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Monday, October 31, 2016

From Ian:

#IAmBalfour – Declaring 100 Years of Britain’s Support for Israel
The Balfour Declaration, published on 2 November 1917, was a letter addressed by Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour that proclaimed Britain would support the establishment of “a national home for the Jewish people”. This declaration paved the way for Israel to be reborn as a nation.
In September 2016, the Palestinian Leader Mahmoud Abbas told the UN General Assembly that Britain should apologise for the Balfour Declaration. To attack Israel’s very existence is at its root anti-Semitic. And in October 2016, anti-Israel activists launched a campaign to pressure the UK Government to apologise.
#IAmBalfour is a year-long petition, starting on the 99th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, which provides YOU with an opportunity to declare solidarity with Britain’s 100 year support of Israel, seeks to raise awareness and urges the British Government to uphold its commitment to Israel and the Jewish people – without apology.
Sign the #IAmBalfour Declaration

UK's despicable liberals owe Israel an apology
We have just witnessed the shameful spectacle of a Jew-hating event hosted by the House of Lords and chaired by the notorious anti-Semite Baroness Jenny Tonge, who co-organised the event with the Palestine Return Centre. During the session, Israel was compared to Islamic State and Jews were blamed for pushing Hitler over the edge and bringing the Holocaust on themselves. Baroness Tonge appeared to enjoy the sessions. Her only concern was that someone might overhear them. There may be “Zionist ears in the room,” she warned her audience.
Baroness Tonge is no stranger to anti-Semitism and anti-Zionist paranoia. A purveyor of the modern-day blood libel, she accused the Israel Defense Forces’ medical team in Haiti in 2010 of harvesting organs. Two years later, she appeared at an Israeli Apartheid Week event and called for an end to the Jewish state, which she described as an “aircraft carrier.” She has also expressed support for Arab suicide bombers and has repeatedly railed against the so-called pro-Israeli lobby, which “has got its grips on the western world, its financial grips.”
Baroness Tonge represents everything that is wrong with left-wing liberalism in Britain. Arrogant, elitist, self-righteous, smugly comfortable, she is completely out of touch with the lower middle and working classes (she is, after all, a Baroness in the House of Lords). She is also one of those ‘anti-racist anti-Semites’ who sees racism everywhere except when it presents itself as Jew-hatred. Baroness Tonge, like many left-wing liberals, believes that history is on their side when it comes to multiculturalism, the demise of national borders and the annihilation of Israel.
In a word, she is despicable.

A New Blacklist From the Southern Poverty Law Center Marks the Demise of a Once-Vital Organization
Late last week, the Southern Poverty Law Center, which became deservedly famous in the 1980s for combating violent white-power hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis, published a list of 15 individuals it labels as particularly threatening anti-Muslim extremists. It is sad but telling that the SPLC’s so-called field guide to Muslim-haters is not a list of violent extremists—who certainly do exist—but is instead a blacklist of prominent writers whose opinions on a range of cultural and political issues are offensive to the SPLC. The SPLC blacklist list contains practicing Muslims like Maajid Nawaz, ex-Muslims like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, foreign-policy think-tankers like Frank Gaffney and Daniel Pipes, and right-wing firebrands like David Horowitz—none of whom could be reasonably described as anti-Muslim bigots.
I spoke to Nawaz on the phone in London to ask for his reaction. “A bunch of first-world, comfortable liberal Americans who are not Muslims have decided from their comfortable perch to label me, an activist who is working within his Muslim community to push back against extremism, an anti-Muslim extremist.”
On the face of it, it’s difficult to understand why Nawaz was listed as such. As he told me, he’s a proud Muslim. “I learned Arabic in order to read my holy book,” he said. “In an Intelligence Squared debate, I defended the proposition that Islam was a religion of peace. This was the same week that the man who attempted to bomb Times Square was sentenced so it wasn’t the friendliest New York audience. I hosted Morgan Freeman in a mosque for his documentary The Story of God.”
Nawaz takes the SPLC blacklist seriously, he told me, because he believes that it has put his life in danger. “They’ve put a target on my head,” he said. “This is what putting people on lists does. When Theo Van Gogh was killed in the Netherlands, a list was stuck to his body that included Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s name. It was a hit list. When Bangladeshi reformers were hacked to death by jihadist terrorists, they were working off lists. Only fascists produce lists.”
'BDS movement wants to wipe Israel off the face of the Earth'
The boycott, divestment and sanctions movement's true objective is "wiping the Jewish nation off the face of the Earth," Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked warned on Sunday.
Speaking at the opening plenary of the Jewish Agency's Board of Governors meeting in Jerusalem, Shaked said the BDS movement is "deeply rooted in the classical anti-Semitism that has spread throughout Europe over the past few hundred years."
The board, which meets at least three times a year, is the central policy-making body of the Jewish Agency.
Addressing the plenary, Shaked warned "all agents of ignorance and hatred" against testing Israel's strength and determination to defend itself, Russia's RT news reported.
She said the BDS movement "has no interest in promoting human rights, only in wiping the Jewish nation off the face of the Earth."
Freedom Center Urges College Presidents to End Aid to Campus Supporters of Terror
FrontPage Mag Editor’s Note: The following letter was sent to the presidents of the ten campuses named in the Freedom Center’s report on the “Top Ten Schools Supporting Terrorists.” In alphabetical order, the ten campuses are: Brooklyn College (CUNY), San Diego State University, San Francisco State University, Tufts University, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Irvine, University of California, Los Angeles, University of Chicago, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Vassar College.
October 27, 2016
Dr. Janet Napolitano President University of California Dear Dr. Napolitano,
Your school purports to promote the values of diversity, inclusiveness and tolerance yet provides resources, funding and legitimacy to Students for Justice in Palestine. Students for Justice in Palestine is a campus organization whose sole purpose is to conduct hateful propaganda against Jews and the Jewish state for the terrorist organization Hamas. The explicit goals of Hamas are the destruction of the world’s only Jewish state and genocide against its Jewish population. For these reasons, among others, three campuses of the University of California—Irvine, Los Angeles, and Berkeley—have been named among the “Top Ten Schools Supporting Terrorists” by the David Horowitz Freedom Center. You may read the full report here:
While it masquerades as a typical campus cultural group, SJP is an integral part of Hamas’s efforts to annihilate Israel through the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign. This is an insidious effort that attempts to delegitimize Israel, and smear it as a rogue “apartheid” nation. These claims are ludicrous. More than a million Palestinians enjoy Israeli citizenship including the rights to vote and to sit on the Israeli courts and parliament. Harvard Professor Alan Dershowitz has said of the BDS movement, “It is anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist, anti-human rights, anti-intellectual, anti-science, anti-negotiation, anti-peace, anti-compromise, and anti-Palestinian workers when they are denied opportunities to work.” Both Larry Summers and Hillary Clinton have denounced BDS as anti-Semitic Jew hatred. Yet your school provides a platform and funding for its sponsors.

EU declares Israel boycott protected as free speech
The European Union’s foreign policy chief recently affirmed the right of EU citizens to boycott Israel, citing freedom of expression and rebuffing claims by Jerusalem that such measures amount to banned anti-Semitic activity.
While upholding the right of the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) movement to blacklist the Jewish state, Federica Mogherini also noted that the EU itself opposes efforts to boycott Israel.
“The EU stands firm in protecting freedom of expression and freedom of association in line with the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which is applicable on EU Member States’ territory, including with regard to BDS actions carried out on this territory,” Mogherini said in a written reply to a query by an Irish member of the European Parliament last month.
“Freedom of expression, as underlined by the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, is also applicable to information or ideas ‘that offend, shock or disturb the State or any sector of the population,’” Mogherini said.
She continued: “The EU rejects the BDS campaign’s attempts to isolate Israel and is opposed to any boycott of Israel.”
No ‘safe spaces’ for Jews? First hand account of hatred at Hen Mazzig event in London
A guest post by Harvey Garfield
Last Thursday in London, I attended a (CAMERA sponsored) UCL Jewish Society talk given by Hen Mazzig, an Israeli activist. I was well aware that with the Palestinian Facebook reminders of his status as an ex-officer of the IDF he stood no chance of speaking anywhere on the UCL campus, and when I arrived it soon became apparent that the original venue had been changed. It was no longer Archaeology G3, but an entirely different building and it took several calls to be updated of the new venue.
I arrived at the hastily arranged venue, only to be greeted by approx 60-80 pro-Palestinian supporters, mainly young Muslim women who had somehow got wind of the venue change. I was somewhat taken aback that there were so many women and I speculated whether this was an official strategy in order to present a softer side to Palestinian activism. If it was, the strategy failed since these women were more fanatical than many of the males I have encountered as part of my grass-roots pro-Israel activism . From the start they jostled for position directly in front of the doors in order to gain access and monopolise the room. They began a loud and passionate chorus of chants: ‘ River to the Sea Palestine will be Free’, etc which, as we all understand, puts paid to the very idea of a two state solution . In fact it puts paid to Israel as an independent Jewish homeland full stop. Several of the males were wearing keffiyehs covering their faces in order to avoid identification.
There were two university security guards present who were quite clearly overwhelmed by what was happening and who subsequently called the police. At this point the room was commandeered by the Palestinian side who had entered by a side door swiftly taking over the platform. Palestinian flags were unfurled and many of the women had whipped themselves up into a frenzy of anti-Israel hate.
Fall-out from UCL violence against Jews: Why are mainstream Jewish Organisations still supporting deceitful, Israel-hating organisation "Tell MAMA"?
The violent mob attack against Jews attending the talk by an Israeli at University College London has been widely reported. Yet in their classic inversion of reality style, there are some - like anti-Israel goon and liar Ben White - who have tried to portray the Jews as the trouble-makers, as can be seen from his Twitter feed below (incidentally the video was heavily edited and, according to an eyewitness, Elliott was "was shouting at group who'd hit women & abused gay speaker")***. But note who eagerly responded to this tweet seeing it as an opportunity to push more lies about 'Islamophobia'. Step forward Tell MAMA - the odious, deceitful, Israel-hating organisation that was set up with government funding to 'monitor Islamophobic attacks' (but in practice has been used to criminalise criticism of Islamist ideology and curtail free speech in the UK).
As I have reported many times before Tell MAMA continues to receive support from mainstream Jewish organisations like the Board of Deputies and CST. Indeed, in this article on their website CST brag that they:
"helped in the creation of Tell MAMA, a Muslim community initiative to measure and combat anti-Muslim hate crimes."
Some relevant information about Tell MAMA and its leader Fiyaz Mughal is reproduced below. Note the important update regarding his campaign against Tim Burton.
Legislators, pro-Israel orgs fight pro-BDS conference on Virginia campus
Lawmakers of the Virginia General Assembly, the board of the International Leaders Summit think tank and other individuals and organizations concerned with antisemitism recently called on George Mason University in Fairfax to stop the group Students for Justice in Palestine from holding its national conference there.
The event, set to take place next month, is hosted by the university’s Students Against Israeli Apartheid group.
In a letter addressed to university president Dr. Ángel Cabrera, the BDS opponents wrote that they are reaching out “on behalf of concerned citizens and the Jewish community.
“According to published reports and letters sent from state legislators, including our distinguished colleagues in New York, about Students for Justice in Palestine’s actions and statements, the antisemitic and anti-Israel group’s agenda is to promote the total destruction and elimination of the State of Israel,” the letter said. “[It] fuels intimidation and fear among Jewish and pro-Israel students and faculty members.
“According to reports from US college campuses, Students for Justice in Palestine continues to stoke the flames of hatred and incites violence and harassment against Jewish students and pro-Israel students,” it continued. “Criminal behavior on any university campus is unacceptable; it is an assault on individual liberty, the rule of law and the safety and well-being of citizens.”
Citi State They Are Not Sponsoring Roger Waters Tour
In the wake of this petition and following queries from a number of people, Citi have stated they are not sponsoring Roger Waters’ upcoming tour (hat tip: Steve).
This seems to be suggesting that Waters had mentioned Citi in his original post, not because they were ever sponsors, but rather as part of a pre-sale of tickets for card members as part of their entertainment access program.
I have reached out to Citi to clarify this and will update the post if I receive a response.
Either way, it seems there is no need for the petition and Roger Waters’ currency is devalued due to his unhinged attacks against Israel.
Daphne Anson: Nasty Nick Cotton's Noxious Nonsense (video)
"It's like Syria on a smaller scale, the Gaza Strip" casually proclaims BBC soap East Enders actor John Altman (aka "Nasty Nick Cotton") to receptive listeners at a leafleting demo against Hewlett-Packard by the Richmond and Kingston Palestine Solidarity Campaign branch a few days ago, in which that mendacious map set figures prominently.
(We met "Nasty Nick" some time ago sounding off at an event given by the same PSC branch, mendacious maps and all, at which Jenny Tonge also added her ten cents' worth against Israel.)
A challenge for Bishop Andrew Watson
As Daphne Anson notes, Stephen Sizer this week attended the now-notorious launch meeting of the “Balfour Apology Campaign” in the House of Lords, organised by the Palestine Return Centre and hosted by Jenny Tonge. He also wrote about it on his Facebook page:
It would seem that Revd Sizer has broken his February 2015 undertaking in two ways:
(1) He has attended a conference linked to Middle East campaigning; and
(2) he has informally written about the “historic backdrop” to the current situation in the Middle East (“It is time to say sorry for Britain’s historic duplicity to both Jews and Arabs”).
Revd Sizer has recently announced that he will be retiring from his role as vicar of Christ Church, Virginia Water, next Easter. It seems he will be taking on a new role as CEO of a new charity, “Peacemaker Mediators”.
If the words of his 2015 undertaking mean anything, Revd Sizer should surely be offering his resignation to his bishop immediately. However, the real question, surely, is how Bishop Andrew Watson will react to this development. Will he follow up on his strong warning, or meekly retract it now the time has come for enforcement?
BBC News gives a whitewashed account of ‘controversial’ meeting in House of Lords
Remarkably, this BBC report gives uncritical amplification to Jenny Tonge’s advancement of a well-worn trope concerning ‘powerful’ Jews:
“Speaking to the BBC, Baroness Tonge blamed the “power of the Israel lobby” and its sway over UK political parties for her suspension.”
As David Aaronovitch noted at the Sunday Times:
“Ten years ago the baroness did the old one about Jewish financial power in the form of “the pro-Israeli lobby has got its grips on the western world, its financial grips”. She got a reprimand from her party leader for it. Six years ago it was the ancient blood libel (Jews kill gentiles for their blood or body parts, see also under Shylock), when she demanded an inquiry into absurd allegations that an Israeli aid mission to Haiti was harvesting organs from Haitians. She lost a front bench job for that.”
One might therefore have expected the BBC to provide readers with some obviously relevant context concerning Tonge’s ignominious record of antisemitic statements – and to be able to recognise (and identify as such) a version of the Jewish lobby trope before promoting it in a quote. But sadly, the BBC’s own record on that particular topic has long been disturbingly dismal.
Indy blurs victim and perpetrator in bullying of gay, Jewish pro-peace activist of Mid-East origin
Though most news outlets we surveyed covered the story fairly, the Independent again demonstrated its characteristic anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian bias by blurring victim and perpetrator in both their headline and lead sentence.
Here’s the headline of the Oct. 29th article by Rachael Pells.:
Now, here’s the opening sentence:
Police were called to an event at University College London after violent clashes between pro-Palestinian protesters and members of a pro-Israeli group.
Though the strap line and quotes provided in the body of the article provide some clarifying information about the incident, the headline and opening sentence falsely suggest to readers that both parties were to blame.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Scholars: Haaretz ‘Likely A Forgery;’ ‘Utter Crap’ (satire)
Denshus pointed to the so-called paper’s adoption of a comically transparent effort to promote political organizations such as Btselem, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International, which the team noted in the article hold an analogous status in the human rights field – unconvincingly veiled political groups in the garb of organizations pretending to care about human rights per se, while in fact focusing disproportionately on the human rights of one population to the detriment of others.
An authentic newspaper, or even a more convincing forgery, he continued, would make an actual effort to present news coverage in an impartial manner. “The amateurishness with which this endeavor has been undertaken – especially when it comes to the English-language web site that Haaretz runs – leaves little doubt as to its provenance, or lack thereof,” he added. “It’s as if someone took Fox News, pulled it to the other end of the political spectrum, got rid of the handful of reasonable voices, translated it into highfalutin Hebrew, and gave it an austere logo.”
The team remains unsure what the motive might be for the elaborate hoax, since economic reward has not been associated with Haaretz for years. “Haaretz can claim perhaps three percent of market share,” observed Meg Gammati, a member of the research team. “That’s not sustainable, let alone financially rewarding. So the forgery is most likely the work of hobbyists, or perhaps satirists.”
Japanese teenyboppers dress as Nazis, spark furor
A Japanese teeny-bop girl band has triggered outrage after wearing military-style costumes which have been compared to Nazi uniforms at a Halloween concert.
Keyakizaka46 sparked an online storm with their black one-piece dresses and capes, complete with peaked caps bearing a golden bird symbol resembling the Nazi eagle.
Social media has lit up since the troupe took to the stage in Yokohama on October 22.
In a Twitter backlash, several users slammed their choice of costume as “unforgivable” and “unacceptable” while Berlin-based Japanese writer Ichika Rokuso posted: “Seventy-one years have passed since the war ended but there are many people who lost loved ones. Please remember that.”
Chabad sign at Texas A&M vandalized, stolen
A sign identifying the Chabad Jewish student center at Texas A&M University was vandalized and then stolen.
An unknown vandal was caught on a surveillance camera kicking and knocking down the sign, and then returning to steal it, the local media reported. The incident occurred between 3 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. Sunday.
The incident is not being investigated as a hate crime, but the head of the Chabad center, Rabbi Yossi Lazaroff, told the local news station KBTX that he believes the Jewish center was targeted.
“This is a very serious matter,” Lazaroff said, according to “This is a religious center, this is a synagogue and this type of behavior is something that is very surprising to me because in my 10 years that I’ve been here we’ve never had something like this happen. This was damage, this was vandalism.”
A crowdfunding page was launched Sunday to raise money for what Lazaroff said will be a bigger and better-lit sign.
In August, a 13-foot blue and white Hillel welcome banner was stolen and then later returned.
UN to serve kosher food in its cafeterias
The United Nations will begin serving kosher food in its cafeterias.
The decision Monday follows less than a month after Israel’s UN ambassador, Danny Danon, wrote to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon calling for the change, pointing out that many UN employees and diplomats from around the world observe kashrut, Ynet reported.
UN cafeterias already offer halal, vegetarian and vegan selections.
“For many Jews around the world, eating kosher food is a fundamental aspect of religious practice,” Danon wrote in his letter last month. “We believe that all citizens of the world should feel welcome in the UN.”
This year for the first time, no official meetings took place on Yom Kippur at the UN’s New York headquarters, and Jewish employees were able to stay home from work without using vacation time.
Israel-praising Evangelical bishop wins runoff election for Rio mayor
Known to the world for its skin-baring beach culture and exuberant Carnival parades, Rio de Janeiro overwhelmingly chose an evangelical bishop as a mayor Sunday, signaling a resurgence of conservatism in Latin America’s largest nation.
Sen. Marcelo Crivella easily beat his opponent, socialist state Rep. Marcelo Freixo, taking 59 percent of the votes against 41 percent in the municipal runoff election. Rio was one of 57 Brazilian cities holding runoff votes.
The conservative Crivella’s triumph is the latest display of widespread anger at Brazil’s established left-wing parties amid the country’s worst recession in decades and the aftermath of an impeachment trial that threw the Workers’ Party out after 13 years in power. It’s also a sign of the rise of evangelical churches like Pentecostals.
Although Crivella had run and lost in previous mayoral and gubernatorial elections, in opinion polls that preceded the election he was clearly favored by Cariocas, the name by which Rio residents are known.
“I pray to God that my public life, as rocky as it has been, can teach all Cariocas that our time always comes when we do not give up,” Crivella told a crowd of supporters Sunday.
Italian President Mattarella arrives in Israel for first official visit
Italian President Sergio Mattarella began a four-day visit in Israel on Sunday, shortly after another major earthquake hit central Italy.
Mattarella, who is visiting Israel for the first time as president, was briefed on the earthquake but chose to continue with the visit as planned.
Mattarella is expected to meet with President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his visit.
His first stop was the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial and museum in Jerusalem. After touring the museum, he laid a wreath at the Hall of Remembrance and wrote in the Yad Vashem guest book: "The Shoah poses a fundamental question about the absolute evil and darkness that existed, about the abyss in the heart of Europe that swallowed up millions of innocent people. [The victims] ask us not to forget. ... As Primo Levi wrote, 'Understanding is impossible, knowing is imperative.' We must remember, to make sure it will never happen again."
Mattarella also visited the grave of Israel's ninth president, Shimon Peres, at the Great Leaders of the Nation plot on Mount Herzl.
IDF to train UN peacekeeping forces in field medicine
United Nations peacekeeping forces are scheduled to participate in a special emergency field medicine seminar headed by the Israeli military and local medical professionals, Israel Hayom learned Sunday.
The seminar, to be held in the next few weeks, aims to address one of the fundamental challenges U.N. peacekeeping forces face in their assignments in conflict zones worldwide: saving lives on the battlefield.
"We are very proud to invite U.N. peacekeeping forces to Israel, where they can learn from the world's top professionals on the unique methods Israel uses to deal with cases involving emergency medicine on the ground," Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon said.
"Unfortunately, Israel has vast firsthand experience in how crucial it is to have professional emergency medicine. We hope U.N. personnel will be able to implement our methods and save lives worldwide."

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem has a remarkable monograph published two years ago called "The Future of Christians in the Middle East" written by Rev. David Neuhaus.

Remarkably, the document tries to downplay the dangers of radical Islam to Christians, by pointing out that they are not the only targets:

Fear is linked to a term on the lips of many who observe what is happening: persecution of Christians. There is no doubt that some Christians have been killed because their Muslim extremist executors see them as infidels, polytheists or Western spies. However, as the Justice and Peace Commission of the Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries in the Holy Land pointed out:

In the name of truth, we must point out that Christians are not the only victims of this violence and savagery. Secular Muslims, all those defined as “heretic”, “schismatic” or simply “non-conformist” are being attacked and murdered in the prevailing chaos. In areas where Sunni extremists dominate, Shiites are being slaughtered. In areas where Shiite extremists dominate, Sunnis are being killed. Yes, the Christians are at times targeted precisely because they are Christians, having a different set of beliefs and unprotected. However they fall victim alongside many others who are suffering and dying in these times of death and destruction. They are driven from their homes alongside many others and together they become refugees, in total destitution.

It is also clear that the term “persecution” when it is used uniquely to describe Christian suffering in the contemporary Middle East, is often being manipulated within the context of a particular political agenda whose aim is to sow prejudice and hatred, setting Christians against Muslims.
Even worse, the document tries to lump the Jews together with (some) Muslims as persecutors of Christians:
Hundreds of thousands of Christians have left behind their homelands not only in Iraq and Syria, but also in Egypt, Palestine, Israel and elsewhere, and immigrated to the West, to the New World, to more welcoming Arab countries like Jordan and Lebanon, in the wake of the collapse of a known political order.
Christians are more comfortable in Lebanon or Jordan than in Israel? Hundreds of thousands of Christians have fled Lebanon in the past 50 years, and the percentage of Christians in Jordan has plummeted from 20% in 1930 to 4% today.

These are the writings of a dhimmi who wants to ensure that the dwindling population of Christians in the Middle East don't rock the boat, so he tells them that Islam is tolerant and Israel is also a place from which Christians feel they must flee.

The author converted from Judaism to Christianity.

(h/t Irene)

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
From Ian:

Palestinian cop shoots, injures 3 IDF soldiers
Three Israeli soldiers were wounded, one seriously, in a shooting attack by a Palestinian police officer at a checkpoint outside the West Bank city of Ramallah on Monday, according to officials.
According to the Israel Defense Forces, the gunmen approached the Focus checkpoint, near the Jewish settlement of Beit El, and opened fire with an AK-47 assault rifle at the troops stationed there, the army said.
“The force responded [to the attack] with return fire at the terrorist,” the army said.
The assailant was shot and killed by Israeli forces, an IDF spokesperson said.
The gunman was named as Muhammad Turkman, a police officer, by the official Palestinian Authority news outlet al-Hayat al-Jadida.
The soldiers were all approximately 20 years old and sustained “penetrating wounds” — meaning gunshot injuries — to the extremities, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.
PMW: PA official defends naming school after mastermind of Munich Olympics massacre
Following Palestinian Media Watch's report on a new Palestinian Authority school named after Salah Khalaf, one of the planners of the murders of the 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972, District Governor of Tulkarem Issam Abu Bakr, who is a PA official, defended the naming of the school after the terrorist.
After the Israeli Prime Minister's Arabic spokesman Ofir Gendelman responded to PMW's report and tweeted about the naming of the "Martyr Salah Khalaf School," the PA official replied with praise for the terrorist and others like him, stating that Palestinians will never forget them:
"The occupation is deluded if it thinks that the Palestinian people can change its culture and forget its leaders, Martyrs Yasser Arafat, Khalil Al-Wazir (Abu Jihad), Salah Khalaf, and a great number of the fighters who sacrificed their blood for the freedom, independence, and establishment of the independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem." [Ma'an, independent PA news agency, Oct. 26, 2016]
Fatah also glorified the Munich Olympics massacre this week, honoring Muhammad Daoud Oudeh, another of the planners of the terror attack, boasting that they "executed" the Israeli athletes "in the heart of Germany":
Posted text: "Picture of Muhammad Daoud 'Abu Daoud,' one of the leaders of Fatah's Black September organization and the main planner of the Munich operation that executed the Israeli Olympic delegation in 1972 in the heart of Germany."
[Official Fatah Facebook page, Oct. 24, 2016, emphasis added]

Mosul, CNN, ISIS and Israel
An American led coalition is fighting Islamic State (ISIS) in its Iraqi stronghold of Mosul. This is very similar to Israel's battles against the terror group Hamas. So why does CNN report on Israel so differently? Why the double standard?

Israel Calls on Google, Apple to Remove ‘False, Aggressive’ Gaza Game App Encouraging Violence Against IDF Soldiers
According to the report, Gilad Erdan was complaining about “Liyla and the Shadows of War,” which invites users to put themselves in the shoes of a Palestinian girl in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge, Israel’s war against Hamas in the summer of 2014.
The description of the free app, developed by Gaza resident Rasheed Abueideh, is as follows:
When you live in a war zone and death is hunting everyone, things will look different and choices become harder. Face your fate in an unjust war to survive with your family from the shadows of war.
Time is running against you, your family is in danger and there is nowhere to hide or to do but to get them out of home through a hero journey to a safer place.
Shooting and bombing everywhere and it will hunt you unless you make fast decisions as you progress through different events. These events are real and they will make you choose the hard way. Live or die!
Since its release in May, the game — which portrays Israeli soldiers as murderers — has been downloaded more than 100,000 times. Though the Apple App Store makes no mention of Gaza or Operation Protective Edge, Abueideh states on the game’s site that it is “based on actual events; it tells a story of a little girl liv[ing] in Gaza during the war in 2014.”
Where Human Rights Come Second
Give the United Nations a cheer–but not two.
On Friday, Russia lost its seat on the United Nations Human Rights Council. It tells you something about the moral standards of the UN that this was seen as a huge surprise. Russia, mind you, has been turned into a complete dictatorship by Vladimir Putin. It has invaded Ukraine and illegally annexed Crimea. Now it is committing war crimes with its indiscriminate bombing of Aleppo. But it was still a shock that Russia was denied a seat on the UN body charged with adjudicating human rights abuses–an organization that has been fit to issue “scathing assessments” of the state of human rights in the United States.
While mercifully voting Russia off the Human Rights Council, however, General Assembly members, in their infinite wisdom, chose to reappoint China and Saudi Arabia–two countries where civil liberties are as unknown as they are in Russia. But then, the Chinese and Saudi Arabian ambassadors will fit right in next to their compatriots from Burundi, Venezuela, Ethiopia, Kyrgyzstan, Qatar, Vietnam, and other illiberal states.
The Human Rights Council was created after the previous UN Commission on Human Rights was thoroughly discredited. It became notorious in 2004 for granting a seat to Sudan at the height of its mass killing in Darfur. It was also guilty of flagrant anti-American and anti-Israeli bias. Unfortunately, the UN Human Rights Council hasn’t done much better.
As the Council on Foreign Relations noted in 2009, two years after the council’s creation: “Experts say bloc voting, loose membership standards, and bias against Israel are keeping the two-year-old council from living up to expectations as a responsible watchdog over global human rights norms. It is earning a failing grade from a broad range of groups, including human rights advocates, international law experts, and democracy activists.”
India and UNESCO: Historical View vs. Jihad View
King Solomon built the First Temple here around 1000 BC. The Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar tore it down 400 years later. In the first century BC, King Herod refurbished a Second Temple. It is here that Jesus Christ lashed out against the money-changers. The Roman General Titus exacted revenge against Jewish rebels, sacking and burning the Temple in 70 AD.
UNESCO seeks to erase this history of faiths and replace it with a jihadi narrative that would deny both Christians and Jews their age-old access to the symbols of their faiths. If they are not stopped, the Islamist backers of the UNESCO resolution will be emboldened eventually to back Islamist elements in India to question its Hindu historical and religious sites.
After so many recent votes at UNESCO erasing Judeo-Christian history in favour of Islamist misrepresentation one thing is clear: the sooner democracies leave the UN, the better. Consider the UN's oil-for-food scandal of 2004-2005 and its growing sex-for-food scandal that is still ongoing. Now, with the UN's wholesale erasure of Biblical history, the only intelligent response is to head for the exits. The UN seems nothing more than a bloated, corrupt jobs program of champagne for diplomats. It does far more harm than good. Nothing worth having can come from such a degraded place.
Yisrael Medad: Jews Do Not ‘Occupy’ Their Own Homeland
The Roman historian Tacitus wrote about the Jews. In 109 CE.
About Jerusalem.
About the Jewish Temple, that existed.
About Judaea.
He was not Jewish. He wasn’t “biblical.”
He was an external source of testimony to the truth of what went on in a phantom geographical unit supposedly known as something termed “Palestine” which actually was the Jewish national home.
A.D. 70
Early in this year Titus Caesar, who had been selected by his father to complete the subjugation of Judaea, and who had gained distinction as a soldier while both were still subjects, began to rise in power and reputation…He found in Judaea three legions, the 5th, the 10th, and the 15th, all old troops of Vespasian’s. To these he added the 12th from Syria, and some men belonging to the 18th and 3rd, whom he had withdrawn from Alexandria. This force was accompanied by twenty cohorts of allied troops and eight squadrons of cavalry, by the two kings Agrippa and Sohemus, by the auxiliary forces of king Antiochus, by a strong contingent of Arabs, who hated the Jews with the usual hatred of neighbours [note: “neighbors’. not residents of the same country -YM], and, lastly, by many persons brought from the capital and from Italy by private hopes of securing the yet unengaged affections of the Prince. With this force Titus entered the enemy’s territory, preserving strict order on his march, reconnoitring every spot, and always ready to give battle. At last he encamped near Jerusalem.
‘Our answer to a UNSC resolution must be annexation of settlements”
Israel’s answer to any United Nations Security Council resolution on settlements must be the annexation of Area C of the West Bank, Education Minister Naftali Bennett said at a political meeting in Jerusalem on Sunday.
“The UNSC resolution should be a trigger to put this plan into action,” he said at a conference of the National Union party.
But many settlers and right-wing politicians are not waiting for the UNSC to take action. To mark the opening day of the Knesset on Monday, they plan to hold a demonstration to demand that the legislature pass a bill to annex the third-largest West Bank settlement, Ma’aleh Adumim, which is home to more than 37,000 people.
Already on Sunday morning they began a campaign, in which they plastered buildings with large photographs of former prime ministers, including Shimon Peres, Ehud Barak and Ariel Sharon, who spoke of the city’s eternal place in Israel and its importance in protecting Jerusalem.
UN investigator to Israel: Give PA complete control of Area C
Candian UNHRC investigator Michael Lynk says Israel must give full control over Judea and Samaria to the Palestinian Authority.
"Allow the Palestinian Authority to assume security control in Area B and civil and security control in Area C so as to end the geographic fragmentation of the occupied Palestinian territory," Lynk said.
Area A is under full PA control, and Jews are forbidden to enter it. If a Jew were to enter Area A, chances are high he would not come out alive, and would suffer abuse and brutality before he was finally killed. Area B is under PA civil control, but the IDF controls security of the area, while Area C is under full Israeli civil and security control.
All Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria are located in Area C, along with several Arab villages.
Lynk also blamed the "occupation" on Israel's "settlement enterprise."
"Without Israel's settlement project, there would be no rationale for the continuing occupation," he said. "Israel's discriminatory planning regime, particularly in East Jerusalem and Area C, minimizes or excludes Palestinian participation."
He also said Israel acted as "a colonial-like regime in the occupied Palestinian territory, with two separate and unequal systems as regards laws, roads, justice regime, access to water, social services, freedom of mobility, political and civil rights, security and living standards."
Ironically, Lynk claimed Israel creates a "coercive environment that exacerbates the risk of individual and mass forced transfer" by not permitting Arabs to build and demolishing their homes. He also said forced transfer is a war crime.
National Post Editorial: The Anti-Israel Virus that Pervades the UN
The Liberal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has declared its determination to “re-engage” with the UN after a decade in which the Conservative government kept its distance. Trudeau insisted this would not involve dilution of Canada’s firm support for Israel. “Israel is a friend, Israel is an ally, Israel is a country that has values and an approach on many, many issues that are very much aligned with Canadian values,” he said, adding, “at the same time … we won’t hesitate from talking about unhelpful steps like the continued illegal settlements. We will point that out. We will continue to engage in a forthright and open way because that’s what people expect of Canada.”
Engaging in a “forthright and open” discussion of “unhelpful steps” would certainly include condemnation of a resolution as blatantly one-sided and biased as the one approved by UNESCO. Trudeau has recognized that “the double standard that’s often applied to Israel” does not help bring peace to the region, yet that very same double standard is what’s on display here.
Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion responded on Twitter, by saying that “Canada strongly rejects @UNESCO World Heritage Cmte for res. singling out #Israel & denying Judaism’s link to Old City + Western Wall. Old City important to 3 faiths – to deny one undermines integrity of site for all and the purpose of UNESCO.”
Is that the best Canada can do? If so, it undermines Trudeau’s claim that Israel will retain Canada’s strong support. It will take more than a pair of tweets to root out the anti-Israel virus that pervades the UN. Canada should make clear its determination to take concrete steps to destroy the hatred that lies behind it. One hundred and 40 characters is simply not enough.
UNESCO's Insult
Since the U.S. in 2011 withdrew its funding of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) after it granted the Palestinian Authority full membership, little has changed within the so-called cultural arm of Turtle Bay. Witness its latest resolution:
In further appeasement to Palestinians, UNESCO dismissed the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem to Israel, which it refers to as the “occupying power,” The Daily Signal reports. And while UNESCO notes the significance of Jerusalem's holy sites to Christianity, Islam and Judaism, it specifies only Muslim holy sites, according to The Daily Signal.
“To say that Israel has no connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall is like saying that China has no connection to the Great Wall of China,” said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Subsequently Israel has suspended its cooperation with UNESCO.
Rightfully so, the U.S. has suspended its UNESCO funding — U.S. laws prohibit funding any U.N. agency that grants membership to the Palestine Liberation Organization — but America remains an agency member. The Obama administration has tried repeatedly to change the law to allow U.S. funding. In effect, that would reward Palestinian efforts to avoid a negotiated peace or even recognizing Israel.
UNESCO has made clear its anti-Israel bias. The U.S. should make equally clear its objection by fully withdrawing from UNESCO.
PLO Official says he is concerned Israel will prevent international peace conference
Ahmad Majdalani, top adviser to PA President Mahmoud Abbas, said on Sunday that the Palestinian Authority leadership still hopes to participate in an international peace conference in Paris before the end of the year but fears that Israel will prevent it from taking place.
“I cannot say with certainty that [the conference] will take place, because the Israeli government is placing all the possible obstacles and impasses in front of it,” Majdalani, who also serves as a PLO executive committee member, told The Jerusalem Post, adding, “I don’t think Israel will participate and it is also pressuring its allies not to participate.”
The PA leadership has vigorously lobbied for an international peace conference that includes multiple international parties, since the conclusion of the Iran nuclear deal in June 2015.
Majdalani added that if the conference does not take place, the French government could recognize the state of Palestine.
“The French government is responsible for making its own decision, but it has already said that the issue of recognizing the state of Palestine is on the table,” he said.
Report: Israel ‘Panicked’ by Quality, Quantity of Russian Presence, Weaponry in Region, Which Dramatically Hamper IDF Operations
The IDF is in a panic about the Russian military’s presence and deployment of sophisticated weaponry in the region, Israel’s Channel 2 reported on Sunday.
According to the report, though the IDF is not admitting this openly, high-ranking officers have said behind closed doors that the “surprising” quality and quantity of Russian systems in the area is dramatically hampering the way the Israeli Air Force and Navy are able to operate.
Both these branches of the IDF, according to Channel 2, were used to flying and sailing wherever and whenever they saw fit, with no real threat to their movement. But since Russia began to intervene in the Syrian civil war last year in an attempt to protect the regime of President Bashar Assad, things have changed.
One particular worry, the report said, was the impending arrival of the Admiral Kuznetsov, Russia’s flagship aircraft carrier, which is on its way from the North Sea to the Middle East, and is expected to anchor off the Mediterranean coast of Syria in the coming weeks.
The Kuznetsov force is made up of some 1,900 sailors, more than 50 advanced fighter jets, the latest aeronautical defense systems, radars and among the world’s best electronic warfare capabilities. The force has anti-submarine capabilities and boats with a wide range of missiles for aerial photography and intelligence-gathering.
Coalition members to boycott speeches by Joint List’s MKs
Knesset members from the Likud-led governing coalition are planning to stage a walkout during all plenary speeches by Joint List lawmakers, over the predominantly Arab faction’s decision not to send any representatives to the funeral of former president Shimon Peres.
MKs from the six parties in the coalition will leave the Knesset chamber when members of the Joint List speak from the podium during all sessions this week, coalition chair David Bitan told reporters Monday.
In response, the Joint List Knesset members walked out of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech inaugurating the Knesset’s winter session on Monday.
Knesset members were returning from a three-month summer recess during which Peres, the longest-serving MK in Israel’s history as well as a former prime minister, died.
Minor Involved in Murder That Sparked Palestinian Terror Surge Sentenced to 9 Years in Prison
The minor involved in the murder of Alexander Levlovich, 64, whose death came to signify the beginning of last year’s wave of terror across Israel, received a prison sentence of nine years Monday morning as part of a plea bargain in which he confessed to all charges leveled against him and agreed to testify against four other accomplices. The Levlovich family will also be compensated with NIS 10,000 as part of the plea bargain.
The sentence comes just over a year after Levlovich was fatally wounded on the eve of Rosh Hashana in 2015—the Jewish new year— when he lost control of his car after it was pelted with stones by Palestinians. He was returning home after a festive meal.
Three suspects indicted for manslaughter
The indictment against the terrorists was submitted a year ago, while the plea bargain on behalf of the minor was submitted Monday morning. As part of the latter, the charges were reduced from manslaughter to accessory to manslaughter.
PreOccupiedTerritory: SJP Demands Local Y Stop Offering Krav Maga Course (satire)
A chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine is calling for a local community center to cancel its plans to give instruction in an Israeli-developed martial art, with the claim that offering the course legitimizes Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.
SJP activists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign held a protest this morning outside the city’s Young Men’s/Women’s Christian Association, (YM/YWCA) in response to a notice on the Y’s website and Facebook Page that registration for a Krav Maga course had commenced, with instruction to begin in two weeks. Eighteen demonstrators attempted to block the entrance to the facility, and engaged in vociferous exchanges with staff and visitors. The protest disbanded before police arrived to break it up.
Krav Maga, or “contact combat,” originated with a Czechoslovakian Jew who adapted boxing, wrestling, and martial arts principles in the 1930’s to help defend Jews in Bratislava from antisemitic thugs. He further adapted the form to the needs of combat soldiers in the nascent IDF in the 1940’s, and he and his associates continued to refine and teach it through the ensuing decades. Krav Maga eventually became a feature of hand-to-hand combat training in police and military forces around the world, and is offered to private citizens seeking to augment their personal safety. Because of its Israeli pedigree, opponents of Israel’s existence and policies who study at the Urbana-Champaign campus have seized on it as a target of their pro-Palestinian advocacy.
“Stop enabling war crimes!” read one of the posters at the demonstration. “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!” they chanted.
Abbas rival Dahlan rules out Palestinian presidency run
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s top internecine rival, Mohammad Dahlan, often mentioned as a possible candidate to succeed the 81-year-old leader, said Sunday he will not run for president in future Palestinian elections.
In a long interview with the Palestinian news agency Ma’an, Dahlan said he supports Marwan Barghouti to become president, out of “personal belief” and because according to opinion polls, Barghouti — who is currently in Israeli jail for multiple murder convictions and for anti-Israel terror activity — is the preferred choice of the Palestinian people.
The former Gaza strongman, for years estranged from the Palestinian leader’s power base, said he is willing to reconcile with Abbas, but asked for “the magic recipe” that could make it happen.
Anyone who thinks Fatah isn’t being run “like a private company,” he said, “is either disingenuous or deluded.”
West Bank Arms Itself in Run-Up to Succession War for Post-Abbas Era
On a recent Friday, dozens of security men dressed in green-olive uniforms were deployed along the main street near Balata refugee camp, in the northern West Bank city of Nablus, and exchanged fire with gunmen who were shooting from the camp's alleyways.
Echoes of the gunfire were heard across the camp of 17,000 refugees and the city's nearby neighborhoods, frightening the residents, and their children in particular.
Over the next few days, similar clashes erupted in Jenin refugee camp, as well as the in al-Amari refugee camp near Ramallah.
“They are Fatah gunmen,” said Jihad Harb of the militants who have been opening fire on Palestinian security forces. Harb is a commentator who lives in Balata, the biggest and most impoverished refugee camp in West Bank.
He said he sees three kinds of armed men in Balata: gunmen from Fatah, who are funded by and loyal to various leaders in the movement; gunmen from criminal gangs involved mostly in the drugs and arms trades; and gunmen from the Palestinian Authority, funded by security apparatus and local governors.
The situation in Balata refugee camp is being replicated in refugee camps, cities and villages across the West Bank.
Lebanon's new pro-Hezbollah president vows to retake 'Israeli-occupied' land
The Lebanese parliament elected former army commander and Hezbollah ally Michel Aoun as president on Monday, ending a 29-month presidential vacuum as part of a political deal that is expected to make Sunni leader Saad al-Hariri prime minister.
Aoun, who is in his 80s, secured the presidency by winning the support of at least 65 MPs, or an absolute majority of the members of the 128-seat chamber, according to a Reuters tally of votes read out in a televised broadcast from parliament.
The Lebanese presidency is reserved for a Maronite Christian in the country's sectarian power-sharing system.
In 2006, Aoun signed a formal agreement of alliance between his Free Patriotic Movement and Hezbollah, and has consistently backed the Shi’ite group ever since.
In remarks made after the election aimed at Hezbollah backers, Aoun vowed to "release what is left of our lands from the Israeli occupation," referring to contested territories along the border with the Jewish state.
Saudi Arabia: ISIS plot to bomb 60,000 sports fans foiled
Saudi Arabian officials reported on Sunday that it had successfully thwarted an ISIS-linked terrorist plot to attack up to 60,000 sports fans at a soccer stadium in the port city of Jeddah, according to Iranian state news agency PressTV.
The Saudi Interior Ministry said that four suspected Islamic State operatives were arrested one day before executing a plan to bomb the King Abdullah Sports City Stadium, also known as the “Luminous Jewel,” during a UAE-Saudi FIFA World Cup qualifying match on October 11.
“Daesh wants any operation that could result in the highest number of victims,” said an Interior Ministry spokesperson, using the Arabic acronym for Islamic State.
According to Press TV citing Saudi security officials, a vehicle containing an estimated 400 kilograms (882 pounds) of explosive material was discovered near the stadium parking lot.
“Another equally horrifying scenario would have occurred had the device exploded whilst the spectators were exiting the stadium,” the spokesman added.
Jewish MP denies telling Israel media Iran deterred from war
Iran’s sole Jewish parliamentarian has denied speaking to Israeli media, hours after an Israeli radio station played a tape of him telling the broadcaster that Tehran was not seeking war with Israel, since doing so would amount to “suicide” by the Islamic Republic.
In a recent interview, Siamak Moreh Sedgh told Israel Radio’s Paris correspondent Gideon Kotz that he believed Iranian leadership to be “healthy and wise enough to avoid a war with Israel,” and asserted that war between the two countries was not “probable” at the moment.
“Iran does not want to start a war against Israel, because they know that everyone who starts a war in the Middle East is doing suicide,” Moreh Sedgh can be heard saying in a recording of the English-language interview that aired on Sunday.
However, by Sunday evening Iran’s semi-official Fars News reported that Moreh Sedgh denied speaking to “Zionist media” and rejected “claims” made in a Times of Israel report on the interview.
“I have had no interview with the Israeli Radio and deny both the report and the interview,” the Jewish lawmaker told Fars. “I do not answer phone calls and questions from the Zionist media because they are not the creatures that we want to answer.”

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The Fatah Facebook page is filled with posts about Yasir Arafat as the 12th anniversary of his death is coming up. Literally two out of every three posts is dedicated to Arafat. During the rest of the year, the ratio is about one in three posts on Arafat, a tacit admission that the current Palestinian leadership has not ignited any passion in the ensuring 12 years.

This one sums the Arafat posts up nicely::

It is Arafat's terrorism, not his supposed desire for peace, that Palestinians remember him for.

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Things are starting to fall apart in both the PA and Hamas-controlled territories.

In Gaza, Hamas quietly arrested and reportedly tortured one of its own senior leaders, Mushr al-Masri, on alleged charges of embezzlement and treason.

Reports say that he was briefly transferred to a hospital because of the beatings he endured, only to return to the prison.

News reports say that Hamas has arrested a number of its own in recent months on charges of collaborating with Israel, and some have been executed while the official cover story is that they were killed "while performing tasks of jihad."

On the West Bank, however, things look even worse for the PA.

The pro-Fatah Palestine Press Agency reports that the increasing number of clashes between various armed groups, and between these groups and and PA security forces, are all part of attempts to position themselves ahead of any power struggle if Abbas dies or otherwise leaves without a strong successor.

There have been armed clashes between Fatah armed groups and other armed gangs who are making money on illegal drugs and arms, in the Balata camp and elsewhere. The PA security forces are reportedly providing weapons to some armed groups to buy their loyalty in case things go south quickly. Unemployed youths in the camps are susceptible to being recruited to these armed groups. The residents are very worried that a civil war will break out as soon as Abbas is gone without designating a clear successor that is accepted by the people - a prospect that seems dim.

The planned Fatah conference in November may make things worse if it doesn't address these issues. And the increased pressure from Egypt and Gulf states on Abbas to get his act together is putting everyone on edge.

There are big problems in the territories, and things could explode sooner rather than later.

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I glanced at the most recently released John Podesta emails on Wikileaks to see what might not have been reported yet.

Podesta seems to have subscribed to daily blogposts from the ultra-left Tikkun magazine. For example, one day during the 2014 Gaza war he received an article that started off with
For decades, Israel has slaughtered Palestinians with impunity, always protected by the U.S. government and its veto at the UN Security Council. But the latest bloody assault on Gaza has prompted more open talk about Israeli war crimes - and U.S. complicity, says Marjorie Cohn.
This daily demonization of Israel clearly didn't bother Podesta, and in fact there are lots of similar missives in his email box.

Other mailing lists that Podesta subscribes to include "Spiritual Progressives," which like Tikkun was also spearheaded by Clinton family favorite Michael Lerner, and the leftist website Truthout, which would quote anti-Israel media personalities like Amy Goodman of "Democracy Now!"

Between this and what we already knew from Clinton's own emails, it is clear that the far-left Jewish community represented by J-Street and Tikkun are the only opinions that she and her aides listen to about Israel.

But I saw one email that showed that Clinton's leftist policy on Israel draws a clear line on BDS. An internal email from the pro-Clinton Saban Family Foundation, which was copied to Podesta, said:
Hi All - I thought you might find this of interest: the Israel on Campus Coalition held a recent call regarding polling that they conducted this past semester. I'll send a fuller sum later, but there was one statistic that I think you would appreciate:
* Once informed about Hillary Clinton's letter opposing BDS, the favorable/unfavorable views held by students regarding pro-BDS arguments shifted 11 points in the right direction.
Just a reflection that she remains a trusted source to students on these issues, and I'm glad to see she is out there conveying this viewpoint.
That is not insignificant. A single letter from Hillary Clinton to college students seems to have hurt the BDS movement on campus more than the millions being spent by Israel and by Jewish donors to combat it. Her progressive bona-fides give her credibility among young people that people who explicitly identify as Zionists can never approach.  

There's a lot more there, like discussions about how to get the media to report on this letter to help Clinton shore up her support from Jews.

The campaign's antipathy towards Netanyahu is total; I cannot find a kind word about him or Israel's elected government anywhere. There are emails about how Clinton should navigate speaking to the Jewish community about Israel without appearing anti-Netanyahu but also not anti-Obama.

In that vein, one letter from Stuart Eizenstat indicates that supposed right-wing Israeli ambassador to the US, Ron Dermer, was essentially advising Clinton on how to support the Iran deal - which he knew she would never go against - and yet distance herself from the worst of Obama's policies concerning Israel. By my sights, Clinton is following Dermer's playbook fairly closely, although whether this is deliberate or coincidental is an open question.

The overall impression from the campaign is that Hillary is above all a politician whose views are more shaped by what would get her elected than what she really believes. The only way to guess what she believes is to look at who she chooses as her advisors, and the most consistent message from them is of a leftist, J-Street and Tikkun Magazine-oriented view of Israel.

Its existence is not questioned  - no one supports BDS, no one supports a one-state solution.  Everything else about the Jewish state is not only questioned but often harshly criticized by her team, which then scrambles to soften the message for the average Jewish voter to help her get elected, which is the only supreme value about her that shines through.

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Sunday, October 30, 2016

A Jerusalem Post story about the second president of the United States, John Adams, prompted me to look up the fuller context of two major quotes from him.

 Adams, who was born on October 30, 1735, in Braintree, Massachusetts, grew up in a household based on Puritan values. The Puritans believed themselves to be like the Israelite's fleeing Egypt, wandering into the vast and unknown wilderness and reaching the promised land of the New World.
As their guide, they used the Bible, adopting biblical customs, established biblical codes, such as observance of the Sabbath, and gave their children Hebrew names.
In 1808, in a letter to Dutch Patriot leader and American immigrant François Adriaan van der Kemp, Adams wrote:

I will insist the Hebrews have [contributed] more to civilize men than any other nation. If I was an atheist and believed in blind eternal fate, I should still believe that fate had ordained the Jews to be the most essential instrument for civilizing the nations ...

They are the most glorious nation that ever inhabited this Earth. The Romans and their empire were but a bubble in comparison to the Jews. They have given religion to three-quarters of the globe and have influenced the affairs of mankind more and more happily than any other nation, ancient or modern.
Note that Adams, like most people throughout history, naturally thought of Jews as a nation, not merely a religion.

And he made that even more clear in this 1819  letter to Mordecai M. Noah:

M. M. Noah Esq. 
March 15th. 1819 
Dear Sir, 
I have to thank you for another valuable publication your travels in “Europe
Africa” which though I cannot see well enough to read. I can hear as well
ever & accordingly have heard read two thirds of it & shall in course hear all
the rest. It is a magazine of ancient & modern learning of judicious observa-
tions & ingenious reflections. I have been so pleased with it that I wish you
had continued your travels-into Syria. Judea & Jerusalem. I should attend
more to your remarks upon those interesting countries than to those of any
traveller I have yet read. If I were to let my imagination loose I should wish
you had been a member of Napoleons Institute at Cairo nay farther I
could find it in my heart to wish that you had been at the head of a hundred
thousand Israelites indeed as well disciplined as a French Army-& marching
with them into Judea & making a conquest of that country & restoring your
nation to the dominion of it. For I really wish the Jews again in Judea an
independent nation.
For I believe the most enlightened men of it have
participated in the ameliorations of the philosophy of the age, once restored
to an independent government & no longer persecuted they would soon wear
away some of the asperities & peculiarities of their character & possibly in
time become liberal Unitarian Christians for your Jehovah is our Jehovah
your God of Abraham Isaac & Jacob is our God. I am Sir with respect
esteem your obliged humble servant.
John Adams 
Like most British and American proto-Zionists, the desire for Jews to return to Zion was based on the idea that this would be a precursor to them being converted en masse to Christianity. Nevertheless, the desire by many prominent Christians for Jews to return to their homeland cannot be denied, and was a major reason why Zionism was politically successful.

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From Middle East Eye:

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has failed to resolve his stand-off with Egypt or Hamas, according to senior officials who spoke to Middle East Eye.

The officials told MEE the recent meeting between Abbas and top Hamas leaders in Doha made no progress toward ending the long-running split between the two camps.

Dr Khalil al-Hayeh, a member of Hamas's political bureau, said that Abbas “clung to his old positions and showed no flexibility in the meeting".
Which is exactly what I wrote on Friday.

Arab media confirms that both sides didn't show any flexibility.

The article adds:
The relationship between President Abbas and Egypt's leader has deteriorated in the last couple of months, with Abbas decrying what he has called “Egyptian intervention in Palestinian affairs".

Egypt has reportedly led efforts to press Abbas to bring exiled Fatah leader Mohammed Dahlan backed into Palestinian politics.

When Abbas rejected the efforts, Egyptian intelligence held a conference in Cairo discussing the relationship between Egypt and the Palestinian cause, which one Palestinian official said was an attempt by Egyptian intelligence to put more pressure on Abbas.

The official said Egyptian intelligence officers made phone calls to Palestinian study centers in Ramallah and tried to persuade them to participate in the conference in Cairo.

“That was a stark intervention in our affairs,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Dahlan enjoys the regional support of the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Jordan. UAE leaders have also tried to persuade Saudi Arabia that Dahlan is a strong potential successor to octagenarian Abbas.

Abbas plans to hold a Fatah party convention by the end of November, which he is expected to use to block Dahlan's return.
Dahlan does seem to be an important if missing player in all of this drama.

Times of Israel, while making more out of the meeting than it appears to have been, notes the background:
These meetings took place after Abbas met the previous week with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani.
Erdogan and Sheikh Tamim are considered strong patrons of the Muslim Brotherhood, the great rival of Egypt and its president, Abdel Fattah el-Sissi.
So what — or, rather, who — has led Abbas straight into the arms of the Muslim Brotherhood, and maybe even into those of Hamas, just days after a high-ranking Hamas official in Gaza called him a traitor?
The answer is simple: Mohammad Dahlan. This former high-ranking Fatah official, who has been challenging Abbas for several years, succeeded this week in areas where even Hamas has failed. He managed to get Cairo on his side in the fight against Abbas and proved how weak and shaky Abbas’s status is in the Arab world.
In addition, Dahlan organized a series of demonstrations in the West Bank against the Palestinian Authority and Abbas — to which hundreds of Fatah activists showed up. So Abbas, who has taken some hard hits in recent weeks (including for attending the funeral of Shimon Peres, in case anyone forgot), caught on to the conspiracy being wrought against him in Cairo, Abu Dhabi (where Dahlan lives), and even Saudi Arabia (which recently cut back its aid to the PA). So Abbas decided to approach the patrons of the Muslim Brotherhood and perhaps bring about a reconciliation with Hamas — mainly with the leadership of the group’s political wing abroad.
Why approach Hamas leaders in Qatar and not in Gaza?
One reason is that the high-ranking members of Hamas in Gaza seem to be collaborating with Dahlan, of all people. This means that the conventional division into various camps (pragmatic Sunnis, the Muslim Brotherhood, Shiites, jihadist Sunnis) created in recent years is once again melting before our eyes. The new Middle East transformed long ago into a juicy and tragic political-diplomatic soap opera, and we cannot predict where the plot of its next episode is headed.
Yet in the end...nothing happens.

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From Ian:

Palestinians funded UK Labour leader’s 2009 trip to meet Assad
The leader of the UK’s Labour party visited Syria in 2009 on a trip paid for by a Palestinian rights group and met with Syrian President Bashar Assad.
Jeremy Corbyn made the trip along with other members of parliament from all three of Britain’s major political parties, the Daily Mail reported on Saturday.
A far-left politician who in 2009 called Hezbollah and Hamas his “friends” – an expression he recently said for the first time he regretted using – Corbyn has been accused of encouraging vitriolic speech against Israel as well as Jews by befriending anti-Semitic movements and individuals.
The Syria trip seven years ago was funded by the Palestinian Return Centre, which recently organized an event in the House of Lords during which one member of the audience won applause for claiming that Jews were to blame for the Holocaust and comparing Israel to the Islamic State group.
Members’ Register of Interests records showed Corbyn reported the Syria visit as costing £1,300 ($1,500) and that the purpose was “to visit Iraqi and Palestinian refugee camps in Syria.”
The visit was held to mark the anniversary of the Balfour Declaration of 1917, in which the United Kingdom committed to viewing favorably the establishment of a Jewish national home in what would later become the British Mandate on Palestine.
Following his return to Britain, Corbyn told parliament at the time that “I pay tribute to the fact that Syria has accommodated a very large number of refugees and ensured that they are able to live in that country in safety.” (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Trump Threatens to Release Video Proving Obama, Clinton Carried out Harambe Murder (satire)
At his most recent rally in New Hampshire, Donald Trump dropped a bombshell that has the general public scared, confused and shocked.
“Folks, it seems that creating the most violent terrorist organization in the world was not enough for Obama and Crooked Hillary, and nor is the current “reinvestigation” by the FBI into Clinton’s emails. No, something far more nefarious is going on in the Democratic Party,” the Republican nominee told an enraptured crowd of supporters hanging on to his every word. “I have proof from a very not-credible source that they together, Hussein and Crooked, shot and killed Harambe, that poor innocent gorilla. Terrible, just terrible.”
When questioned whether he was implying that government policies indirectly resulted in Harambe’s death, he quickly clarified that he meant they literally shot the Gorilla themselves. “Listen, I saw the video, I saw it, you will see it too (thank you, Assange). It shows Barack Hussein Obama and Hillary setting up an M40 sniper rifle in the meerkat exhibit, lying on either side of the rifle, and pulling the trigger together. The only part of Hillary that isn’t crooked is her shot when killing innocent gorillas. They are really dangerous! Really bad people!”
Republican supporter Nathan Edelpitz commended the republican candidate for bringing out the truth. “We all knew Harambe was an inside job. Finally we have someone courageous enough to tell it like it is.”
When asked to comment on the allegation, Clinton was visibly confused “I’m pretty sure I never left that video on my email server….not that I killed Harambe with a well-placed sniper shot…that would be silly.”
IsraellyCool: Citi Should Follow The Lead Of American Express
Citibank is the largest foreign bank in Israel. It placed its Citibank Innovation Lab in Tel Aviv. It invests so much in Israeli innovation because to quote a Citibank representative himself it was a “no brainer” to use Israeli talents for this purpose.
Roger Waters has campaigned to prevent every single act from appearing in Israel and sometimes succeeds in doing so using classic antisemitic tropes and lies. He considers Hamas a “peaceful” organisation and actively promotes violence against Israelis calling it “legitimate resistance”.
Considering how much Citibank invests in Israel, and considering the hate and violence Waters represents we ask that Citibank follow the lead of American Express and drop their sponsorship of Roger Waters.
I have complete respect for Citi in Israel. They utilize our innovative workforce, I’ve banked with them. Maybe it’s someone in their corporate office who is simply unaware of who Roger Waters is and represents. But we need to get the message out.
I don’t know who put up this petition, but I signed it and so should you.

US calls for end to anti-Israel bias as it regains UN Human Rights Council seat
The United States reclaimed its seat on the United Nations Human Rights Council on Friday and immediately called for a change in its treatment of Israel.
“While important challenges remain, including ending the council’s excessive and biased focus on Israel, we look forward to cooperating with other council members to address human rights concerns, advance human rights around the world, and ensure the Council fully realizes its purpose,” US Secretary of State John Kerry said.
He spoke following a UN General Assembly vote to elect 14 new council members.
The elections are held annually, for three-year terms, and no member state can sit on the council for more than two consecutive terms.
The US ended its six years on the council in 2015. During that time, it was the one consistent vote in support of Israel on the UNHRC, which spends more time condemning the Jewish state than any genuine human rights abusers.
Aside from the US, the following countries will begin serving on the council in 2017: Brazil, Croatia, Egypt, Hungary, Iraq, Japan, Rwanda and Tunisia. Cuba, Saudi Arabia, China, South Africa and Great Britain are already on the council and will be serving second terms.
“The re-election of China, Cuba and Saudi Arabia – regimes which systematically violate the human rights of their citizens – casts a shadow upon the reputation of the United Nations,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer.
New UN Palestine Rapporteur Defends Ties to "Very Mainstream" Palestinian Lobby Groups
Michael Lynk, new UN Special Rapporteur on Palestine, responded to accusations that he lied on his UN application concerning past links and failed to disclose his board membership on three pro-Palestinian lobby groups, Friends of Sabeel, the Canadian-Palestinian Education Exchange (CEPAL), and the National Council on Canada-Arab Relations. Lynk said that the organizations were "entirely mainstream" and "very mainstream." His connection to them was "not long." He said they accepted the international consensus on how to achieve peace, but then asked whether UN Watch did.

Russia kicked out of UN Human Rights Council
In the wake US claims of Russian war crimes in Syria, the United Nations General Assembly voted Russia off the UN Human Rights Council during a general vote this week. The United States was re-elected to its position on the council.
Forty-seven countries participated votes on Russia's continued involvment, with only 2 votes more to kick Russia off than to keep them on. Some participants termed the vote "historic."
This is the first time Russia has not been part of the UNHRC since the council's inception in 2006.
80 different human rights organizations signed a petition asking Russia be removed from UNHRC after Russia's involvement in Syria's civil war caused many to believe Russia is guilty of war crimes.
Vying for a Seat on the UN Human Rights Council, Iraq Touts Jewish Life in the Country, While Hiding the Truth of Persecution, Exile
In a bid to land a seat on the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), the Iraqi government is touting thousands of years of Jewish life in its country, ignoring the destruction of Iraqi Jewry over the course of the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In a brochure posted online, Iraq promoted its human-rights record ahead of the annual election for the 47-seat UNHRC, being held Friday. “Jewish Iraqis have lived in the region for thousands of years, as early as the Sassanians of the Talmudic era,” it boasts.
However, by the end of the 1950s, all but 6,000 of Iraq’s 130,000 Jews, stripped of their citizenship, had fled the country, after Iraq declared that Zionism was a crime punishable by death, and economic and political persecution of Jews had become the norm.
“Iraq’s UNHRC election brochure says, ‘#Jews have lived in Iraq for thousands of years;’ right — but were all chased out decades ago,” tweeted Hillel C. Neuer of UNWatch, an advocacy group highly critical of the diplomatic organization.
“Iraq’s absurd @UN_HRC election campaign brochure also cites the happy condition of their #Christian minority — who have been decimated,” Neuer continued, citing the Iraqis’ statement that Mosul — currently being held by the Islamic State — “has the highest proportion of Christians of all the Iraqi cities.”
Iran's sole Jewish MP: Iran is safer for Jews than France
Some dubbed him "Rouhani's Jew," and before that, "Ahmedinejad's Jew," but Siamak Morsadegh (Moreh Tzadek - righteous teacher in Hebrew), is an impressive, stout man who is much more than this: he's "the number one Jew" in Iran.
He was recently sent to Paris as part of a delegation led by the chairman of the Iranian Parliament's Foreign Policy and National Security Committee, Alaeddin Boroujerdi, who introduced him during his speech to the Diplomatic Academy in Paris as Iran's only Jewish MP, emphasizing how honored he was by his presence.
This is Morsadegh's third term as an Iranian MP, totaling nine years. Last year he was re-elected with 70% of the Jewish population's vote, which he says numbers some 25,000 people. Like other religious groups in Iran, the Jewish community has a reserved seat in parliament.
"As the representatives of the religions, we are not so involved in political life," Morsadegh explained, as we sat in the comfortable lounge chairs of the International Diplomatic Academy. "Our main role is regulating minority life through the government and improving the situation of our coreligionists. Generally, we are in the Center, not Left or Right. As a small community, we are not interested in factions and political disagreements. Religious minorities have different political activity. I was chosen by a heterogeneous political group, and I should have a moderate stance and deal mainly with cultural and social issues. Not as a political representative."
Iranian-Jewish MP: Tehran knows war with Israel would be ‘suicide’
Iran’s sole Jewish parliamentarian said the Islamic Republic is not seeking war with Israel and asserted that Tehran knows that launching an attack on the Jewish state would amount to “suicide.”
“Iran does not want to start a war against Israel, because they know that everyone who starts a war in the Middle East is doing suicide,” Siamak Moreh Sedgh told Israel Radio in an English-language interview aired Sunday morning.
Sedgh said he believed the Iranian leadership to be “healthy and wise enough to avoid a war with Israel.”
“Relations between Iran and Israel [are] more stable than ever before since the signing of the nuclear agreement last year,” he said.
“Two, three years ago I was suspicious about [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu, I think he is crazy enough to start a war, but today, the condition of the world after the agreement is better, and the Middle East is more stable,” Sedgh said.
He added that war was not “probable” at the moment.
Netanyahu to visit 3 states never-before visited by sitting Israeli PM
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced at Sunday's cabinet meeting that within the next three months he will travel to four countries, including three where no sitting Israeli prime minister has ever visited: Australia, Singapore and Kazakhstan.
The fourth country is Azerbaijan, a strategic country on Iran's border. Like Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan is a majority Muslim country. He visited there briefly in 1997 on the way back from a visit to the East, and met in the airport in Baku with late Azerbaijani President Heydar Aliyev, the father of the current president.
Israel purchases most of its oil from Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Starting in January, Kazakhstan will have a seat on the 15-member UN Security Council.
Netanyahu's visit to Singapore will be a reciprocal visit to one that country's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong made to Israel in April, and the trip by an Israeli prime minister to Australia has been discussed for months, in order to demonstrate to Canberra that it's strong, consistent support for Israel is not taken for granted.
Netanyahu did not give the exact dates of his trip. He is also expected to travel to Togo in the Spring for a summit there with the leaders of a number of West African countries.
Marmara families won't drop lawsuits against Israel
Despite the reconciliation deal between Turkey and Israel, the families of the Turkish Islamists who were killed in the 2010 Israeli raid on the Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara ship have vowed to pursue criminal cases against the Jewish state.
Under the agreement between the two countries, Israel earlier this month paid $20 million in compensation to Turkey for the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident in 2010, which led to the suspension of diplomatic ties between the two countries.
The Mavi Marmara incident occurred when IDF soldiers boarded the ship after the Islamists on board, who claimed they were carrying humanitarian aid for Gaza, refused to reverse course and dock at the Ashdod Port.
When they boarded the ship, the soldiers were attacked by the Islamists with clubs and knives, forcing the troops to open fire and killing 10 of those on board.
Upon inspection it was discovered that there was no humanitarian aid whatsoever aboard the Marmara.
Turkey angrily cut off ties with Israel following the incident, but the sides announced a reconciliation agreement this past June after months of talks.
"We have no intention to drop the lawsuits," Cigdem Topcuoglu, whose husband was killed on the Marmara, told the AFP news agency on Friday. "We are certainly not accepting the compensation."
AFP's Error, Editorializing and Omissions
Agence France Presse, an influential news service, ran two articles yesterday which between them contained a factual error, key omissions, and editorializing.
In a factual error, the first sentence of yesterday's article ("Gaza flotilla raid victims' kin vow legal battle against Israel") incorrectly characterized the "Mavi Marmara" as "a Gaza-bound aid ship."
The "Mavi Marmara" was not an “aid ship” at all. As documented in the UN’s Palmer Report (p. 47), it carried 546 passengers but no humanitarian aid supplies for the people of the Gaza Strip:
Israel offers earthquake aid to stricken Italy
Israel is willing and ready to send assistance to Italy in the wake of Sunday's earthquake, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the weekly cabinet meeting, shortly after yet another earthquake hit central Italy.
“I would like to say to my friend, the Prime Minister of Italy, Matteo Renzi, Israel is prepared to send aid to the best of its ability,” Netanyahu said.
The prime minister said that Israel remains in a high level of readiness for these types of disasters, as witnessed by the search and rescue efforts last month following the collapse of a parking lot under construction in Tel Aviv.
Israel, he said, is “ready to help our friends the Italians.
Netanyahu also took the opportunity to welcome Italy's President Sergio Mattarella, who arrived in the country for a four day visit on Saturday night. Netanyahu said that Israel “appreciates the strong and clear statement that we heard from Italy on many issues important to us.”
Italy was one of the 26 countries that abstained in the October 13 UNESCO executive board vote that erased any Jewish connection to Temple Mount.
Likud MK rapped for saying Italy earthquake was divine punishment for UNESCO vote
The Foreign Ministry on Saturday condemned Deputy Minister Ayoub Kara’s remark earlier this week that the earthquake that rattled Italy was divine retribution for UNESCO’s vote on the Temple Mount.
On Wednesday, the same day the UN’s culture body voted for a resolution whitewashing any Jewish connection to the Temple Mount, Kara, a Likud MK who serves as deputy minister for regional cooperation, said during a visit to Vatican that “I am sure that the earthquake happened because of UNESCO’s decision that the pope really didn’t love; and (he) even publicly expressed that the Holy Land belongs to the Jewish people.”
A pair of strong aftershocks shook central Italy late Wednesday, crumbling churches and buildings, knocking out power and sending panicked residents into the rain-drenched streets just two months after a powerful earthquake killed nearly 300 people. But hours after the temblors hit, there were no reports of serious injuries or signs of people trapped in rubble, said the head of Italy’s civil protection agency, Fabrizio Curcio.
Kara’s statement, made days before a state visit by Italian President Sergio Mattarella to Israel, provoked outrage in Italy.
The ministry said in a statement Saturday that Kara’s comments were inappropriate and shouldn’t have been made, and that they are not reflective of the strong ties Israel and Italy share.
Heads To Roll At Mossad After Earthquake Hits Italy Instead Of Ramallah (satire)
Officials at Israel’s intelligence and clandestine operations agency promised a full inquiry today after the device intended to inflict an earthquake on the de facto Palestinian capital city instead hit Rome.
A 6.6-magnitude tremor struck the Italian capital this morning after a technician input faulty data into the Mossad’s earthquake generator. Mossad chief Tamir Pardo called an emergency session of all department heads and odered an immediate halt to all operations involving the device until an investigation determines what allowed such a mishap to occur. Even before the first reported casualties from the quake emerged Sunday morning, Pardo convened all department heads and deputies to the session to coordinate the investigation and implement whatever measures may be necessary to prevent a recurrence, including possible disciplinary action against, or dsimissal of, anyone proven negligent in the fiasco.
Operation Re’ida was intended to sow further instability in Palestinian-administered territories by crippling Ramallah’s infrastructure and preoccupying the city’s rescue and maintenance workers for weeks, if not months, while Israel then moved to consolidate its hold on the area. According to preliminary indicators, however, a technician operating the earthquake device, which carries the code name Korach, mistakenly allowed the software to autocomplete the initial “R” of “Ramallah” to read “Rome,” and the machine proceeded to affect the tectonic movements on the Italian peninsula instead of the Judean Mountains. As a result, at least eighteen current Mossad operations have been suspended as the agency reviews its oversight procedures and revamps them.
“There should have been another layer of review before the go-ahead was given to the machine,” explained a department head who spoke on condition of anonymity. “That safety mechanism itself was put in place after a previous mess-up, when a landslide hit the Pacific Northwest of the US instead of China back in 2014. There’s going to be hell to pay if this is the same problem.” A landslide in April of that year killed 18 people and injured many more, and prompted a rare apology from the International Zionist Conspiracy to the people of Washington State.
3 Border Police lightly hurt in apparent West Bank car-ramming
Three Border Police officers were lightly injured Sunday afternoon in an apparent car-ramming attack in the West Bank.
The incident occurred on Route 60 near Beit Ummar, north of Hebron.
The driver of the vehicle was shot dead by security forces at the scene. The Palestinian health ministry identified him as Khaled Ahmad Aylan, 23 years old, of Beit Ummar.
The policemen were taken to Jerusalem’s Shaarei Tzedek Hospital for treatment. They suffered injuries to the lower extremities.
Also Sunday, an Israeli child was injured in the same area when a number of Palestinians threw rocks at cars along the highway. The rocks hit two vehicles, according to the IDF, including the one near the settlement of Ma’ale Amos in which the five-year-old boy was travelling. A rock shattered one of the windows, lightly wounding the child. He was taken to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem for treatment.
Forces in the vicinity launched a searched for the perpetrators following the attack. An IDF spokesman said the search was ongoing.
Israel sentences 3 Palestinians for 2015 terror plot
The Nazareth District Court sentenced on Sunday three Palestinians for conspiracy to carry out a terror attack in December 2015 in the northern town of Afula. Through a plea bargain, two minors were sentenced to 25 months in prison, and one legal adult will serve 28 months in prison.
The case was under a gag order until now, but according to the official sentencing decision, the defendants witnessed friction between Israeli soldiers and a Muslim woman on December 8, 2015 in Jerusalem.
According to the sentencing, this event angered them to the point that they sought to murder Jewish people in revenge.
One of the minor defendants bought three knives from a store in Umm el-Fahm, and they hid them in their clothes and boarded a bus to Afula in December 2015. Some civilians thought they looked suspicious and called police, who arrested the defendants upon investigation.
Tensions rising between Palestinian Authority and refugee camp residents
Clashes between the Palestinian Authority security forces and residents of the Balata refugee camp broke out for the third time in ten days early Saturday morning, highlighting growing tensions between the PA and the Balata refugee camp.
“PA security forces entered Balata at 2:30AM to carry out arrests, but immediately met resistance from armed residents,” a local leader in Balata told The Jerusalem Post. “Both sides exchanged fire until the security forces withdrew four hours later.”
The clashes left two residents and one PA security force injured.
After the PA security forces left the camp, Palestinian social media showed hundreds of Balata residents gathered to protest the security forces’ entry to Balata, yelling chants against Nidal Abu Dukhan, the head of the PA’s National Security Forces. “Abu Dukhan, you spy…we want to step all over your head,” the residents chanted.
Some younger Balata residents then marched to Jerusalem street, adjacent to Balata, blocking traffic and throwing burning tires into the middle of the street.
Dana Bergen of Jewish Voice for Peace: A personal vendetta against the truth.
On October 26, San Francisco for Democracy sponsored a debate on BDS. Dana Bergen, a board member of Jewish Voice for Peace advocated in favor of boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel. Community educator, Dr. Michael Harris argued against it.
The debate was filmed, and clips will be released shortly.
Unfortunately, the format of the debate allowed a shocking free flow of abject lies from Dana Berger to go unchecked.
Until now.
During the debate, Dana Bergen stated
"About Gaza. Gaza has been under siege for many years now. Israeli is strangling Gaza. Gaza is not occupying Gaza in the sense that they are inside Gaza but they are controlling the perimeter of Gaza. They decide how much food goes into Gaza. Gaza has been obliterated by massive bombardment twice in recent years. They don't allow building supplies back in Gaza so there is just rubble. They have calculated how many calories they should allow into Gaza so that people are hungry but don't die because they are trying to torment the population. that is what they are trying to do."
Lies. Complete lies.
Another anti-Israel academic boycott professor who plays victim
Saree Makdisi, professor of English and comparative literature at UCLA, has endorsed and is a vocal advocate for the academic and cultural boycott of Israel, as demanded by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
The American Association of University Professors considers systematic academic boycotts, such as the BDS academic boycott of Israel, to be a violation of academic freedom and a threat to the free exchange of ideas necessary for academic and scientific progress. Over 250 university presidents and large university associations have condemned the BDS academic boycott for these reasons.
Which means Makdisi wants to violate the academic freedom not only of Israelis, but of those who want to deal with Israelis. If the academic boycott Makdisi supports succeeded, breakthrough cancer research conducted by and with Israeli universities would have to be boycotted.
How many people must die so that Makdisi and his fellow boycotters can fulfill some emotional need to bash Israeli universities and faculty? I asked that question of Marc Lamont Hill, another professor who supports the academic boycott, but never got an answer, Question for @MarcLamontHill – How many must die for academic boycott of Israel?
The tactics used to implement the academic boycott are crude, including shout downs and obstructions of Israeli and pro-Israeli speakers on campuses.
Fight against BDS in European, US schools to get $13M boost
Israel's national program to fight the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement is slated to receive an additional budget of 50 million shekels ($13 million), Israel Hayom learned over the weekend.
Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan and the Jewish Agency head the program, which focuses, among other thing, on countering BDS activities on U.S. and European university campuses.
"The program aims to undermine the BDS movement's activities on campuses, while simultaneously bolstering Jewish students," a source involved with the program said.
The program includes a plan to better prepare Jewish students to deal with BDS activities on campuses, including anti-Semitism and anti-Zionist claims, as well as provide them with the tools to counter the allegations the BDS movement makes against Israel.
Erdan and the Jewish Agency plan to increase the number of Jewish Agency emissaries on campuses by 20% in 2017 and by a further 20% in 2018.
International Lawyers Petition World Soccer Federation to Investigate Palestinian Association for ‘Egregious’ Statute Violations
International lawyers are calling on the world soccer organization to investigate “egregious” violations by the Palestinian Football Association (PFA).
In a letter to the chair of the FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) Monitoring Committee for Israel and Palestine, the Lawfare Project — a nonprofit legal organization — and a host of international lawyers brought attention to the PFA’s violations of the FIFA statutes.
“If FIFA officials plan to take action against the Israeli clubs in disputed territories, they must also be prepared to acknowledge and punish the Palestinian Football Association for these brazen violations of FIFA codes,” the letter stated. “FIFA must protect itself and all institutions of international sport from being politicized and dishonored in Palestinian attempts to ostracize the Jewish state.”
The FIFA violations cited include: the PFA punishing Palestinians who participate in soccer games with Israelis; PFA officials regularly denigrating Israel and Israelis; the promotion and glorification of terrorism by Palestinian soccer clubs; and the use of the PFA to promote a political agenda and to politicize FIFA.
Former UK Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks Says Only Time During Tenure He Felt ‘Genuinely Afraid’ as a Jew Was Lecturing at Oxford
The former chief rabbi of the UK said the only time during his tenure when he felt “genuinely afraid” was when he gave a talk at Oxford, the Jewish Chronicle reported on Friday.
Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks recounted this during a cross-party debate at the House of Lords Thursday on the recently released House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee (HASC) report on antisemitism.
“Just before the start of my lecture, a whole group of rather menacing Muslim students came in and occupied the center of the front row. It was blatant attempt at intimidation,” he said, arguing for “zero tolerance for intimidation of any group of students,” in the face of increasing expressions of the phenomenon at UK institutions of higher learning.
Among others participating in the debate was Baroness Ruth Deech. Saying that universities have turned into “hotbeds of anti-Jewish incidents,” Deech criticized the “weakness” of previous governmental inquiries into the phenomenon — such as those investigating Oxford University and the Labour Party — for “includ[ing] racism and Islamophobia, thereby sidelining antisemitism and its special characteristics, and failing to deal with the tricky issue of when hatred of Israel become antisemitism.”
Hack in a Flak Jacket
Hack in the Flak Jacket is a story about parachute journalism although the author doesn’t use that term. Not surprising really. Wikipedia defines the term as the practice of thrusting journalists into an area to report on a story in which the reporter has little knowledge or experience. The lack of knowledge and tight deadlines often result in inaccurate or distorted news reports, especially during breaking news. If, as this case, the journo is based in London and takes his knowledge from the BBC he will probably be not just uninformed but misinformed on Israel.
There is an additional element to that definition. Let the story go to blazes. If a more ‘important’ story arises or the conditions become really dangerous the parachute journalist is out of there faster than Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible.
As the parachutist knows little about the region, the culture or the conflict; nothing about the locality; doesn’t know anyone and doesn’t speak the language or languages, as Stefanovic acknowledges, he requires a fixer. ‘Without them you are useless’.
What he doesn’t acknowledge is the vital quality without which the Gazan fixer would be useless to him. He or she must be in good standing with Hamas.
Hamas media instructions
… and there’s the rub. The real job of the fixer is to show foreign journalists what Hamas wants them to see and avoid what Hamas doesn’t want; arrange interviews with those who will say what Hamas wants the journalist to hear or to mistranslate in the event that person goes off script and avoid anything that departs from the narrative.
They needn’t necessarily be members or even supporters of Hamas. Perhaps that is even an advantage as it makes them look more credible. They know that when the journalist offends and leaves they stay and Hamas knows where they live. That is more than enough to keep them in line.
During the 2014 war Israeli troops captured a wealth of Hamas intelligence material including their directions to journalists. This confirmed what those following the reporting from Gaza had always suspected. Journalists were not to show rockets launching or even the sites they had been launched from or Hamas fighters, either in action, wounded or killed. However they were to show injured civilians especially children, always to be described as innocent victims, never referring to Hamas policy of human shields.
Honest Reporting: Muddling the Mayhem of a Palestinian Protest
Two Papers Blew It
While the Daily Telegraph, Times of London, LBC, Daily Mail, and the Jewish News responsibly reported the story, two papers botched their coverage.
First, The Independent, in which a misleading headline and statement in the reporter’s voice say pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian students “clashed,” implying that both sides were equally responsible — a distortion of facts.
In a separate report, the Evening Standard refers to the “IOF” in the reporter’s voice. It stands for “Israel Occupation Forces,” an abusive term used by Israel-bashers. I presume this reference was used by one of the protesters interviewed by the Standard, in which case “IOF” should have been put in quotation marks. So either the Evening Standard is guilty of gross ignorance (at best, misleading terminology), or even worse, offering a blatant opinion disguised as news.
German guesthouse turns away Israelis: 'Our apartments are not for them'
A group of Israeli tourists looking for board while planning a trip to Germany next summer were shocked after a guesthouse in the southwestern region of Bavaria last week urged them to cancel their reservation due to their nationality.
While planning a vacation for next August, the four Israeli families reserved lodging at the Mattenhof guesthouse in the Black Forest town of Zell am Harmersbach, explained one of the party's members, Igor Tsehansky.
However, shortly after confirming the reservation, the administrators of the guesthouse contacted the Israelis with a slew of messages and notified them that they should cancel the booking.
Tsehansky said that he and his friends received the German-language notice less than week after making the arrangements.
"We don't Want have Guests from Israel, because our apartments are Not for them [sic]. Please cancel the Booking," read a Google translated message that Tsehansky posted to Facebook.
IsraellyCool: Is There An Occupation?
In order to believe Israel is occupying “Palestinian land” you have to believe there is such a thing as “Palestinian land”.
You have to believe there is a Palestinian Arab nation which is a distinct people with its own history which has existed for centuries.
You have to believe Palestinian culture exists without any recorded archaeological evidence, works of literature, music, distinct foods, linguistic connections to the land, religious observances tied directly to the land and a host of other problems with their claims to be Indigenous.
To believe in an Israeli occupation of “Palestinian land” you have to believe the same, insane, UNESCO/Palestinian “history” or “narrative” as the one which says the Jewish Temple Mount is not sacred to Jews. Narrative is just a fancy word meaning “made up stuff”.
You have to believe this Palestinian people have a distinct culture that is “Palestinian” and separate from wider Arab culture, different from Arabs in Jordan or Syria or Sinai or any of the other parts of the Arab world. Despite the fact even the name they adopted for themselves is not Arabic in origin and begins with a letter not even in their alphabet.
And because this “Palestinian narrative” is so obviously an identity theft of the impregnably strong Jewish indigenous identity, you have to also disbelieve all evidence of Jewish history in the Holy Land. You also have to negate Christian ties to Israel, by the way.
Ancient Muslim inscription proves Jewish ties to Temple Mount
A 1,000-year-old early Muslim inscription provides yet more crucial proof of Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and Jerusalem.
At a conference on Thursday, archaeologists Assaf Avraham and Perez Reuven presented an ancient Muslim inscription that refers to the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount as "Bait al-Maqdess," an Arabicized version of the Hebrew words for the Temple, Beit Hamikdash.
The inscription was discovered at a recently excavated central mosque in the village of Nuba near Hebron.
The conference also presented other sources from the early Muslim period referring to the Dome of the Rock as "al-Maqdess." These findings demonstrate how Jewish tradition influenced the religious worldview of nascent Islam in the seventh century.
"At the start of the Muslim period, religious rites were held inside the Dome of the Rock compound that imitated the ceremonies conducted in the Jewish Temple," Avraham said at the conference.
"The people who conducted those ceremonies would purify themselves, change their clothes, burn incense, anoint the rock with oil, place curtains around the Foundation Stone, just like the ornamental curtain that existed in the [Jewish] Temple.

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