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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

From Ian:

Ambassador Friedman to Jerusalem Antisemitism Conference: The ‘New’ Antisemitism Worries Me More Than the Old
US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman told a packed house at the opening of the 6th Global Forum on Combating Antisemitism that a “new” antisemitism, characterized by “the irrational, deceitful, and insidious vilification of Israel and its supporters under the guise of political commentary” worries him far more than the “old” antisemitism.

Friedman spoke on behalf of President Donald Trump and his administration at the International Convention Center in Jerusalem, telling the audience that “combating” antisemitism is “the right verb.”

“Usually when we speak about efforts to end a disease—and make no mistake about it, antisemitism is a disease, it is a virulent disease—we speak about eradicating it,” he said. “But we don’t speak about eradicating antisemitism and I think that’s probably the right approach. Eradication is probably a bridge too far.”

Citing the passage in the Passover Haggadah that states “in every generation they rise up against us,” Friedman noted, “The authors of the Haggadah did not see antisemitism as capable of being eradicated some 2,000 years ago. And regrettably, today, neither do I. … But combating it is something we can do. It is a sacred responsibility we inherited from our parents and something we must leave to our children.”

Friedman, however, sought to differentiate between what he called the “old” antisemitism and the “new.”

Recounting how the American town of Bal Harbour once barred Jewish residents, Friedman said, “I wish I could say the old antisemitism is a thing of the past,” but “with the internet, the old antisemitism has a distribution channel that the old antisemites … could only have dreamed of. … I worry about the old antisemitism, but I never doubt that we will prevail in our fight against it.”

This “old” antisemitism, however, has been superseded. “The new antisemitism worries me a bit more,” Friedman said. “It is the irrational, deceitful, and insidious vilification of Israel and its supporters under the guise of political commentary. It is just a cleverly repackaged form of hatred against the Jewish people.”

Friedman also asserted that this new antisemitism is acceptable in polite society in a way the old antisemitism is not.
Dershowitz Slams Cynthia Nixon as ‘Anti-Israel’ Candidate in New York Governor’s Race
Attorney and commentator Alan Dershowitz tore into actress and liberal activist Cynthia Nixon on Twitter as an anti-Israel bigot, before and after she officially launched her bid for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in New York.

Before Nixon made her long-rumored announcement, Dershowitz wrote, "Cynthia Nixon may run for Gov of NY. She has collaborated with Israel haters Jewish Voice for Peace and Vanessa Redgrave in boycotting Israel. Do not support her bigotry."

Nixon made her official announcement to run on Monday, in a video proclaiming her love of New York and desire to work on issues like health care, the subway system and mass incarceration. Dershowitz said the responses to his initial tweet proved his point, writing, "If you're anti-Israel, Nixon's your candidate."

According to The Times of Israel, she signed a letter in 2010 supporting Israeli artists who pledged not to perform in the Israeli West Bank settlement of Ariel.

7 Days in Entebbe
A story which has always portrayed Israel’s commitment to its citizens and Jews throughout the world, and had a profound impact on my decision to enlist in the IDF, has been completely tarnished by writer Gregory Burke in his new film 7 Days in Entebbe.

Throughout the film, the PLO terrorists are humanized and shown as moral figures who are simply pursuing the cause of independence from a “Zionist, tyrannical regime.” While barely addressing the decision-making processes of the Israeli government or the military planning of the operation, the producers of this film have successfully revised one of the most prominent military rescues of modern history.

Orchestrated by Yonatan Netanyahu, the operation set out to send a message to the terrorist PLO and the international community that the Jewish nation will no longer be subjected to senseless violence, discrimination and hate. No matter where in the world they are, we will always be there to bring them home.

However, 7 Days in Entebbe has chosen to revise the narrative of this remarkable moment in both Jewish and military history. The movie went so far as to suggest that the Palestinian “freedom fighters” were able to empathize with the experiences of the hostages and claimed to be a nonviolent branch of the Palestinian resistance movement.

From distorted portrayals of IDF soldiers to altering facts to turn “Zionism” into a derogatory term, this horrific film represents the zenith of Israel demonization.

The film not only defames Israel by humanizing the tactics of the 1976 PLO, but depicts both Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin, two historical peace-makers in modern international relations, as power hungry figures unconcerned with the well-being of the Jewish hostages.

From the exaggerated and erroneous accounts of IDF tanks rolling over Palestinian civilians to the inaccurate illustration of how the hostages at Entebbe were treated by the terrorists, the film is intended to convert one of the proudest moments in Israeli history into a promotion of Palestinian “resistance,” meaning terrorism.

The film’s focus on the terrorists and not the valiance of both the Israeli soldiers and decision-makers was remarkably disappointing. This film is a disgrace, an affront to all Israelis and a transparent attempt to elevate the Palestinian cause high enough to pardon the hijacking of a commercial airliner.
Bibi Here Now Review of 'Bibi'
This is Mr. Pfeffer, who’s writing a book about me,” said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to a room full of Economist senior editors. “He doesn’t know anything about me. It will be a cartoon.”
Netanyahu has been proved wrong. Anshel Pfeffer’s Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu dispassionately chronicles the many successes and failures that have so far characterized the personal and political life of Israel’s charismatic yet divisive leader. Readers who are rooting either for or against Netanyahu will find that Pfeffer’s reporting quenches their thirst for the complete picture of his rise to power.

The most critical—though still not cartoonish—elements of the book appear in the text’s prologue and epilogue. It is as if Pfeffer set out to write one narrative but was ultimately steered in a different direction by the fruits of his own research. In fact, Pfeffer’s account is more than balanced; there are moments in the book when his admiration for Israel’s leader emanates through his hard-hitting analysis.

Pfeffer insists that a modern observer cannot understand Israel without understanding the man currently at its helm. The country, he writes, “is a hybrid society of ancient phobias and high-tech hope, a combination of tribalism and globalism—just like Netanyahu himself.” He explores these bifurcations in the chapters that follow.

Indeed, Pfeffer’s work is as much a history of Israel as it is of Netanyahu. About the early Zionist enterprise, he asks: “Was its sole objective to build a state that would serve as a haven for Jews who would choose to live there? Or did the Zionist movement and the Jewish state have a wider responsibility for all Jews in peril?” Foundational questions of this sort foreshadowed many of the domestic debates still riling the State of Israel, 70 years later.
NGO Monitor: Special Rapporteur on Israel: The UN’s Weakest Lynk
  • Michael Lynk is UN Special Rapporteur “on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967.” The record demonstrates that Lynk is unfit to fulfil his mandate due to:
  • Partnerships with organizations that have alleged ties to terror groups and that promote BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns against Israel.
  • Self-admitted lack of expertise in international law.
  • Moral failures, as shown in labeling a virulent antisemite as a “human rights defender” in his March 2017 report to the UN Human Rights Council.
  • In addition to his long history of involvement in overtly anti-Israel events, since becoming Special Rapporteur, Lynk has spoken at eight events with BDS activists and highly political organizations and NGOs that are part of the campaign to delegitimize Israel.
  • It appears that Lynk has only affiliated himself with groups that promote an entirely biased Palestinian narrative of the conflict. NGO Monitor research found no instances of Lynk participating in events that present alternative views.
  • Lynk’s writings consistently dismiss Israel’s security concerns, such as the claim that terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah pose “no real threat to Israel.” He further refers to a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist organization as a talented writer and poet. A key component in the campaign to delegitimize Israel is to minimize and even erase the context of terrorism.
NGO Monitor: NGO Monitor Censured at UN for Criticizing Antisemitic Tropes/Themes
In response to her criticizing the apparent use of antisemitic tropes by a UN official, NGO Monitor Legal Advisor Anne Herzberg was called to order for violating the “sense of respect” during the 37th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Herzberg was addressing language in a report by “UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967” Michael Lynk, which characterized Israel as greedy. Lynk referred to Israel and its role in the Arab-Israeli conflict as “avaricious,” “rapacious,” and “pathological” – unprecedented language that is well beyond standard UN condemnations of Israel.

“State of Palestine” also interrupted the NGO statements to object to our statement.

NGO Monitor will be filing a formal complaint against Lynk for the exceptional language in his report.

In addition to an oral statement before the Council, NGO Monitor published a report describing how Lynk is unqualified for his position as Special Rapporteur. Lynk has a history of working with terror-linked and virulently anti-Israel non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in violation of his mandate. The Canadian labor law professor also admitted that he lacks experience in international law, and his 2016 appointment was protested by the Canadian government.

A March 2017 report by Lynk promoted Manal Tamimi as a “human rights defender” – an activist who repeatedly utilizes violent and virulently antisemitic rhetoric and imagery on social media. NGO Monitor’s complaint was instrumental in forcing the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to remove the reference to Tamimi and issue a revised version of Lynk’s report.
Keith Ellison's mendacity on Louis Farrakhan
In 1991, the Nation of Islam published a book titled The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews, which makes the case that Jews were disproportionately responsible for the slave trade. Henry Louis Gates Jr. noted the book "massively misrepresents the historical record largely through a process of cunningly selective quotation of often reputable sources."

Gates wrote, "Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, himself explained the real agenda behind his campaign, speaking before an audience of 15,000 at the University of Illinois last fall. The purpose of 'The Secret Relationship,' he said, was to 'rearrange a relationship that 'has been detrimental to us.'" As Gates explains, "by 'rearrange,' he means to convert a relation of friendship, alliance and uplift into one of enmity, distrust and hatred." By changing the relationship between blacks and Jews, which was an important force during the civil rights struggle, he argued, the likes of Farrakhan hope to enhance their power. "[T]hey know that the more isolated black America becomes, the greater their power," he wrote. "And what's the most efficient way to begin to sever black America from its allies? Bash the Jews, these demagogues apparently calculate, and you're halfway there."

So that was Gates writing about Farrakhan in the New York Times in 1992.

Ellison had graduated law school in 1990 and spent years as a civil rights lawyer by the time he began working with the Nation of Islam on the 1995 march. So it simply isn't plausible for Ellison to argue that somehow, "After the march, Mr. Farrakhan’s disparaging views on Jewish people, women and the LGBT community became clearer to me."

What we do know is that the open letter that Ellison wrote condemning Farrakhan, which he often brings up in his defense, was written in 2006, which is when he was running for Congress.

In his latest post, an indignant Ellison charges that the scrutiny of his record "is a smear by factions on the right who want to pit the Jewish community and the Black community against each other."

This is pretty rich. Ellison is the one who defended Farrakhan at a time when his anti-Semitism was well known, and worked with his organization after it engaged in an effort to split the black and Jewish communities by peddling shoddy history charging disproportionate Jewish involvement in the slave trade. And he recanted only when it became important for his national political ambitions. Now he's mendaciously accusing others of trying to divide us. No amount of photo ops with liberal rabbis should distract us from recognizing Ellison's true record.
DNC Deputy Chair Keith Ellison Denies Farrakhan Associations, Tries To Blame Trump Supporters. He's Lying.
After mewling on about his supposed record of fighting intolerance, Ellison finally addresses his own associations with Farrakhan:
Over the last few weeks, some political opponents have been pushing the narrative that I am somehow connected to a man named Louis Farrakhan. It’s not true. Mr. Farrakhan leads a group called the Nation of Islam and is best known for organizing the 1995 Million Man March. He’s also well-known for his anti-Semitism.

Somehow connected? Here’s CNN on Ellison’s associations:
A CNN KFile review of Ellison's past writings and public statements during the late 1980s through the 1990s reveal his decade-long involvement in the Nation of Islam and his repeated defense of Farrakhan and other radical black leaders against accusations of anti-Semitism in columns and statements to the press.

He defended Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) in 1990 after Ture made a speech stating “Zionism must be destroyed.” In 1995, he helped organize an event at which he spoke before Khalid Abdul Muhammed, an anti-Semite so rabid that he was kicked out of the Nation of Islam by Farrakhan. That same year, Ellison wrote, “Minister Farrakhan is a role model for black youth. He is not an anti-Semite.” He repeated that claim in 1997.

According to the Daily Caller, even after being elected to Congress, “Ellison attended at least three meetings where Farrakhan was present — including a private visit to Farrakhan’s hotel room — according to photos and videos reviewed by TheDC and Farrakhan’s own statements.”
Ellison: GOP Trying to ‘Pit the Jewish Community and the Black Community Against Each Other’ Over Farrakhan ‘Smear’
Ellison, the Democratic National Committee deputy chair, penned in his Medium op-ed that he worked with the Nation of Islam in 1995 to organize the Million Man March in Minnesota, but that he soon distanced himself from Farrakhan because his "disparaging views on Jewish people, women and the LGBT community," became clearer to him. He then downplayed a report about a private event that he attended in 2013 with Farrakhan and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

"In 2013, I attended a meeting in New York City with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and nearly 50 others where I advocated for the release of an American political prisoner," Ellison wrote. "I didn’t know Mr. Farrakhan would be there and did not speak to him at the event. Contrary to recent reports, I have not been in any meeting with him since then, and he and I have no communication of any kind."

Ellison's account contradicts what Farrakhan claimed during a December 2016 interview, where he said Ellison met him in his hotel suite as recently as the summer of 2016 in Washington, D.C. with Rep. André Carson (D., Ind.).

He went on to accuse Republicans of "smear[ing]" black members of Congress and that they were trying to "pit the Jewish community and the Black community against each other, and distract from the hatred and bigotry on display by the president and the white supremacists who stormed Charlottesville this summer with their anti-Semitic chants and Confederate flags."

Ellison said he has previously viewed questions about Farrakhan to be unworthy of comment.

"I declined to dignify questions raised about Mr. Farrakhan because I know they are inherently political, and are designed to separate me from people who I work with every day on issues of importance for Americans of all backgrounds," Ellison said. "The critics will not be satisfied. They won’t be satisfied any more than President Obama’s production of his birth documents satisfied his critics, or Hillary Clinton’s eleven-hour testimony before the House Select Committee on Benghazi sated her detractors. It’s all part of a larger strategy perfected by a man named Lee Atwater, known as the Babe Ruth of negative politics."
Nolte: 9 Democrat Lawmakers with Ties to Anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan
Washington, DC, lawmaker Trayon White (D-Ward 8) is publicly blaming the Jews for creating the kind of weather conditions that will allow them to “own the cities”; thus, we can again see that anti-Semitism is a serious problem within the Democrat Party — that this hatred is tolerated, most especially, by a national media that do everything in their power to protect their allies on the political left.

Therefore, this seems like a good time to look at all the elected Democrats associated with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, a rabid and open anti-Semite.

Just last month, at his annual Saviours’ Day address, Farrakhan gave a speech where he said the following:
  • “And Farrakhan, by God’s grace, has pulled the cover off of that Satanic Jew, and I’m here to say, ‘Your time is up. Your world is through.'”
  • “Let me tell you something: when you want something in this world, the Jew holds the door.”
  • “The powerful Jews are my enemy.”
  • “The Jews were responsible for all of this filth and degenerate behavior that Hollywood is putting out, turning men into women and women into men.”
  • “The mother and father of apartheid … the Jews.”

This is nothing new coming from Farrakhan. He has been spreading this poison for decades. Nevertheless, here are nine Democrat lawmakers with connections to the hate preacher, starting with a former president:
WATCH: Anti-Semitic Democrat Claims Jewish Bankers Control The Government
On Monday, newly-released footage showed that D.C. Democrat Council member Trayon White Sr. (Ward 8) has a history of believing in anti-Semitic conspiracy theories which comes just as he tries to repair his image after claiming that Jewish bankers control the weather as part of a plot to take over cities.

During a February 27, 2018 meeting with top city officials, White claimed that the Rothschilds control the world bank and the U.S. federal government.

“There’s this whole concept with the Rothschilds — control the World Bank, as we all know — infusing dollars into major cities,” White said. “They really pretty much control the federal government, and now they have this concept called resilient cities in which they are using their money and influence into local cities.”

“How does this influence this? Because it’s really about infrastructure and climate control,” White continued. “What does this have to do with UDC? Have they put money into UDC? What’s the relationship between the Rothschilds and the Rockefellers?”
Steyn on lawmaker's Jewish weather 'conspiracy' (h/t MtTB)
Radio host and commentator Mark Steyn on a DC councilman's bizarre video where he claims Jewish financiers control the weather and controversy over the University of California's list of 'microaggressions.' #Tucker

IsraellyCool: Antisemite Gilad Atzmon Being Sued For Libel
Note how he is trying to expand the list of potential donors to those who are not Jew haters. He even has the chutzpah to ask “peace loving human being who cares about freedom and ethics”, as if any such person would share his vile, antisemitic views.

So far, antisemites like Veterans Today and Arthur Topham are trying to help him raise funds. Says it all really.

For the record, here are the blatant lies he wrote about Gideon Falter, which prompted the lawsuit:
While The Crown Persecution Service (CPS) attests that there has been no increase in anti-Semitism in Britain, in the following Sky News interview, Jewish ethnic activist Gideon Falter, insists that Jew hatred is on the rise.

We are asked to choose between two versions of the truth, that delivered by Falter who leads the Campaign Against Antisemitsm (CAA) and basically makes his living manufacturing antisemitic incidents and the judicial approach of the CPS: a public body, subject to scrutiny and committed to impartiality. This is hardly a difficult choice.

Falter and the CAA obviously fabricate anti-Semitic incidents. Falter interprets condemnation of Israel and Jewish politics as ‘hate crimes.’ It seems the CPS doesn’t buy Falter’s duplicitous claims. Against the odds and despite the treacherous Zionised British political elite, the CPS insists upon defending freedom of expression so that Britain may still be able to regard itself an ‘open society.’
Pro-Israel activist to be tried for threatening Spanish towns over BDS
A Spanish judge granted an anti-Israel group’s motion to initiate a trial for alleged incitement to hatred and intimidation against the leader of a group that fights boycotts of the Jewish state.

The Committee for Solidarity with the Arab Cause, which receives funding from several municipalities in Spain, filed the criminal lawsuit against Angel Mas of the ACOM group last month, he told JTA. A judge examined the 70-page lawsuit against Mas and ACOM and concluded it merited further judicial review, Mas said.

The lawsuit against Mas and ACOM is the first time that pro-Israel entities are being taken to court in Spain for their activities and marks a departure from the strategy of the local Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel, or BDS.

Mas added he was “surprised and disappointed” at the judge’s decision to review what he called “a frivolous attempt to abuse the Spanish judiciary with propaganda.” But he also added that he was confident that he would be found not guilty in any trial.
Academic Boycotts Are Bad for the Academy
Last week, Brown's Middle East Studies program held a "critical conversation" on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and promoted a newly-published collection of essays supporting the boycott of Israeli universities. What makes academic boycotts so pernicious is that they establish one standard of pedagogy for teaching Israel, and another standard for teaching all other countries.

Those who would join the boycott indulge in a rather dangerous solipsism, where the task of education is sacrificed for the moral gratification of the educator. There are those who would say that the circumstances justify the selective treatment, but that's an argument about politics, not pedagogy. Academic boycotts philosophically undermine a liberal education and deprive students of the opportunity to consider all views equally and decide which they prefer.

Four of nine "critical conversations" hosted by the Middle East Studies program have been about Israel. At one of the conversations, a student expressed concern that the panel was so lopsided. The director of the program replied that because his approach to the conflict is perhaps the academic consensus, he did not feel obliged to include views that diverged from it.

When an entire program routinely puts on activities with people who advocate boycotts of Israel - and almost never sees fit to present a contrary view - the pro-boycott position effectively ossifies into an unofficial policy. And that's when "critical conversations" become critical only in the sense that they criticize Israel.
UK Labour party anti-Semitism began before Corbyn
It is a misleading impression that the many anti-Semitic statements of elected or appointed Labour representatives started after Jeremy Corbyn became the party’s leader in September 2015. Even superficial investigations show that various extreme slurs against Jews and Israel were already made years beforehand. The same was the case under Corbyn’s Jewish predecessor Ed Miliband. He led Labour from 2010 to 2015.

This false idea can easily be understood when looking at Corbyn’s past. In 2009 he invited representatives of the Muslim terrorist organizations Hamas and Hezbollah to the House of Commons and called them “my friends.” Corbyn regularly participated in gatherings of a charity led by Holocaust denier Paul Eisen and also gave it money.

Yet, if one analyzes Corbyn’s statements on Israel and the Jews, none meet the terms of International Holocaust Remembrance Association’s definition of anti-Semitism. This definition has been accepted by the British government for domestic use.

One might, however, consider Corbyn a legitimizer of anti-Semitism.

When investigating anti-Semitism in Labour in this century, the first inciter who comes to mind is Ken Livingstone. Already in 2006, sociologist David Hirsch wrote in the Guardian that Livingstone, then Labour mayor of London, “has made a political judgment that it is good for his public image and electoral prospects if he employs low level racist abuse against Jews every now and then.”
‘Three Billboards’ inspires shaming of UK Labour Party over anti-Semitism
Inspired by an Oscar-nominated American film, activists against anti-Semitism in Britain raised thousands of dollars for erecting three billboards outside the headquarters of the Labour Party.

Days after setting up an appeal for donations on an online crowd-funding platform, the Community United against Labour Party Antisemitism, or Culpa, group raised $4,860 out of their goal of $6,300 for the sign campaign outside Labour’s headquarters on London’s Victoria Street. The money came from approximately 100 donors.

Labour under Jeremy Corbyn, the left-wing politician who was elected to lead the party in 2015, has faced criticism over an alleged failure to counter a proliferation of anti-Semitic rhetoric in the party’s ranks.

The idea for the three billboards came from “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” In this tragicomedy, which was nominated for Best Film at the Academy Awards, a mother whose daughter was murdered puts up three billboards, each one displaying one short sentence accusing the local sheriff of inaction. Her introduction of personal accountability deeply impacts her small town’s social fabric.
Former Officials Say ‘It’s Become Impossible to Operate as Jewish Labour Councillor’ in UK
New shocking incidents of antisemitism in the UK’s Labour party have been brought to light by Jewish former councillors in north London, a report in the Sunday Times revealed over the weekend.

The Labour officials reported a series of racist comments directed at them by members of Momentum, the Labour movement that supports party leader Jeremy Corbyn. “It has become impossible to operate as a Jewish councillor,” one official lamented.

Since Corbyn became leader, the Labour party has been beset with antisemitism scandals. Corbyn is ferociously anti-Israel and considered a far-Left ideologue, which enchants his followers and disturbs his detractors.

The Sunday Times report contained statements by Jewish councillors Joe Goldberg and Natan Doron, who said they had been the object of shocking and often embarrassingly vulgar antisemitic statements by the Momentum-affiliated councillors.

Goldberg said he had faced supposedly humorous references to the Holocaust, such as calling academy schools “Kristallnacht.” He was also told he practices “bagel-barrel politics.”

“This is not just on social media,” Goldberg said. “Many members have repeated to me assertions about Jews having big noses, controlling the media, and being wealthy. It has become impossible to operate as a Jewish councillor in the Haringey party without having your views and actions prejudged or dismissed in terms that relate to your ethnicity.”
PreOccupiedTerritory: UKLabour Pushing End To Iran Sanctions To Import Larger Rug Under Which To Sweep Antisemitism (satire)
Prominent members of Her Majesty’s Opposition are calling for the government to disregard a longstanding partial economic embargo against the Islamic Republic of Iran, as they perceive a need to obtain a Persian rug large enough to cover a growing antisemitism scandal in the Labour Party’s ranks.

Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn called on the government to stop adhering to the sanctions regimen, both because of the urgent need for a rug under which to sweep the party’s rampant antisemitism and because he views Iran as a force for good in the Middle East and in global affairs.

“The government cannot in good conscience maintain these unjust sanctions when we have such a pressing call for a large Persian rug at party headquarters,” Corbyn pronounced at a press conference this morning (Tuesday). “With Brexit looming and foretelling untold trade consequences, Britain must free itself of the shackles of the Iran sanctions system. Both countries stand to gain. The people of Iran will finally be able to see their elites and their government’s regional proxies awash in cash, and Labour will be able to procure a quality, authentic rug from Persia with the durability and dimensions necessary to conceal the Jew-hate we’ve worked so hard to deny.”

Baroness Jenny Tonge echoed Crobyn’s remarks. “In fact the entire institution of sanctions on Iran is a Jewish conspiracy,” she asserted. “The best way to combat the machinations of the secret Jewish cabal is to hide away any evidence they might be able to exploit regarding prejudice in Labour, and to do so by supporting the noble resistance of Tehran and the Iranian people.”

“I personally prefer geometric patterns on my rugs, and I’m a fan of red” she added. “Perhaps a nice hammer and sickle configuration.”
BBC News website does stealth makeover on fact check fail
On the morning of March 19th the BBC News website’s Middle East page published an apparently hastily written short report titled “French consulate worker ‘smuggled arms to Gaza'” which read as follows:

A third version of the report has since appeared in which the consulate employee was named and further details of the story provided.

As regular readers know, the BBC has in the past ignored attempts to smuggle goods into the Gaza Strip for the purpose of terrorism as well as numerous stories related to efforts to build up the Hamas terror infrastructure outside Gaza.

How unfortunate then that when the BBC did finally produce a report on that issue, it passed up on basic fact checking. How unfortunate too that those who read the initial version of this article have once again not been informed that they were given inaccurate information.
National Post Headline: Palestinian Terror Attack A Car Accident
Contrary to the National Post’s headline published in its March 17 print edition: “Palestinian driver kills two Israeli soldiers,” this incident was no mere car accident.

In fact, a Palestinian terrorist named Ala Kabha intentionally rammed his car at four Israeli soldiers guarding a military outpost. Two soldiers (Captain Ziv Daus and Sergeant Netanel Kahalani) were brutally murdered in cold blood, while two other soldiers were wounded and are recovering.

Hamas welcomed the attack, saying it “proves our people’s readiness to continue the Jerusalem intifada.” The Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group also said it “commends” the attack and “calls for further attacks against the Zionist occupation.”

This Palestinian terrorist who is now being treated at an Israeli hospital, was previously incarcerated by Israeli authorities for security-related offences.

Israel says the responsibility for this attack lies with the Palestinian Authority for its incitement to violence and efforts to reward Palestinians for committing terror.
Newsweek cover anticipates the fall of 'King Bibi'
If you happen to pick up a copy of Newsweek this week, you'll be greeted by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's face gracing the magazine's cover, in a photograph featuring his right profile and eyes gazing into the unknown future. The cover's headline reads "The Fall of King Bibi?" and is followed by the caption: "Corruption. Netanyahu and the future of Israel."

The related opinion piece describes how despite Netanyahu's spellbinding "performance" at AIPAC, the "King Bibi" status quo is changing. Between numerous indictment probes, a struggling coalition and an increasingly fissured Israeli public, it is not clear what the future will hold for Netanyahu.

According to Newsweek's online archives, which date back to 2013, this is the first time the prime minister has been highlighted thus in Newsweek, though the magazine has featured numerous Israel-related covers,

Nazi criminal Adolf Eichmann's Jerusalem trial was a prominent cover story in 1961. In 1982, the cover featured "The Olympic Tragedy" that was the Munich Olympic massacre, along with a picture of IDF soldiers lifting a casket with an Israeli flag into a grave.

The magazine also featured former prime minister Ariel Sharon three times throughout his life: in 1983 following the Sabra and Shatila massacre, in 1985 when he sued Time magazine for libel and for the final time when he fell ill in 2006.

In May of 2012, Time magazine printed an issue with the title "King Bibi" on the cover and a photo of the prime minister underneath the caption: "He's conquered Israel. But will Netanyahu now make peace - or war?"
IsraellyCool: Understanding And Refuting Alt-Right’s Pseudoscientific Jew Hatred (Antisemitism): Part Two
The Alt-Right and Israel

This is where it gets to be completely bewildering. In fact, from a personal stand point, this is what drew me in to trying to understand these people. It is on Israel that they diverge completely from the vast majority of good people in the US who supported Donald Trump, may well be American patriots and nationalists but have no part in racist nationalism. This group of people, far far larger than the tiny Alt-Right, I can identify with and understand. They were the ones falsely maligned and slandered by the media trying to put all Trump supporters into an Alt-Right, white supremacist box.

In another paradox, they deeply admire us in Israel for establishing what they consider to be the “ethno-nationalist state” they so want to live in. They don’t really understand our 20% Arab minority (and that minority’s Islamic majority) or the ethnic diversity within Judaism. And the Alt-Right seems to stick to learning about Israel from either mainstream left and far-left sources like Ha’aretz and the New York Times or (even worse) outright Jew and Israel hating sites like Monodweiss, Electronic Intifada and individuals like Peter Beinart. If you ask them whether they believe the New York Times reports accurately on White nationalism or subjects they care about, they’ll tell you of course not. Then they’ll show you an article about Israel copied from Ha’aretz by the New York Times and scream at you that it is gospel truth.

Back to Nathan Cofnas’s refutation of the Culture of Critique, we come to an analysis of Jewish influence on top intellectuals. What ever you want to say about this disproportionate representation of Jews in an arbitrary list of top intellectuals, blind, lockstep support for Israel and fervent Zionism certainly isn’t a common theme. So what Jewish interests are this diverse group of Jews pushing?
Thanks to Israeli efforts, EU steps up war against online incitement
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked was set to host a special panel of European ministers on Tuesday to discuss online incitement at an international forum on anti-Semitism in Jerusalem.

The panel members, among them the justice ministers of Greece, Italy, Malta, Moldova and Slovakia, were poised to take the unprecedented step of signing a joint statement against online incitement.

The statement includes guidelines for grappling with the troubling phenomenon and an acknowledgment that the internet, and social media in particular, has aided radical elements in the dissemination of hate speech and incitement to violence and terror.

It points out that such offensive content constitutes a criminal offense, and that governments and individual internet users have a shared interest in making the internet a safe space and preventing its use to spread hate.

By signing the statement, the justice ministers agree to work together to limit the dissemination of hate speech and incitement to violence and terrorism online. The statement also calls on internet giants to take immediate steps to combat the phenomenon, including removing such content from their servers and adopting clear methods for identifying online incitement.
Farewell to David Wyman, the Great Historian of American Silence in the Face of the Holocaust
Wyman placed much of the blame for American inaction then on the Roosevelt Administration. Ten years later, Martin Ostrow’s masterful 1994 PBS documentary America and the Holocaust: Deceit and Indifference, in which Wyman and his work played a large role, brought out nasty attacks from misguided (or self-interested) Roosevelt “keepers of the flame,” along with some absurd speculation that rescue, or the possibility of rescue, was a “myth.” (I happen to be a living witness to rescue’s efficaciousness.)

“I am considering getting entirely away from the Holocaust,” Wyman had written to me a year before publishing Abandonment. It has involved too many years of depressing findings. Furthermore, the nasty fighting among ‘scholars,’ and others over the political implications of the findings is beginning to disgust me.” The challenges soon began to include preposterous assertions that the West—and the Roosevelt administration—did all they could for the Jews of Europe.

But surely, the most challenging question to Wyman was whether a failure of leadership was not primarily a failure of those being led. “In theory, yes,” Wyman agreed. Indeed, he had concluded his earlier Paper Walls with a stinging judgment: the ungenerous American refugee policy then had been “essentially what the American people wanted.” In covering the years of the Holocaust, however, Abandonment stressed the failure of leadership.

Wyman underscored the wartime polls that indicated that while more than one third of the American population was at least sympathetic to the notion of some sort of a domestic anti-Jewish campaign—and another third, typically, had ostensibly no opinion—the final third was ready to openly express its readiness to help the Jews if they were to become the objects of such an American campaign.

On one occasion, being filmed for my upcoming 2020 documentary, And Crown Thy Good: Varian Fry and the Refugee Crisis, 1940-1941, Wyman turned to a file cabinet, and quickly located what he thought was a blisteringly relevant letter, written by a woman in Oakalla, Texas, in January 1944 to her senator: “I have never liked the Jews. I have never pretended to like them, and German propaganda has played no part in the low opinion I have of them. But at no time has my thinking been so low that I have wished them any harm. I have never wished them exterminated. The treatment they are receiving makes me want to help them because they need help. If we can do anything to help the European Jews escape the wrath of Hitler then we should do it because they have a right to live. It is not God’s will that they be slaughtered.”
Yemenites reunite with US pilot after 70 years
More than 200 Yemenite immigrants, many of whom came on the Wings of Eagles operation, gathered in Be'er Sheva to hold a festive reception for Captain Elgin Long, 91, the last of the surviving Alaska Airlines pilots. The American company brought 1, 800 Yemenite immigrants to Israel in a secret operation. Report by Branza. (With thanks: Yoel)

Long, who flew especially from Los Angeles to Israel, was very excited: a Yemenite folklore group from Kiryat Ekron who came to the event in Be'er Sheva dressed him in traditional Yemenite dress and led him by playing drums and dancing to the hall next to the synagogue. Many people, already adults in their eighties, got to their feet and gave him lengthy applause.

"I was a little girl when I came to Israel, but I will not forget the flight. We came in 1949, we arrived in Be'er Sheva in 1950 and we grew up and raised a family. Today I came to say thank you to this dear man, "says Rachel, who is not ashamed to reveal her age.

Captain Long told an amusing incident in retrospect, but not welcome at the time: "As we fly in total darkness, you suddenly smell smoke from the engine room. I went down myself to check what had happened and I saw the immigrant making tea in a teapot that he warmed with a fire, right next to the fuel tanks. "
Classic 70s band America plans October show in Caesarea
The classic rock band America will perform for the first time in Israel on October 8, at the Caesarea amphitheater.

Band members Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell are keeping their promise from 2014, when they initially planned a summer concert in Israel, but canceled due to the conflict in Gaza. They said then that they would reschedule their performance.

Promoter Shuki Weiss began selling tickets on Tuesday, giving priority to those who bought tickets for the concert four years ago. Tickets for the general public go on sale Wednesday.

The band is known for hits like “A Horse with No Name,” which earned a Grammy, as well as “Lonely People,” “Daisy Jane,” “Tin Man,” “Ventura Highway,” “Sister Golden Hair.”

The original band was made up of Bunnell, Beckley, and Dan Peek, three teenagers who were the sons of American army officers based in London at the time.
Adelson Family Contributes $13 Million to Israeli American Council
Dr. Miriam and Sheldon Adelson announced an additional $13 million gift on March 18 to support the Israeli American Council at its 10th annual Los Angeles gala.

The gift was donated in the wake of the couple’s more than $50 million in previous donations to the organization. According to an IAC press release, more support is expected to continue the Adelsons’ bold vision to “build and engage a coast-to-coast Israeli-American community that strengthens the American Jewish community and the State of Israel.”

Dr. Miriam Adelson commented: “When we first became engaged with the Israeli American Council in 2013, we saw great untapped potential to develop a united and nationwide Israeli-American community. Today, we see this bold vision coming to life all across the country. We are proud to be part of this remarkable development, which is bringing the Jewish-American community closer to Israel.”

“The IAC has achieved remarkable progress in advancing its historic mission,” said Sheldon Adelson. “We are deeply invested in the organization’s long-term success and its vision of a coast-to-coast community with Israel in its heart. This is an investment in the future generations of Jewish Americans and the State of Israel.”

According to the IAC board of directors, “Dr. Miriam and Sheldon Adelson are among the great Jewish leaders of our time. Their bold vision, passionate leadership and unmatched generosity have been an inspiration to all of us, and have propelled the IAC’s rapid growth and great success. We look forward to partnering with the Adelsons in the years ahead to further the rapid growth of our community and our donor base, working together to make a historic impact for the Jewish people and the State of Israel.”
Billionaire Elon Musk gets serious at Masada, parties in Jerusalem bar
South African-born Canadian American billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, the CEO of electric-car maker Tesla, has posted pictures of himself in Israel on Instagram.

“Paid respects to Masada earlier today. Live free or die,” Musk, 46, posted eight hours ago, accompanied by a picture of himself standing in front of a hilly and sunny desert background. The post got more than 499,000 likes and a flurry of 5,800 comments.

Musk also posted a video of the Jerusalem Machane Yehuda market, also eight hours ago, saying: “Last night in Jerusalem and the best menu ever.” The post got 184,000 likes and more than 2,000 comments.

On Monday night, Musk posted a picture of himself pouring flaming absinthe in a Jerusalem bar. “Learning how to pour flaming absinthe over a tower of glasses in a Jerusalem speakeasy. Everything’s better with fire…..” he said.

A person familiar with the matter told The Times of Israel that Musk was in Israel to meet with Cortica, a maker of artificial intelligence technology for use in autonomous cars.
Netanyahu: Musk calls Israel 'technological superpower'
Speaking at an event in Dimona on Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recalled a conversation he had with technology giant Elon Musk during the latter's trip to Israel, calling him "a genius."

Netanyahu told the crowd that Musk praised Israel's technological innovations, saying Musk "appreciates what we are doing in Israel."

The two discussed Israel's natural energy uses, and Musk suggested that all of Israel's energy needs may be derived from the Negev, and that the desert represents the future of Israel's energy sector. Solar energy, which is "clean" in that it does not have a harmful impact on the environment, represents only 13% of Israel's energy expenditure.

Musk suggested that Israel could reinvigorate their energy sector "only if they want it" and Netanyahu reassured the crowd that he hopes to see positive changes and adaptation's to the country's energy programs.
One-armed IDF sharpshooter still fights on the front lines — from the US
American-born IDF soldier Izzy Ezagui lost his dominant arm in a direct mortar hit during Operation Cast Lead in January 2009. Six months later, Ezagui took himself off heavy painkillers for phantom limb pain, got back into shape, and convinced the IDF to allow him to reenlist in a combat unit.

With determination and ingenuity, he passed all the required tests, including shooting, reloading guns, unjamming rifles, throwing grenades, charging hills, climbing ropes, and doing pushups. He continued on to commanders’ school and completed his military service with high distinction.

Now Ezagui, 29, has penned a new memoir charting his journey. Titled, “Disarmed: Unconventional Lessons from the World’s Only One-Armed Special Forces Sharpshooter,” it is a candid glimpse inside Ezagui’s mind as he deals with his devastating injury.

Just as the author’s physical, mental and spiritual recoveries are non-linear, so too is the memoir’s narrative. It constantly zigzags back and forth in time and place — not just during Ezagui’s military service, but also throughout his entire life. This choppy chronology and Ezagui’s stream-of-consciousness writing style will not suit some readers. Nonetheless, his honesty and humor shine through.

Ezagui has worked for the last six years as a motivational speaker and unofficial goodwill ambassador for Israel. He’s helped to raise millions of dollars for hospitals, rehabilitation programs, and other charities, and partnered with amputee organizations, schools, universities, and major corporations.

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Gisha, the Israeli NGO that blames Israel for all of Gaza's problems, released last year a Palestinian version of the Willy Wonka story in which the child's dreams are almost crushed by the evil Israeli enemy.

The idea that Palestinian infighting, Egyptian closure of Rafah or Hamas terrorism has anything to do with the reality in Gaza today is not to be seen or heard. No, it is only Israel, for purely arbitrary and evil reasons, that decides to cruelly starve and destroy Gaza.

Gisha used to never mention anything about Hamas restricting movement in Gaza until I shamed them into reluctantly admitting that, yes, sometimes Palestinians hurt themselves. The NGO's anti-Israel propaganda has been consistent and grossly unfair for years. When their own statistics started contradicting their anti-Israel claims - they simply removed the statistics from their homepage.

Now they are brainwashing children to hate Israel as well.

And they get millions from the EU to do this anti-Israel incitement and propaganda aimed at kids.

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The Washington Post. The Forward. Peter Beinart in The Atlantic. All of them are giving the same message: Trump's pick for Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is, in the words of Jane Eisner, "an anti-Muslim bigot."

Actual evidence is scarce. The major smoking gun that the critics point to is that Pompeo is "associated" with Frank Gaffney and Brigitte Gabriel, in the sense that he has spoken on Gaffney's radio show and at conferences that they also spoke at. Then the articles go on and describe how awful Gaffney and Gabriel supposedly are, which is an easier task than saying Pompeo is a bigot.

Because he isn't.

The same amount of effort to uncover Pompeo's supposed bigotry clearly bypassed any contrary evidence. Like this 2015 article in the Wichita Eagle:
Just back from a fact-finding trip to the Middle East, Rep. Mike Pompeo cautioned Friday against equating Islam with terrorism.

In a speech to the Republican Pachyderm Club, Pompeo drew a bright line between the religion of Islam and Islamic-toned extremism practiced by terrorist groups such as ISIS, which was behind the recent deadly attacks in Paris and Beirut.

“You don’t find many Thomas Jeffersons over there,” Pompeo said. “Once you accept that … the line needs to be drawn between those who are on the side of extremism and those who are fighting against them, of whatever faith we may find them.”

There are many Muslims of good will and despise this extremism as much as anyone of any other faith,” Pompeo said after the Pachyderm luncheon meeting.

Pompeo said 11 days ago, he was in the Bekaa Valley in east Lebanon, near the border of war-torn Syria.

He said he met with refugees who fled the fighting and leaders of Muslim and Christian factions fighting against ISIS.

Pompeo said he’s not opposed to settling Muslim refugees in the United States. But he has deep security concerns over the quality of information that can be found to separate legitimate refugees from ISIS agents who might pose as displaced persons to get into the United States and carry out terrorist attacks.
This is a nuanced, reasonable position.

Exactly the opposite of how the media is representing him.

It is irresponsible to paint Pompeo as a bigot without bothering to quote his statements about Muslims that are anything but bigoted. It shows that the media is not telling the truth but obscuring it.

These articles aren't disagreeing with Pompeo. They are demonizing him deliberately so that there isn't any debate. It is the opposite of what the media is supposed to be doing. And it is sickening.

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From Ian:

MEMRI: Palestinian Authority Schoolbooks For 2017-18: Increased Indoctrination To Jihad And Martyrdom

In July 2017, the Palestinian Authority (PA) schoolbooks for the 2017-18 school year were published. Some of the books are new, and some remained unchanged. An examination of the middle-school books for Islamic Education, some of which have been replaced, shows a significant increase in focus on the early Islamic tenets of shahada (martyrdom), fidaa (self-sacrifice) and tadhiya (sacrifice) as part of jihad for the sake of Allah, and their modern manifestations as part of the Palestinian struggle against Israel.

The books present the historic context of these tenets, portraying jihad, shahada, fidaa and tadhiya as acts that that brought the Muslims victory over their enemies in the early days of Islam.[1] The texts include descriptions of the rewards in the world to come, as promised by Allah to Muslims who carry them out. To this end, the books quote Quranic verses and traditions from collections of hadiths that set out these rewards. However, the study material does not present only historical context. The conclusions of the chapters discussing fidaa and tadhiya ask pupils to give examples of them both from the time of the Prophet Muhammad and from contemporary times by Palestinians in the fight against Israel.

In addition to glorifying the sacrifice of life, the books also note other types of sacrifice, such as of property, time, and effort. In a few places, the books also mention aspects of religious tolerance in Islamic tradition.

The books note that PA Education Minister Sabri Saidam is the head of the PA curricula planning committee, and that their content is approved by Religious Endowments Minister Yousuf Ida'is.

This report will review the values of jihad, shahada, fidaa and tadhiya, and the aspects of religious tolerance in Islam, as they appear in the new Palestinian schoolbooks for Islamic Education for the middle-school grades.[2]

Encouraging Jihad And Shahada By Showing The Rewards Promised To The Shahid (Martyr) In The World To Come In The Quran And Hadith

How Much Do the Palestinians Pay for Terror?
The Washington Post's Fact Checker column by Glenn Kessler casts doubt on the veracity of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's claim that PA leader Mahmoud Abbas and his government pay $350 million a year to terrorists, in addition to their dependents and survivors.

Kessler doesn't try to deny the plain facts about the Palestinian budget, which pours vast sums into payment to those jailed for terrorism and to their families, as well as to the survivors of those who died while attempting to commit terrorism. But he does split hairs about the totals allocated, claiming that the PA probably spends much less than Netanyahu says they do.

The problem with Kessler's math is that it is rooted in his acceptance of Palestinian arguments that profess that most of those imprisoned for security offenses aren't really terrorists or that much of the money doled out is for welfare, as opposed to a bounty paid for mayhem. Kessler tries to sell us on the notion that Palestinian security prisoners are not really terrorists; therefore, not all payments to them and their families should be counted towards the $350 million.

Many of those he says are "non-terrorists" or "merely children" were caught throwing rocks. That may sound harmless. But the actions of an American teen, for example, caught throwing rocks at passing vehicles in such a manner as to cause accidents that result in serious injuries or fatalities wouldn't be classified as harmless fun or an expression of a political opinion. It would be treated as a serious crime, and those responsible would likely be tried as adults. That's why the total number of terrorists Israel claims get salaries from the PA is genuine.

While Kessler is willing to accept that a mass murderer involved in slaughtering a family or blowing up a bus or a cafe shouldn't get a pension, the thousands of others who have sought to kill, maim and injure Israelis in less spectacular ways are just as guilty of terrorism.

The Taylor Force Act is an important piece of leverage that can help remind the Palestinians that the world is tired of their rejectionism and violence.
Taylor Force Act Hits Snag in Senate, as Pro-Israel Groups Urge Passage
Amid never-ending speculation over the release of President Donald Trump’s anticipated Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, a major piece of legislation making its way through Congress may have a profound impact on the already strained ties between the United States and the Palestinians.

The Taylor Force Act — named for a 28-year-old former US serviceman murdered in March 2016 while visiting Israel — seeks to cut off US aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA) over its payments to convicted terrorists and their families. However, after steady momentum late last year — including passage in the House of Representatives — the legislation has hit a snag in the Senate.

“A version of the Taylor Force Act passed the US House of Representatives unanimously,” Michael Makovsky, the president and CEO of JINSA, a pro-Israel think tank that has been lobbying for the bill, told JNS. “Apparently, Senate Democrats are more favorable to that legislation, but the Senate Republican bill has fewer exemptions.”

At the same time, while some may support the idea of holding the Palestinians accountable for paying terrorists or the families of terrorists killed in an attack, there is some hesitation that cutting off US funding would destabilize the PA, leading to its possible collapse and replacement in the West Bank with terror groups like Hamas.

Pastor John Hagee, founder and chairman of Christians United for Israel, one of the largest pro-Israel organizations in America — with four million members, told JNS that the Palestinian “‘pay to slay’ policy must end now.”

Fertile ground for Israel hatred
As a member of the French parliament who represents citizens of France living in Israel, today I am ashamed.

I am ashamed that our consulate employees exploited their diplomatic immunity to engage in terrorist activity.

I am ashamed because this affair was exposed on the exact day we marked the deadly terrorist attack at the Ozar Hatorah Jewish school in Toulouse, in which three children and their teacher were murdered in cold blood because of the killer's hatred for Israel.

While my country is mired in an all-out war against the jihadists, a war that has claimed the lives of 250 French citizens since 2015, gunrunning for a terrorist organization such as Hamas is an insult to France and its values. Innocent people could be killed as a result of these smuggling efforts.

I spoke at length with the consul general in Jerusalem, Pierre Cochard, who harshly condemned the actions and stressed there had been no prior indications.

With that – and entirely unrelated to the current consul general's future findings on the matter – this affair exposes the longstanding, rampant pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel atmosphere in the French Consulate in Jerusalem. This atmosphere created the fertile ground that bred the actions presently disgracing all of France.
BESA: Israel’s Intelligence Contribution to US Security: The Cold War Years
Israel and the United States have a long history of close intelligence cooperation. Apart from the regular provision of useful strategic and political intelligence, Israel’s wars against the Soviet-armed and trained Arab armies afforded invaluable insights into Soviet military doctrine and weapons systems. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Israel made a unique and particularly valuable contribution by shedding fresh light on Moscow’s nuclear-equipped intercontinental ballistic missiles threatening the US.

The intelligence cooperation between Washington and Jerusalem is one of the cornerstones of the strategic alliance between the two states. Given the extensive US military aid to Israel along with Washington’s and the American public’s backing of Israel in the international arena, it has been widely argued that the alliance unilaterally favors Israel. In reality, however, the partnership has been bidirectional. From the global standpoint, Israel has provided a bulwark that protects US and Western interests in the Middle East and has taken the brunt of Islam’s Manichean confrontation with Western civilization.

To be sure, Israeli-American intelligence cooperation has encountered some bumps along the road. Thus, for example, Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin did not inform the Reagan administration of Israel’s plans to destroy the Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981, even though the two intelligence communities had signed a memorandum on this issue about a year earlier; Washington responded by chilling intelligence cooperation with Jerusalem for a short while. Conversely, the US, along with Britain, kept Israel in the dark about secret contacts with Muammar Qaddafi in 2003, which led to the dismantling of Libya’s mass-destruction weapons program. Likewise, in May 2017 Trump reportedly shared with Russian foreign minister Lavrov sensitive obtained by Israel about ISIS’ terrorist plans.

These mishaps notwithstanding, Washington and Jerusalem have maintained a strong intelligence relationship since the 1950s. The foundation for this relationship was laid in 1956, when the Mossad obtained the text of a secret speech by the then Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, at the Communist Party Congress, in which he lambasted the tyrannical practices of his predecessor, Joseph Stalin. After the speech was published in the New York Times, the shock over Stalin’s crimes helped delegitimize the Soviet regime among the Western public.
Fuming at US, Abbas calls ambassador a ‘son of a dog, settler’
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas launched an unprecedentedly scathing attack Monday on US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, calling him a “son of a dog” and a “settler.”

Abbas, addressing the opening of a Palestinian leadership meeting, made the comments hours after Friedman criticized the PA on Twitter for failing to condemn a pair of terror attacks over the weekend.

Mentioning US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and his plan to move the country’s embassy in Israel to the city, Abbas said Trump “views the settlements as legitimate.”
American Ambassador to Israel David Friedman attends a meeting of the lobby for Israel–United States relations at the Knesset, July 25, 2017. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

“More than one official has said that,” he added. “The ambassador, David Friedman, said they’re building on their own land. You son of a dog, building on their own land?! You are a settler and your family are settlers!”

“Son of a dog” is a mild pejorative in Arabic, somewhat analogous to “jerk.”

Responding to the comment while at an anti-Semitism conference in Jerusalem, Friedman quoted the insult, using the term “son of a bitch,” and added “Anti-Semitism or political discourse? I leave this up to you.”
Netanyahu: 'The US stopped coddling the PA and it's driving Abbas crazy'
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu slammed Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ over his attack against United States Ambassador to Israel David Friedman on Monday, during which the PA chief called the ambassador a ‘son of a dog’ and a ‘settler’.

Speaking at a special government meeting in the southern Israeli town of Dimona on Tuesday, Prime Minister Netanyahu attributed the Palestinian Authority’s leader outburst to the increasing unwillingness of the United States to accept PA intransigence and tacit support for terrorism.

"We heard Palestinian Authority Chairman Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] make outrageous, anti-American remarks," said Netanyahu.

"Something is happening here that has not happened in decades, perhaps it never happened since the Palestinian Authority was established: The American administration has stopped spoiling the Palestinians. It is demanding from them basic things that should have been demanded a long time ago: Recognize the State of Israel's right to exist, with the State of Israel being the national state of the Jewish people, stop supporting terrorism, and stop financing and encouraging terrorism."

"The Palestinians are in shock and like a spoiled child who has been spoiled for years, they are suddenly being told: 'Enough, no more.' And they are in shock and being in shock they are losing their senses and their truth is coming to light: They are not interested in dialogue and they are refusing to make peace."
Khaled Abu Toameh: Burning all bridges, Abbas sets himself up for complete isolation
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is once again shooting in all directions. Earlier this year, he described Israel as a “colonial project” unrelated to Judaism. Now he has determined that the Palestinians have other enemies to deal with: everyone else, almost.

In a speech before Palestinian leaders in Ramallah on Monday night, Abbas set himself — and his people — on a collision course with both the US and Hamas.

In addition, the address contained implicit criticism of Egypt for its role in brokering the failing “reconciliation” agreement between his ruling Fatah faction and Hamas in October 2017.

Abbas’s decision to burn all bridges with these three parties reflects his increased sense of isolation and frustration.

The Palestinian leader, according to some of his aides, has been in a state of “deep desperation” in recent weeks.

Some say this could be connected to unconfirmed reports about his deteriorating health. Others argue that Abbas’s frustration and fury are a direct result of the US administration’s “hostile” policies toward the Palestinians.
Greenblatt: Abbas Must Choose between "Hateful Rhetoric" and Peace
The top Trump administration Middle East peace negotiator said Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas must choose between “hateful rhetoric” and peace after Abbas described the U.S. ambassador to Israel as the “son of a dog.”

“The time has come for President Abbas to choose between hateful rhetoric and concrete and practical efforts to improve the quality of life of his people and lead them to peace and prosperity,” Jason Greenblatt said in a statement emailed Monday afternoon to reporters.

“Notwithstanding his highly inappropriate insults against members of the Trump administration, the latest iteration being his insult of my good friend and colleague Ambassador Friedman, we are committed to the Palestinian people and to the changes that must be implemented for peaceful coexistence,” Greenblatt said. “We are finalizing our plan for peace and we will advance it when circumstances are right.”

On Monday, at the opening of a Palestinian leadership meeting, P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas called Friedman a “son of a dog” and a “settler” after noting that the ambassador views settlements as legitimate and supported them as a private citizen.
State Department approved anti-Trump articles by pro-Iran deal official
The U.S. State Department under former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson vetted and approved the publication of fiercely anti-Trump news articles written by a current State Department official, Conservative Review has learned.

On October 13 in the White House, President Trump announced that he had ordered a complete strategic review concerning the United States’ Iran policy.

“Today, I am announcing our strategy, along with several major steps we are taking to confront the Iranian regime’s hostile actions and to ensure that Iran never, and I mean never, acquires a nuclear weapon,” the president announced, setting a major course change from the Obama administration’s appeasement-minded policies.

That didn’t sit well with State Department official Sahar Nowrouzzadeh, who has invested much of her career defending the Obama administration’s Iran deal. She co-authored an article targeting her new boss’s Iran policy in an article for Foreign Affairs titled, “Trump’s Dangerous Shift on Iran.”

A State Department spokesperson told Conservative Review that the article was “reviewed by the State Department,” pointing to legal restrictions that highlight the three circumstances in which a State Department employee is denied permission to publish:

1. If it contains classified information;
2. If it contains information not releasable under FOIA (e.g., protected employee information, law enforcement information, etc.);
3. If it is highly likely to result in serious adverse consequences to the efficiency or mission of the Department.

The State Department signed off on an article that directly challenged the president’s policy objectives, yet did not find that a piece targeting his foreign policy could result in “adverse consequences” to the mission of the State Department.

The anti-Trump article was one of several written by Nowrouzzadeh, an Obama holdover who played an integral role in advancing the Iran nuclear deal between the Obama administration and the terrorist regime in Tehran.
Call to UN Secretary-General: Suspend Human Rights Commissioner
Citizens from more than 30 countries around the world appealed to the UN Secretary-General to suspend UN Human Rights Commissioner Zaid Ra'ad al-Hussein after calling Judea and Samaria communities a "war crime", following the latest report he issued regarding the pace of construction for Jews in Judea and Samaria.

"While tens of thousands of people are being slaughtered in Syria, and while women's rights are being disregarded in Iran, the Human Rights Commissioner is issuing a report on the settlement movement in Israel, which details construction information, calling it a war crime", mentioned the letter.

"The Commissioner' s obsession with Israel is unacceptable. We hear his decisions come from anti-Semitic motives, and we call for the immediate dismissal of Zaid Ra'ad Al-Hussein from the position of UN Human Rights Commissioner."

The letter was signed by dozens of supporters of Israel and Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria from around the world, including activists of the Lev HaOlam organization. These countries include Switzerland, Austria, the United States, Finland, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Canada, as well as African countries such as Rwanda, Uganda, South Africa, and Tanzania. Some of the signers serve as leaders in their countries.
UN Official Gives Speech to U.S. Group That Advocates Destruction of Israel
A top United Nations official is facing criticism following a recent speech before a well known anti-Israel organization that supports boycotts of the Jewish state, denies Israel's right to exist, and has promoted anti-Semitic materials.

Elizabeth Campbell, director of the UN Relief Works Agency's office in Washington, D.C., recently spoke before the Jerusalem Fund, a Washington-based pro-Palestinian activist group that promotes boycotts of Israel as part of the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment movement, or BDS.

Campbell has appealed to the Trump administration not to cut funding to UNRWA, the Palestinian aid organization that has long been criticized for employing members of Hamas, participating in anti-Israel political activism, and allowing its facilities to be used by terrorists groups. Campbell discussed the issue in a speech earlier this month before the Jerusalem Fund.

The United States has been withholding more than $65 million in taxpayer funding to UNRWA as the Trump administration considers demanding reforms to the organization or permanently reducing funding.

White House-allied policy advisers with knowledge of the talk told the Washington Free Beacon that it is just another example of UNRWA's biased attitude towards Israel and its efforts to legitimize groups that take a hardline stance against the Jewish state.
UN mission on Lebanon-Israel border marks 40th anniversary
The head of UN peacekeepers in Lebanon praised their contribution to peace efforts on Monday, as the force marked 40 years since its establishment on the frontier with neighboring Israel.

Maj. Gen. Michael Beary, commander of the force known as UNIFIL, said that the mission “works tirelessly to preempt a return to conflict, a return to turmoil and loss of life, a return to some of the dark days of the past” between the two countries.

His comments came amid new threats between Lebanon and Israel over several issues, including a wall the Jewish state is building along the border that Beirut says may jut into Lebanese territories, as well as plans for oil and gas exploration in the Mediterranean.

The oil and gas dispute dates back years, but recently resurfaced when Lebanon invited companies to bid for exploratory offshore drilling next year along the countries’ maritime border. Israel says some of the drilling would be taking place in its territorial waters.

The peacekeeping force was founded in 1978 after Israel invaded parts of southern Lebanon, following a terror attack inside Israel, to expel the Palestinian Liberation Organization that had established a quasi-state there. Violence has broken out on several occasions since then, including major wars in 1982 and 2006.

UNIFIL now has about 10,500 soldiers from 41 countries, who are mostly deployed south of Lebanon’s Litani river and along the border with Israel.
Republican Touts Support From Fringe Anti-Israel, Pro-Iran Groups to End U.S. Intervention In Yemen
A leading Republican senator has been touting support from a host of fringe anti-war groups as part of his effort to end U.S. intervention in Yemen, a bid that has drawn concerns the United States could cede the country to Iranian militias, according to multiple sources familiar with the situation.

The office of Sen. Mike Lee (R., Utah), a prominent GOP anti-war voice in Congress, recently sent congressional colleagues a letter urging support for a bid with Sens. Bernie Sanders (R., Vt.) and Chris Murphy (D., Conn.) to end U.S. military intervention in Yemen, which has been locked in a sectarian battle with Iranian-backed militant groups.

A staffer in Lee's office on Monday sent an email to congressional offices touting support for the senator's effort by a host of groups known for their anti-American pro-Iran activism, including the radical anti-war group Code Pink and prominent liberal outlets such as Daily Kos, according to a copy of that email obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

The senator's effort to tout support from these groups has drawn scrutiny on Capitol Hill, where multiple sources told the Free Beacon that Lee's bid to end U.S. action in Yemen would benefit Iran and erode relations with U.S. ally Saudi Arabia.

Lee has teamed up with Sanders and other anti-war activists to push a congressional resolution invoking the War Powers Resolution on 1973. This would allow Congress to hold a simple majority vote on ending American efforts to combat Iran in Yemen. That vote could come as early as Tuesday, according to sources familiar with the effort.
Dershowitz Slams Cynthia Nixon as ‘Anti-Israel’ Candidate in New York Governor’s Race
Attorney and commentator Alan Dershowitz tore into actress and liberal activist Cynthia Nixon on Twitter as an anti-Israel bigot, before and after she officially launched her bid for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in New York.

Before Nixon made her long-rumored announcement, Dershowitz wrote, "Cynthia Nixon may run for Gov of NY. She has collaborated with Israel haters Jewish Voice for Peace and Vanessa Redgrave in boycotting Israel. Do not support her bigotry."

Nixon made her official announcement to run on Monday, in a video proclaiming her love of New York and desire to work on issues like health care, the subway system and mass incarceration. Dershowitz said the responses to his initial tweet proved his point, writing, "If you're anti-Israel, Nixon's your candidate."

According to The Times of Israel, she signed a letter in 2010 supporting Israeli artists who pledged not to perform in the Israeli West Bank settlement of Ariel.
Illinois Democratic primary pits J Street against AIPAC
A Democratic primary for a House seat in Illinois is pitting a J Street candidate against a longtime incumbent who’s been an ally of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, also known as AIPAC.

The progressive upstart Marie Newman is challenging Rep. Dan Lipinski in Illinois’s 3rd District. Lipinski, who’s held that seat for more than a decade, is known as a blue-dog Democrat who opposes abortion rights and who, in 2015, was one of the few members of his party to vote against the Iran nuclear deal.

The liberal Mideast advocacy J Street group has pounced on the opportunity to unseat Lipinksi, who represents a generally liberal enclave including parts of Chicago and its nearby southwestern suburbs.

It’s also the same district where a noted Holocaust denier and former head of the American Nazi Party, Arthur Jones, is poised to become the GOP nominee for the seat, with no one else in his party challenging him.

Whoever wins the Democratic nomination on March 20 is therefore all but guaranteed to clinch the general election.
Argentina co-sponsors memorial for attack on Israeli embassy
For the first time, the ceremony to commemorate the terrorist attack on Israel’s embassy in Buenos Aires was co-sponsored by the Argentine government, JTA reported Sunday.

The ceremony which took place on Friday to mark the 26th year since the attack also was held for the first time in the country’s human rights center instead of at the site where the attack occurred.

“Today we have decided to remember here, as a symbol that this is a top priority issue in the government’s human rights agenda “said Argentina’s Vice President Gabriela Michetti, the main speaker of the event.

The terrorist attack that destroyed the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires on March 17, 1992, killed 29 and injured 242, in the first international terrorist attack on Argentina’s soil.

The site of the ceremony was Argentina’s National Archive of Memory, where the office of the Secretary of Human Rights is located.

The building served as the Mechanics School of the Navy, or ESMA, and was used by the last Argentine military dictatorship (1976-1983) as one of the main secret detention centers for torture and extermination of political activists who struggled against the regime.

The iconic place remains open as a museum commemorating those crimes and others crimes against human rights.

“There is a paradigm shift in the Argentine State. The attack happened to us, Jews and not Jews, Israelis and non-Israelis, that’s why we are here in this place, because what happened to us happened to all of us, “said speaker Claudio Avruj, Argentina’s secretary of human rights.
Former French Leader Sarkozy Held Over Libyan Funding Inquiry
Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy was held in custody on Tuesday and questioned by magistrates investigating whether late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi helped finance his 2007 election campaign, an official in the French judiciary said.

It is the second major judicial investigation to fall on the 63-year-old, who served as president from 2007-2012. He already faces trial on separate charges of illicit spending overruns during his failed re-election campaign in 2012.

A lawyer for Sarkozy could not immediately be reached for comment. The former president has dismissed the Libya allegations as “grotesque” and a “crude manipulation.”

France opened an inquiry into the Libya case in 2013, after reports by French website Mediapart based on claims by a Franco-Lebanese businessman, Ziad Takieddine, who said he had transferred 5 million euros ($6 million) from Gaddafi’s former intelligence chief Abdullah Senussi to Sarkozy’s campaign director.

Months after he took office in 2007, the French leader came in for criticism for hosting a state visit by Gaddafi during which the Libyan leader pitched his trademark Bedouin-style tent next to the Elysee Palace.

Gaddafi’s first visit to a Western leader in decades, which was accompanied by the signing of several business deals, came after Sarkozy helped get five Bulgarian nurses accused of infecting children with HIV released from jail in Libya.
Police detain 8 Palestinians for not intervening in Old City stabbing
Police on Tuesday arrested eight Palestinian residents of Jerusalem’s Old City on suspicion that they witnessed Sunday’s fatal stabbing of an Israeli by a Palestinian terrorist and did nothing to intervene.

“As part of the ongoing investigation into the stabbing attack at the beginning of the week, it was clear at the scene that the attacker had clear intentions to carry out the terror attack,” police said in a statement.

Adiel Kolman, 32, a father of four, died of his wounds several hours after he was knifed in the Old City’s Muslim Quarter by 28-year-old Abd al-Rahman Bani Fadel from Aqraba, near the West Bank city of Nablus. Fadel was shot dead at the scene by police.

Police detained the eight bystanders, aged 15 to 67, on suspicion that they “saw what was going on and did not act to prevent or minimize the injury to the murdered civilian.” Failing to prevent a crime is itself a misdemeanor, according to Israeli law.
Adiel Kolman, who was killed in a stabbing attack in Jerusalem’s Old city on March 19 2018 (Courtesy)

Two of the detainees were released after their interrogation and six others were to be brought to court for hearings on the extension of their remand.
JCPA: Gaza “March of Return” – The Complete Picture
The avowed tactical objectives of the Gaza “March of Return” on March 30, 2018, are opposition to the policies of the U.S. administration and the “deal of the century,” the U.S. initiative to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The march’s emphasis has been placed on media exposure and influencing world public opinion.

All of the Palestinian organizations are planning to turn Land Day on March 30, 2018, into a show of strength that will express the Palestinian demand for the realization of their “right of return.” The practical implication of the return is the removal of the Jewish population of the State of Israel from their homes in order to absorb millions of Palestinians defined as “refugees from 1948” and their generations of descendants.

The “March of Return” is planned as just the first stage in a series of “return” protest activities that will take place over the next few months, including demonstrations and attempts to break the naval embargo on the Gaza Strip. These activities will reach their peak in the middle of May 2018 (Nakba Day) and will also continue in June (al-Quds day).

Besides Gaza, Judea and Samaria, Jerusalem, and at the sites of protest activities in the Israeli-Arab sector, tensions are also expected to flare up along the borders with Lebanon and Jordan. The “return” protest may cause shockwaves throughout the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, where most of its residents are Palestinian.
Abbas accuses Hamas of being behind Hamdallah assassination attempt
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas accused Hamas of carrying out the roadside bombing that struck PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and PA General Intelligence Services Majid Faraj’s motorcade in the northern Gaza Strip last week.

“We are fully aware that Hamas is the one who stands behind that incident and carried it out,” Abbas said.

On Tuesday morning, a roadside bomb exploded adjacent to Hamdallah and Faraj’s motorcade in Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza, injuring seven members of their staffs and damaging several cars.

On the same day, Abbas’s office said Hamas bears responsibility for the bombing, but stopped short of formally accusing Hamas of carrying it out.

Meanwhile, some Hamas officials suggested on Tuesday that Israel carried out the bombing, while other Hamas leaders insinuated the PA did.

Responding to Abbas’s accusation against it, Hamas said on its official Twitter account that it condemns the PA president’s “irresponsible statements,” asserting that they constitute “a violation of reconciliation agreements.”
Hamas slams Abbas for threatening sanctions on Gaza
Hamas and other Palestinian terror groups on Monday strongly condemned Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for threatening to impose new sanctions on the Gaza Strip.

In a statement issued shortly after Abbas warned of the move in a speech before Palestinian leaders in Ramallah, Hamas said that his “irresponsible statements” were aimed at “bringing our people in the Gaza Strip to their knees at this difficult and dangerous phase.”

In his address, Abbas announced that he had decided to take “legal, national and financial measures” against Hamas to “protect the Palestinian national project.” He did not provide further details.

Last year, Abbas imposed a series of measures against the Gaza Strip that included suspending Palestinian Authority payments to Israel for electricity supplies to the coastal enclave. Abbas also cut off salaries to thousands of Gaza’s civil servants and forced many others into early retirement.

Trump’s Nowruz Greeting Slams Iranian Theocracy
President Donald Trump offered a Nowruz greeting to people around the world welcoming the start of spring while also blasting Iranian theocracy, terror sponsorship and corruption in a statement Monday.

Nowruz is the name for the Persian New Year.

"The history of Nowruz is rooted in Iran, where for millennia a proud nation has overcome great challenges by the strength of its culture and the resilience of its people," Trump said. "Today, the Iranian people face another challenge: rulers who serve themselves instead of serving the people."

"Twenty-five centuries ago, Darius the Great asked God to protect Iran from three dangers: hostile armies, drought, and falsehood. Today, the Iranian regime’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) represents all three."

Trump has referred to the IRGC as "the Iranian supreme leader’s corrupt personal terror force."
Germany presses Iran to recognize Israel's right to exist
Europe is stepping up the pressure on Iran in an effort to mollify the United States and keep it from backing out of the 2015 nuclear deal.

U.S. President Donald Trump delivered an ultimatum to the European signatories to the deal on Jan. 12, saying they must agree to "fix the terrible flaws of the Iran nuclear deal" or he would refuse to extend U.S. sanctions relief to Iran.

U.S. sanctions will resume unless Trump issues fresh "waivers" to suspend them on May 12.

A German government spokesman on Monday demanded that Iran renounce its policy toward Israel and recognize its existence and halt its anti-Semitic and anti-Israel activities. The demand was made just one hour after EU foreign ministers gathered in Brussels to discuss the imposition of new sanctions on Iran as a result of its activities in the various conflicts across the Middle East and the continuing development of its missile program.

While former German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel had called on Iran recognize Israel's right to exist following the signing of the 2015 accord, there was never any explicit demand from Iran to do so.

Three of the European signatories to the Iran nuclear deal – Germany, France and Britain – called for new sanctions on Iran last week in an effort to postpone the imposition of U.S. sanctions on Iran and prevent the accord from being jeopardized.
Iran denies Saudi allegations of harboring bin Laden's son
Tehran denied on Tuesday allegations made by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that Iran was harboring Osama bin Laden's son and supporting him as the new leader of al Qaeda.

Decades-old animosity between Sunni Muslim kingdom of Saudi Arabia and revolutionary Shi'ite Iran has deepened in recent years as the two sides wage proxy wars in the Middle East and beyond, including in Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

Iran's murky and fluid relationship with al Qaeda has contributed to tensions with Riyadh, which previously accused Tehran of backing al Qaeda and sheltering its members.

Prince Mohammed told CBS in an interview that Iran was protecting al Qaeda operatives, including some of bin Laden's relatives.

"This includes the son of Osama bin Laden, the new leader of al Qaeda. He lives in Iran and works out of Iran. He is supported by Iran," he said. Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi called crown prince's comments a "big lie."
Russia Blocks U.N. Security Council Meeting on Human Rights in Syria
Russia on Monday blocked a meeting of the United Nations Security Council to discuss the human rights situation in Syria.

"We do not see any justification for this meeting since human rights is not a subject on the agenda of the security council," said Gennady Kuzmin, deputy permanent representative of Russia to the United Nations.

Russia is the largest international backer of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

France and six other members had called for the meeting, which was expected to include a briefing from Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.

"Our council needs to have all necessary information to understand the crisis that it is examining, including those pertaining to human rights. And this is particularly the case in Syria," said French U.N. ambassador Francois Delattre.

Kuzmin asked for a procedural vote and only eight delegations voted in favor of having the meeting, one short of the number required.

China, Bolivia and Kazakhstan voted with Russia to prevent the meeting, while Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea and Ethiopia were abstentions.
Middle Eastern Observers Certify Russian Elections (satire)
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s landslide re-election complied with international standards, according to election monitors from across the Middle East.

“In polling stations throughout the country, Russian voters were free to cast their ballots without fear of intimidation or retribution,” Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said in a statement. “Votes were counted thoroughly and accurately by disinterested parties, and the results reflect the will of the people.”

Egypt’s Abdel Fattah el-Sisi echoed Assad’s statement, adding that the leadup to the election also allowed for a perfectly competitive election environment.

“When it comes to freedom of the press and rights of the opposition,” Sisi noted, “the Russian system is worthy of emulation.”

Following the certification, US President Donald Trump has invited observers from the region to monitor the 2018 Congressional midterms.

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