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Saturday, February 28, 2015

From Al Monitor, a story that has been picked up by French media in recent days:

Pregnancies significantly changed Safa Ahmad's physical appearance, which began to affect her marriage and cause her psychological problems. About five months ago, Safa, a 28-year-old living in Gaza City, had breast implants in the hope they would help her feel better psychologically and improve things at home.

“My husband wanted to marry someone else because of the changes in my looks after I gave birth to three sons," she told Al-Monitor. "But by coincidence, I heard about cosmetic surgeries in Gaza, and I suggested to my husband that I have one. He immediately agreed, so I got silicon breast implants, and they drastically changed my looks as well as my marital and family life. My husband then let go of the idea of marrying someone else.”

It's not only women in Gaza getting cosmetic surgery. Men are also having it. Ahmad Hassan, 32, felt stuck in life after a number of girls rejected his proposals of marriage because wrinkles on his face made him look like a man in his 50s.

“I had cosmetic surgery to remove the wrinkles covering my face so I could have a normal life and find a girl who accepts me. Dozens of girls rejected me before I had the wrinkles removed," he told Al-Monitor. "About two weeks after the operation, I was in a relationship.”

[Dr. Salah Zaanin, a cosmetic and laser surgery consultant,] said that the most common procedures in Gaza are liposuction, breast augmentation and “tummy tucks” for women. Tightening eyelids and removing bags under the eyes are popular as well. “In the past month, using Botox to fill and remove wrinkles in men and women rose by 600% in my clinic, indicating that despite the blockade and the stress, we are trying to be happy by looking better," Zaanin said. "In addition, there has been a 300% increase in lip augmentation and beautification.”

The economy, of course, still plays a role in the demand for certain types of operations even with the prices in Gaza being low compared to other countries. Zaanin said that the fees for cosmetic surgeries in the Gaza Strip are the lowest in the world and that they depend on the materials used in a procedure. “Cosmetic surgeries range in price from $1,000 to $2,000, while nonsurgical [silicon injections] cost up to $300," Zaanin said. "Therefore, all social classes are resorting to cosmetic surgery. For example, the poor opt for low-priced operations. Everyone should have the right to enjoy and live life, and I feel happy when I can make that happen for someone.”
But from the media I thought that all Gazans were homeless, jobless and starving!

(h/t Rudi)

Posted By Elder of Ziyon to Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News at 2/28/2015 09:00:00 PM
From Ian:

Europe Without Jews?
Even if many Muslims came to Europe seeking economic opportunity, they are often defined as victims of racism and oppression. So, the thinking goes, if you are a victim of racism and oppression, how can you be racist yourself?
The Palestinians repeat almost daily that they would like to kill the Israelis, while the Israelis say they would like peace. What follows are usually bitter, politically-motivated denunciations of Israel by Europe, masquerading as human rights.
Despite the increasingly savage state of the world and an openly genocidal Iran -- soon to be nuclear, if it is not already -- Israeli leaders remain the ones Europeans love to accuse, hate and demonize.
The terrorist attacks are denounced by journalists and political leaders, but their denunciations always sound sanctimonious and thin, condemning the "anti-Semitism" they themselves have been encouraging.
In Europe today, slandering Israel is widely conveyed by European Muslims, and if a political leader or journalist does not agree with what they say, he must be a racist.
There are now 44 million Muslims in Europe.
Ben Shapiro: First They Came for the Jews
President Obama does not stand up for Jews murdered by Islamic Terrorists. President Obama does not stand up for Christians murdered by Islamic Terrorists. Is there anyone President Obama will stand up for? Ben Shapiro explains why the answer is probably 'no.'
After a Muslim terrorist shot up a kosher supermarket in the hours after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, President Obama spoke out. He said:
It is entirely legitimate for the American people to be deeply concerned when you've got a bunch of violent, vicious zealots who behead people or randomly shoot a bunch of folks in a deli in Paris.
Randomly. Obviously, the shooting of Jews in a kosher supermarket was not random. In fact, we have proof: the shooter called the media and stated, “I targeted them because they were Jewish.”
Why didn’t Obama acknowledge the reality of Islamic anti-Semitism? Because were he to do so, he would have to acknowledge that Israel is right and its enemies are wrong, that no territorial concessions would buy off Muslim religious fanatics. He would have to realize that whether radical Muslims attack Jews in Jerusalem or in Paris, they’re attacking Jews, not stand-ins for Israel.
Ben Shapiro: First They Came for the Jews

Why Bibi’s Speech Matters
The emerging nuclear deal with Iran is indefensible. The White House knows it. That is why President Obama does not want to subject an agreement to congressional approval, why critics of the deal are dismissed as warmongers, and why the president, his secretary of state, and his national security adviser have spent several weeks demonizing the prime minister of Israel for having the temerity to accept an invitation by the U.S. Congress to deliver a speech on a subject of existential import for his small country. These tactics distract public attention. They turn a subject of enormous significance to American foreign policy into a petty personal drama. They prevent us from discussing what America is about to give away.
And America is about to give away a lot. This week the AP reported on what an agreement with Iran might look like: sanctions relief in exchange for promises to slow down Iranian centrifuges for 10 years. At which point the Iranians could manufacture a bomb—assuming they hadn’t produced one in secret. Iran would get international legitimacy, assurance that military intervention was not an option, and no limitations on its ICBM programs, its support for international terrorism, its enrichment of plutonium, its widespread human rights violations, and its campaign to subvert or co-opt Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, and Syria. Then it can announce itself as the first Shiite nuclear power.
And America? Liberals would flatter themselves for avoiding a war. Obama wouldn’t have to worry about the Iranians testing a nuke for the duration of his presidency. And a deal would be a step toward the rapprochement with Iran that he has sought throughout his years in office. The EU representative to the talks, for example, says a nuclear agreement “could open the way for a normal diplomatic relation” between Iran and the West, and could present “the opportunity for shaping a different regional framework in the Middle East.” A regional framework, let it be said, that would leave American interests at risk, Israel one bomb away from a second Holocaust, nuclear proliferation throughout the Middle East, and Islamic theocrats in charge of a large part of a strategic and volatile region.
I feel safer already.

Senate Unanimously Welcomes Netanyahu to America
The Senate on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution welcoming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to America and endorsing his speech before a joint session of Congress.
Critics of the Obama administration view the unanimous approval as a rebuke to the White House and Democrats, who have vowed to boycott Netanyahu’s address and work to counter his warnings about the dangers of a nuclear Iran.
No Senate Democrats sponsored the measure, which attracted 50 Republican cosponsors. However, none attempted to block its passage, signaling that support for Israel and Netanyahu’s message has outweighed a pressure campaign by the Obama administration to sabotage the address.
“The Senate warmly welcomes the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, on his visit to the United States, which provides a timely opportunity to reinforce the United State-Israel relationship,” the resolution states.
Congress “eagerly awaits the address of Prime Minister Netanyahu before a joint meeting of the United States Congress,” it continues.
More Have Favorable Opinion of Netanyahu than Unfavorable Opinion
More Americans view Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu favorably than unfavorably, a new Pew Research Center poll shows.
Thirty-eight percent of Americans have a favorable opinion of Netanyahu.
This is in contrast to just 27 percent who have an unfavorable opinion of Netanyahu. Thirty-five percent have no opinion of the Israeli leader.
Additionally, more Americans (48 percent) say the level of U.S. support for Israel is “about right.” Twenty-nine percent say the United States is not supportive enough of the country. Eighteen percent say the United States is too supportive of Israel.
Gutfeld Slams Bill Nye 'The Denial Guy' for Comments on Anti-Semitism in Europe
On "The Five" tonight, Greg Gutfeld blasted Bill Nye “The Science Guy” for suggesting on Bill Maher’s show that Jews fleeing Europe should stay and “get to know your neighbors.”
"So, the cure for anti-Semitism is for Jews to get to know their neighbors?" Gutfeld asked. "Maybe bring them some matzo ball soup?"
Gutfeld pointed out that it's not radical Jews storming Muslim cafes and killing innocent customers.
"The science is settled: Jews are the leading target of abuse and attack here and in Europe," Gutfeld said. "And new research finds that 27 percent of British Muslims sympathized with Paris gunmen. Nye's pithy denial minimizes such evil."
Greg Gutfeld Slams Bill Nye 'The Denial Guy' for Comments on Anti-Semitism in Europe

Brendan O'Neill: MI5 didn’t make Jihadi John; he made himself
A lot of liberal observers blamed the 7/7 attack on Blair, on Iraq, as if those four guys had no choice but to strap bombs to their backs and murder their fellow citizens; as if they were less than human, attack dogs effectively, programmed to go off by forces beyond their ken or control. In 2013, Glenn Greenwald described various acts of terrorism in the West, from the Boston marathon attack to the failed underwear bombing of a plane, as ‘the inevitable outcome’ of Western wars in the Muslim world. Inevitable? Wow. So those bomb-planters and aspiring mass killers of airplane passengers couldn’t have stopped themselves? Put their weapons down? Seems not. Seems that, for some reason, they lacked the powers of reasoning enjoyed by Greenwald and others, and did their disgusting deeds as ‘inevitably’ as a lemming leaping off a cliff.
This apologism for jihadists presents itself as cool and caring. Those who weep for the beautiful men made murderous by MI5 / Blair / Homeland’s portrayal of Muslims believe they ooze sympathy for the beleaguered Muslims of the modern West. In truth, they practise inverted bigotry. They promote a view of Muslims as so child-like, so suggestible, so bereft of the moral agency us non-Muslims are lucky enough to possess, that they can be propelled into bloodlust and bomb-making by the merest slight or hint of harassment or TV images of American airplanes bombing Baghdad. They slam the West for allegedly painting all Muslims as evil (which the West doesn’t do), but you know what’s worse? Depicting Muslims as being incapable of evil, as lacking the ability to make conscious moral judgements and to decide whether to do good or bad, and instead holding them up as pathetic creatures driven to do this or that by their surroundings, as if they were cells in a petri dish slavishly responding to the lab technician’s stimuli.
It would indeed be bigoted to say all Muslims do wicked things; it’s equally bigoted to absolve them of sentient culpability when they actually do wicked things. MI5 didn’t make Jihadi John; he made himself, through making conscious and profoundly immoral choices for which he, like all adult humans who err, sin or kill, must be held solely responsible.
Three decades of US lies about Jonathan Pollard unmasked
Those who have opposed relief for Pollard have asserted that the VIS merely describes what could be shared with the public, and that grave damage to US national security is documented in the secret Weinberger Declaration. This has now been proven false. The Weinberger Declaration is merely a more detailed version of the VIS.
The revelations also dovetail closely with the disclosures in another recently declassified document, a 1987 CIA study of the Pollard case. The CIA study concludes that Pollard supplied Israel with information regarding Arab and Pakistani nuclear intelligence, Arab military capability and weaponry (including biological and chemical weapons), Soviet advisers in Syria and Soviet training of Syrian personnel, the PLO’s Force 17, and a radio signal notation manual requested by Israel to help in the decryption of intercepted communications of Soviet military advisers in Damascus.
Tellingly, the CIA study specifically states that Israel never requested information from Pollard concerning “US military activities, plans, capabilities, or equipment.” Thus, both recently disclosed government documents, as well as the VIS, point to the same conclusion: Pollard’s activities may have ruffled feathers in the Middle East, but there was no material impact on US national security.
The government’s unconscionable deception has deprived Pollard of his freedom for too many years. The document brandished by the government to implement its scheme, hidden from scrutiny until now, has finally been exposed for what it is: a description of a brief, long-forgotten blip in foreign relations, not a frightening exposition of unprecedented harm to US national security.
After nearly three decades, in light of the government’s perfidy, the only conceivable way to provide a belated measure of justice is to end Pollard’s incarceration immediately. President Barack Obama has the solemn duty to uphold the law of the land by finally putting a stop to this ongoing travesty. There are no more excuses. The president should exercise his constitutional power and grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard.
Kerry Rewrites History
Is it possible that American journalists are so ignorant of the recent past that they have failed to remark upon John Kerry’s scandalous rewriting of history in his attack upon Israeli prime minister Netanyahu during his congressional testimony on Wednesday (February 25)? To illustrate Netanyahu’s poor political judgment Kerry angrily alleged that the Israeli PM may be wrong about Iran’s nuclear program and intentions, just as he had been wrong in 2003 in his support of the invasion of Iraq—“and you remember how that turned out,” he sarcastically added.
Apparently Mr. Kerry takes his views of history from people who blame Israel for every misery on the planet except avian flu. Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, for example, blamed Israel for talking President Bush into that invasion, though even those two conspiracy theorists knew that Ariel Sharon, not Netanyahu, was PM at the time. In 2007 Lawrence Wilkerson, a member of the US State Department’s policy planning staff and later chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell, said that “the Israelis were telling us Iraq is not the enemy—Iran is the enemy.” He added that a large number of Israeli officials had told their American counterparts that “if you are going to destabilize the balance of power, do it against the main enemy,[and] not be distracted by Iraq and Saddam Hussein.” Wilkerson noted that these urgings of the Israeli officials were triggered by reports in December 2001 that the Bush administration was seriously planning an attack on Iraq. In the weeks preceding Sharon’s meeting with Bush on February 7, 2002, numerous Israeli officials told the Bush administration that Iran was a far greater threat to America and to everybody else than Iraq.
I suppose we should be grateful that Mr. Kerry has not (yet) blamed Israel for global warming, his chief hobby-horse.
US official sets out ‘bottom lines’ for Iran deal
Washington had stuck to its guns that it wanted a “good deal” and had agreed to several extensions of the negotiations “because we have held firm to certain bottom lines,” a senior US administration official said.
“We will only accept an agreement that cuts off the different pathways to the fissile material that Iran needs for a nuclear weapon,” the official stressed.
US Secretary of State John Kerry will leave at the weekend for Switzerland, where he will meet once again with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif.
The pace and intensity of the talks have sped up as global powers gathered under the P5+1 group have been seeking a deal with Iran to stop it acquiring a nuclear weapon — something Tehran denies trying to do.
A March 31 deadline for a political framework for the deal is looming with negotiators saying they will aim to pin down the final technical details by June 30.
US-Iran Nuclear Deal May Be Dead On Arrival And Should Be
The most recent talks in Geneva between US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif may have completed a major step toward a landmark nuclear accord that the Obama Administration believes will diminish Tehran's pathways to a nuclear weapon. The potential deal, as reported by the AP and The New York Times, would impose uranium stockpile and enrichment limitations on Iran, and Tehran would have to submit to a restrictive verification and inspection regime for a period of 10 to 15 years. In return, sanctions on Iran would be lifted, and its status as a uranium-enriching nation would be prescribed under international law.
Israeli Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz stated , however, that if the emerging US - Iran nuclear agreement did not include measures preventing any nuclear cooperation with North Korea or other rogue states, it would be meaningless, referring to North Korea's previous clandestine and illegal nuclear projects in Syria - "We all know that Iran, Syria and North Korea are very close to each other," he said.
Yet the Obama Administration appears to ignore this potential loophole in order to conclude an agreement acceptable to Iran. Unless specifically prohibited and enforced within the terms and conditions, Tehran may attempt to sidestep the protocols by "outsourcing'" parts of the bomb production process to North Korea, Iran's long-term partner on everything from launch missiles to guidance systems to nuclear war head technology and other required components.
Senators unveil new bill challenging Obama on Iran
A bipartisan group of senators unveiled legislation Friday that would require a congressional review of any deal the Obama administration and other western powers strike with Iran on its nuclear program.
The measure would mandate that President Barack Obama submit the text of any pact to Congress and bar the administration from suspending congressional sanctions on Iran for 60 days. In that time, Congress would hold hearings and have a chance to approve, disapprove or take no action on the agreement.
The legislation is a fresh challenge to Obama’s authority as the United States and other nations engage in negotiations with Iran over its nuclear capability. It is likely to draw a veto threat.
Leading the effort on the measure are Sens. Bob Corker of Tennessee and Bob Menendez of New Jersey, the chairman and top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Rubio slams Obama’s ‘lack of support for Israel’
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio criticized President Barack Obama’s foreign policy for not being sufficiently supportive of Israel. The Obama administration and its allies are in negotiations with Iran to curb Tehran’s nuclear program, an effort that Rubio said was destined to fail.
“It is a foreign policy that treats the ayatollah of Iran with more respect than the prime minister of Israel,” Rubio, speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference, said.
At the conference, the Republican Party’s leading presidential contenders on Friday promised conservative activists they would pursue aggressive military action to prevent the spread of global terrorism, including a renewed use of ground forces in the Middle East.
Jeb Bush says Obama’s foreign policies ‘catastrophic’
Former Florida governor Jeb Bush called US President Barack Obama’s foreign policy “catastrophic” on Friday and said Washington was wrong to clash with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his planned speech to Congress next week, in an interview with daily newspaper Israel Hayom.
In the interview, published only in Hebrew, the Republican politician — considering a run for the presidency in 2016 — placed the blame for the sorry state of relations between Washington and Jerusalem squarely on the Obama administration.
“President Obama’s foreign policy is a catastrophe,” he said. “There aren’t many places in the world you can point to and say — things have gotten better since Obama’s been in power.
“He believes removal of American influence from the rest of the world will make the world a better place and encourage peace. But history has shown that lack of American involvement creates instability and serious problems.”
A reply to Oxfam’s Catherine Essoyan blog on the re-building of Gaza
I first read your blog on both the Daily Telegraph website and then I had to check I had read it correctly so I read it again on Oxfam’s website. I had to check that what I first read was your actual words as I was so shocked at such a biased piece from someone in the position of Director at an esteemed charity such as OXFAM.
Why biased you may ask? Because its main thrust lays the blame firmly at the feet of Israel for as you say ‘Gaza is blockaded by Israel’ and OXFAM is ‘calling for the end of the blockade that has been in place for nearly eight years’. What you fail to point out in your blog is that the blockade was only put in place by Israel when Hamas commenced firing rockets into Israel, prior to that the boarder was open and goods were freely moving across it. You also fail to point out that the Gaza’s southern border with Egypt has been completely closed for many months preventing ANY goods or building materials to enter. So Catherine, maybe now you understand why I accuse you of bias?
I expect the above makes those who read your blog and support the work of OXFAM truly believe the suffering of Gaza’s civilians is wholly the fault of Israel. Is this something new for OXFAM? Well those that follow OXFAM closely know this isn’t the case as OXFAM are a constant critic of Israel whilst defending Palestinian Arab terrorists.
Of course we are all tremendously concerned that innocent civilians in Gaza are suffering and not able to re-build their homes, schools and hospitals. We should also be concerned at what building materials that do enter Gaza are actually used for. I suggest you take a look at this link to find out.
Italian MPs overwhelmingly approve recognition of Palestine
Italian lawmakers backed a non-binding resolution on Friday urging the government to recognize Palestine as a state.
Italy’s Chamber of Deputies voted by 300 to 45 to pass the motion presented by Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s Democratic Party, the Italian news site reported on Friday.
The resolution urges the government “to recognize the state of Palestine so that negotiations to reach a two-state solution are restarted.”
Friday’s symbolic vote does not change the position of the Italian government, which, like other European countries, still supports a negotiated two-state solution.
Muslim Council says Jewish fears 'justified'
After the president of the Central Council of Jews warned against anti-Semitism in Muslim areas of German cities, his Muslim opposite number agreed that 'these fears are justified”.
Aiman Mayzek, president of the Central Council of Muslims, told the Berliner Zeitung on Friday that he and his organization were taking a stand against anti-Semitism among Muslims.
“Attacks on Jews are an attack on our society,” he said.
Josef Schuster of the Central Council of Jews had said on Thursday that Jews should avoid “neighbourhoods with a large proportion of Muslims in the population,” especially in Berlin.
But while Mayzek agreed that there was a problem, he warned against the “islamization” of problems in German society.
Islamist seized for praising Paris attacks
Norwegian islamist Mullah Krekar was arrested at his home in Oslo on Thursday evening after telling Norway’s NRK that the Charlie Hebdo terror attacks made him “happy” and that anyone who made cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed deserved to die.
Krekar, an Iraqi Kurd whose real name is Najmuddin Faraj Ahmad, was charged for “inciting criminal offences” for the extreme statements, which caused uproar in Norway when the interview was aired on Wednesday.
“The cartoonist has become an infidel at war, and therefore it is permissible to kill him,” Krekar told the interviewer, arguing the attacks were justified under Islamic law.
“As he has trampled on our dignity, our principles and beliefs, so he must die. Anyone who does not respect 30 percent of the world's population has no right to live.”
Sweden artist talk halted after Denmark attacks
A planned lecture at Sweden's Karlstad University by the controversial Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks, the presumed target of the terror attack at a cultural event in Copenhagen earlier this month, has been scrapped by organisers.
Karlstad University in central Sweden announced on Friday that it was cancelling the lecture because it could not guarantee the safety of the audience in the wake of the recent shootings in Denmark and France.
"We have done a security check and decided that it is too high a risk to have this arrangement in our building," Jan Ganbreng, head of security for the university told The Local.
"It has been cancelled, not postponed. But perhaps another building will offer to hold it," he added.
Dieudonne gives Ahmadinejad gold ‘quenelle’ statue
Iranian ex-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called Dieudonne M’bala M’bala a “great artist” during a meeting in Tehran with the French comic who is a repeat inciter of hate against Jews.
Dieudonne visited the Islamic Republic last week, the news site reported, and presented Ahmadinejad with a golden statue of a man performing the quenelle — a gesture reminiscent of the Nazi salute that Dieudonne is promoting as a sign of discontent with the establishment but that French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has called a gesture of “anti-Semitic hate.”
Dieudonne calls the statue a “golden quenelle” and has presented a number of them to personalities he defines as anti-Zionist.
Ahmadinejad is a noted Holocaust denier who during his presidency expressed his wish that Israel would disappear.
Former Clinton PR Advisor, Conservative PR Leader Condemn New Israel Fund
We are two proud Jewish New Yorkers who work in communications. Though we differ in some of our approaches in business and politics, we share a common love for Israel, a unique democracy which celebrates the triumphs of the Jewish people, and is America’s closest ally in the Middle East.
Israel faces tremendous challenges living in a “dangerous neighborhood.” And while we embrace diversity of thought, we also know that sometimes language can be used in a harmful manner. For example, yelling “fire” in a crowded theatre would lead to a calamity. Likewise, those who support boycotts, divestments, and sanctions (BDS) are simply anti-Israel. To suggest otherwise is a lie.
Thus, we urge anyone affiliated with the New Israel Fund (NIF) to stop supporting this organization financially.  These extremists – amongst many other activities — openly support BDS, as is reflected on their website.  They write: “NIF will thus not exclude support for organizations that discourage the purchase of goods or use of services from settlements.” NIF prides itself in funding numerous organizations that also support BDS.
The Deputy Speaker of the Knesset Yoni Chetboun noted, “The main goal of the NIF is to undermine the Israeli Army, by knowingly financing left-wing Israeli groups that try to get young Israeli soldiers prosecuted for war crimes.” The New Israel Fund spends nearly $27 million annually on activities which harm the Israel Defense Forces, encourage sanctions on Israel, and more.
Legitimating Lies Through the BDS Movement
Jed Babbin and Herbert London’s masterful new book, The BDS War Against Israel, opens with a blood-chilling quotation from Mao Zedong: “A lie repeated a hundred times becomes the truth.” Chairman Mao would have marveled at our Information Age, when lies can be shared, pinned, tweeted, and retweeted thousands of times over with the tap of a screen. Lies can self-replicate like viruses, taking on the character of commonplace truths with stunning rapidity. In this respect, the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement is an epidemic.
Most Americans first heard of BDS in the lead-up to the 2014 Super Bowl, when Scarlett Johansson stepped down as a “global goodwill ambassador” for the UK-based charity Oxfam. The charity objected to her endorsement of SodaStream, an Israeli company that—at the time—employed more than 500 Palestinians in “occupied” territory. In response to the controversy, Johansson remarked, “I stand behind that decision … Until someone has a solution to the closing of that factory, to leaving all those people destitute, [boycotting Israel] doesn’t seem like the solution to the problem.”
Johansson exposed an important truth about BDS when she called attention to the price its advocates expect Palestinians to pay: BDS isn’t really about the Palestinians at all.
As Babbin and London explain in this slender tour de force, the fundamental problem that the BDS movement is trying to solve is not Palestinian destitution. Nor, for that matter, is it ongoing human rights violations in the West Bank and Gaza. If it were, pro-Palestinian advocates would set their sights on Hamas brutality and P.A. kleptocracy. Rather, the “problem” BDS is out to solve is the very existence of the State of Israel. The solution? Israel’s isolation, delegitimation, and ultimate dissolution.
Telling lies: The one and only strategy of anti-Zionists
For a truthful person, demonizing Israel is difficult. How can one convincingly denounce a liberal democracy that is surrounded by despotic regimes, especially one that treats even its enemies better than the despotic neighbours treat their own citizens? How can one denounce a country that is a major contributor of humanitarian aid to the world despite being unfairly singled out and demonized by most of the world? How can one refuse Israel’s right to exist on land occupied by Jews for over three millennia? How can one not support a tiny nation that stands up to all the regional bullies? Easy: lie, then lie, and then lie some more. That is in fact the only logical strategy in this circumstance, and what’s more, because it is used at a massive and an overwhelming scale, it works!
The whole anti-Zionist enterprise is based on lies, as the Simon Wiesenthal Center has demonstrated (the lies that Israel was created by European guilt over the Nazi Holocaust, that Israel is the main stumbling block to achieving a Two-State solution, that Israeli policies are the cause of worldwide antisemitism, etc), but the lies go much further than a shaky ideological foundation. Fabrications about supposed crimes by Israel are frequent and unrelenting. Anti-Zionists clearly know that the accusations are always much more widely broadcasted than the refutations that inevitably follow sooner or later. They know that no matter how much effort is employed in defending Israel, frequent lies damage the reputation of Israel beyond repair.
Routine and habitual
Lying is a routine and automatic part of the anti-Zionist discourse. Listing all lies against Israel would be far beyond the scope of this blog. In December 2013, Barry Rubin estimated that “about 10 to 20 slanders (at least) are issued against Israel each day”. A recent lie is the false accusation that Israel tried to drown Gaza. Another recent lie is a fake picture of a Palestinian being chased by Israeli police officers. Lying about Israel has become so routine among anti-Zionists, that they often don’t even bother trying to obtain accurate information. For example, during the last war between Israel and Hamas, pictures from Syria were widely used with the claim that they came from Gaza.
Israel’s involvement is not even required in order to fabricate lies about Israel. The claim that ISIS is an Israeli invention controlled by Mossad has now travelled the world more times that one cares to count. These are in fact the most effective lies; since Israel has nothing to do with ISIS, it is impossible to present counter evidence for such claims. What can one show as evidence? A blank page?
The Problem is Palestine
Many years ago as a student at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, I sat with a group of Arab friends discussing politics over lunch. When I posed the question “How do you define a Palestinian?” they began arguing among themselves. They could offer no common answer other than the idea that a Palestinian opposes Israel.
The Palestinian national movement has always defined itself as Israel’s nemesis; its struggle with Israel is seen as a zero-sum game. Palestinians have reflexively opposed anything that helps Israel and supported anything that hurts her. The idea of Palestine, by definition, precludes a peaceful solution because it is predicated on the negation of Israel.
If the Palestinian movement were a genuine drive for national liberation, Israel would have a true negotiating partner. Unfortunately, the Palestinian national movement has always been nihilistic; the focus has never been on nation building, but rather on destroying the Jewish State. The more land and power given the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, the more violent their incitement against Israel, and the more radical their demands.
In Coverage of Banksy's Erroneous Gaza Video, There's No Such Thing as Bad Publicity
Clearly, skepticism is a cardinal virtue of journalism, at least when journalists write about their craft, not necessarily when they practice it.
For example, when the well-known graffiti artist Banksy produced a video criticizing conditions in the Gaza Strip, too many journalists tossed aside skepticism in their rush to distribute and summarize the video. The result, to borrow a phrase from Carr's piece about 60 Minutes, was reporting that was "more ‘gee whiz' than ‘what gives?'" With journalists playing the role of publicists, news consumers weren't enlighten but instead led astray with misinformation about Gaza. @
A CNN piece describing and sharing the video practically gushed. The film "highlights plight of Gaza." Using "sharp irony," it "shines a spotlight on the suffering of ordinary Palestinians." It provides a "reality check."
But a reality check is what reporters are supposed to bring to the table. So when CNN passes to readers Banksy's claim that Palestinians are "not allowed to leave" Gaza (in fact, Egypt occasionally opens its border crossing with the territory and Israel entry to Gazans for humanitarian purposes), that "no cement has been allowed into Gaza since the bombing" (thousands of tons enter the territory every day), and that images of Israeli soldiers in the West Bank are actually depict Gaza, and when the reporter herself added a falsehood of her own in claiming that 3 Israeli civilians were killed (it was twice as many) during the 2014 fighting between Hamas and Israel, without checking their facts, the network shirks its responsibilities.
So it was with outlet after outlet. From NPR, it was all embedded video and credulousness. Here, too, the journalist not only failed to correct Bansky's errors but, in reporting so gently, conveyed a falsehood in his own voice. Banksy gave us "a two-minute video of life in the Palestinian territory," the Gaza Strip, the reporter tells his audience, although the images of Israeli soldiers in the West Bank are hardly part of life in the Gaza Strip.
Egyptian court rules Hamas a terror group
A month after an Egyptian court ruled that Hamas’s armed wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, was a terror organization, another court on Saturday branded the entire group — including its political wing — with the same designation.
Since Egypt’s military ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, the authorities have accused Hamas of aiding jihadists who have waged a string of deadly attacks on security forces in the Sinai Peninsula.
Hamas slammed the decision calling it a “stain on Egypt’s reputation.”
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the ruling has turned the Palestinian people into the enemy of Egypt and Israel, its friend. He accused the Egyptian court of trying to blame outside forces for the internal unrest.
Last week, state-run newspaper al-Ahram accused Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood of conspiring to overthrow the Egyptian regime within the next few years.
Palestinian killed in blast near ruined Gaza airport
A young Palestinian was killed and his brother seriously wounded in an explosion on Saturday near the Gaza Strip’s abandoned airport, the health ministry said.
“Naji Khaled Abu Sabla, 21, was killed and his brother Akram, 18, seriously wounded in the face and stomach when an unidentified device blew up in the area of the airport” in southern Gaza, said ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qidra.
Police in the Hamas-run territory said they suspected it was “a device left behind by the Israelis in the zone, where they make regular incursions.”
However there was no verification of this claim.
Gaza tunnel collapse kills senior Egyptian officer
Egyptian security officials say a senior army officer was killed and another was injured when a cross-border smuggling tunnel with the Gaza Strip collapsed after troops went into it to investigate.
The officials say the tunnel was discovered on Friday in the Egyptian town of Rafah in northern Sinai. One of its entrances was close to the town’s intelligence headquarters while the other was apparently on Gaza’s side of the border, in the Palestinian town of Rafah.
The officials say Lt. Col. Hussam Hamdi Abdel-Aziz was killed in the cave-in and Maj. Ahmed Farouq Mostapha was injured. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity according to regulations.
New Winton biography shows life after daring WWII rescues
When Barbara Winton began writing her biography of her father, Sir Nicholas Winton, she had initially thought not to include an event that was, for many thousands of people, the most important episode of his life.
In 1939, Nicholas Winton — known to friends as Nicky — was responsible for saving the lives of 669 children, mostly Jews, from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia. This short nine-month period has come to define him in many people’s eyes, yet, as Winton emphasizes in her book, “If it’s Not Impossible,” not in his.
In late February, the book was the subject of a session at Jewish Book Week in London, in which Winton took part. Its launch was a major event last May at Hay, Britain’s foremost literary and arts festival and, more recently.
Talking on the phone with the Times of Israel from her Herefordshire, England home, Winton explains she realized that telling the story of the rescue operation was essential, despite it being widely known. She decided to use it as “a kind of pivot… one to explain how he got to be the person, [a young stockbroker at the time] who at 29, had all those motivations and abilities to do [what he did].”
Daughter Barbara wanted to demonstrate that his life went on thereafter; that he was the same person, with the same sense of motivation. Even though what he achieved in later life was less dramatic, it was always on the same impulse.
China, WJC to mark Shanghai ghetto liberation
The World Jewish Congress and China’s government are preparing a joint commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Shanghai Ghetto.
The People’s Republic of China and WJC intend to host the ceremony in September, the parties said in a joint statement to media on Wednesday.
More than 23,000 Jewish refugees lived in the ghetto in Shanghai, which was then occupied by Japan — an ally of Nazi Germany and co-founder of the fascist Axis powers.
Some of the refugees in the ghetto arrived there from Lithuania, where the Japanese diplomat Chiune Sugihara gave transit visas into Japan to approximately 6,000 Jews in defiance of orders from Tokyo.
Leonard Nimoy, famous as Mr. Spock on ‘Star Trek,’ dies aged 83
Leonard Nimoy, the actor known and loved by generations of “Star Trek” fans as the pointy-eared, purely logical science officer Mr. Spock, has died.
Nimoy’s son, Adam Nimoy, said the actor died Friday of end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease at his Los Angeles home. He was 83.
Although Leonard Nimoy followed his 1966-69 “Star Trek” run with a notable career as both an actor and director, in the public’s mind he would always be Spock. His half-human, half-Vulcan character was the calm counterpoint to William Shatner’s often-emotional Captain Kirk on one of television and film’s most revered cult series.
He played Israeli leader Golda Meir’s husband opposite Ingrid Bergman in the TV drama “A Woman Called Golda” and Vincent van Gogh in “Vincent,” a one-man stage show on the life of the troubled painter. He continued to work well into his 70s, playing gazillionaire genius William Bell in the Fox series “Fringe.”

Posted By Ian to Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News at 2/28/2015 07:00:00 PM

Friday, February 27, 2015

A person asks a loaded, biased question on Quora:

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in 2015: Why is there no condemnation of Israel's use of flechette projectiles on civilians? used these bombs on civilians in Gaza and no one uttered a word ocondemnation.
Noam Kaiser (Israeli. And a damn proud one too) answered:

For the same reason there should be no condemnation of Jewish squeezing of live Christian baby blood for Matzos on Passover.

It isn't true.

I'm an operations officer of an armor brigade in the IDF and participated in Operation Protective Edge.

The type of armament you describe was not used in the operation by a single tank in Gaza. But I suspect the OP [original poster - EoZ] already knew that.

50 minutes later, I dug deeper and now I see exactly what is going on here. Before elaborating, here are two anti-israeli tactics that you (the readers) have just witnessed live:

  1. Take a single event and make it look like common conduct to smear the IDF's image.
  2. Tell short lies, it will force the Israelis to answer long, and no one will listen to them.

Now, as always, I give Quora users more credit than that, so here is the long truth:

  1. The OP wrote "IDF used these in Gaza" to make you believe this happened in Operation Protective edge, July 2014. The attached article by the Guardian dates to 2009.
  2. Flechettes are an ammunition that in 2009, matched only one type of tank in the IDF used by only one of it's northern units, Brigade 7 in Lebanon, and the ammo was in use up until a few years ago. It is the oldest tank in the IDF, all others have larger size main guns, and - yes - no flechette ammo.
  3. In Lebanon flechettes were used against Hezbollah, as they were engaged in the valleys of South Lebanon outside of cities and villages.
  4. In December 2008, after an ongoing bombardment of the Israeli south by Hamas rockets, the IDF launched operation Cast Lead.
  5. One of the Brigade 7 regiments was rushed south from the northern front, with the ammo its tanks carried.
  6. On the 14th of January 2009 (third week of the operation), one of the regiment's tanks, whose commander never served in Gaza and was unaware flechettes were not to be used in Gaza, fired three rounds at Hamas Gunmen. He did not "target" civilians with flechettes.
  7. This tragedy came known to IDF southern command the same day in debrief, and the tanks from the one regiment that had them were ordered to ensure they are not in use, during the operation, which ended three days later.
  8. Note: The IDF made the decision not to use flechettes in Gaza in 2002, this remained in place even after the Israeli Supreme Court concluded in 2003, they were not a weapon banned by any international treaty.

Anyone who knows something of urban warfare knows, that sterile combat is not a real option - especially facing terrorists organizations like Hamas which expose civilians intentionally (more on that later), and unfortunately two civilians were also hit.

Now, the OP would have you believe the following:
  1. Firing flechettes in Gaza is common conduct.
  2. It happened recently.
  3. Civilians are "targeted".
These are three lies. But it takes time to explain that.

As elaborated earlier, I am an IDF armor corps officer, ranking major. I have served for 5 years in regular service, and another 15 in reserves, which I still do. I served in Gaza, the West Bank, the Golan Heights and Lebanon, engaging in Combat against Hamas, and Hezbollah terrorists, in urban setting as well, several times.

I know much more than the OP what the IDF does to avoid civilian casualties and what Hamas does to increase them.

Another officer, British Colonel Richard Kemp, who commanded NATO forces in several fronts,  knows much more than me and of course,  more than the OP, about this challenge.  Here is what Kemp had to say about the IDF - and Hamas - in the Gaza conflict of 2009:

"Hamas is Expert at Driving Media Agenda," British Commander Tells U.N. Debate          

Long answer, I know.  But I'm sure you prefer it over short lies.
(h/t L. King)

Posted By Elder of Ziyon to Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News at 2/27/2015 05:20:00 PM
From Ian:

Palestinian Terrorism Verdict Shatters Long-Held Myths and Illusions
The illusion is shattered. When confronted with claims of complicity in terror attacks, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) can no longer lift their hands and say in puzzlement, “Who, me?”
And what will the court ruling do?
First, it will help the Western world to understand that the long-held fiction that the Palestinians are not responsible for their actions must be discarded. He didn’t get many things right about the Middle East, but what Edward Said called the “orientalism” of the West—the treatment of Palestinians as children who did not know better—allowed the PA and PLO to duck from responsibility for terrorist acts carried out under their watch, and worse, with their supervision and/or material support.
Second, it should convince the US government that the victims must be allowed to collect their financial awards. If not out of the of the $400 million in US aid money sent annually to the PA, the reparations should come out of other assets of the PA in the US and assist the victims to reach PA money in Europe.
Third, hitting the PA hard—in the pocketbook—should force the Palestinian leadership of Mahmoud Abbas, et al., to accept the fact that they cannot continue to pay terrorists sitting in prison or provide stipends to the families of murderers. More importantly, it might force the Palestinians living under their thumbs to say, once and for all time, “no” to the continued sponsorship and glorification of terrorists.
Katy Perry Visits Auschwitz, Warns Others to Learn from History
Pop singer Katy Perry took some time away from the music Wednesday to pay a visit to the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, where more than one million people were murdered in the Holocaust of the Second World War.
After performing in Krakow, Poland the night before, Perry shared her trip to the former Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau concentration camps with followers on Instagram.
“My heart was heavy today,” she said, before asking fans to let the site remain “a cry of despair and a warning to humanity.”
She also paraphased philosopher George Santayana, stating: “The one that does not remember history is bound to live through it again.”
Madonna: European intolerance ‘feels like Nazi Germany’
Rebounding from her stage tumble at the Brit awards, pop star Madonna told French radio Thursday that “intolerance” was now so high in France and Europe that “it feels like Nazi Germany.”
Speaking to Europe 1 radio in an interview to be aired Friday morning, Madonna said “anti-Semitism is at an all-time high” in France and elsewhere in Europe, and likened the current atmosphere to the period when German fascism was on the ascent.
“We’re living in crazy times. It feels like Nazi Germany,” the 56-year-old singer said, calling the situation “scary,” and lamenting what she described as France’s lost tradition of welcoming diversity and honoring freedom.
“It was a country that embraced everyone and encouraged freedom in every way, shape or form — artistic expression of freedom,” Madonna said. “Now that’s completely gone.
70 years since WWII - Amb. Prosor Addresses UNGA
"Seventy years ago, with the ashes of World War II still smoldering, the victors of the war came together to establish the UN and ensure that “Never Again” will not be a hollow promise.
Today the values at the very heart of this institution are being threatened by extremist ideologies that target our way of life. From West Africa to the Middle East, extremists group have unleashed a plague of persecution believing that by silencing individuals, they can silence civilization."

Use for your next Gaza vacation
The Electronic Intifada's having a bit of a tantrum because offers accommodations over the green line.
Interestingly enough, also includes listings in that vacationers paradise, terror controlled Gaza. Electronic Intifada doesn't seem to care about that.
This beach chalet, listed on is just meters from the Gaza beach and offers both a swimming pool and a jacuzzi, and manicured landscaping (just like the Warsaw ghetto)
IsraellyCool: George Galloway Humiliated On Twitter
It was supposed to help George Galloway in his re-election bid: a Q&A session on Twitter promoted by his buddies at Iran’s Press TV.
What transpired was a huge PR fail for Galloway.
Here are just a selection of the questions he received (including some from yours truly) (h/t Bob Knot)
Voice of Israel interview with Adam Levick addresses UK media bias and antisemitism
On Feb. 26, Voice of Israel host Judy Lash Balint sat down with Adam Levick for an in-studio interview. Levick discussed quite a few issues of concern to followers of this blog, including the connection between biased UK media coverage of Israel and the recent increase in antisemitic incidents in the UK.
You can learn more about this specific topic by attending a CAMERA sponsored conference in Jerusalem on March 1st titled ‘Framing Israel, Framing Jews‘. (Advance Registration is required)
Adam Levick, Managing Editor of UK Media Watch, on Voice of Israel

Said Says (Falsely): ‘Israel flooding Gaza with Waste Water’
Once again Said Arikat of the al Quds newspaper used the bully pulpit of the U.S. State Department briefing room to lobby for aid for the Palestinian Authority. But this time he also slandered Israel with an outright lie, stated as fact. And no one corrected him. Where is the voice of truth in the State Department press corps, let alone the State Department?
On Thursday, Feb. 26, Arikat artfully built on a lie that Israel intentionally flooded Gaza by opening dams in the region. That lie has been conclusively disproven – there are no such dams in southern Israel that could be opened to flood Gaza, even if Israel wanted to to that.
Perhaps sensing that some journalists or even the State Dept. Spokesperson herself might have learned that major media outlets such as AFP, MailOnLine and Yahoo! News had to pull their Israeli dam stories because they were proven false, Arikat reached into his bag of tricks and pulled out another (false and disproven, but older so maybe not so fresh in people’s minds) slander against Israel.
Arikat claimed that Israel was intentionally flooding Gaza “farmland” with waste water.
Rock, Paper, Scissors of PC Victimology
Muslim > gay, black > female, and everybody > the Jews
This is because in the progressive imagination, the perceived plight of Muslims now trumps the sufferings of all other groups. It is this conceit that goes the furthest in explaining President Obama’s remark to Vox earlier this month that the murder of four Jews at a kosher supermarket in Paris last month was “random,” and, when questioned on his use of that particular word to describe what was obviously a very deliberate assault, the efforts of two administration spokespersons to dig in their heels and insist that the attack had nothing to do with religion, either that of the victims or the assailants. Contra my Tablet colleague Yair Rosenberg, I do not buy the argument that the administration’s downplaying the anti-Semitic nature of the crime was the result of a stubborn refusal to admit an incident of presidential inarticulateness. As I’ve written elsewhere, more likely is it that the president and his administration are reluctant to draw much attention to anti-Semitism for the same reason they are reluctant to speak plainly about militant Islamism: They seek an accommodation with the Muslim world, where bigoted views about Jews are prevalent if not mainstream, and harping about anti-Semitism gets in the way of that all-consuming aspiration. The same goes for anti-Christian animus; see, for instance, the White House’s anodyne condemnation of the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya last week, which made no mention of the reason why they were killed. As such, the president cannot let a discussion go by of the Islamic State (which, he insists, is “not Islamic”) without a reference to the Christian Crusades (“committed … in the name of Christ”) of five centuries ago.
So, true to form, after this month’s Copenhagen attack, a National Security Council statement made no mention of the fact that a Jewish institution had been targeted. Likewise, the New York Times article reporting on the events, while not mentioning the word “anti-Semitism” at all, was sure to note that “Anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment is rising in Europe, and although there was no indication who was responsible for the shootings in Copenhagen, Twitter was ablaze with anti-Muslim indictments.” A follow-up story in the Times carried this preposterous headline, “Anger of suspect in Danish killings is seen as only loosely tied to Islam.”
If European Jews Must Live in Fear, Why Was Netanyahu Wrong?
A new Pew Research Center study shows that Jews were harassed or oppressed by their governments in 77 of the 198 countries covered by the survey. That includes a frightening total of 34 out of 45 countries in Europe. Yet the problem with accepting the reality of European anti-Semitism arises from a reluctance to place the blame for this prejudice on the haters rather than the victims.
One example came this week from “Science Guy” Bill Nye, the popular science educator and television star. On Bill Maher’s HBO show Real Time, Nye said that the problems of European Jews stem from their reluctance to make friends with those who hated them. Attacking Netanyahu’s Zionist stand, Nye said the answer was that Jews should do more “to get to know their neighbors,” as if the roots of centuries of European anti-Semitism was the unwillingness of the victims to undertake outreach to anti-Semites.
That was offensive enough, but an even better example of the mentality that tolerates this new wave of anti-Semitism came from a British Jews. Harry Potter Actress Miriam Margolyes told the Guardian, “I don’t think people like Jews” but blamed the current outbreak on Israel since it gave Britons an excuse to vent their true feelings because of anger about the Gaza war. Like most British artists Margolyes blamed Israel for defending itself against Hamas terrorism and said the backlash against Jews was therefore somehow understandable, if deplorable. Her stance was both uninformed and illogical but it reflects the attitudes of English and other European elites who have, in a strange confluence of opinion, come to share the prejudices of Muslim immigrants who have helped revive traditional Jew hatred on the continent.
U.S. Senate Introduces Resolution Condemning European Anti-Semitism
The United States Senate yesterday introduced a resolution authored by Sen. Robert Menendez (D – N.J.) condemning the rise of European anti-Semitism, The Times of Israel reported. The bipartisan measure was co-sponsored by 52 other senators.
The resolution notes that “an alarming increase in anti-Semitic attacks and incidents targeting Jewish institutions, places of worship, and individuals continue[s] to take place in Europe and remain[s] a challenge to stability and security.”
It calls on the US to work with its European counterparts to ensure that steps are taken to combat anti-Semitism, including “undertaking prompt, impartial, and effective investigations of any acts of violence motivated by anti-Semitism and fully prosecuting those responsible for such violence within the extent of the law”; cooperating on developing programs to counter violent extremists; integrating measures combating anti-Semitism into national action plans for the prevention of hate crimes and violence; convening regular consultations with the Jewish communities; and increasing cooperation on training initiatives related to hate crimes, particularly crimes motivated by anti-Semitism, for law enforcement personnel, and improving monitoring and reporting efforts.
Footage Shows Hyper Cacher Terrorist Kill Shopper After Victim Revealed He Was Jewish
Footage filmed by Paris gunman Amedy Coulibaly during his killing spree inside the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket in January shows him asking a customer his nationality before shooting him dead after the victim replies that he is Jewish, the BBC reported on Thursday, citing a transcript of the video obtained by the French website Le Nouvel Observateur.
In the 7-minute clip, Coulibaly asks the hostage what his origin is and when the man replies “Jewish,” Coulibaly kills him instantly. The gunman also shouts “Nobody move” before grabbing another customer, asking his name and then shooting him dead.
“So you know why I am here then. Allahu Akbar,” he yells in the footage, according to Le Nouvel Observateur.
Coulibaly goes on an antisemitic rant in the video and screams “Stand up or I’ll kill you” at the hostages. He also makes further antisemitic remarks in response to one woman who tries telling him the hostages are innocent, according to a transcript of the clip.
Charlie Hebdo riches fail to draw cartoonists
French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo is facing a drought of contributors just weeks after gunmen stormed its offices killing eight its writers and cartoonists, despite soaring distribution to 2.5m in the wake of an outpouring of public sympathy.
New editor Laurent Sourisseau has complained of difficulties in recruitment from cartoonists fearful of repercussions from association with the title with many asking ‘Will I have to come to the editorial conference? Do I have to sign under my real name?’
It comes amidst internal wrangling over the distribution of profits with surviving shareholders resisting employee calls for a cooperative. Sourisseau himself has a 40 per cent stake in the business.
Record sales saw 8m copies of its special Survivors Edition shifted, generating €12 million in sales. Subscriptions generated a further €3 million and donations topped €4.2 million – eclipsing the €5.2 million revenue generated throughout the whole of 2013.
Hebdo’s financial director, Eric Portheault, has said that all donations will be passed on to the families of victims with sales revenue used to pay for high-security office space.
Police Arrest Suspected Third Accomplice in Copenhagen Attacks
Danish police said they arrested Friday a third alleged accomplice in the Copenhagen shootings, nearly two weeks after the attacks that killed two people.
The suspect is "charged with complicity in the perpetrator's actions" and will appear before a judge on Saturday for a custody hearing, police said in a statement.
Two other men who allegedly helped Islamist gunman Omar El-Hussein were arrested shortly after the February 14 attacks and have been ordered to be detained until March 26.
El-Hussein was shot dead by police after his shooting spree that send fresh shockwaves across Europe after the Islamist attacks in Paris in January.
Danish imam to be charged in Germany for call to kill Jews
A Danish imam who called in Berlin for the killing of Zionist Jews will face criminal charges, German prosecutors said.
Abu Bilal Ismail will be charged in Germany for inciting to hate, Denmark’s TV2 News reported Wednesday.
The charges are connected to statements he made during his July 18 sermon at the Al-Nur mosque, Berlin prosecutors told TV2 News this week.
“Oh, Allah, destroy the Zionist Jews, they are no challenge for you,” Ismail, an imam from the Grimhoj Mosque in the city of Aarhus, was filmed saying during the sermon, according to a translation from Arabic prepared by the Middle East Media Research Institute, or MEMRI. “Count them and kill them to the very last one. Don’t spare a single one of them. Make them suffer terribly.”
Al Jazeera Journos Arrested For Buzzing Eiffel Tower With Drones
Three Al Jazeera journalists were arrested in Paris on Wednesday for illegally flying a drone in the city. French news agencies report that drones have appeared on several occasions in recent days above the Eiffel Tower and other Parisian monuments.
The Al Jazeera employees, all of whom are foreign nationals, were aged 36, 54 and 70, according to reports. Police officials said the employees of the Doha-based company were found flying a drone near the Bois de Boulogne woods in western Paris. Agnes Thibault-Lecuivre, the Paris prosecutor’s office spokeswoman, said the motives of the journalists remain unclear.
Under French law, the journalists can face a maximum prison term of one year and an $85,000 dollar fine.
From Tuesday to Wednesday, police sighted at least one drone in the skies of Paris on five different occasions, all of which took place from 11:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. local time. Another drone was spotted on Monday flying over the U.S. Embassy in Paris.
Judge rejects AMIA cover-up case against Argentine president
An Argentine judge dismissed the case against his country’s President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner for allegedly shielding Iranian officials from prosecution over the 1994 bombing of a Buenos Aires Jewish center, judicial sources said Thursday.
Judge Daniel Rafecas said the documents filed by the late prosecutor Alberto Nisman failed to meet standards needed to open a formal court investigation.
“I dismiss the case because no crime was committed,” Rafecas said.
Prosecutors had sought to relaunch the case against Kirchner that was being brought by their late colleague Alberto Nisman, who died mysteriously last month after accusing Kirchner of protecting Iranians suspected of ordering the deadly bombing at the Argentine Jewish Mutual Association.
Yelling ‘Allahu Akbar!’ in a Crowded Movie Theater
On a busy Syrian street, members of al Qaeda held a Muslim woman captive. As part of their “street justice,” one man loudly proclaimed that she had gone against Allah by committing adultery. After five, long torturous minutes, he pulled a pistol and shot her dead. The entire group immediately began chanting “Allahu Akbar!”
In an Eastern Nigerian village, a group of Islamic terrorists gunned down more than 50 Christian children as they screamed “Allahu Akbar!”
In Paris, terrorists stormed the offices of the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo and murdered 12 people while yelling “Allahu Akbar!”
Throughout Israel, almost every Muslim suicide bombing that took thousands of Jewish lives was preceded by the chant “Allahu Akbar!”
In today’s climate, it seems most reasonable that a small group of Jewish and pro-Israel students would feel threatened, and yes, terrorized, while walking between a gauntlet of students yelling “Allahu Akbar!”
The University of California system would not tolerate these actions by any group toward gays, Asians, women, or blacks, so the time has come to put an end to this pretense. The time for yelling “Allahu Akbar!” at demonstrations, school votes, pro-Israel rallies, or anywhere that is publicly funded has come and gone, just as yelling “fire” in a crowded movie theater has.
ASUC Senate Passes Bill Condemning Anti-Semitism
On Wednesday, the Senate of The Associated Students of the University of California, also known as ASUC, unanimously passed a resolution condemning anti-Semitism and called for the ASUC to do a better job protecting Jews. The ASUC, the association of students at the University of California, Berkeley, is “the largest and most autonomous student association in the nation,” according to the organization’s website.
The bill, sponsored by Senator Ori Herschmann and co-sponsored by numerous campus leaders including ASUC President Pavan Upadhyayula, the Jewish Student Union, and fellow ASUC Senators condemned the campus anti-Semitism with a 20-0 vote. The bill, which lists the many anti-Semitic acts in the UC system over the past five years, adopts the US State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism as the official description for the ASUC, creates an ASUC committee to challenge anti-Semitism, and calls for a meeting with Chancellor Dirks of UC Berkeley and the Dean of Students.
Herschmann stated, “As a brother of AEPi, I saw the horrible anti-Semitic actions that occurred at our UC Davis chapter where swastikas were spray-painted on their house as well as discrimination against a Jewish student within the UCLA student government. It’s extremely important for the ASUC and student governments alike to actively fight anti-Semitism and make sure all Jewish students feel safe on campus.”
Liberty University Student Government Disavows Anti-Israel BDS Legislation
The student government at Virginia’s Liberty University on Tuesday passed an amendment to its constitution that forbids legislation supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.
The amendment to the constitution declared that Liberty’s student government “will not entertain BDS legislation targeted at the Israeli state, or its people, or legislation of similar intent.”
Liberty University senior Chelsea Andrews—a pro-Israel student activist with CUFI on Campus, the school’s division of the Christian Zionist organization Christians United for Israel—led the effort to pass the anti-BDS amendment.
“At Liberty University we stand with Israel, because as Christians, as Americans, and as individuals focused on freedom and human rights, there is no alternative,” Andrews said after the amendment passed. “I hope that other students will see what LU has done and follow suit. Across the country we’ve seen BDS repeatedly rear its ugly head. That stops now.”
Queers Against Israeli Apartheid disbands
Palestinian rights group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid is shutting itself down after seven years of activism and controversy.
Tim McCaskell, one of the group’s organizers, announced in a news release Thursday that QuAIA will “officially retire” at the end of this month.
The group educated Canadians about the Israeli “occupation”, popularized the terms “Israeli apartheid” and “pinkwashing” and inspired QuAIA groups in queer communities around the world,” he said.
But deteriorating Middle East conditions and Canada’s attempts to “suppress” boycott, divestment and sanction efforts “pulled activist energies in many directions,” and QuAIA members to other groups and cities.
“It wasn’t an easy decision to make,” McCaskell said. “But we decided that retiring QuAIA allows us all to develop new strategies for supporting the Palestine solidarity movement and to make new links across oppressions in our communities.”
Avi Benlolo, chief executive of the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust Studies, and a past critic of what he called a “fringe group”, welcomed QuAIA’s decision but doubted the stated reason.
“It’s quite obvious that they would lose momentum,” Benlolo said.” With extremist massacres in Syria, ISIS going around cutting people’s heads off, Iran executing gays ... why would anybody be going after Israel with its pride parades in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem?”
Muslim preacher who called homosexuality a 'scourge' to speak at university a day before gay pride event
A controversial preacher who described homosexuality as a “scourge” has been invited to speak at a London university the day before a national gay pride event takes place there.
More than 500 people have signed a petition against allowing Haitham al-Haddad to speak at the University of Westminster’s Islamic Society [Jihad Johns alma mater] event on Thursday.
Dr al-Haddad has called homosexuality a “criminal act”, as well as saying there is a “proper” way of performing FGM. He has also argued that the authorities should not become involved in domestic disputes, saying: “A man should not be questioned why he hit his wife, because this is something between them.”
His appearance as keynote speaker at an event called “Who is Muhammad” comes the day before the National Student Pride Festival is launched at the university.
IsraellyCool: Roger Waters Accused Of Illegal Land Grab
Fresh from being owned by fellow rocker Alan Parsons, Rock’n’roll BDShole Roger Waters is again in the news, this time for being accused of – wait for it – engaging in a land grab!
If good fences make good neighbors, Roger Waters of Pink Floyd fame needs to put another brick in the wall — the wall he should build around his property in the Hamptons, that is.
The legendary British rocker has been at war for three years over a right-of-way that gives his neighbors on Quimby Lane access to Sag Pond.
The trouble started when Ben Krupinski, the contractor hired by Waters and his beautiful wife, Laura Durning, began building a 14,000-square-foot house with a swimming pool, a pool house and a sunken tennis court.
Krupinski started driving trucks and bulldozers down the right-of-way, so neighbors put a chain across the lane. But Krupinski tore down the chain and paved the right-of-way, turning it into Waters’ driveway.
“Welcome to Gaza” – Banksy’s anti-Israel video
Perhaps the most notable aspect of Banksy’s video is not so much what it states but the content it leaves out. There is a complete absence of any reference to Hamas, rocket and mortar attacks, Islamist terrorism perpetuated against Israeli civilians etc. In other words, the video provides zero context. There is only space for poignant images of Arabs living in a bomb damaged environment, and apparent instances of Israeli oppression and aggression.
The video’s absolutist dichotomy is reinforced by a total absence of images or footage that includes Hamas. The viewer is not any wiser about Gaza’s governance. In fact, without explanation, the video features a scene of heavily armed IDF soldiers, with the words “The locals like it so much they never leave (because they’re not allowed to)”. However, the video footage of the soldiers appears to have been shot in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank), because the security barrier is shown in the background. The inclusion of such content may lead to the viewer to believe that Gaza is still occupied by Israel.
By implication, Banksy casts Hamas as powerless, when he wrote “of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless…” This is a normative claim by anti-Israel activists, who excuse Hamas’ belligerency, incitement, and terrorism against a civilian populace which it desires to see exterminated.
Perhaps Banksy should ask which party truly tyrannises the Gazan populace? Could it be an Islamist regime that no longer constitutes the territory’s legitimately elected representatives, that puts its people in harms way to continue its belligerency at all costs, to be used as fodder in intensive anti-Israel propaganda?
Other than shady motivations, what could possibly prompt omissions of Hamas from this narrative?
The Human Stain of Moral Preening
Responsible journalist that he is, Kristof concedes “far worse human rights abuses in the Middle East” than those committed against two Palestinian farmers by evil settlers. He recognizes that at “a time when Saudi Arabia is flogging dissidents, Egypt is sentencing them to death, and Syria is bombing them,” Israel “should stand as a model.” But not for Kristof. The only democratic country in the Middle East, indeed by his own acknowledgment “the nation in which Arab citizens have the most meaningful vote,” is the morally flawed Jewish state. Curiously, his enumeration of Arab misdeeds omits the forbidden phrase in liberal circles emanating from the White House: “Islamist terrorists.” There is no mention of ISIS, ISIL, al-Qaeda, Al-Nusra, Boko Haram, Hamas and Hezbollah, or other “folks” (in the current lexicon) who commit daily atrocities against innocents.
But Kristof finds Israel’s “occupation” (of its biblical homeland, no less) to be “particularly offensive.” Why? Because “it is conducted by the United States’ ally, underwritten with our tax dollars, supported by tax-deductible contributions to settlement groups, and carried out by American bulldozers and weaponry, and presided over by a prime minister who is scheduled to speak to Congress next week.” It is, in sum, all Netanyahu’s fault (and mine, since I contribute a small sum annually to The Hebron Fund).
If only Israel did not “squander” its political capital and “antagonize” friends “with its naked land grab in the West Bank,” it might reach his noble standard of moral purity. Perhaps, Kristof suggests, the Prime Minister might discuss such abuses in his forthcoming address to Congress. I have a better idea: perhaps Mr. Netanyahu will remind Israel’s professed American friends (like Nicholas Kristof) that Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) comprise the biblical homeland of the Jewish people, where Jewish history was forged millennia before self-righteous New York Times pundits offered Israeli prime ministers moral guidance.
The Guardian continues to mislead on cause of Palestinian deaths at UN school
Additionally, IDF spokesman Peter Lerner told reporters that the IDF had returned fired at Hamas targets (which were stationed near the school) on the day in question, and that one of the errant tank mortars landed in the school courtyard, “injuring no one“. Lerner said it was “extremely unlikely” that anyone had been killed by the mortar round that fell in the empty yard.
Further, as CAMERA has previously noted, numerous news reporters, as well as United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, have acknowledged that the circumstances behind the July 24th incident were unclear.
However, not only did the Guardian fail to report this evidence at the time, but they continue to publish articles and photo stories about the summer war which falsely suggest that Israel’s guilt is firmly established.
BBC’s Lyse Doucet does ‘reporter in the rubble’ redux – part two
Not only does Doucet fail to clarify to viewers that the Gaza Strip has not been under “occupation” since August 2005, she makes no effort to correct the inaccurate impression received by audiences as a result of Hamad’s lies.
In January 2015 alone, 15,205 tons of construction materials were imported into the Gaza Strip. Since the end of the conflict, 50,000 tons of building materials have entered the Strip and more than 42,000 residents have purchased them. 804 tons of agricultural produce were exported from the Gaza Strip to the PA controlled areas in January, bringing the total tonnage of merchandise exported to that destination since September 2014 to 2,130. 11,826 people crossed into Israel from the Gaza Strip in January alone – 2,038 of them for humanitarian reasons. 3,054 tons of gas entered the Gaza Strip during January, along with 1.8 million litres of fuel, 6.8 million litres of gasoline and 76,000 litres of oil.
Doucet continues:
“But there are reports – credible reports – that Hamas is again digging tunnels, that Hamas has been test-firing missiles in preparation for the next war.”
Hamad: “Look, I think this time – that’s right – but I think that Hamas is doing this in order to protect our people here. We don’t want to be surprised with a new war – a new aggression against us.”

In addition to displaying no interest whatsoever in questioning Hamad about where the money and materials for rehabilitation of Hamas’ military capabilities are coming from and why Hamas is doing nothing to improve the lives of the ordinary people it holds hostage, Doucet also makes no attempt to enlighten viewers with regard to the fact that Hamad’s faux victimhood is mere propaganda. Instead of pointing out that Hamas initiated last summer’s conflict she closes with yet more drama and unsupported speculations.
Swastika posters on California house enrage neighbors
A Northern California man’s display of poster-size swastikas outside his Sacramento house is upsetting some neighbors and state lawmakers, who plan to call on him to remove them.
The symbols used by German Nazis in World War II replace stars in one American and two Israeli flags. There is also a Palestinian flag and a statue made of wood of a figure raising its arms and dressed in army green. The display also includes Christmas lights to illuminate it at night.
Sacramento Police Spokesman Officer Justin Brown said Wednesday police received a call about the house in the River Park neighborhood on Monday and after doing a welfare check found there were no reportable crimes.
“We haven’t received any other complaints,” Brown said.
Democratic Sen. Marty Block of San Diego said a news conference with lawmakers, veterans and community leaders will be held Thursday to call on the house owner to voluntarily remove the swastikas.
What’s in that drink? Futuristic device lets you find out
Before buying fruit at the greengrocer, steak at the butcher or a nutritional supplement at the pharmacy, imagine taking a gadget out of your pocket, aiming it at the item and instantly seeing its quality, ripeness and nutritional value, plus a whole lot more data hidden at the molecular level.
That is about to happen. Come July, the Israeli company Consumer Physics will start shipping preorders of its futuristic SCiO, the world’s first consumer-grade molecular sensor.
The sensor, a tiny spectrometer, allows you to get instant relevant information about the chemical make-up of just about everything around you, from foods to plants, medicines, diamonds and more, sent directly to your smartphone.
“In the last 10 years or so, we’ve all gotten used to having an instant ‘search button’ in our pocket that lets us know where we are on a map, book a table at a restaurant, listen to a song in a different language and buy it and translate it,” says Consumer Physics cofounder Dror Sharon, who describes his position as “CEO and Chief Happiness Officer.”
“The power in our pockets is phenomenal, but one piece is missing, and that’s information about the things in our physical world – everything from food to medicine to fuel. That’s the basic need we’re trying to answer.”
Predicting where to park? Israel’s got an app for that
With the parking industry worth $25 billion a year in the United States and more than twice that in western Europe, it's no surprise that high-tech firms are scrambling to come up with clever ways to make the process quicker and easier.
In Britain, JustPark provides a mobile app that enables users to rent people's private parking spaces.
In the United States, SpotHero and ParkWhiz allow users to find paid parking areas or book places in advance. German carmaker BMW has been trialing a similar service called ParkNow.
But Israeli companies are taking a different approach to the problem: predicting where parking spaces can be found based on mobile data analytics.
Anagog, a Tel Aviv-based firm, has developed an app that can guide drivers to empty on-street parking using real-time, crowd-sourced data from mobile phones, similar to what another Israeli app, Waze, has successfully done with navigation. Waze was bought by Google in 2013 for $1 billion.
Anagog's software learns personal behavior and knows whether a user is getting into a car or starting to drive away, freeing up a place.
New study findings could improve targeted chemo drug delivery
A new Israeli-American study reveals that silicon nanomaterials for localized delivery chemotherapeutics behave differently in cancerous tumors than they do in healthy tissues.
The findings from the joint study by the Technion, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Harvard Medical School could improve targeted chemo drug delivery.
“We have shown for the first time that biomaterials in general, and nanostructured porous silicon in particular, behave differently when they are injected (or implanted) at the tumor microenvironment,” said Professor Ester Segal, who heads the Technion group that led the study. “Over the last few years we successfully engineered silicon to be used as a carrier of anticancer drugs that releases its contents in a controlled manner, and now we have focused on the degradation mechanism of the silicon at the diseased tissue.”
Tim Cook: Apple’s Herzliya R&D center second-largest in world
Cook, who was in Israel to inaugurate Apple’s new R&D center in Herzliya, touched on a number of major issues that concern both Israel and Apple — including environmental matters, education, diversity, and even Israeli Arabs.
That last issue was highlighted not by Cook himself, but by Johny Srouji, who accompanied his boss on the trip. Srouji — vice president for hardware technology — is an Israeli Arab who hails from Haifa. Before joining Apple in 2008 to head its chip-development team, Srouji worked at Intel and IBM, after graduating from the Technion.
For Rivlin, Srouji’s ascent to one of the top tech positions in the world was a harbinger of what the government hopes will be a wave of similar accomplishments by people just like Srouji — Israeli Arabs educated in technology disciplines, working at the 300-some multinationals that have R&D and other facilities in Israel.
“Imagine what the world would be like with another five ‘Johny Sroujis,’” said Rivlin. “We are proud of him and all he has achieved.” To which Cook added, “When you find those five Sroujis, let me know where they are.”
The Times of Israel- Telling Israel's Story

Posted By Ian to Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News at 2/27/2015 04:00:00 PM

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