above all, Blitz is gradually becoming one of the most influential newspapers in Bangladesh.

The writer is a journalist, columnist, author, and editor of "Weekly Blitz" in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Email him at salahuddinshoaibchoudhury@yahoo.com

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Posted by Shaul Ceder, July 26, 2006.

This was written by Michael Medved, an American nationally syndicated conservative radio talk show host, film critic and author. It appeared on the TownHall website:
(www.townhall.com/columnists/MichaelMedved/ 2006/07/26/does_israel_have_a_right_to_exist_does_the_us).

It should come as no surprise that some of the same angry leftists who stridently deny Israel's "right to exist" similarly challenge the claims to nationhood of the United States of America.

After all, the two allied and embattled democracies achieved independence in the same way -- the patient settlement of largely desolate and under-populated land, the building of a new civilization virtually from scratch, and a long, bloody fight against determined, sometimes implacable opposition.

In fact, Israel boasts a far stronger "right to exist" than does its American counterpart (or many other nations) because of its ancient claim to the disputed land, and long-standing endorsement by international organizations.

In order to place these realities in proper perspective, it's first necessary to reject some thirty years of wildly irresponsible anti-Israel propaganda. First of all, it's not true in any sense that the modern Jewish State ever supplanted or destroyed an existing nation of "Palestine." From the time of definitive destruction of the ancient Jewish commonwealth in 70 A.D., the land that comprises the current State of Israel never enjoyed independent existence but, rather, passed back and forth among competing world empires -- Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Crusader, Mamaluke, Ottoman and British. Over the course of more than 1,800 years, no nation with the name "Palestine" appeared on any maps, anywhere. The distinguished Arab-American historian Philip Hitti, professor at Princeton University, testified to the Anglo American Committee in 1946: 'There is no such thing as 'Palestine' in history, absolutely not."

Mark Twain visited the Holy Land in 1867, shortly before the commencement of modern Jewish resettlement, and described it as "a desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds -- a silent, mournful expanse" A desolation is here that not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life and action." According to the careful population figures of the Ottoman Empire, in 1882 (at the very beginning of the modern, organized Jewish immigration back to the ancestral home), the total population of land between the Jordan and the Sea was less than 250,000 -- in an area that today supports ten million people, Israelis and Palestinians.

The resettlement of the sparsely populated Holy Land by the descendants of its ancient inhabitants, however, did not take place solely in the modern era. Throughout Jewish history, waves of returnees came back to the sacred soil of their ancestors. In the 8th and 9th centuries, A.D., Jewish immigrants re-established major communities in Jerusalem and Tiberias; by the 11th Century, they had built new communities in Jaffa, Ashkelon, Caesarea and Rafah. In the 16th Century, more Jewish immigrants developed the famous center of mysticism in Safed and beginning in the 1700's religious scholars and pilgrims intensely repopulated Jerusalem.

The Jewish connection to Israel, in other words, remained impassioned and unbroken for some three thousand years, while the British connection with North American began only in 1607 (with Jamestown) and 1620 (with the Pilgrims at Plymouth). No European settlers to the New World claimed an ancient connection to the land they discovered, developed, and gradually populated. Moreover, the Native Americans who preceded them came to the Western Hemisphere across the land bridge from Asia at the very latest some 13,000 years before the White Men arrived, while the Arabs appeared in Israel for the first time in the 7th Century.

If opponents of the modern Jewish State argue that Israelis have no meaningful claim on the land they occupy then on what basis do today's Americans have a stake in the vast continent once inhabited by millions of members of hundreds of Indian tribes?

Moreover, the Jewish title to the land of Israel received long-standing recognition from international organizations that didn't even exist at the time of American independence. On July 24, 1922, the 52 governments of the League of Nations formally recognized and endorsed the British Balfour Declaration calling for "reconstituting... a national home for the Jewish people" in the land with which that people enjoyed "historical connections." Twenty-five years later, the United Nations (successor body to the League of Nations) validated this title with the partition plan, dividing the British Mandate in the area into two states -- one Jewish, one Arab. The Arab leadership violently rejected that solution, but after Israel's bloody war for Independence the UN recognized Israel as a full member state in 1949.

Unlike Israel, the United States won no international recognition prior to the commencement of our own war for Independence; we only won that acknowledgment after the courage and sacrifice of the patriots who waged our Revolutionary struggle. In the end, an estimated 25,000 Americans died in the war -- nearly 1% of the Colonial population at the time. In a haunting similarity, Israel lost 6,373 fighters in its War of Independence -- nearly 1% of the Jewish population of nation at the time. In the case of the American struggle, final victory only became possible through the direct intervention of France, and the participation (at the climactic battle of Yorktown) of a French fleet and army of some 20,000. In the case of Israel, foreign assistance remained strictly limited (the US imposed an arms embargo on Israel and the rest of the Middle East in 1947) and no foreign armies of any kind ever fought alongside the beleaguered Israelis.

In other words, the founders of the modern Jewish State built their nation on the same basis as the founders of the United States -- with generations of building, toil, business development, land reclamation, settlement, and sacrifice in battle. Tel Aviv -- by far the largest city in today's Israel, and the nation's financial center -- was founded in 1909 and built from nothing, mostly on reclaimed sand dunes. In Jerusalem, Israel's capital and second largest city, some two-thirds of the population lives in new neighborhoods built on empty land after Jewish immigrants began moving outside the Old City walls in the nineteenth century. Apparently, those who make the idiotic (but occasionally well-meaning) suggestion that the Jews of Israel should save the world some trouble and relocate in Florida, or Australia, or the moon, remain unaware of this history. The idea that literally millions of people would uproot their homes -- along with their businesses, parks, universities, museums, freeways and so forth -- makes no more sense than expecting residents of New York or Los Angeles to dismantle and abandon the cities that they (and their ancestors) built.

Of course, those who suggest that Israelis should simply move their country somewhere else don't always mean well -- as evidenced by Iran's demented president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. His mad obsession with transplanting all Jews from the Middle East to Europe (he recently wrote a public letter to the Chancellor of Germany with that plan in mind) reflects one of the most pernicious big lies of Islamist propaganda: the contention that Israel was an alien intrusion "imposed" on the Palestinian people to compensate Jews for the Holocaust (which may never have happened anyway). Of course, this argument ignores the fact that the League of Nations endorsed the idea of a Jewish State in 1922 -- 11 years before Hitler even came to power! It also provides no explanation for the fact that the British Empire, which supposedly sponsored Israel as a refuge for allegedly persecuted Jews, actually blocked and outlawed settlement in the Middle East of all Jewish refugees from Nazi persecution both during the Holocaust years, and in the period immediately following the war. Most important of all, more than 700,000 Jews arrived in Israel as refugees from Islamic countries of North Africa and the Middle East and outnumbered all immigrants fleeing Hitlerism by a ratio of more than two to one. Ironically, one of these "Oriental Jews" who fled to the Jewish State from the Near East is the current President of Israel, Moshe Katzav -- who was born in Ahmadinejad's Iran, not Germany or Poland. Just as the population of the United States is made up of people whose forebears came from every corner of the globe -- from Africa and Asia and Latin America as well as Europe -- so too Israel has been populated by immigrants of all imaginable shades of skin color, from more than 80 nations (including a major recent influx from Ethiopia) on six continents. In neither case does the slogan "Go Back to Europe Where You Came From" make even the most superficial sort of sense.

For those who instinctively resist any comparison of Israel's "right to exist" with that of the United States, the crucial difference must be one of longevity: America has now enjoyed 230 years of prosperous independence, while Israel has yet to reach its sixtieth birthday. Yet other nations (Slovakia? Turkmenistan? Namibia?) have come into being far more recently than Israel, without endless public challenges to their legitimacy. Montenegro, for instance, just joined the family of nations a few months ago -- despite the fact that more that 45% of the citizens of the new country voted against its independence.

So if the long-standing, successful functioning of the American Republic provides the main basis for greater acceptance of our national existence, it might be more useful to analogize Israel today and the United States some 60 years after our own beginnings -- say, in the year 1836, at the height of the Jacksonian Era, when the admiring French visitor Alexis de Tocqueville toured the young Republic in eloquent amazement. Had America earned a "right to exist" by 1836? Countless Indian wars to secure the lands of the Great Plains and the West still lay in our nation's future, as did a spectacularly successful war against Mexico which brought about a vast expansion of American territory (into Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California and more)--- sort of the U.S. equivalent of Israel's Six Day War of 1967.

Except for the fact that Israel has already given back most of the land it gained in that conflict -- returning all of Sinai and Gaza to Arab adversaries, with the current Israeli government committed to still further (and very significant) concessions in the West Bank. These compromises (and potential compromises) reflect a fact that nearly all Jews understand, but that most Americans want to deny: that history is frequently, even generally, unfair. Whatever Israel's claims to legitimacy -- no matter how ancient the connection with the land, or how definitive the recognition by international law and putative world governments -- the nation exists only because of the ability and willingness of its people (past, present and future) to defend it against ruthless enemies. By the same token, it might be pleasant to assume that America remains secure and safe because a grateful world appreciates what our nation has done to introduce the concept of liberty to peoples around the world, or to save humanity from Hitlerism, Stalinism and now, Islamo-Nazism. But with unreasoning, fanatical anti-Americanism on the rise nearly everywhere, more citizens have come to realize that we survive on the same basis Israel survives: through determination, through strength of character and (not least) through military power.

Like Israel, the United States isn't a nation that grew up organically in one small corner of the earth, combining people who already spoke the same language and looked the same and shared common cultures. Both nations drew a dazzling array of dreamers and visionaries and crazies from around the world who made the choice to embrace the values and plans of the pioneers ("Halutzim," in Hebrew). Of course, these national origins (involving acts of will, rather than accidents of birth) mean that Israel and America can't ever be as perfect, and blameless, and pure in our turbulent histories as, say, our old world counterparts like France, say, or Spain, or Belgium. But as long as people in Tulsa and Tel Aviv, Jefferson City and Jerusalem, remain ready to sacrifice and even die for the still stirring visions of the founders, the two dynamic Republics will continue to exist -- regardless of the world's acceptance of their "right" to do so.

Contact Shaul Ceder at shaul.ceder@gmail.com

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Posted by Shaul Ceder, July 26, 2006.

This was written by William Bennett and Seth Leibsohn. William Bennett is the Washington fellow of the Claremont Institute, the author of America: The Last Best Hope, and the host of Bill Bennett's Morning in America. Seth Leibsohn is a fellow of the Claremont Institute and the producer of Bill Bennett's Morning in America. Originally this appeared at National Review Online.

From the precincts of the European Union to the United Nations to the editorial pages in the United States, it is being argued that Israel's response to Hezbollah's kidnapping of Israelis and firing of rockets into Israel is "disproportionate," a threat to the region, and could undo the U.S. democracy project in the Middle East. What is disproportion in the Middle East? How should one state respond to multi-state-sponsored terror?

Begin with the fundamentals. Hezbollah, once described as "the A-team of terrorists" by former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, is a terrorist group with a record of killing hundreds of Americans and Israelis (from Beirut to Saudi Arabia to Argentina to inside Israel). Hezbollah is of global reach and extent. It began with the fundamental goals of creating an Islamist state in Lebanon and the total annihilation of Israel. It is armed and supported by Syria and Iran, and it has branches in some 20 countries. It occupies 20 percent of the Lebanese parliament but that percentage does not give it sufficient due. Here is Amir Taheri in the London Times:

Hezbollah is a state within the Lebanese state. It controls some 25% of the national territory. Almost 400,000 of Lebanon's estimated 4 million inhabitants live under its control. It collects its own taxes with a 20% levy, known as "khoms", on all incomes. It runs its own schools, where a syllabus produced in Iran is taught at all levels. It also runs clinics, hospitals, social welfare networks and centres for orphans and widows.

The party controls the elected municipal councils and appoints local officials, who in theory should be selected by the central government in Beirut. To complete its status as a virtual state, the party maintains a number of unofficial "embassies": the one in Tehran is bigger and has a larger number of staff than that of Lebanon itself.

Hezbollah also has its own media including a satellite television channel, Al-Manar (the lighthouse), which is watched all over the Arab world, four radio stations, newspapers and magazines plus a book publishing venture. The party has its own system of justice based on sharia and operates its own police force, courts and prisons. Hezbollah runs youth clubs, several football teams and a number of matrimonial agencies.

In sum, it may very well have the run of Lebanon more than non-Hezbollah factions and institutions. Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, brags about this today.

As for Israel's disproportion, it is worth remembering that Israel is but one state -- with a majority of Jews but a substantial Arab population. The Arab states number 22. The land-mass comparison is some 10,000 square miles compared to over five million square miles. That does not include Iran. The Palestinian Authority, situated now in the southwest of Israel, is a Hamas entity -- it is more lethal and Islamist than Arafat's PLO.

President Bush, in articulating the post-9/11 doctrine, stated: "Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime."

In some respects it is unnecessary to ask whether Lebanon "harbors" or "harbored" Hezbollah; but one definition of "harbor" is "to provide refuge" and there is no question that at the bare minimum, Lebanon allowed Hezbollah to operate in its country -- gave it ministerial portfolios in the cabinet and allowed the seating of its elected officials in parliament. It may, as a fragile, burgeoning, democracy have had no choice but to do this. But the question remains: Was that fragile democracy slowly moving to eradicate Hezbollah from its midst or was Hezbollah growing stronger and stronger?

We know this about terrorists groups: As nature abhors a vacuum, terrorists thrive in them -- that is where they grow and empower themselves. And at least since Israel left Lebanon six years ago, Hezbollah has not gotten weaker. Further, if Hezbollah had believed Lebanon was constricting it rather than allowing it to thrive, it would not have launched an incursion into Israel.

Nonetheless, Israel has not deliberately targeted the Lebanese government. Still, the question arises, however, that if the U.S. sides alone with Israel, would that not be a terrible message to send to the broader Middle East democracy initiative. This is the question that is the most lopsided of them all.

We have long believed that, paraphrasing former CIA director Jim Woolsey, democracy is not one vote, one time. Israel is in the Middle East and is a democracy that passes the Woolsey test and has done so for almost 60 years. Lebanon has had one election in recent times and it weaved Hezbollah into that democracy. The PA had an election and it put Hamas in charge. It seems to us that if one wants to further the Middle East democracy project -- and not be cynical about it -- the U.S. is doing precisely what it should: showing support for the established democracy, not the fragile and inept one that allows, tolerates or -- at a minimum -- turned a blind eye to Hezbollah in its midst.

At the end of the day, if Middle Eastern democracies are desired, and they are, does one not want models to point to? What model should the U.S. be pointing to to the Iranian dissidents, the Egyptian dissidents, the Saudi dissidents? Would we be right to say, "Vote and behave like they did in Lebanon, and erect a government like that (where 400,000 people live under Hezbollah control)," or "Look at Israel: It comes to the aid of others around the world, it has a minority population with full democratic rights that even serve in government, and its economy, free of oil, works."

It may be wishful thinking to assume Arab peoples will fully want Israel as their model, indeed it is probably naive. Nonetheless, if the U.S. is to be held accountable for initiating and supporting democracies, the one that is one year old and hosts Hezbollah is not the model we should be propagating. So the next time the question is asked about the Middle East democracy project in light of Israel, Lebanon, and the Middle East -- the reminder needs to be made: Israel is a democracy and it is in the Middle East. And one final point: If Hezbollah, Syria, and Iran were to be victorious in their military actions and ideology, two things would not exist: 1) Israel and 2) Lebanese democracy of any kind.

Contact Shaul Ceder at shaul.ceder@gmail.com

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Posted by Zalmi, July 26, 2006.

Sobering editorial from the NEW YORK POST

July 22, 2006 (since which the tide has turned somewhat, but most points are still very valid).

All Hezbollah has to do to achieve victory is not to lose completely. But for Israel to emerge the acknowledged winner, it has to shatter Hezbollah. Yet Israeli miscalculations have left Hezbollah alive and kicking.

Israel has to pull itself together now, to send in ground troops in sufficient numbers, with fierce resolve to do what must be done: Root out Hezbollah fighters and kill them. This means Israel will suffer painful casualties - more today than if the Israeli Defense Force had gone in full blast at this fight's beginning.

The situation is grave. A perceived Hezbollah win will be a massive victory for terror, as well as a triumph for Iran and Syria. And everybody loves a winner - especially in the Middle East, where Arabs and Persians have been losing so long.

Israel can't afford a Hezbollah win. America can't afford it. Civilization can't afford it. Yet it just might happen.

Israel tried to make war halfway, and only made a mess. Let's review where the situation stands:

* By trying to spare Israeli lives through the use of airpower and long-range artillery fire instead of ground troops, the IDF played into Hezbollah's hands. The terrorists could claim that Israel feared them. Meanwhile, Israeli targeting proved shockingly sloppy, failing to ravage Hezbollah, while hitting civilians - to the international media's delight.

* The IDF is readying a reinforced brigade of armor and 3,000 to 5,000 troops for a "limited incursion" into southern Lebanon. Won't work. Not enough troops. And Hezbollah's had time to get locked and loaded. This is going to be messy - any half-hearted Israeli effort will fall short.

* Famed for its penetration, Israeli intelligence failed this time. It didn't detect the new weapons Iran and Syria had provided to Hezbollah, from anti-ship missiles to longer-range rockets. And, after years of spying, it couldn't find Hezbollah.

This should set off global alarm bells: If Hezbollah can hide rockets, Iran can hide nukes.

* The media sided heavily with Hezbollah (surprise, surprise). Rocket attacks on Israel were reported clinically, but IDF strikes on Lebanon have been milked for every last drop of emotion. We hear about broken glass in Haifa - and bleeding babies in Beirut.

* Washington rejoiced when several Arab governments criticized Hezbollah for its actions. But the Arab street, Shia and Sunni, has coalesced behind Hezbollah. Saudi and Egyptian government statements are worth about as much as a greeting card from Marie Antoinette on New Year's Day, 1789.

* Syria and Iran are getting a free ride. Hezbollah fights and dies, Damascus and Tehran collect the dividends.

* Israel looks irresolute and incapable - encouraging its enemies.

* The "world community" wants a cease-fire - which would only benefit the terrorists. Hezbollah would claim (accurately) that it had withstood Israel's assault. Couldn't get a better terrorist recruiting advertisement.

* A cease-fire would be under U.N. auspices. Gee, thanks. No U.N. force would protect Israel's interests, but plenty of U.N. contingents would cooperate with or turn a blind eye to the terrorists. Think Russia's an honest broker? Ask its Jews who fled to Israel. Would French troops protect Israeli interests? Ask the Jews Vichy bureaucrats packed off to the death camps. (The French are more anti-Semitic than the Germans - just less efficient.)

* One bright spot: The Bush administration continues to resist international attempts to bully Israel into a premature cease-fire. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is flying off to the big falafel stand as a token gesture, not to interfere with Israel's self-defense.

But the clock's ticking. Washington can only buy Israel so much time.

* Every rocket that lands in Israel is a propaganda victory for Hezbollah. After 1,000-plus Israeli air-strikes, the rockets keep falling, and Israel looks impotent. The price of sparing Israeli infantrymen has been the elevation of Hezbollah to heroic status through the Muslim world.

* The Olmert government tried to wage war on the cheap. Such efforts always raise the cost in the end. Olmert resembles President Bill Clinton - willing to lob bombs from a distance, but unwilling to accept that war means friendly casualties.

* Israel needs to grasp the power of the global media. Long proud of going its own way in the face of genocidal anti-Semitism, Israel now has to recognize that the media can overturn the verdict of the battlefield. Even if Israel pulls off a last-minute win on the ground, the anti-Israel propaganda machine has been given so big a head-start that Hezbollah still may be portrayed as the victor.

The situation is grim. Israel looks more desperate every day, while Hezbollah appears more defiant.

This is ultimately about far more than a buffer zone in southern Lebanon. In the long run, it's about Israel's survival. And about preventing the rise of a nuclear Iran and the strengthening of the rogue regime in Syria. It's also about the future of Lebanon - everybody's victim.

The mess Israel has made of its opportunity to smack down Hezbollah should be a wake-up call to the country's leadership. The IDF looks like a pathetic shadow of the bold military that Ariel Sharon led into Egypt three decades ago. The IDF's intelligence, targeting and planning were all deficient. Technology failed to vanquish flesh and blood. The myth of the IDF's invincibility just shattered.

If Israel can't turn this situation around quickly, the failure will be a turning point in its history. And not for the better.

Contact Zalmi at zalmi@zalmi.net or go to his website:

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Posted by Bernard J. Shapiro, July 26, 2006.

Seeing through the fog of war

Israel is at war and you need to know how to separate fantasy from reality. Understanding the meaning of words in such a situation is very difficult for even the best linguist or psychologist. We must go back and remember the classic book by George Orwell, 1984, in which a totalitarian government manipulates the meaning of words to confuse its citizens about reality. He called this new language "newspeak". While Orwell's book was an attempt to satirize the Soviet communist regime, its meaning extends much more broadly.


1. Remember that Arabs lie and the figures given for civilian casualties are greatly exaggerated. Since most Hizbollah and Hamas terrorists wear civilian clothes and mix with the local population, it is very easy to distort the true toll on civilians.

2. Damage to Lebanese infrastructure is also greatly exaggerated. Photographers and reporters in Lebanon MUST repeat the Arab terrorist propaganda line or be tortured or executed. No such threat hangs over reporters in Israel. When the media reports from both sides, you can get a very distorted picture. We tend to think that the veracity of the two sides is equal.

3. It is a hoax that there is NO MILITARY solution to Hezbollah, Hamas, Iran and genocidal terrorism. Those that come to kill Jews must be destroyed. There is no other choice. No "Mr. Nice Guy". The most moral position for Israel is to protect its own citizens and soldiers.

4. It is a hoax that the UN can do anything good for Israel. That also goes for Europe, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The usefulness of international forces separating Arab terrorists from Israeli defenders is nil, nada, zero. In fact, it is a negative, inhibiting Israel's defensive measures.

All diplomacy is also a hoax. Only the power of the IDF allows Israel to survive. Right and justice are nice, but in the final analysis, a nation's ability to survive depends on raw military power. Treaties, cease fires and negotiations are useless.

5. It is a hoax that public opinion is of great significance to Israel's survival. A strong aggressive public relations campaign is quite important, but is NO substitute for unflinching resolve to protect Israel's security and guarantee its survival.

Golda Meir once said: "I would rather have a thousand angry editorials directed at Israel, than one beautiful eulogy."

I would have to use the words of Harry Truman to express my contempt for the world that has murdered, raped, pillaged, expelled, forcibly converted and finally exterminated us. As Truman once said: "They ain't worth a bucket of warm spit."

6. Another hoax is that Israel depends on American aid and must be willing to sacrifice its security to the interest of its ally. The reality is that Israel and America have a very useful symbiotic relationship. The many ways in which the U.S. benefits from the relationship hardly need enumeration -- intelligence, technology, counterterrorism techniques and much more. America gets its money's worth and more. BUT THIS IS NEVER MENTIONED IN POLITE CIRCLES.

For that matter, much or most of the monetary foreign aid to Israel is spent in the U.S. and goes into the American economy. It is Israeli leaders, for their own political purposes, who fail to utilize Israeli power to alter its asymmetric relationship to America.

7. Another hoax of the Left and the Islamists, for the past 13 years, is that when Israel defends itself it hurts its cause. That is, it should try to "win the hearts and minds" of the enemy, and "harming civilians" is counterproductive. Of course, we know that Hamas and Hezbollah barbarically and illegally operate freely within civilian neighborhoods in S. Lebanon and the PA.

A very wise Rabbi Schiff gives the analogy:

"If you and I were neighbors, and I allowed a family to move into my house in my living room and shoot rockets at your house from my yard, and to store their rockets in my basement, and the police do nothing about it for years, and have "Peace Now" on my lawn telling you not to harm me standing in my kitchen - what would you do?"

Orwell Meets Alice - Through The Mid-East Looking Glass

We have been treated to the modern equivalent of Orwellian newspeak, not to mention a harrowing trip through Alice's looking glass. One could not help but notice the extent to which the Arabs were being portrayed as pure and innocent. A casual observer would certainly think that all violence in the Middle East was a product of bloodthirsty Jewish settlers roaming the Judean-Samarian hills looking for Arab prey.

The PLO/PA leadership, its hands dripping with Jewish and Arab blood, demanded protection from the vicious Jewish residents of Judea, Samaria and Gaza (YESHA). It refused to return to negotiations until its demands were met. The gullible international media took this whole charade seriously. The United Nations began debating a resolution to give protection to the poor vulnerable Palestinians. The PLO demanded that all Jewish communities of YESHA be ethnically cleansed of those rotten murderous Jews. At the very least they needed to be disarmed, to make them easier targets for Arab terrorists.

The high and the mighty beseeched Arafat to return to the talks with Israel. The late Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, obviously anxious to please his PLO friends, began a crackdown on Kach and Kahane Chai and other so-called Israeli extremists. Consider this "logic": Rabin determined that Baruch Goldstein acted alone in his reprisal act. He then decided to outlaw the organizations associated with him. Guilt by association is what made McCarthy big in the 50's. It was wrong then and it is wrong now.

Reality Check: Now Kach and Kahane Chai have been labeled as terrorist organizations, although they never have committed a single act of terror as a body. The PLO, which is guilty of thousands of murders of Arabs and Jews, continuing still, is labeled a "partner for peace" and will be given arms to kill some more (as "policemen").

Reality Check: Are Arabs in danger from armed Israelis in YESHA? Some research reveals the following figures since the famous handshake on September 13, 1993:

Israelis killed by Arabs = over 1600, plus 10,000 injured and maimed for life
Arabs killed by Arabs = over 500
Arab attacks on Israeli targets = 25,000+
Private Israeli attacks on Arabs = 1 (Goldstein killed 29)
(Of course MANY terrorists were killed in their FAILED attempts to murder Jews. This point is NOT relevant to this discussion).

It is clear that except for the attack by Goldstein, the Arabs have not been threatened by Jews and certainly need no special protection. If you travel to YESHA you will notice that every Jewish village needs a security fence, while every Arab village is open. Doesn't this tell you who is threatened and who isn't? All the talk about disarming the Jews is a cover for the Arab desire to murder them. And if you desire murder, wouldn't it be nice to disarm your victim first?

The media has begun to adopt another tactic which we should protest. In the New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Houston Chronicle, CNN and most of the other media, opponents of the suicidal Oslo, Roadmap and Jewish Expulsion Plan are being referred to as rightwing extreme, Arab-hating and anti-peace groups. Do you ever remember the PLO, PA, Hezbollah or Hamas ever being referred to as Jew-hating groups, although their covenants and speeches are filled with hatred of Jews? Arafat and then Abbas often referred to Jews as "filthy, sons of monkeys and pigs", but are still rarely referred to in the media as Jew-haters.

Reality Check: To the best of my knowledge there is a distinct difference between Jewish feelings about Arabs and Arab feelings about Jews. Arabs are taught from the earliest grades to despise Jews, and their clerics preach hatred (Itbach El Yahoud - slaughter the Jews) in many of their services. Jews, on the other hand do not preach hatred, but those who are not brain dead recognize, after 120 years of being attacked, that Arabs mean them harm. The media is totally obfuscating the truth about the conflict by the use of such clichd phrases as "Arab-hating Jews" or "cycle of violence."

Another problem with media coverage of the Israel-PLO/PA so-called "peace negotiations", is the way their opponents are described. Arabs opposed to the deal because they want to kill or expel all Jews from "Palestine" immediately, are equated with Jews and Israelis who want Israel to survive in secure borders. Opponents of national suicide are called "anti-peace", as opposed to supporters of such suicide being "pro-peace".

Reality Check: Most opponents of the deal with Arafat/Abbas oppose it because it is suicidal for many strategic, historical and objective reasons. None of us are anti-peace. We just recognize that the path chosen by the Rabin/ Peres/Barak/Olmert governments will lead not to the hoped for and advertised peace, but to Israel's destruction.

In another bizarre twist of logic the Los Angeles Times reports that Israel's leading peace group, Shalom Achshav (Peace Now), had urged Sharon to remove 500,000 Jewish inhabitants of YESHA (including Jerusalem) to avert widespread bloodshed under Palestinian self-government, and to forcibly evict all Jews within five years. They said that their continued presence, "fostering violence and bloodshed, endangers peace prospects."

Reality Check: The facts demonstrate that it is the Palestinians and not the Jews that are the cause of 99.9% of the violence. Why not remove the Palestinians? What Peace Now is really admitting is that there is NO PEACE nor any prospect of PEACE.

The liberal Jewish establishment and most of the media were appalled when Rabbi Meir Kahane first began talking about transferring the Arabs from Eretz Yisrael. Most are still appalled at this idea. A new idea has come into fashion, though, among these same righteous Jews: transferring the Jews from YESHA (heartland of Eretz Yisrael). Former Secretary of State James Baker once said it would be a good idea to use the $10 Billion in US loan guarantees to buy out and transfer the Jews from YESHA. US President Bill Clinton seemed to like the idea and so did Rabin's coalition partner Meretz.

Reality Check: There is no moral difference between transferring either Jews or Arabs from YESHA. What Kahane said years ago about the inability of Jews and Arabs to live together is being validated today by the same people who condemned him.

The 120-year war of extermination launched by the Arabs against the Jews of Israel has had many twists and turns. Sadly, it seems headed for Alice's looking glass and the world of 1984, where black is white, war is peace and good is evil.

Bernard J. Shapiro is the Executive Director of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies. He is also the editor of its publications including THE MACCABEAN ONLINE URL:http://www.freeman.org/online.htm and its daily subscriber list of news and commentary, The Freemanlist and the Freeman Center blog.

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Posted by Jack Engelhard, July 26, 2006.

Those of us who root for Israel are still waiting to exhale.

Where's the headline that tells us that Israel has delivered a knockout punch? We search for it on Fox, MSNBC, even CNN, and certainly in our local and national newspapers, but it just won't give. The bad news keeps on coming. Israel is being scorched by rockets and missiles and the IDF is fighting gallantly but not as swiftly and as decisively as in the past.

We got spoiled in 1948, 1967, 1973, wars with a beginning, middle and an end. Entebbe marked Israel as a nation of heroes.

What happened?

My guess is that the magic left Israel the moment Yitzhak Rabin shook the hand of Yasser Arafat. From there, Israel learned retreat and defeat.

Or rather, Israel's leaders conditioned the people to accept passivity and humiliation, all for the illusion of a "peace process."

Call it, rather, a softening up process, whereby Israel has been drowsed by the lullabies of its rulers.

Ehud Barak pulled the IDF out of Lebanon in what the Arab world perceived as panic. Hezbollah moved in.

The same panic motivated the regime of Ariel Sharon and Ehud Olmert to flee from Gaza, and Hamas moved in.

These leaders (or their proxies), from Rabin onward, must answer for every Israeli life that's been lost as they, these leaders, went whoring after peace.

Rabin, Barak, Netanyahu, Sharon, Olmert, Peres--all must explain how it has come to this, this day when Israel is vulnerable to thousands of rocket attacks. Where were they when those underground tunnels were being built? Most were busy slandering religious Israelis.

Sharon and Olmert had no time for Hamas or Hezbollah, busy as they were bulldozing several thousand "nationalist" Israelis out of Gaza.

Today, Olmert speaks heroically. Too late, Mr. Prime Minister.

Also today, Israel's failed politicians continue to show up on our television screens as experts on this crisis, and that is disgusting.

Mr. Barak, half of this is your fault. Please, stay out of our living rooms. Stay home and hide your shame.

Sharon and Olmert kept talking about "painful concessions" and here it is, the pain. First came the concessions, and now, here's the pain.

But who knew the pain would be this bad, so bad that as the rest of us weep, Tony Kushner and the Washington Post's Richard Cohen may have reason to laugh. They've been saying that Israel (not the 22 tyrannical and fanatical countries that surround Israel) is a "mistake." Incredibly, they are joined in Israel by journalists, writers, filmmakers, academics, jurists, and, as always, the political elite.

They too must be held accountable for their treachery.

I know the people of Israel first-hand, from my service in Haifa, yes, the same Haifa being bombed today.

Israelis, 99 percent of them, are like Americans. They love peace, cherish liberty. They continue to advance all civilization in technology and science.

They are, indeed, a kingdom of priests, a holy nation.

They deserve better and if there is a God in heaven--well, if there is, he'd better hurry up.

Jack Engelhard is the author of the bestseller "Indecent Proposal," the award-winning "Escape from Mount Moriah," and the novel "The Days of the Bitter End," which is being prepared for movie production. His latest novel, "The Bathsheba Deadline," is now available in serial form at Amazon.com. He receives e-mail at viewopinion@aol.com

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Posted by Daily Alert, July 26, 2006.

This article was written by Michael Young, who is opinion editor of the Daily Star newspaper in Lebanon and a contributing editor to Reason magazine in the United States. It appeared in the Spectator in England
(www.spectator.co.uk/printer-friendly/23873/ the-lebanese-really-blame-hezbollah.thtml)

BEIRUT -- The smoke from the countless fires burning in Beirut's southern suburbs have turned the city's skies battleship grey. It makes mid-July seem almost autumnal and saps Beirut of what remains of its spirit. Even the busiest high streets are largely empty now, and most shops close quickly at midday, not wanting to release their employees too late.

Outside central Beirut, the effect of Israel's attacks is more dramatic. Many of the country's roads are pocked with craters, the damage to the infrastructure could take years to repair, 235 are dead so far -- most of them civilians -- and buildings burn. On Wednesday morning, Israeli troops crossed into southern Lebanon to carry out what they call "pinpoint attacks".

The Lebanese Prime Minister, Faoud Siniora, has said that "the gates of hell have been opened up in Lebanon" -- and it's difficult to disagree. But what has not been so widely reported is that while officials will blame Israel for the misery and chaos, a substantial number of Lebanese -- in some cases, ironically, the officials themselves -- have a more nuanced view. Of course the people here are angry and anxious about the possibility of a widening of the Israeli attacks, but their rage, as they see the country being taken apart, is often directed against Hezbollah.

The Lebanese people have watched as Hezbollah has built up a heavily armed state-within-a-state that has now carried the country into a devastating conflict it cannot win and many are fed up. Sunni Muslims, Christians and the Druze have no desire to pay for the martial vanity of the Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah. Nor will they take kindly to his transforming the devastation into a political victory.

Some even welcome Israel's intervention. As one Lebanese politician said to me in private (but would never dare say in public) Israel must not stop now. It sounds cynical, he said, but "for things to get better in Lebanon, Nasrallah must be weakened further".

Even some Shiites are beginning to have doubts about Nasrallah. If interviewed on television they will praise Hezbollah, but when the cameras are off, there are those who will suddenly become more critical. Many have had to flee, leaving behind their homes and possessions with no hope of recovering anything of any worth.

One evening this week I looked out of my apartment window in the Christian neighbourhood of Ashrafieh and saw an Israeli shell exploding on top of the grain silo at Beirut port. The colossal concrete silo got the better of that exchange, but in the Shia quarters of southern Beirut the bombs have won outright. Hezbollah's so-called "security perimeter" -- the party's sanctum sanctorum, where Nasrallah and his officials lived and worked -- has been reduced to a smouldering wasteland. Displaced Shia families have moved into Beirut proper, taking refuge in schools, public facilities and empty apartments.

Here in Beirut, Nasrallah is also blamed for the suffering in southern Lebanon which, under heavy fire from Israeli cannons, has suffered in the same way as the southern half of the city. On Tuesday, a family of nine died after air strikes in Aitaroun; another family was killed in Tyre. It's difficult for journalists to gain access to the south since the Israelis have bombed all the roads and bridges, but local television crews on the ground record an exodus of refugees northwards. Now that Israel has started targeting transport trucks -- in the hope of preventing the movement of weapons to Hezbollah -- it is becoming increasingly difficult for even UN aid to get through.

It is quite understandable, then, that those who can have fled or are fleeing the country. Nearly 400 people left on an Italian navy vessel on Monday night, and a ferry chartered by France took 1,200 Europeans to Cyprus. On Tuesday the first Royal Navy warship, HMS Gloucester, took 180 Britons to safety, with a further 4,750 waiting on the dock, hoping to follow by the end of the week. An American cruise ship is on its way to Lebanon to collect many of the reportedly 25,000 US citizens here, followed by planes and ships from countries as far away as Chile. Even the UN has let its non-essential staff go.

For the rest of us, stuck here in Beirut, the real question is how long the electricity, the water and the telephone network will last. Israel has not yet resorted to its usual tactic of hitting the power grid, and the electricity remains on in most regions outside the south; however, it seems inevitable that if Hezbollah bombs Tel Aviv, Israel will retaliate with an attack on the power supply. Even without a direct hit, if Israel pursues its blockade shortages will become acute -- this could return us to the Israeli siege of Beirut in 1982, when we lived for three grinding months without electricity, water, fresh food or telephones.

The difficulties of doing without food and fuel are obvious, but what people forget is that when the electricity goes, so does the television. All the main stations have special programmes on the conflict which means extended news broadcasts with reports from around the country and interviews with analysts -- dismally protracted to fill up a 24-hour schedule. It's exhausting but the coverage can also be life-saving. It provides an early warning system for us here, allowing us to gauge where the danger zones are.

If the TV goes, so does Al-Manar, Hezbollah's television station which is still transmitting from a remote location (though the Israelis have demolished its headquarters in the southern suburbs). Al-Manar is all rousing propaganda, stock footage of successful raids on Israeli positions, of intimidating militiamen marching through the southern suburbs, of poor Shiites throwing rice on party members celebrating the Israeli withdrawal in May 2000 -- the party's moment of absolute triumph. Interminable interviews with guests praise "the brave resistance" -- a phrase which even to Shiite ears sounds increasingly hollow.

The Daily Alert is published by the Jewish Center for Public Affairs for the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Contact them to subscribe at daily-alert@dailyalert.org

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Posted by Likud-Herut, July 26, 2006.
[Editor's Note: Brigette Gabriel commenting on Robertson being Hezbollah's Tool said in www.americancongressfortruth.com, "While talking about media coverage today, I thought you would be interested in this information. Gee? It was only like 2 years ago when CNN admitted they shaded stories for Saddam to get access to Iraq.... Basically becoming Saddam's Propaganda Network...... So they could gain a "competitive" advantage on Fox by having access to Iraq........ Now a CNN Reporter gains access from Hezbollah and turns in a propaganda piece for them, later admitting he was their propaganda tool... this after the CBC and BBC printed stories that the Israeli Army is the one censoring the news!!!!

"CNN's senior international correspondent Nic Robertson admitted on Sunday that his anti-Israel report on civilian casualties in Lebanon was stage-managed from start to finish by Hizballah terrorists... CNN's Robertson Now Admits: Hezbollah 'Had Control' of His Anti-Israel Piece."]

Better late than never? On CNN's Reliable Sources on Sunday, CNN's senior international correspondent Nic Robertson added all of the caveats and disclaimers that he should have included in his story last week that amounted to his giving an uncritical forum for the terrorist group Hezbollah to spout unverifiable anti-Israeli propaganda.

Back on July 18, Hezbollah took Robertson and his crew on a tour of a heavily damaged south Beirut neighborhood. The Hezbollah "press officer" even instructed the CNN camera:

"Just look. Shoot. Look at this building. Is it a military base? Is it a military base, or just civilians living in this building?"

In his original story, Robertson had no complaints about the journalistic limitations of a story put together under such tight controls, and Robertson himself at one point seemed to agree with the Hezbollah propaganda claim that Israeli jets had targeted a civilian area: "As we run past the rubble, we see much that points to civilian life, no evidence apparent of military equipment."

Challenged by Reliable Sources host (and Washington Post media writer) Howard Kurtz on Sunday, Robertson suggested Hezbollah has "very, very sophisticated and slick media operations," that the terrorist group "had control of the situation. They designated the places that we went to, and we certainly didn't have time to go into the houses or lift up the rubble to see what was underneath," and he even contradicted Hezbollah's self-serving spin: "There's no doubt that the [Israeli] bombs there are hitting Hezbollah facilities."

But the closest Robertson came to making any of these points in the taped package that aired last week was admitting that "we [he and his CNN crew] didn't go burrowing into all the houses," after pointing out (for the second time) that "we didn't see any military type of equipment" in the area Hezbollah chose to let them tour.

Five days later, Robertson argued that "journalistic integrity" required skepticism: "When you hear their [Hezbollah's] claims, they have to come with more than a grain of salt, that you have to put in some journalistic integrity. That you have to point out to the audience and let them know that this was a guided tour by Hezbollah press officials along with their security, that it was a very rushed affair."

While some viewers undoubtedly deduced out that it was "a guided tour" from the numerous sound bites from the Hezbollah press officer, it's not as if Robertson ever complained about his limitations or explicitly warned viewers that there was no way he could confirm any of the claims.

Nic Robertson, of course, isn't the only correspondent going on these Hezbollah-arranged tours, as CNN's Reliable Sources noted yesterday. In a set-up to his interview with Robertson, Kurtz played clips of NBC's Richard Engel and CBS's Elizabeth Palmer relating their trips into the damaged areas, with Palmer providing the sort of disclaimer that Robertson failed to include last week: "This morning, Hezbollah showed journalists around the ruins of its former stronghold, but Hezbollah is also determined that outsiders will only see what it wants them to see."

Now more of Robertson's live interview (10:15am EDT) on the July 23 Reliable Sources.

This following is an excerpt from

(transcript corrected against the actual broadcast):

Howard Kurtz: "I want to go now to CNN's Nic Robertson, who joins us live from Beirut. Nic Robertson, we were speaking a moment ago about the way journalists cover Hezbollah and some of these tours that Hezbollah officials have arranged of the bomb damage in the areas of Southern Lebanon. You, I believe, got one of those tours. Isn't it difficult for you as a journalist to independently verify any claims made by Hezbollah, because you're not able to go into the buildings and see whether or not there is any military activity or any weapons being hidden there?"

Nic Robertson: "Well, Howard, there's no doubt about it: Hezbollah has a very, very sophisticated and slick media operations. In fact, beyond that, it has very, very good control over its areas in the south of Beirut.

They deny journalists access into those areas. They can turn on and off access to hospitals in those areas. They have a lot of power and influence. You don't get in there without their permission. And when I went in, we were given about 10 or 15 minutes, quite literally running through a number of neighborhoods that they directed and they took us to."

"What I would say at that time was, it was very clear to me that the Hezbollah press official who took us on that guided tour - and there were Hezbollah security officials around us at the time with walkie-talkie radios - that he felt a great deal of anxiety about the situation....But there's no doubt about it. They had control of the situation. They designated the places that we went to, and we certainly didn't have time to go into the houses or lift up the rubble to see what was underneath."

"So what we did see today in a similar excursion, and Hezbollah is now running a number of these every day, taking journalists into this area. They realize that this is a good way for them to get their message out, taking journalists on a regular basis. This particular press officer came across his press office today, what was left of it in the rubble. He pointed out business cards that he said were from his office that was a Hezbollah press office in that area."

"So there's no doubt that the bombs there are hitting Hezbollah facilities. But from what we can see, there appear to be a lot of civilian damage, a lot of civilian properties. But again, as you say, we didn't have enough time to go in, root through those houses, see if perhaps there was somebody there who was, you know, a taxi driver by day, and a Hezbollah fighter by night...."

Kurtz: "To what extent do you feel like you're being used to put up the pictures that they want - obviously, it's terrible that so many civilians have been killed - without any ability, as you just outlined, to verify, because - to verify Hezbollah's role, because this is a fighting force that is known to blend in among the civilian population and keep some of its weapons there?"

Robertson: "Absolutely. And I think as we try and do our job, which is go out and see what's happened to the best of our ability, clearly, in that environment, in the southern suburbs of Beirut that Hezbollah controls, the only way we can get into those areas is with a Hezbollah escort.

And absolutely, when you hear their claims they have to come with more than a grain of salt, that you have to put in some journalistic integrity. That you have to point out to the audience and let them know that this was a guided tour by Hezbollah press officials along with their security, that it was a very rushed affair, that there wasn't time to go and look through those buildings."

"The audience has to know the conditions of that tour. But again, if we didn't get all - or we could not get access to those areas without Hezbollah compliance, they control those areas."

Contact the British Likud-Herut organization at likud-herut.org.uk

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Posted by Mordechai Ben-Menachem, July 25, 2006.


Let's take a moment to review where we are and what has occurred, and from this, perhaps we will have a better idea of what may occur.

The war began when Hamas tunnelled under the fence, attacked an army post inside the internationally accepted, undisputed borders of the country, killed two and took a third prisoner (kidnapped). We began operation in Gaza, mostly because of Corporal Gilead Shalit. The government would, in my estimation, have continued its cowardice had they "just" murdered.

Once these operation had begun, Hezbollah, the Barak-empowered organization sponsored by Iran and (mis)managed from Syria took a similar action. Crossed the international border, killed eight soldiers and kidnapped two into Lebanon.

If the Gaza operation could have been waffled by the international apologists for terror, the Lebanese operation could not. It was clearly an act of war, over an international border, from a country with whom the entire civilized world had recognized that we had established an international border, with all that implies.

Both incidents show interesting facts concerning the security value of fences -- a stupid waste of taxpayer's money and an asinine misplacement of expectations.

This was followed by us beginning to bombard Hezbollah emplacements throughout Lebanon. Not just in the South, bombing gun emplacements, as had been done in the past, but real bombing, and massively. Clearly, the rules had changed with the kidnapping of two soldiers. By the way, the two taken to Lebanon are reservists, one is a father.

After we began heavy bombing operations throughout Lebanon, they, Hezbollah, began shelling Israeli cities and towns throughout the North of the country, including both Holy Cities of Tzfat and Tiberius and also Haifa (our third largest city and a large industrial centre). In their first bombardment, they killed two citizens. It should be noted that while we constantly drop flyers all over Lebanon asking the civilians to please get out of the way (BTW, we also use Arabic-speakers to personally telephone Lebanese citizens to ask them to help themselves and please get out of the way). Hezbollah has done everything possible, including murder, to prevent them moving north as they try to use them as shields. One picture in the British Guardian showed a Lebanese family that had been decimated in their van. It later turned out that the van (and family) was destroyed by Hezbollah, not by us, though of course, the Guardian did not bother to retract.

There have been very interesting economic phenomena. The price of oil on the international markets initially rose, but has remained steady. The price of the Sheqel initially dropped against the dollar and Euro, but has totally recovered and continues to rise. In other words, this war has not (yet) significantly impacted either the Israeli economy or the world's. Another interesting impact is on Aliyah.

What is Zahal doing?

IDF has been steadily advancing into Lebanon. We have declared that a new buffer zone will be implemented in South Lebanon. However, we have also declared that we have no interest in manning this buffer zone and we expect it to be manned by some international force -- this assumes that the Lebanese Army cannot and will not man it themselves as Hezbollah is significantly stronger than they are and they cannot stand before them.

IDF has taken Bint j'Bail ("Daughter of the Mountain" -- a beautiful name for the place). This has always been considered the Hezbollah "capital" in Lebanon (as opposed to what many thought, that it was in the Bekaa). This town was heavily fortified. Heavily means, the entire town, almost every single home and building, had a bunker under it, some of them to fantastic depths and many reinforced with multiple meters of concrete. BTW, the Bekaa valley used to be one of the primary opium-growing areas of the world. One of the points of the 1982 war was to stop opium export (Assad's oil-equivalent).

IDF has been bombing heavily with three objectives. A) Destruction of all Hezbollah infrastructures, particularly command and control. B) Interdiction of resupply of Hezbollah from Syria and Iran. C) Prevent them from spiriting away those two soldiers that they have to foreign parts as they did with Ron Arad 20 years ago (sold by Hezbollah to Iran for cash). In addition, of course, we have also been using airstrikes to take out rocket launchers in great quantity. (Katyusha rockets are generally launched from trucks with many tubes. While they can be set off to launch from a donkey, there is no way to aim without the truck.)

One of the results of A has been that Hezbollah has had to resort to "Vietnam-era-like" warfare of using firebases. Once a firebase is destroyed, they entire ground structure is without of leadership. This has been very effective and has aided us in taking large quantities of captives -- it seems their motivation to die and get those 72 virgins is not quite as high as some thought.

Nasrallah has been "apologising" to his people over the past day, they are not doing anywhere near as well as they expected. In the British parliament, it has been stated (this afternoon) that the constant shelling of northern Israel, with tens of dead civilians, has caused Israel "much discomfort" -- this goes well beyond so-called British understatement and can only be called gross stupidity.

My assessment and opinion

In principle, I think Zahal is doing a good job and that the government is doing a terrible job. The political function (to remind everyone, in a democracy, the army is under the control of the politicians and this is as it should and must be) began by being and has remained, much too slow to react and much too hesitant. Had they been decisive, the damage to Hezbollah could have been greater, in less time. For instance, there has been no serious damage, or at least not sufficiently serious, in the Bekaa. This provides Hezbollah, and particularly their leadership, with a fallback area.

In the beginning, it was stated that Nasrallah was not a target. It seems that this was an honest statement, albeit a stupid idea. Today, it was announced that Nasrallah would be targeted and it was an objective to cause maximum damage to their leadership. Again, this should not, I feel be discussed, but simply done. Once significant leadership roles had been eliminated, then it could have been discussed. Our political leadership tends to try to play politics too much while at war -- talks too mach and does too little.

I believe the war is going reasonably well, though there are points that I am not happy with. It must be remembered that Hezbollah has weapons that could strike us from being fired from North of Beirut. Making the South a buffer zone is helpful, very helpful. It takes the short-range rockets out of the reckoning and that is a large quantity (many thousands of their arsenal). However, a buffer zone by itself is not sufficient.

It would, I think, be a mistake to talk about Hezbollah being 'smashed once and for all' -- no matter how much we mash them, it will not be 'once and for all'. The hydra will rear its ugly head again and again as long as their sponsors continue to facilitate this (Iran is the leader, Syria is the facilitator).

Europe has, throughout this crisis period vacillated between stupidity and irrelevancy. As time marches on and they get closer to Arab control, they get weaker. Do not, in my estimation, expect them to play a relevant role on this stage.

Will we "win" this war? I don't think there is a clear definition of win. And I think that that is the biggest problem of the war -- a lack of leadership has prevented such a definition from being determined. However, this war is not Israel-Hezbollah, or even Israel-Lebanon. This war is the first instalment of the war between the West -- US and Israel -- and Iran.

Mordechai Ben-Menachem is at Ben-Gurion University. He can be reached by email at quality@computer.org

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Posted by Manuel Vider, July 25, 2006.

Dear Editor: Less than the expulsion of ALL Muslims living in the place that these conmotions happen, is there any other practical solution?

This was written by Craig Whitlock, Washington Post Foreign Service, and it appeared July 20, 2006; A14.

Islamic Extremists Newly Seen as Threat

BERN, Switzerland -- For centuries, this Alpine nation has successfully relied on a strict policy of political neutrality to insulate it from the wars, invasions and revolutions that have raged outside its borders. These days, a new threat has emerged: one from within.

As they have elsewhere in Europe, Islamic radicals are making inroads in Switzerland. Last month, Swiss officials announced the arrests of a dozen suspects who allegedly conspired to shoot down an Israeli airliner flying from Geneva to Tel Aviv. In a related case, a North African man has been charged with organizing a plot from Swiss soil to blow up the Spanish supreme court in Madrid.

For years, even after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States, Swiss officials assumed that their country was one of the last places Islamic radicals would look to attack. Long considered a slice of neutral territory in a world full of conflicts, Switzerland trades on its status as home to the International Committee of the Red Cross and other diplomatic institutions.

As the global jihad movement becomes more decentralized and fragmented, however, Swiss security officials are warning that their country could become a target.

In an intelligence report completed in May, the Swiss Federal Police reversed previous assessments that the domestic risk of terrorism was nearly nonexistent. The report concluded that Switzerland had become "a jihadi field of operation" and predicted that terrorist attacks were "an increasing possibility."

"It would be dishonest to say that these groups are ready to act in Europe but that Switzerland is an island and that these groups could not be active in Switzerland, too," Jean-Luc Vez, director of the federal police, said in an interview here in the Swiss capital. "It is very, very important for us to say this to the Swiss politicians and the Swiss people."

The changes in Switzerland mirror those in other smaller European nations that, until recently, didn't see themselves as likely targets for Islamic terrorists.

In Sweden, another country with a long history of neutrality, prosecutors last month convened a top-secret closed trial of three terrorism suspects in the southern city of Malmo. Authorities have not identified the suspects or disclosed any evidence. But Swedish media have reported that the arrests were made at the request of British counterterrorism investigators.

In Denmark, counterterrorism authorities say they remain on high alert after a Danish newspaper printed cartoons of the prophet Muhammad that spurred boycotts, death threats and violent protests in Islamic countries.

And in the Netherlands, the Dutch government has classified the risk of a terrorist attack as "substantial," a threat level proportionally higher than in the United States, where homeland security officials judge the risk as "elevated." The Dutch government established its threat-ranking system in November 2004, when an Islamic radical killed the Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh.

Like Denmark, the Netherlands has contributed troops and other support to U.S.-led military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq. But until the van Gogh killing, Dutch officials had played down the threat of terrorism at home.

Since then, the number of Islamic radicals in the country has increased, as has the number of fundamentalist imams who are seeking to recruit new followers, said Tjibbe Joustra, the Dutch national coordinator for counterterrorism. He said international conflicts such as the war in Iraq are fueling the problem, although the Netherlands has also been polarized over its difficulties in assimilating Muslim immigrants.

"I'm afraid we are seeing an increase in radicalization in the Netherlands," Joustra said in a telephone interview. "In their search for motivation and their search for reasons to radicalize, they are no longer looking so much at national issues as international ones."

Jacques Pitteloud, a former coordinator of the Swiss intelligence agencies, said that in the past Swiss officials were primarily concerned that outside radical networks might try to use the country as a logistical base to raise money or support operations elsewhere. Most terrorism suspects arrested or questioned after Sept. 11, 2001, were foreigners just passing through.

That has changed recently, he said. Most of the suspects in the Israeli airliner case, for example, are immigrants who were granted Swiss residency.

"We might be facing a new era in homegrown terrorism," said Pitteloud, now the director of the Center for International Security Policy, an arm of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. "We don't feel like we are a primary target, but in the end, Switzerland is a symbol of quite a lot of things that radical Islam hates." Officials worry about attacks on foreign embassies and institutions in the country.

An estimated 350,000 Muslims live in Switzerland, constituting about 5 percent of the population. Swiss officials said they have done a better job integrating foreigners into the population than other European countries and have fewer radical mosques and organizations.

But "we have seen early signs now of anti-Swiss propaganda on the Internet," Pitteloud said. "We have our fair share of radical Islamists, there is no doubt, many of whom we don't know what to do about because many of them are refugees and we can't just kick them out."

Swiss lawmakers are considering a proposal that would allow police and the domestic intelligence service to tap the phones of suspected radicals or access their computers, even if there is no evidence of criminal wrongdoing. A similar measure was rejected last year in the Swiss parliament.

Andreas Wenger, director of the Center for Security Studies at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, said the warnings from Swiss intelligence and security services have been slow to register.

"Part of the political spectrum in Switzerland still has the feeling that because we are neutral and not associated with great power politics, that we are less likely to become a target," Wenger said. "The public perception is behind other European countries, most definitely."

Vez, the federal police chief, said domestic spying restrictions have hurt Switzerland's ability to swap counterterrorism intelligence with its allies.

"The biggest problem has been the sharing of information with our partners in Europe," he said. "Intelligence-sharing functions like a market. 'If you want something from me, you have to give me something.' "

Switzerland effectively had to build a counterterrorism program from scratch after the Sept. 11 attacks. It keeps a national database of radical suspects, but the watch list is not easily accessible by many police agencies.

In October 2004, Spanish authorities announced that they had broken up a plot by a cell of Moroccan radicals to drive a truck bomb into the National Court building in Madrid. They identified the leader of the cell as Mohammed Achraf, 31, who had sought asylum in Switzerland and been jailed two months earlier in Zurich on minor charges.

Spanish authorities said that Achraf organized robberies in Switzerland and funneled cash to Madrid to finance the plot, and that he continued to plan the attack even while he was locked up in a Swiss jail.

Swiss officials said they didn't realize at first that Achraf, who used several identities, was a suspected radical or that he was under investigation in Spain. Achraf has since been extradited to Madrid. He was indicted in March along with 31 other defendants.

In June, Swiss prosecutors said Achraf had been in contact with a member of the cell that had "the serious intent" to shoot down the Israeli plane.

Investigators have released few details about the alleged plot, and it is not known whether it had progressed beyond the planning stages. Swiss and Israeli news media have reported that the Israeli airline El Al canceled flights from Geneva to Tel Aviv for a week in December 2005 after it was warned by Swiss counterterrorism officials.

Prosecutors said that the cell consisted of about a dozen members and that it committed robberies throughout the country and transferred money to other cells in Spain and France. Cell members in those countries were arrested about the same time as part of a coordinated international investigation.

Seven suspects in Switzerland are being held in preventive detention, while four others have been released, said Hansjuerg Mark Wiedmer, spokesman for the Swiss Attorney General's Office. None of the suspects has been publicly identified. Under Swiss law, they can be held indefinitely without facing formal charges since they represent a flight risk, Wiedmer said.

Hans Hofmann, chairman of the intelligence oversight committee in the Swiss parliament, said the arrests showed that the country was vulnerable.

"Swiss intelligence is realizing that you can't just sit back and cross your arms and say, 'We're not a target because we're a small country,' " he said. "Switzerland is no longer able to exclude itself from the rest of the world in the face of a globalized threat."

Special correspondents Shannon Smiley in Bern and Silke Lode in Berlin contributed to this report.

Contact Manuel Vider at mardoqueo_morde@yahoo.com

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 25, 2006.

This report called "Israel at War" comes from the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (www.ifcj.org/site/PageServer?pagename=Israel_War_Blog).

When rockets began raining down on Israel last week, The Fellowship went into action. Staff from our Israel office has been traveling through northern Israel to provide emergency assistance to the cities under attack and express solidarity with the Israeli people.

In each of the cities we've visited, the reaction and appreciation we've received has been extremely heartfelt and moving. Below we're posting regular updates from our Israel staff to give you a glimpse into every day life in Israel during a time of war and to let you know how your support has been helping Israel through this crisis.

  • Another trip north, part 4

    Michael from our Israel office writes:

    In another shelter we found a broad spectrum of Israeli society. Elderly Russian immigrants were playing cards. Native Israelis were sitting and talking. Children of course were doing what children do: playing, screaming and crying.

    The interesting thing was that despite the difficult conditions, the good feelings of the people for one another were evident. It must be maddening to be cooped up in closed quarters with the same people for two weeks, yet what we saw was great love among the group. Everyone leans upon and supports one another, and this unity helps them cope. One elderly woman had a message for us: "Am Yisrael Chai (The Nation of Israel lives)! These rockets are not going to defeat us!"

    Once again, we got such a warm welcome from these people. They were so grateful for our visit and the gifts we brought. They all recognize Rabbi Eckstein and the Fellowship, and they appreciate the support we give. He had to convince them that they are the real heroes, and that we are all privileged to help them in whatever way we can.

  • Another trip north, part 3

    Michael from our Israel office writes:

    From there we moved to the municipality "war room" where we met with the deputy mayor of the city. We were informed that because Carmiel is a new city, there is no problem with the number of shelters. The problem is supplying the basic food needs to an entire population of people who cannot go outside. The municipality must send dry food to shelters and deliver regular meals to the elderly who cannot leave their apartments. Food and fans for the shelters are the current urgent need.

    We then got back on our van to visit some shelters and to deliver food and water. During the ride we were informed that there is a one-minute warning siren sounded after katyusha rockets are fired, and that they are usually launched between 11 A.M. - 12 P.M. As we reached our destination, and were climbing out of the van, we suddenly heard a warning siren. For some unexplained reason we all sort of continued walking behind our municipality escorts in a fairly nonchalant manner. When they saw this, they shouted, "This isn't a game, run!"

    At that moment it truly hit home what was going on around us. We went down to the shelter where families and many children were staying, among them immigrants from Ethiopia and Romania. There were also 2 soldiers who explained that they go around from shelter to shelter, and stay for about 1/2 hour. They reassure the people and play with the children. Rabbi Eckstein sat down and played with the children as well. The people explained that they have been living inside for the last two weeks. They were extremely grateful for the message of support as well as for the food and water which we brought - and also for the air conditioners that were being installed as we arrived!

  • Another trip north, part 2

    Michael from our Israel office writes:

    The mayor of Carmiel was in an emergency meeting when we arrived. We were greeted by the spokesperson of the city as well as the Director of the Department of Social Services. Besides them and some city workers, the streets were empty. Everyone else has retreated to the safety of bomb shelters. They quickly brought us to meet with municipal security workers wearing the flak jackets which The Fellowship purchased in the first few days of the war after receiving an urgent request from the mayor. When katyusha rockets fall, these brave people have to go out to assess the damage. Rabbi Eckstein was met with enthusiastic smiles and thanks as they related the sense of safety and well being The Fellowship has given them as they perform their dangerous tasks.

    We were escorted to a room in which soldiers from the Home Front Command were receiving their daily briefing. These troops are charged with bringing food to the people who are forced to remain indoors. Rabbi Eckstein made a short statement thanking them for their hard work and courage, and let them know that they are not alone - they have the support and respect of hundreds of thousands of believing Christians. After he spoke, he received a standing ovation.

  • Another trip north, part 1

    Michael from our Israel office writes:

    The war in the North has been raging for more than weeks. Rabbi Eckstein and members of the Israel office recently went on a tour of some cities in the war zone.

    There were 3 reasons for these visits: 1) to see the situation on the ground; 2) to meet with the mayors and find out what their needs are at this stage of the war; and 3) to deliver food and offer encouragement to the people, letting them know that Christians in America are standing in support with them.

    Other than the very real threat of suicide bombers, which occupies a permanent place in the consciousness of all Israelis, life in Jerusalem, where The Fellowship is based, continues as normal. We don't see the daily reality of the war in the North. But we were about to.

    As we left the city at 8:30 A.M., the highway was full from rush hour traffic. It is about a 2 and 1/2 hour ride from Jerusalem to the city of Carmiel. After being on the road for about 2 hours, we suddenly realized that other than official vehicles, there were no longer any cars on the road. This quickly put us in the mindset of where we were going.

  • From Dvora, The Fellowship's Jerusalem office

    As you know, the situation in the North is very difficult. We're doing all we can in order to enable the mayors and heads of local councils of the cities and towns in the North to ease the lives of the people who have to stay in bomb shelters on a daily basis. As soon these events broke out, we went around to the areas of conflict, distributing financial aid in the names of our Christian friends, so that the people can buy food, diapers, equipment for the shelters, activity kits and games for children, fans, etc. All of the mayors thanked us, and all of them had warm words for The Fellowship.

    Rabbi Eckstein and I were interviewed on television, and we emphasized the aid which is coming from Christian supporters of Israel. We stressed that this aid, which is given because of the Christian belief in the Bible and the religious calling to help the Jewish people, is a constant, and that it is flowing even more heavily in

  • A trip to Haifa, part 2

    It's hard to describe just how hot a crowded shelter can be. In addition to the heat, there is tension, and a great deal of pent-up energy. These children know something is wrong they should be outside running around during their summer break. During our conversations with the student counselors, we were told that dealing with the tension and the fear of the unknown is their biggest challenge.

    The activity kits themselves are huge packages. On the top of each is a beautiful card noting that they are a gift from Yechiel and the IFCJ. The kits contain crayons, pastels, magic markers, playing cards, papers and activity books. As soon as they were opened the children started drawing, coloring, and playing. The mood in the room immediately changed from gloomy to cheerful. There were shouts of joy. When one of the journalists who accompanied us on the visit saw the children's reaction, she exclaimed, "They're acting as if Christmas has come early"!

    The beautiful thing about children is that they're pure and honest. They speak from the heart with no ulterior motives. The smiles and the thanks we got are something we'll never forget.

  • From Michael, Fellowship staff member in Jerusalem: A trip to Haifa

    Haifa, Israel's 3rd largest city, has been subjected to an unbearable barrage of katyusha rocket this past week. Several people were killed following a direct hit on a train depot. It's also home to Israel's major northern port. The port has been closed because of the rocket attacks, which is major blow to the local economy. But it remains an "attractive" target to terrorist rockets because of the dangerous industrial chemicals which are stored there. The potential for disaster hovers in the air.

    The first impression one gets upon entering the city is that of being in a ghost town. The streets are empty and businesses are closed. It's simply hard to reconcile expectations with reality. The streets should be bustling with children and activity -- this is summer vacation, after all.

    We headed straight to a meeting with Israel's Minister of Education, Prof. Yuli Tamir. Minister Tamir had requested that the IFCJ fund children's activity kits for use in the bomb shelters and secure rooms. We were then escorted to a huge secure room which is housing about 30 or more Ethiopian elementary school children between the ages of 6-12, as well as volunteer university students who are acting as their counselors.

  • Letter from an Israeli friend, part 4

    Yesterday I finished the third of three Jewish groups. It was a very busy and hard month. The buses were full. Two groups were from Reform and Conservative congregations. The itineraries were very full, every day till late. I learnt about the challenges of the Jewish congregations in America, and I met some older rabbis and some very young ones. Having the congregations come to Israel for a Jewish experience was a tremendous experience for all the people. I think that too often we Israelis do not appreciate the supreme effort that Jewish leadership is going through in the Diaspora, trying to give a full Jewish life. In Israel we take if for granted. We say we are Jewish 365 days a year. In the Diaspora it is so much harder.

    I went to several services all in Hebrew, very spiritual, very meaningful. Not the usual orthodox prayer but still good. I met some wonderful communities in Haifa. Even in Jerusalem one feels the influences of these movements. My daughter goes to one of their schools and we are pleased that she is learning respect for her religion. I also learnt from the rabbis-Jewish law, Talmud, the role of the synagogue...I hope these groups keep on coming. I am sure they will.

    So I have been very busy. I really hope that all the work does not disappear. I am pretty well booked. We will see and pray.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 25, 2006.


YNET, Israel's online newspaper, is making it possible for people all over the world to post a message of support for Israel.

If you would like to send a message of support that will be read all over Israel, click here.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Arutz-Sheva, July 25, 2006.












To Donate: Click here.

The Arutz-Sheva website address is www.IsraelNationalNews.com

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Posted by Sanda Abramovici, July 25, 2006.

This was written by Mark Steyn, a Canadian and US columnist. He is a regular contributor to The Australian's opinion page. He will address the Centre for Independent Studies in Sydney on August 14 and the Institute of Public Affairs in Melbourne on August 17. It appeared in Jewish World Review (jewishworldreview.com/0706/steyn072406.php3) July 24, 2006.

If only they had refused to indulge Arafat The myth that the Muslim world's problems are directly linked to the Palestinian question has gone up in flames, argues Mark Steyn.

A FEW years back, when folks talked airily about "the Middle East peace process" and "a two-state solution", I used to say that the trouble was the Palestinians saw a two-state solution as an interim stage en route to a one-state solution. I underestimated Islamist depravity. As we now see in Gaza and southern Lebanon, any two-state solution would be an interim stage en route to a no-state solution.

In one of the most admirably straightforward of Islamist declarations, Hussein Massawi, the Hezbollah leader behind the slaughter of US and French forces 20 years ago, put it this way:

"We are not fighting so that you will offer us something. We are fighting to eliminate you."

Swell. But suppose he got his way, what then? Suppose every last Jew in Israel were dead or fled, what would rise in place of the Zionist entity? It would be something like the Hamas-Hezbollah terror squats in Gaza and Lebanon writ large. Hamas won a landslide in the Palestinian elections, and Hezbollah similarly won formal control of key Lebanese cabinet ministries. But they're not Mussolini: they have no interest in making the trains run on time. And, to be honest, who can blame them?

If you're a big-time terrorist mastermind, it's frankly a bit of a bore to find yourself deputy under-secretary at the ministry of pensions, particularly when you're no good at it, and no matter how lavishly the European Union throws money at you, there never seems to be any in the kitty when it comes to making the payroll. So, like a business that has over-diversified, Hamas and Hezbollah retreated to their core activity: Jew-killing.

In Causeries du Lundi, Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve recalls a Parisian dramatist watching the revolutionary mob rampaging through the street below and beaming: "See my pageant passing!" That's how opportunist Arabs and indulgent Europeans looked on the intifada and the terrorists and the schoolgirl suicide bombers: as a kind of uber-authentic piece of performance art with which to torment the Jews and the Americans. They never paused to ask themselves: Hey, what if it doesn't stop there?

Well, about 30 years too late, they're asking it now. For the first quarter-century of Israel's existence, the Arab states fought more or less conventional wars against the Zionists and kept losing. So then they figured it was easier to anoint a terrorist movement and in 1974 declared Yasser Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organisation to be the "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people", which is quite a claim for an organisation then barely a decade old. Amazingly, the Arab League persuaded the UN, the EU, Bill Clinton and everyone else to go along with it and to treat the old monster as a head of state who lacked only a state to head.

It's true that many nationalist movements have found it convenient to adopt the guise of terrorists.

But, as the Palestinian movement descended from airline hijackings to the intifada to self-detonating in pizza parlours, it never occurred to its glamorous patrons to wonder if maybe this was, in fact, a terrorist movement conveniently adopting the guise of nationalism.

In 1971, in the lobby of the Cairo Sheraton, Palestinian terrorists shot Wasfi al-Tal, the prime minister of Jordan, at point-blank range. As he fell to the floor dying, one of his killers began drinking the blood gushing from his wounds. Doesn't that strike you as a little, um, overwrought? Three decades later, when bombs went off in Bali, killing hundreds of tourists plus local waiters and barmen, Bruce Haigh, a former Aussie diplomat in Indonesia, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, had no doubt where to put the blame. As he told Australia's Nine Network: "The root cause of this issue has been America's backing of Israel on Palestine."

Suppose this were true: that terrorists blew up Australian honeymooners and Scandinavian stoners in Balinese nightclubs because of "the Palestinian question". Doesn't this suggest that these people are, at a certain level, nuts? After all, there are plenty of Irish Republican Army sympathisers across the world (try making the Ulster Unionist case in a Boston bar), yet they never thought to protest against British rule in Northern Ireland by blowing up, say, German tourists in Thailand.

Yet the more the thin skein of Palestinian grievance was stretched to justify atrocities halfway around the world, the more the Arab League big-shot emirs and EU foreign ministers looked down from their windows and cooed, "See my parade passing!"

They've now belatedly realised they're at that stage in the creature feature where the monster has mutated into something bigger and crazier. Until the remarkably kinda-robust statement by the Group of Eight and the unprecedented denunciation of Hezbollah by the Arab League, the rule in any conflict in which Israel is involved - Israel v PLO, Israel v Lebanon, Israel v (Your Team Here) - is that the Jews are to blame. But Saudi-Egyptian-Jordanian opportunism on Palestine has caught up with them: it has finally dawned on them that a strategy of consciously avoiding resolution of the Palestinian question has helped deliver Gaza and Lebanon and Syria into the hands of a regime that's a far bigger threat to the Arab world than the Zionist entity.

Cairo and co grew so accustomed to whining about the Palestinian pseudo-crisis decade in, decade out, that it never occurred to them that they might face a real crisis one day: a Middle East dominated by an apocalyptic Iran and its local enforcers, in which Arab self-rule turns out to have been a mere interlude between the Ottoman sultans and the eternal eclipse of a Persian nuclear umbrella.

The Zionists got out of Gaza and it's now Talibanistan redux. The Zionists got out of Lebanon and the most powerful force in the country (with an ever-growing demographic advantage) are Iran's Shia enforcers. There haven't been any Zionists anywhere near Damascus in 60 years and Syria is in effect Iran's first Sunni Arab prison bitch. For the other regimes in the region, Gaza, Lebanon and Syria are dead states that have risen as vampires.

Meanwhile, Kofi Annan in a remarkable display of urgency (at least when compared with Sudan, Rwanda, Congo and others) is proposing apropos Israel and Hezbollah that UN peacekeepers go in to keep the peace not between two sovereign states but between a sovereign state and a usurper terrorist gang. Contemptible as he is, the secretary-general shows a shrewd understanding of the way the world is heading: already, non-state actors have more sophisticated rocketry than many EU nations; and if Iran has its way, its proxies will be implied nuclear powers. Maybe we should put them on the UN Security Council.

So, what is in reality Israel's first non-Arab war is a glimpse of the world the day after tomorrow: the EU and the Arab League won't quite spell it out but, to modify that Le Monde headline, they are all Jews now.

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Posted by Isi Leibler, July 25, 2006.

This war could have been avoided had we not continued to bury our heads in the sand as we watched the Katyusha missile infrastructures being built by Hizbullah on our northern border.

For over a year, Kassam rockets rained over us and although we threatened reprisals ad nauseam, all we did was bomb empty fields and abandoned buildings. History will surely now condemn the unilateral Gaza disengagement and the precipitous withdrawal from Lebanon as unmitigated disasters, both from the military standpoint as well as from the vantage of psychological warfare.

All we did was succeed admirably in convincing the jihadists that we lacked deterrent capabilities and were at the point of unraveling in terms of national morale. But this is not a time to indulge in recriminations. Today we must set aside our differences and unite behind our leaders, making them aware that if greater sacrifices are required in order to defeat the barbarians at our gate, they have our full support.

PRIME MINISTER Ehud Olmert is a civilian without military experience. And "peacenik" Minister of Defense Amir hardly radiates the charisma of a warrior.

But David Ben-Gurion, Levi Eshkol, and Menachem Begin also lacked military backgrounds but emerged as outstanding national leaders in war as in peace.

Besides, most Israelis of all political persuasions would agree that since the outbreak of hostilities, both Olmert and Peretz have performed in an exemplary manner and emerged as true national leaders. The prime minister's recent Knesset speech to the nation was Churchillian, and will go down in history as one of the most stirring calls to the nation from any Israeli leader.

Clearly the present campaign to root out Hizbullah has created a greater sense of Israeli unity than at any time since the Six Day War. Aside from a handful of fringe extremists and eccentric Ha'aretz op-ed writers, there is a genuine consensus that this is truly a classic case of a just war.

Our adversaries no longer even bother to go through the pretence that the conflict is related to land for peace. Hizbullah and Hamas, backed by the Iranians and Syrians, seek the elimination of Jewish sovereignty - nothing less.

WE ARE NOT attacking Lebanon. We are attacking Hizbullah, which has stuck itself like a leech on the Lebanese people. They are terrorists armed with lethal hi-tech weapons who believe they are sanctified to ravage our sovereign territory in order to kill and kidnap civilians and soldiers.

No other country could remain passive in the face of such provocations, combined with the daily launching of missiles on civilian population centers. By any terms these are acts of war. As Olmert put it in the Knesset, "No more!"

And whereas decent nations at war may seek to minimize casualties of innocent non-combatants, to relate to "proportionality" in this context can only be described as playing foul.

Playing foul are those repeating the perennial mantras of "cycles of violence" and spouting generalizations based on moral equivalency which fail to distinguish between aggressors and victims. Playing foul was Kofi Annan scolding us, and the UN Security Council resolution condemning Israel for "disproportionate use of military force" - a resolution which was only averted by the US veto. Playing foul were the Russians, the French and other Europeans demanding a halt to the "inflicting of suffering on innocent Lebanese civilians."

Playing foul was the EU President deploring the destruction of civilian infrastructure and condemning Israel's "unjustified air and sea blockade," even hinting at economic sanctions.

TO HIS CREDIT, President Bush stood by Israel from the outset, adamantly reiterating our right to defend ourselves and refusing to support a cease-fire which would have enabled Hizbullah to retreat and regroup in order to confront us again at a time of its choosing.

We should not be under any illusion that the hostile attitude displayed against us by much of the world will change overnight. But now, for the first time, even countries that until now displayed bias and applied double standards in judging us are following the American lead.

Perhaps recent events may finally be making some of the Europeans aware of the stark reality that they and we Israelis are on the same side, on the front lines facing the authentic cut-throat jihadists, the advance guards of Islamic fundamentalism seeking to conquer the world and transform it into a caliphate.

The first major breakthrough came with the statement of the G8. For the first time Russia and France endorsed a resolution which clearly distinguished between the aggressor and victim. Hopefully it may represent the turning point of a growing realization that the only real beneficiaries from this violent upheaval are the Iranians, who are orchestrating the conflict to promote their own objectives.

THE PEOPLE of Israel are already displaying qualities of fortitude and determination that their enemies mistakenly believed had been eroded by soft living and consumerism.

Now is the time for us to reinforce our unity and national consensus. So long as the government remains firm on its objectives - the dismantling of Hizbullah and the return of the hostages - we are entitled to expect our politicians to set aside their differences.

Now is the time to demonstrate our united resolve, with leading opposition politicians, including Binyamin Netanyahu speaking to the world, with one voice in support of the efforts of our prime minister.

Now is the time to promote the most talented and articulate Israelis to present our case to the world, even if that requires some of the currently ensconced bureaucrats to temporarily step aside.

Now is also the time to repair our relationship with Diaspora Jewry and welcome their input into the war of ideas in which we have been losing ground over these past years by being falsely portrayed as brutal occupiers.

This could represent the beginning of a campaign to reverse the global tide of media demonization and bias confronting us.

HISTORY MAY make us grateful that the Hizbullah offensive took place now rather than in a few years' time, when the price in blood would undoubtedly be much higher. Our challenge is to guarantee that the bloodshed and the sacrifices our people are currently making will not be in vain and will result in a more secure Israel. That means finishing the job, as Prime Minister Olmert has promised to do

The writer chairs the Diaspora-Israel Relations Committee of the Jerusalem Centre for Public Affairs and is a veteran international Jewish leader. Contact him at ileibler@netvision.net.il

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Posted by Fern Sidman, July 25, 2006.

While Israel is engaged in heavy fighting with Hezbollah terrorists on the northern front and Hamas terrorists on its southern front, it would appear that Israel's proverbial nemesis, better known as the media, has opened a third front with its incessant assaults on Israel.

While the media may not be launching Katyusha or Kassam rockets aimed at Israeli cities, the rockets that the media launches are instrumental in degrading Israel in the war of public opinion. Case in point would be the drastic difference in the content and modality of reporting between the two major cable networks, CNN and Fox News.

To the average viewer, it would appear that CNN and Fox are reporting the news from two different planets. While it is true that the Ted Turner owned CNN, has its own left wing agenda along with the perfunctory anti-Israel bias that goes with that territory, and Roger Ailes' Fox News has a more conservative, pro-Republican platform, the stark and extreme contrasts cannot be missed. To state that their coverage of the current war between Israel, Hezbollah and Hamas is diametrically opposed would be a gross understatement.

One need only press the button on their television remotes for a period of an hour or so, to gain tremendous insight into the world of media propaganda, distortions and lies. For a truly mercurial experience, just spend an evening with Anderson Cooper and Larry King of CNN and then visit with Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly over at Fox.

The story according to CNN is the following: Israel is murdering Lebanese children and civilians en masse, Israel is not making a dent in Hezbollah's power, Israel is not forthcoming in opening up a corridor for humanitarian assistance to Lebanon, Israel is causing a refugee crisis amongst the Lebanese population, Israel is using phosphorus in its weaponry, Israel refuses to agree to a cease fire, Israel's retaliation against Hezbollah has been "disproportionate", Israel refuses to engage in negotiations with Hezbollah over a prisoner exchange. CNN's conclusion is: World opinion will turn against Israel because of its actions. One can only scratch their heads and ask, is there a pattern developing here???

As we watch Anderson Cooper taking us for tours of hospitals in Lebanon showing the burnt and mangled faces of Lebanese children, while giving platforms to Hezbollah supporters who spew forth their party line which includes accusations against Israel for starting this conflict by occupying Palestine, to scared and trapped Americans who blame Israel for the destruction of Beirut. Repetitive images of Israeli tanks and gun ships shooting missiles into Lebanon fill our screens ad infinitum, while there is never a image of a Hezbollah terrorist shooting a Katyusha rocket into Israel.

If this weren't enough one sided and biased journalism, we are also treated to an hour of Larry King, who gives more than ample time to Hezbollah journalists, Syrian ambassadors, and a whole host of other Israel bashers. King allows them to make hate filled speeches riddled with inaccuracies and grandiose distortions about Israel and her role in this current conflict, while never challenging them in any kind of meaningful and significant manner.

In marked contrast to CNN's coverage of the war, there is a definitely a more "fair and balanced" coverage on Fox News. While far from being totally fair and balanced Fox News takes pains in researching new details from their reporters in the Middle East and presenting a more even handed account of the situation in Israel.

From Sean Hannity to Bill O'Reilly to Greta Van Susteren to Sheppard Smith, one can see that these journalists are dedicated to digging out the truth by ask searing questions concerning the facts of the situation, which are so very often buried under the propaganda and lies of Hezbollah and other Arab spokesmen who are allowed lengthy platforms for their vituperative and vitriolic rhetoric against Israel.

There is no question that Fox News is far from perfect and has on more than one occasion fallen prey to the CNN and New York Times syndrome of making Israel the scapegoat for the world's problems, but by in large, Fox has made a concerted effort, thus far, to reporting the news with a high degree of accuracy.

That is all that we can ask from the media. In general, they always have been instrumental in generating negative feelings towards Israel and have been the biggest asset of the cause of Hamas and Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations in the region. Right now, they represent the third front that Israel must contend with. An enemy that is funded not by regimes predicated on terror but on corporate dollars. It is an enemy that never runs out of rockets or mortars or missiles, for their verbal missiles and subliminal messages are in infinite abundance and these fatal weapons shape a public image of Israel that is more deadly than rockets because they pervade the hearts and minds of their viewers.

For the Jewish people, this is an old story. Since Guttenberg invented his first printing press in the 1600s, words and thoughts have always been published against Jews. The media of today bares little difference to its more in-your-face predecessors. While the facts may be different, today's media is just re-hashing the same kind of Israel hating messages that is has done for close to six decades.

The media is a persistent and resilient foe, almost an implacable one, yet despite this most formidable enemy, we have borne witness to our continued existence as a nation. As with the Greeks, Romans, Crusaders, the Turks, the Nazis, the British, the Soviet Union, the PLO, Hamas and Hezbollah and all the other enemies that I may have forgotten to list, those who sought to vanquish and eradicate the Jewish nation and the Land of Israel, we tell them and the media that they have not succeeded in our destruction and with G-d's help they never will.

Anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism are one in the same and they are a permanent part of and endemic to our society. With G-d's help, we will deal with the media as we have with our other enemies and may we take comfort in the fact that we are a people who fears and obeys only the Almighty G-d of Israel and does not fear the words of mortal enemies. World opinion will always be against the Jewish nation, and fearing it and cowering over the words and threats of world leaders is a futile exercise and a colossal waste of precious time.

Let us utilize our precious time in appealing to the Holy One Blessed Be He, who girds His nation Israel with strength, crowns His nation Israel in glory and gives strength to His weary nation. For in the end, the media is just another enemy in a huge litany of enemies. Let us turn to Hashem Yisborach at this critical juncture in time, for it is He who marches into battle with us and it is He who will conquer our enemies, if we only recognize His dominion and His glory.

And to the media, we say, just take your place on the back of a very long line. You're not our first enemy and you won't be our last.

May we our prayers reach the Almighty G-d of Israel and may we be zoche to the see our redemption, speedily in our days.

Contact Fern Sidman by email at ariellah@aol.com

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Posted by Dr. Jerome S. Kaufman, July 25, 2006.

If one wants to be guaranteed a Pro-Arab opinion just have as your guest, Edward Djerian, former ambassador to Syria who spent his political career in the State Department favoring the Arab position against Israel.

What prompted this discussion is Djerian's recent oft-repeated supposedly profound Arab propaganda statement - "There is no military solution in the Middle East." That is, of course, because thank G-d, Israel, given free rein, would conceivably win any military solution, resoundingly defeat their enemies and obtain some genuine peace in the region providing they were not once again, forced to return territory vital to their and the world's security. It also ignores the fact that this has never been American policy. In fact quite the opposite is used and found to be successful - defeat your enemies to the point of surrender and then dictate a peace that would be disrupted at the enemy's great peril.

Not coincidentally Djerian, along with Martin Indyk, both examples of the classic State Department school favoring close ties to Arab states, are now part of the Baker Institute in Houston Texas, founded by James Baker, former Secretary of State who worked under President George Bush during the first Gulf War. You will remember it was he who pressured Israel to absorb over 30 missiles fired deliberately into Israel by Saddam Hussein. This faulty strategy of enablement set the groundwork allowing Hussein to remain in power and has directly resulted in the current Iraqi debacle that has fallen upon the shoulders of George Baker's son, President GW Bush.

Other luminaries of the time and same political persuasion like Dennis Ross have also assumed the mantle of network Middle East experts but cleverly changed their chameleon-like political colors depending upon how much money they can make with public speeches and selling books while attempting to regain political power under any new administration.

Hopefully the media will become more aware of who they are interviewing as "experts" and not hire these people, that is unless their political bias fits in with the that of the involved media.

So, what else is new?

Jerome S. Kaufman is National Secretary of the Zionist Organization of America. and host the Israel Commentary website (http://www.israel-commentary.org).

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Posted by Daniel J. Teeboom, July 25, 2006.

Through combination of Western appeasement of Islamic Fundamentalism and political pressure on the Jewish State, peace in the Middle East is no longer possible.

A Dutch parliamentary commission decided in November 2004, right before Theo Van Gogh was murdered, to ban Hezbollah as a terrorist organisation. This would have far reaching results for Hezbollah in Europe, and its relationship with the EU. Bert Koenders, an expert for foreign affairs for the Dutch Labour party, made it known how unhappy[1] he was with this decision. According to him it would have been much better to involve[2] Hezbollah in Lebanese politics, instead of banning it. A rapport of the Dutch Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR),[3] which was published about a year and a half later, reached a similar conclusion: Do not fight the Islamic terror organisations, but give them political power and money instead. As a result, the theory goes, they will become more moderate. The so called experts thought the same after the election victory of Hamas, which according to them would surely force Hamas to abandon its radical ideology. The reality was of course different, but most experts on the Middle East here in Europe, do not let their opinions be influenced by something as trivial as that. Nothing came of Hezbollah ban, the party of Allah is still recognized by the EU as a legitimate Lebanese party. Albeit a party with an army, 10.000 rockets and 100 million dollars of aid per year from Iran.[4] Obviously it was not Hezbollah that got involved in Lebanese politics, but Lebanon which got involved with the politics of Hezbollah.

Many European leaders complain that Israel's response to the kidnappings is far from proportionate. They could well be right because Israel has no other option except to strike with full force. The Israeli's might have won many wars but through a combination of Western pressure and Islamic terrorism, those victories have lost their value. Israel appeared invincible after the Six Day War, and the Yom Kippur war more or less confirmed this notion. The largest and most powerful Arab country, did not decide to make peace because of its love for Israeli's. It agreed to make peace because it could not defeat Israel militarily, nor did it have any hope to force Israel's hand through a combination of diplomacy and terror. The Camp David accords were signed at a time when Israel was still supported by the entire Western world. This has now changed. A country which is not supported by what should have been its natural allies, appears weak and vulnerable. Would Egypt have agreed to a peace deal had it known that it could get the entire Sinai back through terrorism? The flow of condemnations from the UN and the constant pressure from the EU, give Muslims the hope that Israel can be defeated through a combination of political manipulation and violence. It is this knowledge that attracts recruits for Hamas and Hezbollah. Not despair but hope is the reason why the violence never ends. Nobody blows himself up for a compromise.

Israel planned to trade most of the the occupied territories for peace. But terrorism combined with international pressure has forced Israel to abandon this plan and give up land unilaterally. As long as Israel keeps land occupied it is losing international support, and eventually will risk sanctions. The retreats from Gaza and South-Lebanon have demonstrated that giving up land leads to war, while the Oslo-peace accords have shown that negotiating with terrorists results in the same. Terrorists are not interested in peace - there would be no need for terrorism if they were - and therefore feel no need to keep their promises. Many people in Israel already knew this, which explains the furious opposition to negotiations with the PLO in the early 1990ies. It is very bitter that Israel lost so much European support after agreeing to negotiate with the PLO on the insistence of the EU.

Israel is back where it started in 1948. Peace is impossible and negotiations lead to nowhere. What is left is only the use of force. But this is not without problems either. Israel is expected to fight without killing and this is clearly not possible. Muslim fundamentalists are simply not impressed by blowing up empty buildings. Neither do they care if their activities ruin the country from which they operate. Anyway they get their money from Iran. Basically Israel will need to kill a lot of Hezbollah terrorists in order to win this conflict, but the West will not allow this. Doing nothing would surely have been fatal, but this counter offensive in Lebanon could be very risky indeed. If Israel cannot, or is not allowed to, break Hezbollah then the North of Israel, including Haifa, might suffer missile attacks for a long time to come. I am sure that terrorists in the West-Bank are taking notice as well. Israel might very soon be confronted with a situation where missiles strike anywhere in the country at anytime.

It is possible that the people who work on the Dutch Scientific Council for Government Policy and folks like Bert Koenders[5] are actually very stupid. It is possible, though very unlikely. But why else would they want to give a Taliban like organisation the chance to turn Lebanon into an Afghanistan clone? Why do they invest so much effort to legitimize extremely violent and anti-Semitic organisations? Are they anti-Semites themselves? I prefer to resist this conclusion. But I do think that these people and their views are telling us something about the mind of another schemer, a man who tried to neutralize the terrorists of his time by also giving in to their demands. This man was Franz Von Papen and his 'brilliant' plan to moderate the extremists, was to ask Hitler to become chancellor of Germany. We all know what happened as a result of that. Franz Von Papen surely never intended for his actions to lead to a Second World War. Nevertheless it did and he was forced to give accountability for his actions in front of a court of law. Bert Koenders and the people of the Scientific Council for Government Policy are partly responsible for this war. When will they be held accountable?

1. frontpage.fok.nl/nieuws.fok/47879

2. www.marijelaffeber.nl/verslag%20libanon%20bijeenkomst.htm

3. www.wrr.nl/english/content.jsp?objectid=3496

4. www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/04/18/60minutes/main550000.shtml

5. www.parlement.com/9291000/biof/02611

Contact Daniel Teeboom at d.j.teeboom@orange.nl or go to his website: www.hetvrijevolk.com

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Posted by Professor Eugene Narrett, July 24, 2006.

Dror Vanunu writes: "This is the translation of a letter I got today."

Friends and family members are being injured and killed
Some of us are without a roof on our heads.
I closed my business since the beginning of the battle and I don't know what will happen.
We are wandering between family and good people.
Our family life has been impaired.
I never thought that I, a Haifa resident for 30 years, would be a refugee in my own land.
Every thing sound so familiar from the close past.

During 5 years you coped with bombs -- and I didn't care
You buried family and friends -- and I was indifferent
You found yourselves without a home, like that and you never had someone that listened to you.
Even when you came to visit me to my house, to explain, to convince, to share your feelings with me -- I refused to listen to you.
It has already been a week. I am out of my house, without my regular routine, it is very hard to me -- but the empathy, the support, and people identifying with our plight helped me go on.
You don't even have that.
You -- In guest houses, hotels and even in tents -- It's not easy to say: "Who cares?!"

People from Gush Katif and the Shomron!
Forgive me!
Forgive us for letting you on your own.
Forgive us for not understanding you.
I am not a religious man, and not a mystic person.
But we cannot ignore the deep relation
Between my attitude towards you
And the price that I am paying now for my understanding.

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Posted by Mark A. Thomas, July 24, 2006.
I believe the people of Israel are honorable people. I pray for only God's very best in this difficult time. Many of us in America are behind Israel 100%.

Best Regards to you all and those that work on your web site.


Contact Mark Thomas at MAThomas@TampaBay.RR.com

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 24, 2006.

Whether you are a Democrat or Republican, I ask you to do what is right-- defend Israel, who was attacked without provocation by a force dedicated to destroying it and annihialting all Jews--completing with Hitler did not do.

Contact the White House and Secy Rice with messages of appreciation and continued support.

Thank you.

A quick note -- the following info from Britain is most instructive -- I am sure it says it all. On Monday, after fighting that has killed hundreds of civilians, Menzies Campbell, the leader of Britain's opposition Liberal Democrats asked Prime Minister Tony Blair to suspend arms exports to Israel.

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has said, "attacks in Lebanon are inflicting collective punishment on the Lebanese people," and the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator has described attacks on Beirut as a violation of humanitarian law," Campbell wrote.

What we must do?

We must launch an immediate counter offensive.

We remind Bush what happened to have caused the crisis and we thank President Bush and Sec. Rice for their stunning and courageous support for Israel under the growing international pressure.

Your help is helping Israel.

Copy of message below; write, send and forward to your list.

President Bush Fax: 202-456-2461
President Bush: president@whitehouse.gov
White House: Comments: 202-456-1111 Switchboard: 202-456-1414

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
E-mail: comments@whitehouse.gov
Fax: 202-456-2461

http://contact-us.state.gov/cgi-bin/state.cfg/php/enduser/ ask.php?p_sid=5zUxoldi

July 24, 2006

To: President George Bush

Fax: 202-456-2461
(202) 456-1111

Dear President Bush:

The barrage of rocket attacks on Israel continues; Israel's soldiers were kidnapped, 2,300 rockets in 11 days upon the North of Israel, civilians are targeted each day for months on end, nearly 880,000 Israelis are now living in bunkers or safety rooms, the devastation and destruction of Israel northern economy is growing; all because Israel was, once again, attacked by its neighboring enemy, this time Lebanon and Hezbollah.

Like never before, Israel is fighting for its existence, ducking and diving rockets and missiles of all sorts falling indiscriminately anywhere and everywhere.

President Bush, no matter how large is our gratitude, when the entire world has, once again, turned against Israel, we would like thank you one more time for your firm support for Israel, fighting for its existence.

Your courageous steadfast is blessed by all the children of Israel, Jews and Israelis alike.

God Bless you,

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Sandy Rosen-Hazen, July 24, 2006.

A few personal notes before the latest WAR news......

To Julie & others who've asked how I can support Pres. Bush:

Even with the closest family members and the very dearest of friends, we often must "agree to disagree" about some things!!!!

In the case of Pres. Bush, I respect and admire him, albeit there are 3 things about which I strongly disagree:

1) Same-sex marriage (which allows for equality for all and does NOT threaten heterosexual marriage);
2) Abortion (although I personally do not approve of abortion, I do advocate a woman's right to choose);
3) Stem-cell research (which I believe can save many lives)!!!!

Note: These are all far out-weighed by my total agreement with his extremely great efforts in his fight to end world-wide terrorism!!!!

Further answers to questions about my personal opinions on these matters can be viewed on my Web Site & I hope you'll go there to read them!!!!

Despite whatever you are hearing/seeing in the Media, what I've written to many of you, seperately, is STILL true....so I repeat: It is amazingly hard to concentrate on anything right now, with the incessant sounds of jet fighter planes overhead and the constant BOOMS from tank fire and bombs falling along the northern border, SO close to home.....we can actually hear all the bombs landing in Beirut, not to mention ALL those which are landing here in Safed!!!! The situation here is a real MESS.....fighting on TWO ends of the country!!!!

Meanwhile, I hope you are somewhere safe, ie: IF anyplace in the world is really "safe"!!!!

Love always,
And, now for the Update.....

Below my comments are in square brackets -- []

Editor's Note: Sandy Hazen-Rosen's earlier "Jewish-Israel News WAR hits Safad" can be read below.

[If this guy was American, he'd probably be a Democrat.....just my personal opinion, but he IS a "Liberal Democrat" in Eng!!!!]

British politician: Suspend arms exports to Israel:
By Associated Press -- Jul. 24, 2006 18:16

Menzies Campbell, the leader of Britain's opposition Liberal Democrats on Monday asked Prime Minister Tony Blair to suspend arms exports to Israel after fighting that has killed hundreds of civilians.

"[UN Secretary-General] Kofi Annan has said attacks in Lebanon are inflicting collective punishment on the Lebanese people [But, of course, Kofi Annan never bothers to consider Israel's casualties!!!!] and the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator has described attacks on Beirut as a violation of humanitarian law," Campbell wrote. [And, what does he call their terrorist attacks on our innocent civilians?!?!]

"The Government must now comply with its own arms export rules and institute an immediate suspension of all UK arms exports to Israel," he added. There was no immediate response from Blair's office.


Katyushas can't stop a homey Safed Shabbat dinner:
By Jeremy Last -- Jerusalem Post -- July 23, 2006

The summer is usually the busiest season in Safed. But for the second Shabbat in a row, this ancient, spiritual city was nearly empty. The constant Hizbullah bombardment has scared away an estimated 75 percent of the population, with most apartments left unoccupied. There was a strange, eerie quiet in the streets which tend to be full of the chatter of tourists and locals. There were also mixed feelings among those who have stayed.

Breslav Chassid Yonatan Lipshutz invited a number of his friends who had decided to remain in Safed to his apartment in the Old City for Friday night dinner.

"I've thought about leaving here many times over the last week and a half," the 46-year-old father of eight said as he munched on a piece of roast chicken. "On Tuesday or Wednesday when I was walking home from shul with my youngest son, my seven-year-old, and we heard a Katyusha land near by, he shook - once, and then again.

"Right there I said we have to get out of here. Am I a meshugana? Even my rabbi has left," Lipshutz explained. "But it's not so easy when you are a family of 12 Where would we go? "I was planning to leave today [Friday], at least for Shabbat, but something made me decide to stay," he explained.

He was definitely not in the majority. There were clearly many spare seats during the Kabbalat Shabbat service in the town's opulent Breslav synagogue, which is usually so packed on Friday night that it is difficult to even find any standing room.

Sitting round the dinner table were other local residents. Most have made aliya from the US or England, and have lived in the city for more than a decade.

Avraham explained how he had been constantly receiving phone calls and e-mails from family and friends around the world asking how he was doing and why he hadn't left already. "We're holding the fort here, keeping the minyanim going," he said.

Everyone at the table spoke of their respect for the few local shopkeepers who had braved the rocket attacks and stayed open during the last 10 days since the Katyushas began raining down. Apart from a couple of groceries, two supermarkets and two bakeries, few businesses have continued to serve their rapidly depleting customer base.

But the apparent difficulty in obtaining regular groceries did not seem to have affected Lipshutz's wife Talya's ability to make a sumptuous Friday night meal. The guests enjoyed two different types of challah, gefilte fish, roast chicken and roast potatoes.

One could have been mistaken for thinking this was a regular Shabbat, but for the conversation, which inevitably centered on the situation in the North and how each of the residents have coped with the sudden change in circumstances.

"It's amazing how quickly everyone left," said Mordechai, a retired former taxi-driver who moved to Israel from London 40 years ago and has lived in Safed for more than a decade. "I'm not worried about the situation," he added. Each of the guests had their own story, and as the wine, whisky and beer flowed, so did the conversation.

Shlomo told how he lived in Gush Katif in the Gaza Strip for four months before it was evacuated and moved to Safed from Jerusalem last week because he felt a strange pull to join Jews who were in danger. "It's funny how when we were in Gush Katif people always spoke of 'The North' as the area you went to get away from the rockets," he said.

Early Saturday morning, the constant thud of Israeli shells being fired at Lebanon could be heard. Air raid sirens were sounded a number of times throughout the day. At around 1:20 p.m. there were shudders as two or three Katyushas landed somewhere in the city.

But guest house owner Rina Kuby was undeterred. "I'm not scared any more," she said. "The first time, when one landed in the college round the corner it was a bit of a shock. But now I am used to it. "My cousins in Jerusalem keep asking me to come and stay with them, and my daughter has left with her children. But I'm going to stay here."

Rina's is one of the only places where any brave visitors to Safed can find a spare room to rent. "Nearly all the hotels around here have closed. Their owners have gone away, - to Tel Aviv, Jerusalem," she said. "But I've lived here in Safed all my life. I don't want to leave."

Rina explained how her neighbors left when the fighting started last Thursday but came back a few days ago, after hearing that thieves have been looting the empty houses and shops.

"This is the worst it's been since the War of Independence in 1948," she said. "I just hope it stops soon because I want life to get back to normal."


From HonestReporting, July 24, 2006.....

To our friends:Here in Israel, we've now entered our 13th day of this war. And contrary to most media reports, we are fighting on 3 fronts - a huge demand on a small country's army.

The entire North is being bombarded by over 150 missiles on average every day. 1 million people are still confined to their shelters and secure rooms or have been dislocated from their homes and jobs.

The South continues to sustain daily missile attacks. And the level of suicide bombing and terror attempts [the third front] has increased dramatically in the rest of the country. Everyone is on edge and wondering how long we can bear this pressure.

The 4th front is you and us. As time goes on, Israel will experience more and more international pressure to give up on its efforts to destroy Hezbollah and Hamas' armed threat. Israel needs world support to finish the job it has begun. That is the consensus across the board here. We thank you for your support. Joe Hyams, International Director HonestReporting http://www.honestreporting.com/


Israel Under Fire: A look at some of the myths and facts following Hezbollah's attack on Israel
From HonestReporting

Israeli military operations in Lebanon are taking place in response to an unprovoked border attack which left 8 Israeli soldiers dead and two kidnapped by the Hezbollah. Since then many more Israelis have been wounded and killed by over 700 Katyusha missiles and mortars that have rained down on Israel's northern cities, including as far south as Haifa and Tiberias. Israel is exercising her legitimate right to self-defense.


Myth - "Israel's response is disproportionate."

Fact - The definition of a "disproportionate" response is a subjective one. The question that could be asked of any other country in the world is simply: "What would you do in the same situation?" When protecting its citizens, exercising the right to self-defense and responding to missile attacks over a recognized border, most countries would respond in a similar manner. After all, how many Israelis need to die before the world believes that Israeli responses are proportionate?

Any civilian casualties in a conflict are, of course, tragic and regrettable. Civilians on both sides are suffering. However, Israeli air strikes on Lebanon are not intended to kill civilians, unlike the hundreds of Hezbollah missiles that are targeted specifically at Israeli civilians who have been forced into bomb shelters for their own safety. Israel has even dropped leaflets on Beirut suburbs calling on civilians to stay away from Hezbollah strongholds to avoid being caught up in the fighting.

Israel has also been criticized for targeting Lebanese infrastructure such as the Beirut airport. However, it is also interesting to note what has not been targeted. For example, while the airport runway was bombed, other vital installations such as the control tower were left untouched and Lebanese civilian airliners were allowed to fly to safety. Transport hubs and bridges have been targeted in order to prevent Hezbollah moving the kidnapped Israeli soldiers deeper into Lebanon and possibly even as far as Iran, as well as to prevent the terrorist organization being re-supplied with arms from Iran and elsewhere.

Many of Hezbollah's facilities and missile launch sites are located near residential areas, such as the suburbs of southern Beirut. Terrorists hide within the civilian population and use this population as a shield. Israel's priority is to strike at the Hezbollah terrorist infrastructure that has been allowed to develop in Lebanon.

Israel has, so far, avoided initiating a major ground offensive into Lebanese territory and has barely used a fraction of the firepower available to the IDF.

Myth - "Lebanon bears no responsibility for the actions of Hezbollah."

Fact - UN Security Council Resolution 1559 of September 2004, which referred back to Resolution 425, called "upon all remaining foreign forces to withdraw from Lebanon"; "for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias"; and supported "the extension of the control of the Government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory".

Syria eventually complied with 1559 and removed its occupying forces. However, the Lebanese government has not disarmed Hezbollah nor has it sent its armed forces to secure southern Lebanon and the border with Israel.

In addition, Hezbollah is actually part of the Lebanese government, which contains two Hezbollah members in the Cabinet. The Lebanese government, therefore, cannot abstain from responsibility for the actions of a part of its own leadership.

Myth - "Hezbollah is an indigenous Lebanese 'resistance' organization."

Fact - According to the Council on Foreign Relations, the Hezbollah is a Lebanese umbrella organization of radical Islamic Shiite groups and organizations. It opposes the West, seeks to create a Muslim fundamentalist state modeled on Iran, and is a bitter foe of Israel. Hezbollah, whose name means "party of God," is a terrorist group believed responsible for nearly 200 attacks since 1982 that have killed more than 800 people. Hezbollah and its affiliates have planned or been linked to a lengthy series of terrorist attacks against the United States, Israel, and other Western targets. These attacks include:

** a series of kidnappings of Westerners in Lebanon, including several Americans, in the 1980s;
** the suicide truck bombings that killed more than 200 U.S. Marines at their barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1983;
** the 1985 hijacking of TWA flight 847, which featured the famous footage of the plane's pilot leaning out of the cockpit with a gun to his head;
** and two major 1990s attacks on Jewish targets in Argentina - the 1992 bombing of the Israeli Embassy (killing twenty-nine) and the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center (killing ninety-five).

In addition, Hezbollah is sponsored, funded and armed by Iran and Syria who use the organization as a proxy to fight Israel and to destabilize the region. Hezbollah is designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the US State Department.

For more information on Hezbollah, see the following sources:

Anti-Defamation League
Institute for Counter-Terrorism
Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Myth - "Outside actors such as Iran are not fuelling the crisis."

Fact - A number of analysts have suggested that the timing of the Hezbollah operation is no coincidence, occurring just prior to the G8 Summit in St. Petersburg. The G8 was expected to concentrate heavily on Iran's refusal to comply with demands to curtail its nuclear program. A wider Mideast crisis, provoked by Iran's Hezbollah proxies, has now moved to the top of the G8 agenda, thus relieving some of the pressure on Iran.

In addition, Iranian fingerprints are to be found in the current conflict. The Katyusha missiles that are currently raining down on the north of Israel are supplied by Iran. An Israeli Naval vessel was also struck by an Iranian-made C802 missile, killing four sailors.

Myth - "Israel continues to occupy Lebanese land, specifically the Shebaa Farms area."

Fact - On May 24, 2000, Israel completed the unilateral withdrawal of all IDF forces from southern Lebanon, in accordance with Israeli government decisions and UN Security Council Resolution 425, ending an 18-year presence there.

On June 18, 2000, the UN Security Council endorsed the Secretary-General's conclusion that, as of 16 June, Israel had withdrawn its forces from Lebanon in accordance with Resolution 425.

As explained by Israel's Foreign Ministry, the Shebaa Farms area is not, and should not be, considered disputed territory - its status was clarified by a number of United Nations statements following the withdrawal of Israel forces from Lebanon in May 2000.

The United Nations views the Shebaa Farms area as Syrian territory. Therefore, UN Security Council Resolution 425 - which concerns Lebanon - does not require Israel to withdraw from this area.

While Lebanon claims to be the owner of the Shebaa Farms area, the UN has encouraged the Lebanese and Syrians to negotiate between themselves as to who is the rightful owner. If Syria were to cede ownership of the area to Lebanon, then it is probable that Israel and the UN would then reconsider the status of the territory. In the meantime, the issue of the Shebaa Farms is used simply as an excuse for the Hezbollah to maintain itself as an armed force in the region.

Myth - "Arab prisoners held in Israeli jails were kidnapped from Lebanese soil and should be released."

Fact - Some Lebanese and other Arab spokespeople have defended Hezbollah's actions as a legitimate form of "resistance" aimed at securing the release of Lebanese prisoners held in Israeli jails from the period of Israel's presence in its southern Lebanon security zone. The prisoner whom Hezbollah is demanding, above all others, be released, is Samir Kuntar, jailed in Israel since a 1979 attack in the northern Israeli town of Nahariyah, in which he entered an apartment and murdered three family members and an Israeli police officer.

Kuntar is quite simply a terrorist and a murderer who committed a terrible atrocity on Israeli soil. Those prisoners held in Israeli jails captured during Israel's stay in southern Lebanon are, likewise, held for terrorist offences and due to the inherent risk that they will return to their previous activities.


Israel's next war has begun, Yossi Klein Halevi, New Republic
The Nation of Hezbollah, Megan K. Stack and Rania Abouzeid, LA Times
Necessary Steps for Israel, Michael Oren, Washington Post
Israeli crisis is a smokescreen for Iran's nuclear ambitions, Con Coughlin, Daily Telegraph
States of Terror, Editorial, Wall Street Journal
Terror as Statecraft, Editorial, Chicago Tribune
Mideast Madness, Editorial, Houston Chronicle


Sleeper Hizbullah cells activated:
By Yaakov Katz -- Jerusalem Post -- July 23, 2006 23:36

Hizbullah "sleeper" terror cells set up outside Lebanon with Iranian assistance have been put on standby The Jerusalem Post learned on Sunday, and are likely planning attacks against Jewish and Israeli targets throughout the world.

The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) confirmed to the Post Sunday night that it had instructed embassies, consulates and Jewish institutions it was responsible for abroad to raise their level of awareness in light of the conflict in the North.

The assumption within Military Intelligence is that Hizbullah would only attack targets abroad if it felt pushed into a corner. According to this thinking, the Islamist group hesitates to carry out such attacks because it does not want to be associated with Global Jihad and al-Qaida.

Hizbullah has attacked Jewish and Israeli targets abroad in the past. The organization is believed to have been behind the attack on the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 during which a suicide bomber drove a pick-up truck filled with explosives into the building, killing 29 people and wounding 242, following Israel's assassination of the group's leader at the time, Sheikh Abbas Musawi.

Hizbullah is also thought to have been responsible for the attack on the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association building in Buenos Aires in 1994, when an explosives-laden van rammed into the structure and killed 85 people.

Another attack attributed to the group was the 1985 hijacking of TWA flight 847. One passenger was murdered; the remainder of the hostages were released over a two-week period.


The predictable condemners:
By Alan M. Dershowitz -- Jerusalem Post -- July 23, 2006 19:05

The Hizbullah and Hamas provocations against Israel once again demonstrate how terrorists exploit human rights and the media in their attacks on democracies.

By hiding behind their own civilians the Islamic radicals issue a challenge to democracies: Either violate your own morality by coming after us and inevitably killing some innocent civilians, or maintain your morality and leave us with a free hand to target your innocent civilians.

This challenge presents democracies such as Israel with a lose-lose option, and the terrorists with a win-win option.

There is one variable that could change this dynamic and present democracies with a viable option that could make terrorism less attractive as a tactic: The international community, the anti-Israel segment of the media and the so called "human rights" organizations could stop falling for this terrorist gambit and acknowledge that they are being used to promote the terrorist agenda.

Whenever a democracy is presented with the lose-lose option and chooses to defend its citizens by going after the terrorists who are hiding among civilians, this trio of predictable condemners can be counted on by the terrorists to accuse the democracy of "overreaction," "disproportionality" and "violations of human rights."

In doing so they play right into the hands of the terrorists, causing more terrorism and more civilian casualties on both sides. If instead this trio could, for once, be counted on to blame the terrorists for the civilian deaths on both sides, this tactic would no longer be a win-win situation for the terrorists.

IT SHOULD BE obvious by now that Hizbullah and Hamas actually want the Israeli military to kill as many Lebanese and Palestinian civilians as possible. That is why they store their rockets underneath the beds of civilians; why they launch their missiles from crowded civilian neighborhoods and hide among civilians. They are seeking to induce Israel to defend its civilians by going after them among their civilian "shields." They know that every civilian they induce Israel to kill hurts Israel in the media and the international and human rights communities.

They regard these human shields as shahids - martyrs - even if they did not volunteer for this lethal job. Under the law, criminals who use human shields are responsible for the deaths of the shields, even if the bullet that kills them came from the gun of a policeman.

Israel has every self-interest in minimizing civilian casualties, whereas the terrorists have every self-interest in maximizing them - on both sides. Israel should not be condemned for doing what every democracy would and should do: taking every reasonable military step to stop the terrorists from killing their innocent civilians.

NOW THAT some of those who are launching rockets at Israeli cities have announced they have new surprises in store for Israel that may include chemical and biological weapons, the stakes have gotten even higher.

What would Israeli critics regard as "proportioned" to a chemical or biological attack? What would they say if Israel tried to preempt such an attack and, in the process, killed some civilians? Must a democracy absorb a first strike from a weapon of mass destruction before it fights back? Would any other democracy be expected to do that?

The world must come to recognize the cynical way in which terrorists exploit civilian casualties. They launch anti-personnel rockets designed to maximize enemy civilian casualties, then they cry "human rights" when their own civilians - behind whom they are deliberately hiding - are killed by the democracies in the process of trying to prevent further acts of terrorism.

The very idea that terrorists who use women and children as suicide bombers against other women and children shed crocodile tears over the deaths of civilians they deliberately put in harm's way gives new meaning to the word "hypocrisy." We all know that hypocrisy is a tactic of the terrorists, but it is shocking that others fall for it and become complicit with the terrorists.

Let the blame fall where it belongs: on the terrorists who deliberately seek to kill enemy civilians and give their democratic enemies little choice but to kill some civilians behind whom the terrorists are hiding.

Those who condemn Israel for killing civilians - who are used as human shields and swords for the terrorists - actually cause more civilian deaths and make it harder for Israel to withdraw from the West Bank.

HOW THE WORLD reacts to Israel's current military efforts to protect its citizens will have a considerable impact on future Israeli steps toward peace. Prior to the recent kidnappings and rocket attacks the Israeli government had announced its intention to engage in further withdrawals from large portions of the West Bank.

But how can Israel be expected to move forward with any plan for withdrawal if all it can expect in return is more terrorism - what the terrorists regard as "land for rocket launchings" - and more condemnation when it seeks to protect its civilians?

The writer is a Professor of Law at Harvard and the author of Preemption: A Knife that Cuts Both Ways


What Part of 'War' Don't We Understand?
By Robert Tracinski -- FOX News

Political debates tend to be moved forward by new facts generated "on the ground." At these moments, it is far easier to convince people of the truth, because that truth is tied directly to facts people can see out in the world. Hezbollah's initiation of a war with Israel is one of those moments.

A few of us have been saying for years that the War on Terrorism is not just about Israel by itself or Iraq by itself that it is a "regional war," as Michael Ledeen has put it, in which the U.S. and its allies are being attacked by an "Islamist Axis" connecting Iran to its network of terrorist proxies across the Middle East.

Now this is everybody's headline.

Last week, for example, a headline in the New York Times admitted "Crisis Is Regional, Not Just Israel vs. Palestinians." This week, Newsweek devoted its cover story to Iran's role as the instigator "feeding the fire" of the conflict between Hezbollah and Israel.

Condoleezza Rice summed it up when she concluded that the terrorists "have showed their hand. And they've showed that their sponsors are in Tehran and in Damascus. Things are clarified right now." And the real news about President Bush's open mic night at the G-8 summit is not his use of a common vulgarity, but an exchange between Bush and Tony Blair regarding Syrian dictator Bashar Assad.

BLAIR: What does he think? He thinks that if Lebanon turns out fine, if you get a solution in Israel-Palestine, if Iraq ends in the right way
BUSH: Yeah, he's through.
BLAIR: He's had it. That's what this whole thing's about. It's the same thing with Iran.

There's been a lot of talk about the cleverness of the Iranians and about what master chess players they are to outmaneuver the Bush administration. But their strategy turns out to be utterly transparent.

So why is no one prepared to do anything to stop it?

Bush followed his exchange with Blair by adding, "I felt like telling Kofi [Annan] to get on the phone with Assad and make something happen." As we all know, the most fearsome response to an act of war is a phone call from a U.N. bureaucrat.

A similar paralysis is even holding back some of the most seemingly belligerent commentators. The Wall Street Journal, for example, characterizes the Hezbollah provocation as "Iran's First Strike" against the U.S. then counsels that we should let Israel do our fighting for us while we seek sanctions against Iran at the UN Security Council. Similarly, Michael Oren advocates an Israeli strike against the Syrian military but only to force the Syrian regime to make a bargain, keeping itself in power by withdrawing support for Hezbollah.

None of these actions matches the problem. If the problem is that the Syrian and Iranian regimes seek to preserve themselves and extend their influence by supporting terrorists across the Middle East, then the solution is to end those regimes and we should devise a military response directed at that goal.

Syria and Iran cannot be pressured, deterred, or contained, because supporting terrorists is their means of survival. This has been the Iranian and Syrian strategy since 2003: support the insurgency in Iraq, support Hezbollah and Hamas in the Palestinian territories and keep everything in such turmoil that America will be afraid to take further action, for fear that things will get even worse. But past military action has led to chaos only because we have always left intact the terror-sponsoring regimes in Syria and Iran.

Consider the incentives we have created for these two regimes: the more trouble they cause for us the less likely we are to attack them. The more they attack us, the more secure they are from our retaliation. This is the opposite of a rational strategy. What makes this possible is the crippling effect of two fundamental errors in our thinking: myopic short-range Pragmatism and crippling altruistic self-doubt.

Pragmatism doesn't just mean being practical; it's a philosophy which holds that there are no over-arching ideas and principles that can guide our action. The best expression I have ever read of the fractured thinking method of Pragmatism is in the current Newsweek cover story. After showing that Iran is the force behind every major conflict in the Middle East, the authors admonish us: "The Iranian challenge is not a Gordian knot that can be sliced through in one bold stroke. It's a bag full of knots, each of which has to be untied and, if possible, untangled from the rest."

Part of the reason America hesitates to act is because generations of Pragmatists have tried to turn our brains into bags full of knots making it harder for us to see the big picture and the bold strokes that are actually necessary to defeat our enemies.

Just as powerful is the warped logic of the "suicide bomb morality" of altruism, which identifies self-sacrifice as the essence of virtue. In any conflict, the good guys are expected to prove that they are good by backing down and sacrificing their interests while nothing is expected of the bad guys, precisely because they are evil. That's why a Los Angeles Times op-ed demanded that Israel "has to be the most responsible party" by declaring an immediate ceasefire. Why should Israel be the first to back down from the fight? The author answers: "What, after all, can we expect from Hamas or Hezbollah?"

Notice the warped psychology this fosters: the onus is always on the good guys to turn the other check and submit to evil. This is a moral outlook that empowers the evil because they are evil and restrains the good because they are good. Should we then be surprised to see the evil emboldened to greater acts of destruction?

There is no longer any doubt what is driving the conflict in the Middle East: it is the Syrian-Iranian strategy of using proxies to strike at the U.S. and extend Iran's fanatical influence over the region. The only question is whether we can stop tying our brains into knots and stop turning the other cheek long enough to strike back and topple these two regimes. [These last paragraphs in bold print to emphasize, what I agree is, the crux of the matter!!!!]


Why they love to hate us:
By Yair Lapid -- Ynet News -- (07.23.06, 22:12)
Some 1,500 years of anti-Semitism have taught us that there is something about us that annoys the world

One hundred years of conflict, 6.5 years of war, billions of wasted dollars, tens of thousands of people killed, not including the boy lying next to me on a rocky beach at Lake Karon in '82, with his guts spilling out of his body. Both of us staring the wound until he was evacuated by helicopter. Until this day I do not know if he is alive or dead. All this, and it is still impossible to understand.

It's not only what has happened. It is also what did not occur -- the hospitals that were never built, the universities that never opened, the roads that were never paved, three years stolen from the lives of millions of young people in uniform. Despite everything, we are still clueless as to the core of the riddle.

Why do they hate us so much?

I am not talking about the Palestinians this time. The conflict with them is intimate, focused, and has a direct impact on their day to day living. Without getting into who is right or wrong, it is clear their reasons for not wanting us here are very personal. We all know that in the end it will be resolved: Between us, in blood, sweat and tears that will soak the pages of the agreement that is signed. Until then, this is a war we can understand, even if no sane person can understand the way in which it is being waged.

But the others.

They are impossible to understand. Why does Hassan Nasrallah - together with his tens of thousands of minions - dedicate his life and his considerable talent as well as the fate of his country in order to wage a war against a country that he has never seen, people he has never met and an army he has no reason to fight?

Why do children in Iran who cannot even point to Israel on a map (mostly because it is so small) burn its flag in the city square and volunteer to commit suicide in order to destroy it? Why do Egyptian and Jordanian intellectuals incite the naive and helpless against the peace treaties, knowing full well that revoking them will set their countries back 20 years.

'So many ways to love your brother'

Why are the Syrians willing to stay a pathetic and oppressive third world country in exchange for the questionable privilege of serving as patron to terror organizations that in the end will threaten them too? Why do they hate us in Saudi Arabia? In Iraq? In the Sudan? What have we done to them? How are we even relevant to their lives? What do they even know about us? And why do they hate us so much in Afghanistan where they are starving. Where do they even have the strength to hate?

So many answers to this question and yet it is an enigma. There's the religious issue but religious people make their own choices. The Koran (together with the Shariya -- like the Halacha or Jewish code of laws) has thousands of laws. Why do we preoccupy them so much?

There are after all a number of other countries that have given them more of a reason to be angry. We didn't start the Crusades, and we didn't rule over them during the Colonial era, and we never forced them to convert. The Mongols, the Seliceans, the Greeks, the Romans, the Crusaders, the Ottomans and the English, all occupied them, destroying and pillaging the entire region. We did not even try so how is it that we are the enemy?

Is it about solidarity with their Palestinian brothers and sisters? If so then where are the tractors from Saudi Arabia for rebuilding Gush Katif? Where is the Indonesian team that is supposed to come and build a school in Gaza? Where are the doctors from Kuwait with the latest in surgical equipment? There are so many ways to love your brother, why do they prefer to help him to hate?

Is it something that we have done? 1,500 years of anti-Semitism have taught us an excruciatingly painful lesson -- there is something about us that annoys the world. So we did the thing that everyone wanted -- we left. We established our own tiny country where we could annoy each other without bothering anyone else. We did not ask for much to do this. Israel sits on an area comparable to maybe one percent of the total area of Saudi Arabia. We have no oil, no natural resources. We did not occupy the territory of another sovereign country.

'The Iranians are responsible'

Most of the towns and cities bombed this week were not stolen from anyone. Nahariya, Afula and Carmiel never existed until we founded them. Other Katyushas fell in places that no one ever doubted our rightful ownership on them. Haifa has history of Jewish presence since the third century before the Common Era. Tiberias played host to the last Sanhedria so no one can claim we stole these places from someone else.

Nevertheless the hatred continues as if we do not share a common fate. The hate is operative, toxic, and insatiable. Last week the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinijad called for the State of Israel "to be eliminated" as if we were some kind of bacteria. We've become so accustomed to his declarations that we don't even argue.

Israel never wanted to see Iran disappear. There were even diplomatic relations for as long as Iran wanted them. We don't have a common border or even bad memories. But they are still ready and willing to confront the entire western work, to face international sanctions, put their standard of living at risk, destroy what is left of their economy all for the privilege of rabidly hating us.

I am trying but cannot remember: What did we do to them? When? How? Why is the Iranian president saying that "The Moslem world's main problem is Israel"?

There are more than a billion Moslems in the world. Most live in substandard conditions. They suffer from hunger, poverty, ignorance; blood soaked conflicts that extend from Kashmir to Kurdistan and from Darfur to Bangladesh. And we are their main problem? How exactly are we bothering them?

I refuse to accept the argument that "that is the way they are." "They" used to say that about us and we've grown to suspect the statement. There has to be another reason, a dark secret that convinced residents of southern Lebanon to escalate things along a quiet border, to kidnap soldiers of an army that had withdrawn from their territory, and to turn their country into islands of rubble precisely at a time that they had finally extricated themselves from 20 years of rack and ruin. We have become accustomed to telling ourselves things like: "The Iranians are responsible," or "Syria is stirring things up behind the scenes.: But that is really too simplistic.

What about the people? What do they think? What about their hopes, their loves, their aspirations and dreams? What about their children? Do they really believe that hating us is enough of a reason to send their children off to die?


Day of carnage: 93 rockets, 93 casualties:
By Ahiya Raved -- Ynet News -- July 24, 2006

Several rocket barrages directed all day Sunday at northern Israel; two people lose their lives in attacks: Ninety-three rockets land on north and two people killed -- this is the price of another day of fighting in the north: Habib Awad, 48, of Aabalin, was killed in a carpentry shop in Kiryat Ata and 60-year-old Shimon Glikblich was killed in Haifa while driving. 91 people were hurt in barrages.

Since Sunday morning, Magen David Adom paramedics have been called to 39 incidents and have treated 93 casualties, including two dead, three seriously injured people, 28 lightly injured people, and 60 people suffering from shock.

Many rocket barrages landed all over northern communities:

The last barrage landed in Haifa shortly after 5 p.m. One rocket struck a rocket, splitting a gas tank and causing a blaze -- six people were lightly injured. Firefighters controlled the blaze after a short time.

Haifa Police District Chief Superintendent Ahuva Tomer said: "The rocket struck a gas tank and penetrated the building. There was no siren -- we will check this later."

Earlier, a man was seriously injured in Akko while nine others suffered shock. In Tiberias two car passengers were injured after a rocket landed nearby. One is moderately injured and the other is lightly wounded. Rockets also landed in Kiryat Shmona -- where two people were lightly injured.

The lethal barrage was fired at Haifa and the Krayot at around 11 a.m., killing two and injuring 17. Since the start of fighting 12 days ago, 37 people have been killed.

Neighbors, relatives, and friends assembled at the home of Shimon Gliklich in the Nave David neighborhood in southern Haifa. The neighborhood houses many poor people and new immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Ethiopia. Gliklich left behind a woman and a 22 year-old daughter.

Yardena Michael-Weisler, 41, lives in the same apartment building, and said: "They were quiet neighbors. We never heard them having an argument with anyone. He always cleaned the car and looked after it as if it was his whole world, and he was killed in it. They were thought to be relatively new neighbors and didn't manage to get to know them from up close. Neighbors are met either in times of happiness or sorrow. Now this is the situation, we are getting to know each other in depth in the bomb shelter and we all identify with the morning, because he's one of us."

Aablin [An Arab Village!!!!] residents: Take out Nasrallah:

A heavy atmosphere of mourning is hanging over the home of Habib Awad, in Aablin, near Kiryat Ata. Awad was killed this afternoon by a Katyusha rocket strike. His wife, Hifa, and other women sat under the family home near the community's entrance. Almost everyone agrees that Hassan Nasrallah must be taken out.

Brother in law Haj said: "When a person is sick, he is given medicine to get better. What they did here is allow the cancer to spread. He (Nasrallah) should have been taken out before this damage occurred." Another resident added: "He destroyed Lebanon and now he is trying to destroy Israel."

Habib's brother, Philip, said that during the attack he was with his father, Isa, at the Kiryot medical center. "When the siren sounded we went down to the stairwell with everyone else, and one of the doctors told us that the rocket landed in Krayot. I didn't attach much importance to that yet. But when I came home, I turned on the television and began to shake. They said there were two people killed, one in Nesher (which later turned out to be Haifa) and one in Kiryat Ata. I started to panic. My heart prophesied bad things. I called his wife; I heard her and the children crying. She told me he wasn't answering the phone. I spoke with her wife, he is a police officer, and he told me to call again in 15 minutes. When I called again he told me he was on his way to me. Then I understood that my worst fears came true. That my brother was killed."

Haj said he called his friend to clarify the identity of the casualty. "They didn't know I was from Aablin. They told it me it was someone from my community. When they gave me the name I realized it was my brother in law. I asked them only to call me when they come to notify the family. When my sister saw me arrive with the police officers, she immediately understood what happened and burst out in shouts."

Family members say Habib was a quiet person and loved by all family members. "All the people in the village knew him, loved him, and esteemed him. He everyone."

Habib's brother said he loved his work at the carpentry shop, in which he worked for close to 20 years. "A few days ago, when there was tension, I called Habib's wife and asked him where he was. She told me he was at work, and I told her to call him immediately and tell him to go back home."

Philip said: "There is no benefit in war. No leader and no agreement in the world will bring my brother back. There are no winners in war, but the simple person is the one who suffers." Half of the residents of Aablin are Orthodox Christians and the other half are Muslims.

Habib left behind his wife -- Hifa, and four children, a 15 year-old daughter, two sons aged 13 and 11, and a 5-year-old daughter. His funeral will be held Monday at 5 p.m. in Aablin.

Keren Natanzon contributed to the report


U.S. Ambassador John Bolton says that Israel has a right to defend itself against Hezbollah:
CNN -- Sunday night, July 23, 2006

WASHINGTON -- Against growing international criticism that Israel's response to Hezbollah's July 12 attack has been disproportionate, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations on Sunday defended Israel's use of force. "I think it's important that we not fall into the trap of moral equivalency here," Ambassador John Bolton told CNN's "Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer."

"What Hezbollah has done is kidnap Israeli soldiers and rain rockets and mortar shells on innocent Israeli civilians. What Israel has done in response is act in self-defense. And I don't quite know what the argument about proportionate force means here. Is Israel entitled only to kidnap two Hezbollah operatives and fire a couple of rockets aimlessly into Lebanon?

"The situation is that Israel has lived under the terrorist threat of Hezbollah for years, and these most recent attacks have given it the legitimate right, the same right America would have if we were attacked, to deal with the problem. And that's what they're doing."

The fighting began July 12, when Hezbollah fighters killed three Israeli soldiers and abducted two others in northern Israel. Since then, Israeli warplanes have bombed Lebanese towns and villages deemed Hezbollah strongholds and its forces have moved into Lebanese territory in what Israel has called temporary incursions intended to push Hezbollah fighters far enough from the border so they cannot threaten Israel. In doing so, Israeli forces have killed at least 271 people and wounded at least 711, according to officials with the Lebanese security forces.

The United States has taken note and responded accordingly, Bolton said. "We have urged the government of Israel to exercise the utmost care in the conduct of its military operations, to avoid innocent Lebanese civilians, and to avoid damage to the democratic government of Lebanon, and I think Israel, being a responsible democratic state itself, is trying to carry that out."

Hezbollah attacks have killed seven Israeli civilians and 20 soldiers and wounded more than 300 civilians and more than 60 soldiers, according to the Israel Defense Forces.

Bolton bristled at last week's suggestion from Louise Arbour, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, that Israeli leaders could be charged with war crimes.

"You know, in America, prosecutors are not supposed to threaten people in public based on press reports," said Bolton, a graduate of Yale Law School. "I would just say as one lawyer to another, that -- to Mrs. Arbour, that she should consider her professional ethics and responsibilities very carefully here before threatening criminal charges based on press accounts." And Bolton gave little weight to Saturday's comment from the British minister of state, Kim Howells, critical of Israel's attacks on Lebanon.

"These have not been surgical strikes, and it's very, very difficult, I think, to understand the kind of military tactics that have been used," Howells said. "You know, if they're chasing Hezbollah, you go for Hezbollah. You don't go for the entire Lebanese nation, and that's the difference." Asked whether the remark represents a rift between the Bush administration and the government of Prime Minister Tony Blair, Bolton said, "I don't think so." Bolton said Bush has spoken several times with Blair about the matter, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been in touch with her British counterpart.

"So, there may be individual comments here and there. That even happens in the American government from time to time. But I think we're working very closely with the United Kingdom on this matter."

Rice is preparing to travel to the region for talks with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in Israel and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank. She also plans to attend an international conference in Rome, Italy, on crafting a peace agreement and shoring up Lebanon's government. She did not plan to meet with Hezbollah or with Syrian leaders.


[On a much brighter note.....]
The safe place to be?
By Erika Snyder -- Jerusalem Post

As residents in the North are packed into bomb shelters, Jerusalem thrives. Rehov Ben-Yehuda remains packed, the crowd is shoulder to shoulder at Mahaneh Yehuda and hundreds of people wait at bus stops throughout Jerusalem. In a city that was plagued by suicide bombings during the second intifada, the calm is striking.

Though a potential suicide bomber was thwarted by police on Jaffa Road Monday morning, so far residents have enjoyed relative safety from the escalating conflict in other areas of the country. "I feel very good and safe," says Jerusalemite Eti Bracha, standing in the shade at Mahaneh Yehuda. As people push past her, their arms loaded with food parcels, the only imminent threat appears to be aggressive shoppers. "Well," she considers, "I feel a little afraid. But I must buy my food."

Among the Jerusalem residents and tourists interviewed by In Jerusalem at popular sites, the general consensus is one of hopeful safety. Overwhelmingly, citizens trust the Jerusalem Police and the IDF.

Jerusalem Police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby speaks confidently of the security situation in Jerusalem, despite a raised level of alert across the country. Members from police forces from districts across the country, Ben-Ruby told IJ, have increased patrols throughout the city, though not in response to any specific threats.

"We increased our activity in Jerusalem in many ways," he says. "There are more checkpoints, and more people in the streets. Citizens are more vigilant as well, based on the number of phone calls received at the police emergency room downstairs here.

"Now, except for the incident at Jaffa Gate, we have managed to stop the suicide bombers in Jerusalem. Now, we don't have a specific alert focused on Jerusalem. We are on high alert throughout the country. We have no specific information about other events so far."

He denies that there was any danger riding buses or gathering in crowded places, though Ben-Ruby asks that citizens help the police by being aware of their surroundings and calling if they see "anything at all" suspicious.

Meanwhile, on Rehov Ben-Yehuda, crowds of teens, tourists and residents go about their lives as usual. Though Kikar Zion appears less crowded than usual, the cool early-evening wind calls to many people, who are presumably tired of watching the war in the North on television.

Members of a large extended family from North America, speaking and laughing loudly as they walked through Kikar Zion up Ben-Yehuda to buy souvenirs and enjoy the sights, appeared to be enjoying themselves. They arrived in the country to dedicate a wellness center to soldiers. The dedication was supposed to take place on a base in the North.

Following the dedication, the family had planned to attend a bar mitzva on a missile ship off the coast of Haifa. Needless to say, their plans have changed. The bar mitzva was moved to Jerusalem and took place on Monday. The bar mitzva boy's aunt, Nancy Pilcher of Washington, DC, is cautiously optimistic.

"I feel pretty safe here [in Jerusalem]. This is my first trip to Israel in 35 years. I don't go on vacation often. It usually rains," she says with a wry smile and a hint of irony, noting that Katyushas are now falling in Haifa where the family had planned to stay. A few minutes later, the crowd beginning to swell in the square, Pilcher speaks a little less confidently. "Well, I'm not going to say I'm carefree," she says. "We are keeping plans as usual, though."


Peretz: 2,200 rockets fired at northern Israel, so far:
Haaretz -- July 24, 2006

Israel Defense Forces officials admitted Sunday that efforts at reducing or preventing Hezbollah rocket fire have yet to bear fruit. The IDF believes that unless the pace of the army's anti-Hezbollah operations in Lebanon is quickened, the Shi'ite group will maintain the capability to lob Katyushas into northern Israel continuously for one month.

Earlier Sunday, Defense Minister Amir Peretz told the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that Hezbollah operatives have launched close to 2,200 rockets, half of which have struck Israeli towns in the north.

The IDF's chief of military intelligence, Amos Yadlin, told reporters that a similar number of rockets have been destroyed as a result of IDF raids. Prior to the outbreak of hostilities, Israeli estimates placed the number of rockets and missiles in Hezbollah's arsenal at between 10,000 and 12,000.

Nahariya, Haifa, Afula, Nazareth, Carmiel, Acre, Tiberias, Safed, Rosh Pina, Ma'alot, Hatzor, the Golan Heights, Kiryat Shmona, Carmiel, Mt. Meron, Avivim were hit by more than 160 rockets on Sunday, July 23.


[Here is an article, to which I can easily relate.....since two of my daughters have also become "refugees", staying now in Tel Aviv.....Stacey with her family from Carmiel and Heidi with her family from Safed!!!! We pray they'll be able to return to their respective homes, very soon!!!!]

Among family, but still refugees:
Haaretz -- July 24, 2006

The host family: Ilanit and Avi Gadash, both 34. Avi works for El Al, Ilanit works for the Union of Local Governments. Married four months, they live in a three-room apartment in Ramat Gan.

The guest family: Keren, Marjorie and Nimrod Buhbut. Keren, the wife, was planning to open a pharmacy in Ma'alot in a few weeks, but that has been postponed. Shlomo remained in Ma'alot (Keren: "He won't desert his post"), together with the older children, Yonatan, 23, and Leroy, 20. Marjorie, 16, and Nimrod, 9, joined their mother.

What is the connection between the families? Shlomo, Keren's husband, is Ilanit's uncle. How long have the families been living together? Keren, Marjorie and Nimrod arrived a week ago. How are they getting along? Ilanit: "We're not in the house all day so they have the place to themselves. In the evening, we visit other relatives who are refugees from the north."

Keren: "In Ma'alot we didn't leave the house for four days, it was absolutely impossible. So first we have to get used to being able to go out. Otherwise we wander around, it's an uncomfortable feeling but they are treating us with tons of love and warmth, and our relatives come and visit, too. We all feel like refugees here. I meet people from Ma'alot in the street, we're all spread out and you feel like a refugee. My older children are there and I'm stressing out down here. When you take a planned vacation, it's fun, but to suddenly leave because you have no choice, even if it's family, it's really not a nice feeling. When I talk to my female friends, even if they're in a hotel by the beach, no one is having fun and they all want to go home."

Where does everyone sleep? One room in the apartment was allocated to the guests. Ilanit: "Luckily we don't have any children yet." Keren and Marjorie sleep on the bed, Nimrod sleeps on a mattress on the floor.

How long will they stay? Ilanit: "We don't yet know how long it will continue, for now they are with us."

Keren: I'd like to go back home as soon as possible, but today I spoke with a friend who returned to Ma'alot and she said, 'Don't you dare come back to Ma'alot because there are booms all the time and you can't go out, stay in the center.' "I pray all the time for it to be over already." [Ditto!!!! Exactly for what we are all praying!!!!]


Our very strange day with Hezbollah:
Anderson Cooper Blog 360 -- CNN -- Sunday, July 23, 2006 "Be honest about what you see, get out of the way and let the story reveal itself"

Hezbollah invited us to come see them again; it's the second time in as many days. Yesterday, Anderson, photographer Neil Hallsworth and I drove to the southern suburbs of Beirut and waited at a predetermined meeting spot.

A few minutes passed, then an old, American-made sedan pulled up behind us. Two men jumped out of the car. Our fixer approached them and after an animated conversation, one of the Hezbollah men stuck his head in our car window and said in passable English, "We're very sorry to inconvenience you but there will be no tour today. There are Israeli drones overhead and it's not safe to be here. Please leave now." Those were easy orders to follow.

Today, we were told Hezbollah was again willing to take our team into their neighborhood. Meet them at the same spot, they said, at 11 a.m. and don't be late. We weren't. We waited. Then waited some more, and what follows is a log of a very strange day with Hezbollah.

10:40 a.m.: Our team of Anderson, Neil, producer Tommy Evans and I arrive at the site of a bridge that's been blown to pieces by Israeli bombs. It's the same spot we met our Hezbollah men yesterday. Next to the bridge there are two high-rise apartment buildings under construction. This is a poor neighborhood and new construction clearly doesn't come here often. The buildings are heavily damaged, though, and it seems unlikely they'll ever be completed.

10:50 a.m.: Our translator, Mira, is making a call to Hezbollah's office, making sure they know we've arrived. You don't have to spend much time in these neighborhoods to realize that you're an outsider ... and you're being watched. They tell us they know we're here.

11:05 a.m.: Hezbollah is late for our meeting. We're sitting still for 25 minutes in an area recently hit hard by Israeli jets, so it's no surprise the mood is tense. We're not talking much. A young couple passes by -- the boy is wearing jeans and short sleeves, the girl a head-scarf and a dress covering her body ankle to wrist. They nod politely and continue past us. They're holding hands. We're still waiting.

11:22 a.m.: A crowd of journalists is passing 200 yards behind us and we quickly realize we've been given bad information and that Hezbollah's tour has started without us. We turn our car around and try to catch up.

11:26 a.m.: It's not hard to spot 40 western journalists walking through a bombed-out area, and we've just now found the group. We also find out we missed some ground rules. We're pulling into a side street and two men dressed in black step out of a doorway with AK-47s. Neil has the camera on his shoulder and they immediately assume he's rolling. He's not, but they want to check the tape anyway. We show it to them and they let us pass. Hezbollah tour ground rule #1: Don't show the faces of anyone we don't want you to see or pictures of places you're not supposed to be. Now we know. We catch up to the group.

11:35 a.m.: We're standing on what used to be a residential street. It's now a mess of wires and rubble. Smoke is still rising off the debris. Bombs have smashed nearly a quarter mile of this area and there's virtually nothing left. There's a twisted tire from a children's bike here, some compact disks from someone's collection there. Anderson is doing a few stand-ups, but the Hezbollah representative leading the tour is telling us it's time to move on. We tell him we want to talk to some people who lived here, who witnessed what happened. "Not here," he says. "Maybe at our next stop."

12:05 p.m.: Our car is being led through back streets to a broken-down building with five ambulances parked in front. "These are the emergency workers who respond to casualty calls when Israel drops their bombs," the Hezbollah man says. "Take your pictures and talk to some of them if you'd like." We're growing tired of what is now obviously a dog-and-pony show, but we decide to play along, and approach one driver with a few questions. Anderson asks him what kind of casualties he's seeing, but before he can answer, the ambulance beside us turns on his siren and screeches out, followed by the next ambulance, then the next. It's a well coordinated and not-so-subtle piece of propaganda that might as well come with a soundtrack titled "Hezbollah Cares."

12:16 p.m.: We again ask the Hezbollah guy (he won't give us his name) when we can talk to some residents, but he brushes us off and tells us maybe at our next stop. He's now on his cell phone and it's not hard to imagine he's making sure all the props are in place before we move on. I wish I spoke Arabic. He opens our car door, slides in, and says he's riding with us. We're fine with it and offer him a bottle of water. "No thank you," he says in English. While we have his attention, Anderson asks him if we can talk to someone in Hezbollah's leadership. His answer is short: "Not while we're at war." He gets out of our car and onto the back of someone's motor scooter.

12:30 p.m.: We're now driving through a neighborhood that hasn't seen any bombing, but it's here we're told we can talk to some residents. Hezbollah guy takes us down to what amounts to a crude bomb shelter and tells us the people here live on this street but are afraid to sleep in their apartment. The concrete room is dimly lit and dank. Two people on plastic chairs are watching an Arabic news channel. One sits in the corner yelling angry epithets about Israel for the reporters. We wait for the media gaggle to leave, then introduce ourselves. They tell us they're a mother,

her son and his wife. There's no way to know if it's true. The conversation follows a familiar pattern:

"Are you scared?" "No!"
"Will you fight?" "To the death!"
"Do you hate Israel?" "Of course, and its mother America!"

We thank them for their insights and move back up to the street.

12:44 p.m.: We're back on the street and on cue, a Hezbollah resistance song is now blaring from an apartment. A young man on the porch dressed in black is giving us the victory sign. I look behind me and there's our Hezbollah guide encouraging the young man to lift his hands higher so our camera can see.

12:50 p.m.: Anderson is doing a few more stand-ups about our story that's quickly become less about Hezbollah and more about their crude propaganda machine when the "family" emerges from the bunker behind us and joins their friends in the street. They're laughing, talking loudly, and gesturing with their hands, mocking anger. I really should learn Arabic. Anderson does another stand-up about the group now standing behind us.

12:55 p.m.: We pile into our van and are now driving out of the Hezbollah-controlled neighborhood. It feels like we've just left a haunted house: Slightly frightening at first, but ridiculous by the end.
Posted By Charlie Moore, CNN Senior Producer: 11:11 AM ET


[From England, here are brief notes on the 9 key players here.....]

Who's Who in Middle East conflict: SkyNews -- 11:05, Mon Jul 24

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is relatively new to his job. He took over from Ariel Sharon following his stroke earlier this year and the conflict with Hizbollah is his first real test. With no major military experience, the Israeli army and Israeli people are watching his every move. Mr Olmert is one of the main players in the conflict.

At the opposite end of the table is Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the Secretary General of Hizbollah - an Islamic fundamentalist organisation. He has led the resistance party since 1992 and is responsible for its repositioning as a major player in Lebanese politics.

Tzipi Livni is the Israeli Foreign Minister. She was appointed in January and is one of only two women to have held the post. In the conflict, she is acting as Israel's conscience and has to deal with the international pressure for a diplomatic solution.

Bashar al Assad is Syria's President. He studied in London and would have been an optician if his older brother had not been killed in a car accident in 1994. Syria is accused of backing Hizbollah and supplying the group with weapons.

Fouad Siniora is the Lebanese leader. He has pleaded with the UN to demand a ceasefire and has described his country as "a disaster zone". Israel says Mr Siniora must take Hizbollah in hand - but few analysts believe he has the power to do so.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is the Iranian President. His government is a major backer of Hizbollah and is the country's first non-cleric leader for 24 years. He made headlines last year by saying Israel should be "wiped off the map".

US President George Bush is a self-described "war president". He has committed the US to working towards peace in the Middle East and from his point of view, the crisis is actually an opportunity to broker a lasting peace deal. The US has historically backed Israel and Mr Bush has been overheard laying much of the blame firmly at Syria's door. [Thank G-d for President Bush!!!!]

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been deployed on a peace mission to the Middle East. She is the first African-American woman to hold the post and last year she was ranked the most powerful woman in the world by Forbes magazine.

The fact that Britain has refused to back a ceasefire in the Middle East has left Prime Minister Tony Blair open to much national and international criticism. He told Parliament: "If it is to stop it has to stop by undoing how it started." A informal discussion Mr Blair had with President Bush revealed his position to be a supporting role to the US standpoint. [Good for him!!!!]


IDF targets car carrying fleeing Hizbullah members:
By Yaakov Katz And Jpost Staff - with AP - July 24, 2006 17:49

The IAF targeted a car carrying Hizbullah members who were fleeing a rocket launching site on Monday afternoon, east of Tyre in southern Lebanon. The IDF also struck a structure in the area being used by the guerillas.

Earlier Monday, Golani Brigade troops, tanks and combat engineers engaged in heavy fighting after pushing their way deeper into Lebanon towards the village of Bint Jbail, branded Hizbullah's "terror capital" in southern Lebanon, located northeast of Maroun al-Ras. The troops came under attack from anti-tank missiles and sniper fire.

Thirteen IDF soldiers - including a Lt.-Col. who was moderately wounded - were evacuated to Rambam Hospital in Haifa and to Ziv Hospital in Safed, with wounds ranging from light to moderate. The IDF reported at least 15 Hizbullah gunmen had been killed in the battle.

Two IAF pilots were injured Monday afternoon as their Apache helicopter crash landed and burst into flames north of Safed near the Lebanese border. Several other soldiers were wounded in the incident. Firefighters at the scene worked to extinguish a fire that began to spread as a result of the crash.

A high ranking IAF officer told The Jerusalem Post that an initial report that the helicopter got entangled in an electrical wire was false, saying that the helicopter was flying at an altitude that was much higher than the electric cable. The officer said that the IDF was looking into the possibility that the Apache helicopter was shot down by Hizbullah anti-aircraft fire. He said that the helicopter was in the midst of a mission to assist ground troops while hovering near the northern border.

The officer told The Post that there was no decision to ground IAF aircraft following the incident. He said that there did not appear to be a connection between Monday's crash and last Thursday's incident when two other Apache gun ships collided over northern Israel. Maj. Ran Yehoshua Kochava, 37, was killed and three other pilots were injured - one critically - in the collision.

A high-ranking IAF officer said earlier Monday that the air force felt that it was picking up on the Hizbullah's method of hiding Katyusha launchers, and that a quick combination of real-time intelligence and attacks by aircraft allowed for such success. [Thank G-d!!!!]

The officer said that alongside attacks on Katyusha rocket launchers, the IAF was investing a great deal in trying to hit Hizbullah leaders.

The main focus of the IAF operation, the officer said, was to provide cover for IDF troops operating on the ground in southern Lebanon. He said that IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz had given an order that for every strike on Haifa, 10 Hizbullah targets in the Dahiya neighborhood should be targeted. [Yes, AT LEAST 10!!!!]

However, the IDF Spokesman's Office released a statement on Monday morning denying that such an order had been given and saying that the IAF officer was mistaken. [Even if he didn't "say" it.....let's hope he is thinking, and planning to do, it!!!!]

IDF ground forces and Hizbullah guerrillas were already engaged Monday morning in a heavy exchange of fire north of the village of Maroun al-Ras, a strongly-contested Hizbullah stronghold.

Despite sporadic gunbattles throughout the day in Maroun al-Ras - the scene of heavy fighting last week - the IDF on Sunday dispatched troops to take up positions on the outskirts of Bint Jbail. Troops were surrounding the town's casbah in the late afternoon.

IDF sources estimated that Hizbullah had accumulated large quantities of weapons and missiles in the village, which they said would be raided as part of Operation Change of Direction launched July 12, following the abduction of two soldiers in a cross-border Hizbullah attack.

Bint Jbail, the sources said, had become Hizbullah's main base of terror operations since Israel's withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000. The Shi'ite village served as a comfortable and sympathetic breeding ground, they said, for the Hizbullah, harboring some 100 guerillas.

Over the weekend however the IDF noticed that a large percentage of the village had begun to move to the north after IAF fighter jets distributed flyers warning residents there of the looming IDF raid. Sources said that only 20 percent of the 20,000 residents in the village remained alongside the Hizbullah fighters.

The army could not confirm a Channel 2 report that the Hizbullah fire came from a number of terror cells that had hidden in tunnels after the IDF gained control of the village on Saturday.


UN observer seriously wounded by Hizbullah gunfire in Lebanon
By Associated Press -- July 24, 2006 4:31

A United Nations observer was seriously wounded Sunday in the crossfire during fighting between Hizbullah and Israeli troops in south Lebanon, and flown to an Israeli hospital for treatment, officials said.

The observer, identified as Italian army Capt. Roberto Punzo, was wounded by "fragments," the office of the Italian chiefs of staff said, adding that the source of the fragments was not immediately clear.

Earlier a UN official said he had been wounded by a bullet, apparently fired by Hizbullah. Punzo was evacuated by an Israeli military helicopter to Rambam Hospital in Haifa and admitted for emergency care, said hospital spokesman David Ratner. Ratner said he was undergoing surgery for a stomach wound and was in serious but stable condition.

Punzo is the second member of the UN monitoring team injured in 12 days of fighting. Several UN positions on the border have taken hits from Israeli shells, and Israel said earlier this week that a UN post on its side was hit by a Hizbullah missile - though the observer team said it was a stray Israeli shell. [Hey, why not blame us?!?! Everyone does!!!!]


'Missile strike on TA still real threat'
By Jpost.Com Staff -- July 24, 2006 15:04

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz said on Monday that a Hizbullah missile attack on Tel Aviv still remained a real threat. [G-d forbid!!!!]

Halutz said that the destruction of the Iranian long-range Zelzal missile last week proved that Hizbullah possessed this capability, adding, "what we don't have answers for are when and how the rocket could be fired."

Halutz estimated that in the southern Lebanese town of Bint Jbail, where the IDF are currently operating, there were 500 terrorists remaining alongside residents who had not evacuated the area in spite of repeated warnings from the IDF. There were 20,000 people in the town that Halutz called a "symbol of Hizbullah," before the IDF incursion.

Halutz issued a scathing warning to the Hizbullah leader saying, "Nasrallah recently spoke from there and in his next speech, if he returns to the same location, he should choose his words more carefully." "If he (Nasrallah) arrived as the head of a political party, that would be one thing, but if he came as a head of a terror group, we would not accept that," added Halutz.

On Operation Change of Direction, Halutz said that the aim was for the military operation to provide the top echelons with a good starting point before engaging in the diplomatic process.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief of Staff Maj.-Gen. Moshe Kaplinski said that the ability Hizbullah was demonstrating in the current conflict had not surprised the IDF. "It is the same Hizbullah with different weaponry, that has now been forced into a defensive war. We are the attackers, and in some ways this gives us an advantage," said Kaplinski. He stressed that Hizbullah had not exposed all its means of warfare and still had "a few surprises," as had the IDF.

Kaplinski said that Operation Change of Direction would last a few more weeks, adding that Hizbullah was sustaining long-lasting damage to its military capability and was being exposed as nothing more than a terrorist movement. The deputy chief of staff said that he did not expect there to be an additional drafting of reservist soldiers.


After Maroun al-Ras battle, Bint-Jbail looms as next challenge:
By Anshel Pfeffer -- Jerusalem Post -- July 24, 2006 1:33

The commander of the Engineering Corps battalion was very clear over the wireless. "When you're operating north of Maroun Al-Ras," he ordered the commander of one of his advance units Sunday afternoon, "if you see a terrorist, don't risk yourselves to get him, call up the artillery and stay behind. I don't want any soldiers endangered."

Most of Sunday around Maroun Al-Ras was relatively quiet. In the morning there was an artillery barrage launched against Bint-Jbail, the main Hizbullah stronghold to the north of the village, and occasionally there were sirens warning of another Katyusha attack.

The main signs of the fiercest ground battle in this conflict were the roads that had been plowed up by tank tracks and fields burned by falling shells.

The battle for Maroun Al-Ras might have already been over, and the underground complex of Hizbullah destroyed by the IDF, at the cost of seven soldiers, but the officers in command of the various forces there were still worried about additional losses. The battle for the village and the extensive Hizbullah bunkers had raged for almost four days, and it was possible to hear varying judgments of its success from officers and soldiers.

The first clash had been Tuesday night, when soldiers of the elite Maglan unit entered the village to clear it of Hizbullah fighters and destroy the positions used to shell villages and towns in Upper Galilee. The opposition was fierce and two Maglan soldiers were killed in the exchange of fire on Wednesday morning.

The IDF began pouring in more forces, tanks from three different brigades - 7, 188 and 401 - the elite "Egoz" of the Golani Brigade, an Engineering Corps battalion and the reconnaissance unit and Battalion 101 of the Paratrooper Brigade.

On Thursday five Egoz soldiers were killed by an anti-tank missile in the village. The fighting was fierce, often at very short-range with the soldiers advancing from bunker to bunker. Some of these were blown up with the Hizbullah fighters inside.

A sign of the difficulty of the battle was the fact that one soldier's body disappeared for two days, a fact that the IDF, concerned that Hizbullah would try and capture it, forbid the media to report. It was recovered only on Saturday by his comrades.

Meanwhile, over the weekend the paratroopers and Engineering Corps units destroyed houses used by Hizbullah in the village and finished off the remaining fighters.

Criticism has been heard in the army on the hurried way that some of the forces were sent into the village. The Egoz force was sent in daylight by a route that exposed them to Hizbullah, and some of the tanks operating in the area weren't properly protected.

On Sunday a makeshift workshop had been set up on the old border road next to Moshav Avivim [Just a few miles north of Safed], where technical teams were attaching huge steel plates underneath Merkava tanks to protect them from explosive devices like the one that had killed four soldiers during the first hours of the kidnapping that began the conflict 12 days ago.

"That's the way it works, you learn from mistakes" said the chief of one of the technical crews. Not only ground devices worried the tank crews. A tank driver from Brigade 7 resting at the side of the road after his tank had left Lebanon said that "many of our tanks took hits, mainly from Sagger rockets; none of the tanks were destroyed but quite a few of our friends were wounded."

OC Northern Command Maj.-Gen. Udi Adam said at a briefing at Northern Command on Sunday that "the force in Maroun Al-Ras came across opposition that necessitated additional back-up and a paratrooper force professionally took control of the village." Adam deflected the criticism of the operation and said that "each commander in the field uses his own consideration on how to move his force."

The official account of the battle numbered 13 dead Hizbullah fighters, but Adam said that there more. However he had ordered his soldiers not to endanger themselves to bring back dead enemy bodies. One of the officers involved in the fighting estimated the Hizbullah dead at at least 30.

IDF commanders seemed torn between respect and disdain for their adversary. "We weren't surprised that they hadn't run away," said Adam, "they are fighters like we are, only we're better and they still act like a terror organization because they hide behind women and children." "Our soldiers showed bravery, and when contact was made, we were victorious," he added.

An officer who participated in the battle reacted angrily to the criticism in the media from high-ranking officers. "We fought like lions," he said. "This isn't the PLO or Hamas; Hizbullah is a fighting military organization and they don't run away. We fought a war and in a war you have to be prepared for every eventuality. We were prepared and we won."

But Maroun Al-Ras might just be a foretaste of things to come. Bint-Jbail, the Shi'ite town down the road, is a major Hizbullah stronghold. Adam wasn't willing to say when and if the IDF would advance on the town, but a paratrooper resting from the weekend's fighting said: "We've been shown UAV footage from Bint-Jbail and it's full of them."


Volunteers rescue pets wounded in Katyusha attacks
By Jenny Merkin -- Jerusalem Post -- July 24, 2006

While northerners pour into the southern part of the country or into neighborhood bomb shelters, dogs and cats, some wounded by shrapnel from Katyusha rockets, are being left to fend for themselves.

Consequently, volunteer organizations have come to the rescue, trying to gather the abandoned pets and bring them to safer surroundings. Two such associations are AHAVA, an organization created to better the lives of animals in Israel and the Middle East, and Tenu L'Haiot L'Hiot (Let Animals Live).

AHAVA has collected 168 dogs and cats and brought them into shelters, kennels and private homes. Its volunteers have found so many that the organization lacks the room to house more. Additionally, AHAVA volunteers are bringing food to the North to feed the hundreds of cats that roam the streets and are accustomed to being fed by local residents.

Tenu L'Haiot L'Hiot has gathered close to 300 animals and has housed them in various shelters. On Saturday, the organization ran a drive in Ramle for people to come and adopt these pets, but few people came to the event.

"These dogs and cats are being left outside and they are getting wounded from the shrapnel," said Tamara More, a spokesperson for AHAVA. More, who has found eight wounded animals and believes there "are hundreds if not thousands of more animals that have been injured." In addition to physical injury, pets have been emotionally traumatized by the effects of the last few weeks.

"Imagine how you would feel if you had been accustomed to living in a loving, comfortable environment, then abandoned, living on the street, and then have rockets fall all around you? It's not hard to imagine how they feel," said Etti Altman, spokeswoman for Tenu L'Haiot L'Hiot.

Nonetheless, More said that the animals in the shelters were getting along well and were "just happy to be back in a home and off the scary streets. They are so grateful." However, she added, "they still tremble at every sound."

Not all owners have abandoned their pets. In fact, some animals factor greatly in their owners' decisions regarding leaving the north. Gavriel Rubinstein did not originally leave his home in Safed because he did not want to leave his dog, Simba. [My granddaughter, Irene Debbie, brought her pet rabbit from Carmiel, to Tel Aviv, with her!!!! My daughter Felicia and her three children are staying in their home, refusing to go into a bomb shelter here in Safed, because their neighbors will NOT allow dogs in there.....and they refuse to leave Snoopy and Brownie at home, alone!!!!]

"When you have a pet, you take in a responsibility. You become attached to your animals and they become one of the family. You can't just leave them behind. They have feelings and are traumatized by the noise," explained Gavriel's mother, Sarah. [In fact, the dogs hear the rockets coming in, before we do.....we, humans, hear them only after they have hit!!!!]


Nowhere to go, no way to get there:
By Lily Galili -- Haaretz -- July 24, 2006

The public bomb shelter in Kiryat Shmona is in a basement that, during normal times, serves as the Golden Gloves boxing club. There are posters on the walls, boxing gloves scattered here and there, and equipment lying about in the corners. The club, which has already groomed a few local stars, is run by a Russiam immigrant on a volunteer basis.

But lately the shelter is being used for another purpose: Elderly immigrants from the Commonwealth of Independent States have found refuge there, huddling on the narrow cots, which they hardly ever leave - even during a lulls in the rocket barrages. When there are no Katyushas, the city shudders from incessant mortar fire from Israel Defense Forces positions on the outskirts of town. The local military commander has suggested to Kiryat Shmona Mayor Haim Barbibai that he ask the government to distribute ear plugs to the town's residents.

It would be difficult to find a starker contrast than the power that radiates from the aggressive posters on the walls of the subterranean boxing club, and the weakness of the elderly immigrants crouching beneath them.

The immigrants from the CIS, normally some 23 percent of Kiryat Shmona's population, are at present the overwhelming majority there. The veteran Israelis left long ago for points south. Mostly retired, and with a high proportion of single mothers, the immigrants have nowhere to go and no way of getting there. They do not own cars and are completely dependent on public transportation, which has stopped.

This, however, is not the end of their story: Even with the wave of warm hospitality emanating from families in the center of the country, there is little interest in inviting older folks who do not speak Hebrew into the home. There is also little willingness to absorb single-parent families from "outside the fold."

"The situation stinks," says Anna Vernik, the immigration coordinator at a community center in Kiryat Shmona. "The war sharpens the socioeconomic differences and our structural weakness."

If things are hard for all residents of the north, it's particularly difficult for the immigrants. Their foreignness, their limited command of Hebrew, the lack of a social and family network for them around the country - all these are now additional obstacles, which are not faced by veteran residents. It is not easy being old and sick these days, all the more so if someone is elderly, ailing and an immigrant. It is particularly difficult to be a single parent mother with no "safety net," no aunt in Petah Tikva or nephew who has not been in touch for years, but has now offered to help.

Immigrants have none of these. They are newcomers. Everything is difficult for them. That is why a group of then are stuck in this boxing club-shelter, day and night, preferring it over staying at home, where they have to decide alone whether the horrible "boom" was one of "their" Katyushas or "our" mortars. Even on Friday, in the short lull between attacks, they preferred to stay in the shelter.

Maria Zhitomirsky sits crying. Her husband, a disabled World War II veteran, shuffles around, angry. Rivka Yudin is reading a Sherlock Holmes book, and only her husband, Grigory, says that everything is all right, all we have to do is win the war. He is also certain this is possible.

Abandoned in Tiberias:

The situation is similar in Tiberias, Mayor Zohar Oved told Absorption Minister director general Mirale Gal at a meeting last Friday. His report was interrupted by a siren, followed by the tense wait for the landing. Only afterward could the mayor continue explaining the unique situation facing the immigrants in his city, who are sequestered most of the time in shelters, not realizing that others have abandoned them, and the city.

Even without such awareness, which will eventually hit them, a deep feeling of being refugees permeates the shelter in the absorption center for Ethiopian immigrants in Tiberias. The shelter, part of which is a converted storage room, now holds some 270 people, half of them children, in a surrealistic atmosphere.

A strange dimness hangs everywhere; the fans scarcely alleviate the stifling heat and the oppressive crowdedness. The shelter's single television blares the latest news in Hebrew. Gadi, a veteran immigrant, translates for those whose sense of isolation increases their anxiety.

One group in the shelter only arrived in Israel on July 6, barely a week before the war erupted on their new doorstep. Theresa Mutoko and her two daughters spent seven years in the transit camp in Addis Ababa. "It was harder there," she says. "There was no war, but we wanted to come here so much. Here they are taking care of us. God is taking care of us."

Perhaps there is something in her words. While we were conversing in the cramped shelter, a Katyusha landed in the empty soccer field at an absorption center for Ethiopian immigrants in Haifa. The building was damaged, but no one was hurt.

Apart from divine providence, there are some individuals and organizations that are helping the newcomers. Indeed, immigrants who live in concentrated groupings in apartments or absorption centers are in better shape than others. Here there are support systems close at hand. The others, tens of thousands of residents of the north, are all alone. One elderly couple from Carmiel, for example, were alone in a building that was hit until they were discovered by Deputy Mayor Rina Greenberg, who moved them in with another local family.

"The immigrants have a special problem," she explains, drawing on her own rich experience. "The Soviet regime taught them not to trust and not to rely on anyone. So they don't trust anyone here either. Sometimes it is hard to overcome that lack of trust."

Refuge in the Gush:

Some 200 immigrants from Carmiel are currently staying in Gush Etzion. Some are being housed in the dormitories of hesder yeshivas (which combine army service and religious studies), while others are being hosted by families. Suddenly "the territories" are a safe haven.

Svetlana and Maxim Packard, along with their three-year-old son Igor, arrived in Israel to settle in Carmiel just a week before the fighting began. "Everything happens in life," they say philosophically, thankful to their hosts in Gush Etzion, who are enveloping them with love. [Thank G-d, my wonderful grandson, Noam, lives in Tel Aviv and has welcomed Staey, Heidi & their children into his home, albeit he, himself, is not able to stay with them, since he is one of the 8,000 Israeli reserve soldiers who was called up to serve in the north, this week!!!!]

As time goes by, some problems worsen, while others disappear. A week into the fighting, the Home Front Command appointed a Russian-speaking spokesman to relay information to Reka, the radio station broadcasts in Russian. The Absorption Ministry has also found a way to transfer payments to new immigrants, even though its offices in the north are closed.

But what about the elderly cardiac patient recently released from hospital after an operation, alone now in Kiryat Shmona without his medication? Or the fact that the Russian-language newspapers are not reaching their readership, adding further to their feelings of isolation. Where will the money be found for some fun outing for children who have not had a break from the furor and noise, and are too shell-shocked to go anywhere without their parents?

While traveling from one Katyusha-damaged town to another, Gal searches for immediate solutions to these problems. Every time she solves one, another crops up in its place. The municipalities, which are actually functioning very impressively, are now beginning to collapse under the burden, and sometimes from the complaints.

There are some towns in which the veteran residents are envious of the aid being extended to the immigrants. In mixed Jewish and Arab towns, the help given to the immigrants bothers the Arabs. [And yet, the exact same help is being given to all of Israeli Arabs!!!!]

Even the feeling of a shared fate and the impressive wave of volunteerism cannot dispel the constant social tensions that still exist, and which may actually be the only remnants of normalcy left.


Diaspora solidarity missions say 'Israel is safe':
By Hilary Leila Krieger -- Jerusalem Post -- July 24, 2006

American Jews seem to be more united in their backing for Israel than at any time since the Six Day War, according to Jewish leader Malcolm Hoenlein.

Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, was speaking at a press conference in Jerusalem Sunday at the start of a three-day solidarity tour. But even as he and other Jewish groups come on solidarity missions, donate funds and rally in support of Israel, North American Jews are cancelling plans to visit Israel.

"You always have people who postpone trips because of a [violent] situation. It's not just true in Israel. It's true anywhere where a conflict situation arises. It's understandable, but it's containable and I hope that we can reverse the current trend," he said. "The goal of solidarity missions [is to] get others to follow and understand that it's safe to come to Israel."

He has brought 50 people, including conference chairman Harold Tanner, along with him on one of several missions of international Jewish leadership coming to bolster Israel while it's under attack from Hizbullah.

Some two dozen representatives from the European Jewish Congress and EU countries also arrived Sunday, along with a 70-member group from the United Jewish Communities.

The UJC is just one of many Diaspora Jewish organizations to raise money for beleaguered Israelis in northern Israel. The umbrella group has already allocated $10 million to the cause and expects to commit more, in addition to having started a $1.5 million campaign with American synagogues to cover the cost of air conditioners and televisions for bomb shelters up north. The American Jewish Committee has, to date, raised $200,000 in an emergency fund-raising drive, and the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, The American Joint Distribution Committee, the Jewish Agency and others have set up special programs to help residents up north, particularly children.

On Sunday, Hoenlein announced an initiative to help sustain the tourism sector in the north, which has been shut down since the violence broke out. The "virtual tourism" plan, being run in cooperation with the Prime Minister's Office, Galilee Development Corporation and Israel Hotel Association, encourages foreigners to pay for nights in hotels and bed and breakfasts throughout northern Israel. Instead of reserving specific dates, however, customers simply receive a voucher which they will be able to use any time in the next year. The concept is to allow hotels and B&Bs to continue to receive income to avoid closing even if their guests won't arrive until much later on.

Raphael Farber, vice president of the Israel Hotels Association, said the initiative was a "great idea" - so long as hoteliers received adequate rates for their rooms. He accused American solidarity missions of often demanding rock bottom prices at the hotels they stay at. [And, to think that just two weeks ago, tourists were complaining about Israeli hotels giving Israelis, who can't afford expensive vacations, cheaper rates than they were giving to tourists!!!!]

"Solidarity missions are a nice wording for 'taking advantage,'" he said. "This is not solidarity. This is just going to Israel cheaply." He also said that, "To our sorrow, the Jews are the first to cancel. [We need] major research to understand why Jews are afraid to come to Israel. I don't understand. This is the time to show their empathy to the State of Israel and the people of Israel. And really there is no reason to be afraid."

But Mark Feldman, managing director of Zion Tours, which has a large North American clientele, rejected the notion that American Jews cancel first. "It's not that true a stereotype because in the last intifada, so much was pushed onto Americans that they have to come support us," he said. "The cancellations run across the board." [Mark is a friend of mine, but I must disagree with him on this!!!! When working at a tourist Gallery in Safed, I noticed that, in times of crisis, lots of tourists continued to come here.....from every other country, but NO Americans would come!!!!]

But cancelling they are. Feldman said 60 to 65 percent of his North American customers have cancelled, while he gave the number of new reservations as: "Zero." He explained that tourists planning vacations don't want to feel confined to just the parts of the country where rockets haven't fallen. "Honestly, most of us in this country understand it at this stage," he said.

He added that he had been contacted by American Jews looking to help Israel rather than exploit the situation. "There's already an outcry of individuals [asking], 'What do you need? How can we help?' Nobody's trying to take advantage," he said.

The support isn't limited to financial measures. The Jewish community in Britain held a thousands-strong rally in London Sunday to show support for Israel. Israeli Ambassador Zvi Haifetz and Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks were among those on the list of speakers. The event followed a large anti-Israel protest held earlier Sunday.

Demonstrations have already been held in cities through the United States and more are scheduled, according to Hoenlein.

"We're seeing broad-based support for Israel among young and old, perhaps more than at any time since 1967," he said. "There's a broad mobilization of support." [For this we all thank YOU!!!!]

Sandy Rosen-Hazen lives in Safed. Contact her at Sandy@israel.net

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Posted by Lee Caplan, July 24, 2006.

This is absolutely unacceptable. Please fax a letter to the court manager as directed below, and please also let the Israeli consulate know how you feel about this outrage. These two girls had been present at the protest in Hevron when the IDF was building a wall around the house of a terrorist which had been used for unleashing terrorist activities.


This letter was sent today from mattotarim@eretz.org.

Help Oriya: she's about to go to jail for FOUR MONTHS for doing... nothing!

Remember our ninth grader friend, Oriya? She was charged of being present at a demonstration at which other people (not her) purportedly behaved in an unruly manner. Unlike Dana Olmert (daughter of PM Olmert), who did exactly the same thing, Oriya has been in jail ever since this demonstration. Unlike Dana Olmert, she is not an adult -- she just graduated 9th grade. What's the news? Judge Ben-Dor found a way, today, to keep her in jail for four more months. The method is, to set the date of her trial for 4 long months from now -- which allows him to keep her in prison until that time. The prosecutor (who is supposed to be the bad guy -- the judge is supposed to be neutral...) was flabbergasted and urged the judge to please make the trial much sooner so Oriyah can get out of jail already. But the judge refused to allow this.

Worse: A friend of Oriya's who was at the same demonstration, is about to go through the same procedure tomorrow, with the same judge. Therefore, we ask that you IMMEDIATELY fax your protest to the courthouse where Judge Ben-Dor presides. The fax number of the court manager ("menahel") is 02-6706572. Your fax should say something like:

To the "menahel" (manager) of the courthouse. It is my understanding that Judge Ben-Dor of this courthouse sent a ninth grader to jail for four months yesterday, for demonstrating. This is totally unjust. I am extremely concerned because a judge who makes irrational decisions cannot command respect from any reasonable person. I believe that it is your duty to immediately take whatever steps are necessary to extricate this girl from the bizarre Kafkaesque situation in which she finds herself in light of this mysterious ruling on the part of Judge Ben-Dor.

Thank you so much.

It is better to write in your own words than to exactly copy the above text. Your assistance is MUCH appreciated.

Contact Lee Caplan at lesscaplan@yahoo.com

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Posted by Naomi Ragen, July 24, 2006.

[Editor's Note: Naomi Ragen's "Notes I" can be read below.]

This is what we see on our evening news: reserve units massing at the front, waiting to go in tomorrow morning. "I was sitting at my kitchen table Saturday morning when I got the call-up. I was on my way an hour later." Another soldier: "I wasn't called up. But my commanding officer asked me to come. He wanted the best men in the unit to come. We are all here. We've been doing this for twenty years. I thought we'd finished with them. But I guess not." On a small hill, another reserve soldier, who is getting married in two months, speaks on a cell phone to his fiance. His face is troubled as he tries to comfort her:"Nothing will happen to me. I'll be back soon. You'll see. It will be all right."

Nearby, young soldiers put their arms around each other and sing. "We are ready to go! We will take care of them, don't worry," they smile at the cameras.

Elsewhere, in Netanya, a soldier's rest and recreation hotel has been hosting families from the North. They crowd into the small rooms, the bunkbeds. They dry the families laundry on chairs. On the top bunk, a young woman from Shlomi, pregnant with her first baby, wipes tears from her eyes. Unlike the others, she is here alone. "My husband is back in Shlomi. I don't know when I'll give birth, or where. I don't know anything."

A delegation of Christians from around the world check into an empty Haifa hotel, dafka. "The people of Israel are very wise. They are very brave. I'm glad to be here among them," a woman from India says. People from the Netherlands, and the Cameroons have come, staying in places Israelis won't.

In Acre, forty strangers have prepared a communal bomb shelter to house them each night. Wall to wall mattresses. Children all over the place. "We've become like a family."

A soldier sent an SMS message to his father: "I've been wounded, but I'm all right." The father headed up to the front, and found his son injured, but not too badly.

Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist and journalist who lives in Jerusalem. She can be contacted at www.naomiragen.com, where you can subscribe to her newsletter.

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 24, 2006.

This article was written by Suzanne Fields and it appeared in Jewish World Review
(http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/fields072406.php3) today entitled "Appeasing contempt of the Jews."

A powerful wake-up call and reminder

They're caricatured with hooknoses and humpbacks, as sucking up a sow's excrement, murdering children for their blood in a recipe for matzoh. They're scorned for being weak and sneered at for being strong, for passivity and aggression, for segregating themselves and for assimilating to disappear among their secular neighbors. They're too studious or merely stupid, obsessed with cleanliness or living in filth, hated for their industry and reviled for their sloth. They're condemned as greedy capitalists and naive communists, as reactionaries and radicals, patriotic nationalists and secular internationalists, for being stateless and for building a thriving state.

Jews are persecuted when they don't convert and persecuted when they do. The converted are accused of hating themselves, and the unconverted are accused of hating everybody else. Seneca, the Roman tragedian, expressed annoyance at Roman Jews for their observance of a ritual Sabbath: "This meant that Jews were wasting one-seventh of their lives doing nothing."

Now the Jews of Israel, doing what they have to do to survive, are accused of "acting out of proportion" to the daily assault of Iranian rockets fired by Hezbollah to kill Jews in their homes. The Jews should show restraint. Restraint was what the Jews in Germany showed when the Nazis were organizing the Holocaust and the world wouldn't believe that what was happening was happening. Restraint is what the rest of the world showed when they dismissed a crazy Austrian paperhanger and his nutty book, "Mein Kampf." If the rest of the world was willing to ignore Hitler and his boasting and bloviating, why couldn't the Jews?

Restraint is what you show in disputes with rational people who are willing to compromise, who will give up something in return for something. But restraint can buy time for your uncompromising enemies to enable them to plot the ambush to kill you later. During the Holocaust, certain Jewish leaders, eager to show restraint by trusting their enemies, gave up lists of Jews, a few at a time, to save others a little while longer.

Ariel Sharon, showing restraint, organized the withdrawal from Gaza as a way to achieve peace through strength, a controversial idea but nevertheless credible. You could call it aggressive restraint. All that was wrong with it was that it didn't work and was perceived as weakness by the enemies of Israel. The only thing Israel got was more rockets on its cities, the elevation of Hamas to power and the kidnapping of its soldiers standing duty in Israeli territory. " When you keep pinching a lion," Jeffrey Gedmin, director of the Aspen Institute in Berlin, writes in Die Welt, the German daily, "sooner or later he'll clobber you with his paw."

Throughout history, others have had a lot of advice for the Jews, cheap at the price. America aside, there was not much else. Anti-Semitism is often personal, and always political. The anti-Semites get away with acting on their prejudice because there's a political environment where spin is appreciated. Anti-Zionism, the legitimate criticism of Israel politics and policy, is not always anti-Semitism. But it usually is. Once upon a time, the world's sympathy rested with the Jews. The United Nations approved the creation of Israel; the Jews had suffered so much in the early decades of the 20th century. Israel gave the Jews a new identity, an opportunity to create a country by working the land, bringing it to flower and training men (and women) to fight back when attacked. They succeeded beyond their dreams, beyond the nightmares of their critics. When Israelis survived in the wars of 1948, 1964 and 1967, no thanks to restraint, their global supporters began to fall away. Jews were easier to feel sorry for when they couldn't fight back.

"Nathan the Wise," an 18th-century German play by Gotthold Lessing, depicts a flattering portrait of Moses Mendelssohn, the playwright's famous Jewish friend. When the Sultan Saladin asks Nathan, the Moses figure, to explain his identity, Nathan replies simply: Ich bin ein Mensch -- "I am a man." This line infuriated Hannah Arendt, writing about it after the Holocaust. It characterized the Jew in a private, personal way, she said, ignoring his specific identity subject to political vulnerability. She knew what the Israelis have had to learn the hard way. For a Jew, being a man is not good enough unless it's backed up by the power to survive.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by B'Ahavat Yisrael, July 24, 2006.

For almost two weeks, residents of Northern Israel have been showered with hundreds of katyusha missiles fired at them by Hizbullah terrorists. Some have already lost their lives and many have been injured. As a result, Northern residents find themselves holed up in bomb shelters for inordinate lengths of time, stores are shut down and activity outside is severely limited. Acquiring needed goods is practically impossible.

B'Ahavat Yisrael representatives are going out to these areas and providing the residents with badly needed supplies that they find almost impossible to get themselves while under an almost constant barrage of missiles - from games to occupy their children while sitting in the bomb shelters to diapers for their babies. Our next delivery is scheduled for this coming Thursday. How much we can give these residents depends on how much funds we can accumulate.

Please join B'Ahavat Yisrael and stretch out your hand to these beleaguered residents of Northern Israel in their time of need. United we shall overcome. FOR DONATIONS -

In US (tax deductible), send to:
Friends of B'Ahavat Yisrael
4809 Avenue N, PMB# 284
Brooklyn, NY 11234

In Israel, send to:
B'Ahavat Yisrael
P.O. Box 70539
Bet Shemesh

For donations by Credit Card:
link to -

Contact B'Ahavat Israel by email at admin@bahavatyisrael.org or go their website http://www.bahavatyisrael.org

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Posted by AFSI, July 24, 2006.

Dear Friends and supporters,

This is the detailed program of the major event in NYC, of the event that will be held simultaneously in Jerusalem and the list of the congregations organizing similar programs of support to Israel and remembrance of Gush Katif around the U.S.A and few countries around the world.

Almost one year ago, August 2005, 10,000 Jews from the 21 communities of Gush Katif/Gaza were expelled from their homes and sent out to find new homes, new jobs, new farms, new schools, new youth centers, new synagogues, and new lives. The majority are still trying to rebuild their destroyed lives.

One year later, July and August, 2006, there are now hundreds of thousands of refugees forced to flee their homes in the northern cities because of the daily bombardment from Hezbollah rockets and missiles. They are streaming into central and southern Israel, filling homes and schools in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the Negev. Dror Vanunu reports that "Many families from the north are being hosted in the crowded caravans of the Gush Katif evacuees. Understanding the trauma of losing one's home, many Gush Katif adults and youth have traveled north to help prepare bomb shelters and deliver aid to the adults. The Gush youth of the caravan community of Nitzan, near Ashkelon, organized activities for hundreds of children from the north to give them a feeling of warmth and security, fully understanding their feelings of displacement, homelessness and fear."

Join us in one of these events!
Be there for us. Be there for Israel.


The Fifth Ave., Synagogue, 5 E. 62nd Street in New York City, will be the scene on Tuesday, August 1, 8 P.M., of an evening of:


The speakers will include the Chairman of Americans For a Safe Israel/AFSI HERBERT ZWEIBON, former AFSI Director HELEN FREEDMAN, ZOA President MORT KLEIN, resident of Shilo BATYA MEDAD, International Coordinator for Gush Katif DROR VANUNU, and more. Music and an important new video will round out the program.

At this critical juncture in Israel's history, it is vital that Jews of every persuasion come together in support of Israel's valiant battle against the forces that would destroy it. Diaspora Jews are not on the front lines fighting the enemy. We must therefore respond to the humanitarian needs of our brothers and sisters in Israel by providing moral and financial support. Information about funding will be distributed at the Aug. 1 event.

Contact Americans For a Safe Israel/AFSI,
with your questions or comments.

The following is a list of commemorative events that will be held in congregations and communities. We wish to thank all of the Rabbis and heads of the congregations for taking part in the commemoration of the destruction of Gush Katif and hosting these events. Your concern is precious for all of the evacuated families of Gush Katif.

To: Rabbi Peretz Dinovitz, Rabbi Herzl Kranz and Rabbi Yaacov Benamou for hosting their respective events and to Rabbi Moshe Hauer, Rabbi Elan Adler and Rabbi Ira Hisler for their continuing support. Many thanks also to Rebecca Chesner, Ruth Goetz, Helaine Bonder, Ron Logee and David Stein for their help in making these events a reality.

Tuesday, August 1st.
Rabbi Herzel Kranz - Silver Spring Jewish Center
1401 Arcola Road, Silver Spring, MD
Mincha 8:00 PM, Maariv at 8:15 PM,
Gush Katif Program to follow.

Monday, July 31, at 7:30 PM
Moses Montefiore Anshe Emunah Hebrew Congregation
7000 Rockland Hills Drive
Mincha at 7:15 PM, Maariv to follow,
followed by the Gush Katif program
Dror Vanunu, the International Coordinator for the Gush Katif Committee will be the guest speaker at this event.

Tuesday, August 1, 2006, at 7:00 PM
Ohel Yakov Congregation,
3200 Glen Avenue (between Highgate Drive and Winner Avenue)
Mincha at 6:30 PM, Maariv
and Gush Katif program to follow

Thursday, August 3, 2006, at 12 PM -- noon
Jewish Rockville Outreach Congregation (JROC)
11418 Old Georgetown Road (Aish Building)
For more information go to:

TO BE ANNOUNCED: -- http://www.JewishROC.org

CALL: FOR Future events In Washington, DC, Potomac and Baltimore, Maryland

In Baltimore: Rebecca Chesner 410 484-3568 or Ruth Goetz 410 484-0538

In Silver Spring or Rockville: Fran Hisler: 301 424-1234 or Tova Abady 917 301 0997


  • Sunday, July 30th Evening Congregation Shaarei Tefila 7269 Beverly Blvd (at Poinsettia Pl.) Hancock Park, CA 90036 (323) 938-7147

  • Thursday, August 3rd (Tisha B'Av afternoon) Aish Los Angeles 1417 South Doheny Drive Los Angeles, CA 90035 (310) 278-8672

  • Thursday, August 24th 7:30pm Nessah Israel Congregation 142 S. Rexford Drive Beverly Hills, CA 90212 (310) 273-2400


The commemorative event in Paris will take place after the summer vacation. Further details about the date and the place will follow.


A Few private meetings will be held throughout the country. For further information: gro-wen@online.no

We ask all our supporters and friends to take part in one of these commemorative events or visit us at www.katifund.org for updated information and our latest film:

"Remembering the past, Building the future"
Even miles away, show your support and care,


tens of thousands are expected to participate in a series of events throughout the day

"Remember the Past, Build the Future"

Hundreds of thousands are expected to attend the
Commemoration in Jerusalem
Tuesday, 7th of Av. (August 1st, 2006)



At 8:00 Gathering at the Kissufim(Yearnings) border Message from the youth of Gush Katif Departure for Jerusalem with the Gush Katif Sefer Torah

From 10:30 to 16:00. Binyanei A'huma Convention Center.

Personal testimonies, films, theater play, artistic photographs exhibition, conferences.

Gathering together...
From 15:30 at the Atsmaut Park

"Remember the past. Build the future"

The public is invited to an exhibit of Gush Katif and North Shomron, depicting 35 years in the life of the pioneers and their accomplishments.

The exhibit will focus on the development of Gush Katif in agriculture, education, community and Torah life together with the traumatic moments of the struggle and the expulsion throughout the plight of the expellees during this past year.

We wish to express the beauty of Gush Katif as well as the strong spirit that leads us to rebuild and dream again.

We will complete the writing of the Gush Katif Sefer Torah Procession to the Kotel (Western Wall)

We Pledge...

At 19:00 at the Western Wall. Prayer for the welfare of our soldiers and the residents of Northern Israel

The Gush Katif Sefer Torah will be kept at the Kotel until B'H, Am Israel returns to Gush Katif and to all parts of Eretz Israel.

We ask you to join us and participate in the writing of the Sefer Torah

One letter: $18
One word: $72
One verse: $180
For credit card donations: 800-410-15-02 or Click here for online donations.

Or please send checks to:

Friends of Gush Katif
P.O.B. 1184
Teaneck, NJ 07666


Dror Vanunu
International Coordinator
Gush Katif Committee

Americans For a Safe Israel/AFSI is a pro-active pro-Israel advocacy group. AFSI may be contacted by mail at 1623 Third Ave., Suite 205, New York, N.Y. 10128 (Tel: 212-828-2424; Fax: 212-828-1717); by email at afsi@rcn.com; or by accessing its website: www.afsi.org. Barry Freedman is Executive Director.

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Posted by Lawrence Uniglicht, July 24, 2006.

Israel's Defense Minister Amir Peretz says his nation is interested in the deployment of a NATO-led military force along the Israel Lebanon border. Hmmm! How thick is this aforementioned border? Will such a border patrol insure that no long-range missiles be fired into a seemingly vulnerable Jewish State from within Lebanon, outside of the force's jurisdiction? Will such a border patrol monitor the transport of such deadly rockets, as well as other weaponry, into Lebanon from terror promoting regimes such as Iran and Syria? No doubt, international troops will act as a deterrent against belligerent Hizbullah jihadist troops along a volatile land border, but how might Israel be shielded from incoming missiles of perhaps mass destruction?

No lasting peaceful solution can be maintained between tiny Israel and its hostile neighbors unless and until all jihad obsessed terrorist organizations are outlawed, disarmed, its rabid leaders incarcerated or put to sleep. Period! A human body is not cancer free unless and until all metastasized tumors and cells are extracted or destroyed; planet Earth will not be terrorist free unless and until all jihad junkies are incarcerated or facilitated in a delusional quest to meet their war-monger prophet in Allahland paradise, choc full of compliant virginal females. Indeed, it is presciently prudent to preempt any anticipated martyr-driven homicidal/suicidal attempts, current or future, nipping such criminally insane mind-sets in the bud by whatever means necessary. Surely, a border patrol, acting as a temporary palliative, would not be up to such a task.

Civilized secular planetary movers and shakers, perhaps quivering at prospects of the extortion-laced pronouncement "No fossil fuel for you" by turban adorned oil-nazis, alas always attempt to cover gaping wounds with band-aids. Indeed, short-term corporate bottom-lines always trump long-term sensible bottom-lines predicated on cleaning out the filth. Surely, merely tinkering with a frame cannot repair an evolving cerebrally painted second millennium masterpiece, if streaked with jihadist graffiti. If an international coalition of "honorable" nations seriously strives to stop the bleeding between Israel and Lebanon, it will initially deploy troops throughout the Hizbullah infected nation, confiscating or destroying every weapon, including all missiles, the terrorist network possesses. Furthermore, every influential person associated with that jihadist cadre must be neutralized i.e. jailed or put to sleep. Such a strategy can serve as a paradigm for dealing with terrorist organizations worldwide. Regimes that support such organizations must be substantially sanctioned as well.

Okay, stop dreaming, the likelihood of civil secular nations today truly taking the fundamentalist intolerant Islamic jihadist bull by the horns, is equivalent to the likelihood of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Ehud Olmert dancing a Hora in Tehran or Jerusalem anytime soon. It will not happen unless such civil secular nations both experience and recognize the consequences of uncontested jihad. The horrific toppling of mighty World Trade Towers bludgeoned the soul of America with jihad's evil club, but a strategically inept preemptive invasion of Iraq dilutes former resolve to fight the good but costly fight. Bizarrely, devastating bombings in Madrid and London have not fully awakened those victimized civil nations enough to fight the good but costly fight as well. Apparently, such "wake up calls" are not recognized as such. Thus temporary fixes such as international border patrols are discussed, perhaps enough to douse one raging fire, but surely not sufficient to prevent the "inferno from hell" yet to be ignited.

Lawrence Uniglicht is a career civil servant, working for the Social Security Administration. He advocates for the State of Israel with an American perspective. He writes, "Advocating for the disrespected underdog has been my passion, no doubt Israel falls into that category." Contact him by email at luniglicht@snip.net

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Posted by Dave Nathan, July 24, 2006.

Israeli forces have pushed forward from the mountaintop village of Maroun er Ras captured Sunday to the fringes of Bint Jubeil, Hizballah's south Lebanese capital. Monday they suffered nine wounded in face to face combat. Whereas TV cameras showed much footage of the Maroun er Ras engagement, the IDF's other battle pockets are kept under wraps.

Hizballah chief Hassan Nasrallah, who has an overall view, warned Israel in an interview to the Lebanese A Safir Monday, July 24, that its ground incursions in Lebanon would not stop Hizballah rocket fire against its cities.

He certainly meant this as a morale-depressant for Israel troops. At the same time, DEBKAfile's military experts say that what he says is correct and must be taken into account in any diplomatic formula sought to end the warfare.

1. He could go on firing his rockets even when a multinational force is posted on the Lebanese-Israeli border. The force currently contemplated by Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert at this early stage of international diplomacy would consist of German, French and Czech units.

2. And even if multinational troops were deployed additionally on the Lebanese-Syrian border, they would not hamper Hizballah's rocket offensive. Therefore a buffer zone would offer no solution to a cessation of cross-border hostilities.

DEBKAfile's military analysts say that the way the Israel-Hizballah war has been prosecuted up until Monday, July 24, is more likely to bring Nassrallah closer to his war objectives than Olmert.

Notwithstanding the IDF's important battle gains at a number of focal South Lebanese points in the last 24 hours -- including the latest raids on the outskirts of Bint Jubeil on the heels of the capture of Maroun er Ras -- only one multiple firing rocket launcher (picture) and 6 single-barrel launchers have been destroyed.

This figure will certainly multiply substantially in the coming days. Yet it will not change the essential strategic picture or stop the rocket fire from holding northern Israel and more than a million inhabitants to siege.

Last week, Israel's army chiefs believed they had encountered Hizballah's primary war tactic -- Viet Cong-style guerrilla warfare out of hundreds of small bunkers scattered across the country. This week had scarcely begun when a still more formidable impediment was discovered: Hizballah camouflage techniques borrowed from the Japanese in the 1945 Iwo Jima battle. To stop the rockets coming, Israeli special forces must continue to blow up the tunnels and also adopt the methods the US Army's methods for overcoming the Japanese dug in at Iwo Jima and other Pacific islands at the end of World War II. Without regard to losses, they stormed Japanese dug-in positions and camouflaged units. using flame throwers and gasoline to burn the foliage concealing the enemy.

DEBKAfile's military sources report that Israeli military chiefs have just begun studying Hizballah's arts of camouflage. A senior officer told DEBKAfile grimly:

"Now we know that when a stand of five or six trees suddenly starts walking, we are seeing a 14-barreled Fajr 3 rocket launcher on the move; one or two trees in motion may conceal a couple of Hizballah fighters."

But the situation is more difficult when the trees or bushes stand still and blend in with the surrounding dense foliage. By the time IDF spotters report five suspicious trees or bushes to overhead aircraft, helicopters or the nearest ground units, the Hizballah launchers or the fighters have moved on and changed their camouflage outfits. The small Israeli special operations units called in to hunt and destroy the last-seen mobile vegetation face a mystifying task.

"This is a high-precision operation," said the officer. "It is time-consuming -- could take weeks if not months - dangerous and calls for larger numbers of troops than we have available."

In the first ten days of the war, therefore, the Israeli air force bombed out empty Hizballah premises in South Beirut and Baalbek, but missed the moving woods and vegetation which concealed the rocket launchers -- which explains why the blitz continued notwithstanding heavy Israeli air force assaults on Hizballah's centers and strongholds.

But Israel military strategists have got a handle on Hizballah's rocket-launching methods. Each rocket crew, carefully camouflaged, advances independently to its firing position and fires a volley, never a single rocket. If one crew chances on another, they all loose their rockets simultaneously.

DEBKAfile's military analysts assert that the rocket offensive against Israel will go on for the following reasons:

1. While the IDF has begun to understand Hizballah's tactics and methods of warfare, the Olmert government has decided to deny the operation sufficient ground troops to come to grips with the small knots of moving rocket crewmen.

Some of DEBKAfile's military experts fear the Israeli government may be falling into the Bush administration's disastrous error of allocating too few troops to the Iraq war for attaining its goals.

2. Iran is constantly pumping through Syria fresh rocket teams to replace those wiped out by Israeli forces.

3. Hizballah's leader wants no part in the diplomatic initiatives led by US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice in conjunction with the Europeans, Olmert, the Lebanese government and moderate Sunni Arab rulers. Nasrallah is playing his own game and will not be a party to a ceasefire at this point or stop firing his rockets -- except on his terms.

4. He will show the same contempt for a multinational force, however effective, deployed on Lebanon's borders with Israel and Syria, and simply keep on shooting.

He knows as well as anyone that German or French troops will never go chasing through Lebanon's woods and hay stacks to tackle his fighters in face-to-face combat.

He may not stick to as many as 100 rockets a day -- as at present, but he will keep his hand on the button and push it whenever it suits him.

Nasrallah will only end the war when he can claim victory -- or is finally eliminated.

Most Israeli generals agree that going for a multinational force, which appears to be the direction seriously contemplated by Ehud Olmert, would constitute a repeat of the blunder Ariel Sharon and Olmert himself perpetrated when, in their haste to evacuate the Gaza Strip last summer, they handed security over the Gazan-Egyptian Philadelphi border to Egyptian forces and the crossing to European monitors.

Nasrallah has already struck the pose of victor and is dictating terms. Monday, July 24, he handed the Lebanese government a list of the prisoners in Israeli jails whom he wants released as the price for returning the kidnapped Israeli soldiers, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev. He has not budged an inch from his initial demand for their release: indirect negotiations for a prisoner swap.

The Israeli prime minister, who has switched his war objectives several times, is heading for a course that may at best restore the three abducted Israeli solders, Gilead Shalit in Hamas' hands, as well as Goldwasser and Regev.

But this course will not rescue northern Israel and a third of the country from the nightmare of rockets falling night and day and destroying their lives or the Palestinian Qassam missiles from Gaza making life intolerable for Israel's south.

Contact Dave Nathan at davenathan@aol.com

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Posted by Sanda Abramovici, July 24, 2006.

Keep this story in mind when you watch television and read newspapers reporting on the Middle East.

This appeared on the PowerLine blogsite.

Joel Mowbray (email: jdmowbra@erols.com) has returned to the United States from his trip to Israel. We filed seven dispatches by Joel from Israel. Today Joel reports on his return:

Before arriving in South Florida this weekend, I had heard from several friends in the area that the Miami Herald was providing slanted coverage of the war in the Middle East. I had visited the web site, but that was largely a collection of wire stories.

Then I saw Saturday's paper. The most prominent headline on the front page, in the center, above-the-fold, was "The human cost of war." Immediately below was surprisingly brazen bias. Before I describe more, look for yourself.

Notice a few things:

1) the women are clearly distraught, and even more clearly Muslim;

2) not only are they civilians, but they are older, almost helpless looking;

3) the photo of the mourning Lebanese women is above the fold, whereas the photo of the Israeli is below and half the size;

4) the Israeli photo is of a soldier, and his weapon is clearly visible;

5) the captions could easily have been written by the folks at al-Manar, the Hezbollah TV network. The photo of elderly Lebanese women is captioned, "Overwhelmed by Loss." For the Israeli soldier, his photo simply receives, "Farewell."

It's more than a tad disconcerting that I even needed to write all of the above. Simply showing the scan of the front page should be enough, but it's not. We've become so inured to relentless bias that heavy-handed contrivances often escape serious scrutiny.

Though more flagrant than most, the Herald's gross distortions are not a dramatic outlier in mainstream media coverage. The photo of grieving Lebanese women was distributed by Agence France Press, and in fact, it received wide circulation. The Miami Herald merely made matters worse with the page layout and captions.

Palestinians have for years masterfully manipulated the media coverage, most powerfully through choreographed imagery. With this photo, Hezbollah has ripped a page from the Palestinian playbook.

Could one imagine a more staged performance? Why are the caskets lined up like that, side-by-side? Why are numbers spray-painted on the wall? And why are the women in the very narrow gap between the caskets and the wall, as opposed to being in the far more natural position of standing facing both the caskets and the wall directly behind them?

Though anyone with even a passing familiarity with the Palestinian propaganda machine would have a gut sense that the photo was staged, anyone with a basic knowledge of Arabic would know so. Why? Look at the numbers. Those are not Arabic numerals. According to Brigitte Gabriel of American Congress for the Truth, who was born and raised in Lebanon, numbers written in Lebanese shops or newspapers would be Arabic numerals.

a modern Arabic phone keypad, with Arabic & Western numerals side-by-side.

Those numbers, in other words, were written purely for Western consumption.

There's no question that ordinary Lebanese are suffering because of the serious damage done to their civilian infrastructure. But were there no scenes of actual suffering that the photographer could have captured? Or was the real thing just not as gripping?

Contact Sanda Abramovici at sab@telefonica.net.pe

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 24, 2006.

To be added to this the HUNDREDS in Efrat, Qiryat Arba and all the area of the South Hebron Hills Settlements.

This article was written by Hillel Fendel, senior news editor at Arutz Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com). It was published today.

800 refugees from northern Israel - they hope to return to their homes soon but cannot be sure - have moved into Gush Etzion. Despite initial fears, they now feel, as one of them said, "100% safe."

Shani Simkovitz, Director of the Gush Etzion Foundation, told IsraelNationalRadio's Yishai Fleisher and Alex Traiman today that the Foundation - and the residents of Gush Etzion - are overseeing the large and difficult undertaking with happiness and idealism.

Most of the refugee newcomers are relatively new immigrants from Russia who now live in Carmiel and environs - areas that have been plagued with dozens or more Katyusha missiles over the past two weeks. Living cooped-up in small, poorly-ventilated and ill-equipped shelters was not a realistic option, at least not for days at a time - and the people of Gush Etzion came through with the alternative: "Come live with us!"

Many of the refugees appeared bewildered as they disembarked from the buses, carrying their most necessary belongings in one suitcase or less. Slowly but surely, however, they began to feel at home - despite what they had heard about "the territories" beforehand.

One woman, filmed on Channel Two television news, said, "We were told that Efrat was just ten minutes from Jerusalem - but here we were on these curved roads, traveling, traveling, traveling - and all of a sudden, my goodness! Tunnels! It was the Tunnels Road! It suddenly hit me that we were in the shtachim - the territories! What have we come to, that in order to escape the Katyushas, we had to come to the shtachim!"

In the tongue-in-cheek words of one of the many volunteers, the woman then "totally redeemed herself" by saying, "And here we feel 100% safe!"

The refugees have been put up in yeshiva dormitories in Efrat and other Gush Etzion locations, while the many volunteers help out with cooking, laundry, children's activities, friendship, and more. Recreation and trips have also been arranged.

"There are many aspects of Kiddush Hashem [Sanctification of G-d] involved in this venture," Shani said, "such as their being exposed to religious people, Torah learning and to Yesha [Judea and Samaria] for the first time."

But, of course, nothing comes for free. The Gush Etzion Foundation estimates that the costs - utilities, food, trips, etc. - have reached $6,500 each day.

To help, Contact The Gush Etzion Foundation.

In the U.S:
Gush Etzion Foudnation
POB 1030
Manchester, NH 03105
tel: 603-623-1212
fax: 603-627-0029

In Israel:
Keren Gush Etzion
Alon Shvut
D.N. North Judea
Israel 90433
tel: 972-2-993-9917
fax: 972-2-993-2169

Contact Sergio Tessa (HaDaR) at HaDaR-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by Matthias Küntzel, July 24, 2006.

The natural reaction to the current violence in the Middle East is one of horror. It's time for a cease-fire, right? Not necessarily. Pacifism would only help the radicals.

When it comes to Israel, public opinion in Europe walks a fine line. Israel's overreaction and use of overwhelming force, say most, is to be condemned and criticized. But in the same breath, Hezbollah's provocation is likewise reviled and rejected as the militant group's unceasing attacks on Israeli civilians are cited. Both sides are judged using the same criteria and both sides come out stained with some blame for the current conflagration.

But this seemingly nuanced point of view is misleading. In reality, German and European public opinion does take sides -- and it tends to side with the apparent underdog and against Israel.

It has almost become a reflex on the Continent. In 2003, 59 percent of all Europeans pointed to Israel as the country presenting the greatest risk to world peace. On the third day of the current crisis, fully three quarters of all Germans polled were convinced that Israel was overreacting and using too much force in its response to Hezbollah. And since then, the images coming from the war zone have set the tenor: A cease-fire, most believe, should begin as soon as possible.

I disagree -- and have four reasons for doing so.

First, Israel is fighting a just war. Germany and the European Union should unequivocally back Israel.

Islamism has attacked Israel from both the south and the north and Israel has no choice but to react. But there is more to it than that. Israel's military operation is important for the entire Western world. Until 2005, Islamism was able to successfully mislead the West into thinking that the "occupation" of Gaza and southern Lebanon was the cause of the terror attacks carried out against Israel. Now we know better: Islamism isn't out to change Israeli policy in the region, Islamism is out to completely eradicate the country of Israel. The same strategy is being used on a larger scale: The Middle East conflict is not the cause of Tehran's conflict with Western secularism. It is merely a convenient alibi.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad himself has pointed to Islam's larger conflict with the Western world. When, in October of 2005, he called for the elimination of Israel, he added: "We are in the middle of a historical war that has been going on for hundreds of years." This war, Ahmadinejad's war, has nothing to do with the most recent flare up of the Middle East conflict. "The current war taking place in Palestine," Ahmadinejad has said, is nothing more than "the frontline between the Islamic world and the world of arrogance. We have to recognize the baseness of our enemy so that our holy hatred expands continuously and strikes like a wave."

This "holy hatred" comes with no conditions attached. It doesn't depend on whether one is Jewish or not -- the single measuring stick is whether one blindly obeys the Sharia and dedicates one's life to the Koran. And this "hate" wouldn't disappear were Israel to cease to exist -- the Islamist creed calls for the "World of Arrogance" to also submit to the Sharia, meaning this genocidal wave of hate should ultimately spread across the globe. In order to expedite this goal, the Iranian leadership indicated that thousands of suicide bombers would be sent out to targets across the world. The men and women of the Israeli military are currently fighting on the front lines against this apocalyptic program -- should we not at least consider offering our solidarity?

Second, Israel wants peace.

So far, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government has succeeded in coupling its military operation with transparent political goals. Every step can be justified. On the one hand, Israel recognizes Lebanon as a sovereign state, thus making it responsible for the Hezbollah attack on June 12 in which the group abducted two Israeli soldiers.

On the other hand, Israel's war aims have been clearly stated. In a speech to the country's parliament, the Knesset, on July 17, Olmert said Israel is practicing "basic self defense." "We have the right to our freedom," he said. "When we have to, we know how to fight for and defend that freedom." The fighting serves to achieve the following aims: a. The implementation of United Nations resolution 1559, which calls for the disarmament of Hezbollah; b. The implementation of UN resolution 5241, which calls for south Lebanon to be solely under the control of the Lebanese army, and c. The unconditional return of the kidnapped Israeli soldiers.

These are the goals being pursued by the Israeli military operation. The infrastructure in Lebanon is being attacked, but only insofar as it is relevant to the arming and operations of Hezbollah. The Lebanese civilian population has been warned with leaflets and radio messages prior to attacks in residential areas.

Hezbollah, on the other hand, is marching to a different drummer. Their motto is: "You love life, we love death." There is nothing, gushes Hezbollah's patron Ahmadinejad, "more beautiful, holier or more eternal than the death of a martyr." Thus, Hezbollah is not only happy to kill as many Jews as possible, it is not bothered by the deaths of Shiite Muslims as well and has thus strategically based many of their rockets directly in the middle of Shiite residential districts.

Whereas last weekend, demonstrators in Iran burned Danish flags in protest over the publishing of Muhammad caricatures in a Danish newspaper, this weekend they burned Israeli and American flags to mark the 27th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in the country.

A picture taken from the monitor of the control room shows Iranian technicians unsealing a container of radioactive uranium to be used at the Isfahan Uranium Conversion Facilities. Iran says it is not interested in nuclear weapons.

While Hezbollah, with their inaccurate missiles, tries to kill as many Israeli civilians as possible, Israel -- even if not always successful -- tries to limit the number of Lebanese civilian casualties.

Third, there is no alternative to Israel's current military operation.

Rushing a wounded Israeli soldier to hospital

Will Hezbollah ever willingly give up their weapons? Not a chance!

The Jihad against Israel is the foundation of the militant group's very existence. For Hezbollah members, the destruction of Israel is not only non-negotiable, it is a religious duty. Hezbollah only understands the language of violence and Israel's military is the only force that is in a position to effectively confront Hezbollah. A United Nations force would never be able to achieve what Israel could. In 1983, two suicide attacks carried out by Hezbollah were enough to force the US and France from the region. A UN force, which wouldn't be nearly as strong, would have no chance. Only if Israel were able to weaken the terrorist group in the long term would the stationing of a UN force even become an option.

Never before have the conditions been better for Israel to complete the mission of weakening Hezbollah. The longer the Israeli military can focus on the job at hand, the better the chances are that Lebanon can be freed from the influence of Hezbollah and that the conditions for a lasting peace in the region can be created.

With this in mind, the demand for an immediate cease-fire is the equivalent of a plea for saving Hezbollah. The group's leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah would be able to come out of his hiding place and tell his fighters that, while they may have suffered some casualties, they successfully defended Hezbollah's existence and dignity. He would also be able to rely on Iran to finance the rebuilding of the destroyed Shiite areas and make the claim that Hezbollah was the most important representative of Arab interests. In the case of an immediate cease-fire, a continuation and intensification of the war would be guaranteed.

Fourth, Israel's military operation has already resulted in positive effects.

One can already see some positive results from the Israeli operation -- the strength of which clearly took Hezbollah and its supporters by surprise. Whereas the process of "critical dialogue" -- supported especially by Germany -- with the Mullah dictatorship in Iran and with anti-Semitic terror groups tended to strengthen those groups, the Israeli offensive seems to have started a paradigm shift in the Middle East: For the first time in the history of the Middle East conflict, an overwhelming majority of the Arab League distanced itself from Hezbollah's "dangerous adventurism." Never before have Hezbollah and Iran -- and indirectly Hamas -- been disavowed so directly.

Parts of Beirut continue to be hit hard, particularlythe largely Shiite soutern Beirut neighborhood where Israel suspects many Hezbollah members are hiding.

The reaction from the "Arab Street" has likewise thus far indicated that Israel has chosen the right time and the correct method. Whereas some 2 million people between Rabat and Bahrain took to the streets in the spring of 2002 to demonstrate solidarity with Hamas during the peak of the Second Intifada, things have been relatively quiet this time around -- and this despite the largest Israeli military operation in 24 years. "Rarely have I seen such an uprising, indeed an Intifada, against those little turbaned, bearded men across the Muslim landscape as the one that took place last week," wrote Youssef Ibrahim in the New York Post. "The leader of Hezbollah, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, received a resounding 'no' to pulling 350 million Arabs into a war with Israel on his clerical coattails."

Holding a poster of Nasrallah in Beirut.

Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora has likewise seen fit to distance himself from Hezbollah and the terrorism the group represents -- clearly the result of the weakening of an organization that has until now been able to keep the Lebanese government in line.

A Lebanese family finds shelter in the Shar'ya Koran school in Damascus.

Last but not least, Hezbollah's patron Iran has only produced a feeble response. Whereas Ahmadinejad on July 12 pronounced the eve of Israel's destruction, the country's counterattack left him speechless for a full 48 hours. When he found his tongue again, he said merely that an Israeli attack against Syria would result in a fierce Iranian response. He said nothing about the ongoing attack against his close allies in Lebanon. Promptly, the bellicose language coming out of Tehran and Damascus was exposed as empty rhetoric: Neither of these two countries has sought to actively defend Hezbollah. Israel's offensive has thus managed to deflate Ahmadinejad's regional image.

Of course the political successes that can be seen today do not eliminate the possibility of nasty surprises tomorrow. Islamists are desperately denouncing the Arabian League's "treachery" and trying to mobilize radicals in Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Whether they will be successful remains an open question. The Iranian leadership has likewise sought to strengthen the resolve of Hezbollah: "Well done Nasrallah," said Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel, speaker of the Iranian parliament, on July 18. "Today we are seeing the liberation of Palestine. The war has just begun." It's difficult to predict Iran's reaction: Will they accept the defeat of their Islamist allies or will they escalate the conflict by sending suicide bombers to Lebanon and Europe?

A refugee camp on Nitzanim Beach in southern Israel.

Either way, Israel could do no better than it has to this point -- part of the reason that the US House of Representatives recently declared its unconditional solidarity with Israel by a vote of 410 to eight.

It is terrible to look on while southern Beirut is turned into piles of rubble and to know that civilians on both sides -- as well as Israeli soldiers -- are being injured and killed. Even worse, though, is the realization that Iran could very well emerge as the victor in this war and use the current conflict to justify future attacks.

The pacifist reaction that the Israeli defensive war has triggered in Germany and Europe is not well thought out and is disingenuous. It is also counter-productive. An immediate cease-fire would merely result in a worse conflict in the future. The consequences drawn from Adolf Hitler's World War II -- "Never again fascism! Never again war!" -- were intended to prevent an anti-Semitic war from ever again taking place. Today, that lesson has been forgotten. "Never again war against fascism" is all that remains. Israel must not be forced to abandon its war against Hezbollah, rather it must win the conflict. Just as Hezbollah is fighting the war as Iran's proxy, Israel is fighting genocidal Islamism as the proxy for the rest of the Western world. The least Israel should be able to expect from the West is that it not be betrayed. Matthias Kntzel is a political scientist and a publicist in Hamburg. He is the author of "Djihad und Judenhass. ber den neuen antijdischen Krieg" ("Jihad and Hatred against Jews: On the New War against Jews" published by Verlag Ca Ira. Contact him at MatKuentzel@aol.com

This article is from Spiegel Online (service.spiegel.de/cache/international/0,1518,428245,00.html) July 24, 2006. The accompanying pictures are all from Der Spiegel Online.

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Posted by Bryna Berch, July 24, 2006.

This was written by Ephraim Sneh, and it appeared yesterday in Ynet

Efraim Sneh is theformer is the leader of the Labor Party Knesset faction and was the commander of IDF forces in south Lebanon during Operation Peace for Galilee in 1982.

There's more to know about him. It is no secret that Charlie Rose of Public TV promotes the formation of a Palestinian State and has done so for years and years. And over the years, Efraim Sneh has been a welcome guest because he says all the things Rose wants to hear. Sneh urgently promoted the crazy idea of giving the Golan to Syria. Sneh ignored that Arafat was socking away billions and that the Palestinian Arabs were murdering Jews; instead he devoted his TV time to promoting Arafat and talking about how wonderful it would be to have another Arab state carved out of Biblical Israel. Never once did he mention that Israel legally owned the land. Never once did he show concern for the Jews. No, the only thing he did was talk about was how great it would be to have a Palestinian state. He didn't oppose disengagement and he wasn't worried about Hamas taking over Gaza.

Notice, he links the Hizbullah to Iran but says nothing about Syria. Nevertheless, when Sneh says Israel needs to finish off a bunch of Arab terrorists, I begin to wonder if the Moshiach is on the way.

If the IDF doesn't finish the job now, residents of the north will have suffered in vain

Hizbullah was created by Iran as part of the ayatollahs' overall strategy. The organization has two principle purposes: One, to take control of Lebanon in order to turn it into an Islamic republic supported by Iran. And two: To right Israel and to present a strategic threat to this country and to Israeli society. Iran wants to "blanket" Israel with missiles and rockets, from Gaza in the south the West Bank in the center of the country, and from Lebanon in the south.

When Iranian President Ahmadinejad speaks about destroying Israel, he means exactly that. And before he obtains nuclear weapons, he is trying to hammer and weaken Israeli society with various types of rockets and missiles. Therefore, the war against Hizbullah is part of the wider war between Israel and the evil, hate-filled regime in Tehran that openly aspires to destroy Israel.

Complete the mission

It is clear why Israel cannot cease its fire in Lebanon before its mission is complete. The mission is to destroy Hizbullah's infrastructure in Lebanon and to push the organization away from the Galilee once-and-for-all. If we complete this mission, it will be our first victory over Iran and will constitute an unmistakable message that we have no intention to shy away from Iran's nuclear and terrorist threat.

It will also be a lesson to other Western democracies, who are afraid to take on Tehran, about what needs to be done vis-a-vis Iran.

For six years Iran has stockpiled rockets and missiles in south Lebanon and managed to create a balance of fear with Israel. The threat of hundreds of rockets on Israeli settlements has forced Israel to restrain itself in the face of repeated provocations along the Lebanese border. I believe the high price a ground war with Hizbullah would surely exact from IDF soldiers deterred previous Israeli governments from taking such action.

Strong home front

The decision not to hold back after the kidnapping of two soldiers and the killing of their comrades was the correct decision. There is no way to root out Hizbullah by stopping the operation with some political agreement that could restore the status quo in south Lebanon. Were that to happen, the suffering of residents in northern Israel would have been in vain.

In recent days I have visited embittered residents of the north, and the message I have been hearing has been unilateral: We are prepared to withstand these difficult times, provided the government carries out the destruction of Hizbullah to the very end.

Told you so

And on a personal note: In 2000 I warned against a unilateral withdrawal from Lebanon, because of the vacuum that would be created by an IDF pullout. I said that Hizbullah would take over the area in all its force, and would deploy opposite our settlements in the north.

This is exactly what happened. Now, the IDF is correcting the mistake. I warned that the message we would be sending to the Arab world would be that it is more worthwhile to draw Israeli blood than to negotiate with us. This also came to pass.

Four months after the pullout from Lebanon the second intifada broke out. We lost more than 1,000. I hope we have learned the bitter lesson.

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Posted by Daily Alert, July 24, 2006.

This article was written by Orde Kittrie, a professor of international law at Arizona State University. He served in the U.S. State Department for 11 years, including as senior attorney for nuclear affairs, and negotiated five nuclear non-proliferation agreements between the U.S. and Russia. It appeared yesterday in The Arizona Republic
(www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/ viewpoints/articles/0723vipkittrie0723.html).

The big winner thus far in the clash between Hezbollah and Israel is Iran. Through attacks by its proxy, Hezbollah, Iran is deftly succeeding in distracting the world from the rapidly progressing Iranian nuclear weapons program.

Iran's success brings it one step closer to one of its ultimate goals. That goal is America's destruction. As Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has starkly put it: "God willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world without the United States. ... This goal is attainable, and surely can be achieved."

Why does Iran want to destroy the United States?

Because the United States is the foremost purveyor of Western culture. Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, wants to root out Western culture because it is contrary to Islam and in his view directs "everyone toward materialism while money, gluttony and carnal desires are made the greatest aspiration." As Khamenei put it in an interview in May 2004: "The source of all human torment and suffering is the 'liberal democracy' promoted by the West."

Iranian President Ahmadinejad claims he was divinely given the presidency for a single task: provoking a "clash of civilizations" wherein the Muslim world, led by Iran, defeats the "infidel" West, led by the United States, and thereby hastens the return of the "Hidden Imam," a messiah-like figure. According to Hassan Abbassi, chief strategist for the Iranian Revolutionary Guards: "We have a strategy drawn up for the destruction of Anglo-Saxon civilization ... There are 29 sensitive sites in the U.S. and in the West ... We know how we are going to attack them ... Anything that can be done to terrorize and create fright in the infidel camp is our privilege and honor... We have to uproot liberal democracy from the face of the world."

What is Iran's connection to Hezbollah?

Iran founded Hezbollah, arms it, trains it, and provides it with $20 million to $40 million per month. At Iran's direction, Hezbollah had, prior to Sept. 11, 2001, killed more Americans around the world than any other terrorist organization.

How is Iran using Hezbollah's recent attacks on Israel to advance Iran's nuclear weapons program?

This is a textbook example of how a terrorism-supporting state, Iran, like a master magician can use its left hand, Hezbollah, to distract the world from the more significant action it is undertaking with its right hand, the development of a nuclear arsenal capable of threatening the United States.

This has been a crucial month for Iran's work to acquire both components of such an arsenal: nuclear warheads and the missiles capable of carrying those warheads to the United States. On July 4, Iranian officials participated in North Korea's test launch of a missile which, when perfected, would be capable of hitting Alaska, Hawaii, California, and as far inland as Arizona. The United States, Europe, Japan and others began to discuss how to punish North Korea for this test and dissuade it from future such tests.

On July 11, Ali Larijani, Iran's national security adviser, met with Javier Solana, the European Union diplomat who represents Europe and the United States in negotiations to convince Iran to give up its nuclear weapons program. Solana had in early June presented a very generous offer to Iran of various incentives in exchange for Iran ceasing its nuclear weapons program. Solana wanted a response to the generous offer.

Larijani's response at the July 11 meeting made it clear that Iran is simply dragging out the negotiations to buy time to advance its nuclear weapons program. "The Iranians have given no indication at all that they are ready to engage seriously on the substance of our proposals," announced the French foreign minister on behalf of the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China, Germany and the European Union. "In this context," he declared, "we have no choice but to return to the United Nations Security Council" for a resolution ordering Iran to suspend its nuclear weapons program.

The world seemed to be turning against Iran, and Iran was in a bind. Larijani flew directly from his meeting with Solana to meetings in Damascus with Syrian President Bashar Assad and senior Hezbollah and Hamas leaders. The next day, Hezbollah fired dozens of Iranian and Syrian made missiles at Israel and dispatched its guerillas across the international border to kidnap Israelis. In the days since, Hezbollah has launched 1,000 more rockets at Israeli cities.

Iran's gambit succeeded. At the G-8 summit, the focus was on the televised fighting between Hezbollah and Israel rather than on Iran's quiet nuclear weapons program. Russia announced it would not agree to impose sanctions on Iran. The plan for a Security Council resolution ordering Iran to suspend that program is on hold. And the world has lost interest in seriously pressuring North Korea over the missile tests it conducted in partnership with Iran.

In this era of CNN and the Internet, it is easy to be distracted by news stories with vivid images. Yet every day, far from the news cameras, Iran is pushing forward with its nuclear weapons program, and continuing to work with North Korea to develop missiles capable of delivering those nuclear weapons to the United States.

If the West does not refocus and do whatever it takes to stop Iran's nuclear weapons program, Israel's current difficulties fending off Iranian-made conventional rockets could turn out to be a mere pale preview of U.S. difficulties fending off Iranian-made nuclear-armed missiles. And we will risk someday finding ourselves staring at bombed-out U.S. cities and wishing we had kept our eye on Iran's right hand and taken a stand while we still could.

The Daily Alert is published by the Jewish Center for Public Affairs for the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Contact them to subscribe at daily-alert@dailyalert.org

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Posted by Aaron Ginsburg, July 24, 2006.
Dear All,

Please be sure to look at the sight I have created at
for posting letters written recently from Israel.

Instructions for posting are on the site, or send an e-mail
    to lettersfromisrael@gmail.com

Contact Aaron Ginsburg at aaron.ginsburg@gmail.com

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Posted by Arlene Peck, July 23, 2006.

I'm confused. How long have we been lingering in Iraq? Three years? Four? And how many people are dying, not to mention the trillions of US tax dollars going towards funding this war? Hey, I am not complaining. The extreme Islamists in Iraq are bad guys, who are a threat to their region and the world, and I support our troops, who are doing their best to prevent Islamist expansion beyond that region, and to protect us at home. Yet, there is no outcry to remove forces immediately or rush to United Nation's resolutions.

However, just when you would think the Los Angeles Times and their biased ilk could not get any worse, sure enough they prove us wrong. Our news media reminds us daily of the hundreds of Iraqis and United States soldiers who are being killed. That's an awful "given" of war, that western media has been rehashing on our domestic front for more than 1,000 days. So, that being said, can someone tell me why, when Israel, after finally reaching her breaking point and no longer able to tolerate the continued Hamas and Hezbollah missile attacks, using Iranian katyusha and other long-range rockets, moves to protect herself, as any sovereign country has a right and duty to do, world opinion is already rushing in to protect the terrorists? Apparently this is too difficult to understand.

In between photo-ops with the Hezbollah leader, Kofi Annan gives a press conference offering his solution, which seems to consist entirely of calling for Israel to stop... stop... stop! How are we to believe a man, whose photograph is proliferating across the internet, showing him thanking Nasrallah, who is the head of Hezbollah, for maintaining law and order in the south of Lebanon in the year 2000? Surely if Annan can acknowledge Hezbollah was responsible for that, how can he now accept that it is Israel which is undermining the country's sovereignty?

World-wide those leaders and "experts" who are supposedly in accord with Israel's right to defend herself, pepper their comments with absurdities, such as how many hours Israel has been in "conflict." We know it's OK to spend years, if necessary, in enemy territory defending the USA, yet Israel's defensive efforts are judged in hours and days.

I do notice, however, that Israel has stated unequivocally that they would leave Lebanon, if this same Kofi Anan and his United Nations would push Syria to also leave Lebanon. Israel's position is that the Lebanese army also has to take up its position at the border with Israel and that Hezbollah has to be disarmed -- both included in UN resolution 1559, and ensure that terrorists would not be able to shoot any rockets into Israel's civilian population. This was their agreement when Israel was forced to withdraw from Lebanon.

As usual, lots of talk, with photo-ops, but is anybody convinced by the efforts of the Lebanese government or the results so far? How do you arrange a cease-fire with a group of terrorists? Hezbollah's demand for the release of imprisoned terrorists in exchange for Israeli captives is not an option and it sure is not an option any other country (except maybe France) would tolerate.

Why do they expect Israel to negotiate? Could we have set up negotiations with Hitler? Chamberlain tried that and we saw how brilliantly that turned out. Israel is in the position now of being able to drive a globally mutual enemy out of the area. I watch with disgust as the completely anti-Semitic United Nations, when it considers the Middle East, concentrates only on trying to rein in Israel. Not a surprise though. That is what always happens: instead of finding real solutions, the only answer the world can find is reining in Israel. That is what always happens when Israel has been attacked and is close to destroying the enemy. In addition, I do not remember when the phrase "disproportionate" became an acceptable gauge of a country's right to defend themselves from attacks against its citizens.

Israel's position is well established and known: that it would withdraw if Hezbollah stops firing rockets into Israel, and returns the kidnapped soldiers. Simple? It might be helpful if Kofi and gang would specifically mention in their condemnations that Syria and Iran must cease supplying arms for the terrorists to attack Israel.

Israel must be allowed to win a war that has been thrust upon them. Israel is the best friend of the United States and western democracies. Our interests are tied together. If Israel is forced to turn over the West Bank to Hamas terrorists it would only threaten the area more. In fact, I'll go one step further. Now, in my opinion, would be a perfect time to annex the territories. This is not a situation that can be cured by short-term State Dept. responses, nor is it, despite the Los Angeles Times' insistence, a short term conflict.

The same pro-Palestinian Los Angeles Times always looks for a Jew-baiting story. It is well past time that they acknowledged this ludicrous and obscene situation, where the sovereign Jewish State has to defend its right to even exist. It might be prudent to remind our government that we share the same enemies; that Israel is fighting America's battle at the moment. Israel is also fighting, by proxy, America's war with Iran.

It concerns me when I read LA Times headlines such as "Israeli Arabs are caught in a web of Conflicting Emotions." The Times went on to say, "They are threatened, along with Jews, as Hezbollah rockets land in their midst, but many sympathize with their brethren in Lebanon." Well gol-ly, since they dance on the rooftops after each rocket hits an Israeli city... maybe it's time to not only annex the area but cut out the cancer within ... and transfer them! The same way Beirut was able to clear out its population in just a few days....it could happen in Gaza. No! It should happen in Gaza. Since the Israeli Arabs have such terrible conflicts living among the dreaded Jewish infidels, now would be a perfect time for the enemy within to leave. For the Palestinian Arabs who are located in the middle of Israel, in my opinion, the only solution is transfer! After each attack on Israel citizens, the IDF should drop leaflets and announce that 10% of a specific PA area will be taken back and all Arab residents will have one week to move to any Arab country. Then do it!

Arlene Peck is an internationally syndicated columnist and television talk show hostess. She can be reached at: bestredhead@earthlink.net and www.arlenepeck.com

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Posted by Avodah 15, July 23, 2006.

This article was writtenby Victor Davis Hanson.

Sum up the declarations of Hezbollah's leaders, Syrian diplomats, Iranian nuts, West Bank terrorists, and Arab commentators - and this latest Middle East war seems one of the strangest in a long history of strange conflicts. For example, have we ever witnessed a conflict in which one of the belligerents - Iran - that shipped thousands of rockets into Lebanon, and promises that it will soon destroy Israel, vehemently denies that its own missile technicians are on the ground in the Bekka Valley. Wouldn't it wish to brag of such solidarity?

Or why, after boasting of the new targets that his lethal missiles will hit in Israel, does Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah

("We are ready for it - war, war on every level") now harp that Israel is hitting too deep into Lebanon? Don't enemies expect one another to hit deep? Isn't that what "war on every level" is all about?

Meanwhile, why do the G-8 or the United Nations even talk of putting more peacekeeping troops into southern Lebanon, when in the past such rent-a-cops and uniformed bystanders have never stopped hostilities? Does anyone remember that it was Hezbollah who blew up French and American troops who last tried to provide "stability" between the warring parties?

Why do not Iran and Syria -- or for that matter other Arab states -- now attack Israel to join the terrorists that they have armed? Surely the two-front attack by Hamas and Hezbollah could be helped by at least one conventional Islamic military. After promising us all year that he was going to "wipe out" Israel, is not this the moment for Mr. Ahmadinejad to strike?

And why - when Hezbollah rockets are hidden in apartment basements, then brought out of private homes to target civilians in Israel - would terrorists who exist to murder noncombatants complain that some "civilians" have been hit? Would not they prefer to lionize "martyrs" who helped to store their arms?

We can answer these absurdities by summing up the war very briefly. Iran and Syria feel the noose tightening around their necks -- especially the ring of democracies in nearby Afghanistan, Iraq, Turkey, and perhaps Lebanon. Even the toothless U.N. finally is forced to focus on Iranian nukes and Syrian murder plots. And neither Syria can overturn the Lebanese government nor can Iran the Iraqi democracy. Instead, both are afraid that their rhetoric may soon earn some hard bombing, since their "air defenses" are hardly defenses at all.

So they tell Hamas and Hezbollah to tap their missile caches, kidnap a few soldiers, and generally try to turn the world's attention to the collateral damage inflicted on "refugees" by a stirred-up Zionist enemy.

For their part, the terrorist killers hope to kidnap, ransom, and send off missiles, and then, when caught and hit, play the usual victim card of racism, colonialism, Zionism, and about every other - ism that they think will win a bailout from some guilt-ridden, terrorist-frightened, Jew-hating, or otherwise oil-hungry Western nation.

The only difference from the usual scripted Middle East war is that this time, privately at least, most of the West, and perhaps some in the Arab world as well, want Israel to wipe out Hezbollah, and perhaps hit Syria or Iran. The terrorists and their sponsors know this, and rage accordingly when their military impotence is revealed to a global audience - especially after no reprieve is forthcoming to save their "pride" and "honor."

After all, for every one Israeli Hezbollah kills, they lose ten. You are not winning when "victory" is assessed in terms of a single hit on an Israeli warship. Their ace-in-the-hole strategy - emblematic of the entire pathetic Islamist way of war - is that they can disrupt the good Western life of their enemies that they are both attracted to and thus also hate. But, as Israel has shown, a Western public can be quite willing to endure shelling if it knows that such strikes will lead to a devastating counter-response.

What should the United States do? If it really cares about human life and future peace, then we should talk ad nauseam about "restraint" and "proportionality" while privately assuring Israel the leeway to smash both Hamas and Hezbollah - and humiliate Syria and Iran, who may well come off very poorly from their longed-for but bizarre war.

Only then will Israel restore some semblance of deterrence and strengthen nascent democratic movements in both Lebanon and even the West Bank. This is the truth that everyone from London to Cairo knows, but dares not speak. So for now, let us pray that the brave pilots and ground commanders of the IDF can teach these primordial tribesmen a lesson that they will not soon forget - and thus do civilization's dirty work on the other side of the proverbial Rhine.

In this regard, it is time to stop the silly slurs that American policy in the Middle East is either in shambles or culpable for the present war. In fact, if we keep our cool, the Bush doctrine is working. Both Afghans and Iraqis each day fight and kill Islamist terrorists; neither was doing so before 9/11. Syria and Iran have never been more isolated; neither was isolated when Bill Clinton praised the "democracy" in Tehran or when an American secretary of State sat on the tarmac in Damascus for hours to pay homage to Syria's gangsters. Israel is at last being given an opportunity to unload on jihadists; that was impossible during the Arafat fraud that grew out of the Oslo debacle. Europe is waking up to the dangers of radical Islamism; in the past, it bragged of its aid and arms sales to terrorist governments from the West Bank to Baghdad.

Some final observations on Hezbollah and Hamas. There is no longer a Soviet deterrent to bail out a failed Arab offensive. There is no longer empathy for poor Islamist "freedom fighters." The truth is that it is an open question as to which regime - Iran or Syria - is the greater international pariah. After a recent trip to the Middle East, I noticed that the unfortunate prejudicial stares given to a passenger with an Iranian passport were surpassed only by those accorded another on his way to Damascus.

So after 9/11, the London bombings, the Madrid murders, the French riots, the Beslan atrocities, the killings in India, the Danish cartoon debacle, Theo Van Gogh, and the daily arrests of Islamic terrorists trying to blow up, behead, or shoot innocent people around the globe, the world is sick of the jihadist ilk. And for all the efforts of the BBC, Reuters, Western academics, and the horde of appeasers and apologists that usually bail these terrorist killers out when their rhetoric finally outruns their muscle, this time they can't.

Instead, a disgusted world secretly wants these terrorists to get what they deserve. And who knows: This time they just might.

Contact Avodah 15 by email at avodah15@aol.com

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Posted by Barry Shaw, July 23, 2006.

Israel now finds itself fighting Hizbollah, Hamas, and other deadly Islamic terror groups, at the same time.

We are fighting them in the north, in the south, and in the east of our country - and we are fighting them alone!

As someone said to me this week, "Thank God we have the sea to our west. Otherwise we would be totally surrounded!"

Our soldiers, sailors, and airmen, are trying so hard to protect us. Our citizens in the north and south are trying so hard to remain firm under horrendous rocket and terror attacks.

Sometimes it is so hard to fight alone.

We know we are an "Am Hazak!" a strong country. But, sometimes, we feel so alone.

Show us your love and your support!

Shout it! Scream it! Demonstrate it! Until we can hear you, and believe that you are with us?"

Barry Shaw made aliyah from Manchester, England, 25 years ago with his family. He now runs a real estate office in Netanya. He writes the "View from Here" columns from Israel. To sign up to receive his emails, contact him at netre@matav.net.il

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Posted by Women in Green, July 23, 2006.

This was written by Rabbi Eliezer Waldman, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivat Nir Kiryat Arba. July 19, 2006

I must begin by expressing that our hearts are with our soldiers on both the northern and southern fronts, and our prayers beseech the Almighty to protect them so that they all return home safely.

Also, we implore the God of Israel to grant wisdom to our leaders so they have the courage to make the decisions that will achieve the goal of destroying our enemies. In times of war, the Jewish people's secret weapon is the power of unity. Thank God this power is the active driving force in Israel today.

As we reflect on what has happened to us these past few weeks, we must not stop ourselves from recognizing and analyzing the weaknesses and mistakes that brought us to such alarming circumstances. Going back to the Yom Kippur War, I cannot remember a situation where our enemies succeeded in humiliating us by invading our sovereign territory, killing and kidnapping soldiers -- and this despite the fact that intelligence sources specifically warned of such intentions.

The best way to express my feelings as an introduction to the harsh words and thoughts burning within me is by quoting Rav Kook, who wrote: I am lifting my voice loudly not because I have the strength to speak, but because I don't have the strength to keep silent.

I believe that for years the leadership has been weakening the army. The IDF is highly technological and ultra-modern in its weaponry but its leaders depress the morale of the troops and suppress their motivation. It began with Oslo -- creating the illusion of peace and turning our worst enemies, whose goal is to destroy us, into so-called partners for peace. And all this was done while blinding our people, especially our soldiers, to the reality of the evil intentions of these "peace partners."

When an army created to protect the land and people of Israel is inculcated with distorted codes of morality which suddenly dictate that foes are friends, the result is confusion -- the illusion of peaceful borders and an inability to recognize the enemy. The tragic events on the Gaza border and the endless barrage of deadly rockets on the North are direct results of that confusion and illusions of peace.

There can be no greater distortion of Jewish values and confusion planted into the hearts of our soldiers than when disengagement -- meaning the uprooting of Jewish communities and synagogues -- becomes Zionist policy. This situation has created a mentality that weakens motivation and alertness, which are so essential in preventing disastrous mistakes like those which preceded the Hamas and Hizbullah infiltration, kidnapping and murder of soldiers.

All the recent humiliating military failures stem from the uncertain policymaking of Israeli leaders in recent years. Specifically, there are three policy concepts -- illusions, really -- that express a basic misunderstanding of the responsibilities of a government surrounded by enemies bent on its destruction.

First illusion: By disengaging from our enemy and from our land which our enemy claims, we will lessen the friction and achieve peace. No one heeded our warnings that by fleeing from our enemies, yielding parts of our homeland and uprooting Jewish life, our enemies would be stimulated to attack us even more. Historically, Zionism always held that the best way to strengthen the Jewish position was by building up our settlements and communities in Eretz Yisrael.

Second illusion: By building a fence we will ensure security and the enemy will be unable to attack us. The truth is, rockets can be fired over the fence and tunnels can be dug under it. The intention of our enemies has never changed. They mean to destroy us.

Third illusion: They will remain there and we will remain here and never the twain shall meet. We have heard our leaders expressing this "logical" philosophy to justify disengagement and building fences. How silly not to understand that the enemy on the other side will continue to seek the annihilation of the State of Israel by sending rockets from there to here, as indeed we are experiencing right now.

I do hope that any Israeli leader who has the courage to face reality will be able to recognize the tragic blunder of disengagement -- a blunder that has brought the enemy's rockets to Sderot and Ashkelon.

Can our leaders still dream of and plan another irresponsible crime called "convergence" which will, God forbid, bring the Arab rockets from disengaged areas of Judea and Samaria to our coastal plain -- to Tel Aviv, Petach Tikva, Netanya and Ben Gurion Airport -- in addition to uprooting 80,000 Jewish men, women and children, synagogues, schools and yeshivot? The very thought of another disengagement is beyond human logic and Jewish morals.

I pray and hope that our leaders have learned their lesson, a very painful one suffered by families bereaved by the loss of their loved ones as we've proceeded along this irrational path. How tragic that it took the blind hatred of the Iranian president, implemented by his prodigy Nasrallah in Lebanon, and rockets exploding in the Galilee and Haifa, to awaken the natural national instinct and pride of the Jewish leadership in Israel.

I hope I am not being overly optimistic when I expect our government and armed forces to have the determination and resolve needed to subdue the enemy and obliterate their stockpiles of weapons of destruction. We cannot allow ourselves to be enticed into curtailing this mission by yielding to a ceasefire and negotiations -- as we have naively done in the past -- which will only allow our enemies to rearm and rebuild their forces of destruction.

We are now in the period called the Three Weeks of mourning for the destroyed Temples which in Hebrew is called bain hamayzarim -- between the straits. I have a feeling that we are on the verge of getting out of the narrow straits we have created by deluding ourselves with distorted concepts like disengagement and convergence. If I am correct, we must open our eyes to the divine guidance arousing the Jewish People and its leadership to a revival of Zionist faith, which will bring security and renewed pioneering activity in the Land of Israel.

In place of disengagement, an intense movement of reengagement -- reengagement with the Land of Israel, reengagement with the Jewish People, reengagement with the God of Israel, reengagement with the destiny of Zionism.

Instead of uprooting thousands of Jews from our land, we must deepen the roots of Jewish faith and Zionist fervor in the soil of our holy land of Israel.

Hopefully this will bring us to the ultimate ideal of "Lamentations" which we read on Tisha b'Av: Bring us back to you, O Lord, and we shall return. Renew our days as of old.

Ruth and Nadia Matar established Women For Israel's Tomorrow (Women in Green), an activist group of women based in Jerusalem. Their website address is http://www.womeningreen.org

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Posted by Sandy Rosen-Hazan, July 23, 2006.
See below for my previous blogs-eds on the war. My comments are in [].

Surfer becomes soldier in Israeli draft:
Emergency summons, or "Order 8" makes conflict "a real war"

CNN -- Saturday, July 22, 2006; Posted: 8:12 p.m. EDT (00:12 GMT) Israeli reserves have their M-16s checked as they register for service in the ongoing battles with Hezbollah. (in article's attached photo)

JERUSALEM (AP) -- Roy Bass emerged from the Mediterranean waves at noon Friday for a Popsicle break when, surfboard in hand, he heard his cell phone ringing on the beach. It was a recorded message: "An emergency draft has been activated."

Four hours later, the 27-year-old computer programmer was at an army base, in full uniform, preparing to head to Israel's northern border, where troops were massing to take on Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.

Israel's mighty military is comprised of thousands like Bass -- ordinary civilians who, at a moment's notice, respond to the call to arms.

On Friday, several thousand reservists were drafted for immediate, emergency duty. By Friday night, the army chief of staff announced the response was full, plus thousands who volunteered on their own initiative. "The reserves have proven themselves once again," said Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz, the army chief of staff.

The enthusiastic response highlights the intimate relationship Israel has with its army. Nearly every Jewish Israeli has served in the army, and opinion polls consistently show the army to be the country's most trusted institution.

Since Israel became independent in 1948, reserves have been the backbone of its military, conditioned to drop everything and be mobilized within a day or two to back up the far smaller core of active duty soldiers. Men from all walks of life -- and increasingly women with special skills -- instantly become soldiers again.

Israel's standing army of about 186,500 troops can jump to 631,500 with rapid mobilization, according to figures from the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies.

The system has proved effective in all of Israel's wars. In 1973, when Egypt and Syria attacked en masse on the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur, thousands of reservists were summoned from their homes and synagogues and rushed to the front lines to push back the offensive.

Despite Israel's increasing reliance on technological superiority, military service remains a rite of passage. All 18-year-old men are drafted for three years and will continue with the reserves into their 40s, by which time many will have sons in the army or reserves. Women are drafted for two years.

As Israel's military dominance has grown, it has become less reliant on its reserves. The retirement age has been gradually lowered from 51 to 40 in some cases, and the number of reserves called up has steadily dropped, with the army focusing more on those with specialized skills, such as air force pilots and intelligence officers.

Some view the task the way Americans view jury duty -- boring and disruptive, especially for college students and the self-employed. Most, however, welcome it as a break from the rigors of daily life, a chance to bond with old comrades in a setting where a backgammon board is often a more important accessory than a rifle.

In peacetime, a reserve stint is something to be haggled over with a commanding officer with all sorts of excuses -- a college exam, an overseas vacation, a spell of dental surgery. But when the call-up is an "Order 8," military parlance for an emergency summons, the response is visceral.

"All of a sudden it becomes a real war, it changes everything," Bass said by cell phone from his base in northern Israel. Bass serves annually in his armored battalion, but this is his first Order 8.

Where once Israelis were drafted to war by air raid sirens, passwords over the radio and recruiters going door to door, today they are summoned by computerized calls to their cell phones.

When Bass got his call-up, he sped home and swapped his bathing suit for an army uniform. [As did my wonderful grandson Noam!!!!] "There was no dilemma, no doubt in my mind because it is something you grow up with, that this is the most important thing there is," he said. "It's ingrained deep inside you -- if they call you, you go."

Even without a war, reservists are as much at risk as regular soldiers. The two soldiers who were kidnapped by Hezbollah on the Lebanon border, triggering the current round of fighting, were reservists.

Ephraim Sneh, a lawmaker and former general, said his three parliamentary assistants were drafted for emergency duty. He said those who are called are genuinely needed and, therefore, "whoever serves, serves with joy."

"The destiny of Israel is the hands of the few, and we owe our lives to the few," he said. "Those who are on the front lines were always the few, but thanks to these devoted people we are still here."

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.


Egoz soldiers survive intifada only to die in Lebanon
By Amos Harel -- Haaretz -- July 23, 2006

In this war, bad news travels faster than ever before. So far, the fighting in Lebanon has been waged very close to the camera lenses of Israeli television networks. When broadcasts are interrupted by live reports from "a tough day of battles north of Avivim," viewers on the home front don't require much explanation. The availability of uncensored (and not always verified) news on some Internet sites and the prevalence of text messages from soldiers near the frontline are way ahead of army representatives.

On Thursday afternoon, when soldiers from Golani's Egoz unit engaged in fierce battle with Hezbollah fighters in the village of Maroun Ras, rumors spread almost immediately: Five soldiers killed. Although the IDF doesn't like to admit it, many of its elite units bear a clearcut sociological label. Just as Maglan, which lost two soldiers from kibbutzim in a battle in the same area on Wednesday, has remained a bastion of kibbutz members, Egoz draws religious officers and soldiers.

When the extent of casualties in the incident became clear, there was a wave of worried telephone calls among graduates of the pre-military academies, in and out of uniform. This time, they knew for sure, our friends will be among the dead. The next day, Friday, names of three of the dead were released: Major Benji Hillman from Ra'anana, a graduate of the academy at the settlement of Eli, and Staff Sergeant Raphanael Muskal from Mazkeret Batya, a graduate of the academy at Keshet on the Golan Heights. Staff Sergeant Nadav Balva of Carmiel and Staff Sergeant Liran Saadia of Kiryat Shmona were also killed in that encounter.

Even among a generation of remarkable Golani field commanders, Benji Hillman, 27, stood out. He spent a large part of his service in Egoz, which was established in 1995 to deal with Hezbollah and developed expertise in fighting guerrilla forces in South Lebanon. After the withdrawal from Lebanon, in May 2000, the unit was left nearly unemployed. Its then-commander, Tamir Yidai, incorporated Egoz into the fighting that erupted in the territories several months later. Because of his previous job, running the deputy chief of staff's bureau, Yidai continued to get beeper notices from the operations brigade. He located the more active sectors in the West Bank and sent his men there.

In the summer of 2002, ahead of an Egoz arrest sweep in the Nablus casbah, Haaretz photographer Pavel Wolberg snapped Hillman as he painted his face together with other officers. For Hillman, then the unit's operations officer, it was a final mission before a big trip overseas. Even a momentary visitor could not miss him: energetic, brimming with humor, the object of open affection from commanders and comrades alike.

Hillman, who immigrated from Britain at age 4, is survived by his parents, Daniel and Judy, sister Abigail, brother Shimon, and his wife of three weeks, Ayala. Relatively few brown berets could be seen at his funeral on Friday in Ra'anana, because most Golani soldiers are busy fighting up north.



** Some 17 people were wounded Saturday, two of them seriously, as waves of Katyusha strikes - more than 160 rockets - struck targets across the north of Israel.

** Ten rockets land in Haifa Sunday morning, killing two people and wounding several others. Two children hurt in Katyusha rocket strike on Carmiel Sunday morning; more rockets fired at the Upper Galilee, Acre, Tiberias and Kiryat Shmona during Sunday. ** Some 37 Israelis have been killed (including soldiers) since the beginning of fighting in the north. ** Hospitals in Israel have treated 1,293 people who were injured in rocket attacks since the fighting on the country's northern border began 12 days ago. 19 people are still hospitalized across the country in serious condition. Another 37 people sustained moderate wounds and 325 were lightly injured. The number of people who suffered from shock stands at 875. ** More Israeli civilians are dead in these 12 days than in the 18 years that we were inside Lebanon, when 25 civilians had died.

[For the latest news see the Jerusalem Post, Ha'aretz and YNet.

For video of Channel 2 News in English:


Beware of Disinformation:
by Mitchell Bard -- Aish.com -- July 23, 2006

Following are three excerpts from this article (See the complete article at: http://www.aish.com/jewishissues/mediaobjectivity/ Beware_of_Disinformation.asp) In waging their propaganda war, Israel's enemies count on journalists to report first and research later, if at all, and most of the media outlets have fallen into their trap.

The press is also spending a great deal of time talking to Lebanese civilians and their relatives in the United States and highlighting the difficult conditions they are enduring. This is no doubt the case since they are living in a war zone; however, the media has spent almost no time talking to the Israelis living under the constant threat of rocket attacks. Few reporters have gone into the bomb shelters to interview the frightened Israeli families. No one seems interested in how the relatives of Israelis in the United States feel about their loved ones being under siege.

Wars are never easy to cover, and each side of a conflict wants to make its case through the media. A responsible press, however, does not repeat whatever it hears; it first makes every effort to insure the accuracy of its reporting. That is the standard expected of journalists covering the war between Israel and Hizbullah.


[Some of the things in these four items from Safed appeared in the last Newsletter WAR Update, however, these seem more personal:]

War Blogs: by Civilians in Israel
-- from Aish.com -- July 23, 2006
Four firsthand accounts from civilians under attack in Safed.


TZFAT, ISRAEL -- The screams of the 9-year-old girl as she pushed through the door immediately grabbed everyone's attention. No amount of reassuring from her mother could truly comfort her. Wrapped inside her mother's arms, the trembling child was too overwhelmed to comprehend the war going on around her.

As an adult, I felt oddly safe, despite the siren blaring in the distance. My adult mind was able to rationalize that the odds of being hit by a Katyusha rocket were actually infinitesimal. And I knew that inside the window-less center of the hospital, I really wasn't even at risk of flying shards of glass.

While a child might not think in terms of "odds," she didn't need to go far to witness justification for her fears. Since last Thursday, more than 100 local residents have come through the front door, some with severe physical injuries, others suffering from severe emotional trauma.

Just last night, a Hezbollah-launched Katyusha rocket smashed into the side of the building. Thankfully, it hit concrete, meaning there was no explosion inside the hospital. But since Katyushas spray shrapnel upward in a cone formation, the blast knocked out windows across the hospital.

Walking through the children's wing the day after, it was clear that a miracle had occurred there. Even after a cleaning crew had done its work, glass was everywhere, including little shards wedged in the computer keyboard where kids normally are glued for hours at a time, day after day. But since the rocket hit after 10pm, no children were in the playroom.

Another child, though, was not as lucky. Recovering from spleen surgery one floor above the children's wing, 13-year-old Koby was watching TV at the time of the blast. Glass rained down on him, and he was gashed in the back of his head.

Further from the blast but on the same floor as the children's wing, 52-year-old Yakov Avoudboul was thrown out of his bed and across the room. This, though, was far less devastating than the rocket that exploded just one meter from him on Friday. An assistant chef at the hospital, Avoudboul was called in on the second day of sustained attacks to prepare meals for the increasing number of patients. Within moments of stepping out his front door, the rocket came within a whisker of killing him instantly.

The rocket explosion sprayed shrapnel into his legs, back, and arms.

After he bathes, merely wrapping a towel around himself "feels like dragging nails across my back." The physical wounds, though, will heal. Far more long-lasting will be the emotional scars. "Since Friday, I don't sleep; I just relive the event," he said.

Like other populated civilian areas across northern Israel, Tzfat (Safed) has been showered with Katyusha rockets for almost a week now. Despite this, some residents are actually trying to maintain some semblance of normality. Dr. Anthony Luder explained that he still walks his dog. The punch line to his story, though, was that minutes after he finished one such walk, a spot he had just been was hit by a Katyusha.

Welcome to life in Tzfat. Many residents have experienced near-misses or miraculous timing. Locals have been swapping stories for the past few days, and at least one person said this recent ritual is therapeutic. Based on the rest of the day's events, there will be more tales to tell.

Fifteen minutes after the siren -- the recommended time during which people should stay in sheltered positions -- the group of seven journalists I was with got on the bus and drove away. Less than a mile from the hospital, we saw at least two separate plumes of smoke rising up from the valley below. We received a call from the hospital executive who had shown us around that more rockets had just hit. News reports later indicated that several more rockets pounded the Tzfat area within hours of our departure.

For adults who escape physically intact, the long-term impact of the rocket attacks hopefully will be minimal. Compartmentalization and blocking painful memories are well-practiced skills for adult minds. But as we drove away with smoke from rocket explosions off in the distance, it was the image of the terrified 9-year-old girl I couldn't shake.

2. A DIRECT HIT by Miriam Swerdloff

Dearest Family and Friends,

By now, we've all heard the sad news of what has been happening here in Israel. As an eye witness, I must tell you that the devastation to the north is heartbreaking. What remains are ghost towns with dilapidated buildings beneath an ominous black smoky sky.

I was in Tzfat for the last five days and I know now more than ever before how closely God guides our lives. There were countless miracles for the people in my community, myself included.

Thursday morning, we had no idea what was about to happen. Since it was a fast day, our class decided to go the cemetery to daven for the Jewish People. I stuck around for a while after the girls had left. I wanted some time to reflect on what the fast meant. Then the missiles started.

I ducked behind the nearest grave. It must have felt like hours passed in just those few moments. Someone who happened to be working in the graveyard offered me a ride back to school. He turned out to be a high ranking army official, and he explained to me why they so desperately wanted to hit Tzfat. There is a very important military base there that has an underground storehouse of much of Israel's ammunition. He made a few phone calls and quickly found out where the other missiles had hit, and then devised our escape route.

Given the amount of missiles that fell, statistically so many more people should have been hurt. In the first round of missiles that hit Tzfat, the park of the local college was hit. Strangely enough, it was cold and very windy that day, so the park was empty. Another missile fell right outside of a crowded hotel. Thank God it wasn't six feet closer to the hotel. Eight missiles fell in that round.

I went back to school. Most of us were in shock from what was happening. Although the school wasn't very secure with glass everywhere, we stayed put for the rest of the day. We must have gone through the entire book of Psalms 25 times!!

When the military announced that things had simmered down, I decided it was better for me to spend the night in the school building than alone in my apartment. ("Coincidently," my apartment mates had left the day before.)

I wanted to go home to pick up some overnight necessities. I happened to overhear another woman who wanted to leave the building. She had her child with her and her arms full of bags. My friend and I decided we would accompany her to where she wanted to go, and then we would carry on to my apartment.

The woman arrived safely, and then we left to go to my apartment. About 150 feet into our journey, the missiles started to fall again. We were at the edge of the city, with only Mount Meron in our view.

The first missile hit about 50 feet in front of us! Noise, fire... We dove to the ground with only a two foot wall to shield us. Moments later, I heard a woman screaming frantically for her child. I called out to her. She found her child, and then ushered us inside. We sat with her and her five children while the missiles rained down and the fast day ended. We tried to distract the kids by singing songs and playing games. A couple hours later when her husband got home, we made a mad dash back to school in the dark.

We made it back safely, and then I found out the news. In the round of missiles that fell when I left the school, my apartment received a direct hit. I had been on my way to the apartment. The only reason I wasn't there when the missiles struck was because I had done a mitzvah and accompanied someone who needed help.

The last I heard was that over 300 missiles fell on the small town of Tzfat while I was there. After a while, we got used to the sounds. Imagine, singing Lecha Dodi at shul with missiles falling nearby. Imagine, eating your Shabbos meal with smoke in the air. That was life for us this past week. Please pray for us! Be proud to be Jewish! Be proud that God is stronger than any fear or enemy we might have. Do an extra mitzvah, it may just save your life, or someone else's.

Your sister in Israel,


3. Wedding under Fire by Miri Chason

Everyone knows the sad and scary stories of the past few days in the north. This Thursday, in Kiryat Shmona, a different type of story broke the trend for a few hours. July is usually known as the 'wedding month', but 2006 has seen a number of cancellations due to the security situation. Maya and Shlomi decided that, despite the rockets, this would not be the case with them.

The couple replaced their intended 900-person convention center with the Matmid school bomb shelter in their home town of Kiryat Shmona. "We'll be celebrating the wedding night in a shelter as well," said the brand-new groom.

The escalation on the northern border took its toll on the bride, as she saw how the wedding she'd dreamed of for years was slowly falling apart. Her father, Albert, elaborated: "They were in a very bad mood. In one moment, everything was ruined for them. They'd saved up every penny they earned in order to have this wedding and nothing was going according to plan. They already put down a fifty percent down payment on everything but it's unclear what will happen with the money now. I hope that they'll be able to survive it."

When Maya got out of her car in her wedding dress, she was shocked by the many cameras that greeted her. Instead of guests, she was surrounded by news crews, all asking to document the triumph of the human interest in a time of turmoil. The ice slowly melted and, by the time the cup was broken, the young couple started to smile.

During the entire ceremony, many explosions were heard, but the guests hurried to comfort one another: "That's us firing, not them." The DJ added to the atmosphere and asked guests to "dance and be happy, so that Nasrallah would hear them rejoicing."

"At first I was very stressed out, but now everything is good," said the young bride. "The most important thing is that we're together as man and wife. Nothing else matters to me," added her husband.

Courtesy of ynetnews.com


The first thing I want to say is thank you to all of you who are supporters of Israel. Your prayers for our well being are meaningful and purposeful.

Thursday, July 13, 2006, 17 Tammuz 5766, a Jewish day of fasting that marks the beginning of three weeks of mourning the destruction of the holy Temple of Jerusalem over 2,000 years ago. Since the shelling in Lebanon was so constant, we decided it would be a good thing to clean out our neighborhood bomb shelter. It was used for storage since Tzfat had never been bombed before. It was built to protect the ten homes on our little row of houses going up the side of the mountain.

Within 20 minutes of finishing the shelter clean up, the first rockets started to fall on Tzfat. We did not have the warning of sirens. The bombs just started falling. Can I describe what it's like to hear a missile fall near your home? The earth rocked. I could feel the nearby impact right through to my bones. I felt stunned. Time stood still. As I heard the shrapnel fall onto my roof, the air was also filled with my husband's shouts to get to the shelter. Outside, I could see smoke rising from houses near ours, but the bombs were still coming. My neighbor asked me what was happening -- she was clearly stunned too. I pointed to the billowing smoke, shouted, and we ran into the shelter with the children.

When we first went into the bomb shelter, the fearsome noises, the tumult, the frantic mothers calling family members who weren't home all added to the fear of the children. I had all my family with me, so I sat on the floor and held five young girls on my lap or next to me. I knew them all; they were my neighbors, and my daughter. The five and seven-year-olds were crying, the two-year-old just trying to be close, and the 10-year-olds were solemn at my sides needing my touch and the sound of my voice.

I choked back my own tears, sang a little bit from Psalms, and hugged tight who ever wanted it. People did their best to bring each other comfort. People prayed, people phoned. There are two families with sons in the army. Young men with bright, mischievous eyes, sweet faces; they are the "big brothers" that the younger guys look up to and want to emulate. Since I moved to Israel, people often ask me what it's like here. I answer that if see a group of Israeli teens with guns, I don't feel afraid; I pray for their safety. Now my prayers are intensified.

We stayed in the bomb shelter for a few hours. A 13-year-old boy who had recently celebrated his bar mitzvah, hungry from fasting, shook his head and said, "Davka, specifically on a fast day they had to start this."

"You know what Moshiko?" I answer. "Our enemy knows our calendar well; they know exactly what day this is." I flash back on a story of Nazis bringing a feast to some Jews at work on Yom Kippur, Jews who would not break their holy fast. And neither did we break our fast as we sat waiting. The passage of time was surreal. Finally I ran into the house and quickly threw a few things into a suit case as my family jumped in the car to travel south to safety.

We're in touch with some of our neighbors by cell phone; most of them are staying with relatives. Many residents from the north have moved south, staying with family and friends as rockets continue to rain down in the north.

We're officially refugees now. We are out of our home and don't know when we can return safely. When people in the Jerusalem area where we are staying find out I'm from Tzfat, their eyes soften and I can sense their hearts open. They know the price of war and loss. For the time being, we are staying with friends. There are communities all over Israel where people are opening their homes to those that had to flee to safety. We've had many offers from friends all over the country to stay in their homes and that if we didn't need to, but knew someone who did, to please pass along the offer. There is an amazing network of people who want to take care of each other.

I'm still processing all that I'm experiencing. When I meet someone else from Tzfat, the connection is healing -- a piece of home -- that "knowing" of what it was to feel the shock of being bombed. Cell phones are ringing, emails are flying, people want to know who's where, is everyone okay?

My thoughts go back in time to WWII when there were no cell phones to connect, no internet so you can know where your loved ones are.

Today we have an army to fight back when we are attacked.

And we are fighting back.

And my thoughts fly back in time to the Holy Temple, the Beit Hamikdash. We of this generation have no idea what we lost. How could we? We never knew it. But if my home is a mini Temple, if my table is a mini altar, and now I know the grief of the loss of my home -- a home I can't get back to now, a home I long to return to -- then how much more intense is it that we have lost that central hearth of the Jewish people?

I can't really wrap my brain around war. I cling to the notion that what we can do to change this world are more acts of kindness. It's okay to get out of your comfort zone on this one. All the great rabbinic teachers tell us about the miracles that occur when we guard our speech. Talking negatively about someone (even when it's true!) may be the most damaging habit of our time. May our words always be gentle and kind. Right now is a good time to let go of grudges and forgive. What I've been working on lately in my own path of growth is "Love the unlovable." I read that in a book about being close to your teen and have been applying it to all different kinds of situations. Judge less, embrace more.

Keep praying for peace, keep performing purposeful acts of loving kindness, and give the benefit of the doubt as much as you can. It's the best strategy I know for rocking the heavens and changing this world. May we all choose right action and share many sweet, joyous times.


Man seriously wounded in Akko rocket attack:
By Ahiya Raved -- Ynet News -- July 23, 2006

One man seriously injured after being hit by rocket in Akko; two lightly hurt by barrage fired at Upper Galilee; two more lightly injured in rocket attack near Tiberias. At around 5 p.m. rocket strikes apartment building in Haifa area; six lightly injured. Earlier Sunday, two people killed in Haifa rocket attack. See the VIDEO: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3280144,00.html

Two rocket barrages hit north Sunday afternoon: One man was seriously injured after being hit by a rocket in Akko. In Kiryat Shmona two rockets directly hit houses. Two people were lightly wounded by shrapnel. A short while later three rocket landed in open fields near Tiberias; two people sustained light injuries.

At around 5 p.m. a rocket struck an apartment buildingin the Haifa area and ignited a fire; six people were lightly hurt in the attack.

Morning Attack in Haifa: 2 killed in rocket attacks:

Heavy rocket barrage hits several places in Haifa, Nesher, surrounding areas; two people killed, 12 injured, one sustaining serious wounds. In Nesher, rocket opens hole in wall, lands in center of living room. Child lightly wounded by rocket in Carmiel

Avi Feldheim, who works in Akko, told Ynet: "I heard a siren followed by two blasts. I saw smoke in one of the places in the city. Now the smoke has ascended, apparently a fire hasn't started there."

The siren was heard at around 3 p.m. across Haifa, the surrounding areas, Hatzor, Rosh Pina, Safed and Akko. Police reported that no rockets hit Haifa and the surrounding areas. Residents were called to enter reinforced rooms.

On Sunday morning, two people were killed and 17 were wounded after rockets hit several places in Haifa. From the onset of the fighting in the north, 12 days ago, 37 Israelis have been killed.

The rocket that hit the Ramot Yitzhak neighborhood in the Nesher suburb of Haifa penetrated directly into Zohar Bernstein's living room, and created a huge hole in the middle of her home. The hit caused structural damage to the apartment and caused the windows to break.

"We were in an inner room," Zohar said. "We purposely weren't in the fortified room, because it is actually on the outer side of the apartment. Thankfully, I wasn't injured. My son and I were in the apartment, but we got out without injuries. I didn't understand at first that the rocket had hit my home directly." Bernstein was scared and upset and, in response to the question of whether he would remain in his home, he said: "Apparently not."

The apartment itself was completely wrecked. A security official who arrived at the apartment removed part of the rocket from the living room.

Deadly hit near Haifa:

An employee of a carpentry shop near Haifa was killed after being directly hit by a rocket. The place suffered great damage. The other workers said that they had began running toward the reinforced room when the missiles began falling. Some of them failed to reach the room and were hurt by shrapnel. One worker was seriously injured and other were lightly hurt.

"We won?t let them break us. We will overcome and will be strong. At the end everything will be okay," the carpentry shop's owner told Ynet. The shop owner was at the time of the hit in his office located on the second floor. "We heard the siren, I yelled at everyone to run to the reinforced room. This is a 2,000-meter (6,562-feet) factory, everyone ran, and the worker who reached the entrance first was hit by the missile and was killed, apparently on the spot," he recounted.

The owner, whose four children work with him in the carpentry shop, began searching for them and for his workers. "I began looking for everyone. My daughter was in shock and began crying. I understood I had an injured worker, and apart from that I saw the rest of the workers in shock but not hurt," he said.

The sales manager of an adjacent business heard the noise of the blast and hurried to the location to see if anyone was hurt. "We wanted to return to our daily routines, but then I heard an explosion and I understood that a rocket had fallen five or six meters (16 or 19 feet) from me. Simultaneously, windows in my building began to explode. I ran in order to see if anyone was hurt and then I saw a man running outside with a stream of blood coming out of his ear. I hurried to him, stopped the blood flow and pressed down on his ear. I didn't let go until MDA arrived," he recounted.

"The whole time, I tried to keep him awake: I tried to cheer him up, asked how old he was, if he was married. He said he was married, with children, and I told him that he had to hold on for their sake," he added. Pursuant to the event, Kiryat Ata Mayor Yaakov Peretz said that he intends to reexamine the IDF Home Front Command's suggestion that city residents return to business as usual and, instead, recommend that only workers deemed critical by the local authorities continue to go to work. "There's no reason for additional people to get hurt as they did today in Kiryat Ata and a week ago in the train depot," he said.

Raanan Ben-Zur, Sharon Roffe-Ofir and Neta Sela contributed to the report


Fighting in Lebanon / The offensive is widening:
By Ze'ev Schiff -- Haaretz -- July 23, 2006

Israel has decided to widen the offensive against Hezbollah. Now the IDF chiefs are talking about fighting that would go on for weeks and the need for more time for various ground operations. On the other hand this would provide Hezbollah with time to wage a war of attrition against Israel's civilian population, unless the IDF destroys the rocket deployment in southern Lebanon.

The PMO's office and IDF believe Israel has all the operational time it needs for military action. Officials who know the American administration do not agree. They believe Israel has no more than 10 to 14 days to make significant military achievements. This also applies to the Israeli public's fortitude.

The Pentagon is following the fighting in Lebanon closely. They believe the key is Israel's ability to strike at the rocket deployment that Hezbollah received from Iran. The Pentagon regards the rocket deployment as strategic for Iran. That is why Israel must destroy it. Washington's expectations are also reflected in the swift delivery of bombs and munitions from the United States to Israel.

The IDF, whose ground activity remained close to the border until the end of the week, will widen its offensive. Elite commandos acted in the border area, where Hezbollah took over abandoned IDF outposts. They found Hezbollah outposts had deep tunnels with lighting. The IDF sustained losses in these operations. Apparently more effective means must be used to flush out Hezbollah with minimum losses.

Israel has refrained from operating large ground forces, relying mostly on the air force. But despite the air force's successes, its achievements are limited regarding short-range rockets. Introducing larger ground forces was not meant to do what the IDF did in 1982 when it conquered parts of Beirut. But if ground forces remain in Lebanon soil for long, it could be seen as occupation. Remaining there also requires protection and construction work.

The IDF is expected to raid areas in southern Lebanon to undermine large parts of Hezbollah's rocket deployment. If it succeeds, it will shorten the attrition war against Israelis in the north. The air force will also continue striking the rocket deployment.

Beirut's bombing has let up slightly to let civilians leave. However, the bombing to prevent the supply of weapons to Hezbollah continues. Therefore Israel will not allow Beirut's airport to open, and will bomb bridges and passes on the Damascus-Beirut road.


Two killed in Katyusha rocket strikes on Haifa:
By Eli Ashkenazi, Yuval Azoulay, Amos Harel, Yoav Stern, Haaretz Correspondents -- 23/07/2006

Two people were killed and several others were wounded as ten Katyusha rockets slammed into Haifa and its suburbs on Sunday morning. A man was killed in Haifa when rocket shrapnel hit his vehicle while he was driving along a main road in Haifa. A second person was killed when a rocket hit a carpentry shop in a suburb of Haifa. Eleven others were hurt in the attack on Haifa, one of them seriously, one moderately, and the rest sustained light wounds.

Earlier Sunday, one person was lightly wounded in a Katyusha rocket strike on Carmiel. Three rockets were also fired at the Upper Galilee. Sirens sounded in Acre, and as far south as Zichron Ya'akov and Binyamina, but were later said to be false alarms.

Some 17 people were wounded Saturday, two of them seriously, as waves of Katyusha strikes - more than 160 rockets - struck targets across the north of Israel.

On Saturday evening, a barrage of rockets landed in Safed, wounding four members of the same family, one of them seriously. Also Saturday evening, rockets hit Nahariya and Carmiel, seriously wounding a Carmiel resident. In a rocket strike earlier in the day, two Carmiel residents were hurt, one moderately and the other lightly, in direct hits on their homes.

One person sustained moderate wounds and three others were lightly hurt as 54 Katyusha rockets landed in Nahariya. In Israel's northernmost city of Kiryat Shmona, six people were lightly injured as approximately 26 rockets landed in and around the city.

Rockets also landed in Safed, Rosh Pina, Ma'alot, the Golan Heights, and the northern Galilee panhandle. Six rockets landed in open areas in Haifa. Alerts were sounded in Acre, Tiberias, and several northern towns and villages to warn residents of possible rocket strikes.

Four people suffered moderate wounds and 12 were lightly hurt by rocket attacks in Haifa on Friday. After a reprieve of nearly a day, Hezbollah renewed its attacks, firing ten rockets into the northern city & its suburbs in two waves. The wounded were taken to Rambam Medical Center, Carmel Medical Center and Bnei Zion Medical Center (Rothschild) for treatment.

Most of the wounded were hurt when a rocket slammed into a central post office branch. Another rocket hit a residential building. No one was in the apartment that was hit in the strike, and no injuries were reported. A third rocket hit a parked car in the city. Shortly after the rocket strike, municipality workers began clearing the rubble.

Hezbollah also fired rockets Friday at the Galilee, where two people were hurt. One person was lightly wounded in Yesod Hama'aleh from rocket shrapnel, and a Rosh Pina resident was very lightly hurt in a strike. Two houses were damaged in the Western Galilee, near Ma'alot. Rockets hit two empty homes in Nahariya, causing no injuries. Rockets also landed in open areas near Safed and Kiryat Shmona, Tiberias, and in the vicinity of Carmiel.


One Israeli's View:
by Bob Rosenschein -- Aish.com -- July 23, 2006

Imagine that Mexico was calling for the destruction of the United States, backing it up with cross-border raids and missiles.

The great Yogi Berra once said, "In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is."

I am not a columnist -- just an ordinary American citizen living in Israel -- but I have gained some insight into both cultures, some might say mentalities. Here is what many Israelis are feeling nowadays.

The first point concerns some unwritten American values I grew up with: Problems are solvable.

Good will is returned in kind.

In general, favor the underdog over the top dog (unless you're the top dog). If two sides are fighting, they must both have some justification. Be reasonable; split the difference.

But what if you are living in a neighborhood where they are not quite as reasonable as you? Where your attempts to reason & split the difference backfire? Or worse, where concession is laughed at as weakness.

The second point concerns Israel in particular. We are 6.6 million people, toughened but pragmatic. At 8,020 square miles, we have an area 25% smaller than Maryland. The difference is that, unlike America's vast power, with oceans and peaceful neighbors on all sides, the Jewish state is surrounded on several sides with people who actually want to kill us.

Not subdue us -- but destroy our country.

It would be convenient to think that this must be because of something we did. But Hamas and Hezbollah say it out loud and crystal clear. The "occupation" is the whole works. Their final solution is the total destruction of Israel. Iran, a member state of the UN, holds conferences called "A World Without Israel."

This is the backdrop against which most civilized countries would have us turn the other cheek. As social writer Eric Hoffer once said, "We really do expect the Jews to be the only good Christians in the world."

To put things in perspective, imagine, if you can, that Arlington lobbed 1,000 shells at Georgetown. Or sent suicide bombers. How exactly would you react? Imagine that Mexico was calling for the destruction of the United States, backing it up with cross-border raids and missiles.

The third point is that Israel already withdrew from every last inch of southern Lebanon and Gaza, as the international community demanded. But the provocations and terror -- violence aimed intentionally against civilian targets -- continued. This is why we entered this conflict. Enough is enough.

This is a horrible situation to be in, fighting Hezbollah behind its human shields. But before bombing southern Lebanon and the Hezbollah neighborhoods of Beirut, Israel dropped leaflets encouraging evacuation. Confronted with terrible choices, we are trying to fight while minimizing civilian casualties.

It was wishful thinking to hope that joining the government would make Hamas and Hezbollah more responsible. Sometimes putting the bully in charge of the playground works, and sometimes it doesn't.

The operative emotion in Israel right now is sadness, sadness for what is being done to us, sadness for what we must do to defend ourselves. The missiles shot at Haifa landed a few miles from the research labs of Intel, IBM, Microsoft and Google. Israelis would much rather continue working on desalination, stroke treatment, and alternative fuels. We would rather that our adversaries developed their own economies pragmatically.

We hate this conflict, but we will not commit suicide. As Golda Meir said, "We will have peace when our enemies love their children more than they hate ours."

My father was a survivor of Auschwitz and Buchenwald, and he was the most optimistic person I ever knew, but he once taught me, "Above all else, when someone threatens to kill you or your loved ones -- just believe him!"

The lesson for America is simple. Do not hide from international responsibility. Do not assume the oceans offer protection. Iran is behind Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, and, of course, the insurgents in Iraq. If Iran gets nuclear bombs, do you want to bet they won't sponsor a radical Islamic group to eradicate American cities?

You want to know what Israelis are thinking? Theory and practice are intertwined. We are on the front line, but we will show patience and strength. That's why 89% of Israelis, Left, Right and Center, support the army right now. A mere 61 years and 10 weeks after V-E day, we know that evil and blind hatred exist. And that they can be beaten.

Author Biography:
Bob Rosenschein is CEO of Answers.com.
This piece reflects his own views.


[From my Conservative Synagogue, Kehillat Shalva, in Safed.....]

23 July, 2006 - War in the North - Introduction:

This is a special bulletin being sent out by members of Kehillat Shalva, the Masorti (Conservative) synagogue in Safed, Upper Galilee, in the north of Israel. We felt we wanted to give our overseas friends and supporters a first-hand view of our experience of living in this war- zone. This is a personal initiative of members of our congregation.

Kehillat Shalva is one of three Masorti congregations in Western and Upper Galilee (the other two are Kfar Vradim and Karmiel). All our communities are enduring daily missile-barrages from Hizbollah: our daily lives disrupted, our homes hit, people wounded and living in fear of the next Katyusha falling... But we are still here. We hold the fort for the Masorti Movement in the north.

1. War in the north - 21 July 2006, Zefat

It's Friday morning, tenth day of this war against the Hizbullah, and our world here is a cacophony of noise. Most of the sounds come from the sky and we are all hypersensitive now, and jumpy, as we try to determine if the noise is a threat or not: is it them shelling us, is it us pounding them, is it one of our planes going over on a mission, helicopters surveying the damage, or a crop-spraying plane spreading water on fires lit by missiles? Or was it just a door slamming?

We have had many sirens after the katuysha missiles fell and we have had sirens warning us they might fall but we haven't heard the all- clear, and we know that in a modern war like this, we wont. The ramifications are too broad.

Missile attacks from Gaza on Southern Israel have not abated. The attack in the north was designed to keep our army fighting on several fronts at once. And yet, I never imagined that in Zefat, our beautiful, but one-horse town, high in the Galil mountains, with its clean air and lack of entertainment for the teenagers(!), that we would become the target of Iran's proxy army in Lebanon, the Hizbullah. One of my students (I am an English teacher) comes from Avivim, scene of bloody fighting on the border, fighting which is going on as I write and still claiming valuable lives. She has been evacuated : a 21st century wandering Jew, being bussed from town to town, to receive hospitality, away from the front line, but yearning to go home. So, both my student and Kehillat Shalva, seemingly tiny cogs in the wheels of the world, are embroiled in an initiative orchestrated by Iran, aided and abetted by Syria, which aims to spread across the whole globe, and which certainly doesn't have local peoples' interests at heart.

Every now and then there is a moment of quiet: you can hear the birds singing, our dog stops shaking and you could almost think we were back to 'normality'. But, as The Jerusalem Post quoted Winston Churchill speaking in 1942 - "This is not the end. It's not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps the end of the beginning". We hope that the world is waking up to the broader meaning and goals of Islamic Fundamentalism - we are going to need a more joint effort to fight it. Stephanie Chait, Kehillat Shalva

2. "Peace for Israel" War - 22, July 2006:

A Letter from the Front

We are now in the 10th day of this war. A war that came without prior warning and caught most of us unprepared, after the kidnapping of one of our soldiers on the Gaza front and then two more from the Northern border and the shooting of rockets on the north of Israel.

However, to the Israeli population, and especially of the North we cannot use the word "surprise"!

A little bit of history - after the UN resolution 1559 stating that the Hezballa terrorist organisation had to be disbanded etc. and its soldiers had to move out of Northern Lebanon, nothing happened. The Israeli army pulled out leaving the Northern front open and without any protection. Instead of the world demanding the implementation of the resolution -- there was silence. What happened is that the Hezballa moved into the abandoned Israeli outposts etc. and stationed themselves right on our border. Anyone driving down the Northern Road could see these terrorists sitting there, watching every movement. It is an awful feeling, as if at any minute one could be attacked. The world sat back. We did our part and that is that! Our patience was wearing thin. Nobody is going to help us, we have to help ourselves.

The Israeli population in general is in agreement with this intervention. We are continuously giving in. After destroying our villages and moving our people out from the Gaza strip we expected quietness on the part of the Palestinians, but instead rockets have been raining on Sderot and that area ever since. Where is the world's intervention -- nothing! So again we have gone in to Gaza to protect our people. But we are blamed! Now it is the same in the North of Israel. The world thinks we are fools?

Up till yesterday 300 rockets have fallen, just in the Safad area. Most of them have fallen in open ground but unfortunately one or two have been direct hits and there have been fatalities, with a few children injured. About 50% of the population has left, mostly families with children or elderly people. To sit in a bomb shelter 24 hours a day is quite unpleasant and frustrating in many ways. The population that is left is sitting it out. David, my husband, is a Professor in a Laboratory on the Kinneret, and as both Tiberias and Safad are targets he has decided it is better to stay at home.

As you will see from our bulletin from the War Zone, most of Kehillat Shalva's congregation has stayed. We are in constant contact with each other by telephone or e-mail and are trying to help families who cannot reach vital facilities due to the infrequency of public transport. Many of the Kehillah members work in sensitive or emergency positions, either doctors, psychologists etc. I work in the pharmacy of the Safad Hospital, in charge of the medicine inventory. As the hospital is on the front line we receive injured civilians and soldiers so there is a 24 hour alert. A few days ago a "miracle" happened. About 10.30 in the evening, during a rain of rockets, there was a phone call asking me if I knew where the rockets had landed. It seems one landed on the roof of the pharmacy! Thank goodness not only was it at night, and nobody was inside, but it landed on the only cement block on the roof, so did not penetrate. It made extensive damage to all the windows of the hospital but luckily nobody was injured.

As I am sitting here typing this letter our dogs are very scared, bombs and sirens can be heard again.

May we end this war quickly and without too much loss of life. My soldier daughter has many friends from her year in the army. All of us are one family, either from friendship, from relationship or just neighbours, so whatever happens to one person it is felt by everyone.

3. War in the North: View from Kehillat Shalva:

Today is the 11th day of the war in the north. I'm writing this from my home in Safed (Tzfat) - my apartment over the Kehillat Shalva Masorti synagogue. If a siren sounds or I hear the explosion of a falling missile, I shall run downstairs to my "sheltered area": the back part of the synagogue. My folding bed is already down there, and I sleep there at nights. This is a sturdy old 2-storey building with thick stone walls, and the lower part is set back into the hillside, so I feel as safe there as anywhere these days...

Safed is within the "kav ha-imut" [confrontation-line] area, which embraces the entire area north of the Akko-Ammiad-Tiberias road. Since the situation started, all residents of this area have been ordered to remain in bomb-shelters or sheltered areas (inner rooms) in their homes, to minimise risk of injury from shrapnel or shattered glass. We are able to go out for short times each day, to do shopping or other vital errands. Essential services, such as supermarkets, pharmacies, post office, banks, are open. People who wish to go to work may do so, provided their work-place has a bomb-shelter or protected area.

I ventured out this morning, to pick up 2 members of our congregation who need to travel to Haifa today for a hospital appointment and to collect special medications. They are recent immigrants from California, they don't have a car, and their house is up on an exposed hilltop not far from an army base - so they were very relieved I could drive them to the bus station! It was only a 10-minute drive, which in normal times one would think nothing of..... but in these tense days, every time one ventures outside, there is the constant thought in one's mind: will I get back safely?? will a missile fall on me??? And in fact I drove past a couple of Katyusha craters in the road, one of them only a couple of hundred metres from our synagogue...

Being so close to the northern border, we get *no* advance warning of incoming missiles: by the time a siren sounds, the missile has generally already landed! Yesterday, more than 100 missiles fell on the north of Israel - several of them in or around Safed. Providentially, many are falling on open ground and causing no injuries or damage (except for starting fires in the dry vegetation) - but yesterday in Safed, one home did receive a direct hit, the missile exploded in their living- room, and the severely injured family were taken to hospital... so the danger is *very real*.

My family and friends abroad ask me if it's "quiet" where I live. In one sense, it is all too quiet... the streets of Safed are virtually deserted, most normal activity suspended... Many hours can go by without any incoming missiles, and we get lulled into an unreal feeling of "normality".... However, the apparent calm is an illusion: suddenly, literally out of the blue, a siren sounds, a boom is heard, a rocket falls... and we are back into the grim reality of the situation. We become super-sensitive to every small sound.... even when it's quiet, we are constantly waiting for the next alarm...

Our little Shalva community keeps in touch among ourselves by phone and email - we phone each other after every alarm: "are you okay? did you hear that missile? was it near you?..." We don't know how long the situation will continue... but we are hanging in here for as long as it takes.... Margaret Hayon - Kehillat Shalva, Safed (Tzfat), northern Israel.

Please pass this bulletin on to your congregations and your friends. We very much appreciate your continuing support!!! Any responses: please email margaret@actcom.co.il, and I will pass them on to our community. Kehillat Shalva Masorti Synagogue, Tzfat (Safed), Upper Galilee, North Israel.


How we fell into the Iranian trap:
By Akiva Eldar --
Haaretz -- July 23, 2006

The following is an assortment of telltale signs of the Iranian-Syrian scheme, executed by Hamas and Hezbollah, to ignite the Arab-Israeli arena. All of the signs converge on a single event in time - the G8 gathering. It is hard to tell which is more serious - that the political and military leadership saw the signs and disregarded them, or that it did not see them at all.

On July 21, on the morning of the attack in northern Israel, the conservative Iranian newspaper, Jomhuri Islami, chose to print a speech given by Hassan Nasrallah on May 23. The secretary-general of Hezbollah declared that "all of Israel is now within range of our missiles... We possess a more than adequate stock of arms, both qualitatively and quantitatively... Over 2 million Jews live in northern Israel, where there are centers of leisure and touring activities, factories, agriculture, important military airfields and army bases... Our presence in south Lebanon, contiguous to the northern part of occupied Palestine, is our most important stronghold."

On July 11, following his meeting with Javier Solana, the individual who holds the nuclear portfolio in the Iranian cabinet, Ali Larijani, departed for a surprise visit to Damascus. Following the visit, Syrian Vice-President Farouk a-Shara announced that "the resistance movements in Lebanon and in Palestine [namely, Hezbollah and Hamas - A.E.] will make the decisions on their own affairs."

That same day, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad threatened the Western states in a television broadcast, warning them against supporting Israel, as "the fury of the Muslim peoples is not limited to the borders of the region... the waves of the explosion... will reach the corrupt forces [the Western states] that support this counterfeit regime."

On July 3, Hossein Shariatmadari, editor of the Kayhan newspaper and a close associate of Iranian leader Ali Khamenei, wrote that "we mustn't respond to Israel's crimes only in Gaza, only in the occupied lands. Why should the Zionists feel secure when Muslims have no security?"

In an interview with the Iranian news agency, Mehr, Shariatmadari said that the Islamic world should not restrict its response to the Zionist attacks only to the Gaza Strip, but should create a situation in which "no Zionist will feel safe, anywhere in the world."

He said that the UN was ineffective, because "all of its laws are interpreted to the benefit of those who speak with militancy, and Israel's attack in the Gaza Strip merits a mere expression of sorrow."

On June 16, the Asharq Al Awsat newspaper reported the signing of an agreement on military cooperation between Syria and Iran "to repulse the threats [of the U.S. and Israel]."

The newspaper emphasized that among other subjects, talks held in Tehran between the Syrian defense minister, Hassan Turkmani, and his Iranian counterpart, Mustafa Mohammed Najjar, focused on the situation in Lebanon and in Palestine, and on assistance to Hamas and to Jihad in their confrontation with the Fatah movement. The Syrian minister officially declared "a common front against Israel's threats... Iran views Syria's security as its own security."

Asharq Al Awsat also reported that the minister had visited Tehran at the head of a large delegation accompanied by military and intelligence officers, and had met there with government and army leaders. The newspaper reported that Iran had agreed to underwrite the purchase of military hardware for Syria from Russia, China and Ukraine, in addition to equipping the Syrian army with artillery, ammunition, military vehicles and missiles of Iranian manufacture. Iran would also help to train Syrian naval forces.

Black on white:

Syria publicly announced that it had extended its previous agreements with Iran on easing the passage of trucks conveying Iranian weapons into Lebanon. There it was - black on white.

All of these signs have been documented in the offices of MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute, in Jerusalem. Yigal Carmon, the founder and director of the institute who spent many years in the defense establishment, placed a call soon after the Hamas attack at Kerem Shalom to a cabinet minister with whom he is acquainted. He informed the minister of his hypothesis that Hamas' deviation from its cease-fire policy (which at the time was expressed in its acceptance of the Prisoners' Document) was related to the pressure placed on Iran vis-a-vis its nuclear program.

Carmon told the minister-friend that he perceived an escalation in the threats voiced by Iran, increasing in volume as the date grew closer for Iran's response to the G8 on its nuclear program. He implored the minister to speak with his counterparts around the cabinet table, asking them to bite their lips until after the meeting in Brussels between the diplomatic coordinator of the EU, Javier Solana, and the secretary of the National Security Council of Iran, Ali Larijani.

"I told him it was important for the Europeans to understand that the Iranians have not intention of responding to the American compromise proposal," says Carmon, reconstructing the conversation. "I told him that in my assessment, if there was an Iranian plan to repulse the international pressure, then we could expect a threat to develop on our northern sector as well."

Three days later, at the height of Operation Summer Rains (in Gaza), the minister telephoned the MEMRI offices in Jerusalem. "You and your doomsday prophecies," the minister teased.

The very next day, Hezbollah attacked along the Lebanese border, and Carmon, once again asked to maintain restraint. Carmon also assesses that the acts of terror in Iraq, directed by Iran's Shi'ite proxies, led by Muqtada al-Sader, are also related to the nuclear issue. He predicts that before long, the Iranians will unleash terror attacks on Jewish and Israeli targets around the world.

"We are witnessing a most serious failure of our leaders. They allowed the State of Israel to fall into the Iranian trap by responding to Iran's provocation. It was intended to disrupt the discussions of the G8 that were supposed to form an international consensus against the Iranian nuclear program. A responsible leadership would have delayed the response by several weeks, and not played into the Iranian's hands.

"We missed the opportunity to expose the Iranian provocations before the G8, and the entire world. We can always go back and launch strikes in Lebanon later on. It would have been possible to set an ultimatum that if the soldiers are not returned within a short period of time, then we will do everything in our power to bring them back. In the meantime, we could have made arrangements for the home front, which was caught unprepared, and deployed three divisions on the border with Syria.

"The public is not stupid. It would have understood that a threat to four million people as a result of the Iranian nuclear program is more serious than the killing of soldiers in the north and the kidnapping of their comrades."

The explanation for Iran's stubborn insistence on delaying its response to the American proposal until August 22 may be found in the Iranian media. In the past few weeks, reports have been published about an imminent declaration by Ahmadinejad about a "significant development in Iran's nuclear capability."

Carmon estimates that they might need another few weeks to finalize their capacity to fully or partially enrich uranium, independent of any other country. It might also have something to do with completing the development of advanced missiles.

Fear or anger:

When he heard the prime minister say on Tuesday that the crisis in the north is an "Iranian trick," Carmon did not know if he should be shaking with fear or exploding with anger.

"It isn't a trick from the Beitar Jerusalem soccer pitch," he says, furious with Ehud Olmert. "It worries me that even the president of the United States, the leader of the free world, doesn't understand that we aren't talking here about Hezbollah 'shit,' or about regional tensions, but about a crisis on a global scale."

"The current crisis has the makings of being able to create a new order in the region, or even a global conflict," stated a MEMRI position paper released yesterday. It refers to the danger of the traditional allies of the United States - Saudi Arabia and Egypt - losing their senior regional status to Iran, which is in the midst of an advanced process of acquiring nuclear capability.

At the same time, Russia, which is described as an ally of Iran, is once again taking up position against the United States, as a world power that wields influence in the Middle East and in Europe, where Russia is the principal supplier of oil and gas.

As such, the structure of a dual-superpower world is being revived, complete with all the rivalry between the East and West blocs in the Middle East that was characteristic of the Cold War era.

Disregard of this threat is especially worrisome to Carmon, as all of this information is openly available to all, including the well-established weapons trail from Syria to Lebanon that was "suddenly" discovered by IDF generals, who have termed it a "smuggling" route.

Carmon believes that if decision-makers in the government and the army had considered the Iranian involvement, they would have understood that every Iranian missile, including the C-802 that hit the Israeli missile boat, would be in the possession of Hezbollah.

"There are no tricks here," he rails. "The idea is to finally internalize the fact that the IDF is fighting against an Iranian militia, with the logistical support of Iran. The United States has to understand that Putin is working to build a center for uranium enrichment in Siberia, and that Russia is Iran's main supporter. Russia has 6,000 experts there, and knows how to keep its Iranian ally in a sensitive spot. They are certain that we could not endure a home front war, as the Arabs and the Iranians would. In the Iran-Iraq War, two million Moslems died."

Carmon is concerned that a few days from now, after it has finished wearing down our air force, Iran, in cahoots with Russia, will "volunteer" to settle the crisis between Israel and Hezbollah, and in exchange for these "glass beads" would win the real diamond - advancing its nuclear program.

Carmon also sees significance in the exposure of Iranian and Syrian involvement in the crisis. He believes Israel must pressure the U.S. to bring the G-8 into a special meeting to reach a firm decision against Iran's nuclear program and support of terror groups. Only Iran can stop Hezbollah, and only the U.S. can stop Iran. [But, so can we!!!!]


The spirit of the King David Hotel
By Tom Segev -- Haaretz -- July 23, 2006

The terror attack on the King David Hotel in Jerusalem was in its day the equivalent of the Twin Towers; yesterday was its 60th anniversary. There are two historic plaques at the hotel, one of whose wings was used by the British Mandate authority. On one of the plaques, which has been hanging there for some time, a few words note the terror attack: "On July 22, 1946, the Etzel underground bombed the southern wing." The action is attributed to Etzel alone, but there is no condemnation. "Underground" generally has a positive connotation.

The unveiling of the other plaque this week was meant to cap an academic conference held at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center on the issue of who is a freedom fighter and who is a terrorist. It was quite a week to clarify such a question. They can be distinguished by organizational affiliation, goals, targets, means of combat and mode of operation. They all assume that a freedom fighter is a good person and a terrorist is a bad one. Nearly every terrorist defines himself as a freedom fighter, and vice versa: freedom fighters are usually defined as terrorists. So was Begin. He invested a lot of effort to convince history that he was not a terrorist. Among other things, he emphasized that his organization did not harm civilians. There's a thesis that could serve as an historic lesson from a moral standpoint: not harming civilians.

The new plaque identifies the perpetrators of the attack as "Etzel fighters." It's important for them to emphasize that they acted "under orders from the Hebrew rebel movement," in other words, the Hagannah, among others. They called the hotel switchboard, the editorial offices of the Palestine Post, and the French Embassy (presumably they meant the consulate) "to prevent casualties." In other words, they sought a terrorist attack without casualties, but something went wrong. Twenty-five minutes went by and then "for some reason" the British did not evacuate the building "and as a result" 91 people were "regrettably" killed. There were 28 British, 41 Arabs, 17 Jews and five others. To emphasize the military aspect of the operation, the plaque notes that one of the Etzel people was killed "in an exchange of fire."

The British government is demanding the plaque's removal. Her Majesty's ambassador and the consul have written to the mayor of Jerusalem that such an act of terror cannot be honored, even if it was preceded by a warning. To this day, it is not clear what made the bombing's planners believe the British would evacuate the building. Would Benjamin Netanyahu, as prime minister, have ordered his bureau evacuated on the basis of telephone threat from a Palestinian terror group?

Netanyahu spoke at the conference. The difference between a terrorist operation and a legitimate military action is expressed, he said, in the fact that the terrorists intend to harm civilians whereas legitimate combatants try to avoid that. According to that theory, the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier by a Palestinian organization is a legitimate military operation, and the bombing of Dresden, Hanoi, Haifa or Beirut is a war crime. Of course this is not what Netanyahu meant. He learned only this from the bombing of the hotel: that the Arabs are bad and we are good.

Arab actions starting in 1920 and through the Iranian nuclear plan reflect, in his words, "a terrorist mentality." Israel, on the other hand, only harms civilians by accident or when there is no alternative. For example, when terrorists hide among civilians.


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Tehran's Ties / Hezbollah's supply line:
By Ze'ev Schiff (Haaretz) -- Gamla -- July 23, 2006

Ever since the fighting began, Iran has been transferring rockets and other ammunition to Hezbollah via Syria. The war materiel moves into Lebanon on trucks from Syria, but much of it is being destroyed by the Israel Defense Forces.

The Iranian resupply effort should not be interpreted as stemming from a serious Hezbollah logistical plight. There are no indications that Hezbollah is running out of rockets, though it may need other equipment. It is possible that the supplies are meant to build up Hezbollah's arsenal in case the war turns into one of attrition.

Iran's embassy in Beirut is coordinating Tehran's involvement in the fighting against Israel. The families of the Iranian advisers have been evacuated, but it is unlikely that Israel will take the extreme step of targeting the Iranian embassy. Iran's Revolutionary Guards also provide constant intelligence and logistical report to Hezbollah s foreign operations unit.

The meaning of Tehran's support is that it is very important to Iran that Hezbollah not be crushed during this confrontation. There are signs suggesting that both Tehran and Damascus are worried that Hezbollah will be worn out by the fighting. Therefore, Iran is pressuring Syria not to acquiesce to diplomatic offers that are meant to pressure or influence Hezbollah and Hamas to hold back on their attacks against Israel.

It is not clear whether Tehran was party to Hezbollah's decision to refrain, for now, from launching rockets capable of striking Tel Aviv and targets further south. The intelligence agencies have not been able to provide a definite answer to this. So far, only debris from a Fajr-3 missile, which has a 45 kilometer range and a relatively small warhead, has been found inside Israel.

Air force attacks have destroyed long-range rockets, including Zelzals 1 and 2, but Hezbollah operatives have not been seen trying to launch such missiles against Israel. The Zelzal 2 has a particularly long range, capable of hitting the outskirts of Be'er Sheva.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah has used Syrian-made 220-millimeter rockets, which hit Haifa and its environs. Hezbollah received several hundred of these rockets, which come in two models.


The Middle East Crisis - Local, Regional, and Global; Conventional and Nuclear (2): The War in the Perception of Iran, Syria, and Hizbullah --
Gamla,-- July 23, 2006
By Y.Carmon, A. Savyon, N. Toobiyan and Y.Mansharof (MEMRI)* "By attacking Lebanon, the Zionist regime triggered its own extinction." Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, IRNA, July 23, 2006.

In the 1980s the Soviet Union was defeated in Afghanistan by a religious Sunni popular militia armed with large quantities of sophisticated weaponry, with Saudi and American support.

Today, this same mode of warfare is being utilized to great effect by Hizbullah, a religious Shiite popular militia which is armed with large quantities of sophisticated weaponry, with Iranian and Russian support.

Russia has not only been the backbone of the Iranian nuclear program; it is also providing the primary diplomatic umbrella for Hizbullah and Iran's activities. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has gone so far as to claim that there is no connection between Iran and Hizbullah. Russia also does not include Hizbullah in its list of terrorist organizations.

However, the Hizbullah model differs from the Afghanistan model in one important respect: the depth of the ties between the "client" militia and the "sponsor" country. While the ties between the Afghani mujahideen and Saudi Arabia were basically ephemeral ties of religious affiliation, the ties between Iran and Hizbullah are an open-ended religious and strategic symbiosis.

Hizbullah is not an independent Lebanese organization. It is part and parcel of the Iranian state, and Iran sees in Hizbullah "one of the mainstays of its strategic security." Hizbullah is "Iran's first line of defense against Israel" and the West.(1) One of Hizbullah's founders, Subhi Al-Tufeili, stated in an interview that "Hizbullah's leadership is Velayat-e-Faqih - that is, Ali Khamenei."(2)

For these reasons, Iran was even willing to commit itself to a joint military pact with Syria in order to assure the steady flow of weapons to Hizbullah. The agreement was signed one month before the outbreak of the war, and the Iranian and Syrian defense ministers announced on the occasion of the signing that "Iran sees Syria's security as its own."(3)

In the 1980s, the mujahideen saw the Afghan communist regime as a Soviet implant, lacking any true hold in the area. In Iran's perception, Israel is likewise a foreign, Western implant with no true roots in the region.

If Hizbullah is not crushed, then it, Syria, Iran, and many others in the Middle East will see this as a victory of the "resistance" over the IDF, its American weapons, and its American sponsor. This will reinforce, in the view of the Iranians and of Hizbullah, their belief that Israel is bereft of any real strength.

In a speech on February 1, 2006, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad labeled the superpowers and countries that wished to deny Iran its rights (to nuclear development) "superpowers made of straw." Hizbullah Secretary-General Nasrallah, for his part, has often called Israel "a spider-web state" - one that can easily be destroyed.

On the regional level, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad represents the "Second Islamic Revolution," which strives to export the revolution beyond Iran's borders. Ahmadinejad sees himself as walking in the path of the architect of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini, who made exporting the revolution one of the fundamental elements of his vision.(4) Thus, in Iran's view, the fighting in Lebanon is not just a confrontation with Israel. It is part of the struggle for hegemony in the Middle East.

It should be pointed out that several Sunni Arab leaders (among them King 'Abdallah of Jordan, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, and apparently the Saudi foreign minister as well) have recently taken note of the Shiite dimension in the latest regional developments. King 'Abdallah even warned of an Iranian bid to create a "Shiite crescent" in the Middle East.

*Y. Carmon is President of MEMRI; A. Savyon is Director of MEMRI's Iranian Media Project; N. Toobiyan and Y.Mansharof are MEMRI Iranian Studies Department Research Fellows.

(1) Al-Sharq Al-Awsat (London), May 11, 2006.
(2) http://www.memritv.org/search.asp?ACT=s9&P1=1132.

Sandy Rosen-Hazen lives in Safed. Contact her at Sandy@israel.net

To Go To Top

Posted by Professor Eugene Narrett, July 23, 2006.

World War III began even before WW I and got into high gear immediately after the armistice. WW II should be seen as a major spike in what we will for familiarity's sake denote WW III: the war of lies against the Jewish people.

At least in its major, European theatre, WW II was in many respects a war against the Jews in which England and Germany collaborated. In this they had the assistance or acquiescence of many other powers (and petty states), the Vatican, France, Spain, Russia, Turkey and, sadly, America.

Since the Jews in Israel won their independence, but not full sovereignty in 1948, WW III has intensified and become identifiable for what it has been: the War of Lies against the Jewish people that is the last stage of Western civilization and the onset of a new and terrible hi-tech Tower of Babel...

It is ironic and sad that the French Foreign Minister, having just been missed by a rocket in Haifa is heading, with his British Foreign Office counterpart for talks with PM Olmert and the Foreign Minister of Israel, Livni. It is ironic because Israel is the main target of WW III, the War of Lies that the governments of Europe, with the eventual massive assistance of the US Department of State have been waging on the Jewish people since Russia published the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" (1903; circulating in its current anti-Semitic form since the 1880s) and since the long term perversion by Britain (1920 - 48) of its League of Nations Mandate to establish a National Home for the Jewish people.

Given the genocidal perfidy of the British, it is particularly tragic that the warriors in the IDF serve as hamburger helper for the fading British grand game of creating a huge British dependency from Mesopotamia to the Suez Canal and Cairo, and from Mosul to Aden.

That's right: Israel not only is fighting the war to save western civilization while the powers of this same civilization condemn and cripple its efforts; it is fighting specifically to save the neo-Imperial dream of the Anglo-American diplomatic - corporate - New Age elites to create a global security state directed mainly by them and their proxies.

The game is going very badly, even with the enormous conscription, during the 1930s - 40s of the industrial and economic might and idealism of America to the British game. It is failing for two reasons: 1) the relentless, insane hatred of Jews within Britain (long since spread throughout the culture by the Foreign Office and its sway over British media); and 2) because the Russians, the original and still primary competitor of the British for world sway have made more effective alliances with the Islamic regimes that Britain created and whose cohesion results mainly from Islam's genocidal rage against Jews.

One could write a massive and depressing tome chronicling the genocidal slander of Jews and the ostensibly Jewish state in the western, let alone the communist and Islamic media. Too many examples even to note the familiar catch phrases here. No: here we will merely note the geo-political outlines of the bungling and treacherous British game and how it is writ large in the battles of today, -- battles that the Europeans, with State Department assistance, are committed to seeing Israel lose.

For the end of the end game, read on...

After WW I the British broke up the remains of the Ottoman Empire, the last of many Turkish dynasties to exercise Imperial sway over the Middle East, northern Africa and the Balkans. With Russia embroiled in its Civil War, France exhausted, Italy incapable and America disgusted, Britain had the board to itself. Their Foreign Office created a congeries of states with no basis in genuine nations, peoples or ethnicities. (A nation is a group of people united by a common language, history, rituals or religion, and strong sense of group identity and difference).

The list of artificial and therefore unstable states created by the British is long and, by now, familiar: "Saudi" Arabia, Kuwait, "Iraq" (the word means "the edge," it was the Turkish name for the provincial in central Mesopotamia), the Gulf states, Syria, and TransJordan. The last-named is particularly noteworthy because it was carved out of the Jewish National Home to reward an ostensibly pro-British chieftain from Mecca. One of his brothers was made King of the new dependency of "Iraq" which incorporated what had first been intended to be an Armenian nation (later, Kurdistan: the province of Mosul), as well as the province of Basra, even then a Shi'ite area.

The only state that the British did not create and support was also the only genuine and ancient nation within the former Ottoman Empire, -- Israel. In fact, the British did and have continued, with the assorted help of Germany, France, America and jihad to do everything to abort it.

The most signal achievement of British diplomatic /corporate / media perfidy has been to facilitate the shoah and to keep the Jews of Israel in a constant war of attrition, for as is clear, Israel is not allowed to reap the fruits of victory in war. Indeed, at this point the western powers make sure Israel is led by self-avowed defeatists who refuse to declare and wage war even when their nation is attacked and half of it is in bomb shelters.

Israel will not be allowed to conquer Hezbollah and to rid the world of the artificial, unstable, terror-exporting states of Syria and Lebanon.

The other main 'achievement' of the lies, the artificial states the British have imposed on world history and events is to create constant instability that provided and continues to provide an opening that the skillful and consciousless Russians adeptly exploit. Thus, the arc of Anglo-American dependencies and "allies," from Persia/Iran to Egypt has crumbled. Iran and Syria are Russian protectorates and funnels for Russian weapons. All the European powers had their hands in Mesopotamia / "Iraq" until the American invasion of 2003 and the USA has re-opened that state to European influence and commerce although it often works with Russia and against the Anglo-Ameircan interests.

The situation now is that, just as Americans are bleeding in "Iraq," so the Jews of Israel, hamstrung logistically and operationally by the West are fighting and bleeding for the remnants of the Anglo-American project in Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Such is the genocidal and suicidal nature of the "grand game" that Britain and its colony, the State Department (which also may be defined as a colony of the House of Saud) continue to cripple Israel even as it fights for them and as Russia triumphs across the north of the Middle East, turning Hamas and Hezbollah on and off to suit its plans and to keep America reeling.


Because the overarching goal of the British - American project is to destroy all vestiges of sovereignty and Judaism in the operations of Israel and to square the circle by integrating it into the arc of Anglo-American dependencies. This cannot be done: and while the British have honed the art of imperial sway by crisis management, the current task is too flammable for them or anyone. They are going down and taking the Jews with them.

Out of the ashes will come a global security state in which there will be no security. Perhaps British and Eurabian diplomats welcome this and will be glad to coordinate with Russia to extract state control of human resources from the resulting state of endless war.

They will call this "peace," or "security" and its regions, "prosperity and free trade zones."

America still is mostly healthy at the grass roots but its political-corporate-media-academic elites will not let it destroy the jihadist regimes in Teheran and Arabia that faciliate the world's spin into incessant violence and terror. Thus the game grinds on...

As we wrote, WW III is the War of Lies (and blood), the war against the name, identity, history and saving principles of Judaism that are to be buried so this new world disorder can reign.

Call it "Tower of Babble Redux."

Dr. Eugene Narrett writes: "My most recent book, "Israel and the Endtimes" provides background on the matters discussed above. Go to www.israelendtimes.com." Contact him at Culturtalk@aol.com

To Go To Top

Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 23, 2006.

The question posed: is there a way to stop the Hezbollah and their Lebanese [civilians] patrons preposterous "rules of war engagements" strategy and the continuous myopic perception of the international community at large?

This below is from Don Morris (gsdmorris@hotmail.com); it came July 19, 2006.

We all agree -- least I think we do -- war is ugly, inhumane, and it does not present humanity in a fine light. We have entered a new era that requires new definitions of war combatants and civilians. I say this because civilians have been and are currently being killed in numbers that are alarming those in the media.

I have several questions to ask of the international community:

* If a civilian allows his or her home to be used as a rocket or arms staging area, does this make the civilian a combatant?

* If a civilian receives payment for allowing his or her property to assist a country's enemy does this change the definition of the civilian?

* If the enemy does not distinguish himself from the native population by way of a uniform, if the enemy uses the individuals as cover, how should these people be labelled?

* If these "civilians" are part of the enemy how can you count them as civilian deaths?

* Does everything I have so far asked begs a response that sounds like, "of course these are civilians, any one with a proper perspective knows this- what is wrong with your thinking?" If this is so, why have you, who criticize this thinking, ignored the clear and explicitly defined rules of war as outlined in agreed upon international law?

* Hezzbolah, with the collaboration and assistance of Syria and Iran, has engaged in all of the above -where is your concern? Actually if you care so much about the civilians why are you not enraged and putting the pressure where it belongs-on Hezzbolah, Syria and Iran?

* Anything short of this falls in the category of hypocrisy and you are simply prolonging the human suffering. I question your intentions and your moral fiber! Yes, Hamas, Fatah and the PA all fall into the same preceding.

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

To Go To Top

Posted by Yechiel Spira, July 23, 2006.

Thousands of IDF soldiers have been called to active reserve duty, thereby freeing up compulsory service soldiers for redeployment to the north.

Defense Minister Amir Peretz has authorized the continuation of the ground forces incursion into southern Lebanon, as elite units continue to operate on the ground, near Israel's northern border, seeking to push Hizbullah back while destroying the terror organizations infrastructure.

Five Egoz Soldiers Killed in Fighting

In heavy fighting in the Maroun a-Ras area near Moshav Avivim last Thursday (20 July), five IDF soldiers fell in the line of duty. It was originally reported that four soldiers were killed but early Sunday morning; the IDF Spokesperson's Office confirmed the body of a fifth member of the elite Sayeret Egoz was located, officially raising the death toll to five. Also operating in southern Lebanon are paratroopers, tanks and other specialized forces.

Some 5,000 reservists were activated with tzav-8 emergency call-up orders on Friday. The reservists will be deployed in areas throughout Judea and Samaria, freeing younger compulsory duty soldiers to join the effort against Hizbullah in the north.

Hizbullah is a Formidable Enemy

The battle will be a difficult one since Hizbullah has had six years to prepare, since then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak ordered the unilateral Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon. The area is mined and there are bombs powerful enough to destroy the underbellies of Israel's tanks, as was seen ten days ago when the crew of a Merkavah-3 tank was burned alive when a 200kg (120 lbs) bomb was detonated near Israel's northern border.

It is also known that Russian-built Kornet missiles were sold to Syria. The laser-guided missiles manufactured in the 1990s are equipped with a thermal sight. They pose a threat to even the most advanced tank.

A Sabbath of Heavy Rocket Attacks

The Sabbath brought another heavy day of rocket attacks, with over 160 rockets striking northern cities between 10:00am-7:00pm. Property damage was extensive, and dozens of people were injured, including two who were listed in serious condition on Saturday night.

Thousands of Israelis have fled their homes in Haifa and other cities, explaining the relatively low number of people killed and wounded in rocket attacks. Israel Police beginning Sunday will be increasing the number of personnel deployed in northern cities, primarily to prevent looting and break-ins.

Magen David Adom emergency medical service officials reported on Saturday night that since the start of the current Hizbullah warfare, on 12 July, 28 Israeli civilians and security personnel have been killed and 674 wounded in rocket attacks.

14 victims were seriously wounded, 31 moderate, 204 light and the remainder treated for varying levels of anxiety and hysteria

Ground Forces Deployment a Must

Military experts agree that while the air forces continues to dismantle the Hizbullah infrastructure from the air, ground forces must be brought into the picture if the terror organization is to be brought to it knees. Last week's emergency call-up of thousands of soldiers signals this stage may be beginning, with members of the General Staff warning fighting will be difficult against Hizbullah but there is no alternative.

Having carried out some 3,000 sorties and striking over 1,800 targets, the air force continues to strike at Hizbullah in all areas of Lebanon, in many cases successfully wiping out longer-range rockets and launchers on the ground, eliminating potential strikes by the terror organization against the Greater Tel Aviv area.

Hizbullah Continues Using Civilians as Shields

IDF Chief of Staff Lt-General Dan Halutz last week stated Operation Change of Direction was moving ahead, warning the process will take some time. The military commander stated once again that Hizbullah continues to base itself in civilian population areas, making Israel's job increasingly more difficult as the IDF takes measures to avoid collateral damage to civilians. Halutz added that the terror organization frequently places Katyusha rockets and launchers inside mosques, another technique aimed at enlisting the support of the international community against Israel.

US Remains Firmly Behind Israel

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected in Israel to begin steps towards a ceasefire, but media reports are signaling US President George W. Bush is not planning to pressure Jerusalem to halt the operation at present. Rice will focus on Lebanon following the Israeli offensive, traveling from Israel to Rome where she will meet with United Nations officials and representatives of Arab states to discuss the rehabilitation of Lebanon.

President Bush in his remarks blames Iran and Syria for standing in the way of a ceasefire, stating it is they who threaten the stability of the entire Middle East. American lawmakers have come out in support of Israel's operation, seeing the destruction of Hizbullah as a major step in combating global Islamic terror.

Israel Seeks to Minimize Civilian Casualities

For the past days, Israel has used taped telephone messages, leaflets and radio broadcasts to persuade southern Lebanese area residents to head north before the fighting increases, signaling Jerusalem's plan to cleanse southern Lebanon of Hizbullah. Israeli officials are indicating heavier air force bombardments are to be expected since Hizbullah's arsenal is well placed within civilian communities, which will be targeted as Israel seeks to eliminate thousands of rockets on the ground.

While analysts and military experts agree Hizbullah will not be totally eliminated, the direct threat along Israel's border can be removed and the terror organization can be weakened enough to permit the Government of Lebanon to deploy its forces along Israel's border in compliance with United Nations Resolution 1559.

Yechiel Spira writes for Arutz-Sheva (www.IsraelNN.com).

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Posted by Nancy Ragen, July 23, 2006.

[Editor's Note: Naomi Ragen's "Notes I" can be read below.]

1. Over a million Israeli children are spending their summer vacation listening to rockets falling, hearing horrifying sirens, watching their fathers put on their uniforms to go to the front, and experiencing the dispersion of their families, as fathers remain to care for farms and businesses while mothers and children go South. No one mentions this in all the " growing "concern about the humanitarian crisis" that the war has created. Pretty one-sided coverage. A call-in children's program on Israeli tv featuring a child psychologist answered their questions. Meshi from Safad, who was afraid of the sirens and the falling rockets, was told to breathe deeply during an attack. In between, she was advised to call her friends, to make a joke contest with her Mom, to color or paint. Meital from Beersheva, whose father has left for the front and who was in tears, was advised by a girl her age -also on the program, the daughter of a career army officer -- not to watch the news, to find games she enjoyed, to try to find someone in the neighborhood who needed help - a new immigrant, an elderly person, a child new to the neighborhood.

2. A big demonstration of the lunatic left took place in Tel Aviv. In a revealing column in Ynet, distinguished Israeli novelist Yoram Kaniuk, who has been identified with the Left, and who once said: "The more Israel orients itself according to Judaism and its fundamental variant, the more irrational is its policy, i.e., the more dangerous a threat it poses to its neighbors," got an invitation to join. He declined. This is what he wrote in YNET: "About what are they demonstrating? That Israel doesn't want to agree to her annihilation? That she doesn't want have Kassams landing in Ashkelon and Sderot, Nahariya and Haifa? Is there any city in the world that would be willing to sit quietly while being bombed, looking for excuses to understand the enemy and support him? Some say I've become a right winger. It isn't true. What's wrong with them? Anyone who isn't in favor of the destruction of the State of Israel is a right-winger? This is a holy war of Islam against the infidel West....

My, my. A new wind is certainly blowing. During the demonstration, two women, a left and right-winger politically, dared to hold up a sign calling the demonstators traitors, and saying "More power to the IDF.' They were manhandled and the flag they carried was ripped. Gotta love these "peace-lovers." "The Arab M.K.'s were the ones inciting the violence," the brave women told reporters. We are not holding our breath for arrests to be made.

3. Thousands of residents of Northern Israel went home after the Sabbath, saying they couldn't take being guests anymore.

4. For the first time, sirens sounded in Zichron Yaakov and Benyamina, but nothing happened.

5.Thousands of Israelis are volunteering to help. The following organizations are using volunteers.Ruach Tova 1 700 505 202, Latat, 1 700 504033. Abandoned animals in the north are being cared for by anatr@letlive.org.il and Hav-Hav, who are arranging for foster homes until things settle down.

6. Since the war broke out, 2,200 rockets have been fired at Northern Israel into populated urban areas.


Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist and journalist who lives in Jerusalem. She can be contacted at www.naomiragen.com, where you can subscribe to her newsletter.

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Posted by Steven Plaut, July 23, 2006.

1. Yes, anti-Zionism is a form of anti-Semitism!
"Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism: The Link"
By Diana Muir

Ms. Muir is the author of Reflections in Bullough.s Pond: Economy and Ecosystem in New England. The working title of her current project is: What Good is a Nation; A Clear-Eyed Look at Nations and Nationalism.

This week, the Spanish Foreign Minister felt compelled to defend Prime Minister Zapatero from charges of anti-Semitism.

Zapatero had donned the black-checked keffiyeh that is the symbol of Palestinian determination to destroy the Jewish State and criticized Israel for using "abusive force that does not protect innocent human beings."[1]

It was all too familiar.

On any given day one can find some eminent European -- a university professor, high-ranking churchman, a parliamentarian -- gravely explaining to reporters that harsh and disproportionate criticism of Israel is not anti-Semitic.

And their protestations sound plausible. After all, this is not your grandfather's anti-Semitism. Israel's highly-educated critics do not refuse to dine in restaurants that serve Jews, use epithets like "kike," or believe that Jews control the international financial markets and are more likely than others to engage in shady business practices.

At least that is what I assumed until someone did the study.

Two Connecticut professors got curious about the constant denials that extremely harsh critics of Israel were anti-Semitic. Edward H. Kaplan, the William N. and Marie A. Beach Professor of Management Sciences, and Charles A. Small, Director of Urban Studies, Southern Connecticut State University, decided to examine the issue in formal way. Their paper, "Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts Anti-Semitism in Europe," appears in the August issue of the Journal of Conflict Resolution.[2]

Kaplan and Small ask whether individuals expressing strong anti-Israel sentiments, such as the statement by Ted Honderich, Emeritus Grote Professor of the Philosophy of Mind and Logic at University College London, that "those Palestinians who have resorted to necessary killing have been right to try to free their people, and those who have killed themselves in the cause of their people have indeed sanctified themselves," are more likely than the general population to also support in such old-style anti-Semitic slurs as "Jews have too much power in our country today."

The correlation was almost perfect. In a survey of 5,000 Europeans in ten countries, people who believed that the Israeli soldiers "intentionally target Palestinian civilians," and that "Palestinian suicide bombers who target Israeli civilians" are justified, also believed that "Jews don't care what happens to anyone but their own kind," "Jews have a lot of irritating faults," and "Jews are more willing than others to use shady practices to get what they want."

The study's other interesting finding was that only a small fraction of Europeans believe any of these things. Anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism flourish among the few, but those few are over-represented in Europe's newspapers, its universities, and its left-wing political parties.

For Americans who do not read the European press, the level of raw anti-Semitism in European intellectual circles can be shocking.

A couple of years ago the French Ambassador at the Court of St. James, Daniel Bernard, told his companions at a London dinner party that Israel is a "shitty little country," "Why," he asked, "should the world be in danger of World War Three because of those people?"[3]

Those people? Moderates heard echoes of old-fashioned anti-Semitism. But the French Foreign Ministry stood behind their ambassador, calling assertions that Bernard's remarks were anti-Semitic "malevolent insinuations."[4]

The British press agreed. Columnist Deborah Orr defended Ambassador Bernard in the Independent. "Anti-Semitism is disliking all Jews, anywhere, and anti-Zionism is just disliking the existence of Israel and opposing those who support it," explained Orr, who holds "the honest view that in my experience Israel is shitty and little."[5]

Columnist Richard Woods summed up the attitude of the European intelligentsia when he wrote that Ambassador Bernard's remark was only "apparently anti-Semitic."[6]

Kaplan and Small have shown otherwise. When you read, for example, the opinion of Marc Gentilli, president of the French Red Cross, that the idea of allowing Israel to join the International Red Cross and use the Star of David on its ambulances is "disgusting,"[7] you can be pretty sure that he, along with Ambassador Bernard, Prime Minister Zapatero, President Chirac, and the rest of Europe's harsh critics of Israel, are very probably the kind of old-fashioned anti-Semites who just don't like Jews very much.

Post Script 7-23-06

After writing this essay, I learned that Zapatero may have had his own Daniel-Bernard-at-the-dinner-party moment. According to some reports, at a dinner party in late 2005, Zapatero loosed a tirade of extreme anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic rhetoric that ended with the phrase: "Es que a veces hasta se entiende que haya gente que puede justificar el holocausto" which means: "At times one can even understand that there might be people who could justify the Holocaust."

The conversation was reported on a Spanish talk-radio program.


1 "Spanish Minister Objects -- Says Criticism of Israel Not anti-Semitic" International Herald Tribune, July 20, 2006

2 Kaplan, Edward H. and Small, Charles A., "Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts Anti-Semitism in Europe," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol. 50 No. 4, August 2006, pp. 548-561 PDF

3 Tom Gross, "'A Shitty Little Country,' Prejudice and Abuse in Paris and London," National Review, Jan 10, 2002.

4 "'Anti-Semitic' French Envoy Under Fire," BBC Dec. 20, 2001

5 Deborah Orr, "I'm fed up being called an anti-Semite," Independent, December 21, 2001, cited in Tom Gross, "'A Shitty Little Country,' Prejudice and Abuse in Paris and London," National Review, Jan 10, 2002.

6 Richard Woods in "When silence speaks volumes," London Sunday Times, December 23, 2001, cited in Tom Gross, "'A Shitty Little Country,' Prejudice and Abuse in Paris and London," National Review, Jan 10, 2002.

7 Davis, Avi, "A Star-Crossed Resignation," Washington Times, Jan 2, 2002,

2. Israel's film producers are the closest thing the Hezbollah has to a fan club in Israel. Ynet has an expose of these critters here http://www.ynet.co.il/articles/0,7340,L-3279357,00.html alas in Hebrew only.

In an open letter, dozens of these "film producers" expressed their support for Lebanese and Palestinian terrorism against Jews. They wrote it just in time for an Arab film festival about to open in Paris.

The YNET piece has 1600 talkbacks at the moment and almost all of them are denouncing these moonbats as traitors, while some are proposing to do things to these traitors that could not be shown in a PG film.

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. His website address is http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com. Contact him at splaut@econ.haifa.ac.il

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Posted by Mordechai Ben-Menachem, July 23, 2006.
< p>Many of us recognize the importance of the Internet as the new battleground for Israel's image. It's time to do it better and coordinate our on-line efforts on behalf of Israel. An Israeli software company have developed a free, safe and useful tool for us - the Internet Megaphone.

Please go to www.giyus.org , download the Megaphone and you will receive daily updates with instant links to important internet polls, problematic articles that require a talk back, etc.

We need 100,000 Megaphone users to make a difference. So, please distribute this mail to all Israel's supporters. Do it now. For Israel.

Amir Gissin
Director Public Affairs (Hasbara)
Department Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

Mordechai Ben-Menachem is at Ben-Gurion University. He can be reached by email at quality@computer.org

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Posted by Naomi Ragen, July 23, 2006.


The following from an Israeli soldier was sent to me by his mother. I think it will give you a deeper understanding for what we in Israel are facing.

His name is Zachary Taylor and he is a soldier in the Nachal Haredi Unit.

Every blessing,

People jump to conclusions about the Israeli leadership and their strategies concerning Gaza and Lebanon. First of all, do not believe anything you read in a foreign newspaper or even half of the Israeli ones about this current situation. For example, just a few months ago an Arab Family in Gaza was killed on a beach. The Palestinians said the Israelis did the killing, as did international media. After research it was shown that in no way whatsovever was it an Israeli bomb that murdered that family, but a bomb that was left by HAMAS. However, by then, we lost the sympathies of world media, and Olmert apologized prematurely for something that Israel did not even do.

In Lebanon, you must understand that Hizbollah is not a "faction" it is part of the government. As we have seen lately as the puppet Lebonese government has come out and declared itself as defenseless aganist Hizbollah. However, that is not the case. Civilians in Beirut are handing out cakes and cookies as a celebration of the 8 dead Israeli soldiers and the two kidnapped ones.

What I have learned in three months of being at checkpoints is something I call the middle eastern personality which is common in both Arabs and middle easterners. People who visit Israel have experienced it here too. It is the attitude that "I gotta get for me what I can at the expense of almost everyone else." The expression in Hebrew is to "work" someone. At the checkpoints people come and cry or claim they are sick and need to go to the hospital, or have important meetings, all in an attempt to get us to let them pass quickly into Israel. Most of the cases are false, and just the way to "work" or "hustle" the soldiers at the checkpoint.

Most of this is witnessed by the Women in Black, who for some reason, believe these stories and only take the position of the Arabs, never that the soldiers are trying to protect the citizens of Israel from potential terrorists. So, the Arab citizens play up these stories to "work" the hearts and minds of the "human rights" activists and the media. These people do not learn through discussion or compromise because of Middle Eastern culture.

Look at the history now in every Arab country about their ability to compromise where it be honor killing, jihad terrorism, constant civil war, pillaging and rape and all the other cultural riches of the Arab world.

It is not within their mentality which has been nurtured thought history to compromise civilly. (This does not in any way reflect on all Muslims or Arabs) However, it is the typical behavior you witness in the Arab marketplaces in Egypt and Israel If you have been to these marketplaces, then you will understand what I am talking about.

Israel is a westernized and Jewish society which is all about discussion, analysis, and compromise Just look at the Talmud! What Israel is coming to realize now because of recent events and "compromises" such as leaving Gaza (while Israel reaps the rewards of daily punishment by missiles hitting several major cities such as Ashkelon and Sderot. Our Jewish naivete is that everyone is nice and perfect and can be dealt with through diplomacy. This is not true. Our enemies learn one way and the one and only way is through the language of war and the language of the sword. We did not set it up that way, they have.

And now, going into Lebanon and destroying all of Hizbollah and their infrastructure and their supporters with a firm, unwavering hand is the only way. We were in Southern Lebanon for 20 years and there was "peace in the North" only when we "compromised" and pulled out. Our soldiers are getting kidnapped and missiles now fall on Haifa.

Now you have to understand the Arab guerilla tactics, both Palestinian and Lebanese. They never fight in a battle field like a normal army. They retreat to civilian villages and cities and hide their until they poke their nose out of some window and shoot some anti tank or aircraft missile. So for defense, and I say DEFENSE forces, to succeed they must battle them even if they are in civilian territory. Again, We did not decide that, they did. So when civilians are killed unintentionally it is because THEY decided that it should be that way.

The world is full of naive bleeding hearts that will bash Israel for doing what it has been FORCED to do. They forget the fact that when soldier go into an Arab town for the sole purpose of finding a group of terrorists, the "civilians" are suddenly not so civil. They have guns, they throw Molotov cocktails, and rocks, big large cement blocks at soldiers. That is what we experience everyday in Gaza, the West Bank and Lebanon. We are fighting a guerilla and civilian army at ALL times. Suicide bombers are not part of an army they are civilians. There has never been a war fought like this in the history of humankind. But the "lefties" and even some on the right and the people who are not even connected and oblivious, including the international community think they have the right to tell Israel how to act, how to respond!

Do you know why so many soldiers die in the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon? Not because the enemy's army is better, they are not even close to the IDF. We have better equipment, more equipment, better training, so how is it that soldiers are kidnapped and killed? That's a good question. It is because the left and the international community is keeping such a close look, and bias toward Israel's defense tactics, that are hands are tied in defending ourselves properly. We take so many dangerous steps in order to protect civilians, that in return, we are killed and kidnapped.

Did you know that at the Lebanon Border for the last ten years, because of "International" pressure, that if you see 500 Hizbollah terrorists with AK47's and rocket launchers and missiles coming up to the actual border fence, 50 feet from the Israel soldiers, 50 feet from Israel's soil, that the IDF cannot fire unless they fire first! They can aim, set up shop 50 feet from you, but until they fire and shoot at you, the Israeli soldiers cannot defend themselves. Is that logical? No, it is insane.

The only reason why so many Israeli's both civilian and military are dying is explicitly the fault of the International Leftist agenda. The Left likes to see the minority win, even if it is Hamas and Hezbollah. We can only defend ourselves the way of the sword. Do not let anyone tell you anything differently. As I and the other soldiers and Israeli citizens have personal stakes in the matter, and as a supporter of the Jewish homeland, you do too.

Am Yisrael Chai!

Zachary Rowen Taylor 20 years old.
(Zacharia Ben Abraham)
Nachal Haredi Unit,
Beit Shean, July 16, 2006

Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist and journalist who lives in Jerusalem. She can be contacted at www.naomiragen.com, where you can subscribe to her newsletter.

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Posted by Walid Phares, July 22, 2006.

When Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, secretary general of Hezbollah held his press conference to declare his new victory over his enemy, Israel, he was triggering -- probably without knowing -- a new era in the history of Lebanon and the region. "We will continue in faithfulness to our line,: he declared, in legitimizing his cross border attack on an Israeli patrol, killing soldiers and kidnapping two. But the real "fidelity" Nasrallah was referring to wasn't to his captured men in Israeli jails, but to the regimes decision-makers in Tehran and Damascus. The "operation of July" came as a tipping point in a larger conflict, which superseded Hezbollah's detainee, the Shebaa farms, borders skirmishes and Israeli tactical responses. Beyond and above the events of that day, Hezbollah was triggering the first Iranian war on Lebanon's soil: A Syrian-supported offensive, even at the height of the Assad II regime. Bringing fire and smoke to the Lebanese-Israeli borders, and week before to the Gaza-Israel demarcation lines, is not simply two local disputes, one over unilateral Israeli withdrawal in Gaza and the other over real estate on the western slopes of Mount Hermon. Nasrallah (as well as his counterpart of Hamas) has calculated perfectly how to conduct a hit and run with the Israelis ordered by regional regime who have miscalculated their strategies. Pressured by the new regional realities and world concerns about nuclear threats and Terrorism, Iran and Syria wanted to throw their allies into the greatest uncertainties of survival.

But as Israel's Air Force began to pound Nasrallah's organization and Lebanon's transportation and communications infrastructure, and the media reported the war in progress with its horrific images, world opinion and decision-centers commenced to swing in all directions, seeking a name to the War and a projection of its ending, with great difficulties. Attempts are still ongoing to frame it from the most simplistic to the most conspiratorial: Lebanon is a beautiful country, it doesn't deserve violence and victimization, says the less informed. Indeed such lamentation should have been expressed since 1975, when this country was thrown to the lions. Between the PLO attacks since the beginning of the War, the Syrian occupation as of June 1976, the Israeli invasion of 1982 and the Iranian penetration of the 1980s, in addition to the civil war between all communities, more than 180,000 people were massacred and killed, with very little compassion under the Cold War and despite its end in 1990. While most militias disarmed in 1991, only one camp dodged that duty: Iranian-backed Syrian-protected Hezbollah and its allies. Co-ruling the country with Syria's security services, the militia presented itself as a "resistance" for a whole decade, building its networks, and consolidating power inside the country while claiming liberation against Israel's occupation of the south. The "Khumeinist resistance" endorsed the Syrian "occupation" of Lebanon and never struggled to free its compatriots in Damascus' jails. In May 2000 it achieved victory over Israel and its local allies, by occupying the so-called "security zone" in southern Lebanon after the latter being evacuated by the Israeli Government. Since then, Hezbollah reached its golden age: Control of about 70 km of international borders with the "Zionist entity," warranting hundreds of millions of dollars and other military support from Iran's Pasdarans; but also appropriation of enormous Government assets and resources under the auspices of Syrian control.

Between 2000 and 2005, Hezbollah increased its influence in Lebanese politics, becoming the dominant force, and remaining the principal ally of Syrian occupation. In this half decade, Tehran supplied the organization with weapons capable of reaching remote areas inside Israel. In those years as well, Hezbollah extended and grew its cells around the world including in South America, North America, West Africa and Western Europe. But the surge to high power, both in Lebanon and worldwide began to face challenges as of September 11, 2001. (http://counterterrorismblog.org/2006/07/

From when the American public mobilized against Terrorism in general to the first US-led intervention in Afghanistan, Tehran's leaders got extremely nervous about the changes hitting their neighborhood. Any democracy anywhere around them is a bad omen. When the Taliban regime was removed from Kabul in 2001, Tehran's Khumenists witnessed the rise of women in the electoral process and within the Afghani Government. Iranian leaders understood the future implications at home. When Saddam's regime was removed from Baghdad, Khamenei's elite wasn't unhappy with the removal, but with the multi party process that followed, even though they succeeded in inserting their influence in it. And when UNSCR 1559 was voted calling on Syria's withdrawal from Lebanon and Hizbollah's disarming, both Tehran and Damascus felt the heat pressuring their joint influence on the Eastern Mediterranean. The Syrian Baathist reaction to the new era was quick with the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri on February 14, 2005. Assad paid a dear price for this fast drawing and shooting against his opponents in Lebanon. In March of that year, and despite an attempt by Hezbollah to shore up popular support to the Syrian President inside Lebanon, one million and a half citizens marched in the street of Beirut, shattering the myth of both Syrian "brotherly" occupation and Hizbollah's untouched position in the country. With the political weakening of its allied organization by the public and the pulling out of Damascus' regular troops from Lebanon, Iran's regime mobilized for the counter regional attack. Hezbollah readied for its role in the general Jihadi offensive.

The Jihadi Syro-Iranian offensive started simultaneously in early 2005, with the Hariri assassination in Lebanon and the selecting of Mahmoud Ahmedinijad as head of the Islamic Republic in Tehran. In Lebanon and as the pro-Syrian Government collapsed, new elections were held and an anti-Syria majority was established, Hezbollah executed a sophisticated one year plan in preparation for the war launched in July 2006. It began with Nasrallah imposing on the Seniora Government a strange offer: taking three members of the Party into his cabinet, while Hezbollah maintains a strategic relation with Syria's regime. That success brought other moves forward. For six months, political leaders and journalists of the Cedars Revolution were assassinated with car bombs: Samir Qassir, George Hawi and Gebran Tueni. This sufficed to convince the anti-Syrian politicians that any serious obstruction of the Iranian-Syrian axis and opposition to Hezbollah will be "punished." The terror treatment seemed to have worked, as the Government was forced to abandon the implementation of UNSCR 1559 and have its components sit down with Hezbollah to "discuss" the future of its weapons. In short, it took Nasrallah and his allies less than a year to contain and weaken the Cedars Revolution and the Government it has produced. Twelve months passed after Syria's withdrawal from the country, and yet the Lebanese army was not allowed by Hezbollah's veto power inside the Seniora cabinet to deploy along the borders or even inside the sensitive area of south Lebanon. Strategically, Hezbollah absorbed the consequences of the Syrian withdrawal, penetrated the Government and along with pro-Syrian politicians created further divisions within Lebanon's religious communities, including within Sunni, Druze and Christian political establishments.

During 2006, several factors pushed Iran and Syria to press their allies in Lebanon and in Palestine for havoc. The nuclear crisis with Tehran was the principal factor for convincing the Mullahs that a major crumbling of the region's new democracies and peace processes is vital to deflect the crisis away from Tehran. In fact the international determination to remove the Iranian nuclear threat was breaking Ahmedinijad's ambitions for increasing international power. The several elections in Iraq, despite terrorism, indicated the rise of the political process in that country, with future impact on Iran itself. Syria's isolation as a result of the UN investigation in the Hariri assassination further convinced the Assad regime that inflaming the Gaza and the Israeli-Lebanese borders is the recipe to overshadow the UN report. Hamas also had developed interest in the clash with the "Zionist enemy," as the financial credibility of their newly formed Government in the Palestinian areas was sinking down and a civil war with Fatah looming on the horizon. And finally Hezbollah: the militia-turned party and still listed as a Terrorist organization on the US list of terrorist group, used extreme patience since 2000 in building its hyper-arsenal across the country, infiltrated the Army and avoided major escalation against Israel. But on Bastille Day Sayyed Nasrallah ended the previous era of preparedness: Now is the time for a qualitative Jihad, he seemed to imply.

In addition to the regional injunctions to strike Israel in order to focus the international heat on the Arab Israeli conflict, Hezbollah has also included a number of "Lebanese" factors in its decision to flare up the borders with its enemy. Back in March 2005, the leaders of the Iranian-backed organization saw in disbelief the enormous masses marching against Syria, and by ripple effect, against Hezbollah. Not only the largest democracy demonstration in the history of the Middle East, but also a multiethnic and multi-religious one: Christians, Druze, Sunnis and even some Shiites broke the taboo of Hezbollah's "sacred" character in Lebanon. Second nightmare was with the actual withdrawal of the Syrian army from the country, opening the path for the implementation of the second item of the UNSCR 1559, i.e., disarming the fundamentalist militia. The third nightmare came when this anti-Syrian coalition brought a majority in Parliament during the May-June 2005 legislative elections in Lebanon. The threat to Hezbollah was not the formation of a cabinet opposing Syrian influence in as much as it was a signal that the people of Lebanon wasn't endorsing the "resistance" story, or put it simply, wasn't buying the party's story period. The Cedars Revolution was the worse development the Khumeinist movement had to absorb since its inception. The sight of a million young men and women in colorful outfits marching in downtown Beirut was the beginning of a new era: liberal democracy, freedom and rejection of the dark ideology of Nasrallah. Hence, it became a must to eliminate that revolution at any price.

In a few months, a number of leading politicians and journalists were savagely murdered by the pro-Syrian camp: Syrian intelligence, Hezbollah and other groups were suspected as being behind the assassination campaign. In parallel, Hezbollah and its allies outmaneuvered the parliamentary majority, which was supposed to form an anti-Baathist Government, bring down the pro-Syrian President Emile Lahoud and remove the pro-Syrian speaker of the House, Nabih Berri. A magic hand convinced the so-called politicians of the March 14 movement, that none of these measures is feasible. Hence Syria maintained its power in Lebanon, while U.S and French Presidents were singing the praise of the liberation of Lebanon. Furthermore, and in a suicidal move the Lebanese cabinet, headed by Fouad Seniora invited Hezbollah to join the Government, before the latter disarm. By the summer of last year, the Cedars Revolution was bleeding seriously. Not only entrenched in the legal Government of Lebanon, but Hezbollah succeeded in a penetration of the Christian community, the hardcore of the anti-Syrian resistance, by enlisting the former commander of the Lebanese Army who performed an about face after 10 years in exile, where he claimed opposition to Syria. Michel Aoun signed an agreement of "understanding" with Hassan Nasrallah during the spring of 2006. The "revolution" was beheaded and Hezbollah was waiting for the right time to operate its come back into the center of Lebanese politics, while executing the instructions of Tehran and Damascus.

By early July 2006, Hezbollah's preparations for the bloody return to the top were fulfilled. The organization had already accomplished its Lebanese tasks:

1) Elimination (direct or in conjunction with Syrian intelligence or Syrian Social Nationalists) of visible symbols of anti-Syrian leadership: Tueni, Qassir and Hawi, and attempts against others such as May Chidiac, as an intimidation lesson to all others.

2) Paralysis of PM Seniora's cabinet from the inside and in cooperation with President Lahoud networks on the outside.

3) Paralysis of the parliament in collaboration with speaker Berri and the Aoun bloc.

4) Dragging the political forces in the country in the so-called national dialogue on the weapons of Hezbollah, a major waste of time and marginalization of the 1559 stipulation

5) Intimidation of the Lebanese army command.

6) Attempts to divide the Lebanese Diaspora by implanting agents linked to the axis.

7) Reactivation of the pro-Syrian and Jihadist networks in Lebanon and within the Palestinian camps.

8) Distribution of weapons among allied militias

9) Finally and most importantly, completing the final steps in the deployment of a system of rockets and long range artillery batteries aimed at Israel.

It is based on these domestic achievements in Lebanon and on strategic injunctions by its regional sponsors that Hezbollah decided to trigger its awaited Armageddon. What was the Hezbollah's initial plan? The pro-Iranian militia had constructed a theory of invincibility based on the rationalization of a string of former successes against the United States and France in the 1980s, against Israel and the ex-South Lebanon Army in the 1990s, and its intimidation of the Cedars Revolution in 2005. In short, Nasrallah's team was convinced of the following: A spectacular operation against Israeli military would:

1. Bring back the "struggle with Israel" to the forefront of Lebanese politics, thus cornering the Lebanese Government into capitulation on the Hariri and the disarmament matters.

2. Expect a harsh Israeli retaliation, good enough to attract world condemnation, but not strong enough to change realities in Lebanon.

3. The operation, dubbed "al-Waad al sadeq" (Faithful Promise) would signal the beginning of a series of skirmishes with Israel and a generalized assault on the Seniora cabinet and the Cedars Revolution, to be accused on treason and collusion with the Zionists.

4. With the crumbling of the Lebanese Government under the strikes by Hizbollah-Lahoud-Aoun, the pro-Syrian President would dismiss the Seniora cabinet, and in cahoots with pro-Syrian Berri, would disband the Parliament. A massive campaign of assassinations, arrests and exile would target the March 14 movement, followed by Terror-backed legislative elections, brining back a pro-Syrian Hizbollahi assembly and a radical Government.

5. The "putsch" would reestablish a Pro-Syrian-Iranian regime in Lebanon, and reconstruct a third wing to the Tehran-Damascus axis, reanimating the Arab Israeli conflict, rejuvenating the Syrian dominance, isolating Jordan, reaching out to Hamas, crumbling Iraq, and unleashing Iran's nuclear programs unchecked. The domino effects of Hezbollah's "Waad al sadeq" are far from being even imagined by Western and Arab policy planners.

Nasrallah seemed to be in control of his strategy when he appeared in his press conference of victory. His back was safe since he has terrorized the Cedars Revolution's movement, enlisted Aoun's support (breaking Christian community unity), and pushed Sunni and Druze breakaways to challenge Jumblat and Hariri (the son). To his south, he was applauding Haniya's Hamas "cabinet" for having already engaged the Israelis. To his east, Syria was mobilizing and waiting. In Iran, the "masters" were extending their strategic umbrella; and in Iraq, the Terror sapping of sectarian relations was on. All the brothers in Khumeini Jihadism were awaiting Hezbollah to break the chain of events from the Galilee. Nasrallah was at the forefront of a plan aiming at wrecking the rising democracy and the fledgling stability of the region. The stakes were really high for the "axis." But Hassan Nasrallah's master plan failed. First the Lebanese Government, smelling the odors of conspiracy was quick to distance itself from the operation. "The Government was not informed by it nor does it endorse it," stated the Seniora release. Second, Israel's volte-face surprised Hezbollah and their allies. Why would the Olmert Government, declare a full war on an organization that classical armies cannot take out, thought the Tehran planners. Then came, the Arab position: Arabia, Egypt and Jordan, followed discretely by others didn't extend their full support to the move. They certainly criticized Israel to the fullest of rhetoric, but didn't praise the "Hizb." On the international level, the Terror group "that-provide-services" didn't fare better. The United States firmly extended its bipartisan support to UNSCR 1559; France and the rest of Europe stated the same -- with their continental language -- Russia wouldn't side with Nasrallah against the world, and China has other priorities on its plate. Only Iran threatened to wage wars in the rescue of its most western army. Nasrallah fell into his own trap but decided to come up with a contingency plan.

Not so different from Plan A, the objectives of Plan B have been readjusted. If Israel bombards Hezbollah's infrastructure to the ground, Iranian oil will rebuild it. If Israel invades by land, it will find itself against a more aggressive Hezbollah than the one of the 1990s. Besides, Hezbollah will attempt nevertheless to go after the Seniora Government anyway. Calling on the "reserves," Hezbollah enlisted President Lahoud and his son in law Defense Minister Elias Murr to drag the Lebanese Army in the War against Israel's forces. And in collaboration with Aounist cadres (while the majority of his partisans are still stunned by the events), Hezbollah has unleashed an international campaign against the "inhumane aggression." If things go well, Nasrallah expect Plan B to become Plan A, and a land advance by Israel would unleash a total offensive against the Government of Lebanon by pro-Iranian and Syrian forces. If Israel moves north to create a safe area against Rockets, Hezbollah would move north to control the rest of Lebanon. The Syrian-Iranian axis will refuse UNSCR 1559, reject international initiatives for disarming the militias, and will make its stand in Lebanon, even if the Switzerland of the Middle East is to be reduced to rubbles. Assad wants to save his regime in Beirut, and Ahmedinijad wants to shield his bomb in the Bekaa: Alea Jacta Est, the dice are rolling.

Hezbollah's plan for the Lebanese Army is to drag it to a fight with Israel, as a way to destroy it. For the past 16 years Syria and Hezbollah have penetrated the Lebanese Army and installed their followers at various positions. For example, the command of the southern command, the officers in charge of the southern suburb of Beirut, the Murabb'a al amni (security zone for Nasrallah) and many offices in the second bureau are in the hands of Shiite officers linked to Hezbollah. Syria's allies including the Hezb and Amal can count on 20% influence within the institution. The commander in chief, General Michel Sleiman is neutral, with possibilities of shifts to either side. The head of the military intelligence, a Christian, follows Lahoud orders. The power map inside the Army keeps changing, but at the core of this institution, most officers are pro-Lebanese, close to the West. If Hezbollah pushes the regular troop into battle against Israel, the Army may split.

The United Nations is bound by a resolution it cannot but implement: UNSCR 1559. Having been among those who worked on introducing it in 2004, I have followed up till very recently the international efforts in this regards. There is a solid consensus that the resolution has to be implemented; it is inescapable. The question is who would implement it? Reality is that the Lebanese Government and its armed forces are too weak in front of the Hezbollah-Baath-Ahmedinijad axis. So if a regional bloc is obstructing a UN resolution, the international community should provide the balance of power. Hence, the US and France, along with the European Union, the moderate Arab states with the consent of the Security Council must provide the tools for the Lebanese Government to spread its sovereignty over its national soil, and the support for the Cedars Revolution to revive itself. The options are very limited: Either Hezbollah will dominate the Lebanese Republic, or the latter will disarm Hezbollah. Anything in between would be a waste of time. If Israel stops its operations short of an international intervention, Hezbollah will win the war. If Israel moves forward inside Lebanon after Hezbollah, an international intervention is inevitable. The days, weeks and months ahead will tell.

Meanwhile Hezbollah and its allies both in the region and in the West are and will be waging the mother of all propaganda wars. The task assigned to the propagandists is to stop military operations so that Hezbollah survives and fail international interventions so that the Lebanese Government collapses. A war of images, photos, mudding, internet, and media will explode in all directions. Operatives helping Hezbollah, including many with Christian names, will be waging an indiscriminate propaganda offensive against Lebanese, Arab, Western and obviously Israeli figures to spread confusion and psychological collapse in the international community. Objective: Obstruct the implementation of UNSCR 1559, trash the March 14 movement, criticize the Arab Government, and incite for Jihadi violence.

Hezbollah waged an Iranian War with Syrian backing. It knew how to start it, but it won't know how it will end. The forces unleashed in this conflict have been unpredictable including Israel, Lebanon's politics, the Arab Governments, and the international community. Hezbollah and its regional allies have spoken of "surprises" to come. In fact the latter are pretty much predictable: more rockets on and suicide attacks in Israel, coup d'Etat in Lebanon, and obviously international terrorism, including in the West. But "surprises" could also happen to Hezbollah. The Waad al sadeq operation may not be the only miscalculation by Secretary Hassan Nasrallah. The future of Hezbollah's war is as uncertain as the fate of the organization.

Dr Walid Phares is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, a visiting Fellow with the Foundation for European Democracy, the author of Future Jihad (English) and of books on Lebanon and Iran. He was one of the advisors to UN Security Council missions in the introduction of UNSCR 1559 in 2004.

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Posted by David Martin, July 22, 2006.

I have little to say with what goes on in the world and little right to say it.

I believe that the G-d of Abraham will fight and destroy before Israel.

I pray that all in Israel are kept safe and well. And the G-d's promise to curse those who curse Israel is remembered. Even unto those in the USA who seek you harm. For they are Liberals and of the race of Kenite. Know that there are those of the house of Joseph in the US that pray for you. May G-d keep you.

Contact David Martin at grandreal@sbcglobal.net

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Posted by Lawrence Uniglicht, July 22, 2006.

Movers and shakers of civil nations don't get it. Indeed, our one home in the universe has entered its second recorded millennium confronted by a budding world war between rational secularism and irrational blind faith. Technological advances in weaponry have made this nascent war potentially more perilous than all preceding wars. Surely World War III, if fought in earnest, between secular civil enclaves and Islamic jihad junkies, could wreck hard rain nuclear havoc over the entire planet, casting the human species into the darkest of ages. That is why prescient leaders must forthwith nip the emerging catastrophe in the bud; obliterate the root of this potential Armageddon, before its winding tentacles strengthen, attempting to strangle civil secular life out of sane humanity.

No emotionally stable person salivates for war, yet the die has been cast. Prescient civilized nations must, however, get it right, focusing on the hellacious heart and insidious soul of their unleashed declared enemy. America broke a jury-rigged balance, within the most convoluted region of this planet, when it toppled Sadist Hussein's Sunni secular tyrannical dictatorship, allowing Persian Shiite fundamentalists to begin their unchecked malignant metastasis, transmitting dire warnings through the frayed nerves of now afraid Sunni tribal leaders that had heretofore dominated the muddled but more stable Middle East. Predictably however, the Muslim Arab street screams obscenities at U.S. supported Israeli Jews now attempting to emasculate the unleashed Shiite Iran supported Hizbullah and Hamas terrorists, intent on annihilating Israel; predictably however, much of the non-Muslim non-Arab world screams "disproportionate response" at those Jews in survival mode, these (perhaps) anti-Semitic asses stupidly ignoring the fact Islamic terrorists intentionally ooze their own cowardly bodies and deadly missiles behind brethren "human shield" citizens, including women and children, in order to achieve such worldwide sympathy when Israelis attack. Ironically, yet also predictably, aforementioned threatened Sunni tribal leaders secretly root for Israel in this Kafkaesque scenario.

Let us be crystal clear. Intolerant fundamentalist Islamic regimes such as Iran and partner of convenience Syria as well as similarly inclined non-state entities such as Hizbullah, Hamas, and related groups are the enemies of sane secular nations. It is surely tragic innocent Lebanese civilians as well as innocent Arabs in Gaza are exploited by Hizbullah and Hamas respectively, portraying Israel as the bogeyman. It is also tragic that worldwide observers refuse to recognize this ploy, chastise Israel, and refuse to comprehend adherents of intolerant Islam, obsessed with jihad, must be subdued. Not recognizing and forthwith aggressively dealing with such an enemy already having declared a jihadist World War III on the perceived infidel is worse than foolhardy. Such a dereliction of duty will increase the misery quotient for subsequent civil generations, who might justifiably describe their appeasing parents as the "worst generation".

Lawrence Uniglicht is a career civil servant, working for the Social Security Administration. He advocates for the State of Israel with an American perspective. He writes, "Advocating for the disrespected underdog has been my passion, no doubt Israel falls into that category." Contact him by email at luniglicht@snip.net

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Posted by David Meir-Levi, July 22, 2006.

This letter, from an American-Christian, is his, most informative, observations of European media!

See who bitches about Israel and who is "helping" her to be so "popular"!

Friends, can I ask you a [silly] question: If you still do, why do you watch, thus support, CNN? This is from Don Morris (gsdmorris@hotmail.com). It's called, "Maybe it is just me," and it arrived yesterday.

Greetings from Hungary,

Hoping this finds you all well and enjoying summer. Interesting how distance impacts one's thoughts. For example, all we have to view, in English, is World CNN-I admit to watching it for long periods of time. I even started taking some behavioral data regarding stories, just to see if my perception was equal to the reality I thought I was viewing. I cannot speak for America or its media representation of the war in Lebanon-I can address World CNN.

The story below says quit succinctly what I have attempted to say in previous pieces I wrote. I offer this before you read the story. Media does play a tremendous role in policy design and implementation -this is a story unto itself. Suffice it to say that how one chooses to report, chooses topics to report and how one delivers the report matters. World CNN is defiantly skewing its presentation away from Israel.

For the last 3 days since I started taking data, the following has been replicated every 30-minute news cycle. The lead story is the flight of Lebanese from Lebanon, the tragic stories of individuals, the impending humanitarian crisis in Lebanon and then, they have a 45-second ... here is what is happening in northern Israel... If this were not so serious it would be rather humorous.

CNN interviews individuals and when they ask, "how difficult it was to get out," the interviewee says, "No, the government actually did everything OK, I would like to have gotten out sooner but 50,000 people want to leave and this will take time." Then the CNN reporter is at a lost for words and struggles to find some other angle about how horrible it must be; then, after the interview they summarize and always, I mean always, say that the person had experienced horror, pain, etc, this when the interview itself said quite the opposite.

CNN is asking for photos and personal departure stories,in other words, they have chosen to spend a great deal of time, every 30-minutes to place blame and to direct the story away from other important stories' dimensions. Just now CNN said, "Hezzbollah only killed 15, many more casualties in Lebanon." Talking about news slanting with no context provided -this is precisely what I mean and I must tell you I am provoked.

I am not asking that the media demonstrates equality in pain between Lebanon and Israel -- both sides are tragically being hurt -- this what happens in a war. It seems to me that so many of us have had the privilege of living rather peaceful and pleasant lives, thus have little, or no perspective how life can be and is in other parts of the world. Then we impose our values upon this arena and wonder why others act in a manner inconsistent with our standard of behavior. What I am asking from the media is fairness, actual reporting rather than opinion development and examination from multiple perspectives.

Below is a story that says it better than I.

"Disproportionate News"
by Daniel Johnson
July 20, 2006

Israel is winning the war on the ground. When the theocrats of Iran let slip their dogs of war in Lebanon, they did not anticipate the speed and precision with which the IDF would strike back. Israel has done to Hezbollah in a matter of days what the rest of the world had failed to do in as many years. As well as defending itself against an existential threat, Israel has also struck a powerful blow for the West in the global war on Islamist terror.

The war of the airwaves, however, is not going Israel's way. According to the global media, Israel is the aggressor against Lebanon, just as it is against Gaza. No matter that the U.N. and the international community did nothing to force Iran and Syria to halt their build-up of an offensive arsenal on Israel's northern border, no matter how many missiles Hezbollah fires at Israeli cities, the story doesn't change.

Everything is blamed on Israel. The plight of Western tourists caught up in the conflict and desperate to be evacuated; the suffering of Lebanese civilians whose country has been held hostage and is now reaping the whirlwind; even the Israelis bombarded by Hezbollah missiles -- all these innocents are treated as direct or indirect victims of Israel's "disproportionate" response.

That's the story. It doesn't matter that Hezbollah, like Hamas, deliberately instigated the crisis, by firing missiles at and abducting soldiers from the sovereign territory of Israel. It doesn't matter that even most Arab states are conspicuous by their absence from the lineup of Hezbollah's cheerleaders. It doesn't matter that Israel, far from using its military superiority recklessly, has sought to target only facilities that pose a deadly threat to its own citizens. It doesn't matter that Hezbollah, again like Hamas, surrounds its missile-launching sites, command and control centers and other infrastructure with civilians, using them as human shields. None of this signifies anything, because the story is that Israel has acted "disproportionately."

The same journalists who have consistently obscured the unique predicament in which Israel has found itself since its foundation -- as the only nation permanently threatened with annihilation by its neighbors -- now conceal the genocidal motivation of Iran and its proxies, Hamas and Hezbollah. The indiscriminate missile attacks by Iranian-trained terrorists on Israeli civilians in Haifa and other towns or kibbutzim are the opening salvo of what Islamists hope will be a second Holocaust.

Like the gas chambers, the very existence of these missiles has been denied. Robert Fisk, the London Independent correspondent who sets the tone for much reporting of the Middle East, has consistently refused to believe in Hezbollah's ballistic capability, for example. The warheads of these Iranian-made rockets are often packed with ball-bearings, designed to cause maximum carnage. Yet it is Israel that, in attempting to eliminate this threat, is said to be acting "disproportionately."

The BBC distorts every event to depict Israel as the aggressor. Its correspondent in Beirut, Kim Ghattas, is herself Lebanese and makes no attempt to be neutral in her reporting. On Tuesday, BBC Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen spoke of Israel's "war crimes" and warned of a "worst-case scenario" if Israel is not forced to halt its attacks on Hezbollah: Lebanon, he said, could be taken over by "jihadis" -- as if that were not already the case. But the facts must be made to fit the story.

Other actors in the drama are judged exclusively on whether they adhere to this storyline. Thus France escapes criticism, because Jacques Chirac was quick to denounce Israel's "totally disproportionate" reaction to terrorist attack -- even though last January the same Mr. Chirac had threatened a nuclear strike against "states who would use terrorist means against us." Israel also earns opprobrium from Vladimir Putin -- Russia is a state that is still living up to its reputation as an evil empire. Who, exactly, is calling whom disproportionate?

Then there is the United Nations. Tuesday, deputy secretary-general Mark Malloch Brown told the BBC that he condemned both Hezbollah and Israel for "targeting civilians." Hezbollah makes no secret of its aim of killing as many Jews as possible, but to tar the IDF with the same brush is outrageous -- but not unexpected fom the U.N., which has signally failed to implement its own Resolution 1559 by leaving Hezbollah a free hand in Lebanon.

Unlike these hypocrites, Tony Blair is treated with derision. The voyeuristic media had eyes only for his trivial conversation with President Bush, which was accidentally recorded at the G-8 in St. Petersburg, rather than his statement in Parliament about the summit, when he blamed Iran and Syria, "who are at war not against Israel's actions but against its existence." The same Iranian weapons now being used against Israel, he observed, have been turned against coalition troops in Iraq, but the idea that Israel's war is also the West's war does not fit the story, so the BBC and most of the press did not bother to report his statement.

Indeed, the BBC does not take seriously any Western statesman who calls the true culprits by name. President Bush's unusually direct criticism of Syria this week was simply dismissed by the BBC Washington correspondent Matt Frei with the assertion that there was no evidence to support Mr. Bush, adding gratuitously: "He is playing a very dangerous game." Chancellor Merkel, who has quietly swung Germany behind the Anglo-American position, is merely ignored. Leaders who do not think Israel's action is "disproportionate" are simply airbrushed out of the story.

Israel can defeat its enemies in the field, but those behind its own lines are more elusive -- and maybe more dangerous. The few Israelis who are interviewed by the BBC are usually critics of the Israeli government such as Yossi Beilin -- even though they are a tiny minority at this "unique moment of unity," in Natan Sharansky's words, with almost unprecedented unanimity of support for Ehud Olmert.

Equally unrepresentative of diaspora Jews, most of whom support Israeli policy in Gaza and Lebanon, the London Times recently carried a full-page advertisement protesting "the collective punishment of the people of Gaza." Placed by a lobby group calling itself Jews for Justice for Palestinians, the signatories included the Nobel literature laureate, Harold Pinter, the film director, Mike Leigh, the actresses, Janet Suzman and Miriam Margolyes, the historian, Avi Shlaim, and 300 others. The spectacle of Jews denouncing Israel for defending itself lends a spurious legitimacy to the expression of those subliminal anti-Semitic reflexes that are ubiquitous in Europe.

In the Middle East, of course, such reflexes are anything but subliminal. Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, described Israel this week as a "cancerous tumour," while President Ahmadinejad compared Israel to Nazi Germany. He has threatened to unleash an Islamic "explosion" which would "burn all those who created [Israel] over the past 60 years." Curiously, nobody at the BBC thought to call these gentlemen "disproportionate."

David Meir-Levi is an American-born Israeli, currently living in Palo Alto. His expertise is in Near Eastern studies and the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. He is Director of Peace and Education at Israel Peace Initiative (www.ipi-usa.org). Contact him at david_meirlevi@hotmail.com

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Posted by Naomi Ragen, July 22, 2006.


I want to write you about the little things, the things that make Israel a place to love and fight for; things you will never hear on Certainly Not News, or the Crescent News Network (some people call it CNN) or in the Guardian, whose reporters are no doubt on the Saudi payroll, or USA Today, or the Washington Post, all of whom are pro-terror. In this conflict anybody who is anti-Israel is pro-terror or for for appeasement of terror. It is so interesting to seeing people being flushed out into the open who hold these views.

I heard Geraldo Rivera, that jerk, who all of us remember during the Intifada as he defended the terrorists, preface his latest anti-Israel remarks on Fox by calling himself "a Zionist." Puh-lease. Maybe your young, Jewish wife might be impressed but the rest of us know better. Concerning the despicable article by Richard Cohen (Hunker Down with History) in last week's Washington Post saying Israel was a "mistake," and therefore a good thing for Hezbollah to wipe her off the map, I have this to say: Mr. Cohen, if Israel is a mistake than discuss it with God, because He is the one who made it. The only mistake I could see God making is allowing your mother's pregnancy to go full term....

Below, a collection of some things that you might not have heard.

1. At the entrance to Jerusalem, right near the stop were soldiers going to the front get their rides, someone has taken a large sheet and hand painted a sign which says: "Dear Soldier: "Thank you for helping to keep us safe. God bless you and keep you!" As we pass it in our cars, it brings tears to our eyes.

2. My neighbor, a busy lawyer with a beautiful home, has taken in a family of six strangers from Kiryat Shmona, sharing her home with them.

3. Our news reports that the IDF in Lebanon has found large stockpiles of weapons in mosques, and in private homes.

4. Our news reports that Hezbollah is keeping villagers from leaving their homes at gunpoint, forcing them to act as human shields to guard their weapons.

5. Hezbollah only targets civilians. Nasrallah murdered two little Arab boys in Nazareth, then called them "shahids."

6. Hundreds of rockets have fallen today alone on Israel's northern towns. Not one person was killed, and only two were seriously injured. The Hilleli family of Safad were sitting in their living room watching the news when a rocket fell into the room. Only the mother we seriously hurt. In Nahariyah, Avi Oved was sitting at his computer checking where the rockets were falling, when he heard the siren and decided to stand in his stairwell. When he returned to his computer he found a rocket had landed in his chair.

The word "miracle" is used in news reports again, and again, and again.

7. We are fighting because Hezbollah and Hamas want a prisoner release. Who are the people they want to set free? Samir Kuntar, who landed on the beaches of Nahariyah, walked into an apartment house, took a father and his four year old daughter out. Then, as the father watched, they smashed the child's head in with a rock before shooting him. They want to release the men who set off bombs in the cafeteria of Hebrew University, killing students and teachers. They want to release men who used the head of an infant for target practice. They want to make them a heroes welcome in Lebanon. These are the "political prisoners" you are hearing about on your news programs, making it sound like tit for tat. Your kidnapped Israeli soldier who was on his side of the border for our homocidal maniac and baby killer. It is to prevent this that our sons and daughters in the IDF now risk their lives; that the people of Israel endure the nightmare of bombardment. Only one thing stands between what happened to us sixty years ago, and what is happening to the Jewish people today: the IDF.

8. Our synagogue is collecting toys and food to send North.

9. Israel has already built an Israeli prison for Hezbollah. Twenty prisoners were taken today alone. Many more were killed.

10. Omar Bakri, the radical Muslim cleric who had his British citizenship revoked after the London bombings and fled the country wound up in Lebanon.Now, he wants to be evacuated by the ...British! Trying to board the refugee repatriation ship, he asked for a one month visa. British authorities him down. The preacher, who called for Muslims to rise up against Westerners, was frightened he would be bombed by the Israelis.

More soon.

Every blessing,


Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist and journalist who lives in Jerusalem. She can be contacted at www.naomiragen.com, where you can subscribe to her newsletter.

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Posted by Kern Heller, July 22, 2006.

How remarkable our people are, rising up in great numbers in solidarity with Israel's government execution of the ongoing war with Hizbullah. Federations and Jewish organizations all over the country are organizing and holding rallies in support of Israel's actions. Justifiably so.

It was also stunning to note the absence of such fervor during the implementation of the Road Map and the first round of disengagements which as you know called for the two state solution. During that disengagement, the first anniversary of which is rapidly approaching, the lives of 10,000 good Jews were effectively ruined. Why weren't these Jewish organizations and federations in opposition to such policies of perfidy to the degree they are in favor of Olmert's policies regarding this current war?

What are these organizations afraid of? Being told by Arye Mekel, the Counsel General in New York, to "shut up"? It makes no sense to me. None at all. What difference should it make if the terror is coming from without or from within? Both have deep repercussions for good Jews. Afraid to vehemently protest government treachery perhaps coupled with shared contempt for those good Jews who built wonderful productive lives for themselves out of sand dunes in the land given to them by Hashem?

If the people both in the States and in Israel agree to band together and fight terror from within, terror which is not manifested by Katyusha rockets but by massive civil and human rights abuses, cracking of skulls of people who just want to stay in their homes and the failure to incorporate the Torah into daily governing of the State, then we collectively will defeat the next round of "disengagements" called today by the word, "convergence"and this next round would result in between 7 and 10 times worse tragedy than the first.

Olmert stated that despite the current war against Hizbullah, his plans are to still expel fellow Jews from Judea and Samaria. That is terror from within...and that must be halted as soon as possible. I hope that these Jewish organizations and Federations and synagogues finally come to their senses and join in the opposition of such a disgrace.

Ken Heller is a pro-Israel activist and a member of the Philadelphia Chapter of Americans For A Safe Israel. He can be reached at kayjayphilly@yahoo.com

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Posted by Salah Choudhury, July 22, 2006.
When Jerusalem is continuing its battle against the mega terrorist Hizbullah, unfortunately, most of the Muslim press are running extremely negative propaganda against Israel. Bangladeshi press is also not any exception to this bad trend. This is an opinion editorial from the Today, I am sending (1) this clipping from Dhaka's English press -- although the Bangla press is even worst -- followed by (2) an Op-Ed piece by me.

1. The Daily Star
Editorial, July 22, 2006
"Lebanon bleeds"

When will international community act?

We cannot but be alarmed at the escalation of aggression in Lebanon with Israel apparently planning for a full-scale invasion. When already numerous lives have been lost and property damaged extensively following bombing by the Israeli warplanes on 'suspected Hezbollah hideouts', a full-scale war across the entire country would only mean unleashing killing machines to level everything that pertains to humanity. It is with deep concern we note that while Lebanese authorities have appealed to the international community as well as the UN for restraint and help, their Israeli counterparts continue to talk tough giving hints at going all out against the beleaguered nation on one plea or the other.

We feel there is enough to read between the lines of the rhetoric of the Israeli defence minister Amir Peretz when he says, 'We have no intention of conquering Lebanon, but if we will have to act in order to complete our tasks and reach our victory we will do it without thinking twice'. War analysts also predict further escalation of the situation once the evacuation of western civilians from Lebanon is completed. Such blatant threats and ruthless military aggression with the intent of destroying a sovereign country negate all that stands for international rules and conventions, right to independence and democracy.

The much-feared humanitarian disaster has already started inside Lebanon with a large number of people having been displaced. There is no knowing how many more will join the trek to refugee camps against the backdrop of dwindling food and medical supplies since bombing began nine days back. The Lebanese prime minister expressed his surprise before a group of foreign ambassadors at the poor response of the international community while his country was being torn to shreds. Truly enough, though every country speaks against warfare, none has come forward so far to initiate a ceasefire, nor the UN has yet taken any concrete step.

Peace and tranquillity in the entire Middle-East is of paramount importance for democracy to find roots there. The perennial suspicion in the minds of the people in the region about the motive of the West needs to be removed through building bridges and not by destroying them. The powerful Western nations should therefore exert pressure on Israel to stop the naked aggression in the name of self-defence.

2.  "Story of the three stooges"
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury

The world should feel extremely uncomfortable and angry at the notorious activities of three stooges of present day's world, who are trying to do everything to defend terrorism and Islamist militancy. One is Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad; others are Bangladeshi foreign minister Morshed Khan and Syrian President Bashar Al Assad.

In recent weeks, Israeli forces were compelled to launch offensives on Lebanon to crash several bases of mega terrorist organization Hizbullah, since this notorious group captured two Israeli soldiers. It is known to the world that Hizbullah continues to get support and patronization from Lebanon, Syria and Iran. These three countries have already turned into a direct enemy of humanity and obstacle to the theme of war on terror.

Meanwhile, for the first time, the entire Muslim world, including Saudi Arabia criticized Hizbullah's notoriety, while only two countries namely Iran and Syria as well one man, Bangladeshi foreign minister Morshed Khan passed bad comments on anti-Hizbullah offensives. Commenting on Hizbullah, a unnamed Saudi Government official said, "Viewing with deep concern the bloody, painful events currently taking place in Palestine and Lebanon, the Kingdom would like to clearly announce that a difference should be drawn between legitimate resistance and uncalculated adventures carried out by elements inside the state and those behind them without consultation with the legitimate authority in their State and without consultation or coordination with Arab countries, thus creating a gravely dangerous situation exposing all Arab countries and their achievement to destruction with those countries having no say. The Kingdom views that it is time that these elements alone bear the full responsibility of these irresponsible acts and should alone shoulder the burden of ending the crisis they have created. ... The Kingdom will continually seek security and stability in the region, exerting every possible effort to protect the Arab Nation from Israeli oppression and transgression."

Saudi Arabia had earlier accused the Shiite Hezbollah group, without naming it, for what it said was its 'uncalculated adventures' that threaten the 'destruction of the achievements' of other Arab countries without consulting them.

United Arab Emirates leading newspaper al-Ittihad published a commentary of Yusuf Ibrahim, where he wrote, "We have seen this film before and accordingly we can expect its end. It is not important how many times a film is shown as long as the end is the same. It means destruction, misery and evacuation of homes for the Lebanese and Palestinians. ... In fact, we will be actually irresponsible if we do not stop and think for a moment. Over more than 15 years, Hassan Nasrallah, leader of Hezbollah, has kept saying that he is keen on consulting Damascus and Tehran, but this makes one wonder about the reasons that made the leader of Hezbollah refrain from consulting the government of his own country, Lebanon."

Lebanese politician Walid Jumblatt said, "The war is no longer Lebanon's ... it is an Iranian war. ... Iran is telling the United States: You want to fight me in the Gulf and destroy my nuclear programme? I will hit you at home, in Israel."

Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and Jordanian King Abdullah II in a Joint Statement said, "The region is being dragged along by an adventurism that does not serve the interests of Arab affairs. ... The necessity for all the parties in the region is to act responsibly and not to move towards an escalation aimed at taking the region to a dangerous situation and confrontations that will leave the countries and their peoples bearing the consequences."

Ahmed Al-Jarallah, editor of Kuwait Arab Times said, "People of Arab countries, especially the Lebanese and Palestinians, have been held hostage for a long time in the name of 'resisting Israel.' ... While the people of Palestine and Lebanon are paying the price of this bloody conflict, the main players, who caused this conflict, are living in peace and asking for more oil from Arab countries to support the facade of resisting Israel... This war was inevitable as the Lebanese government couldn't bring Hezbollah within its authority and make it work for the interests of Lebanon. Similarly leader of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas has been unable to rein in the Hamas Movement. Unfortunately we must admit that in such a war the only way to get rid of 'these irregular phenomena' is what Israel is doing. The operations of Israel in Gaza and Lebanon are in the interest of people of Arab countries and the international community."

Bangladeshi foreign minister condemned the killing of civilians in Israeli attacks on Lebanon and urged the international community to rein in "state terrorism" and "aggression" by Israel against Lebanese and Palestinian people.

"We are deeply concerned over the current situation in the Middle East. We feel the world community should come forward to restrain the state terrorism of Israeli aggression on Lebanon and the people of Palestine," the foreign minister, M Morshed Khan, said when addressing members of the Overseas Correspondents Association of Bangladesh in Dhaka.

Morshed Khan also termed the recent attacks in Lebanon and Palestine by the Israeli soldiers an act of fundamentalism and religious terrorism.

He was critical of the double standard maintained by certain Western powers, which he said were patronizing the aggression.

"Attacking Lebanon and killing innocent civilians... I think, it is a heinous act," Morshed Khan said.

Without naming the United States, he castigated its role in the aggression saying the "guardian of democracy" should give up the strategy of maintaining double standard.

The White House administration has reportedly given Israel a tacit green signal to take a week it needs to neutralize Hezbollah.

The United Nations was drawing up a plan for an international force to try to restore clam in Lebanon, but the US president, George W Bush, who says Israel has the right to self defense, insisted that Hezbollah had to be reined in before there could be peace in the region.

The Europeans fear mounting civilian casualties will play into the hands of militants and weaken Lebanon's democratically elected government.

Referring to the Middle East situation, Morshed Khan said Bangladesh fully supports the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to have a state of their own with Jerusalem as its capital.

"Bangladesh maintains its principled stance for a comprehensive solution of the Palestinian question in accordance with the relevant UN resolutions, the Arab Peace Plan and the Road Map."

He said Bangladesh remains committed to the cause of unity, peace and progress of the Muslim fraternity. "Our support for the cause of Palestine and for a peaceful and durable resolution of the Middle East problem including Arab sovereignty over Holy Jerusalem is an abiding commitment."

Meanwhile, according to international press reports, Egypt persuaded Israel against a planned land attack on the Lebanese capital of Beirut following Hizbullah's abduction of two Israeli soldiers earlier this week, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said Sunday. The Egyptian leader also disclosed an Iranian offer to negotiate a settlement with Hizbullah as part of Arab initiatives to resolve the crisis, but called Tehran's bid "a trap."

Egypt was keen not to let the Israelis into Beirut," Mubarak told reporters Sunday after talks with the president of the United Arab Emirates, Sheik Khalifa bin Zayid al-Nuhayyan. "If we hadn't stepped in, Beirut would have been destroyed," Mubarak said.

Egyptian officials have been talking to the Israelis in a bid to find a diplomatic solution to the latest regional military confrontation, the Egyptian president said. "We are talking to them more than once a day," he said. "We told them that attacking civilians and civil infrastructure is wrong, because the Lebanese people are helpless."

Like regional heavyweight Saudi Arabia, Egypt has criticized Hizbullah for starting the latest Mideast crisis. Mubarak said he was also in contact with Syrian officials and that Tehran was interested in participating in Arab mediation efforts.

"They (the Iranians) want to attend the Arab foreign ministers meeting and form a joint committee that would have included Hizbullah and Hamas," he said. "Egypt realized that that was a trap."

Moderate Arab nations, such as Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and oil-rich countries in the Gulf have expressed fear that Iran is using its Lebanese Shiite allies to expand its regional influence. Meanwhile, Iran's top leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei praised Hizbullah Sunday and said it would not give up its weapons.

"Thanks to the power of Hizbullah, the Lebanese resistance has disturbed the dream of the Zionists," Khamenei said in a speech broadcast on state television. "The US President says Hizbullah must be disarmed. It's clear that (the US) and Zionists want this, but it won't happen," He said.

On Saturday, Israel said that 100 Iranian troops from the elite Revolutionary Guards were in Lebanon, and that they helped Hizbullah fire a sophisticated radar-guided missile at an Israeli warship blockading the Lebanese coast late Friday. Israel said the rocket was made in China and upgraded in Iran, and was a radar-guided C-802 missile. Iran on Sunday denied the Israeli claims.

Political analysts say that very surprisingly, Bangladesh foreign minister has echoed the voice of Ahmadinejad abd Bashar Al-Assad, which certainly will put his country into a very doubtful position. US assistant secretary of state Richard Boucher is expected to arrive in Dhaka on August 2, and possibly Khan's comments will also come into discussion table, as United States in one of the biggest development partners for Bangladesh as well a committed force in war on terror. Some of the political analysts are predicting a very dangerous fate for Dhaka waiting following the new strategy of the foreign minister. Dhaka will possibly see a good response from Iran and Syrian while will experience harsh criticism from the Western world as well many of the moderate Muslim nations.

Commenting on Morshed Khan's statement, a former diplomat in Dhaka said, he knows nothing of diplomacy or world politics. He behaves like a clown. Bangladesh should have carefully monitored the entire situation in the Middle East as well the past track record of terrorism of Hizbullah, before terming Israeli actions as "state terrorism". This will not only annoy the global powers but will also put Bangladesh into the worst ever situation, which will also hamper its business and exports in the near future, he said.

It is known to the world, notorious groups like Hizbullah, Hamas and Al-Qaeda are continuing murder of innocent people in the name of holy war. American writer Paul Shehaan narrates this situation in his own words saying,

"When historians narrate the beginnings of the third global war, a war already under way with more than 200,000 killed, they may choose the moment on October 12, 2000, when a small fishing skiff sailed up to an American destroyer, the USS Cole, at anchor off Aden harbour in Yemen.

"As the skiff approached, the two Arabs on board smiled and waved at the sailors on deck. Then the two men stood to attention.

"In the next instant, the Cole was gutted by an enormous bomb. It liquefied the bombers, killed or wounded 56 sailors, and disabled a heavily armoured state-of-the-art warship. Other suicide bombs had exploded before, and many more since, but the attack on the Cole was the first frontal assault on the US military by al-Qaeda, and the emergence of al-Qaeda globalised and modernised the cause of jihad.

"War and murder have been carried out in the name of Allah in Thailand, Bali, Sumatra, the Philippines, Nigeria, Algeria, Somalia, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Gaza, the West Bank, Egypt, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Pakistan, India, Bosnia, Albania, Kenya, Tanzania, France, the Netherlands, Britain, Spain, Denmark, Russia, the United States and Sudan, where mass murder and mass rape have been the tools of cultural war.

"What makes this global war different from the First and Second World Wars is that there are tens of thousands of combatants who actually want to die, and in the process kill as many non-believers as possible. As the bombs, missiles and rockets have been exploding in Lebanon, Israel and Gaza, medievalists who are key drivers in this cultural struggle have been ecstatic. You can hear it in the rhetoric of Hezbollah's spiritual leader, Hassan Nasrallah, and Iran's President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

"Most disturbingly, jihad is being driven by three separate, distinct and often competing strands of Islam: Sunni, financed by the oil-powered Wahabist fundamentalists of Saudi Arabia, and dominated by the ideology of al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden; Shiite, an extension of the theocracy of Iran, and highly active in Iraq, Lebanon, Afghanistan and the Palestinian territories; and Pakistani Muslim nationalism, the wellspring of jihad in Kashmir, support for the Taliban, and terrorist attacks in India and Britain, with its large Pakistani emigre community.

"What these distinct mutations of Islam have in common is an appetite for war and murder and sexual oppression. It is no coincidence that the governments in all three of these wellsprings of jihad have weapons of mass destruction. Pakistan has the first "Islamic bomb", acquired through a campaign of theft, stealth and illegality. Saudi Arabia and Iran have a different kind of bomb - oil in immense and strategic quantities.

Iran, the prototype of the modern Islamic theocracy (which also wants the nuclear bomb to match and trump Israel's nuclear option), is stronger today than it was a week ago. It already wields disproportionate power in the Middle East through its proxies helping to tie down 150,000 US troops in Iraq, which is 60 per cent Shiite. Now, thanks to its proxies in Lebanon, Israel has been goaded into an attack on a democratic neighbour.

At the weekend, the foreign ministers from 18 Arab League nations held an emergency meeting in Cairo after which the Secretary-General of the League, Amr Moussa, declared that the Middle East peace process was "dead".

Lebanon's Prime Minister, Fouad Siniora, said that Israel's "war machine" had turned his country into a "disaster zone".

Another victory for the provocateurs of Islamic fundamentalism. Every time chaos has engulfed the Middle East, militant Islam has emerged with greater power. Creating chaos is thus the modus operandi of jihadists.

Lebanon's newly reborn democracy and stability, after 20 years of civil war, has been the greatest act of national reconstruction in the Arab world, an enormous achievement. The Government in Beirut relies on a detente between former enemies, Christians, Sunnis, Shias and Druze, some 18 separate factions.

No one in this fragile democracy is willing or able to disarm the Hezbollah militia dominant in the Shiite south of Lebanon. Far more important has been the multibillion-dollar rebuilding of the economy.

The United Nations may have passed Resolution 1559 calling for the disarming of Lebanon's militias, but who in Lebanon would be willing to go into that hornet's nest? Who would be willing to plunge the nation into another civil war? By blaming the Lebanese Government for Hezbollah's actions, Israel has demanded the impossible from its neighbour.

Hezbollah has been thriving on chaos since it began in 1982 in response to Israel's invasion. When it launched its first major suicide attack in the region on April 18, 1983, killing 63 people at the US embassy in Beirut, it created the template for the borderless war we are part of, whether we want to be or not.

The only glimmer of good news at the weekend was the criticism of Hezbollah by the governments of Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan. And to put the current mayhem in perspective, the Cold War was waged for more than 50 years between democratic capitalism and totalitarianism, with nuclear weapons massed on either side. It was not a cold war for the tens of millions of people who died in purges within China and the Soviet Union, and in wars or civil wars in Vietnam, Korea, Latin America and Africa.

The Cold War ended with no nuclear weapons being used. But compared with medievalists waging jihad, the communist powers of the Soviet Union and China were prudent, rational players. In today's global struggle, the objective evidence is overwhelming that where militant Islam goes, bloodshed follows. In a whole range of different settings, for many adherents of Islam the Koran is not a book of peace but a call to war.?

Look at this comment! Just because of nasty activities of some notorious groups, using the term of jihad to justify their evil deeds, Islam is now coming into challenge. Everyone knows, every religion including Islam promotes peace. But these bad elements in Hizbullah, Hamas or al-Qaeda are continuously using the good name of Islam for terrorism and murder of innocent people. Does Bangladeshi foreign minister understand this reality. Before he passed the remarks, he should have at least studied the past track record of terrorism of Palestinian Hamas, Lebanese Hizbullah or Al Qaeda. Crtitics say, Khan is a mere businessman, who made his fortune with blessings from several Japanese companies. But, diplomacy is something else. Here, you just can not utter a word without knowing the consequence. Although top most level of Bangladesh government remain silent on the Middle East issue, foreign minister Khan's remarks could place the country into serious jeopardy. Morshed Khan has no right to place Bangladesh into the queue of Iran or Syria and he should not let the international community take Bangladesh as another patron of terrorism.

The writer is a journalist, columnist, author, and editor of "Weekly Blitz" in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Email him at salahuddinshoaibchoudhury@yahoo.com

To Go To Top

Posted by Sandy Rosen-Hazen, July 21, 2006.

Have updated all of you from the 13th through the 18th of July, now sending this update, covering the 19th through the 21st of July, as per requests from so many of you very thoughtful people!!!! We appreciate your concern and your prayers!!!!

Some FYI (since many of you have asked):

As for the geography of Israel.....I've included LINKS to maps in several of my WAR Update e-mails and CNN is showing the maps every few minutes, 24 hours everyday.....however, FYI:

Safed is 10 miles from the Border;
Safed is 1-1/2 hours north of Tel Aviv;
Safed is 1-1/2 hours west of Amman, Jordan;
Safed is 1-1/2 hours south of Beirut, Lebanon;
Safed is 1-1/2 hours south-west of Damascas, Syria!!!!

You can see Safed in the aerial photos (being shown on International TV news, right now), of Avivim, which is on the Lebanese border, beause we are their neighbors!!!!

There is up-to-the minute news 24/7.....FOX, CNN, Sky, BBC, ABC, CBS, NBC & lots more, on TV!!!! Also, there's a 2-minute video EVERYday at: http://www.jerusalemonline.co.il/home.asp it comes live from Israel's Channel 2 TV!!!! Plus, you can go to the Haaretz &/or the Jerusalem Post Internet Web Sites!!!!

As always, my comments appear within many of the following articles, in my attempt to answer many of your questions!!!! They are in square brackets -- [ ].

Shabbat Shalom.....
Love always


[From Official Israeli Government Site: http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA]

US President Bush (July 18): "We were able to reach a very strong consensus that the world must confront the root causes of the current instability. And the root cause of that current instability is terrorism and terrorist attacks on a democratic country. Part of those terrorist attacks are inspired by nation states, like Syria and Iran. In order to be able to deal with this crisis, the world must deal with Hizbullah, with Syria and to continue to work to isolate Iran. This crisis started when Hizbullah captured two Israeli soldiers. They were unprovoked, and they then took hostages. Imagine how the United States would react if somebody provoked us with that kind of action.

[We all KNOW how they reacted, thank G-d, attacking Afghanistan and Iraq!!!!] And secondly, they started firing rockets. It's this provocation of Hizbullah that has created this crisis." [Kol HaKavod, Pres. Bush!!!!]


"The [U.S.] House of Representatives condemns Hamas and Hezbollah for engaging in unprovoked and reprehensible armed attacks against Israel on undisputed Israeli territory, for taking hostages, for killing Israeli soldiers, and for continuing to indiscriminately target Israeli civilian populations with their rockets and missiles." (July 20)

There are 2 versions of Bill H.Res.921 for the 109th Congress:

1. Condemning the recent attacks against the State of Israel, holding terrorists and their state-sponsors accountable for such attacks, supporting Israel's right to defend itself, and... (Introduced in House) [H.RES.921.IH]

2. Whereas on September 12, 2005, Israel completed its unilateral withdrawal from Gaza, demonstrating its willingness to make sacrifices for the sake of peace; (Engrossed as Agreed to or Passed by House) [H.RES.921.EH]

[EVERYthing you want to know about this war is summed up in a FAQ from the Israeli Government, at end of this newsletter.....]


"Boys will be boys" By R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr., a nationally syndicated columnist. Thursday, July 20, 2006; 5:26 p.m. EDT -- CNN Politics

WASHINGTON (CREATORS) -- To the grizzled and disheveled stalwarts of Hezbollah and Hamas, may I say you did it to yourselves. Kapow! As another Israeli bomb lands nearby, as a shell whizzes overhead, may I remind you that you are hunkering down either on Gaza or on Lebanese soil that was evacuated by the Israelis so that you could live in peace. And what did you donkeys do? You tunneled under the Israeli borders to infiltrate Israel and kill innocent civilians. You established an infrastructure of missiles to rain down destruction on Israeli cities that were at peace, providing security and prosperity for both Jews and Arabs. You captured Israeli soldiers in an unprovoked attack. Kapow! You are getting just what you deserve.

Moreover the terrorists of Hezbollah and Hamas have revealed to any sensible observer that they have no interest in peace with Israel or with the West, for that matter. Needless to say, they have no interest in a peaceful Gaza or Lebanon. The same bellicosity afflicts the allies of these terrorists in Syria and Iran. The brutes in these governments are pitiless and belligerent tyrants. Listening to their sophistries about their need for nuclear power or their desire for a peaceful world puts me in mind of all the irenic poetry of the late Herr Hitler back when things were good for him in the middle 1930s. It all ended badly -- for everyone. When in May 1940 Winston Churchill became prime minister, he thought himself a failure. He recognized that all his admonitions s against the Nazis in the previous decade had proved futile. Now only world war would bring peace.

The land from which Hezbollah has been firing missiles was supposed to be free of militias, according to United Nations Security Council Resolution 1559. The Taif Accords, by which the Lebanese civil war was ended, also called for disarming the militias and giving the Lebanese army control of its border. United Nations peacekeepers have been stationed there to see that these diplomatic measures were implemented. Obviously once again UN peacekeepers have failed. Though at least in southern Lebanon the peacekeepers have not raped and pillaged. Pacifying the region is obviously going to be left to the Israelis. I hope our government resupplies them as soon as they finish the business.

Yet that leaves a large question. What are the next measures to be taken to secure peace in the Middle East? Again the terrorists have foolishly tipped their hand. They have revealed with their missile attacks that the missiles they have access to are increasingly powerful. Now they are landing them on Haifa. Next they will be landing them on Tel Aviv. In time they will be able to hit anywhere in Israel. Israel is going to have to take action to see to it that no more missile attacks are possible and that Hezbollah's suppliers -- Syria and Iran -- stop arming them.

I would think this means that Israel for the short term is going to have to take control of the border regions of Lebanon and of Gaza from which it withdrew. Reportedly some 50 percent of Hezbollah's missile-launching capacity has been destroyed. Perhaps this is accurate, but only troops on the ground will be able to ensure that the terrorists do not return with their missiles. Yet even troops in Lebanon cannot deny Hezbollah's acquisition of ever more powerful weapons. That means its suppliers are going to have to be dealt with.

Diplomacy does not seem to work with the Syrians or with the Iranians. We have been dealing with the Iranians diplomatically on their nuclear capacity for months. They remain obdurate and dishonest, and now their clients have unleashed war against Israel. The only recourse might well be the recourse taken by Israel in June 1981 when Israeli aircraft destroyed Iraq's nuclear facilities. Many, even many conservatives, get very agitated by such suggestions. Well, allow me to remind them of President Ronald Reagan's reaction when his National Security Adviser informed him in the Oval Office of the Israeli bombing. They used bombers we had sold them, the adviser harrumphed. "Well," said the Old Cowboy, "boys will be boys." That, of course, is how Reagan expressed what is the oldest idea known to man: philosophical acceptance of the inevitable.


Interesting Times: Old and new courage: saul@jpost.com -- Jerusalem Post -- Jul. 20, 2006 13:00

Four extraordinary exploits stick out in Israel's short history: the Six Day War in June, 1967, the Entebbe hostage rescue on July 4, 1976, the destruction of Iraq's nuclear reactor at Osirak in 1981, and the airlift of thousands of Ethiopian Jews in Operation Solomon, in May, 1991.

These events demonstrated Israel's ability to act with almost unbelievable audacity and skill. They were met globally with admiration or consternation, but each captured the world's imagination and, perhaps most importantly, unified the Jewish people in pride.

To the same degree, these events were all terrible moral blows to those seeking Israel's destruction since they demonstrated our iron will to prevail.

These operations share some common characteristics: they were accomplished largely or completely from the air, and they were over in a few days. Each demonstrated the almost impossibly long reach of a tiny, embattled country. Each showed courage, decisiveness and the willingness to take calculated risks.

SOMETIMES it seemed that Israel had long ago lost the gumption necessary to repeat such feats. All happened before the [damned left wing] Oslo Accords and the subsequent debilitating morass of a "peace process" gone sour.

Yet twice in recent times Israel has taken dramatic action on the scale of those four extraordinary ones: Operation Defense Shield in 2002, and the operation going on in Gaza and, particularly, Lebanon today. These may not be as clean and dramatic as their more flamboyant predecessors. Arguably, however, they exhibit greater national courage and fortitude, and should contribute no less to the morale of the Jewish people and the dismay of our enemies.

Remember that Defensive Shield came at a time when suicide bombers were striking our cities at a furious rate and it seemed that nothing could be done about them. In just 10 days between March 21-31, 2002, 54 Israeli civilians were murdered in five terrorist attacks, four of them suicide bombings.

But something could be done, and Israel did it. IDF soldiers went into the dense warrens located in the centers of Palestinian cities where the terrorists had ensconced themselves in the midst of poor neighborhoods. Rather than bombing the concentrated areas where the terrorists were from the air, the IDF went in on the ground in order to minimize Palestinian civilian casualties.

Though this decision cost the lives of numerous Israeli soldiers we were accused of "massacring" Palestinians. The UN Security Council rushed to condemn Israel and, in effect, save the terrorists by ending the Israeli military operation.

FAST-FORWARD to today and the similar sense of hopelessness that prevailed in the face of Kassam missile attacks, and global indifference to them. Our enemies were playing the usual "no address" game in which the attacks came from groups with shifting names which Israel had to search out individually, while those calling the shots, be they in Ramallah, Gaza, Beirut, Damascus or Teheran, escaped responsibility.

Worse, in the case of Lebanon, our decision makers faced the fact that some 14,000 missiles were pointed at our cities, from Tel Aviv to the northern border, poised to strike if we dared to change the rules and defend ourselves.

Israel pretended that the rules had changed when we pulled out of Lebanon in 2000, and that we now had the right to hold Lebanon, Syria, and Iran responsible for any Hizbullah attack; but in practice it seemed that we were the ones who were deterred, by Hizbullah's arsenal, from "escalating" the situation.

When the cabinet decided, in the wake of a Hizbullah attack into Israel that killed four soldiers and captured two more, to attempt to destroy Hizbullah and hold the Lebanese government accountable, it knew that that fearsome array of missiles would be let loose. Yet it decided to go ahead, hoping that the people of Israel, including those whose lives would be endangered, turned upside down, and even lost in the ensuing missile attacks, would understand the necessity for drastic and definitive action.

They were right. Polls show that the vast majority of Israelis support the government's decision. In fact, they indicate slightly higher support for the operation, and for not ending it prematurely, in precisely the areas that are being bombarded. [YES, we do!!!!]

If there is a question, it is whether it is a mistake to hold Syria, which has heavily supplied Hizbullah and is greatly responsible for the refusal of the Lebanese government to disarm this group, largely immune. As historian Michael Oren writes in The New Republic: "If the Six Day War presents a paradigm of an unwanted war that might have been averted with an early, well-placed strike at Syria, then Israel's current strategy in Lebanon deserves to be rethought. If Syria escapes unscathed and Iran undeterred, Israel will remain insecure."

The thinking on the focus on Lebanon seems to be that the heavy price Lebanon is paying will give it a strong incentive to prevent Hizbullah from rebuilding and returning the status quo ante. But with Syria and Iran untouched, this is indeed a risky proposition.

We happen to be at a moment, however, when the West is itself gearing up to confront Iran - which may well explain why Hizbullah-Iran decided to attack Israel in the first place.

The near-miraculous turnabout in June 1967, when Israel went from being on the brink of destruction to total victory over multiple Arab armies, inspired Jews the world over - particularly Soviet Jews, who discovered their dormant identity and viewed Israel's victory as a blow to their oppressors.

Our refusal to be cowed by Hizbullah's missiles, and our attempt to destroy Iran's external terrorist arm, should inspire the international community to similar acts of courage.

In recent years, Israeli courage and decisiveness has, paradoxically, mainly been channelled into territorial withdrawal. Now we are displaying a more classic type of fearlessness, which, together with the newfangled version, is showing signs of greatly improving our military and diplomatic position.


[The Shimon Biton in this article, is Heidi's husband's cousin.....]

Moshav Avivim still stands determined during tensions: By Dan Izenberg -- Jerusalem Post -- July 20, 2006

Fifty-five-year-old Ya'acov Ivgi, decked out in a steel helmet, combat belt and M-16 rifle, did not seem perturbed by the fact that a mortar shell had recently exploded inside his moshav of Avivim and that soldiers stationed nearby were firing tank and artillery shells at Hizbullah forces less than one kilometer away.

While others huddled under the roof of the communal area, Ivgi stood out in the open, rushing to the sheltered area only when he heard the shriek of an incoming Katyusha.

Nevertheless, he maintained that Wednesday was Avivim's worst day so far in the current fighting with Hizbullah and one of the worst days in the history of the long-suffering community.

Earlier in the day, two IDF soldiers were killed and nine wounded in a clash with Hizbullah forces on the Lebanese side of the border. The forces had been sent in to destroy a Hizbullah outpost directly opposite the moshav. [On the border, 10 miles from Safed!!!!] The outpost was originally built by the IDF and abandoned intact after prime minister Ehud Barak ordered a hasty [VERY BIG mistake!!!!] withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000.

Ivgi is a member of the emergency squad that is on call 24 hours a day to guard against Hizbullah infiltrators and to make sure moshav residents enter their bomb shelters and safe rooms when there is an alert.

Four-hundred people live in Avivim. About half of them - including almost all of the women, children and elderly people with health problems - have been evacuated from the moshav, according to Shimon Biton, head of the Avivim residents' committee and a member of the emergency team. The able-bodied men have stayed behind to protect their homes and look after their poultry.

Biton is tough and determined. He lost his father in 1970, when Palestinian terrorists belonging to the Syrian-sponsored Saeka organization fired two bazooka shells at a school bus, killing 12 Avivim residents, most of them children, and wounding about 25.

"We ask the government to support the army and give it another month to do the job," said Biton. "We are prepared to sit in shelters all that time." [As are we ALL!!!!]

Nowadays, there are as many soldiers as farmers in Avivim. A few days earlier, soldiers prevented an infiltration of Hizbullah fighters presumably attempting to seize hostages from Avivim.

On Wednesday, Israeli troops fired tank and artillery shells at the well-entrenched Hizbullah fighters while they replied with mortar shells and Katyushas. During this exchange, a second mortar shell hit a structure within the moshav, causing no casualties but setting off a large fire.

Earlier in the morning, at Dovev - another long-suffering moshav 12 kilometers west of Avivim along the northern border - a group of about 20 elderly residents waited in a plaza outside the community buildings for a bus that was to take them away from all the explosions and tensions. About 90 percent of the moshav of 520 people have already left. As in Avivim, they too describe past week as the worst time in their history.

Although none of the houses have been hit so far, four Katyusha rockets landed just outside the perimeter of the moshav, including one that destroyed four fruit trees and another that fell 50 meters from a house.

Iranian-born Eliahu Kadusi has spent the last 40 years in Dovev. He fell in love with Galilee because it reminded him of the area along the Iraq-Iran border where he was born - the same hills, the same cold weather and snow. For these same reasons, Kadusi does not want to leave Dovev despite the dangers. "I like it here," he said.

It is not the first time the moshav has been evacuated. The farmers also had to leave during the 1982 Lebanese invasion and Operation Grapes of Wrath in 1996.

Moroccan-born Mima Peretz has lived in Dovev since 1953 but she too does not remember anything as bad as this. "This is no life," she said. "It has never been like this. I'm afraid to hang out my laundry or go to the grocery store."

Despite the fear of sudden death and the stress caused by ear-splitting explosions, 56-year-old Yoseph Waknin has decided to stay, at least for the time being. "I have to look after my chicken coop," he explained. "I have 1,700 chickens." Among other things, Waknin has to collect the eggs, and make sure the chickens have water and feed.

He and other farmers complain that the chickens have stopped giving their usual quota of eggs because they have been terrified by the loud noises. "Usually, I produce 10-11 wagon loads of eggs per month," he said. "This month, I'll be lucky if I have seven or eight."

But perhaps the biggest problem faced by all those remaining along the northern border is the lack of sleep. The residents are virtually sleepwalkers who live on almost no hours of sleep. "As soon as I put my head down on the pillow and fall asleep, an artillery gun goes off and I'm wide awake again," said Ivgi.


"Rockets fired at Rosh Pina, Har Meron area:" By Ahiya Raved -- YNet News -- July 20, 2006

Rockets land on kibbutzim in Har Meron area in Upper Galilee, no reports of injuries; at around 10 p.m. the siren goes off in Western Galilee region, short while later four rockets land in open fields near Rosh Pina [From my home in Safed, Mt. Meron is my neighbor to the left and Rosh Pinna is my neighbor to the right!!!!]

After a day of relative calm, with the firing of lone rockets at Carmiel, Tiberias, and other areas in the Galilee, sirens have gone off again at around 5:45 p.m. in the Upper Galilee.

Rockets fell near one of the kibbutzim in the Har Meron district in the Galilee. The rockets exploded in open territory and no injuries or damage were reported.

Shortly after 7 p.m. the IDF said Hizbullah fired four rocket barrages at open fields in the Upper Galilee; two barrages were fired toward Rosh Pina and the Har Meron area; no injuries or damage were reported. At 10 p.m. the siren went off in the Western Galilee region, and a short while later four rockets landed in open fields near Rosh Pina; no injuries or damage reported.

During the afternoon, at around 1 p.m., an air raid siren was heard in Haifa. No rocket attacks took place on populated areas however, and some rockets may have fallen on open territory. Some Haifa residents told Ynet they heard explosions in the city before the siren went off.

The areas of Nahariya, Akko, and all of the Western Galilee communities heard sirens, and residents were told to enter shelters. At 5:30 a.m. Haifa residents awoke to the sounds of sirens, but they were no rocket landings in the area.

Residents of the north are currently under instructions to remain in protected structures for the seventh day in a row. Until now rockets killed 15 civilians -- including two brothers killed Wednesday in Nazareth. Dozens more have been injured. 14 soldiers have been killed since Hizbullah's first attacks last Wednesday.


Israel: Hezbollah's military power halved: Hezbollah leader denies claim: "They are unable to harm us" CNN -- Thursday, July 20, 2006; Posted: 5:27 p.m. EDT

BEIRUT, Lebanon (CNN) -- Israeli special forces battled Hezbollah guerrillas Thursday during a second day of fierce ground fighting in war-ravaged southern Lebanon.

The Israel Defense Forces reported six new casualties among its soldiers, though it would not specify if any had been killed in Thursday's fighting. A tank and an armored bulldozer were hit by rocket-propelled grenades, the IDF said.

The Israeli military estimates that its air assault on Lebanon has destroyed about half of Hezbollah's military strength. It is using ground forces to target Hezbollah's remaining artillery, believed hidden in caves, tunnels and basements. The Israeli offensive is intended to wipe out the remaining capabilities of the Islamic militia, Israeli military officials have said. CNN cannot independently confirm Israel's estimation of Hezbollah's military strength.

Speaking in an interview Thursday on Al-Jazeera television, Hassan Nasrallah, leader of the militant group, said Israel's claims of eliminating half of Hezbollah's fighting capacity were untrue. (Watch as Nasrallah promises Hezbollah 'surprises' -- 1:17)

Hezbollah "stood fast and has absorbed the strike" against it he said. "They are unable up to this moment to do anything to harm us." The fighting began after Hezbollah guerillas captured two Israeli soldiers during a raid into northern Israel on July 12.

The Lebanese security forces said Thursday that 258 civilians have been killed and another 582 injured. But in a speech to diplomats in Beirut the day before, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora put the death toll higher -- at more than 300 -- and said the wounded numbered about 1,000. (Watch as hospitals in Lebanon are overwhelmed by wounded -- 2:23) Fourteen Israeli soldiers and 15 civilians have been killed, according to the IDF.

Violence on both sides of the border:

Although Israel believes "Hezbollah has been hurt considerably," the military operation "is not over yet," Israel's security minister said Thursday.

"We are aiming and focused at dismantling the capability of this organization, prohibiting it from attacking Israel again and changing the rules of the game in the region," Isaac Herzog said. (Watch what Israeli strikes have wrought -- 3:58) The operation will continue until that mission is complete, he said.

In anticipation of further strikes, the IDF has dropped leaflets written in Arabic to warn Lebanese civilians not to go near militants, at their own risk. (Watch what civilians under siege are doing to survive -- 2:10) "Do not sleep or stand with Hezbollah in the same place," the leaflets warned.

"We are calling on the Lebanese people and army to avoid giving aid -- direct or indirect -- to Hezbollah elements. Anyone who does so will expose themselves and their lives to danger."

Shortly after daybreak Thursday, a huge blast rocked southern Beirut. Lebanese television showed a large plume of smoke over the city skyline. Israeli airstrikes also hit three Hezbollah training camps and Hezbollah-run Al Manar television in eastern Lebanon, the IDF said Thursday. Hours earlier, dozens of warplanes dropped 23 tons of bombs on what Israel called a Hezbollah bunker, IDF sources said.

"We thought that the Hezbollah leadership was gathered there," Israeli Foreign Ministry official Yigal Palmor said. "We have no information as of this moment whether they were there or not or whether there were any casualties or not."

But the militant group said the bombs hit a mosque under construction and caused no casualties. Nasrallah's television interview came nearly a day after the strike.

Meanwhile, guerrillas fired Katyusha rockets on cities in northern Israel, including Tiberias and Carmiel, according to the IDF. There were no reports of injuries. (See a map of area)

Cease-fire chances [NO way, Jose.....we've only just begun!!!!]:

The Lebanese government says its citizens are taking the brunt of the damage, and is pleading for a halt in violence. Saying his country has been "torn to shreds," Prime Minister Fouad Siniora estimated that the Israeli onslaught has displaced as many as a half-million Lebanese. He called for an immediate cease-fire.

Lebanon's finance minister said Israel's bombing has reversed Lebanon's economic comeback. "Lebanon was expected to have at least 6 percent rate of growth, the economy was booming," Jiad Azour told CNN. "And in one week's time, we see all this destruction."

In an address to the U.N. Security Council on Thursday, Secretary- General Kofi Annan demanded "an immediate cessation of hostilities" to prevent further loss of life, allow for humanitarian relief and give diplomacy a chance.

While Israel "has a right to defend itself" against Hezbollah attacks on its cities and soldiers, "the excessive use of force is to be condemned," Annan said in an address to the U.N. Security Council. Annan also condemned Hezbollah for starting the crisis and for holding "an entire nation hostage."

Israel has rejected calls for a cease-fire until it can push Hezbollah back from its northern frontier and retrieve its captured soldiers. [Right on!!!!] The United States and Israel consider Hezbollah a terrorist organization. The group, which has claimed responsibility for terrorist acts, also operates an extensive network of social services in Lebanon, and its political wing holds seats in the Lebanese parliament.

Israeli forces spent more than two decades occupying parts of southern Lebanon after a 1978 invasion to set up a buffer against guerrilla attacks. The United Nations verified Israel's pullout in 2000.

In other developments:

Israel pounded the Maghazi refugee camp in central Gaza for a second day. Four Palestinians died in the fighting, three of them by airstrikes, Palestinian medical sources said. The IDF confirmed three of the deaths.

CNN's Paula Newton, Nic Robertson, Barbara Starr, Cal Perry, Aneesh Raman, Hala Gorani and Alessio Vinci contributed to this report.


Thousands of IDF troops operating in S. Lebanon: By Haaretz Staff and News Agencies -- 01:38 21/07/2006

Two IDF soldiers were killed and six others were wounded in heavy clashes with Hezbollah just inside south Lebanon, close to Moshav Avivim [neighbor of Safed], on Thursday afternoon.

Hezbollah fired mortar shells in the area in effort to disrupt the rescue of the wounded. The IDF believes that several Hezbollah guerillas were killed in the close-quarter confrontation.

Four soldiers were injured late Thursday night when two Apache helicopters collided in northern Israel, near Kiryat Shmona.

Major-General Benny Gantz, who serves as the head of the Ground Forces Command, said on Thursday that ground fighting in limited areas in Lebanon would continue despite the IDF's causalties.

Hezbollah bunkers are well-hidden and discernible only from a close distance, said Gantz. "The operation is challenging, difficult and complex. Unfortunately, there is the price of casualties, but the other side, unlike us, doesn't report their casualties," he added.

Thousands of Israeli troops are operating in south Lebanon where they are targetting Hezbollah positions. Among their activities, they are searching for tunnels dug by Hezbollah militants. According to the army, Hezbollah fighters have taken refuge inside these tunnels - often dug under homes in villages - along with their rockets, and that they occasionally emerge to fire one into Israel.

On Thursday morning, three IDF soldiers were wounded in two separate clashes with Hezbollah in the same area. Two of the soldiers were wounded, one moderately and the other lightly, when a rocket hit a tank.

A third soldier from a paratroop unit was seriously wounded in fighting with a Hezbollah cell. The soldier sustained head injuries and was taken to Rambam Hospital in Haifa.

The army said Thursday's clashes broke out not far from where Hezbollah killed two IDF troops and wounded nine others Wednesday. Four civilians were killed in an Israel Air Force strike on a car in the southern coastal city of Tyre. Earlier Thursday, IAF jets renewed air strikes on Beirut's southern suburbs, Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV reported.

Al-Manar's report of the attack on the Bir al-Abed neighborhood came after a relatively quiet night in Beirut, following the massive Wednesday evening attack by IAF jets on what the military believed was a bunker used by senior Hezbollah leaders, including Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah.

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties in Bir al-Abed.

Army chief tells troops fighting may last a long time:

Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Dan Halutz told IDF troops that the fighting in the north may go on for an extended period of time. In his first missive since the start of the recent conflict with Hezbollah, Halutz stated that, "We are responsible for defending our independence and the integrity of our country."

"The State of Israel is in the midst of fighting an extremist Islamic terrorist organization that denies our right to exist, and is operating under the auspices of Iran and Syria, which aim to threaten Israel's sovereignty.

The fighting was aggravated after provocations by Hezbollah and Hamas, which carried out terrorist attacks in Israeli territory, in which a number of IDF fighters were killed and Corporal Gilad Shalit and reservists Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev were abducted. We are responsible for defending our country's independence and sovereignty, and for the security of its citizens.

"The fighting in the north was added to the fighting in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, and may continue for an extended period of time. This is a test for us. Our moral and ideological strength will reflect on the country's citizens and will aid their ability to face the threat on the home front. The society's strength and the trust has in the IDF strengthens us and will continue to do so. We will do whatever it takes to maintain the state's security.

"The terrorist groups misread the map and misinterpreted the resolve of Israeli society and the IDF. The army is operating on the Lebanese front to destroy terrorist infrastructure & terrorist-supporting infrastructure. We hit and will hit Hezbollah strongholds in Lebanon, as well as the organization's rockets, while hitting Palestinian terror.

"You - the dedicated and determined soldiers and commanders - who remain true to the mission and operate according to the IDF spirit, will continue to serve as the source of strength for the IDF and the basis for our success. A strong IDF serves as a security network for our country's continued existence.

"I send my condolences to the families who paid the heavy price of losing a loved one, wish a speedy recovery to the wounded, and support the families of our abducted soldiers. We are trying to bring our boys home.

"IDF soldiers and commanders - we carry the flag of security and defend the borders of the state of Israel. Together we will continue to carry out our missions with diligence, wisdom and resolve."

Halutz warns Hezbollah wants war of attrition with Israel:

Halutz warned the security cabinet on Wednesday that Hezbollah wants to drag Israel into a war of attrition in Lebanon, whereas Israel wants "a short and forceful war."

His comments came as two Israeli children were killed by a rocket in Nazareth and two IDF soldiers were killed and nine wounded in clashes with Hezbollah gunmen in Lebanon.

"They realize that prolonged attrition causes internal pressure from Israeli citizens and international pressure, and think that those are our weak points," Halutz said, adding that Hezbollah wants the fighting to extend over a long period "so that we will capitulate."

The chief of staff said IDF operations are centering on south Lebanon. Among other things, the army is trying to cleanse the border zone of Hezbollah outposts and attack the villages from which Hezbollah is firing. When the IDF discovers that Hezbollah is firing rockets at Israel from a particular village, Halutz said, the army warns the residents to leave the village and then bombs it in an effort to damage Hezbollah's tactical operational capability.

The IDF has succeeded in damaging Hezbollah's ability to fire rockets on Israel, Halutz said. [Thus, although we are still getting hit, thank G-d, less and less rockets hit us each day!!!!]

"We damage, diminish, weaken and erode," he told the ministers. "Hezbollah's consciousness has already been seared, and they understood completely that Israel is reacting in a way that they never thought we would react." Halutz said that plans have already been laid for a ground incursion, but that the army is not implementing them at the moment.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said that the IDF has "as much time as you want to complete the mission."


Barrages resume Thursday afternoon By Jpost.Com Staff -- Jul. 20, 2006 11:43

Hizbullah resumed its attacks against northern Israel on Thursday afternoon as 8-10 rockets fired at northern Israel landed in the Galilee region. No injuries or damage were reported.

In total, about 40 rockets have been fired at Israel on Thursday. A total of 116 rockets were fired by Hizbullah at Israel on Wednesday. [As I said above.....thank G-d, less & less each day!!!!]

Earlier, a series of rocket attacks near Moshav Avivim on the Israeli-Lebanese border sent residents into bomb shelters.

Five rockets also landed in the Upper Galilee in a renewed rocket assault from Hizbullah cells in south Lebanon. Five rockets also landed in Safed and two Katyushas fell near Tiberias. No casualties or damage were reported in any of the attacks.

Residents of Nahariya and the Galilee north of the Acre-Amiad road were instructed Thursday morning to remain indoors, inside fortified rooms or bomb shelters. Earlier on Thursday morning, an alert siren sounded in Tiberias warning residents to remain in protected areas.

A warning siren in Haifa early Thursday appeared to be connected to rocket falls elsewhere, since there were no reports of rockets hitting the city. [They certainly got more than enough on Wednesday!!!!]


[This is disgusting, considering how well the Jews have always treated the Arabs of Nazareth, all of these years.....]

"Nazareth sheikh attacks Zionism:" By Matthew Wagner -- Jerusalem Post -- Jul. 20, 2006 16:30

One day after the tragic killing of two baby brothers in Nazareth, (See: www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1150886033419&pagename= JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull) a leading Suffi Sheikh from the same town, who has been heavily involved in interfaith dialogue for two decades, equated the dispossession of Palestinians from their land in 1948 with the Holocaust. Sheikh Abdel Salam Manasra, Secretary General of the High Suffi Council in the Holy Land, also equated Zionism with idolatry.

"Just as it says in the Bible that there were Jews who worshipped Ba'al [a type of ancient idolatry] so too there are Jews today who are Zionists," said Manasra. "You are not a Jew as you should be if you [support] Zionism," he added. "Zionism is a bad thing." Manasra rejected the idea that Israel was a Jewish state or a homeland for the Jews.

"After the Europeans brought a Holocaust on the Jews, you Jews came here and brought a Holocaust on us," said Manasra. "None of the Europeans responsible for the Holocaust paid the price. Instead, I paid the price because I lost my land."

Rabbi Dr. Ron Kronish, Director of the Inter Religious Coordinating Council in Israel, who has participated in numerous interfaith dialogues with Manasra over the years, said the comments were very surprising.

"If this is indeed that is what he said about the Holocaust and Zionism, I think those are very poor, unhelpful comparison. I have known Sheikh Manasra as a man of peace and dialogue. I urge him to rethink his comments if indeed he said them.

"I am sensitive to the pain caused by the Naqba [Israeli victory against the Arabs] but it is not to be compared to the Holocaust."

When Manasra discovered that The Jerusalem Post reporter interviewing him lived in a settlement beyond the Green Line he said, "You live on conquered land. Come live in Haifa, Ashdod or Tel Aviv.

"Besides, most of you are there because you love money," said Manasra. "A lot of you settlers are not even Jewish. They are Russians who oppose Judaism. I see them come to the Church in Nazareth."

Manasra was quick to condemn Israeli violence in Lebanon, but only after repeated questioning by The Post was Manasra willing to criticize the Hizbullah's bombing.

"But I do not want that statement against the Hizbullah to be placed prominently in your article," said Manasra to The Post.

He said that the relationship Sunni Arabs like himself had with the Shi'ite Hizbullah was "similar to the relation Jews had to the Black Hebrews in Dimona".

Manasra said he has been involved in interfaith dialogue since 1987. He said that as a Suffi Sunni with more moderate views than other Sunni orders, he has suffered financially. "The Saudis are opposed to the Suffis," said Manasra. "It's not easy to be a promoter of peace."


[Safed (Tzfat) article, from the "One Jerusalem" Web Site.....]

"Inside a War Zone Hospital:" By Joel Mowbray -- FrontPageMagazine.com | July 19, 2006

TZFAT, ISRAELThe screams of the 9-year-old girl as she pushed through the door immediately grabbed everyone's attention. No amount of reassuring from her mother could truly comfort her. Wrapped inside her mother's arms, the trembling child was too overwhelmed to comprehend the war going on around her.

As an adult, I felt oddly safe, despite the siren blaring in the distance. My adult mind was able to rationalize that the odds of being hit by a Katyusha rocket were actually infinitesimal. And I knew that inside the window-less center of the hospital, I really wasn't even at risk of flying shards of glass.

While a child might not think in terms of "odds," she didn't need to go far to witness justification for her fears. Since last Thursday, more than 100 local residents have come through the front door, some with severe physical injuries, others suffering from severe emotional trauma.

Just last night, a Hezbollah-launched Katyusha rocket smashed into the side of the building. Thankfully, it hit concrete, meaning there was no explosion inside the hospital. But since Katyushas spray shrapnel upward in a cone formation, the blast knocked out windows across the hospital. [FYI: This Hospital is directly next door to my block!!!!]

Walking through the children's wing the day after, it was clear that a miracle had occurred there. Even after a cleaning crew had done its work, glass was everywhere, including little shards wedged in the computer keyboard where kids normally are glued for hours at a time, day after day. But since the rocket hit after 10pm, no children were in the playroom.

Another child, though, was not as lucky. Recovering from spleen surgery one floor above the children's wing, 13-year-old Koby was watching TV at the time of the blast. Glass rained down on him, and he was gashed in the back of his head.

Further from the blast but on the same floor as the children's wing, 52-year-old Yakov Avoudboul was thrown out of his bed and across the room. This, though, was far less devastating than the rocket that exploded just one meter from him on Friday. An assistant chef at the hospital, Avoudboul was called in on the second day of sustained attacks to prepare meals for the increasing number of patients. Within moments of stepping out his front door, the rocket came within a whisker of killing him instantly.

The rocket explosion sprayed shrapnel into his legs, back, and arms. After he bathes, merely wrapping a towel around himself "feels like dragging nails across my back." The physical wounds, though, will heal. Far more long-lasting will be the emotional scars. "Since Friday, I don't sleep; I just relive the event," he said.

Like other populated civilian areas across northern Israel, Tzfat has been showered with Katyusha rockets for almost a week now. Despite this, some residents are actually trying to maintain some semblance of normality. Dr. Anthony Luder explained that he still walks his dog. The punchline to his story, though, was that minutes after he finished one such walk, a spot he had just been was hit by a Katyusha.

Welcome to life in Tzfat. Many residents have experienced near- misses or miraculous timing. Locals have been swapping stories for the past few days, and at least one person said this recent ritual is therapeutic. Based on the rest of the day's events, there will be more tales to tell.

Fifteen minutes after the sirenthe recommended time during which people should stay in sheltered positionsthe group of seven journalists I was with got on the bus and drove away. Less than a mile from the hospital, we saw at least two separate plumes of smoke rising up from the valley below. We received a call from the hospital executive who had shown us around that more rockets had just hit. News reports later indicated that several more rockets pounded the Tzfat area within hours of our departure.

For adults who escape physically intact, the long-term impact of the rocket attacks hopefully will be minimal. Compartmentalization and blocking painful memories are well-practiced skills for adult minds. But as we drove away with smoke from rocket explosions off in the distance, it was the image of the terrified 9-year-old girl I couldn't shake.


"In the land of guesthouses and Katyushas:" By Meron Rapoport -- Haaretz -- July 21, 2006

In the north, they still refer to the Acre-Safed road, even though it no longer reaches Safed. To reach the "capital of the Galilee," as declared by a sign at the entrance to the city that hasn't been the capital of anything for a long time, you have to get off the main road. Nonetheless, this road - which goes from Acre and passes by the ancient olives of the Beit Hakerem Valley - is the central road of the Galilee. "The Galilee of the nations," the prophet Isaiah called this region, because, as Yehoshua Steinberg writes in his "Milon Hatanakh Ivrit Ve'Aramit" ("Hebrew and Aramaic Bible Dictionary"), "the nations of all kinds held on and the tribes of Israel did not manage to dispossess them."

The situation hasn't changed much since the days of Isaiah. Today, too, many nations live in the Galilee, on both sides of the road: Jews, Arabs and Druze; Christians and Muslims; veteran immigrants and new immigrants.

This week I traveled along this road to see what the Katyushas have done to relations among the nations - or in other words, how they affected Jewish-Arab relations in the Galilee. I stopped in Majdal Krum, an Arab village that was hit by a barrage of Katyushas last Thursday; in Carmiel, which was hit by 25-30 Katyushas over the past week; and in Safed, second only to Nahariya in terms of the number of Katyushas that have struck there since the fighting began. I reached Carmiel half an hour after three Katyushas landed in the city center, and left Safed an hour before a barrage of rockets rained down. I encountered a few air-raid sirens on the way. All in all, it was a routine day this week in the land of guesthouses and Katyushas.

Majdal Krum [Village directly below Stacey's house]: 20 wounded:

Majdal Krum made the headlines last Thursday, when two houses there were the target of a direct rocket hit. Twenty people were wounded, and one of them is still hospitalized in moderate condition; he will apparently remain paralyzed in one hand. To say the barrage of rockets caught Majdal Krum by surprise would be the height of understatement. No one there had expected something like this - not the village residents and not the Home Front Command.

In the market area of the nearby village, Bana, I see an image typical of the emergency situation that prevails: 100 village children are boarding buses that will take them to safe places in the center of the country. The Noar Haoved Vehalomed youth movement organized the buses within 12 hours, Khalil Mohammed, who heads the local branch of the movement, says proudly in his movement-issue blue shirt with a red lace. The children will spend four days at Petah Tikva's Mekorot Hayarkon Park with Jewish children from other Galilee towns under attack. What's more Israeli than that?

Hassan Ali, the spokesman for the joint municipality of Majdal Krum, Bana and Dir al-Assad, says that this Israeliness is but an illusion. The gaps between Majdal Krum and neighboring Carmiel could be seen even in as Israeli a time as a Katyusha attack. The rescue teams couldn't pass through the narrow alleyways of the village, and police took more than an hour to reach one of two sites where rockets had fallen.

The rockets certainly helped bolster the feeling of Israeliness in Majdal Krum, giving the residents the feeling that they are on the receiving end of the Katyushas no less than residents of Carmiel [Just across the street from Carmiel]. In any case, people say the rockets don't distinguish between Arabs and Jews and that "we're all human beings," but residents of the Arab villages don't watch the local Channel 2 television station, they watch the Arab stations Al Jazeera, Al-Arabiya and Al-Manar, the Hezbollah channel. They saw the burned bodies of the children killed by an Israel Air Force strike on Marwahin, a Lebanese village less than 20 kilometers from the border. The Israeli Arabs clearly identify with the Lebanese civilians being attacked, and many Arabs in the Galilee - including Hassan Ali - have close relatives in Lebanese refugee camps, almost all of whom had been living in the Galilee in 1948.

Wadia Parhat is the patriarch of a family whose home was hit by a Katyusha rocket. Fortunately, no one was hurt, but the entire family - especially Parhat's wife and the grandchildren - are still in shock. Parhat himself slept with the window open "to see the Katyusha falling." His son Omran, a glass artist, laments the loss of the stained glass he worked on for years before it was destroyed in the rocket attack. Parhat is angry at Hezbollah leader Shiekh Hassan Nasrallah, who he says is firing rockets "like you throw gravel, without knowing what it will hit." Like Ali, Parhat has family in Lebanon, and he speculates that "maybe it was one of them who fired on us."

Parhat is angry, but unlike almost all the Jews I would meet in Carmiel and Safed, he thinks Israel should talk to Hezbollah instead of attacking it. Coming from him, the call for talks sounds like a request for help, an attempt to defend himself. "He's not a small person, Nasrallah. They can't do this with a person like that," says Parhat. "With such a person you need to reach a compromise. If [Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert tries to assassinate him, Nasrallah will assassinate Olmert's father's father." The family members shush Parhat. Apparently these aren't the comments that a Katyusha casualty is supposed to make.

Carmiel: Voluntary curfew

As we were sitting in Wadi Parhat's Majdal Krum home, we heard that a rocket landed in Carmiel. Ali takes us there. A Katyusha fell here, he points out, as though continuing the rocket tour of Majdal Krum. One of the Katyushas in the last barrage, I find out on my way to Carmiel, landed on the Galilee road. I know the Galilee road quite well; my wife Osnat's parents live 100 meters from there. I am told there are no casualties, so I am calm. Carmiel is no Paris, but it is nonetheless strange to see its business district at the entrance to the city so abandoned in the middle of the afternoon. There are only a few cars and barely anyone walking in the street - a big difference from what I saw in Majdal Krum and Bana.

The streets in the Arab villages are not crowded, but the stores are open and the villages don't seem like they are under curfew. The Arab villages are taking the war a little less seriously, as though it doesn't really affect them. On Wednesday morning, I am told, the Nazareth market was crowded. Jews made their way there as well, thinking that maybe Nazareth was outside Hezbollah's sights. That afternoon rockets hit the city, killing two children - brothers - outside their home. That evening, the streets of Nazareth, too, were empty.

What is clear is that the voluntary curfew imposed on Carmiel and the other northern cities only increases the pressure. The Carmiel municipal spokeswoman, Lavia Shilo-Fisher, says there are no exact statistics on how many people have left the city since the rocket fire began, but a look around shows that those left behind are primarily the poor: immigrants from Russia, Ethiopia and Romania, and local youth looking for some action.

"It's great that Katyushas fell here," says one of the youths. "I want more to fall. It should be a mess here. I want a revolution." Another youth, Adi, says a Katyusha landed right next to him as he was walking in the street and adds that he will go looking for some Arabs to beat up. "There are fights with the Arabs every day here," he says. "If you see an Arab, you have to hit him. After what happened here, tonight we'll go looking for Arabs. It'll be intense."

The bomb shelter in my parents-in-law's apartment building looks like an ad for the absorption department of the Jewish Agency: Russians, Ethiopians, Georgians. Zvi Winkler, my father-in-law, has refused to go down to the shelter, as have several Russian neighbors who lived through the Nazi bombardment of the Soviet Union in World War II; they don't get excited by a few Katyushas. They don't speak about politics, except for a Georgian neighbor who is glued to the radio and says she is prepared to stay in the shelter for as long as necessary - the important thing is that they finish off Hezbollah. All of them. That is the accepted opinion in the city, says Zvi, but he takes pity on the Arabs in the Galilee. They have a hard time with us, the Israelis, and they have a hard time with Hezbollah.

Safed: Erased from the map

Dr. Calin Shapira, deputy director of the government-run Rebecca Sieff Hospital in Safed, is mainly worried by the feeling of remoteness that has overtaken the city since a bypass road was built. Shapira, who has worked at the hospital for 30 years, says it is as though Safed has been erased from the map. Now, with the Katyushas, that feeling of remoteness has only been reinforced.

"There's no mail, there's no public transportation, the pharmacies are closed," says Shapira. "We just moved offices within the hospital and we were supposed to install telephones in the new offices. The company that installs the phones told us that they aren't going to the north. Other suppliers also aren't coming. The state was not ready for this situation."

The city center gives off a feeling of abandonment, reflecting estimates that 60 percent of Safed residents have fled south. But Safed Mayor Yishai Maimon says he thinks those estimates are too high. "When the Katyushas fell on Mount Cana'an on Tuesday, we were sure that the neighborhood was empty," says Maimon. "But when we got there, suddenly people came out from under the ground."

When it comes to the question of what Israel should do to Hezbollah, it turns out that it is no mere road dividing Carmiel and Majdal Krum, Safed and Bana, but rather a deep chasm. An Arab man from the north of the country told me that even since the rockets hit Nazareth and killed the two boys, Hezbollah still has the support of many Israeli Arabs. "They won't fly a Hezbollah flag," he says. "But they feel satisfied that Israel is getting it, even if they are getting it themselves. On Al-Manar, you hear messages coming from Arabs from Israel who tell Hezbollah to continue the opposition. Don't forget that many Israeli Arabs have relatives sitting in jail. Nasrallah promises to try to release them."

But despite the major differences of opinion, the Jewish and Arab residents of the north share similar stories of deprivation. In Bana and Majdal Krum, I heard complaints about a shortage of bomb shelters and about being ignored by the establishment. The Home Front Command remembered only Wednesday that it needs to translate its announcements into Arabic. Perhaps they have only just heard the rumor that nearly half the residents of the bombarded Galilee are Arabs. In Carmiel and Safed, the complaints are more specific. Residents there tell of closed bomb shelters, health clinics that have closed their doors, banks that did not refill their ATMs, bored children unable to stay in the house day after day, endless sirens that drive people crazy, and a cigarette company that has stopped selling its merchandise in the north. The feeling is that on both sides of the divide, the residents of the north have been abandoned almost to the same extent.


[After a delightful respite from rockets here, they're at it AGAIN.....]

Rockets strike Haifa, other Israeli towns: Israel's attacks against Hezbollah enter 10th day in Lebanon CNN -- Friday, July 21, 2006; Posted: 9:52 a.m. EDT

BEIRUT, Lebanon (CNN) -- Rocket attacks hit Haifa and other Israeli towns Friday in a fresh wave of strikes from Lebanon, while Israel urged people in southern Lebanon to leave their homes and move north.

Israeli emergency personnel help victims of rocket attacks Friday in the northern city of Haifa. At least 19 people were wounded in the northern port city of Haifa, and Hezbollah rockets also hit the towns of Meron, Safed, Yiron and Avivim, Israeli medical officials said. About 15 rockets fell in the volley of attacks, the Israeli military said.

At a Haifa hospital, one critically injured woman in her 60s had lost a leg. Another patient appeared to have a head wound. Residents said one of the rockets hit a post office in the city.

To the north, Israel launched new military strikes inside Lebanon on the 10th day of violence since Hezbollah guerrillas triggered the crisis by capturing two Israeli soldiers in a cross-border raid.

Also Friday, a U.N. observation post was struck in southern Lebanon, but there were conflicting reports about how the strike happened. Israeli forces said a Hezbollah rocket hit the post, near the northern Israeli town of Zarit. There were no immediate reports of casualties, said Israel Defense Forces. But a U.N. officer told The Associated Press that the strike was an artillery shell fired by Israeli forces.

The facility was severely damaged, and Ghanaian troops manning the post were safe inside bomb shelters at the time of the strike, the U.N. official told the AP.

Overall, the IDF said it had struck 40 targets in Lebanon overnight, [Thus, that lovely period of calm here, last night!!!!] including Hezbollah headquarters, missile-launching sites along the Israeli- Lebanese border, rocket launchers, vehicles and access routes.

There were possible signs of new Israeli military deployments as the Israeli military said Friday that it's ready to call up a few thousand reserve troops to augment its military operations along the Israeli- Lebanese border. (See map of area) About 1,000 Israeli troops have been sent across the border to conduct pinpoint operations against Hezbollah strongholds, sources said.

Israel dropped leaflets in southern Lebanon urging residents to leave their homes and move north of the Litani River -- 25 miles (40 kilometers) from the border. Lebanese President Emile Lahoud said the Lebanese army is "ready to defend" the country's territory if there were a possible Israeli ground invasion.

"Of course, the army is going to defend its land, and inside Lebanon, they can do a lot," Lahoud said. "They cannot be strong enough to be against Israel on the frontier."

Israeli choppers collide:

Early Friday, two Israeli Apache attack helicopters collided and crashed in northern Israel near Avivim, the IDF said. One pilot was killed and three others injured. (Watch CNN video: Israeli pilots talk about flying missions over Lebanon -- 1:54)

Overall, the Israeli military says its air assault has destroyed about half of Hezbollah's military strength since its operations began July 12. CNN cannot independently confirm Israel's estimation of Hezbollah's military strength.

But Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah told Arabic-language TV network Al-Jazeera on Thursday that Israel's assertions were untrue. (Watch CNN video as Nasrallah promises Hezbollah "surprises" -- 1:17)

The Lebanese security forces said Thursday that 258 civilians have been killed and another 582 injured. But in a speech to diplomats in Beirut the day before, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora put the death toll higher, at more than 300, and said the wounded numbered about 1,000.

The newly reported deaths in southern Lebanon bring the number of confirmed Israeli military fatalities to 19, with another 15 civilians reported killed.

Cease-fire demands:

In an address to the U.N. Security Council on Thurs, U.N. Secretary- General Kofi Annan [This guy has more nerve than brains!!!!] demanded "an immediate cessation of hostilities" to prevent further loss of life, allow for humanitarian relief and give diplomacy a chance.

[Can he tell us how to use "diplomacy" with terrorists?!?! See: www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Government/Communiques/2006/ Political-Security+Cabinet+communique+19-Jul-2006.htm (July 19)

Political-Security Cabinet communique:
- unconditional release of abducted soldiers;
- halt to the firing of rockets against Israel;
- full implementation of UNSC res 1559!!!!]

Israel has rejected calls for a cease-fire until it can push Hezbollah back from its northern frontier and retrieve its captured soldiers.

The United States and Israel consider Hezbollah a terrorist organization. The group, which has claimed responsibility for terrorist acts, also operates an extensive network of social services in Lebanon, and its political wing holds seats in the Lebanese parliament.

Israeli forces spent more than two decades occupying parts of southern Lebanon after a 1978 invasion to set up a buffer against guerrilla attacks. The United Nations verified Israel's pullout in 2000.

Clashes in Gaza:

Meanwhile in Gaza, a Palestinian militant and four others died Friday in an attack on a Gaza City home, Palestinian sources said. Earlier, Israeli tanks and troops withdrew from the Maghazi refugee camp in central Gaza after a deadly two-day raid, the IDF said.

Israel is continuing its military operation in Gaza, with the stated aim of stopping Palestinian militant attacks on Israel and recovering a soldier captured in June. Some 19 Palestinians have been killed since Tuesday, according to Palestinian sources.

Other developments:

The Red Cross sent 22 tons of food and supplies, along with a nutritionist and a surgeon, from Beirut to Tyre, Lebanon, on Friday, according to the international relief agency. On Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert approved the establishment of a humanitarian corridor on the Mediterranean to allow the passage of international aid to Lebanese civilians via Cyprus, an Israeli government official said.

CNN's Hala Gorani, Paula Newton, Cal Perry, Aneesh Raman, Nic Robertson, Barbara Starr and Alessio Vinci contributed to this report.


"5000 called up in latest mobilization" By Yaakov Katz, Jpost.Com Staff And AP July 21, 2006 16:52

The IDF sent out emergency calls for 5,000 reserve soldiers on Friday in addition to the reserves already called up. [Please be sure to keep all of us, especially our boys in the IDF, in your prayers!!!!]

OC Northern Command Maj.-Gen. Udi Adam stated that the move was done in order to relieve some of the forces currently operating in northern Israel. He noted that ground forces were necessary to penetrate Hizbullah bunkers that could not be reached by the Air Force.

Meanwhile, in its continuing attacks on terrorist infrastructure, the IDF struck two rocket launch cells in southern Lebanon on Friday, apparently killing the operatives. The terrorists were struck as they were launching rockets. The IDF believed the people struck were the same ones who launched the barrage of rockets that assailed Haifa and the northern Galilee early Friday afternoon. Hizbullah headquarters & communication lines were also among the targets struck during the day.

Adam told the press that the IDF had damaged Hizbullah's capabilities. He reported that at least 20 operatives were killed in the harsh cross- border battles in Maroun a-Ras, north of the Israeli town of Avivim along the northern border. He stated that the decrease in rocket launchings recently was a result of the IDF operation.

Still, the major general urged the public to be patient, as the current tension was expected to be a prolonged campaign and was likely to cost more casualties. The heavy exchange of fire cost the lives of five IDF soldiers on Wednesday and Thursday.

The IDF resumed attacks on Lebanon at daybreak on Friday, pounding the country's main road link to Syria with missiles and setting passenger buses on fire, Lebanese police said. Part of Lebanon's longest bridge collapsed, police said. The passenger buses were in the Bekaa valley about 15 kilometers from the Syrian border, on the road linking Beirut and the Syrian capital of Damascus.

The strike set three buses on fire at Taanayel, but there were no casualties, police said. Drivers abandoned the vehicles after one missile hit nearby, and then more missiles struck. The buses had dropped off in Syria evacuating foreigners, the police said.

Up in the mountains of central Lebanon on the Beirut-Damascus highway, IAF warplanes fired four missiles on a bridge linking two steep mountain peaks. Part of the bridge collapsed. The 1-mile-long (1.6-kilometer-long) structure has been hit several times since the fighting began.

Warplanes also attacked Hizbullah strongholds in south Beirut and in eastern Lebanon overnight. Witnesses said one explosion was heard in south Beirut, which has become a regular target for airstrikes over the past few days.


[Not enough in the north & the south, now in the center of Israel.....]

"Two terror suspects arrested in TA:"/b> By Jpost.Com Staff -- July 21, 2006 21:18

Police special forces arrested a woman and another person suspected of being involved in a planned suicide terror attack in central Tel Aviv on Friday night.

The two were reportedly arrested near the beach-side Dan Hotel on Hayarkon Street in central Tel Aviv after the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) passed an intelligence alert to the Israel Police of a possible suicide terrorist inside central Tel Aviv.

Police sappers were reportedly checking the vehicle in which the woman was sitting along with another three people.

Intelligence indicated the terrorist was headed to an entertainment establishment in Tel Aviv. Friday night is customarily the most popular time for clubbing and entertainment in Tel Aviv, Israel's largest city.

Earlier, roadblocks were set up at the entrance to the city. Large police forces were deployed throughout the Dan and Shfela regions in searches for the terrorist. The operations included hundreds of officers from the Tel Aviv and Central Regions. Hospitals were placed on alert in the Dan area.


[But, on the BRIGHT side.....]

Halutz: Hizbullah loses 100 fighters: By Jpost.Com Staff -- July 21, 2006 21:13

Speaking to reporters about the fighting in the North and in the Gaza Strip, Halutz said that the two facts that "the Hizbullah does not publish its dead or damage and has lied to the media are indicative [of its condition]."

"The fighting in Lebanon has cost the Hizbullah a high price," IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz said on Friday evening. "About 100 Hizbullah fighters were killed in IDF operations."

Halutz warned Israelis that the success of operations in Lebanon could take time. "This war is difficult and complex," he said. "The enemy has no restraints, moral or otherwise, and no responsibility for the country it is destroying. The 'protector of Lebanon' is destroying Lebanon."

In outlining the IDF's strategic goal, Halutz said that "Our mission is to return security to Israel's citizens." In order to achieve that, he added, "The IDF will continue to strike at [the Hizbullah]. Our soldiers and commanders have our full backing."

According to the chief of staff, "Israel's past restraint has been interpreted by the terrorists as weakness. I think they have made a mistake." He added that "the IDF's recommendation [to the government] was to work to end this perception [of weakness]."


Arithmetic of Pain: By Alan M. Dershowitz Jewish World Review July 20, 2006 / 24 Tamuz, 5766 JWR contributor Alan M. Dershowitz is a professor of law at Harvard. "Disproportionate" response? The misuse of civilians as shields and swords requires a reassessment of the rules of war:

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | There is no democracy in the world that should tolerate missiles being fired at its cities without taking every reasonable step to stop the attacks. The big question raised by Israel's military actions in Lebanon is what is "reasonable." The answer, according to the laws of war, is that it is reasonable to attack military targets, so long as every effort is made to reduce civilian casualties. If the objectives cannot be achieved without some civilian casualties, these must be "proportional" to the civilian casualties that would be prevented by the military action.

This is all well and good for democratic nations that deliberately locate their military bases away from civilian population centers. Israel has its air force, nuclear facilities and large army bases in locations as remote as anything can be in that country. It is possible for an enemy to attack Israeli military targets without inflicting "collateral damage" on its civilian population. Hezbollah and Hamas, by contrast, deliberately operate military wings out of densely populated areas. They launch antipersonnel missiles with ball-bearing shrapnel, designed by Syria and Iran to maximize civilian casualties, and then hide from retaliation by living among civilians. If Israel decides not to go after them for fear of harming civilians, the terrorists win by continuing to have free rein in attacking civilians with rockets. If Israel does attack, and causes civilian casualties, the terrorists win a propaganda victory: The international community pounces on Israel for its "disproportionate" response. This chorus of condemnation actually encourages the terrorists to operate from civilian areas.

While Israel does everything reasonable to minimize civilian casualties not always with success Hezbollah and Hamas want to maximize civilian casualties on both sides. Islamic terrorists, a diplomat commented years ago, "have mastered the harsh arithmetic of pain... Palestinian casualties play in their favor and Israeli casualties play in their favor." These are groups that send children to die as suicide bombers, sometimes without the child knowing that he is being sacrificed. Two years ago, an 11-year-old was paid to take a parcel through Israeli security. Unbeknownst to him, it contained a bomb that was to be detonated remotely. (Fortunately the plot was foiled.)

This misuse of civilians as shields and swords requires a reassessment of the laws of war. The distinction between combatants and civilians easy when combatants were uniformed members of armies that fought on battlefields distant from civilian centers is more difficult in the present context. Now, there is a continuum of "civilianality": Near the most civilian end of this continuum are the pure innocents babies, hostages and others completely uninvolved; at the more combatant end are civilians who willingly harbor terrorists, provide material resources and serve as human shields; in the middle are those who support the terrorists politically, or spiritually.

The laws of war and the rules of morality must adapt to these realities. An analogy to domestic criminal law is instructive: A bank robber who takes a teller hostage and fires at police from behind his human shield is guilty of murder if they, in an effort to stop the robber from shooting, accidentally kill the hostage. The same should be true of terrorists who use civilians as shields from behind whom they fire their rockets. The terrorists must be held legally and morally responsible for the deaths of the civilians, even if the direct physical cause was an Israeli rocket aimed at those targeting Israeli citizens.

Israel must be allowed to finish the fight that Hamas & Hezbollah started, even if that means civilian casualties in Gaza and Lebanon.

A democracy is entitled to prefer the lives of its own innocents over the lives of the civilians of an aggressor, especially if the latter group contains many who are complicit in terrorism. Israel will and should take every precaution to minimize civilian casualties on the other side. On July 16, Hasan Nasrallah, the head of Hezbollah, announced there will be new "surprises," and the Aska Martyrs Brigade said that it had developed chemical and biological weapons that could be added to its rockets.

Should Israel not be allowed to pre-empt their use?

Israel left Lebanon in 2000 & Gaza in 2005. These are not "occupied" territories. Yet they serve as launching pads for attacks on Israeli civilians. Occupation does not cause terrorism, then, but terrorism seems to cause occupation. If Israel is not to reoccupy to prevent terrorism, the Lebanese government and the Palestinian Authority must ensure that these regions cease to be terrorist safe havens.


[Debbie, in this story, sounds just like me.....Sandy]

'If you think of yourself as Israeli, there's really not a choice': By Ira Moskowitz -- Haaretz -- July 21, 2006

SHARON, Massachusetts - A special El Al flight from New York brought 220 American immigrants to Israel yesterday. The flight was the second of seven Jewish Agency/Nefesh B'Nefesh charters planned for this summer, and the first to arrive since warfare erupted on Israel's northern front. According to the Nefesh B'Nefesh organization, 20 prospective immigrants who had signed up for yesterday's flight decided to postpone their arrival at least for a week or two.

On the eve of the flight, Haaretz visited with Joel and Debbie Wine in Sharon, Massachusetts as they struggled to finish packing their belongings, complete a list of last-minute errands, tend to their three young children and say good-bye to friends and family. "Yes, it's crazy globally and crazy in our little world, getting everything done," Joel acknowledged, sitting on a folding chair among the open suitcases and sprawl of unpacked items.

After the war in the north began, people started asking them whether they still planned to move to Israel. "With what's going on now, we're being made out to be some sort of heroes," Joel said. "But this is Israel, and if you think of yourself as Israeli, you realize there's really not a choice. We've mentally, psychologically, emotionally made the commitment to be part of the people of Israel in the Land of Israel, and unfortunately, this [war] is part of the reality." When he received an email from Nefesh B'Nefesh this week confirming that the flight was still on, he sent a one-word reply: "Good."

Moving to Israel is something Joel and Debbie have talked about for years. "It was really part of our dialogue ever since courtship," Joel said, adding that Debbie was more of the driving force behind their decision to finally come. Joel, 37, and Debbie, 36, met during their student days at Columbia University. After marrying, they lived for several years in Riverdale, New York before settling in Joel's hometown of Sharon, a wooded community of some 18,000 people about 22 miles southwest of Boston.

Sharon is known for its strong Jewish presence. According to the web site of the local Catholic church, the town's population is 75 percent Jewish. Joel was not sure of the exact numbers, but recited a list of the local Jewish congregations: three Orthodox, two Conservative, one Reform and one Reconstructionist.

For a committed Jew, the town is about the best place one can imagine in the Diaspora, Joel said. He made it clear that the family's decision to relocate to Modi'in was not because they were unhappy in Sharon. "It's an amazing community. We enjoyed a wonderful suburban lifestyle, with three kids and a dog, a wonderful house [about 2,400 square feet], a two-car garage, eight-tenths of an acre, and it's close to my parents."

Debbie, originally from Los Angeles, has also come to love New England and said that she will especially miss the fall, when the leaves change colors and the family goes apple picking. Israel may lack this verdant charm, but it offers a different kind of beauty, she explained. More importantly, the Israeli landscape is imbued with a deeper sense of purpose for her: "You sense not only the physical history of the land, but also the history of all the people who have died to protect it and worked so hard to build up this incredible gift for the Jewish people, and I feel like I have to accept it if I'm able to do that."

American history fails to engage Debbie in the same personal and profound way. "I don't feel that same connection, and it's ironic, because I'm a seventh-generation American and that's pretty rare."

Joel and Debbie hope their children - Noam (7), Meirav (5) and Liron (four months) will develop the same type of ties toward Israel. "We're hoping that they'll look to Israeli soldiers as heroes rather than the commercial superheroes and princesses that seem to dominate American children's media," Debbie said.


Wedding under fire: By Miri Chason -- YNet News -- July 20, 2006

Maya and Shlomi Buskila refused to let Nasrallah ruin their big day. Thursday afternoon, they were married in a shelter in Kiryat Shmona. Mazel Tov!!!!

Everyone knows the sad and scary stories of the past few days in the north. This Thursday, in Kiryat Shmona, a different type of story broke the trend for a few hours. July is usually known as the 'wedding month', but 2006 has seen a number of cancellations due to the security situation. Maya and Shlomi decided that, despite the rockets, this would not be the case with them.

The couple replaced their intended 900-person convention center with the Matmid school bomb shelter in their home town of Kiryat Shmona. "We'll be celebrating the wedding night in a shelter as well," said the brand-new groom.

Despite the happy ending, the journey to get there was rough. Maya's sister, Shilat Lugasi, said that only days before the event, the mikveh ceremony was accompanied by sounds of gunfire. "When we arrived at the mikveh, we wanted to cheer the bride, but just as she was about to be dipped in the water, a fire exchange began in Metulla and three- fourths of the girls ran away. It was very scary," she said.

The escalation on the northern border took its toll on the bride, as she saw how the wedding she'd dreamed of for years was slowly falling apart. Her father, Albert, elaborated: "They were in a very bad mood. In one moment, everything was ruined for them.

They'd saved up every penny they earned in order to have this wedding and nothing was going according to plan. They already put down a fifty percent down payment on everything but it's unclear what will happen with the money now. I hope that they'll be able to survive it."

When Maya got out of her car in her wedding dress, she was shocked by the many cameras that greeted her. Instead of guests, she was surrounded by news crews, all asking to document the triumph of the human interest in a time of turmoil. The ice slowly melted and, by the time the cup was broken, the young couple started to smile.

During the entire ceremony, many explosions were heard, but the guests hurried to comfort one another: "that's us firing, not them." The DJ added to the atmosphere and asked guests to "dance and be happy, so that Nasrallah would hear them rejoicing." "At first I was very stressed out, but now everything is good," said the young bride. "The most important thing is that we're together as man and wife. Nothing else matters to me," added her husband. See the VIDEO: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3279150,00.html


[As promised above, this FAQ from the Israeli Government.....]

Behind the Headlines: Israel's counter terrorist campaign Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs -- 18 Jul 2006

Frequently asked questions:<> 1. Why is Israel conducting military operations against Lebanon?

Israel has suffered an unprovoked cross-border attack from Lebanese territory. The attack was carried out by the Hizbullah, which is a party to the Government of Lebanon. The attack was carried out against Israelis citizens - civilians and soldiers - while on sovereign Israeli soil. In these circumstances, Israel has no alternative but to defend itself and its citizens. For this reason, Israel is now reacting to an act of war by a neighboring sovereign state. The purpose of the Israeli operation is two-fold - to free its abducted soldiers, and to remove the terrorist threat from its northern border. Israel views Lebanon as responsible for the present situation, and it shall bear the consequences.

2. Is Israel using disproportionate force?

Proportionality must be measured in terms of the extent of the threat. Israel's actions result not just from Hizbullah's unprovoked attack against Israel and the abduction of two soldiers. Israel's military operation is also being carried out against the real and tangible Hizbullah threat against more than a million civilians, throughout northern Israel. The Hizbullah - a terrorist organization dedicated to Israel's destruction which controls southern Lebanon - has over twelve thousand missiles targeted against Israel and has launched hundreds of them in the past few days. The massive use by Hizbullah of these missiles, causing numerous civilian deaths, hundreds of casualties and widespread destruction, makes Israel's actions necessary. One should ask, "What would other states do when confronted with a threat of this magnitude?"

3. Why does Israel bomb civilian buildings and infrastructure?

The Hizbullah is carrying out indiscriminate missile attacks against Israeli population centers. Fifteen Israeli civilians - Jews as well as Arabs - have been killed, including three young children. Attacks have been carried out against large cities such as Haifa, small farms such as Meron and religious sites such as Safed and Nazareth.

Israel only targets facilities which directly serve the terrorist organizations in their attacks against Israel. For example, Israel targeted the Beirut International Airport and the Beirut-Damascus Highway because they serve Hizbullah to re-supply itself with weapons and ammunition. Israel has also targeted buildings, such as the Hizbullah Television studios, which act as a vital means of communication for terrorist operatives.

Unfortunately, the terrorists have purposely hidden themselves and stockpiled their missiles in residential areas, thus endangering the surrounding populations. Indeed, many of the missiles recently fired at Israel were stored and launched from private homes, commandeered by Hizbullah terrorists wishing to shield their actions behind civilians in order to thwart Israel's response.

Despite this cruel exploitation of civilians, Israel is taking extreme care to reduce to a minimum the risk to which the population is exposed - often at the cost of operational advantages. For example, leaflets are dropped urging residents to avoid certain Hizbullah installations, even though such prior warning reduces Israel's element of surprise.

4. Isn't Israel concerned about the mounting number of civilian casualties?

Israel regrets the loss of innocent lives. Israel does not target civilians, yet is forced to take decisive action against Hizbullah, a ruthless terrorist organization which has over 12,000 missiles pointing towards its cities. Israel, like any other country, must protect its citizens, and has no choice but to remove this grave threat to the lives of millions of innocent civilians. Had Hizbullah not established such a missile force, Israel would have no need to take action, and had Hizbullah chosen to set up its arsenal away from populated areas, no civilians would have been hurt when Israel does what it obviously must do. The responsibility for the tragic situation lies solely with the Hizbullah.

5. What is Israel doing to help the foreign nationals stranded in Lebanon?

Israel has expressed its profound sorrow and regret at the deaths of any foreign nationals in Lebanon who are uninvolved in the violence. Israel is doing everything it can to coordinate, through discreet channels, the evacuation of all foreign nationals who wish to leave Lebanon.

6. Why didn't Israel show restraint and use diplomacy before resorting to force?

Israel has shown restraint for over six years. In May 2000 Israel took the politically difficult decision to fully withdraw from southern Lebanon, having been compelled a few years earlier to establish a security zone there in order to prevent terrorist attacks and rocket shelling into Israeli towns. The UN Security Council acknowledged Israel's complete withdrawal from southern Lebanon in full compliance with Resolution 425. The Lebanese government was given an opportunity to take full control of the south and establish a peaceful border with Israel. Instead, it chose to succumb to terror rather than vanquish it, and allowed the Hizbullah to occupy the areas adjacent to the border and to accumulate a vast arsenal of rockets and missles.

Israel repeatedly sounded warnings, and called upon the international community to urge Lebanon to reign in the Hizbullah, remove its gunmen from their border positions and dismantle their growing stockpile of missiles. Sadly, Lebanon did not heed the demands of the international community to exercise its sovereignty and disarm Hizbullah, and today, the Lebanese people must unfortunately bear the consequences of their government's inaction.

7. How does Israel expect the government of Lebanon to take action after having demonstrated years of inaction and ineffectiveness?

The recent reduction of the Syrian military presence in Lebanon has allowed Beirut more freedom of action in order to promote Lebanese interests, yet no action whatsoever has yet been taken against the Hizbullah.

The government of Lebanon bears responsibility for the Hizbullah threat. It provided the Hizbullah with official legitimacy and allowed its armed operations to proceed unhindered. Hizbullah would never have obtained the missiles and military equipment at its disposal had the Lebanese government not allowed this weaponry to reach Lebanon. Hizbullah's threat along Israel's border would not have been possible were it not for the failure of the Lebanese government to deploy its forces in southern Lebanon.

It is the responsibility of the government of Lebanon to fulfill its obligation as a sovereign state to extend its control over its own territory, as called for by Security Council resolutions 425 and 1559. Through its operation, Israel expects both to pressure the Beirut government to take action, and to facilitate this action by providing the international encouragement and the operational conditions favorable to the disarming of Hizbullah and the effective deployment of the Lebanese army southward to the Israel-Lebanon border.

8. Why does Israel say that Syria and Iran are involved in the Hamas and Hizbullah terrorism?

Syria hosts in its capital, Damascus, the headquarters of a number of Palestinian Jihadist terrorist groups, including Hamas. They provide shelter and logistical support for Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, who has been living there for a number of years. From Damascus, Mashaal commands terrorists within the Palestinian territories who carry out ongoing attacks against Israel and its citizens, including the bombardment of southern Israel with Kassam missiles and the recent terrorist infiltration and abduction of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. Syria also provides support to the Hizbullah, including the transfer of arms, munitions and operatives through the Damascus airport and border crossings into Lebanon. The Hizbullah would not be able to operate in Lebanon without clear Syrian sponsorship.

Iran is the main benefactor of the Hizbullah. It provides funding, weapons, directives and even Iranian cadre (the "Pazdaran" Revolutionary Guards) for this terrorist organization. The long-range missiles which hit the Israeli cities of Haifa and Karmiel (13 July) were manufactured by Iran, as was the guided missile fired against an Israeli missile boat off the Lebanese coast. For all practical purposes, Hizbullah is merely an arm of the Teheran Jihadist regime. Iran has also made considerable inroads of influence into Palestinian terrorist organization, including Fatah's al-Aqsa Brigade and Hamas' Iz a-Din al-Kassam group. It provides their terror cells with funding, technical instruction and operational directives.

9. What motivates Hamas and Hizbullah, and why does Syria and Iran support them?

Hamas and Hizbullah are driven by an extremist Jihadist ideology which calls for the immediate destruction of the State of Israel - as part of an international effort to wage "Holy War" against the "infidel" Western world in order that their radical brand of Islam prevail throughout the globe.

Syria and Iran support these groups, not only because they support their ideology, but also because they provide Damascus and Teheran with a tool to strengthen the influence of their own regimes and to divert attention from other issues which have exposed them lately to international pressure. Syria is facing rising criticism over its involvement in the murder of ex-Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and its interference in Lebanese affairs. Iran is exposed to widening pressure over its nuclear development program. In addition, the international community is denouncing both regimes for their dismal human rights record.

Consequently, Israel views Hamas, Hizbullah, Syria and Iran as primary elements in the Jihad/Terror Axis threatening not only Israel but the entire Western world.

10. How will Israel respond to the bombardment of Haifa?

The hundreds of ongoing rocket attacks from Lebanon by Hizbullah against Haifa and Israel's north, in which twelve civilians have been killed and scores wounded, should dispel once and for all any popular myth depicting Hizbullah as an ill-equipped guerrilla force. As the proxy of Iran created in the 1980s to carry out that country's hostile acts toward Israel - in disregard and violation of Lebanese sovereignty - Hizbullah has received massive shipments of state-of-the-art weaponry from Teheran's arsenal, transshipped through Syria.

A senior Iranian army officer stated Sunday to the Arabic-language newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat that the Islamic Republic's Revolutionary Guard set up dozens of advanced rocket and missile bases in the Lebanon Valley and along the border with Israel. Between 1992 and 2005 Hizbullah received some 11,500 short to medium range missiles and rockets. The official also said Hizbullah is in possession of four types of advanced ground-to-ground missiles: Fajr missiles with a range of 100 kilometers, Iran 130 missiles with a range of 90-110 kilometers, Shahin missiles with a range of up to 150 kilometers and a 355 millimeter rockets with a 150 kilometer range. On Friday night, July 14, Hizbullah demonstrated a previously unknown capability when it fired a sophisticated, Iranian-made, radar-guided ship-to-shore missile at an Israel Navy missile corvette, the INS Hanit, killing four sailors.

In the face of this grave Hizbullah aggression, Israel will do whatever is necessary to remove the terrorist threat from its population centers, as would any other state in a similar situation.

11. How will Israel pressure Syria and Iran?

There is a widening consensus in the international arena that Jihadist terror is a global menace which must be confronted with determination and resolve. Israel has been in intensive contact with foreign governments and world organizations, in order to coordination pressure on these regimes, ensuring they understand that the price that they'll pay internationally for their support of terrorism will be unbearably high.

12. If Syria and Iran are behind the terrorism, why is Israel attacking Lebanon?

Israel is not attacking the government of Lebanon, but rather, Hizbullah military assets within Lebanon. Israel has avoided striking at Lebanese military installations, unless these have been used to assist the Hizbullah, as were a number of radar facilities which Israel destroyed after they helped the terrorists fire a shore-to-ship missile at an Israeli corvette. With regard to Syria and Iran, Israel has no desire to escalate the military action beyond the present theaters of operation in Lebanon and Gaza. Israel feels that the involvement of Syria and Iran is best addressed, at present, through coordinated diplomatic pressure.

13. It appears that Israel faces a two-front conflict. Are they the two fronts in fact connected?

Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah, in his press conference after the 12 July attack, presented his list of ransom demands for the release of the abducted Israeli soldiers. It included a demand for the release of Hamas terrorist inmates as well as members of Hizbullah. This is indicative of the fact that the level of coordination of these two Jihadist terror groups is not just ideological but operational as well.

14. Israel has stated that is won't negotiate with Hamas, but what about Hizbullah?

Following the 12 July attack from Lebanon, Prime Minister Olmert stated that "Israel will not give in to extortion and will not negotiate with terrorists regarding the lives of Israel soldiers."

15. What are the diplomatic avenues available to end this crisis?

Regarding Lebanon, Israel understands that although military operations are now necessary to defend its citizens by neutralizing the threat posed by Hizbullah's terrorist infrastructure, the eventual solution is indeed diplomatic. On this level, there is no substantive difference whatsoever between the Israeli position and that of the international community.

The components of such a solution are as follows:
- The return of the hostages, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev;
- A complete cease fire;
- Deployment of the Lebanese army in all of southern Lebanon;
- Expulsion of Hizbullah from the area, and
- Fulfillment of United Nations Resolution 1559.

On the Palestinian front, Israel will conduct continuous counter-terrorist operations until Hamas terrorism ceases, the hostage Gilad Shalit is returned home safely and the shooting of Qassam missiles against Israeli cities bordering Gaza stops. There will be no negotiations on a release of prisoners.

16. What is Israel's view of the 16 July G-8 statement on the situation?

Israel welcomes the recognition of the G-8 nations that Hizbullah and Hamas are responsible for initiating the current violence by their unprovoked attacks on Israel's civilians and abductions of Israeli soldiers within Israel's sovereign borders. The G-8 statement attests to the fact that Israel and the international community share common values and are facing a common problem - the grave threat posed by extreme Jihadist terrorist organizations, such as Hizbullah and Hamas. Like the G-8, Israel believes that the way to a solution lies with the release of the abducted soldiers, the cessation of rocket fire on Israel, and Lebanon's full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559 requiring the disarming of Hizbullah.

17. Does Israel support the initiative to establish an international peace-keeping force?

Israel will support all international efforts meant to promote the return of the abducted soldiers and the full implementation of UN Security Council 1559, which calls for Lebanon to extend its sovereignty over all its territory, deploy the Lebanese army southward to the border, and disarm Hizbullah.

18. How long will the Israeli operation last?

The international community understands that in order for the objectives to be achieved, the operation cannot be halted before the implementation of the G-8 decision. While diplomatic negotiations will be necessary in order to facilitate implementation, the start of negotiations in itself will not halt the operations. This will only occur after the return of the abducted soldiers and the removal of the missile threat against Israel.


[As the bombs fall, we wonder about tomorrow.....
Who will hide? Who will cry?
And who will die?

I have just read & signed the petition: "Re-Affirm America's Support for Israel"!!!! Please help by signing this petition!!!! It takes 30 seconds & will really help.....please follow this link: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/467856070 Thank you!!!! BTW: You can view this petition & my signature here, as well!!!!

Remember what Martin Luther King, Jr. said: "The time is always right to do what is right"]

Sandy Rosen-Hazen lives in Safed. Contact her at Sandy@israel.net

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Posted by Judy Lash Balint, July 21, 2006.

Five Israeli soldiers were buried today. Among them was Benjy Hillman, 27, z"tl, the son of one of my oldest friends. Benjy was a commander in the elite Egoz unit, who was killed fighting Hezbollah terrorists in southern Lebanon last night.

Just three weeks ago, 600 of us celebrated as Benjy and his long-time girlfriend, Ayala Berger, finally got married after going together for many years. The pure joy of the two families who had become good friends over the long on-off courtship, was palpable. Ayala, accompanied by her happy parents and radiant in her beautiful wedding dress, walked down the path toward Benjy, who waited for her under the chupa with his trademark shy smile.

Today, in the military cemetery of his home town of Raanana, Ayala walked toward Benjy again. This time, however, she was supported by Benjy's younger brother Shimon and her father, her young face contorted in pain and grief. Instead of approaching the chupa, as she did three short weeks ago, she drew close to the simple wooden coffin draped with an Israeli flag that held the remains of her new husband.

Benjy and Ayala's story is a story of the ingathering of the exiles. Ayala's family immigrated from Argentina around the same time as the Hillmans made aliya from England, when Benjy was four years old.

Benjy's mother, Judy, and I were best friends from the time we met when we were 11 years old. We were part of a small group of girls who sat in Kingsbury shul together during the late 1960s, giggling over the boys, or complaining about our old-fashioned parents. We went to the same youth movement events and parties, and shared the agonies of teenage dating. We spent countless sleepovers in each other's homes, talking most of the night as we dreamed of our futures.

Even though we belonged to a religious Zionist youth movement, I honestly don't remember if we ever seriously discussed living in Israel. Those decisions came later.

At Benjy's wedding a few weeks ago, we huddled with Michelle, a third member of our Kingsbury group, and marveled at the fact that here we all were, almost 40 years later, with all of our kids (except for one of mine) here in Israel, celebrating each other's simchas. We danced like mad at the joy of our continuing connection.Today, just before the funeral, we all fell upon each other in grief, as we tried to assimilate the grim reality.

Thousands turned out to escort Benjy on his last journey. His coffin arrived at the cemetery in an olive green army vehicle. An honor guard of soldiers from his beloved Egoz brigade led the way to his grave as hundreds of his friends hugged each other and wiped their eyes.

The eulogies were exquisitely painful. Each one reflected on Benjy's modest but strong character and his strong Zionist convictions. Judy winced as one of the rabbis read a paragraph of a letter Benjy had written four years ago to the parents of his friend, Ari Weiss, z"tl, who was killed fighting terrorists. Benjy wrote that Ari had died as a hero and would always be remembered that way.

Benjy's father, Danny, thanked Benjy for bringing so much honor to the family. Benjy's best friend told Ayala and the Hillmans that he and his friends would make sure they would never be alone, and an Egoz commander told them that they would always be part of the Egoz family.

During the hour-long funeral service, the honor guard stood motionless at attention in the mid-day sun. Every ten minutes or so, their commander came up behind each one of them with a squeeze of the shoulder, a whispered word of concern, offering a bottle of water.

It took hours for the huge crowd to pass in front of Benjy's grave and offer their condolences to Benjy's family.

As we enter this Shabbat, the second of the war, think of Benjy and Ayala when you sing the "Bo-ee Kallah" verse of the Lecha Dodi prayer that welcomes the Shabbat bride.

And keep in mind all our soldiers who are on the front lines of the fight against terror as they defend the people of Israel.

Shabbat Shalom from Jerusalem

Judy Lash Balint is an award-winner investigative journalist and author of "Jerusalem Diaries: In Tense Times" (Gefen). It is available for purchase from www.israelbooks.com

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Posted by Daily Alert, July 21, 2006.

This was written by Dan Izenberg and it appeared in today's Jerusalem Post (www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1153291962114&pagename= JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

See also:

"Canadians Donate Air Conditioners to Shelters" by Haviv Rettig
(www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1153291962015&pagename= JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

and "Israelis Offer a Helping Hand" by Ruth Eglash
(www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1153291950771&pagename= JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

and "Arab and Jewish Children Share a Haifa Bomb Shelter" by David Parsons
(www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid= 1153291961961&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

Shlomo Buhbut, the mayor of Ma'alot-Tarshiha, is already looking beyond the current fighting in northern Israel to the day after the guns go silent.

Meanwhile, he and his council have been preparing for the current emergency for so long, that they seem to know what to do almost by rote.

On Wednesday, the morning after the town was hit by three Katyusha rockets, town employees were out mowing the beautifully maintained lawns and palm-lined boulevard leading into the town.

The town hall is closed to the public except for the welfare department, which is open to deal with the special problems that the emergency situation has created for the elderly and other residents who find it difficult to fend for themselves.

But the most intensive activity takes place in the building's bomb shelter, where the mayor has set up his quarters along with the security staff that is responsible for handling the emergency. Altogether, about 150 people are involved in looking after the needs of the population during these times.

Ma'alot-Tarshiha has a population of 23,000, including 4,000 Arabs. Unlike most of the Jewish communities in the North, almost no one has left town so far, including the children.

"The people here are experienced in war," said Buhbut's spokeswoman, Isfahan Bahaloul. "It is not part of their experience to run away. There is solidarity here. It's a small community and the families are very tied to the place."

In fact, only now, a week after the fighting started, have town

authorities developed an initiative to send the children out of town for a few days for rest and recuperation.

Buhbut pointed to a computer screen which contained data on each of the bomb shelters in the town: 78 public shelters, and 110 private shelters located in residential buildings. Town authorities know what is happening at all times in each one. The town is divided into quarters and a local authority employee is responsible for each one. These days, their main job is to make sure the shelters are in order at all times.

For the moment, the shelters are the main point of reference. Women soldiers have been assigned to each one to keep the children busy. The town received a shipment of toys from businessman Nohi Dankner and distributed them to the shelters. Tnuva has supplied the town with milk and chocolate drinks, which are also delivered straight to the shelters.

Buhbut said he was also buoyed by the support that northern residents are receiving from Israelis in Tel Aviv and other parts of the country which have not directly suffered from the fighting. "We know that even when Tel Avivians sip coffee in their coffee shops, they are thinking of us," he said.

Buhbut may be satisfied with the state of affairs in Ma'alot-Tarshiha for the time being, but he is already in a fighting mood regarding the future.

Government ministers and senior officials had come to Ma'alot-Tarshiha, asked what they can to do help and made promises, he said. But he added that he did not intend to sit by and wait for the promises to be fulfilled.

"We in the north are like a bereaved family," said Bahaloul. "Right now, everyone comes to visit us and tell us how much they love us. But afterwards, we are all alone again."

One of the first things that Buhbut did after the fighting started was to resurrect the Forum of Communities of the Confrontation Line. The forum is composed of 12 Jewish, Arab and Druse local authorities and several regional councils. They include Kiryat Shmona, Nahariya, Ma'alot-Tarshiha, Khorfeish, Kfar Vradim, Me'ilya, Mizra, Fassuta, Shlomi, Metulla, Gush Halav (Jish), and Peki'in and the regional councils of Merom Hagalil, Mevo'ot Hermon, Ma'aleh Yosef, Mate Asher and Galil Elyon.

In the days before the "false peace" that began with the withdrawal of IDF forces from southern Lebanon in 2000, the forum received special benefits including grants and city tax deductions to attract outside investors, special Interior Ministry grants, and income tax reductions. After the withdrawal, many of the benefits were withdrawn and the forum itself more or less disbanded.

But the fighting has revived it with a vengeance, and Buhbut, who is its chairman, declares publicly that he intends to exploit the new situation for all its worth. The members of the forum convened in Nahariya earlier this week and issued a set of demands including that the government declare a state of emergency from the first day of the fighting, that the government establish a civilian staff headquarters in the Prime Minister's Office to cut through red tape and solve the communities' immediate problems (a step which has already been done), that the government set up summer camps for the children of the North so that they can get away from the tensions for a few days, and that the Interior Ministry provide funding to the local authorities for the special expenses incurred by the state of emergency.

In the longer run, the forum is demanding that the benefits that were removed after 2000 be restored.

One new problem that the forum faces is that Hizbullah has expanded the confrontation line far beyond the original range of 10 kilometers from the Lebanese border, thanks to its arsenal of Syrian and Iranian-supplied rockets and missiles. But this does not faze Buhbut.

The problems of the small, northern settlements are not the same as those of larger cities such as Haifa, Tiberias and Karmiel, he argues. Haifa, for example, is in the center of the country and is wealthy and highly developed. The forum is meant to represent smaller and economically weaker communities close to the northern border. If anything, he said, he would add Safed, Rosh Pina, Hatzor and Yesod Hama'leh to the current forum list.

The Daily Alert is published by the Jewish Center for Public Affairs for the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Contact them to subscribe at daily-alert@dailyalert.org

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 21, 2006.

Next time when you go to the polls, remember who voted against the resolutions overwhelmingly favoring and supporting Israel.

All Members who are NOT listed below voted in favor of the bill.

Eight (8) Members of Congress Voted AGAINST H.R. 921

California: Peter Stark

Hawaii : Abercrombie Michigan: Conyers, Dingell, Kilpatrick

Texas : Paul Washington: McDermott West, Virginia: Rahall

Four (4) Members of Congress Voted "Present" >
California: Baraba Lee, Maxine Waters
Ohio : Kaptur, Kucinich

Ten (10) Members of Congress Did Not Vote

California: Loretta Sanchez

Florida : Davis

Georgia : McKinney, Westmoreland

Illinois : Evans

Iowa : Nussle

Kentucky : Northup

Nebraska : Fortenberry

Tennessee : Duncan

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Hillel Fendel, July 21, 2006.

The latest clash between hesder soldiers - who combine yeshiva studies with shortened, quality military service - and the army has ended with a victory for the former.

Hagit Rotenberg, writing for B'Sheva, reports that the issue revolved around a training course for combat medics, for which 20 hesder students signed up.

The soldiers, whose commitment to Torah values mandates practical fulfillment of the Biblical commandment to "keep your camp holy," noted several problems from the outset: The course was headed by a female officer who walked amongst them during training when they were partially dressed; the meals were served in mixed-gender; and the daily line-ups were held directly opposite the women's residences.

Some yeshiva soldiers resigned from the course from the outset, against their original plans and ambitions. Others refused to leave, but demanded a female-free course. The soldiers were backed up by the Union of Hesder Yeshivot, which similarly demanded a solution to all the problems, threatening that all the hesder-niks would leave if not.

Union director Eitan Ozeri told Rotenberg, "The army first tried to solve the problems 'from within,' but when they saw that that didn't work, they decided to include the yeshiva soldiers in a new course that will begin next week and which will not have these problems."

Ozeri's conclusion: "When we stand united in our demands, we succeed in receiving what we want from the army."

Hillel Fendel is senior news editor at Arutz-Shevah (www.IsraelNN.com).

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Posted by Ricky Lomey, July 21, 2006.
This was written by Zvi Aaron of Johannesburg.

I would like to thank YASMIN ALIBHAI-BROWN for her attempt to divide Jews who live outside of Israel from our brothers and sisters in the State of Israel.

She does this by lauding the self-hating Jews in the diaspora who spew such venom against Israel and her people, while supporting terror attacks against Israel's men, women and children.

YASMIN ALIBHAI-BROWN claims that "hardened Zionists are unmoved by photos of dead infants in Beirut, tearful young evacuees fleeing that wonderful city because "they" don`t feel pain and death like the rest of us. "

Rabid anti-Zionists, including the anti-Zionist Jews who Alibahi-Brown praises so, are completely unmoved by the mass murder of Jewish women and children in Israel by Arab racists, who want a Judenreihn Palestine, just like the Nazis wanted a Judenreihn Europe.

The rabidly anti-Zionist far-left ignores Israeli/Jewish suffering, and feels nothing for the thousands of Jews in Israel, mainly women and children, who have been massacred, by bomb, rocket, bullet and knife in the war of genocide against the Israeli people, known as the Intifada.

No feeling for the pregnant Jewish mother and her four terrified small daughters, executed one by one by Arafatian goons at Gaza.

No feeling for the five-year-old girl, Danielle Shefi, who was shot to death at point blank range by an Arab killer, while cowering under her parents' bed.

No feeling for the countless Jewish children murdered in the last six years of the so-called intifada and the last 80 years in Arab pogroms against Jews in the Land of Israel.

The meaning of Israel is clear. The Jew has experienced too much death, and a portion of the Jewish people decided that they would die quietly no more. So it is: and no argument, no clever political talk, no logic and no parading of right and wrong can change this fact. The Jews returned to Israel because it was their ancient land. From 1810 onwards Jews in the Land of Israel have been murdered by Arabs. The pious Jews of Safed, who would raise no hand in their own defence, had been robbed and murdered and burned out again and again by Arabs-as the Jews in Jerusalem and Tiberias had been robbed and slain and burned out. Bedouin Arabs passed through Israel at will-and robbed and killed Jews as a profitable thing. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Arab feudal lords in Israel organized pogroms precisely as the Czar had organized pogroms. The Land of Israel was a blighted and empty land until the Zionist Movement returned it to life.

In 1920, Jews where masscared in Jersualem and in 1921 in Jaffa. In 1929 the entire ages old Jewish community of Hebron was massacred and from 1936 to 1939, inspired and supported by Hitler's Nazi regime in Germany, pogroms spread across the Land of Israel, taking thousands of Jewish lives.

Of the population of the Arab states, more than a quarter are probabely made up of non-Arab minorities such as the Kurds, the Nilotic Black peoples of South Sudan, the Berbers of Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco, the Druze of Syria, the Christian Copts of Egypt, and the Maronites of Lebanon.

These minorities face discrimination, and in some cases, such as the South Sudanese and the Lebanese Maronites, have been subjected to horrific genocide by Moslem Arabs.

Why is it so unjust that a small section of the vast Arab population - those who call themselves 'Palestinians'- should live as a minority in Israel?

With regard to the ridiculous charge that Israel is a racist state, Israel is truly a nation of color. It has one of the most diverse populations in the world, including black Africans from Ethiopia, brown Africans and Asians from North Africa, Yemen, Egypt, Iraq and Morocco;Jews from Central Asia, Russia and the Caucuses; and families from Romania, Latin America and the former Yugoslavia.

If the Arabs and Moslems, and their international leftwing fellow travellers would accept Israel's right to exist in peace and security, and stop then there would be no war and no suffering on either side.

Israel's retaliation aginst Hamas and Hizbullah took place after months of shelling rockets into Israel, from Gaza and Lebanon, since the Israeli withdrawals.

Zvi Aaron

Contact Lomey Ricky at rickyl@iafrica.com

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Posted by Ellen W. Horowitz, July 21, 2006.

"I offer thanks to You, living and eternal King, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; with compassion abundant is Your faithfulness" -- (the prayer recited upon opening one's eyes in the morning).

I haven't written since last spring. Things seemed to get a little redundant.

I mean how many times and in how many ways can one utter the same warnings to a public already over-saturated with a deluge of information, and downright fatigued by a torrent of earthshaking events?

I felt that too few of us had the time to read the full story and thoughtfully reflect on the issues and their implications, and too many of us were simply not equipped to rise to the challenge of seriously questioning the information being thrown at us by our leaders and by the mainstream media.

The challenge for me was to find another creative way to get a rather dumbed-down and tired public to wake-up, think, and feel again. And so I literally returned to the drawing board and began caricaturing again - with the hope that a few basic, simple black and white lines would help to clarify some rather complex issues and expose some very basic truths (and maybe get a laugh in there somewhere, too).

But things just aren't that funny right now, and I feel the need to write again.

So let's make a deal. I won't say I told you so and harp too long on the disasters of the Oslo Accords, the withdrawal from Lebanon and the Disengagement plan; if you promise not to tell me that you didn't know or that you didnt see it coming. And please dont tell me that I was right, because you have no idea how much I, and others like me, wanted to be wrong.

For more than a week I've been listening to the sounds of rockets exploding in the distance, and praying that they stay distant.

I utter my morning prayer with a newfound gratitude and I thank G-d for allowing my family to sleep soundly through another night.

My eldest son is with his unit on the Northern border - a unit which has suffered casualties. He has less than a year left of service in the IDF, and I pray that G-d will let him return whole, safe, and well so that he can stand in full strength under the chupah next month. And I pray that all of his very strong and determined comrades and friends will be in full attendance at that simcha.

I fluctuate between moments of acute anxiety and remarkable tranquility - which reflect the very psalms which I occasionally pick up to read throughout the day. I suppose that's how prayer works. Its the tears and distress which arouse the prayers which ultimately lead to comfort (and redemption).

I think about all the tears which fell a year ago and the profundity of that weeping.

You see, it wasn't about homes and hothouses in Gush Katif. It was about a terrible and impossible choice that had to be made. A choice between fighting our brothers and their deluded plans, and risking a possible civil war; or "cooperating" with the authorities - with the full knowledge of the disastrous security scenario which awaited all of us.

There's a terrible cost which comes with a lack of foresight and lack of accountabity on the part of leaders, but the public pays an equally steep price for being passive, uncaring and unaware.

I'm not looking for mass spiritual teshuva from our leaders, but I will settle for some thoughtful penitence on an intellectual level. Maybe some of the experts in their ivory towers will have enough of an inkling of doubt and fear in their guts as to give rise to the questions: What have we done? and What didn't we do?

I would hope that at a time like this, every Jew could take the time required to look to the heavens, as well as to do an obligatory search and realignment of their hearts and heads.

Lo and behold, based on recent Knesset speeches and military briefings, it does appear that the word G-d and words of scripture are emanating from our leader's lips - whether they be on the ground, in the air, or at sea.

I guess it's true that there are no atheists in foxholes, in bomb shelters, on the heights, in the valleys, on the coastline, or in the Knesset at this time.

I hope that counts for something.

With hopes and prayers for a peaceful and comforting Shabbat for all of Am Yisrael. May our sons, husbands and fathers be granted strength and success in the field.

Ellen W. Horowitz is the author of the The Oslo Years: a mother's journal. The book is available through retailers listed at http://osloyears.com/retail.htm Contact her at ellenwrite@bezeqint.net

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Posted by Mrla 26, July 21, 2006.
This article was written by Diana West.

A thought-provoking sideshow to Israel's war on Hezbollah -- and what a precious gift Israel would bestow on the Free World by destroying the Hezbollah mini-state -- is the effort to extract "foreign nationals" from Lebanon, some of whom have had their summer vacations in Hezbollah strongholds interrupted by war.

Who are these people now clamoring by the thousands for international rescue? Press reports label many of them "dual nationals." Some, despite their British, Swiss, American or French passports, make Lebanon their home. I was quite startled to hear, in an online audio report posted by the Daily Telegraph, that British passport-holders evacuated to Cyprus were undergoing "Home Office screening" to determine whether they "might constitute a threat." The report reasoned that this made sense "because obviously we're talking about a large number of people who have lived in the Middle East most of their lives."

This presents a bizarre spectacle: Britain's navy re-patriating what you might call extreme expatriates who potentially pose a "threat" to Britain as a partner in the so-called war on terror. This makes the following headline from the Guardian all the more inapt: "Britain's biggest sea evacuation since Dunkirk." As I recall, none of the 300,000 Dunkirk evacuees required a security screening before returning home.

In this wide-open question of loyalties we may see the expanding emptiness of the modern nation-state, where basic identification with the nation itself is no longer at the core of citizenship. And that includes the United States, where, for example, a good stretch of Main Street follows the Israeli war on Hezbollah via Al Jazeera -- at least Main Street in Dearborn, Mich., which writer Debbie Schlussel has described as "the heart of Islamic America, and especially Shia Islam America."

As the New York Times reported from Dearborn, "For miles along West Warren -- in hair salons, restaurants and meat markets -- shopkeepers and their relatively few customers stared at televisions tuned in to Al Jazeera." Incidentally, there were "relatively few" customers out and about only because, as one baker knew, "most of his regular customers were home watching [Al Jazeera], just as they had all day, every day," since Israel's offensive began.

Why does this matter? Al Jazeera, of course, is the relentlessly anti-American, anti-Israeli, jihad-boosting "news" network. To find TVs in the heartland tuned in to this station today is roughly akin to coming across an American town, circa 1942, tuned in to Axis propagandists Tokyo Rose and Lord Haw Haw.

But this isn't, as they say, your father's heartland. Hezbollah itself is popular in Dearborn, which can fill a banquet hall to celebrate "Lebanon Liberation Day" -- the day Hezbollah claims as victory when Israeli forces withdrew in 2000. Osama Siblani, the publisher of Dearborn's Arab American News, considers members of Hezbollah -- along with Hamas and other jihadist groups -- freedom fighters. And, as Mr. Siblani tells it to the Detroit News, he's not alone: "If morally supporting Hizbollah or associating with [Hezbollah spiritual leader Muhammad Hussein] Fadlallah is a crime, 'there is not going to be enough buses to haul the people out and take them to jail.'"

Mr. Siblani was speaking before the Israeli offensive began. But not before the 1983 Hezbollah bombings in Beirut, Lebanon, which killed 241 U.S. servicemen, 63 U.S. Embassy personnel and 58 French paratroopers. And not before the 1984 Hezbollah torture-murder of CIA station chief William Buckley in Lebanon. And not before the 1985 Hezbollah hijacking of TWA Flight 847 and the torture-murder of Navy diver Robert Stethem. And not before the 1988 Hezbollah torture-murder of Lt. Col. William Higgins. And not before the Hezbollah bombings of the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992, killing 29; the Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires in 1994, killing 96; or the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia in 1996, killing 19 U.S. servicemen.

American sympathy for Hezbollah profanes the American dead. In our wide-open society, however, such allegiance isn't considered beyond the pale. But it should be. And it could be. I have long argued that the "war on terror" is an amorphous term -- sacrificing clarity for fuzzy political correctness. What if we, as a nation, belatedly declared war on specific jihadist groups -- al Qaeda and Hezbollah and other organizations dedicated to our destruction? This would have the tonic effect of clarifying not only our enemies' identity, but our own.

We can't fight if we don't know who we're fighting. We can't win if we don't know who we are.

Contact Mrla 26 at mrla26@aol.com

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Posted by Richard H. Shulman, July 21, 2006.

The Times seeks out tales of woe by Arabs suffering or allegedly suffering from Israeli attacks. It rarely features human interest stories about Israelis suffering from Arab attacks. July 7 and 10 had examples of this bias.

Arabs are known to be unreliable and indoctrinated. How could they be expected to tell inconvenient truths in front of the Arab handler and cameraman, dependent upon totalitarian P.A. goodwill? Nevertheless, reporters seemed to accept interviewees' statements without verification.

The Arabs accuse Israel of plotting control. One said that peace doesn't come from violence. But the Arab goal is violence, not peace. The journalist fails to show that. Leaving incorrect impressions unchallenged is deceptive. If done routinely, as the Times does, it is deceitful.

There were no interviews of Israelis to refute those canards. Unless readers have independent sources and devote themselves to remembering and analyzing the situation, instead of relying upon the newspaper, they will be misled against Israel.

Journalists' questions of Arabs venting emotion usually are not challenging. The best was asking one whether he understood that Israeli parents feel the same. (Why didn't the reporter interview some Israelis?) Yes, but he called the Arab fight self-defense. That is false. The IDF had pulled out of Gaza, but the Arabs continued fighting. That is not self-defense. The NY Times fails to indicate that. It is full of false impressions.


Youssif Ibrahim's NY Sun columns valiantly encourage the West against jihad and encourage the Arabs to end it. He hopes the US will let Israel defeat the jihadists threatening Israel and the US. In passing, however, he undermines Israel's reputation. That is because he apparently doesn't know enough about Israel.

Example 1, on 6/30: "American has never failed to support Israel politically and militarily." Mr. Ibrahim looks old enough to remember the US halting Israeli military victories; insistence upon its absorbing the first blow instead of pre-empting it; breaking guarantees, arming Israel's Arab enemies; voting for some unfair UNO censure of Israel; insistence that Israel withdraw from a key part of its homeland, strategic depth, secure borders, and vital war supply; denouncing Israeli counter-attacks rather than Arab aggression; refusal to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem; US subsidy of subversive elements; interference in Israeli elections; and failure to acknowledge what Israel does for the US. One could write a book about US betrayal of Israel.

Example 2: "We have rarely asked our Israeli friends to do us a favor." We could write another book about how Israel benefits the US. To name just a few examples, Israel provided air cover, intelligence, superior equipment, and improvements in US weaponry for US military operations. By destroying Sadam's first nuclear reactor, Israel saved innumerable US lives in Gulf War I. It informed the US about Soviet weapons. It spared a US invasion to save Jordan. It diverted Nasser from a drive towards Saudi oil fields.


"July 6th 2006


IDF aerial attack on a cell in the northern Gaza Strip

Tonight, July 5 th 2006, the IDF carried out an aerial attack against a cell planting explosive devices." (IMRA, 6/6).

What a bare bones announcement! It does not mention results. What good is it? Why does the IDF bother? Does the IDF or government think it is keeping people informed by such uninformative announcements? Does it think the people haven't learned yet that most of IDF attacks, though not this kind, bear no results, because they are on empty buildings and fields?


The Soviets attempted to turn the Mideast states into satellites. The USSR armed the Arabs, nurtured terrorists, approved of many terrorist missions against Americans and Israelis, and planted many agents. It backed losers but succeeded in disseminating suspicion of the West and especially of Israel.

The Soviets not only coveted regional influence, they hated Jews the same as insanely and wantonly as did the Czars (The World Was Going Our Way: The KGB and the Battle for the Third World by Christopher Andrew and Vasili Mitrokhin New York: Basic Books, 2005. 677 pp. $29.95, reviewed by Barry Rubin, MEF News, 7/11).


Israel destroys infrastructure in Gaza that it thinks might be used for war, but ships in hundreds of tons of food and fuel, and offers to open more gates for produce. The P.A. refuses more gates, but complains that Israel blocks entry of food (IMRA, 7/12). The terrorists must share in the supplies.

This is reminiscent of Saddam's selling the food purchased under the UNO's Oil-For-Food program, and then accusing the US of starving his country's children. The world believed him.


The IDF tried for a second time to assassinate terrorist leader Mohammed Dief. He was wounded, but escaped with his life. IMRA believes that the problem is that Israel again used too light a bomb. It uses light bombs to minimize collateral casualties. It is afraid of international protest if the operation wounded many civilians. Nevertheless, the government boasts that it has a free hand in the war (IMRA, 7/12). I think that the international standards are ridiculous and perhaps are an excuse for anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism.


Neo-conservatives are blamed for problems in Iraq and many other foreign policy problems. After making war, the President disregarded their advice. Here is the record:

1. Neo-conservatives supported Chalabi to head the Iraq regime; the US defamed him (and got ineffective, corrupt, and pro-Islamist regimes).

2. Neo-conservatives wanted the provisional Iraqi regime to start right away; the US held onto power for a long time (and alienated Iraqis).

3. Neo-conservatives based military success on following up with Iran, Syria, and S. Arabia; Bush didn't. (Those countries supported insurgents. Our momentum ceased).

4. Neo-conservatives wanted the US to support regime-change in Iran via native democrats; the State Dept. didn't do it. (Now we are running out of time.)

5. Neo-conservatives wanted to help refugees escape from N. Korea, but Bush wastes time negotiating with that country.

6. Neo-conservatives wanted the US to work with non-Arafat Palestinian Arab leaders, but Bush supported Abbas, leading to Hamas and worse war.

7. Neo-conservatives proposed ignoring the UNO, but the US let itself get bogged down there (NY Sun, 7/11, Ed.).

Bush ought to try neo-conservative foreign policy. His own policy is not working.

The well-known neo-conservatives have left the Bush administration. That has not ended the popular misconception that they run it. Having identified his policies with them, people continue the convenient label and condemnation of his policies as neo-conservative. Antisemites continue that label, too, because since a few Jews were known as neo-conservatives, they pretend that the Jews control the movement and that they do so in behalf of the Jewish people, which they don't do. Funneling money to Abbas does not help the Jewish people or any other people.


The EU complained that Israel uses disproportionate force. Israeli PM Olmert replied that P.A. rockets terrorize tens of thousands of Israelis. "When was the last time that the EU condemned this shooting and suggested effective measures to stop it?" "I can imagine that some of those countries that preach to us would have done a lot more, in a more brutal and vicious and cruel way against civilian populations, than what we did."

Remarking about the P.A. and Israel, Steven Gutkin of Associated Press: "Neither expressed any willingness to compromise, boding poorly for a quick end to Israel's 12-day-old incursion into the Gaza strip that has killed nearly 60 Palestinian Arabs (NY Sun 7/11, p.7). Why should Israel compromise with kidnappers, thereby rewarding them? War is not won by compromise.


The government of Israel declared that it would not negotiate for the release of its soldier nor would it exchange prisoners for him. Officials added that they had intended to release prisoners anyway, and would do so after the captured soldier were released. But they would release them to moderates, so extremists could not take credit for securing the prisoner release.

Isn't that negotiating a prisoner exchange?

The notion that PLO terrorists are moderate, though they commit the same kinds of war crimes as Hamas, is a media-invented rationalization and face-saver for trucking with terrorists and for pretending one is not appeasement-minded.

If terrorists are released to the PLO, Hamas would assert that its capture of an Israeli soldier got them released. Hamas would be right, just as they are about their having gotten the Israelis out of Gaza, just as Hizbullah got the Israelis out of southern Lebanon.

Why should Israel release terrorists ever? Why shouldn't it execute all found guilty and who had resisted capture? Alternately, why not execute 100 per day, until the Israeli soldier were released? Doing so would save many Israeli lives that the release of prisoners costs. It would daunt terrorists, who are confident of eventual release.


An Israeli report referred to rockets falling on the "home front." In civilized society, home front meant industrial, agricultural, and propaganda efforts in behalf of a war effort, but not actual fighting. The Arabs have changed that. They conduct the bulk of their fighting from civilian areas against civilian areas.

The supposedly civilized parts of the world should condemn the Arabs for that. It doesn't. The world condemns Israel for fighting too hard, though I condemn Israel for not fighting hard enough. The Europeans fail to condemn the Iraqi insurgents, but vent their spleen upon the US, which tries to spare civilians.

Terrorists take advantaged of warped ethics to get their enemies' response inhibited.


John Stossel asserts that people own their own bodies, and should be free to sell their kidney (NY Sun, 7/13, Op.-Ed.)

He did not explain why a law was passed to outlaw such sales. How is a reader to make up his Mind without seeing the other side? This one-sidedness by exclusion is common among commentators. The best commentators are the ones who put the opposing side fairly, before making their own case.


It was foreseen and foretold that Iran would back up Hamas by having Hizbullah raid Israel. The government of Israel paid no heed. It let Hizbullah re-fortify the border posts that Israel had destroyed not long ago. A wiser government would have blasted the rebuilt forts when Hizbullah men reoccupied them.


Most of the world, criticizes Israel for inflicting casualties upon Arab civilians during warfare. We've explained that: Israel is within its international rights, it takes too many risks in limiting those casualties. The terrorists commit the war crime by fighting among civilians. Arab civilians commit it by serving as human shields for terrorists.

The rest of the world condones those Arab war crimes. It should tell them to stop complaining about Israeli-inflicted casualties upon civilians, when the terrorists jeopardize those civilians by hiding among them and the civilians jeopardize themselves by acting as shields. The rest of the world does not call the terrorists' courage into question over their hiding among civilians. This "rest of the world" includes Western democracies. What a lapse of ethics!


(1) The Republican candidate for Attorney-General of New York, Jeanine Pirro, said that Israel has a right to secure borders. (2) About securing US borders, Sen. Vitter (GOP, Louisiana), said we should "focus on the true priority that we face in the war on terror.'" "Stripping small amounts of prescription drugs from the hands of seniors... that should not be a priority.'" (Lara Jakes Jordan, NY Sun, 7/12, p.4.)

It is easy to make a pleasing statement about Israel's right to secure borders, when one doesn't define "secure borders." The US Chiefs of Staff defined them as including within Israel about 90% of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. It gave persuasive reasons. Now along come politicians who make vague statements instead of referring to military issues, which is what border security is about. They seem to accept any extent of Israeli withdrawal as providing secure borders. Israel's withdrawals from Gaza and even from Lebanon demonstrate the insecurity of major withdrawal. Let the Arabs withdraw, and Israel would have security.

The economics of prescription drugs is complex. I have no position on it. But the logic of the Senator is faulty. It also is typical. He suggests not dealing with one issue, because another is more important. That is not a realistic position for Congress.

Congress takes up many issues, large and small. It has separate committees, so it can deal with several issues at-a-time. There may be some commonality in the two issues of terrorism and medicine, in that both may come through the borders. Indeed, Congress is struggling with border security and immigration.

The Senator probably has other reasons for prohibiting Canadian pharmacies from selling prescriptions to Americans. Let him make his case with them, not grasp at illogic.


The NY Times reports about the Arab-Israel conflict mostly by quoting the ignorant, foolish, or deceitful statements of people with whom the "Times" agrees, and by injecting as background the judgments of the anti-Zionist publishers. Here are five examples from a single article (7/11, A8).

1. Khaled Meshal, head of Hamas, criticized the West for emphasizing the one Israeli soldier kidnapped while Israel was holding thousands of Arab prisoners. His complaint is non-specific. Non-specificity evades the issue while leaving a sour impression. That is a mark of propaganda.

One truth Hamas evaded is that the Arabs are held captive for criminality. The Israeli soldier had done nothing wrong, and the P.A. had signed agreements not to attack. The P.A. violated its agreements. The "Times," however, does not refer to Arab violations.

2. Meshal also made a non-specific accusation, "Israel is practicing state terrorism and is in violation of international law." Perhaps he is not specific, because if he were, his accusation would be seen as the defamation it is. For a terrorist who, by definition does not fight according to the international rules of war and who commits war crimes, his accusation is hypocritical. The "Times" leaves fascist defamation unchallenged.

3. Israeli leaders are cited as believing that "a tough military response" would discourage the Arabs from further attacks on Israeli cities and soldiers. There should be a caveat that Israel usually fights mildly, concentrating on avoiding civilian casualties. It lets the Arabs soon resume their military buildup, as the Gaza withdrawal showed.

The Times accepts the Israeli leaders' false posturing, intended for domestic consumption, as genuine. That misleads readers, just as the Israeli leaders are misleading their people. Of course, this one time, the incursion may be tough; my comment is a general one.

4. As if there were balance in the world, journalist Greg Myre noted that the EU regularly asked the terrorists not to fire rockets into Israel. Why did he not also note that the EU consistently subsidizes the P.A. while knowing what it does and that what it does has popular support? The EU may ask the terrorists, but the request is not serious (no penalty behind it and mild censure in it). It is lip service. Lip service should be compared with the record, to give readers a gauge of sincerity.

5. PM Olmert said, "The people of Gaza deserve to have a different quality of life, and what we wanted was a quiet and peaceful border." "But there hasn't been a day of rest for the people inside Israel."

The people of Gaza are uncivilized, violent bigots who support terrorism. They could have made peace but won't. They deserve nothing.

Why does the Prime Minister think they deserve anything? He is trying to differentiate the terrorist people from the terrorist activists. It is a false distinction. The Arabs collectively practice total war, killing all whom they can, but the world demands that Israel take even more care than it does not to kill anyone unarmed at the time.


The US has taught those rogue states a lesson. Lesson: if they make a multilateral agreement, they won't be bothered until their violations are detected. Then they can ask for a bribe to return to the agreement. They'd cheat, again. The very food that the US sent to N. Korea was used for its military, not starving civilians. Iran used the increased income from trading with Europe, trade that resulted from critical dialogue, to invest in its military (with which it now threatens Europe - not just menaces, but threatens).

The rogue states don't answer definitively foreign demands to stop nuclear weapons programs, they counter-demand larger bribes. The NY Times calls the accepted offers a diplomatic success. They are a failure. They cost us a lot, but gain no security, because the rogue states cheat. That is what makes them rogues. Appeasement fails.

Iran started its nuclear program before the Iraq war. Can't blame the program on the Bush administration. At least, can't fairly blame Bush (Michael Rubin, MEF News, 7/6).


When the Prime Minister of Israel made his visit to a bombarded town in Israel a military secret, he was indicating that having moved his army outside of Gaza, he couldn't protect Israel from terrorists in Gaza. His policy of abandonment rendered Israel less secure.

The government denies that this means the withdrawal from Gaza was a failure. How so? Its answer: it hadn't withdrawn to improve security but to improve the demographic balance and democracy.

The demographic argument was based on statistics that its authors now admit were highly exaggerated. Besides, some of the abandoned areas abutted Israel, so their abandonment did not separate Israelis from Arabs.

As for democracy, the government is promulgating several measures to restrict freedom of speech and democratic elections. The American philosophy is that whatever people want to do is legal, unless the government has a compelling reason to forbid it. Israel's leftist philosophy is that whatever people want to do is illegal, unless the government issues a permit for it. Thus the government proposes to ban polls three weeks before elections. It proposes to broaden the laws against "incitement" far beyond the American notion of incitement to violence to "polluting discourse." (Caroline Glick, IMRA, 7/7.)

The government's logic about security is faulty. Since the withdrawal depressed national security, even though security was not the reason for withdrawal, the withdrawal still must be considered a failure.

Actually, the withdrawal originally was proposed to improve security, until those grounds were discredited. That the government immediately found a series of other reasons indicates that it has a hidden reason that it is ashamed to admit. No wonder the government intends to go on to further withdrawals and further threats to national security!


An Arab Member of Knesset admitted that he advised the P.A. Arabs to kidnap Israeli soldiers. So far, he has not been punished for his treason.

The Left, as usual, is enraged by criticism of its failed policies. Example: people remark on the failure of withdrawal, proved by the kidnappings. They say, "I told you so."

The Left reacts by demanding that such critics be arrested for "incitement" (Prof. Steven Plaut, 7/9).

"Incitement" is criticism of the Left. The Right has the right to remain silent. They enjoy freedom of speechlessness.

The Arab MK denied advising kidnapping (IMRA, 7/9). Is this a misunderstanding? There are misunderstandings, but not as many as politicians claim.


The Director of Audio-Visual and Written Communication Institute in Santiago De Chile, Mrs. Fareeda Serhan Shilish, visited the "liberated" city of Quneitra.

"She toured the city and saw the devastation caused by the Israeli occupation forces shortly before withdrawing from the city (almost 40 years ago). Mrs. Shilish stressed standing by Syria's struggle to restore the occupied Golan Heights and all the occupied Arab territories and usurped rights." (IMRA, 7/9.)

She gives the impression of being an Arab with preconceived notions who believed Syria's false propaganda. Quneitra hardly was damaged by Israeli forces, but was damaged greatly by Syrian forces. Syria did not win it back. Rather, as part of the armistice, Israel withdrew from it.


The leading Iranian dissident, Ganji, refuses US funds. He thinks it would make the dissidents seem to be the foreign agents that the regime claims they are (NY Sun, 7/14, p.9).

I had criticized the US for under-funding the Iranian dissidents. Perhaps I was wrong.


"How high a price are we willing to pay in terms of turning a blind eye toward repression in Russia in exchange for using Mr. Putin's good offices for problems that aren't in our control - such as Lebanon, Iran, N. Korea, and the Hamas?" (Padma Desai, NY Sun, 7/14, Op.-Ed.).

What "good offices?" Putin is continuing the Cold War to undermine the West.


The Palestinian Center for Human Rights complained that Israeli forces opened "indiscriminate" fire and killed two members of the "resistance."

Sec.-General Annan called on both sides to stop endangering civilians (IMRA, 7/8).

In that instance, the IDF shot two terrorists and no civilians. That is more targeted than indiscriminate.

The Arabs should not complain about indiscriminate fire. Most of their fighting is indiscriminate. They launch rockets at cities, to hit whomever they can, usually civilians. They aim rifles and suicide bombers mostly at civilians. They falsely complain that Israel does what they do, without acknowledging that they do.

Before Israel responded to the Arab rocket barrage, Annan did not complain much about civilian casualties, when the only civilians endangered were Israeli. Neither did the Security Council take up the issue. They wait for the Israeli response. So much for UNO decency.


Journalist Steven Erlanger quoted Gerald M. Steinberg of Bar-Ilan U. that Israel must see to its security from Gaza and not depend on Egypt or the P.A. (Times, 7/13, A14). Of course.

The "Times" rarely quotes Jewish nationalists. It is like a man-bites-dog story. I welcome that not just because I agree with Mr. Steinberg and that his statement gives some balance and counters statements by appeasement-minded Israelis, but also because the nationalists usually assess events more realistically -- their predictions of the folly of appeasement get borne out.


An Israeli colonel explained that P.A. officials often falsely claimed to have low supplies of wheat, when Israel closed a gate that terrorists plan to attack. Israel offers to open another gate, and the P.A. refuses to use it, lest it end the basis for their complaint (Benny Avni, NY Sun, 7/12). The NY Times almost never has such a frank exposure of false Arab propaganda.


The Bush administration is conceding, as are the US courts, that terrorist prisoners have certain rights under the Geneva Convention (Mark Mazzetti and Kate Zernike, NY Times, 7/12, A1).

In that concession and in Bush's deference to European and UNO policies of diplomacy on Iran, N. Korea, etc., Administration policies are what the Democrats have been asking for. Nevertheless, Democrats hate Bush just as much. They begrudge him an inch.

Those policies don't work, but until they wreak havoc, Democrats don't realize their failure. Logical analysis is a lost art. The courts and he are wrong about the Convention. It states that it applies to regular armies that follow the rules of war. Terrorists do not.


Britain acted the way people usually do. Bombings in Britain were predicted, but the government did not prepare for them. Officials then denied the extent of the problem and professed shock that the recent attacks were by citizens raised in Britain.

After the attack, the Prime Minister proposed counter-terrorism measures. Those have been resisted by official bodies. They must be waiting for the next attack.

The Prime Minister did set up Muslim task forces to fight extremism. Who picked the task forces? The same officials who underestimated the threat. Members claimed that Blair and Bush were controlled by a sinister alliance of Jews and Freemasons, that the British media is controlled by Jews, and that Hamas and the Iraqi insurgents are just "resistance." (Those foreign Islamists are trying to take over, not "resisting.") They want Islamic separatism in schools and for women, government funding of Muslim propaganda, and a ban on relating terrorism and extremism to Islam. The failure to institute such proposals was said by a Labor legislator to disillusion British Muslims. Rather than take responsibility for Islamic terrorism, the Muslims blame Britain for it. Britain, too, blames everyone, such as the US, but not Muslims, for Islamic terrorism.

The Muslim sense of grievance is growing. A significant number want to live under Islamic, not British law. On the other hand, 65% admit they need to do more to integrate. Their leaders don't try. About half the Muslims live on welfare. Their third generation members are less educated than third generation Hindu and Sikhs.

Britain has a large fifth column and a larger, alienated minority (Daniel Johnson, NY Sun, 7/10, p.9). The minority feeds the fifth column, get it?

If Muslims heard of a terrorist plot, 5-18% would not help the police. About a fifth of young Muslims believe in suicide attacks on British soldiers, about 7% believe in attacking civilians, and about 37% believe in attacking Jews. Most identify not as British but as Muslim. Most want those who criticize Islam to be prosecuted.

The Muslim community nurtures Islamic exclusivity (Daniel Pipes, NY Sun, 7/11, p.7).

British or American upbringing, which is not intensive, means little to Muslims. They resist it, by maintaining their culture of intolerance. That is a key lesson the West needs to understand. Muslims should not be allowed separate schools, if allowed into a Western country at all. Their entry sets up a struggle for domination. They do not respect the country that took them in from the society they fled.

Appointing Islamists to fight extremism is counter-productive. Blair and Bush do not know that, and both hobnob with Islamists!


Jordan advises that violence does not solve problems and it implores the world to stop Israeli "aggression" against the P.A. It did not demand that the P.A. stop its aggression against Israel (IMRA, 7/6). The G8 resolution was one-sided, too.

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.

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Posted by Emanuel A. Winston, July 21, 2006.

It has always been the custom for the Jewish nation to rally around Israel's government in time of war and this time will be as before. Nevertheless, perhaps this time we shall learn the lesson we have always avoided. After 6 wars and continual terrorism - (the seventh is well on its way), The Lesson - is that Deterrence trumps Appeasement.

Olmert, Peretz, Peres - none of whom have the necessary experience of being generals in practice or the real instincts for protecting the Jewish nation - regrettably, they are playing a "learn-on-the-job" generals. Their weakness lies in no planning and commitments to restraint as ordered by the outside world - usually the United States.

The Past should have proven that pacification of a dedicated enemy not only does NOT stop real war but actually ACCELERATES its time table. Winning the hearts and minds of Muslims dedicated to Jihad (Holy war for Islam) is simply not possible, as America has discovered in Iraq.

The Present war has come too late - although it is enough of a show to possibly save the political fortunes of Olmert and the Kadima Party. With the exception of a handful of dedicated Leftists still living the dreams of the Oslo Accords since September 13, 1993. Most Israelis now understand what the cowardly retreat from Gush Katif/Gaza has proven to the Arab Muslims, namely that Israel suffers from a Lack of Creditable Deterrence. That Israel's once powerful deterrence has been carefully covered over by a pathological need to please the world, even at the cost of her own existence. This is called an existential threat to the continued life of the Jewish State of Israel.

We see Ehud Barak on CNN and FOX interviews shamelessly explaining his retreat from Lebanon in 2000 and his own role in allowing Hezb'Allah, with backing from Syria and Iran, to get a strong foothold in Lebanon. Hezb'Allah became the "State within a State" while the Israeli Leftist governments merely played the role of observers taking pride in their doctrine of "Restraint" imposed by America.

We hear John Bolton, America's Ambassador to the U.N., describe the Hezb'Allah and other terrorists as a cancer. We agree. If you don't surgically remove ALL the cancer, it will and has metastasized to grow again like a irrevocable evil to haunt us all in the near future - both in Israel, Lebanon, Europe and America. The metastasized cancer Jihadists have insinuated sleeper cells into all of the Free West. When the number of Muslims immigrating into Free Western countries reaches a "Critical Mass", it will assert itself and explode. When the Muslim children who are being taught to viciously hate and kill Jews and Christians of the West, from the tender age of three are photographed with explosive belts and glamorized, they will without a doubt, grow into murderous adults. Then the Cancer of Terrorism will not be stoppable.

Some note that many Arab Americans who are being boat and air-lifted out of Lebanon - free of charge on American tax-payers' money - are Hebz'Allah supporters. Are we importing our own cancer sleeper cells while we are closing the borders to other alien immigrants? We know that certain cities already have their own "Critical Mass", such as Dearborn, Michigan with 7000+ Muslims.

Olmert and his Kadimites, like the Appeasement-driven Osloids before him, have squandered any sense of Deterrence paid for by the thousands of dead soldiers who fought to save the nation. Think of the thousands of Jewish civilians who were attacked, merely because they were Jews and living in a land long before Mohammed was pursuing life-after-death through Jihad (Holy War for Islam).

These men, women and children who died for their nation would weep as they saw their weak leadership arm the enemy. The missiles that are now falling on Israel came from Iran, Syria, Egypt and other Muslim Arab countries as an unimpeded flow of death and catastrophic injuries without so much as a murmur from Israel's political leaders which goes well beyond Shame.

While the Jewish nation must once again gather herself to fight a common enemy, let us not forget those Quislings who acted as enablers for their enemies, while claiming patriotism. Here I refer to the political branch, the Leftist military commanders and a Court system of indescribable political corruption.

Israel's weak political leaders did nothing to stop the flow of arms to the self-declared Arab Muslim hostiles and thus itself became an active collaborator to a deadly enemy.

Olmert, as expected, fired off his mouth with threats that no one believes.

All we really know is that he is like a small dog on a short leash as "Restraint" became his feeble war cry.

As Olmert tries to convince the Israeli people that he is, indeed, a great general, his amateur political appointment of Amir Peretz as Chief of Defense was also holding forth on TV. Peretz was taking credit for the Israeli attacks on the Hamas Terrorists in Gaza and the Hezb'Allah Terrorists in Lebanon - ignoring the fact that it was he, Olmert and the Leftist establishment that made it all possible.

The history of Rabin, Peres, Beilin, Barak, Netanyahu, Sharon and now Olmert is painfully clear. They all gave up land, deterrence and ignored the growing army of the Palestinian Arab Muslims. They politicized the Army and Intelligence so their levels of capability fell to dangerous lows. They not only allowed the Terrorists to build infrastructure but overlooked and even enabled transfer of massive quantities of missiles, weapons, explosives, home-made Kassem Rockets, etc. that the Muslims Arab terrorists have accumulated. When a courageous officer went public and exposed what the government was doing, they were either dismissed or demoted.

When Israel's ship was hit by a Chinese supplied Silkworm missile of Iran, how is it that Israeli Intelligence had failed in such a critical area to warn the Navy to turn on their detection system to prevent such a missile hit. Why were they then surprised by the Russian Coronet missile which penetrated the armor of Israeli tanks? Perhaps it is because from Yitzhak Rabin onward, Israel's Intelligence Agencies were made "PC" (Politically Correct) and often 'slaved' to the needs and demands of foreign nations. The best and smartest were no longer selected for top leadership but, if you met the criteria of an obedient Leftist, you were higher on the list.

Reporting your own military Intelligence to others (even friends) who 'might' pass it on to their Arab Muslim friends who 'might' be Israel's enemies does NOT make for a very secure Intelligence Service.

Israel's military needs a vigorous cleaning out so the Politically Correct Leftist officers would not be present merely to advance their careers while actually subverting the safety of the nation. Actually, the Israeli Defense Forces are showing themselves to be superb during this week's attempt by Israel to defuse and neutralize the Muslim Arab Terrorist Forces facing her in the South and from the North. Israel has an excellent military force which could be even better if it were de-politicized.

However, listening to Israel's Minister of Defense Amir Peretz, who has NO active military experience, on TV braying about how "his" soldiers were providing home defense was embarrassing and disgusting. One can almost excuse his ignorance of military matters except, as a Labor Leftist, he was always an advocate of the Oslo Accords and their spawned plans to evacuate Gush Katif/Gaza, Judea and Samaria, the Jordan Valley, the Golan Heights and even the Jews' holy eternal capital city of Jerusalem - all to be surrendered to Hamas, Fatah, Hezb'Allah and all the other self-declared hostile adversaries who have been prodigiously armed by Syria, Iran and countries in the Free West.

On July 17th James Woolsey, former head of the American CIA, stated on FOX NEWS that to prevent further war, America should bomb Syria. Most have forgotten Syria's role as a safe harbor for 12 to 15 Muslim Arab terrorist organizations. Some have forgotten the numerous Nazis such as Alois Brunner who made their homes in Syria. The building in Beirut where 242 American Marines were killed by truck bomb organized by Syria. Some have forgotten Syria's friends and protectors in Washington who refused to retaliate against Syria for their brutal attack on American Marines.

Olmert, as a grasping politician, is unlikely to resign in shame, having failed his obligations to the office of Prime Minister, must therefore be driven from his office. He has long passed the threshold of being a clear and present danger to the nation. The people of this time must support the military but, when it is over, let a court hearing be held as was done after the Yom Kippur Intelligence failure that allowed so many Israeli soldiers to be killed and permitted the guilty to merely resign.

Let the entire Jewish nation show up in front of the PM's office and the useless Knesset demanding an immediate evacuation of those offices. Then immediately begin the trials for those who allowed and promoted the evacuation and destruction of Gush Katif in Gaza and the four communities in Northern Samaria. Also indict those who permitted and encouraged the flow of arms and explosives through the Gaza town of Rafah plus the tunnels dug under the border between Egypt and Israel - and by sea.

Olmert did nothing to prevent this dangerous buildup of the Global Terrorist Operations Base. He and his mentor the former PM Ariel Sharon gave away the ancient Israeli homeland and helped arm them. Israeli Intelligence, although crippled by Olmert and his political cabal, had reported on the tonnage of weaponry transported to the growing Terrorist Organizations.

Olmert did nothing and thus became an active collaborator to a deadly enemy.

Olmert, as expected, fired off his mouth with threats that no one believes.

All we really know is that he is like a small dog on a short leash as "Restraint" became his feeble war cry. Regrettably, the once renowned warrior, Ariel Sharon in his days of sanity, is no longer around to lead Israel in battle.

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@interaccess.com

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 21, 2006.

Stand strong with Israel...

This is about the photo album on the havoc in Lebanon that is presented on the sabbah.biz website:
http://sabbah.biz/mt/archives/2006/07/17/ photo-of-the-day-israeli-kids-sends-gifts-of-love-to-arab-kids/

Please be forewarned, some of the pictures are disturbing. Some of the pictures incorporated are from yesterday's A.N.S.W.E.R demonstration. And the associations between the photos are, propaganda-wise, masterful.

These pictures can make you forget that Hezbullah in Lebanon has been shelling Israel illegally. And the Lebanese government didn't stop them -- out of weakness or sympathy with Hezbullah. They can make you forget that Israel withdrew completely from Lebanon -- many say this was a stupid move, but she did -- and all it did was to embolden Hezbollah. Some people answered the propaganda. For example Adam said:

July 20th, 2006 at 5:14 am

I think everyone who is complaining that Israel's operations in south Lebanon, and south Beirut are disproportionate in the wake of Hizballah merely kidnapping 2 soldiers, seem to have overlooked a few details.

1) This is not the first time that Hizballah has tried this. The most recent attempts to abduct Israeli soldiers resulted in firefights that left dead and wounded on both sides. There was no "strong" Israeli response to this, and the world was content to stay silent, with the exception of street parties in Lebanon, Gaza and the West Bank.

2) When Hizballah took those 2 soldiers, they also killed another 4 soldiers during the same (unprovoked) attack, whom everyone seems to have conveniently forgotten about.

3) Missile attacks on Israels northern boarder, by Hizballah, have been going on constantly in many forms ever since Israel withdrew from Lebanon. They also preceeded Israels initial invasion to lebanon in the early 80's as I can bear witness to, since I was personally pinned down in a bomb shelter while visiting the North of Israel as a child in 1981. All this was BEFORE Israel launched the "peace for Gallilee" operation, and this is what inspired it.

Hizballah has made their own bed, and now they must lay in it. Everything that happens from now on, is a direct result of their own actions, choices, and extremism.

How many abducted soldiers constitute a motive for such an attack, according to the equasions of war? Where do you draw the line?

At least now, they will hopefully think twice before using their "host" country to launch another attack on Israel, and this may save many lives on both sides ultimately, and perhaps wake up the Lebanese to the fact that any independance they currently enjoy is an illusion created by Hizballah, and that they have no say in the actions taken in the name of their country, and this is a very dire situation for them to be in.

I am truly sorry to hear how many Lebanese have been killed and injured in this operation, however many of them allow Hizballah to use their homes as launch pads for surface to surface missiles, and this cannot be allowed.

I hope that one day, all this bad blood can be put behind us, and that Israel and Lebanon can live as "normal" neighbours, but this seems a long way off, especially as long as they carry the yoke of Hizballah on their shoulders. We have weakened Hizballah now, and scattered them. Now is the time for Lebanese to turn defeat into victory, and seize the oppertunity to turn the illusion of their independance into reality, if only someone with enough courage can stand up and sieze the opportunity.

And, when someone defended Hezbollah, saying "They were created when Israel invaded and occupied Southern Lebanon. They were exiled Palestinians." another person, Paul, wrote this:

Kimmy, I agree wholeheartedly with the general thrust of your message, however in the spirit of good old Noam (above) I am going to be a complete pedant and correct you on your history (sorry Kimmy!). Hizb'Allah's roots can be traced back to a section of the Revolutionary Guard of Iran, not Palestinian refugees who were represented by the PLO.

In June 1982 Syria allowed the Iranian government in Iran to send around 1,000 Pasdaran (members of the Revolutionary Guard) to the Beqaa Valley of eastern Lebanon, which was occupied by Syrian forces. This decision was made in the wake of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon earlier in the same month, and this is what formed the basis of the original Hizb'Allah.

From this point, things start to get very complicated and very horrific (even more so than now), so I will spare you the details! However, I will conclude by writing that the Hizb'Allah have never been a Palestinian (or Syrian) organisation and are no longer an Iranian organization, they are a Lebanese organisation from the Shia sector of Lebanese society whose struggle is VERY closely tied up with that of the Palestinians.

The Lebanese have nothing to gain but world pity to distract their mishandling of their own politics and welcoming Hezbollah to live among them. No excuse should be sufficient to believe that, with all the international help the Lebanese government received since Israel withdrew beyond the "blue line," they could not abide by UN Resolution 1559. If they could not, they should have invited international forces (perhaps even Israel) to help them to dismantle Hezbollah. Instead they let Hezbollah to deeply root among them, did not report the massive arms Hezbollah was acquiring and acted in an appeasing mode; yes appeasing a ruthless terror group all the way to allowing Hezbollah to participate in the present, "fragile" government.

Turning the other cheek is not a good idea. Perhaps the Lebanese government was [slightly] hopeful that once Hezbollah is strong enough, they would be able to win the war against Israel. However mistake was made -- perhaps a day too early for Hezbollah but for Israel [and the entire western world] benefit -- time will tell.

Having said that, before bombing hard, Israel dropped ONE (1) million flyers, mind you in Arabic, warning civilians to leave the area; no one made a move to leave! When USA, and for that matter any other army in the same war situation, are about to heavily bomb an area, NO flyers are dropped first. Under these circumstances the IDF is simply a saint. Perhaps the Lebanese were busy praying for Israel to lose; perhaps they were fully informed how dangerous Hezbollah is, thus the hope Israel loses.

So far, all Israel actions are FULLY abiding the international war rules of engagement laws. So far the Lebanese are at the wrong from A-to-Z and back.

Unlike the Lebanese, Israel does not show its suffering and misery. This is more the sort of picture you will see.

Israeli Artillery Crew In Southern Lebanon

You may ask why? So the Israeli spirit is not deflated. Israel cannot allow the spirit of attrition to begin. After all, it is fighting for its existence.

Many believe we need a more effective, a more emotional response to the war. After all, our soldiers are being killed and wounded, the civilians hit by the Lebanese rockets are being killed or seriously wounded.

For example, read this letter written by Ari Bussel -- it's an exchange with his friend Yael about the pictures.

Dear Friends,

There is the repeated question: WHY [and HOW] DO WE FAIL SO MISERABLY IN PUBLIC RELATIONS? This is not a CNN poll, this is what people see and are misled to believe; it depicts Israel in a grim light.


My friend Yael correctly points out--THIS IS WHERE OUR FIGHT IS! (I disagree - This is where some of our fight is!)

Ari Bussel,
Beverly Hills, CA
Proud to be a Jew

Original Message from Yael

Ari, let me be blunt: photos of the rally -- and ANY pro Israel rally in the US -- as well as ALL OF the photos of the "WarinHaifa" power point e-mail which is being sent out are completely useless in the face of photos like these: http://sabbah.biz/mt/archives/2006/07/17/ photo-of-the-day-israeli-kids-sends-gifts-of-love-to-arab-kids/

This is where your fight is....anything else is a waste of time.


My opinion?

We can spin and spin and spin -- but this is not the issue. Israel has been fighting terror for way too long. Here is the issue:

What is terror?

Have you ever taken the time to see what terror is synonymous with?

It is fear, horror, fright, panic, alarm, dread, and shock.

This is what Israel has been living under -- day in and day out -- since 1948, when it was first established.

Think! Would you like to live under terror?

Would you like America to live under terror?

Terror equals is Islamic fascism, totalitarianism, repression tyranny.

Would you like America to live under terror?

Would the free world like to live under terror?

Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by Sergio Tessa (HaDaR), July 21, 2006.

IF IT IS TRUE (I am not enlisted and do not have the "new" rules of engagement), it is about time!!! This was written by Aaron Lerner and comes from IMRA (imra@netvision.net.il).

IDF Spokesperson Announcement - July 20th, 2006

"As part of the IDF's operation to stop the Qassam rocket barrages against Israel, the IDF dropped leaflets addressing the Palestinian civilian population in the Gaza Strip. The leaflets are intended to warn the population not to stay in structures that are used for storing weaponry, before they are targeted by the IDF.

The IDF have yet to target these structures, since they are in civilian homes and are near densely populated areas. However, since the terrorist organizations are continuing to cynically use civilian population as human shields, using there homes to store weaponry and launching rockets at Israeli towns from populated areas, the IDF will attack these locations used by terrorists from now on."

Just four days ago, Defense Minister Amir Peretz declared during a visit to Haifa that Israel would not honor human shields protecting weapons stored in Lebanon. And while he left the impression that the rules would remain different in Gaza (in the same remarks Peretz, who is also the chairman of the Labor Party, said he was proud that in Gaza a soldier told him that he did not fire at a terrorist armed with a launcher because the terrorist was holding the hand of child), it was inevitable that once the false morality of respecting human shields was dropped in one front that it would be dropped everywhere.

For years Israelis have died as a result of the bizarre policy that empowered "civilians" to protect terrorists with their bodies.

Let's be clear: These aren't hostages being held by the terrorists. These are people who are fully aware of the situation and yet have decided to remain and shield the terrorists from Israeli attack.

This change in policy promises to make a significant impact on the battlefield in the challenging period we are now encountering as we find ourselves scrambling up the learning curve in a war against an enemy that has enjoyed over half a decade to prepare for this conflict without interference.

Yes, the IDF is suffering casualties as it clears out the heavily fortified Hezbollah weapons stores and bunkers just north of the Lebanese border. And while every loss is painful, the results are hardly akin to the "Charge of the Light Brigade".

This is not the first time that Israel has had to develop solutions to challenges on the fly and there is every reason to expect the IDF to find the right combination of technology and technique to address Hezbollah - especially now that the IDF can face this challenge without one hand tied behind its back by an immoral "morality".

Contact Sergio Tessa (HaDaR) at HaDaR-Israel@verizon.net

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Posted by David Singer, July 21, 2006.

Israel's belief that unilateral withdrawal from Lebanon and Gaza would end Arab intransigence and bring about a resolution of the Arab-Israel conflict has turned out to be an illusion.

Instead it has opened up an abyss, which threatens to swallow up Lebanon and Gaza in its wake and set back the development of their societies and economies by at least 20 years. Syria is struggling to cope with hundreds of thousands of Lebanese Shiites seeking refuge as Israel continues its' determined assault to end Hezbollah's reign of terror in Lebanon.

Emboldened by what was perceived as Israeli weakness and exhaustion, Hezbollah and Hamas quickly asserted their authority within the areas vacated by Israel, claiming this was the first step in the ultimate destruction of the Jewish State.

The Governments of Lebanon and Gaza chose to tolerate rather than confront and root out these terrorist entities.

Both Governments were strongly supported by their civilian populations.

In Lebanon, Hezbollah openly held court in Beirut. Its headquarters were well known to Lebanese authorities and the media had no trouble in locating their leaders for frequent interviews as they took every opportunity to applaud the targeted murder of hundreds of Israeli citizens and foreign nationals.

They lived openly within Lebanese society and were elected to Government and held cabinet portfolios. This could not have happened without popular support.

Large shipments of missiles and weaponry were routinely unloaded at Lebanese ports in full view of customs, military and police authorities and transhipped through Lebanon to launching sites and military depots in South Lebanon for ultimate use against Israel.

In Gaza frequent demonstrations by tens of thousands of men, women and children marching behind hooded and well armed terrorists burning Israeli and American flags and effigies of Sharon and Bush, clearly indicated Hamas was held in awe, not disgust, by the civilian population among whom was hidden the military stockpile of rockets and explosives.

Hamas was elected to power in Gaza by the overwhelming majority of Gazans whilst Hezbollah established an autonomous State within a State in Lebanon, both clearly expressing their continuing refusal to recognise the sovereign existence of Israel.

Hezbollah leader Nasrallah and Hamas Prime Minister Haniyeh believed the time was now ripe to flex their muscles to procure the release of hundreds of convicted terrorists held in Israeli prisons in exchange for a few Israeli soldiers. This had worked very well before with thousands of prisoners being released by Israel in return for the remains of a few dead soldiers and the release of one businessman of dubious reputation.

What better way for Hezbollah and Hamas to retain the support and hopes of their civilian populations than securing the release of husbands and children who could then be enlisted once again to repeat the missions that had led to their imprisonment in the first place.

However kidnapping three Israeli soldiers by incursions into sovereign Israeli territory proved the downfall for these terrorist groups. Such brazenness was the breaking point - the red line - that these terrorist groups had not expected their actions would provoke.

Rather than getting expected negotiations by intermediaries to procure the exchange of prisoners, Hezbollah and Hamas unleashed Israel's military might as it entered Lebanon and Gaza in hot pursuit to free its soldiers with the full authority of international law firmly behind it.

Again completely misreading Israel's intentions, both Hezbollah and Hamas started firing rockets into Israel leading to Israel's re entry into Gaza in force and massive retaliation on Lebanon's infrastructure -- roads, bridges, airports and ports -- which had served as the supply lines for Hezbollah from Syria and Iran

This time international criticism of Israel's right to defend itself has been muted and even Arab countries have been critical of Hezbollah and Hamas.

Israel now carries the world on its shoulders as it alone seeks to implement Resolution 1559 of the United Nations Security Council calling for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias. This will result in the loss of Israeli lives and many casualties as an impotent United Nations does nothing to assert and enforce its own resolutions.

The civilian populations of Lebanon and Gaza have now paid and will continue to pay a huge price for the trust and belief they placed in their would be Saladdins to remove the Jewish State once and for all.

Some have suggested these civilians are innocent victims who did not have the strength to overthrow their oppressors. If true, one would imagine Israel's actions would have brought forward at least some expressions of support from within Lebanon and Gaza. Not a single word has been heard.

The Arab League has now finally pronounced the Road Map proposed by Bush, Putin, Chirac and Annan as "dead". The League is three years behind the times but at least it now recognises the futility of a plan that never had the slightest chance of getting off the drawing board.

So where does the Middle East go from here?

There is but one avenue now -- the removal of Hezbollah and Hamas followed by trilateral negotiations between Israel, Jordan and Egypt on the future sovereignty of the West Bank and Gaza.

Perhaps the Arab League will at long last realise the folly of trying to wipe Israel off the map and take these positive steps to end the ongoing 120 year conflict that is now bringing suffering on a scale to their constituency that even they could never have contemplated.

David Singer is an Australian Lawyer and Convenor of "Jordan is Palestine International", an organisation calling for sovereignty of the West Bank and Gaza to be allocated between Israel and Jordan as the two successor States to the Mandate for Palestine.

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Posted by Nurit Greenger, July 21, 2006.


I keep sending you articles and commentary so that we all learn the facts but most important, share the information with many others. The Internet is a POWERFUL COMMUNICATION TOOL. If we know the issues and then unite in the effort to achieve the objective at hand, by using the Internet we can even topple a government. I am sure you will agree with me that our world is in a terrible disarray and turmoil -- in the midst of WWIII. To make it a better place to live, we must unite in the effort.

If you agree with me... you know what to do next.

The Jewish community and Friends of Israel, as a whole, make up a diverse population that holds a variety of political and religious views. However, in wartime, with the deadly intentions of Israel's foes, made clear even to those whose illusions often prevent them from seeing clearly, this is no time for division.

We must act to aid Israel morally, financially, and expressively.

We must speak loudly, very loudly. Our voice must be carried out in unity in support of Israel. We must justify its military campaign, seeking to end the status quo whereby killers cross Israel's borders with impunity, and then bargain for the release of other killers.

We must make it clear that while Israel's goal remains to have peace, it must stop its Lebanese neighbors as well as the Palestinians from harboring killers, and allowing them to use their territory from where they deploy mayhem and then pretend as if they had nothing to do with all that is going on.

We must make sure that the U.S. government -- and other reliable "allies" -- do not interrupt Israel's response.

We must demand that the world diplomatic focus is not on Israel's reaction, but on the actions of the terrorists, and their state-sponsors in Damascus and Tehran.

We must remind our fellow citizens that Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist organizations are no different from the Al Qaeda terrorists who attacked America in September of 2001. The world democracies must unite and bring these killers to justice.

Hezbollah, Hamas and their murderous allies have made no secret of their goal to destroy Israel and hurt the USA. Our answer to them -- and to the people of Israel -- must be just as clear. Enough is enough and never again!

This is the crucial moment for our renewed activism and philanthropy aimed at shoring up Israel's defense and the welfare of its people. Israel's leaders have vowed that no Jewish blood will be shed with impunity again.

We must applaud and stand by the -- day after day, the month after month, the year after exhausting year -- courage, resolution and determination of the Israeli people.

We grieve four losses; we lament the undiminished willingness of Israel's foes to sacrifice their own people's lives. But together, united as one, we must stand behind Israel's soldiers and its government. May their efforts be blessed and rewarded with fast and eternal victory.


Contact Nurit Greenger at 4nuritg@gmail.com

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Posted by David Meir-Levi, July 20, 2006.

Below is some rather poignant history about the Israeli entry into southern lebanon in 1982, the withdrawal of most of Israel's forces in 1985, and the full liquidation of the security zone in 5/2000.

There are two useful history lessons to be learned from this information:

1.) Israel garnered no brownie points when it withdrew from Beirut in 1985 and took a stand on the 12-mile zone in southernmost lebanon. The world still spoke vitriolically of Israel's occupation of Lebanon. And for the 15 years from 1985 to 2000, the world condemned Israel for holding that 12-mile strip, while ignoring Syria's real occupation of all of Lebanon, and Hezbollah's rise to power and predominance with an armed terrorist force far more powerful than the Lebanese army.

2.) In bowing to both world and internal public opinion, Israel sets itself up for increased danger from terrorist forces, and increased casualties from terrorist attacks.

The assumption that making concessions to terrorist forces will garner benefits for Israel in the form of those terrorist forces acquiescing to peace-talks and cessation of terrorism has always proven wrong. The terrorists, consistently, have always simply pocketed the concessions and regrouped to perpetrate more terrorism from positions of enhanced logistical or political or military superiority as compared to their previous position.

Premature ceasefires, concessions of terrain and territory, unilateral withdrawal, all have consistently both emboldened the terrorists and enhanced their capacity for more terrorism.

So, why does the EU demand a quick cease-fire?

Why does Bush need to argue against the EU and the UN and the Vatican and even our own Department of State on behalf of Israel for Israel's right to defend itself against a relentless and brutal terror enemy?

Why, when Arabia and Egypt and Jordan are condemning Hezbollah, and when Arab journalists from Morocco to Iraq to Kuwait are telling their readers that it is time for the Palestinian terrorism to stop, and when Christian Lebanese are rejoicing that Israel is crushing Hezbollah.....

.......why do western pundits urge Israel to show restraint lest it engender more hatred in the hearts of the Lebanese?.....

......why does Putin join with the gaggle of European leaders who push for UN troops to enter the fray even when the UN troops of the last 30 years have actually facilitated terrorism against Israel and against Lebanese Christians in southern Lebanon?

Why do they want to save Hezbollah from destruction?

Usually, when the EU wallows in appeasement it is rushing to do the bidding of the oil-rich sheikhs....BUT....right now, only the Iranians are supporting Hezbollah. Much of the most powerful leadership in the Arab world has seen the threat of Iranian militarism and recognizes that stopping Hezbollah is the first step in stopping Iran.

So what is driving the EU and Russian leadership to behave like Chaimberlain in 1939?

And, where is Churchill when we need him?

This was written by Yehezkel Laing and Baruch Gordon and it appeared today in Arutz-Shevah (www.IsraelNN.com). David ML

As a result of the recent fighting with Hizbullah, Israeli civilian deaths from Lebanon-based terror have skyrocketed in comparison to when Israel controlled the Security Zone in southern Lebanon.

In the 15 years (1985-2000) that Israel controlled the Security Zone, seven Israeli civilians were killed from katyusha rocket fire. In comparison, in the first seven days of the current fighting after Hizbullah established artillery infrastructures in the former Security Zone, Israel has lost over 20 civilians. And that number is may continue to rise as rockets soar into Israeli communities.

The Security Zone was first established after Israel launched Operation Peace in Galilee on June 6th, 1982 to halt the incessant PLO katyusha bombardments of Jewish towns along the border with Lebanon.

The Peace of Galilee Operation ended in 1985 when the Israeli government withdrew troops leaving a small number of forces to maintain a 20-kilometer (12-mile) Security Zone to keep Israel's northern towns out of range of artillery fire.

In May, 2000, then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak gave the order to liquidate the Security Zone and over the course of two days, the IDF fully retreated from Lebanon.

In the public debate which raged in the years preceding Ehud Barak's surrender of the zone, security experts warned that it would endanger Israeli lives, but these warnings were ignored by the Labor government which he headed.

Below are a selection of quotes from both supporters and opponents of Israeli retreat from the northern Security Zone.

Prime Minister Ehud Barak
April 7, 2000; Jewish Telegraphic Agency:
We will pull back to the border out of our interests, and we will defend Israel and its interests from within our borders. We don't have a claim on a single square mile of Lebanese territory. I don't think there's an immediate danger of any sort of conflagration...

Meretz MK Yossi Beilin
December 24, 1998; Israeli Army Radio:
"The security zone in south Lebanon has proven it brings no security for Israelis, especially for the residents in the Israeli towns in the northern region."

Barak Government Cabinet Statement
March 5, 2000; CNN:
"The Israeli Defense Forces will [retreat from the Security Zone and] deploy on the border with Lebanon by July 2000 and from there will ensure the safety of the northern towns and villages,"

Prime Minister Ehud Barak
May 24, 2000; Cabinet Protocol:
"I believe that the security situation will settle down, even if there are a few incidents, which will bring security and a normal daily routine to the residents of the north."

Hizbullah leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah,
February 7, 2000; CNN:
"We're close to victory, we'll drive them (the Israeli forces) from our land."

Herzl Ben-Asher, Kiryat Shmonah [a northern town] city council member
March 5, 2000; Arutz-7:
"Years ago, the army was posted in Lebanon for a reason: to protect the northern communities - and the army leadership continues to feel that such should be the policy today. But yesterday, the entire government suddenly voted in favor of a withdrawal! Our political leadership has not made a security decision, but has capitulated to the Four Mothers and public pressure!"

[Ed. Note: The Four Mothers movement, founded by four women with sons serving in Lebanon, was established in 1997 and called upon the government to unilaterally pull Israel's ground forces out of the Security Zone and abandon the territory to terrorist elements.]

Four Mothers founder Rachel Ben-Dor
March 6, 2000; Arutz-7:
"When the IDF - which, after all, is the best army in the Middle East - is deployed in large numbers on the international border [following the retreat from the Security Zone], we will hopefully be able to prevent and respond to such attacks."

National Union Party Knesset Member Effie Eitam
May 11, 2006; Yediot Aharonot:
"Israel withdrew from Lebanon in 2000. Now Hizbullah has over 10,000 missiles on the border pointed at us."

Caroline Glick
May. 31, 2006; Jerusalem Post:
"If before the IDF's withdrawal from southern Lebanon in May 2000, Hizbullah and its state sponsor constituted a challenging, bloody tactical threat to Israel, today they are a strategic threat. In short, this week's story about the Zelzal missile shipment reveals what a terrible mistake Israel's retreat from south Lebanon was."

Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh
May 19, 2000; Yediot Aharonot:
"We are leaving because of problems with the ability of the Israeli public to stand firm. That is the whole truth. There is no point in pretending. "

David Meir-Levi is an American-born Israeli, currently living in Palo Alto. His expertise is in Near Eastern studies and the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. He is Director of Peace and Education at Israel Peace Initiative (www.ipi-usa.org). Contact him at david_meirlevi@hotmail.com

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Posted by Morris J. Amitay, July 20, 2006.

While I normally eschew anything French when it comes to the Middle East, in this case, however, I am reminded of the Gallic saying -- "the more things change, the more they stay the same." This certainly applies, because for the past 20 years or so, the U.S. Congress has been debating whether to open up a small portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) for oil exploration -- and two decades later, Congress is still debating this issue. Attempts to obtain the 11 billion barrels of oil locked in there have been blocked by Senate filibusters or threats thereof, spurred on by the fierce opposition of environmental groups who loudly decry the despoiling of what they describe as a "pristine wilderness". Preventing us from gaining greater energy independence from mid-east oil, while our nation's addiction to oil continues to grow, is the height of shortsightedness -- or to be more accurate -- stupidity.

The reason for my outburst came about when I recently came across testimony I had offered to the Senate Energy Committee urging development in ANWR back in the year 1987! At the time, I argued that the decisions Congress must take with regard to development in ANWR "will undoubtedly have important ramifications for U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and also for Israel's future security." So much for my powers of persuasion -- or the good sense of the U.S. Congress. But at the time of this testimony we imported only 30% of our oil needs from abroad. Today this is close to 70% -- and counting. Also, then we were talking about $15 for a barrel of oil -- today we are paying five times as much with prices at the pump going through the roof based on speculation, not the cost of production. But aside from the economic and political benefits of opening up ANWR, there is the added attraction of having fewer billions of dollars in oil revenues going to states like Saudi Arabia and Iran, whose petrodollars fund terrorism throughout the world. What is particularly galling is that we are prevented from producing the equivalent of thirty years of Saudi imports (at a million barrels a day) due to the largely bogus arguments presented by the opponents.

One startling figure which stands out is that of the more than 19 million acres in ANWR -- only 2,000 (or a footprint the size of Dulles Airport) would be needed for development. This would have a minimal adverse effect on the relatively scant wildlife found in this barren region. In fact, the most populous animal species there -- the caribou -- have flourished, and quadrupled in size from 6,000 when development began in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska to 12,000 today. In the area where the existing pipeline runs, locals insist that the caribou's increase can be linked to the herds congregating there for its warmth, which in turn has led to increased procreational activity among the caribou. While I cannot personally attest to having witnessed this phenomenon -- it seems both compelling and somewhat romantic.

As for the people who would be directly affected by development in ANWR, these are the 200 or so native inhabitants of Kaktovik, the only village adjacent to the Costal Plain. Not surprisingly, they are all for development in order to improve their lives. As for the rest of us, the latest polls show that 70% of the American public -- a vast majority -- believe we should develop oil and gas in ANWR. So what is still holding this up when we are paying more than three dollars a gallon for gasoline? Originally, Congress designated 1.5 million of the 19.6 million acre refuge for energy exploration. Over the years, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation to open ANWR on ten different occasions only to have it filibustered to death in the Senate, ironically with the support of some lawmakers who consider themselves close friends of Israel and supporters of greater U.S. energy independence. Something is either wrong with their logic here, or the environmental extremists who have lobbied so hard on this issue are prepared to defy both logic and the national interest.

Last May, the House again passed a bill permitting development in ANWR. But today, with all that is happening in the Middle East and with oil prices incredibly higher, there are still 40 some Senators who still don't get it. Of course our nation can and should do more about conservation and encouraging the development of renewable sources of energy. But this takes time and much more effort than is being expended now. In the interim, developing ANWR offers a quick fix and sends an important message. Congressional passage of legislation permitting drilling in ANWR would immediately lower prices and would reduce the obscene profits that are funding terrorism directed at us and our friends.

With so much else on the pro-Israel community's plate right now -- Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria and Iran -- why raise this issue now? Because it is one which is amenable to immediate, positive action. But this can only come about if we let Congress know that they have the responsibility to act responsibly, and to do what has made sense for so many years already -- but especially now.

Morrie Amitay, a Washington attorney, is a former Executive Director of AIPAC and founder of the pro-Israel Washington PAC (www.washingtonpac.com).

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Posted by Barry Rubin, July 20, 2006.

Understandably, most people in the world fail to understand Palestinian ideology and strategy today, largely because it is so bizarre compared to politics as usual.

On the one hand, the conflict is unsolvable and there is no way to stop the violence. On the other hand, Palestinian tactics are unworkable, politics are disorganized, and military strategy is self-defeating. They can harass Israel but not do much more than that.

Before examining the basic principles of the Palestinian approach, it is useful to consider how things usually work and thus what people who don't know much about Palestinian politics think they are like.

Normal politics feature realizable goals, paying keen attention to the balance of forces, avoiding losing conflicts, and seeking a stable state. They also include such things as putting a high priority on raising living standards and building effective institutions to serve the people.

Every day, Western governments, media, and academics try to impose this model on Palestinian behavior, politics, and ideology. Yet, it just doesn't work. The things many in the West think motivate Palestinians--getting a state, ending the occupation--are of no interest in their own right. Indeed, the only way to maintain the pretense is a combination of amnesia and abandoning of the kind of rational analysis used to view any other political situation in the world.

I must add here that in private (though virtually never in public), Palestinian intellectuals sound a lot like me. Over and over again, one hears disgust, despair, and profound cynicism along the lines describe