PFLP/Hamas squabble; Hamas paranoia increases

Terror groups tried to put together a show of unity against Israel, but Hamas had another agenda. From Ma'an:
The armed wing of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine was "disappointed" by Hamas fighters' show of support for Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood during a military march in Gaza, it said Friday.

The DFLP fighters, the National Resistance Brigades, said signs waved by Hamas' Al-Qassam Brigades fighters did not reflect the DFLP's position.

The military march of Palestinian factions in the northern Gaza Strip was intended to respond to Israel's occupation and the ongoing threats against the enclave, the National Resistance Brigades said in a statement.

The march was not intended to express interference in Egypt's internal affairs, the group added.

The National Resistance Brigades said it would remain committed to a policy of non-intervention in the domestic affairs of any Arab country. There is a Palestinian consensus on that policy, and the DFLP will adhere to that consensus, the statement said.

The armed wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, withdrew from the march because Hamas fighters raised signs in support of the Muslim Brotherhood.

"In a meeting between all the military wings of all resistance movements in the Gaza Strip, it was agreed to organize a march, and hold a press conference for all Palestinian military wings that aimed to highlight the unity of resistance against the occupation," the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades said in a statement.

PFLP fighters were "surprised" that Hamas fighters raised signs to support the Muslim Brotherhood, the PFLP brigades said, adding that the act did not benefit national unity.

Here is video of the rally. The terror groups look to be anything but disciplined.

Hamas members towards the end holding up four fingers are referring to Egypt's attack on a Muslim Brotherhood rally.

Meanwhile, I am seeing lots of videos of Egyptians on TV hurling insults at Hamas. The organization has really reached its lowest point since it started.

Hamas is turning even more paranoid. From the Al Qassam Brigades website:
Ministry of Interior and National Security in Gaza said that it discovered a plot against the Strip that targets political figures and aims to stir up unrest, and confirmed arresting some elements involved in the plot.

The spokesman for the ministry Islam Shahwan said on Friday during a press conference held in Gaza “we have recently spotted suspicious movements of some individuals planning to shake the stability on the home front,”

"As they were put under surveillance and then held by the security services, they turned out to have collaborated with Israel’s Mossad," he confirmed.

He said that those elements were interrogated and they made serious confessions about the plot that aims to create chaos is Gaza, and added that the confessions revealed that the parties involved in the plot include Israeli intelligence services, and Intelligence Service and Preventive Security Service of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, along with other Arab Intelligence Services.
Yes, Arab countries, the PLO and Israel are all secretly colluding to take down Hamas!

Arab woman forced to withdraw from Israeli feminist party because of threats

YNet Hebrew reports that an Arab woman was forced to withdraw her candidacy in a new pan-Israeli women's political party because of threats.

The party, Ometz Lev (Courage,) was founded by Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Naomi Tsur and Councilwoman Edna Friedman to push for women's rights. They intended to include all sectors of Israeli feminist society in the party including Arab and Hareidi women.

When they registered and had to reveal the names of the candidates on their slate, the east Jerusalem Arab woman's name was included. And then the threats started.

"It started with telephone calls to my home," says the woman. "[The calls] warned me that running for election is to acknowledge the sovereignty of Israel over the east (part of the city) and it will end badly. "

Ultimately, she says, her family pressured her to remove her candidacy. "We need you alive," said her relatives, and she gave up the idea.

(Meanwhile, Ometz Lev - which is still searching for a proper Haredi candidate - had to allow men who are pro-feminist to join the party in order not to run foul of Israeli anti-discrimination laws!)

(h/t sshender)

Non-sequitur of the day: "Mideast turmoil pushes PLO/Israel peace process"

Reuters writes:
Turmoil in Syria and Egypt is nudging Israelis and Palestinians toward peace, a U.S. official said on Friday as Secretary of State John Kerry flew to Europe for talks about that conflict and a possible U.S. strike on Syrian targets.

A senior U.S. State Department official said Syria’s civil war, as well as upheaval in Egypt, whose army ousted Islamist Mohamed Mursi, its first freely elected president, gives Israelis and Palestinians an incentive to end their conflict.

“Both sides have made clear to us and to each other that they do not want the turmoil to engulf them and that therefore it motivates them to try to resolve their conflict to prevent that from happening,” the official told reporters with Kerry.
Right now, the PA security forces and the IDF manage to keep the Islamists at bay in the West Bank. If there would be a Palestinian Arab state, however, the IDF couldn't help any more and the chances for an Egyptian or Tunisian-style Islamist revolution would increase. Unlike in Egypt, there is little enthusiasm for the PA security forces' pre-emptive arrests of Islamists in most of the territories.

As I have noted, right now there is more stability in Israel and the territories than there has ever been since the first intifada. There is zero evidence that a "peace agreement" would continue that. The status quo is exactly what is keeping the turmoil out!

And, of course, there is that little sector called Gaza that shows what (democratically elected) Islamist-ruled Palestinian areas would look like.

Maybe this official is trying to spin the facts, or maybe Israeli and PLO officials are telling the Americans what they want to hear. But the statement as quoted is nonsensical.

Anyone worried about the PLO-controlled areas turning into Syria should be against "peace talks."

Iran's PressTV curiously obsessed with Prince Charles' yarmulka

Last week, Prince Charles attended a ceremony welcoming Britian's new chief rabbi, and he wore a velvet kippah with his official crest.

This made Iran's PressTV go on an interesting antisemitic conspiracy theory rant.

Britain’s Prince Charles has raised eyebrows, attending the induction ceremony of UK’s new chief Rabbi while wearing a Jewish skullcap.

Aside from snatching the title of the first British royal to attend the inaugural of a chief rabbi, the heir to the British throne put on display his most explicit ever show of allegiance with the jews, wearing a yarmulke adorned with the Prince of Wales’s official emblem of feathers.

The new chief rabbi Ephraim Mervis took over the top position on Sunday.

This is not the first time the royal skullcap has made appearances as Charles has worn it at various other Jewish related events and ceremonies.

The British royal family has close ties with the Zionist regime of Israel and the Israeli-supported Jewish groups in Britain.

In one such of show of those ties before Charles’s recent stunt, the regime’s president Shimon Peres sent Charles’s son William and his wife a blue outfit for their newborn son back in July, with the message “From Israel with love” printed on the shirt.

British royals have also a tradition of having their baby boys circumcised by a Mohel, which is the Jewish word for a circumcision practitioner. Charles himself was one of those babies.

This is while, there are also huge speculations about vast covert links between British royals and the Israeli regime, which include reports of joint financial and political interests and go as far as drawing a Jewish lineage for the royals.

The speculations are rarely based on concrete evidence as the royals keep their true relations to Jews secret, but as popular historian Simon Sebag Montefiore says, “historically the British royal family has had a very friendly relationship with the Jewish community”.
Well, that's all the proof I need!

The comments show how much most PressTV readers hate Jews as well.

(h/t Ian)

9/07 Links: Israel – The happiest country on Earth?, Arab Countries Offered to Pay for Syria Invasion

From Ian:

Israel – The happiest country on Earth?
Have you ever googled “most hated country in the world”? As you can imagine, Israel ranks as one of the highest, right next to North Korea and Iran. Let’s face it, in some circles our Jewish country is just not that popular. Yet, if you research the happiest country in the world, Israel tops the list.
An article published by The Asia Times reads, “Envy surrounds no country on Earth like the state of Israel, and with good reason: by objective measures, Israel is the happiest nation on Earth.... It is one of the wealthiest, freest and best-educated; and it enjoys a higher life expectancy than Germany or the Netherlands. But most remarkable is that Israelis appear to love life and hate death more than any other nation.”
Take a minute and think about that. Picture that from above. Israel is geographically engulfed by countries that are hell-bent on destroying her, constantly radiating negativity or actively attempting to kill her civilians. With all that hostility aimed at the Jewish state, Israelis are walking the streets of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem the happiest people in the world. It’s absolutely remarkable.
Majority of Israelis support freedom of religion, marriage
According to Hiddush, an Israeli NGO advocating freedom of religion and equality, 83 percent of Jewish respondents to a survey said they support “freedom of religion,” and 61% advocated for the complete separation of religion and state.
The study, titled “The Religion and State Index,” was conducted for Hiddush by the Rafi Smith Polling Institute among 800 adult Jewish respondents who are representative of the adult Jewish Israeli population. It was published Tuesday ahead of the Jewish New Year.
15 arrested on Temple Mount after violent clashes
Palestinian youths at the site began an onslaught of stone-throwing at officers on Friday morning, Israel Police said.
No injuries were reported, as police used stun grenades to quell the riot and let worshipers leave the site.
On Wednesday, 15 people were arrested ahead of the Jewish New Year after they threw stones and clashed with police at site. Police also stopped several buses carrying some 100 Muslim worshipers from accessing the site on suspicion that they intended to cause disturbances. There were no reports of injuries.
Alan M. Dershowitz Assad Is Adopting Hamas "Dead Baby" Strategy
When Hamas employed this dead baby strategy against Israel, it was a resounding success. Despite the fact that Hamas deliberately fired rockets from schoolyards, hospitals and densely populated civilian areas, the international community blamed Israel for trying to prevent rockets from attacking its civilians by targeting the rockets and occasionally killing civilians. It was Israel, rather than Hamas, that was accused of "war crimes," even though it is clearly a war crime to use civilians as human shields. Israel had little choice but to protect its own citizens against rocket attacks, but the world focused not on the moral correctness of Israel's decisions, but rather on the gruesome pictures of dead Palestinians babies, even though some of them were actually caused by errant Palestinian rockets.
Khaled Abu Toameh Fatah Wants Egypt To Overthrow Hamas
As the Egyptian army continues to demolish houses and smuggling tunnels, Fatah leaders in the West Bank are hoping that they will soon be able to return to the Gaza Strip.
At one time, Fatah leaders had hopes that Israel would overthrow Hamas through military force. Now, they are hoping that the new rulers of Egypt will do the job.
Beleaguered Hamas officials claim that the Palestinian Tamarod group is operated and trained by Egypt's General Intelligence Service and Fatah, with the goal of toppling their regime in the Gaza Strip. Hamas security forces have detained several Palestinian activists and journalists as part of an effort to crush the new group.
Egypt’s anti-Morsi movement meets with Gaza’s anti-Hamas group
“The meeting sought to transfer experiences and mechanisms of Egypt’s Tamarod to the Gaza Strip,” said Mahmoud Badr, the leader of the group.
The meeting took place in Cairo on Wednesday evening.
“Tamarod is a revolutionary movement struggling against injustice and despotism everywhere and in every place. This experience is feasible against all dictatorships,” Badr highlighted.
Gaza fuel shortage may cause power plant shut down
For the second time in a week, the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip warned Thursday that the Palestinian territory’s sole power plant is liable to shut down entirely in the coming days because of a fuel shortage.
Gaza’s energy authority published a statement saying that the fuel shortage has reached such severity that it may precipitate “a humanitarian disaster,” Israel Radio reported.
Hamas TV to broadcast from Copenhagen
He added that their relationship with Al-Aqsa was “strictly professional”.
“We have decided to keep working for Al-Aqsa as long as what they report is in line with our viewpoint,” al Maimouni said. “If they try to move their content into a political direction that we do not agree with, we will decline.”
In 2008, Al-Aqsa aired an episode of the children's programme 'The Pioneers of Tomorrow', in which the show's large pink rabbit Assud promoted the killing of Danish cartoonist Kurt Westergaard and said he would "bite and eat" Danes if they insulted the prophet Mohammed again.
Obama says US cannot turn ‘blind eye’ in Syria
The president said that the United States cannot “turn a blind eye” to the images coming out of Syria following a reported chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime in a Damascus suburb on August 21. The US estimates that 1,429 people were killed in that attack.
“The US has presented a powerful case to the world that the Syrian government is responsible for this horrific attack on its own people,” the president said.
“This was not only a direct attack on human dignity, it’s a serious threat to our national security.”
Israeli policy statement supports Obama on Syria
Shortly after the Senate Foreign Relations Committee concluded a lengthy session debating the approval of a retaliatory strike, Oren released an official statement in which he said that “Israel agrees with President Obama that the use of chemical weapons is a ‘heinous act’ for which the Assad regime must be held accountable and for which there must be ‘international consequences.’ Israel further agrees with the President that the use of chemical weapons promotes the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and encourages ‘governments who would choose to build nuclear arms.’”
In his statement, Oren quoted Obama’s exact language to emphasize Jerusalem’s support for the American president’s position.
US notes yearlong escalation of chemical weapons use in Syria
On Wednesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the administration knew of at least 11 incidents where Assad used chemical weapons even before the August attack, which is more than double the number the US had previously divulged.
But the administration did not go public with the information, saying that it believed Assad used chemical weapons only in April this year, a month after a March sarin attack in Syria went awry and also killed government troops.
“The president didn’t believe it was a compelling enough case to win the support of the American people and the world,” Kerry told lawmakers when he was asked why the US didn’t push for military action in April.
Kerry: Arab Countries Have Offered to Pay for Syria Invasion
Secretary of State John Kerry said Arab countries have offered to pay for a full invasion of Syria to oust President Bashar Assad.
“With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and to assess, the answer is profoundly yes,” Kerry told the House Foreign Affairs Committee during a hearing Wednesday, according to The Washington Post. “They have. That offer is on the table.”
Report: Hezbollah Admitted that Assad Was Behind Chemical Attack
Participants at a confidential meeting of German lawmakers on Monday said the head of the BND foreign intelligence agency told them it had intercepted a phone call believed to be between a high-ranking member of Hezbollah and the Iranian Embassy in Damascus.
"The BND referred to a phone call they had heard between a Hezbollah official and the Iranian embassy in which he spoke about Assad having ordered the attack," one of the participants told Reuters on Wednesday.
In the phone call, the Hezbollah official says Assad's order for the attack was a mistake and that he was losing his nerve, the participants reported the BND briefing as saying.
Assad: Syria has received Russian missiles
Syrian President Bashar Assad said in an interview broadcast Thursday that he is “confident in victory” in his country’s civil war, and he warned that Damascus would retaliate for any future Israeli airstrike on his territory.
Assad also told the Lebanese TV station Al-Manar that Russia has fulfilled some of its weapons contracts recently, but he was vague on whether this included advanced S-300 air defense systems.
U.N. Ambassador: U.S. Thought Iran Wouldn’t Tolerate Syria Using Chemical Weapons
United Nations ambassador Samantha Power spoke on Friday to the Center for American Progress, continuing the Obama administration’s attempts to win over more liberals for Syrian military strikes. In laying out a more humanitarian argument for intervention, Power spoke of all the non-military tactics the United States attempted beforehand, revealing that they were hoping the U.N. would be able to come up with a report on Syria’s use of chemical weapons that would “convince Russia or Iran… to cast loose” Syria.
Iran threatens brutal attacks on Americans, Obama family if US hits Syria
And in an unprecedented statement, a former Iranian official has warned of mass abductions and brutal killings of American citizens around the world and the rape and killing of one of Obama’s daughters should the United States attack Syria.
Alireza Forghani, the former governor of southern Iran’s Kish Province, threw down the gauntlet last week. Forghani is an analyst and strategy specialist in the supreme leader’s camp and closely aligned with Mehdi Taeb, who heads the regime’s Ammar Strategic Base, a radical think thank, and thus speaks with the blessing of the Islamic regime.
Egypt interior minister warns of new wave of terror after assassination attempt
A bomb targeted the convoy of Egypt’s interior minister Thursday in Cairo in the first attack on a senior government official since the country’s Islamist president was toppled in a coup two months ago, raising concerns over a possible campaign of violence by his supporters.
The assassination attempt against Mohammed Ibrahim, who is in charge of the police force, signaled the arrival in the capital of the sort of insurgency-style attacks that have been escalating in the Sinai Peninsula.
Egypt moves to dissolve Brotherhood NGO – reports
Egypt's army-backed government will dissolve the Muslim Brotherhood as a non-governmental organisation within days, a newspaper reported on Friday, a move that would press a crackdown on deposed President Mohamed Mursi's movement.
The move applies to the NGO registered by the Brotherhood in March in response to a lawsuit that argued the group had no legal status. It would mark a mostly symbolic legal blow to Mursi's group as the authorities round up its members in the harshest crackdown in decades.
Video shows two men firing RPGs at ship transiting Suez Canal
The video carries a logo featuring a black Islamist flag and the name of the "al-Firqan Brigade". It shows two men, dressed in civilian clothes, firing RPGs into the side of the ship, where they explode.
The ship carries the name "COSCO" on its side and appears to match pictures of the reported target of the attack, the Panamanian-registered Cosco Asia. (h/t Yoel)
Daphne Anson: Charlie Is Whose Darling?
On Thursday, the website of Iran's satellite propaganda channel Press TV dwelt upon the apparently sinister fact that Prince Charles attended the installation ceremony of the new Chief Rabbi of Britain's Orthodox Jews, Ephraim Mirvis, and, moreover, wore a kippa, or "a yarmulke," as the report described it.
Press TV is a harbinger of conspiracy theories to do with Jews and Zionists, of course, and the clear inference from the report is that Britain's Royals are in the pocket of Da Joos, even if, as I've lamented previously, the Queen, who succeeded to the throne in 1952 and has visited most major ountries, has, like Charles himself, never set foot in Israel!
Plans unveiled for Munich Olympics memorial
Wednesday’s news conference at the Bavarian Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs announcing plans for the memorial took place a day before a ceremony in Israel marking the 41st anniversary of the attack by the Palestinian terrorist group Black September.
The planned hall of remembrance is slated to be built near the site that housed the games and will cost 1.7 million euros (approximately $2.25 million). It will allow visitors to learn about the events and the victims — 11 Israeli athletes and coaches along with the police officer — as well as to view the site of the the failed rescue attempt at the Furstenfeldbruck airfield. Ultimately the airport’s tower will be included in the memorial.
The memorial is scheduled to be completed by 2016.
Israeli drip system pioneer honored with top water prize
Netafim, the Israeli company that invented drip irrigation, has been awarded what is considered the most prestigious honor in the world of water conservation and protection, the Stockholm Industry Water Award.
Netafim won the prize for “directly contributing to a more water and food secure world,” the award committee said. It’s a commercial enterprise, but one with a heart, the committee said — a company that has managed to figure out a way to expand and profit while having a truly positive impact on the developing world.
Conservative, pro-Israel candidate wins Aussie election
The Liberal Party’s election victory may signal a strengthening of ties between Canberra and Jerusalem. Abbot told reporters last month that the last two Labor governments had not maintained Australia’s strong relationship with the Jewish state, something he said he aimed to fix, according to the Australian Associated Press.
“There’s been a bit of wobbling under the current government but I would expect our standard rock-solid friendship with Israel to resume should the coalition win the election,” he said. ”I’m a friend of Israel — always have been, always will be.”

!Shana Tova u'Metuka שנה טובה ומתוקה!

I would like to wish all my readers a happy and sweet New Year. May this be a year of health, a year of prosperity, a year of joy, a year of peace, and a year of security - and a better year than last year.

I will not be blogging until Saturday night.  Luckily, apples dipped in honey are an excellent antidote for web withdrawal symptoms.

9/04 Links Part 2: 9 Challenges for the IDF, Peter Beinart’s illiberal mission, PA Demands Gas Masks

From Ian:

Areas of anxiety: 9 New Year challenges for the IDF
Israelis, facing external threats from every point of the compass, would like to believe that Obama is correct, notwithstanding his last-minute decision Saturday to delay a strike on neighboring Syria’s WMD-using President Bashar Assad.
But the IDF, however closely it coordinates with its American colleagues, functions on the assumption that its task is to protect Israel without outside assistance.
The IDF has never been stronger, its commanders say. But as they take stock this Rosh Hashanah, the challenges have rarely been as acute and varied, in a region that has seldom been so unstable. These are nine of the more immediate areas of concern.
Poll: Israeli Jews not worried by security situation
The US is expected to go to war as early as next week against Syria, which has vowed to “set Israel on fire” in retaliation. Lebanon could get embroiled, which could lead to Hezbollah unleashing its stockpile of 60,000 missiles and rockets. And an International Atomic Energy Association’s report last week indicated that Iran has escalated its nuclear program.
Nevertheless, only 16.4 percent of Israeli Jews believe their security situation will worsen in the new year of 5774 that starts on Wednesday evening, according to the Peace Index, an Israel Democracy Institute/Tel Aviv University poll released on Tuesday.
The surveyors found that 46.1% of Israeli Jews believe their security will remain the same, while 28.3% think it will improve.
Oren: US becoming more isolationist, but support for Israel higher than ever
During his term as Israel's Ambassador to the U.S., Michael Oren found himself faced with a rapidly changing America, a Middle East on fire, and an Israel that had to deftly navigate between the seismic changes taking place in both locations. But looking at the polls, which continuously show high support for Israel among Americans, Oren is satisfied, saying they show that support for Israel in American public opinion is "the highest it's ever been."
"At a time when the Middle East is turbulent, Israel is an island of stability," Oren says.
Bennett: International peace guarantees are meaningless
“When you see everything that’s going on around us, I can’t even comprehend signing an agreement that’s based on international guarantees, UN or other, and to trust anyone that is not the IDF, which is the only one that can protect us,” Bennett said in an interview with Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth, published Wednesday.
Commenting on the ongoing Syrian civil war, Bennett assessed that the West seems disinclined to enter the conflict, and suggested that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan deterred US and European citizens from stomaching military action in the Middle East.
Senior PA official: Peace talks with Israel are going nowhere
In the most damning Palestinian assessment to date, Yasser Abed Rabbo said that the negotiations, which kicked off in late July after a three year hiatus, had made no progress.
"These negotiations are futile and won't lead to any results," Abed Rabbo told Voice of Palestine radio.
"I don't expect any progress at all unless there is huge and powerful American pressure, such as the one we are seeing from America to deal with the Syrian issue," added Abed Rabbo, one of just two officials authorized by Abbas to discuss the talks.
An Israeli official in Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's office declined to comment on the remarks, saying the two sides had agreed that only the United States should speak about the talks. "We are abiding by that agreement," the official said.
Saudi Arabia donating $200 million for Palestinian cities to prevent Judaization
Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah has decided to grant $200 million for the development of Palestinian cities, and for protecting their Arab and Islamic character against “Judaization.”
Municipal and Rural Affairs Minister Prince Mansour bin Miteb announced the news on Sunday while opening a conference of the Organization of Islamic Capitals and Cities in Saudi Arabia, Saudi newspaper Arab News reported on Monday.
Palestinian Authority Demands Israel Provide it with Gas Masks
A Palestinian Authority official has demanded that Israel provide civilians living in PA-controlled areas with gas masks in the event of a spillover of violence from Syria.
Israel has been distributing gas masks to its citizens over the last two weeks amid fears of reprisals against the Jewish state, following anticipated US military intervention in neighboring Syria.
Islamic Jihad Issues Call to Abduct IDF Soldiers
Hader Habib, a senior member of the Islamic Jihad in Gaza, called on fellow terrorists to abduct an IDF soldier, in a speech Sunday at a protest tent for identification with Palestinian Authority (PA) prisoners that was erected next to the Red Cross Headquarters in Gaza.
Hader called for the abduction of soldiers so that they can be exchanged for PA prisoners.
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas said Tuesday in his speech at the Fatah convention that releasing Fatah Tanzim commander Marwan Barghouti, who was sentenced to five life sentences, and Ahmed Saadat, the PFLP commander who ordered the assassination of Minister Rechavam Ze'evi, as well as other senior terrorists, are on his political agenda.
Peter Beinart’s illiberal mission: To subvert Jewish & non-Jewish support for Israel
I can assure Beinart that the more American Jews get to know the truth – not the liberal-tinted glasses view, nor the propaganda view – they will be even more pro-Yesha, pro-Jewish retention of Judea and Samaria and more anti-Palestinianism.
They will learn of the “Temple Denial” phenomenon. They will become acquainted with the anti-Semitism at the root of Islamist ideology which drives (and, with the Grand Mufti El-Husseini’s pro-Nazism beginning in 1933, drove) their bloodthirsty opposition to Zionism. They will know that the dispute is not territorial nor where a boundary line will be drawn but it is existential. They will come to acknowledge the deeply rooted fanaticism and extremism that guides their anti-Zionism thinking and actions. They will recognize the lies and half-truths that form the basis of Palestinianism, the inventivity model of nationalism.
I publish their words. Many other bloggers and web sites do as well. With Google Translate, even the Arab-language sites are open to us all. There is no shortage of getting to know “the enemy”. In fact, we are commanded to, in a sense, to “know thy enemy” which, in Jewish thought was expressed in the Ethics of the Fathers, 2:14, by Rabbi Elazar who would say: ‘Be diligent in the study of Torah. Know what to answer a heretic’.
Legitimizing Israel's Destruction
What do a Norwegian government employee, a director of a "co-existence" program and several academics from the University of Exeter have in common? They are all happily colluding with a front group of the Palestinian terrorist organization, Hamas.
On September 7, the Palestine Return Centre (PRC) will be hosting an "International Conference on the Oslo Accords," which it has planned with the support of the Exeter Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, part of the University of Exeter.
Intelligence agencies regard the PRC as one of the leading lobby groups in Britain for Hamas, and claim that three of the PRC's trustees are "Hamas activists who found refuge in Britain" during the 1990s. Hamas leaders also regularly address the PRC's conferences.
The London-based Palestine Return Centre (PRC), it turns out, was originally established on the basis of opposition to the Oslo peace process. The conference is therefore unlikely to reach any positive conclusions about the Oslo Accords, or to recommend its revival.
The Cold War’s Arab Spring: How the Soviets Created Today’s Middle East
Russian exile Pavel Stroilov argues just this in his forthcoming book, Behind the Desert Storm. “Not a word of it is true,” he writes. “It was the Soviet Empire—not the British Empire—that was responsible for the instability in the Middle East.”
Stroilov, a historian now living in London, fled Russia in 2003 after stealing 50,000 top-secret Kremlin documents from the Gorbachev Foundation archives, where he was working as a researcher. He was given access to the archive in 1999, but Gorbachev refused him permission to copy its most significant documents. Having observed the network administrator entering the password into the system, Stroilov reproduced the archive and sent it to secure locations around the world.
Why Literally Everyone in the World Hates the Jews, and What To Do About It
Two new scholarly books show how even the most neutral academic can feel bound to answer anti-Semites’ demonic vigor in kind
In many parts of the world, Jews are increasingly unwelcome in the 21st century. The number of countries in which wearing visibly Jewish clothing such as a kippa means risking physical violence has hit an all-time high. On both the individual and the national level, Jews are targeted with extraordinary ferocity: We hear Israelis (but no one else) being compared to Nazis; we are told that Jewish nationalism is oppressive and archaic; that Israel is a uniquely racist country; that Israel’s terrible misdeeds explain why people hate Jews. Instead of being seen as ordinary or all too human, Jews are seen as carriers of a uniquely transcendent evil. No other group of people on the planet is accused so much and of such fantastic wrongs. For a few decades after the Holocaust, it seemed that anti-Semitism might wane or even die out. That hope has now been defeated. Could anything we do or say stem the tide, or will Jew-hatred persist as long as there are Jews to hate?
Druze Village’s Character Shaped by Education, Sport, and Loyalty to Israel
The enclaves of one of Israel’s most loyal and ardently Zionist indigenous populations lie not far from the coastal city of Acre. This community is no historical remnant—it is a modern group of Israelis whose service and sacrifice for the Jewish state is legendary. Residents are lawyers and doctors, entrepreneurs and merchants, teachers and engineers, and political activists. The community’s young men serve in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) with great honor, and its young women are beginning to enter national service.
That description applies not to one of Israel’s Jewish communities, but rather to the Druze village of Julis, one of the smallest of the Druze communities in northern Israel.
Recalling the 1943 Rosh Hashanah Holocaust Escape of Danish Jews
In the late summer of 1943, amid rising tensions between the occupation regime and the Danish government, the Nazis declared martial law and decided the time had come to deport Danish Jews to the death camps. But Georg Duckwitz, a German diplomat in Denmark, leaked the information to Danish friends. Duckwitz was later honored by Yad Vashem as one of the Righteous Among the Nations. As word of the Germans’ plans spread, the Danish public responded with a spontaneous nationwide grassroots effort to help the Jews.
Daphne Anson: Simon's Story Upsets The Israel Bashers
And what a wonderful series Schama's BBC2 documentary series "The Story of the Jews" promises to be, as the first episode, screened on 1st September, shows:
And a gang of well-known Israel-bashers (Sarah Colborne, Palestine Solidarity Campaign; Daud Abdullah, Middle East Monitor; Professor Jonathan Rosenhead, British Committee for the Universities of Palestine; Abe Hayeem, Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine; Ismail Patel, Friends of Al Aqsa; Diana Neslen, Jews for Justice for Palestinians) have written an Open Letter of protest to the Controller of BBC2, Janice Hadlow, dated 3rd September, that says in part:
".... In an interview in the Radio Times (31 August-6 September), Schama describes himself as an ‘historian-Zionist’ and says he will be making ‘the moral case for Israel’ in the final episode of this five part series.
We find it alarming that the BBC is giving a platform to an openly pro-Israeli commentator to make the ‘moral case’ for Israel. Schama’s views will go unopposed, unchallenged and unanalysed. This is a far cry from the balanced and impartial broadcasting that the BBC claims to champion...."
15-year-old Syrian Girl Released from Ziv Medical Center
Israel Defense Forces transferred the young girl to Israel from a field hospital in Syria where she underwent surgery for abdominal wounds and shrapnel injuries on both of her legs. The Syrian medics decided to amputate one of her legs, while the Israeli medical team was able to save the girl’s other leg from being amputated.
"I wish the people of Israel a happy new year and wish that we will be able to meet again in a saner Middle East, as we are all human beings," said the victim’s mother, who accompanied her throughout the six weeks of her hospitalization.
Her mother then thanked the medical team for their devoted treatment and for saving her other leg from amputation. Additionally, she was grateful the Ziv Medical Center facilitated the donation of an artificial leg from a generous private donor.
Israel Daily Picture: New Year's Greeting to Our Jewish Readers
Israel Daily Picture normally focuses on pictures of the Holy Land in the Library of Congress archives' American Colony collection.
In honor of Rosh Hashanna, we present pictures of the holiday in New York City, taken in the early 1900s by George Bain and also housed in the Library of Congress archives.

Rosh Hashanah video greeting reviews: Bibi, Peres, Obama, Cameron, IDF

Netanyahu seems uncharacteristically tired. He does a nice job talking about Israel's accomplishments, peace, Syria, and Iran.

Grade: B+

Peres' message is muddled. He implies Yom Kippur is before Rosh Hashanah and that Yom Kippur is meant to forget our mistakes. This is not a great greeting.

Grade: C-

President Obama's is pretty generic. He loses points for having a jarring edit in the middle.

Grade: B-

David Cameron's is only fair, with usual stuff about the peace process, but his ending about the British Jewish community is nice.

Grade: B

The IDF's message has stunning video clips and shows off the diversity of the army and navy. Pure hasbara - and that's a good thing.

Grade: A

(h/t Yerushalimey, Jean)

Video of stone throwers on Temple Mount today

Here is how the official PA "news" agency WAFA reported the event:

Jewish fanatics who have declared openly their intention to turn al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City into a Jewish shrine Wednesday provoked Muslim worshippers at the mosque when they entered the walled compound in large numbers and under police protection, according to Muslim officials.
I count at least four lies in that one sentence alone.

9/04 Links Part 1: Bibi - We Have an Iron Dome and an Iron Will, Shape-Shifting on Syria

From Ian:

Shape-Shifting on Syria
In 2009, the current administration flattered and cajoled Bashar Assad, returning the U.S. Ambassador to Damascus and partially lifting sanctions on the regime (including on aircraft engines, which had major implications later as the war intensified). For the next two years, a stream of American politicos visited and chatted up Assad; this was the period of the famous "Rose in the Desert" paean to Asma Assad in Vogue magazine and dinner with the Kerrys. They called Bashar Assad a "reformer"and hoped for change.
There was no change, and in August 2011 the Administration demanded that Assad resign, shifting America's desired outcome from an "improved Assad" to "no Assad."
FLASHBACK: Harvard Group Honored Bashar al-Assad's Wife in 2011
According to The New York Times, the Harvard Arab Alumni Association (HAAA) honored Mrs. Assad at a dinner in Damascus two years ago.
Prior to the dinner the group posted this announcement on its website:
We are greatly honored to hold our Arab World Conference under the esteemed patronage of Her Excellency Mrs. Asma al-Assad, the First Lady of Syria, and are privileged that Her Excellency will deliver the conference's keynote address. A thought-provoking, inspiring and tireless leader and advocate, the First Lady's address will certainly be the highlight of our event.
The Democrats’ ‘Smart Power’ Lies in Ruins
Democrats Suddenly Realize What They Miscalculated About the World: Everything
As we await Congress’s decision on authorizing the use of U.S. military force in Syria, Democrats are suddenly realizing that their foreign-policy brain-trust completely misjudged the world.
Being nicer to countries like Russia will not make them nicer to you. The United Nations is not an effective tool for resolving crises. Some foreign leaders are beyond persuasion and diplomacy. There is no “international community” ready to work together to solve problems, and there probably never will be.
Barry Rubin: Turning Point: Obama and Israel, The Next Three Years
It is not every day that one can announce a shift in world history, but this day is today. And we are now in a new era in the Middle East and the world. This is not a joke--definitely not a joke--and as you will see, it is not an exaggeration.
Let me explain. For the last seven weeks I have been in the United States, mostly in Washington D.C. I have spoken and listened to many people. As a result, I am in a position to describe for you with a high degree of accuracy what the policy will be for the next 3.5 years, and perhaps for many more.
The administration has crossed a line to, in simple terms, backing the "'bad guys."
Syria Debate Shows America’s Moral Collapse
Why are we so determined to remain indifferent in the face of men, women and children convulsing to death from Sarin gas? I have no satisfactory answer, but during this period of the High Holy Days, we are obliged, in my view, to confront this question as we reflect on our moral health. After all, we Jews have spent the last seven decades asking whether more could have been done to avert the Holocaust. Could we not have bombed the railway lines to the concentration camps? Could we not have smuggled more weapons to resistance fighters, both Jewish and non-Jewish? Well, yes, we could have done much more, but we also could have done a lot less. Imagine if the current crop of politicians currently dominating the Syrian debate, from U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) to the leader of the British Labor Party, Ed Miliband, had been in office instead of Roosevelt and Churchill. (On second thought, don’t.)
Jewish Groups Support ‘Strong Response’ to Syria’s Use of Chemical Weapons
The umbrella organization representing more than 50 Jewish groups on Tuesday issued a statement saying that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons against his people requires a “strong response.”
Prior to the statement by the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, the White House held a conference call to brief Jewish leaders on the situation in Syria.
“The use of such indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction represents moral challenges that require a strong response,” the Conference of Presidents said.
Netanyahu: We Have an Iron Dome – and an Iron Will
“We need to see to [our] security. This is our first obligation, as well as mine as Prime Minister, and this is a challenge for us because the reality around is challenging,” Netanyahu began.
“In the end, our lives depend on an iron wall. We are building an iron wall, an Iron Dome, and we have an iron will,” he declared.
“These are the things that give us the strength to defend ourselves and also to tell those who would attack us: it is not worth your while. These are the fundamentals that protect the State of Israel. Everything else is happening here now.”
Peres: Assad will Disappear – One Way or the Other
However, he continued, intervention may not be the right path. "War is a very serious business and I would suggest to every leader to think as much as they can before rather than afterwards,” he said, adding, “I admire President Obama's attempt to examine every possibility to bring this horrible situation to an end.”
Peres echoed other Israeli leaders in saying that Israel has no plans to intervene in Syria, but is prepared for any attack. An attack is unlikely, he added, explaining, “If Syria attacks us we will overcome them and that is why I believe it won’t happen… We have one of the best security infrastructures and one of the best militaries in the modern world.”
Report: Syrian Forensic Chief Defects with Evidence of Chemical Weapon Use
The Syrian opposition has stated today (Tuesday) that Abdul Tawwab Shahrour, head of the forensic medicine committee in Aleppo, has defected to Turkey.
According to Syrian opposition representatives, Shahrour is in possession of evidence pointing to the use of chemical weapons by the Bashar al-Assad regime in an attack that occurred earlier this year. More than 20 people were killed in an attack at the Khan al-Assal district near Aleppo on March 19. The Assad regime has previously denied allegations that it used chemical weapons during the attack.
According to the Syrian opposition, Shahrour has both documents and eyewitness accounts proving the use of chemical weapons during the events and contradicting the Assad regime's version of the events, which he intends to reveal at a news conference.
Former Iranian President: Assad Attacked His Own People with Gas
“The Syrian people are experiencing harsh conditions. On the one hand, they are bombed with chemicals by their own government, and on the other hand, they can expect American bombs,” concluded the former Iranian president.
Not only has Iran defended Assad throughout the civil war in Syria, the Islamic Republic has provided him with military support during his fight against rebels trying to topple his regime.
Obama garners bipartisan support for Syria strike
Republican House Speaker John Boehner emerged from a White House meeting and told reporters: “This is something that the United States, as a country, needs to do. I’m going to support the president’s call for action. I believe that my colleagues should support this call for action.”
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi also said they will support Obama because the U.S. has a compelling national security interest to prevent the use of weapons of mass destruction.
Senate resolution sets deadline, bars ground forces in Syria
The Associated Press obtained a copy of the draft resolution that the Foreign Relations Committee will vote on Wednesday.
The measure would set a time limit of 60 days for any mission, and it says the president can extend that for 30 days more unless Congress has a vote of disapproval.
Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez, chairman of the committee, and Sen. Bob Corker, the top Republican, agreed on the measure late Tuesday. The White House had no immediate reaction to the draft resolution before Obama departed for Sweden and then Russia, to attend the G-20 summit.
U.S. Air Force Lacks Preparedness for Syria Strike
General Mark Welsh has said recent cutbacks to the U.S. Air Force have limited it's readiness to carry out a major offensive.
Welsh was quoted by the Journal of the U.S. Air Force on August 28.
Emphasizing cuts including the grounding of tactical combat squadrons earlier this year, Welsh said the Air Force would carry out any mission assigned to it but added, "We are not going to be as ready as we would like."
Iran will not tolerate fall of Assad, establishes joint ‘war room’ with Syria, Hezbollah
The trio aim to provide a coordinated response to any American aggression against Syria or Iran, which Mashregh News said would include counterattacking with missiles aimed at Israel and American assets in the region.
According to the Fars News Agency, Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivered a warning recently during his recent meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. “The Islamic Republic will defend Syria,” FNA reported that message read, “because of its support for the resistance front against the Zionist regime [Israel], and is vehemently opposed to any intervention by foreign forces in Syrian internal affairs.”
‘The fire is approaching’: Syria and its allies threaten regional war
The Wall Street Journal reports that Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shiite militia fighting side-by-side with Assad against the rebels, will strike back at American ships if an attack takes place.
“The resistance [Hezbollah] and the armed forces are now one body,” said a senior Syrian official on Monday. “In my assessment, Hezbollah will side with Syria in certain operations targeting warships in the Mediterranean.”
The threat is not an idle one. During the 2006 war between Hezbollah and Israel, a land-based missile launched by Hezbollah struck an Israeli warship off the Lebanese coast, killing four sailors and severely damaging the vessel.
Hamas dismisses talk of strike by Egypt against Gaza
Hamas officials on Tuesday urged Palestinians to ignore rumors to the effect that the Egyptian army is preparing a military offensive against the Gaza Strip.
“The talk about a possible Egyptian military operation in the Gaza Strip is baseless,” a Hamas official said. “We urge our people not to pay attention to the rumors flying around.”
A Palestinian journalist in Gaza City said that there was “increased talk” about a possible Egyptian military strike in the Gaza Strip.
Five Reporters Killed, 80 Detained Since Morsi's Ouster
Reporters Without Borders has issued a scathing report on the treatment of reporters in Egypt since the removal of President Mohamed Morsi in early July:
Since 3 July, a total of five journalists have been killed, 80 journalists have been arbitrarily detained (with seven still held) and at least 40 news providers have been physically attacked by the police or by pro-Morsi or pro-army demonstrators.
11 Brotherhood members sentenced to life in prison
A Suez military court has given 11 Muslim Brotherhood supporters life sentences relating to charges of violence following the dispersal of pro-Mohamed Morsi sit-ins in Cairo and Giza last month.
The 11 defendants were given 25-year sentences.
Forty-five others were given five years each, while eight defendants were acquitted of charges of assualting army troops, burning military vehicles, throwing Molotov cocktails and attacking churches in Suez governorate.
Iran Is *Really* Good at Evading Sanctions
What is obvious is that sanctions have forced Iran’s efforts to go underground, adapt, and become more intricate as time goes by. Sanctions are successful in the specific sense that the more strict they become and consistently they are enforced, the harder it is for Iran to achieve its goals. It is not enough, however, to simply add companies to the sanctions list. Authorities must rigorously enforce sanctions by going after the individuals and companies who help evade them, seizing their assets, and even arresting and extraditing those involved. They must also constantly update their lists to reflect the ever-changing corporate structure of Iran’s overseas procurement networks.
Nothing is straightforward in these operations, except the Iranian leaders’ dedication to their goal of acquiring nuclear weapons. And whether sanctions will successfully deter them or it will require different measures to do so is still very much an open question.

If Peter Beinart were around in 1929...

(A followup to my essay yesterday.)

FIAT/IFTA-Dubai anti-Israel discrimination update

Here are a few updates on the FIAT/IFTA fiasco where the organization allowed Dubai to ban an Israeli nominee from the awards ceremony.

The FIAT/IFTA website has added some information justifying their refusal to push back against the discrimination:

Everyone travelling to attend the FIAT/IFTA World Conference, no matter if the conference is held in the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, Ireland, Beijing or the United Arab Emirates, must make sure to get a valid visa before entering the country. This is the sole responsibility of the attendee of the conference, and FIAT/IFTA does not have any influence on diplomatic relations between the country of a visitor from anywhere in the World and the country in which the World Conference takes place.
Yes, they do. They have a lot of influence; by exercising the right to cancel the conference and to embarrass the host country into doing the right thing, just like tennis officials did in 2009 after Shahar Peer was denied a visa. Their pressure ensured that Israeli Andy Ram was able to play shortly thereafter:
Tennis governing officials warned that holding future tennis events in Dubai could be in doubt if the Emirates - which does not have diplomatic relations with Israel - continued to ban Israelis. The ATP, which runs next week's men's tournament, gave the UAE a Friday evening deadline to decide whether to grant Ram a visa.

"No player, who qualifies to play an ATP World Tour event, should be denied their right to compete on the basis of ethnicity, nationality or religion and we are happy that the Dubai Tennis Championships and the UAE have shown that they share that view," ATP president, Adam Helfant, said in a statement.
Also after Shahar Peer was denied a visa, the Women's Tennis Association threatened to no longer go to Dubai, and the Tennis Channel refused to broadcast the tournament.

That is what FIAT/IFTA should have done if it had any sense of morality.

Algemeiner received an email from the Israeli nominee, Arik Bernstein, where he was taking the high road:

“I hope that this affair is finally coming to a satisfactory resolution. Meaning that our film ‘Israel: A Home Movie’ will be shown during the conference in Dubai. This for me was the most important element,” The filmmaker, Arik Bernstein, told The Algemeiner in an email.

The President of IFTA, Jan Müller, confirmed to The Algemeiner in an email that Bernstein would indeed not be attending the conference, but rejected any responsibility for his ban.

“Unfortunately, Mr. Bernstein, holding an Israeli passport, is not allowed to enter Dubai, due to political reasons. Neither IFTA, nor me as chairman and any other member of this federation of television archives. (sic) And neither the host of this conference, television company MBC, can be hold responsible for this sad issue,” he wrote.

I also saw from private communication that at least one other nominee is not flying to Dubai for his own reasons, but he expressed disgust at the discrimination against the Israeli filmmaker.

The Creative Community for Peace condemned FIAT/IFTA:

The recent decision by the organizers of the 'International Federation of Television Archives' competition to disqualify an Israeli film is a ridicule of artistic freedom and a clear case of institutionalized bigotry.

It is time to stop the politicization of art. "The festival organizers," says David Lonner, CCFP advisory member and CEO of Oasis Media Group, "substituted artistic and professional considerations with one-sided political ones." We, Creative Community For Peace, a coalition of entertainment industry executives [CCFP] and fans worldwide who have signed our petition [Petition], reject this injustice. We believe art and must be embraced as a tool to transcend political tensions.

Brian of London wrote in the Times of Israel about the fiasco as well.

So here’s the deal. If you hold a major event in Dubai you, your sponsors and your other participants are excluding Israelis (and by Israelis we mostly mean Israeli Jews).If your organisation is based in Australia, as a forthcoming case may well prove, you might even be committing an actual crime!

(h/t David, Jonathan)

Arabs throw stones at peaceful Jewish visitors to Temple Mount

Ma'an reports with characteristic bias:

Clashes broke out between Palestinians and Israeli forces after Jewish rightists entered the Al-Aqsa mosque compound on Wednesday, locals said.

Local youths threw stones at a group of around 40 Israeli rightists who entered the compound, witnesses said.

Israeli forces responded by storming the mosque compound and spraying protestors with pepper spray, lightly injuring three women.
Arabic media has been warning for days that Jews will be visiting the Temple Mount today, Rosh Hashanah Eve. Of course, Jews visited yesterday as well, and the day before.

Sheikh Raed Salah had instigated a lot of the incitement and he was arrested a couple of days ago.

The Muslims tried to form a human shield to prevent Jews from entering via the Moroccan gate to visit Judaism's holiest spot.

Luckily, instead of barring the Jews from their ascent, the Israeli police instead closed the compound to the troublemakers:

Israeli police closed all gates leading to the mosque and prevented worshipers under 50 from entering. They also stopped dozens of buses in Jerusalem carrying Palestinian worshipers to the mosque and told them to turn around, Israeli media reported.
The area was reopened to all in the afternoon.

Here's a video of Muslim women chanting "Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Mohammed will return"  on the Mount as Israeli police very respectfully move them along:

Here is a video from yesterday of a Muslim preacher, speaking English, where he tries to say that international law should leave the Mount (and indeed the entire Old City) Judenrein. He also says that since the existence of Jews in the area angers Muslims, they are threatening the peace. Which just goes to show how many Muslims will happily call to massacre Jews in Arabic but try to put on a peaceful face to the West.

Even UNRWA's own photos show their tacit support of terrorists

 A couple of months ago, an excellent documentary  Camp Jihad, was released, which showed how UNRWA schools and camps are being anything but peaceful when they teach Palestinian Arab kids.

On August 22, UNRWA responded:
In recent days, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) has been attacked after an Israeli film-maker released a film, “Camp Jihad,” alleging that UNRWA promoted anti-Semitism and incitement to violence in its 'summer camps’. These false accusations have been repeated in various media outlets.

UNRWA has conducted a lengthy and detailed investigation into the film and we categorically reject the allegations it contains. The film is grossly misleading and we regret the damage it has caused to UNRWA and the United Nations.
What I find funny is that at the UNRWA website itself, it shows this photo (from a Syrian UNRWA camp:)

Whose picture is that stenciled on this UNRWA school? Why, none other than Yayha Ayyash, "The Engineer," the infamous bombmaker responsible for scores of murders.

This is a photo that UNRWA itself publishes on its own website.

Now, which sounds more believable - the idea that they condone terror or that they are against it?

(h/t Elihu)

9/03 Links Part 2: Peace on paper is not peace on the ground, An open letter to the UNRWA

From Ian:

Netanyahu: ‘While They Shoot at Each Other, We Build for Each Other’
“We have very great tasks in light of what is occurring throughout our region both near and far. While they shoot at each other, we build for each other,” the Prime Minister said.
“Our state is peaceful, certain of the strength of the IDF and sure in itself because it knows that it can defend itself. I will not allow anyone to harm the State of Israel. I ask you to go out and enjoy the holiday [Rosh Hashana, Jewish New Year] and if someone thinks of harming the tranquility of the holiday, he knows what awaits him,” he said.
Netanyahu Lauds Israeli Secret Services
In a visit to the headquarters of the Shin Bet, which is headed by Yoram Cohen, Netanyahu thanked the agents for their tireless work in preventing terror attacks, singling out their latest achievement in apprehending a Ramallah-based Hamas cell that was planning to attack shoppers in Jerusalem's Mamilla mall.
"These accomplishments can be felt in the meaningful reduction of the number of deaths from terror in recent years,” he said. “No one can guarantee that this quiet will be maintained, but the Shin Bet and security services are prepared to continue to defend the citizens of Israel from every threat.”
Attempted terror attacks not news for the BBC
On the evening of Friday August 30th an explosive device was detonated near an Israeli army patrol jeep on the border with the Gaza Strip. No injuries were sustained.
On the morning of Monday September 2nd two more explosive devices were detonated near an IDF patrol along the same border, fortunately with no injuries caused.
On Sunday, September 1st the Israeli security services announced that a plan to carry out a terror attack in the Mamilla shopping mall in Jerusalem had been foiled.
None of the above is apparently considered newsworthy by the BBC.
'Pro-Palestinian' Campaign: Free Baby Adelle's Attackers
Pro-Palestinian organizations have launched a European advertising campaign calling for the release of five Arab youths who are suspected of throwing rocks at a car six months ago, causing grievous head injuries to Adelle Biton, a Jewish three-year-old.
In a large scale rally in London last Friday, protesters called for the release of the “the Hares boys,” as they are now known. The five youths are from the village of Hares in Samaria, near Ariel. The central message in rally was that the youths are being held “for no reason,” because of “an accident they had nothing to do with.”
An open letter to the UNRWA: I’m a Palestinian Refugee, Too
Congratulations! Whereas most other refugee services go out of business just a few years after any war, you’ve not only managed to keep your jobs but also to make your organization, your budget and your payroll grow exponentially for over 64 years. This is an astounding and unprecedented world record!
The key to your unparalleled success is also the reason for which I am writing to you. In virtually all other refugee cases, the goal of the altruistic assistance agencies was and is to help the persons displaced by war and violence to be absorbed into a new country. Why? To establish a new home, to get on with their lives, and to guarantee a brighter future for their children. What a stupid mistake!
Within only a few years, these agencies and NGOs resolve all the problems of resettling these refugees, thus putting themselves out of their tax-free jobs. What kind of business plan is that?!
Peace on paper is not peace on the ground
Despite a 1994 peace treaty between Israel and Jordan signed by the late prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and King Hussein, this agreement has yet to be put in effect in the hearts of the people of the neighboring countries.
As a Jordanian, I was taught in school and at university that Israel is our first and last enemy. Why is this? People in Jordan (and almost all Arabs in the Middle East) think that Israel seeks to destroy them. It is common to hear conspiracy theories asserting that the decisions by governments of the United States, Russia and Europe that have adversely affected Arab countries can all be traced back to the Jews. Therefore, it is logical to conclude that if we stop Israel, or expel them from the Middle East, our situation will be better.
What More Must PA Do to Show Its Disinterest in Peace?
Under pressure from his own party’s opposition to “normalization” with Israel, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas yesterday canceled a meeting with Israeli Knesset members who had formed a caucus to support the recently revived peace talks. Normally, this would call the whole point of peace talks into question: Someone too scared of the anti-normalization thugs to host a meaningless gabfest with Israeli MKs isn’t likely to have the guts to sign a final-status agreement containing real Palestinian concessions. But in this case, anyone paying attention to Palestinian behavior since the talks began already knew they were nothing but a farce.
The following are just a few of the steps Palestinians have taken over the last month to prove their lack of desire for peace:
Bennett: Stop the 'Peace Cult'
“These days, we are discovering what a difficult neighborhood we are living in," Bennett said at the Bayit Yehudi party's ceremonial toast for the new Hebrew year (Rosh Hashana) in Modiin, which was held in the presence of Chief Rabbi David Lau, members of the party's Knesset faction, and 700 Bayit Yehudi delegates and candidates in municipal lists.
“There is one place that is an island of stability – the state of Israel in the Land of Israel. This is the only place where there is peace. I am amazed by the bottomless fanaticism with which followers of the 'religion of peace' want to give our enemies parts of the country," he said.
So who still thinks Israel is the root of Middle East problems?
This tribal and sectarian dispute, which has the potential to become the Muslim equivalent of the Thirty Years War, has about as much to do with Israel as did the conflict between Catholics and Protestants in Ireland. And the peoples involved care very little, if at all, about the fate of the Palestinians – certainly much less than do Nigel Kennedy and Roger Waters.
Yet some western governments still fall for the bizarre idea that if the dispute between Israel and the Palestinians were to be sorted, then this would help to solve all the other conflicts in the region. Thus the French foreign minister Laurent Fabius declared last week, following a meeting with the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas: “The Israeli-Palestinian issue is …perhaps the central issue of the region.”
MEMRI: Rabbi Yahya Youssuf Salem, Head of Jewish Community in Yemen, Talks of Segregation and Persecution

Report: Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda Attempted to Infiltrate CIA
Approximately one in five "flagged" job applicants to the US's Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had ties to either Hamas, Hezbollah or Al Qaeda, according to a Washington Times report.
The report is based off of documents leaked by former NSA agent Edward Snowden.
These latest revelations indicate the high motivation among Islamist terrorists of various stripes to infiltrate US intelligence agencies.
Guardian columnist acknowledges Muslim Brotherhood’s antisemitism
Indeed, the Guardian’s coverage of the Muslim Brotherhood’s rise to power in Egypt last year ignored the group’s long and well-documented antisemitic record (consistent with the paper’s tendency to obfuscate other groups’ extreme Judeophobia), all of which makes Giles Fraser’s recent ‘CiF’ column on the Brotherhood quite unique.
Though Fraser still advanced some characteristic moral apologetics for the group, he did nonetheless include the following:
”And, of course, I have no love in my heart for Islamist terrorism, nor the hateful antisemitism that is often present within the Muslim Brotherhood”
Guardian frames Egypt ‘Spy Stork’ row as sign of increased xenophobia under military regime
Whilst blaming the stork’s apprehension on the current mood of jingoism – in contrast, presumably, to the ‘enlightened internationalism‘ under the Muslim Brotherhood – is itself quite comical, those of us who’ve ‘covered’ previous instances of spy animals can refute the reporter’s thesis by noting other examples of Egyptian ‘xenophobia’.
Iran’s Press TV claims army of pro-Israel propagandists occupy BBC
So why exactly are all of the above (and quite a few more) in such a tizzy? Well the former head of the BBC News website’s Middle East desk Tarik Kafala recently moved on to become head of the BBC Arabic Service (mabrouk!) and his replacement is Raffi Berg.
Mr Berg has been working at the Middle East desk for some time and apparently during last November’s ‘Operation Pillar of Cloud’ he tried to ensure that his colleagues adhered to BBC standards of accuracy by writing the following e-mails:
“Please remember, Israel doesn’t maintain a blockade around Gaza. Egypt controls the southern border. Israel maintains a blockade around its borders with Gaza, as well as a naval blockade. It also controls Gaza’s airspace. We’ve mistakenly said “around Gaza” in a number of recent stories, which has generated complaints.”
BDS head draws fire after defending ‘Shoot the Jew’ chant
An anti-Israel rally at a South African University that saw protesters chanting “Shoot the Jew,” which was subsequently defended by the head of the country’s BDS movement, drew widespread condemnation.
Both backers and critics of the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement in South Africa criticized the group’s leader for supporting activists at the Witwatersrand University rally who sang a modified version of the 1980s anti-apartheid song “Shoot the Boer,” the Mail and Guardian reported Monday.
Some members of the BDS movement, which supports a boycott of Israeli products as part of its pro-Palestinian stance, “made it clear they don’t think it’s a remotely acceptable slogan,” Prof. Steven Friedman, who teaches at both Rhodes University and the University of Johannesburg — and who supports the boycott idea, in addition to calling for a one-state solution — told the news site.
Facebook Fails to Enforce ‘Community Standards’ for Vile Anti-Semitic Page
I was recently pointed in the direction of a Facebook page entitled The Untold History, run by a group out of Sweden that calls itself the European Knights Project, a partner of the Institute for Historical Review. On its masthead, it proclaims in all-caps that it is a “HISTORICAL SITE NON-POLITICAL,” but this is a sham. It is, in fact, a Holocaust denial site that not only presents bogus and falsified history, but also traffics in the vilest sort of anti-Semitism.
Solar Power is the Path to Israel’s Energy Future
The perpetuation of a world powered by oil is one of the most anti-Jewish actions imaginable. A world that resists transitioning quickly from oil to renewables is a world that feeds the Iranian nuclear program, promotes radical whabbiism in Saudi Arabia and around the world, accelerates extreme climate change, pollutes our air, distorts world policy against Israel, and sends American and other troops off to bloody and expensive wars in Iraq and elsewhere.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has challenged us all to imagine a world without oil and has set up within his office a special bureau investing in oil substitute strategies.
Is Shale the Key to Israel’s Energy Future?
One obvious question that remains is, if solar energy can be part of the solution for Israel’s own energy needs, why can’t Israel use solar—rather than develop its shale resources—to help the world reduce its dependence on oil? The reason that approach isn’t viable is that solar can be an alternative to fuels such as coal or natural gas only to the extent that it can replace those fossil fuels for producing electrical power. But because virtually no oil is used for producing electricity in the industrialized world, solar can do nothing to replace oil. In fact, rather than being used for generating electricity, more than 60 percent of oil used worldwide is consumed, instead, to produce liquid transportation fuels (gasoline, diesel and aviation fuel), while most of the rest is used as a feedstock for manufacturing petrochemicals. So, to repeat the point: because solar cannot be used to fuel cars, trucks or buses or as the feedstock for plastics and fertilizer, it is pretty much useless when it comes to replacing oil.

"May Allah help our hackers and mujahadeen"

This announcement of a cyberattack against Israel on 9/11 is actually pretty funny, although it is meant to be scary:

I'm still unclear on who the terrorists are, and who the Illuminati are. But maybe we'll find out.

(I think they are using the "Mike" voice on this AT&T voice synthesis demo, with a little reverb added for drama.)

Coverage of Egyptian helicopter strike shows double standards

The Independent:
Egyptian helicopter gunships attack Sinai militants

Egyptian helicopter gunships have attacked militants in the northern Sinai Peninsula in a continuing effort to control the largely lawless region.

Egypt Forces Attack Sinai Militants

Egyptian helicopter gunships killed at least eight suspected militants in the restive north Sinai, while supporters of ousted President Mohamed Mursi geared up to rally against the government that replaced his.
Egyptian helicopters fire rockets at militants in Sinai, killing at least 8

Egyptian helicopter gunships fired rockets early Tuesday at militants in the northern Sinai Peninsula, killing at least eight and injuring 15 others in an ongoing campaign to put down Islamic radicals who have escalated attacks in the largely lawless region, Egypt's official news agency said.
Notice that not one of these sources say "suspected militants" in the headline (Bloomberg does in the story.) None call them "extrajudicial killings" or "assassinations." Without any proof, it is assumed that Egypt's army is telling the truth, that the houses they hit had no civilians in them, and that everyone killed was an active militant.

It may be true, but when Israel does the exact same thing, the news sources first quote Hamas officials - often claiming that the victims were civilians - before putting scare quotes around Israel's description of the targets as "militants" or "terrorists."

No such skepticism here.

It is true that the jihadists don't have press spokesmen in suits who have cultivated relationships with Western reporters in the area - in fact, there are no Western reporters in the area who regularly interact with the Sinai jihadists and report on how wonderful and hospitable they are.

But that's the point, isn't it? Reporters are only skeptical when the claims don't jive with their own pre-existing biases. Those biases are directly reflected in the quality and objectivity of the coverage we read about.

To put it in terms that reporters themselves might understand: In 2001, George W. Bush first met Vladimir Putin and said "I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straight forward and trustworthy and we had a very good dialogue. I was able to get a sense of his soul." It didn't take long for the media to ridicule Bush, correctly, for his naivete.

Yet that is exactly what many reporters do when they go to Gaza or the West Bank, when they eat meals with the people they are reporting on. They make judgments based on how friendly their hosts are and their reporting then reflects their own look deep into the souls of their subjects.

Sinai jihadists are not much different from Hamas jihadists. But they don't have media savvy like Hamas and Islamic Jihad now have.

Here are the facts: Egyptian helicopters shot at houses that Egypt suspects sheltered militants, killing several people. That's all we know. That's all that should be reported until it is confirmed or disproven.

It's not rocket science to differentiate between facts and assumptions. It is apparently beyond the ability of many journalists, however.

9/03 Links Part 1: Murray - The Syrian paradox, Kissinger’s Good Option, Hezbollah Mobilizes Fighters

From Ian:

Khaled Abu Toameh: Will Assad Unleash His Palestinian Terrorists Against U.S., Israel?
Informed sources told the London-based Al-Quds Al-Arabi newspaper that the PFLP-GC has reached an agreement with the Syrian regime, Iran and Hizbullah to retaliate for a US-led military strike, and that Israel would be the first target of such retaliation.
Hussam Arafat, one of the leaders of the PFLP-GC, said that his group would not remain idle "while Syria is being slaughtered."
"Any Western aggression on Syria," he added, "would serve the interests of Israel and we will stand with Syria and join it in war."
Pro-Assad Palestinian terrorists based in refugee camps in Lebanon are also said to be preparing to "defend Syria against Western aggression." Many of these terrorists are affiliated with Syria's allies in Lebanon: the Shiite terror group, Hizbullah.
Earlier, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad organization also warned that its members would retaliate when and if Syria is attacked. The organization, based in Damascus, has a few thousand terrorists in Syria and Lebanon.
Palestinians in speeding truck penetrate airport security
Additional roadblocks were immediately deployed and, when the truck breached a second barrier — nearly hitting the guard stationed there — security personnel shot at the truck, eventually causing it to stop. The two Palestinian men were ordered out of the vehicle and arrested.
During an interrogation, the men, who hail from the West Bank cities of Jenin and Qalqilya, claimed that they were car thieves, and that they had just stolen the truck in the nearby town of Beit Dagan. They said that they entered the airport road by accident and panicked when they saw the Israeli security personnel.
As the US pledged $148 million to the PA, the PA pledged $15 million to released prisoners
The Palestinian Authority has announced that it plans to give 5,000 released security prisoners who served more than 5 years in Israeli prisons a Dignified Life Grant. The Head of the Statistics Department of the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs, Abd Al-Nasser Farwaneh, said that the amount distributed would be "15 million American dollars." The PA's intention to use "American dollars" for released security prisoners, most of whom are convicted terrorists, was reported by the official PA daily the very same day that the US announced it was giving the PA "$148 million" - "American dollars" - for the PA's general budget.
Abbas on Syria: ‘We Will Never Support the Bombing of an Arab Country by a Foreign State’
“We don’t accept for any Arabic country to be attacked and we condemn the use of chemical weapons by any group. The solution to the Syrian crisis must be political and there is no military solution. We want a peaceful solution for Syria,” Abbas said in a speech to Fatah’s revolutionary council, according to Ma’an News Agency.
Asserting that the U.S. is likely to attack Syria, Abbas was unequivocal in stating the PA’s “position towards it is fixed, we are against a military attack.”
In turning to Congress on Syria, Obama overrules top advisers
People close to the deliberations say Secretary of State John Kerry, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, national security adviser Susan Rice and UN Ambassador Samantha Power largely agreed about the need to use force to punish Syrian President Bashar Assad. While there were some differing views about the speed and the scope of an attack, there were no splintered factions the way there had been during first-term debates over taking action in Libya or launching the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
The advisers, two of whom are former senators, were also willing to proceed without congressional authorization. But on Friday night, after a week spent speeding toward military action, the president made a stunning turnabout and decided he wanted approval from lawmakers before carrying out an attack.
Israel ‘uneasy’ being painted by Obama as potential WMD victim
Israel is “discomfited that both Obama and Kerry mentioned Israel as a potential victim of Assad’s chemical weapons,” Israel’s Channel 2 news reported Monday night. "Israel," it quoted unnamed senior Israeli officials saying, “is not a victim. We don’t need America to take care of threats to Israel.”
Israel’s army, the sources said, was perfectly capable of protecting Israel from any dangers posed by Assad.
Israel shoots test missile over sea, raising alarms
Russia raised a brief alarm in the Middle East Tuesday after apparently detecting a joint Israel and US missile launch test in the Mediterranean.
Israel’s Defense Ministry confirmed that it carried out a successful trial involving a new type of Sparrow target missile, which was meant to test Israel’s missile tracking capabilities.
Douglas Murray: The Syrian paradox
The problem then is this. If any country carries out punitive strikes against the Assad regime they will undoubtedly and rightly be demonstrating the international community’s revulsion over the use of chemical weapons. But if the targets that are hit in the resulting strike are meaningful (government buildings, installations etc) then there is the risk that such an intervention could tip the balance in the Syrian civil war. If that balance is tipped and Assad is severely weakened or even falls as a result then whoever carried out the strikes will be at least partly responsible for what comes next. That is a responsibility which neither America, Britain, France nor any other Western power can handle and it is one which none of us wants.
So – and here is the imponderable – the only purpose of strikes must be to hit targets which are meaningless. As I say in today’s Spectator podcast that means something akin to President Clinton’s futile lobbing of missiles at an aspirin factory in Sudan as a response to the 1998 al-Qaeda embassy bombings in Africa.
Kissinger’s good option
Kissinger believes Syria should and will break up in some fashion — indeed, the independent-minded Kurds have already created a de facto state with a potent military, the Druze have their own militias and Assad’s ruling Alawites, in preparation for a retreat to their traditional homelands should they lose the civil war, have heavily fortified Alawite territory. This break up, sooner rather than later, is Kissinger’s preferred outcome yet the West is misguidedly acting to thwart it.
UK Government let British company export nerve gas chemicals to Syria
The Government was accused of “breathtaking laxity” in its arms controls last night after it emerged that officials authorised the export to Syria of two chemicals capable of being used to make a nerve agent such as sarin a year ago.
The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, will today be asked by MPs to explain why a British company was granted export licences for the dual-use substances for six months in 2012 while Syria’s civil war was raging and concern was rife that the regime could use chemical weapons on its own people. The disclosure of the licences for potassium fluoride and sodium fluoride, which can both be used as precursor chemicals in the manufacture of nerve gas, came as the US Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States had evidence that sarin gas was used in last month’s atrocity in Damascus.
Syria tried to buy banned weapons material from Swiss
Since 1998, the government of Syria made 14 attempted purchases which were flagged and rejected by the Swiss export control watchdog, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs.
Among the items sought for purchase were a bioreactor, an industrial vacuum pump and valves, reported AFP. The State Secretariat’s spokeswoman, Marie Avet, said the 14 rejected deals were worth a total of 1.7 million Swiss francs ($1.7 million).
German Intelligence Concludes Assad is Behind Chemical Attack
The German intelligence agency (BND) has enough evidence in its possession to conclude that President Bashar Al-Assad ordered the suspected chemical attack in Syria on August 21, Russia Today (RT) reported Monday, citing a report in the German weekly Der Spiegel.
French PM Shares 'Proof' Assad behind Chemical Attack
French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault has shared intelligence with lawmakers he says proves the chemical attack on 21 August came from government forces.
The dossier shared with the French parliament today (Monday) reportedly includes satellite images showing a large offensive on the Damascus neighborhood of Ghouta coming from government controlled areas to the East and West of the area held by rebel forces.
The intelligence is said to span nine pages and concludes that “Unlike previous attacks that used small amounts of chemicals and were aimed at terrorizing people, this attack was tactical and aimed at regaining territory.”
Stream of refugees out of Syria passes 2 million mark, UN says
If the conflict continues 3.5 million people Syrian refugees are expected by the end of the year, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said.
“At this particular moment it’s the highest number of displaced people anywhere in the world,” he told reporters in Geneva. “Syria has become the great tragedy of this century — a disgraceful humanitarian calamity with suffering and displacement unparalleled in recent history.”
Report: Iran Thinks Israel is Close to Striking It
Iran believes that Israel is close to stiking its nuclear facilities, according to a report in Lebanese newspaper Al Jumhuriya, cited by Maariv/NRG. According to the report, a senior Iranian official recently visited Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah in his hideout in the Dahiya section section of Beirut to discuss this assessment.
A senior military source confirmed to the Lebanese newspaper that the meeting had, indeed, taken place, but said that it had not been held inside the Dahiya – a neighborhood controlled by Hezbollah – but outside it.
The senior source said that the Iranian official is a military officer and that the meeting was devoted to the military and logistical readiness of Hezbollah for a confrontation with Israel, which, he added, is just “a stone's throw away” from Lebanon.
Hezbollah said to mobilize troops ahead of possible showdown
Members of Hezbollah have “disappeared” from villages across Lebanon, AFP reported Tuesday, citing Lebanese media and witnesses. The report noted that Hezbollah fighters in strongholds along the coast, in the Bekaa valley, near the Syrian border and in southern Beirut had left town, with many turning off their cellphones to avoid being tracked.
While security measures remain in place, checkpoints around the terror group’s nerve center in the capital are now being manned by teenagers instead of regular Hezbollah fighters, the news agency said.
Three Men Charged in Lebanon for Firing Rockets Into Israel
Three men suspected of firing rockets into Israel from Lebanon last month were formally charged on Monday, Lebanon’s National News Agency reported.
State Commissioner to the Military Court Judge Saqr Saqr charged Lebanese nationals Youssef Mohammed al-Fleity and Omar Abdul Mawla al-Atrash and a third, unnamed individual, with shooting the rockets from southern Lebanon into Israel.
Report: Hamas Members Arrested in Attack on Egyptian Police
Egyptian authorities reportedly have arrested 11 people suspected of killing 25 Egyptian police officers in an ambush last week. Five of the suspects are Hamas members, the London-based Asharq Al-Awsat reports.
The arrests took place several days ago but were kept secret for security reasons, the newspaper reported. Three foreign nationals were among the suspects.
A Hamas spokesman denied the allegation, calling it part of an Egyptian campaign to delegitimize the group and justify Egypt’s recent closing of smuggling tunnels into Hamas-run Gaza.
Egypt army pummels Sinai militants, killing dozens
Egyptian helicopter gunships fired rockets early Tuesday at militants in the northern Sinai Peninsula, causing “dozens” of casualties, a security official said.
He said the two aircraft surprised militant gatherings in three houses in two locations, al-Muqataa and Touma, south of the town of Sheikh Zuweyid near the border with the Gaza Strip.
Attacks by Islamic militants surged in the lawless Sinai after the toppling of Egypt’s President Mohammed Morsi in a July 3 coup.