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Sunday, September 30, 2018

From Ian:

Jpost Editorial: Wake up Europe
Appeasement might be a tough word and one that Netanyahu uses reluctantly, but he is right. Europe has turned a blind eye to what is happening in Iran and Lebanon for far too long. Sadly, it is unlikely that anything will really change due to Netanyahu’s speech, no matter how good it might have been.

Over a period of decades, Europe has shown that it prefers short-term quiet over confronting challenges and threats that present it and the rest of the world with long-lasting problems. The continent operates like a tactician as opposed to a strategist.

This is evident in the European Union’s continued support of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action the P5+1 reached with Iran in an effort to stop the Islamic Republic’s pursuit of nuclear weapons. While the EU might be right that the deal is working today, it will eventually expire and place Iran on the brink of nuclear weapons. And while it is true that Lebanon is today quiet, that will also change the moment Hezbollah decides to unleash a missile onslaught on the State of Israel.

Europe though doesn’t seem to care. While it knows all of this, it prefers not to take steps that could lead to an escalation, diplomatically or militarily. It sits quietly, enjoying the temporary quiet, no matter how much of an illusion it might be.

The problem is that Iran’s nuclear program is still a problem for the world. The same with Hezbollah. Neither are sitting quietly. Hezbollah has amassed an unprecedented missile arsenal that puts many countries to shame and Iran is simply playing the waiting game and will likely one day breakout toward a bomb when it assesses that the price it will pay will be the lowest.

Netanyahu explained that Israel does not need a wake-up call like Europe.

“Despite the best of hope, and there were many hopes around the nuclear deal, this deal did not push war further away. It brought war ever closer to our borders,” he said.

We hope that Netanyahu’s speech will serve as the wake-up Europe desperately needs. The time to act against Iran is now. A first step would be for the International Atomic Energy Agency to immediately visit the atomic warehouse and for Europe to take real steps that will bring change. Appeasement will fail.
The ground is burning
Israel developed a partial solution to the rocket problem and, with the help of the Iron Dome system, it has been able to mitigate the threats. Yet we've also been attacked with longer-range rockets and deeper underground tunnels. In a practical sense, the situation hasn't fundamentally changed over the past decade. The Gaza-area communities continue to suffer from Hamas belligerence and the south remains exceedingly unstable. On the diplomatic level, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi certainly helps narrow the scope of Hamas' initiatives, particularly by controlling the Philadelphi Route along their shared border and the Rafah crossing area, where Hamas' smuggling capabilities have dwindled. Again, though, taking a broader view, this hasn't dramatically changed the situation in the south.

Thus, since March, the IDF has used varying degrees of force to counter Hamas' ploys – whether these include protests, roadside bombs, and occasionally a 24-48 hour escalation consisting of rocket fire at Israeli civilians. Hamas has tried forcing Israel into another tahdiya although it appears this effort isn't bearing fruit. We can, therefore, expect another escalation in the near future and we will again have to ask: What's going to change?

The answer isn't surprising: Nothing will change unless this time Israel undertakes a massive operation to finally alter the situation on a fundamental level. Hamas needs to understand that the next confrontation will be its last. It will not provide hope. And Israel, for its part, needs to be ready to finish the job it left undone 10 years ago. The IDF is certainly ready and capable of this mission; the question is whether the will exists.

A compressive, far-reaching operation would unfold in several stages. The first will aim at isolating high-threat areas and cutting off escape routes for Hamas terrorists. The second will require a massive ground operation in these areas, including in Gaza City, Khan Younis and Rafah, and destroying the terror nests there. These two steps will require several weeks to complete and they won't be simple. Afterward will come the stabilizing phase, aimed at fully clearing the area of terrorists and their infrastructure and installing systems of governance and intelligence-gathering on the ground. This phase in its entirety should require no more than one year, but it will undoubtedly change the situation fundamentally. Ultimately, Israel will give itself a different array of capabilities to cope with any development, and it will be the one dictating the rules of the game, which is totally opposite the current situation of being captive to Hamas' whims.
'Madrid is encouraging violence against Israel'
Israel protested to the mayor of Madrid about the festive visit she organized for terrorist Ahed Tamimi, who was convicted of incitement against security forces and attacking IDF soldiers, for which she served eight months in prison.

Tamimi was accompanied by her family at the invitation of the city leaders and the Real Madrid soccer club at the stadium of the Spanish team, Bernabeu.

Real Madrid did not make do with a special tour played by former soccer star Emilio Butragueno, but also prepared a jersey with her name printed on it.

Daniel Kutner, the Israeli ambassador to Spain, sent a letter of protest to Mayor Manuela Carmena. "The move by the Madrid municipality encourages violence against Israeli civilians and undermines any attempt to create a genuine dialogue between Israel and the Palestinians," Kutner wrote.

Kutner added, "Ahed Tamimi is not an innocent fighter for peace, but an instigator of violence and terror. Any institution that welcomes her indirectly promotes violence and aggression instead of promoting dialogue and understanding."

Abbas is using Hamas against Israel
Israel could be well served by holding talks with the Palestinian Authority, but it would be best if this point is reached only after things are sorted out in Gaza. A Gaza deal was within reach about a month ago, but it turns out that the Palestinians can't quite close it. They are worse than the British government trying to figure out Brexit. Both the Palestinians and the British like gridlocks, and both have made Israeli lives miserable over the years.

But Israel's Gaza approach is not very rational either. For humanitarian reasons, Israel has yet to take the steps necessary to reach a deal that would have strategic implications. Some cabinet members believe that letting Gaza operate a port in Cyprus under Israeli supervision would be a worthwhile concession that would facilitate a long-term modus vivendi with Hamas. Limited regional deals are much more viable than the big peace deals.

"We believe that the Palestinians are going to have come to the table. President Abbas is not helping the Palestinian people at all. He hasn’t acknowledged Hamas," Haley said over the weekend, while meeting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. She added that Abbas is using Hamas against Israel.

Netanyahu then thanked Haley, who is probably the most popular woman in Israel, for "clearing the air out" in the United Nations, although it will take time to get rid of the anti-Israel stench there, as Netanyahu said in his U.N. General Assembly speech.

The Palestinians, who are renewing their war against Israel through other means, are being used as cannon fodder by the Europeans and the United Nations.
Hamas says Abbas is pushing Israel to launch a new war in Gaza
A senior Hamas official on Sunday accused Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas of fomenting violence in the region and pushing Israel toward a new war in the Gaza Strip.

“Abbas wants to control everything in Gaza, war is good for him,” Mahmoud al-Zahar, a senior leader in the Gaza Strip, told Arab media. Al-Zahar is in Cairo as part of a large delegation from Gaza taking part in talks to reach a Palestinian reconciliation deal and a possible long-term truce with Israel.

The talks have been deadlocked in recent months and Hamas blames Abbas who has imposed a series of crippling sanctions on the Strip in a bid to force Hamas to give up control. The terror group has ruled Gaza since it ousted Abbas’s rival Fatah faction in 2007.

Al-Zahar charged that the PA, together with several unnamed Arab states, were trying to persuade Israel to launch a wide-scale campaign in Gaza.

Recent days have seen a fresh upsurge in violence and al-Zahar said the border violence would not subside until they achieved their goals.

“The Marches of Return will not end, no matter how much pressure they put on us,” he said.
Amid spiraling Gaza violence, Bennett lashes government’s ‘failed policy’
Israeli ministers exchanged barbs over the weekend over the escalating violence on the Gaza border, with Education Minister Naftali Bennett slamming the government’s policy on Gaza, saying it was insufficiently aggressive toward the Hamas terrorist group.

In a Sunday statement, Bennett, the chairman of the Jewish Home party blamed Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman for the continuing violence. Liberman’s coalition Yisrael Beytenu party swiftly responded by mocking Bennett’s “hysteria” and “jealousy.”

“The current situation is a direct result of Liberman’s policies toward the Strip,” said Bennett in a statement carried by Hebrew media. “Under the cover of ‘pragmatism’ and ‘responsibility,’ Liberman has subjected the residents of the south to the whims of Hamas. It’s time to tell the truth. The Liberman-Hamas agreements have collapsed. This isn’t how you manage a defense policy; this is what a failed policy looks like.”

Tens of thousands of Palestinians protested along the Gaza border fence, throwing hand grenades, bombs, rocks, and burning tires in weekend clashes with IDF troops, who responded with tear gas, live fire, and airstrikes. The IDF said Saturday that the previous day’s protests were the worst in two months. Over 100 improvised bombs and grenades were hurled at Israeli troops during the riots, according to the army. The army released footage of the violent demonstrations, showing attempts to breach and sabotage the security fence.

Seven Palestinians were killed, including a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old, and at least 210 Palestinians were wounded, including an 11-year-old boy, who was in serious condition, according to the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry. It said 90 of the wounded were hit by live fire.

The protest followed the breakdown of indirect talks with Israel over a ceasefire and warnings that the terror group Hamas, which rules Gaza, was gearing up for another conflict.
Incendiary balloons from Gaza spark two fires in south
Firefighters on Sunday worked to extinguish two blazes in southern Israel sparked by airborne incendiary devices launched from the Gaza Strip and police sappers defused another fire balloon on a highway, as a weekend of violent border clashes was followed by relative quiet.

Since Sunday morning, firefighters have combated two fires caused by incendiary balloons near Israeli towns along the Gaza Strip, a spokesman for the Israeli Fire and Rescue Services said.

A police statement earlier on Sunday said sappers located and neutralized an arson balloon on Highway 35, which caused no damage.

The spate of arson attempts came after over 100 improvised bombs and grenades were hurled at Israeli troops during Friday’s riots at the Gaza border, the military said Saturday. The army released footage of the violent demonstrations, which it said were the worst in two months, depicting attempts to breach and sabotage the security fence.

It also said IDF forces were still engaged in the controlled detonation of unexploded bombs and grenades.
20K Violent Rioters Swarm Gaza Border Fence

Explosive Devices Left on Gaza Border Fence After Hamas-led Riots

Banal BBC News report from the Gaza Strip fails to inform
Viewers of the filmed report saw context-free statements from one female interviewee – who was only identified late in the report using the epithet ‘Um Mustafa’ and is apparently the same person who appeared in a radio report by Yolande Knell in August – alongside equally uninformative BBC commentary.

Woman: “Our children suffer to get a bottle of water. The mains water isn’t drinkable. If we don’t have money, they take containers to a communal water supply.”

BBC: “Nidal and Mohammed live with their mother and siblings in Khan Younis refugee camp. At home, their family also suffers from power shortages.

Woman: “The electricity problem means that in every 24 hours we get only three or four hours. When we get electricity we plug in our mobile phones, the water pump and charge the battery so we can use it for lights when the power is cut.”

BBC: “Medicine shortages in Gaza hospitals are another problem. Khaled needs kidney dialysis four times a week. His drugs cost $80 a month.”

Woman: “My hope for the future? We only have faith in God. We don’t have hope from the government or expect anything positive from anyone.”

BBC: “Khan Younis has seen some of the deadliest protests on the border with Israel. When Palestinian militants fired rockets at Israel there were also Israeli air strikes. Um Mustafa, a widow, worries for all her six children.”

Woman: “I hope that when my son goes out to university he comes back safe and isn’t shot by a stray bullet or hot by a rocket fired at an area he’s in or by shelling. I hope we get stability and live in safety.”

As we see, viewers of this report get an entirely context-free portrayal of water, power and medicines shortages in the Gaza Strip. They are not informed that all three of those issues are linked to the infighting between the terror organisation Hamas and the Palestinian Authority.

The BBC cannot possibly claim that this report meets its remit of providing audiences with “accurate and impartial news, current affairs and factual programming of the highest editorial standards” in order to “help people understand” this particular issue.
The Jordanian Option - the only realistic solution
President Trump walked back his remark that he supports a two-state solution to he supports whatever the parties want. But that isn’t an improvement. For 30 years the parties have not been able to reach an agreement based on what they want.

President Obama tried to remedy that situation by imposing a solution on Israel, to no avail.

Since taking office, Trump has taken a different approach. He is seeking an agreement that ignores the PA, which he is currently destroying, and instead speaks directly to the Palestinian Arabs, who he believes are interested in a better life rather than in destroying Israel.

In addition, he has recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and has proceeded to unravel UNRWA, thereby taking two final status issues off the table

Plus, he and his Ambassador to the UN, Nikky Haley, have relentlessly attacked the UN and its agencies for their bias against Israel. Also, he has withdrawn America from both UNHCR and UNESCO.

Finally, inline with his rejection of multilateralism, he is ignoring the Quartet and the UN and going it alone to achieve a deal not bound by the dogmas of the past, but on the possibilities.
IDF Unveils Photos of Secret Hezbollah Missile Facilities in Lebanon, Near Beirut Airport
The Israel Defense Forces released ‎images on Thursday of Hezbollah facilities in the heart of ‎Lebanon’s capital, saying they proved the Shi’ite terrorist group ‎is trying to build weapon-production sites near the ‎Lebanese capital’s airport. ‎

This development occurred shortly after Israeli Prime ‎Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said to the UN General ‎Assembly that Israel had evidence Iran was ‎assisting Hezbollah with improving its missiles through ‎precision guidance systems.‎

“In Lebanon, Iran is directing Hezbollah to build ‎secret sites to convert inaccurate projectiles into ‎precision-guided missiles—missiles that can target ‎deep inside Israel within an accuracy of 10 meters ‎‎[30 feet],” he said.‎

The deployment of the facilities near Beirut-Rafic Hariri ‎International Airport was “knowingly jeopardizing ‎the Lebanese civilian population,” according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit.‎
We won't let Hamas use UN funds for terrorism, envoy pledges
U.N. Middle East envoy Nickolay Mladenov pledged over the ‎weekend to prevent Hamas, the terrorist ‎group that rules the Gaza Strip, from using United ‎Nations funds and facilities for terror purposes. ‎

Mladenov's remarks followed an appeal by Public ‎Security Minister Gilad Erdan, which detailed how ‎Hamas "is educating and training children in Gaza to ‎carry out terrorist attack by turning terrorists ‎into role models."

"Unfortunately, it seems that U.N. agencies ‎subscribe to Hamas' narrative," Erdan wrote in a letter to the ‎U.N. envoy. ‎

In the letter, the Israeli minister asked Mladenov ‎to denounce Hamas' ‎‎"terrorism summer camps" in Gaza, saying that "it is ‎imperative that the United Nations ensure that ‎neither its funds nor its facilities are used to ‎trample on children's rights in any way."‎

‎"If the U.N. wants to protect the children in Gaza," Erdan wrote, "‎it must first and foremost protect them from Hamas."

The U.N. took nearly a month to respond to the ‎appeal.‎

‎"U.N. offices and organizations operating in the ‎Gaza Strip share your concern that children should ‎not be exposed to violence," Mladenov ‎noted in his ‎reply.‎

‎"‎The U.N. takes precautions to ensure that no U.N. ‎infrastructure or funding is somehow linked to such ‎actions." ‎ ‎
IsraellyCool: Latest Blood Libel: Evidence? They’ve Got Nada Edition
Last week, a number of anti-Israel Facebook pages shared the story of Nada Ibdah, an Arab teenager who was the victim of a hit-and-run accident in Haifa last year. Here is one example.

  • The claim the incident did not get media attention
  • The reference to the driver as a “settler” and Haifa as “occupied”, even though Haifa is within Israel proper and not the so-called “occupied territories.”
  • The accusation the hit-and-run was deliberate, part of a “Zionist project” to displace and expel “Palestinian residents” of the city (even though the victim was an Israeli-Arab)
The claim the incident did not get media attention, is an outright lie. Here are just some examples of the death being reported in the Israeli media: Ynet, Walla, Maariv, Israel Hayom, Channel 10, The Times of Israel.

As for the ridiculous accusation, the driver was arrested following intense efforts of technical investigators and road accident investigators, as well as technology. Furthermore, even Nada’s family did not accuse Israel of some genocidal campaign (translation from same report).

“This is not the first time such an accident has occurred on this road,” said the girl’s uncle, Khalil Khatib, and called on the municipality to intervene. “It’s a difficult and unfortunate case that someone decides to take a life and escape, and if he had stopped and offered help, maybe we would have been somewhere else.

Following the tragic accident, the Haifa municipality installed traffic lights at the crossing Nada was killed.

Yet another example of how the haters are so shameless, continually lying in order to drum up support for their farce of a morally bankrupt cause.
Hamas: Gaza is free of the Israeli 'occupation'
A senior Hamas official claimed that Gaza freed itself of the "Israeli occupation" in 2005.

Speaking on Friday at one of the violent Gaza border riots, Ahmad Bahar said the Al-Aqsa Intifada (also known as the Second Intifada - ed.) which began in September 2000 brought about the "redemption of Gaza and the removal of the Israeli occupation."

He added that the Oslo Accords strengthened the Jewish settlement in and the Judaization of Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem.

Last week, another Hamas official, Khalil al-Hayya, said that the violent Gaza riots would continue until Israel ceased its "occupation" of Gaza.

Promising that the "Palestinian struggle" would continue and that he would protect the PA Arabs' rights and beliefs, Bahar called to escalate the intifada, and to develop additional ways of removing the "occupation." He also praised the illegal Bedouin settlers of Khan al-Ahmar.

Khan al-Ahmar, built illegally on land belonging to a Jewish town, is slated for demolition. Its residents have been asked to evacuate by October 1. The Palestinian Authority (PA) has called for all PA Arabs to arrive en masse and oppose the demolition.
Iran shows footage of close encounter with US carrier
Iran’s state TV on Saturday broadcast footage purporting to show a close encounter between the Revolutionary Guard’s navy and the USS Theodore Roosevelt early this year, The Associated Press reported.

The footage, which aired on the Iranian PressTV, reportedly shows an encounter which occurred March 21 in the strategic Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf.

In the video, Guard speedboats are seen closing in on the US carrier. Iranian sailors then warn the Americans over radio communication to “keep well clear” of the Guard patrol boats and say they advise the Americans to “refrain from the threat or use of force in any manner.”

It is believed the footage could be meant as a show of strength amid new US sanctions on Iran and the Trump administration plans to bring Iranian oil exports down to zero.
Democrats open the door to Congress for Hamas
Campa-Najjar has recounted the alleged suffering he went through in Gaza from age 9 to 13 when he lived there with his parents, how Apache helicopters from the United States supposedly caused killing of his brethren. Then he would have listeners believe he suffered at the hands of Israel and U.S. “I didn’t shed a tear for the 3,000 victims on 9/11,” he says.

These statements were not readily available to the average voter back in San Diego, but were viewable only on Arab websites.

In order for there to be peace he says both sides must make “hard choices” and implies equal culpability for the dispute between the Israelis and Palestinians. He says he doesn’t condone what his grandfather did but he wants to promote peace. During just the last two weeks since this article was written, over 200 rockets were fired into Israel schools, homes and day care centers and innumerable fires were start with drones sent aloft by Gazans like the al Najjars. One would expect Najjar to verbally oppose such activities as they are happening but he doesn’t criticize them at all, instead invoking false equivalency with an imaginary “occupation.”

If he gets into Congress, Ammar Campa-Najjar can get on committees where US National security is at stake.

The worst threat is his appearance in Clifton, New Jersey. When he appeared there before a Palestinian social club, he asked them for campaign money - and was given funds. Why is a resident in San Diego’s 50th congressional district soliciting donation in Clifton, New Jersey? The answer is lso available on Arab websites. Clifton has a sizeable Palestinian community. In fact one street in the city is named Hamas street.

Ammar met at the Center of the Palestinian Community with a number of members of the Council of the Center and some activists from the Arab community in Clifton, like CAIR (Congress has already declared CAIR a Hamas front group)and Clifton Arabs for America. He explained his programs and interests in the topics of medical care for all, and calling for the establishment of infrastructure projects and programs of clean energy, social bromides that appeal to Democratic voters who aren’t aware of the sources for terrorism.

As for the chances of his success in reaching the US Congress, Ammar said that although the region he ran for is dominated by the Republicans, his chances are great and reflected in his campaign for the first place in fundraising, ahead of his Republican rival, as reflected in the number of institutions and institutions which it officially supports.

Then comes the kicker: “As for the role of the community center in his support,” he said, "If you are unable to work in the campaign as a result of the distance (New Jersey to San Diego), I am the one who hopes to serve you when you win." This gathered the attendees on the need to support young Ammar and work to support his campaign financially through his website. They dub him the “handsome Boy” but what he really is, is the “Handsome pro-Hamas boy”.

Voters need to keep him out of Congress for the sake of national security.
Florida Lieutenant Governor Candidate Blasted for College Comment to Jewish Students
The Democratic candidate for Florida lieutenant governor, Chris King, claimed that he lost his campaign to be president of Harvard University’s undergraduate council, part of the student government election, because he was “nailed to the cross” by the Jewish-majority student newspaper.

King, an evangelical Christian, lost in 1999 after the Harvard Crimson decided not to endorse him, remarking his ticket’s “ties to religious groups have raised concerns among students.”

“I was nailed to the cross,” King told the Newhouse News Service. “And most of the editorial staff that was so hard on me, the vast majority were Jewish.”

King apologized after his comments were initially detected in June by Orlando Rising, a progressive website. “This quote from when I was 20 years old is completely at odds with my beliefs,” the candidate said in a statement. “It was a hurtful and stupid comment, and I apologize.”

King is running alongside Democratic gubernatorial candidate and Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum against Republican opponent Ron DeSantis.
Virulently anti-Semitic Malaysian PM welcomed in UK
Malaysia’s avowedly anti-Semitic Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad arrived in London early Sunday morning for the second leg of an international visit, following his trip to New York for the United Nations General Assembly.

Last week, Mohamad delivered a speech entitled “Challenges of Good Governance in the Muslim World” at Oxford University’s Centre for Islamic Studies. He also visited Imperial College London, where he met billionaire inventor Sir James Dyson.

The Daily Mail reported that at no point was the Malaysian premier challenged over his virulently anti-Semitic views and statements.

On Monday, he is to deliver a speech on “Future Democracy in Asia” at the prestigious think tank Chatham House.

A spokesman for the organization denied that hosting Mohamad signaled support for his views.

“Chatham House provides a neutral convening environment. Attendance of a speaker does not imply endorsement,” he said.
Police question UK Labour MP who insulted Israel envoy
A lawmaker for Britain’s Labour Party was questioned by police after he called Israel’s ambassador to the United Kingdom a “tosser,” the Daily Mail reported Sunday.

The incident occurred last week at a Labour Friends of Israel event held during the annual party conference in Liverpool, attended by Ambassador Mark Regev.

Graham Jones, who is MP for Hyndburn and a vocal critic of party leader Jeremy Corbyn, was overheard muttering the word “tosser,” a mild British insult, by one of Corbyn’s aides. Ironically, the aide only referred the incident to police because she thought Jones was directing his insult at her, rather than Regev, the Mail reported.

The aide and Jones were seen arguing, the paper reported, before police intervened.

Jones, who is a member of Labour Friends of Palestine, reportedly muttered the insult as Regev was about to begin his speech.

The MP refused to comment on the incident, but a friend detailed the incident to the Mail.
Anti-Semitic campaign to blame Jews and Israel for U.S. police practices towards minorities shifts into overdrive
In the years since the September 11 attacks, scholarship asserting that the U.S.-initiated global war on terror (GWOT) has eroded American civil liberties has burgeoned into a cottage industry. Much of this literature challenges the military-industrial complex surrounding U.S. counterterror efforts and some of it condemns militarized state violence and the increasingly militarized approaches to local policing that the GWOT has facilitated.

It’s certainly possible to question this body of work, which in my view tends to underplay threats to homeland security, is overly skeptical of public-private security partnerships, and in general treats U.S law enforcement agencies with an unwarranted degree of suspicion and hostility.

Still, there’s nothing wrong with JVP’s efforts to bring this scholarship to the attention of the American public—as it does in its new co-authored report and accompanying database produced with RAIA, which cite a few reputable studies on the topic like Nikhil Pal Singh’s Race and America’s Long War.

Bur where these new “Deadly Exchange” campaign materials go off the rails is in attributing America’s post 9/11 policing problems, violence against minorities, criminalization and incarceration rates, and the ongoing problem of racism in the U.S. to Israel and to the Jewish American organizations that host counterterrorism trainings for police officials with their Israeli counterparts—as if a police chief’s participation in a week-long seminar in Israel determines his or her department’s rules of engagement or drives the behavior of cops on the beat.

Bottom line: JVP and the other virulently anti-Israel groups are now trying to convince American liberals that if they care about social justice issues like policing problems or racial injustice, then they must also revile Israel and the American Jews who cause the suffering of U.S. minority communities at the hands of the state. This vicious antisemitic campaign must be opposed by all Americans of good will.
Arizona cancels law preventing boycotting Israel
An Arizona law requiring contractors not to boycott Israel was overruled by a federal court on Friday, claiming that it violates the free speech rights of the contractors under the First Ammendment of the Constitution, according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The state law "unquestionably burdens the protected expression of companies wishing to engage in such a boycott," according to US District Court Judge Diane J. Humetewa, the first Native American woman to be appointed as a federal judge.

The law, enacted in 2016, states that any contracters that work with state or local government in Arizona must have written certification that they are not and will not boycott Israel.

The ACLU attempted to challenge the Arizona law on behalf of attorney Mikkel Jordahl, who stated that "boycotts are an important way for people to collectively call for social change."

"It should be clear that we as individuals have a right to engage in peaceful individual boycotts," he continued.
Israeli student at Columbia says she’s being bullied by Palestinian group
As an officer in the Israel Defense Forces, Ofir Dayan served in hostile territory in Gaza and Lebanon. But, the undergrad told The Post, nothing prepared her for life at Columbia University.

Ofir, the 24-year-old daughter of Israel Consul General in New York Dani Dayan, said she is harassed and threatened over her background by the group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), and that the school is failing to protect her.

“SJP is violent,” she said. “I’m worried about my personal safety.”

The political science major had her initial run-in about a month into the fall 2017 semester, when she was in the lobby of Knox Hall — home to the Middle East Institute — having a phone conversation in Hebrew.

“A girl heard me and started screaming, ‘Stop killing Muslim ­babies! . . . You’re a murderer!’ ” Ofir said. “Then she screamed, ‘Zionist, get out!’ A nearby public-safety ­administrator did nothing.”

In October 2017, Ofir said, she and four members of Students Supporting Israel (SSI) — she is the vice-president of the Columbia chapter — were leaving an on-campus event for Israeli beauty queen Titi Aynaw. “The ­moment [members of SJP] saw us, they started screaming their slogans with a microphone to intimidate us. There were at least 50 SJP members blocking the walkway.

“They were really angry and it was scary,” said Ofir, a vocal supporter of the Jewish state. “I believed it would escalate to physical violence.”

Ofir and SSI filed a complaint about the incident to the Student Governing Board (SGB) in January. It ­described, in part, “horrified and terrified Jewish students huddled together while surrounded by a raging mob . . . [exhibiting] physically threatening behavior.” She also submitted cellphone video that she had recorded of the protesters being “hostile.” (Dalia Zahger, chapter president of SSI, agreed that the incident was “really scary.”)
Facebook Introduces Post-Graduate Requirement for Commenting on Arab-Israeli Conflict (satire)
In a blow to online experts everywhere Facebook has restricted the ability of users to comment on the Arab-Israeli conflict until they have delivered proof of at least four years higher education (six if you went to Tel Aviv University, cause we all know that’s just a party school). Facebook spokeswoman Sarah Bluestein said “we’ve discovered that while we are the perfect outlet for sharing videos of people falling down holes and anything to do with kittens, we are far less useful as a forum for complex current affairs.”

One Facebook fanatic demurred “it’s a known fact that anyone objecting to the fact that former President Obama is a Communist Muslim is a goose stepping, black uniform wearing, furnace owner. Look I’ve picked up 232 likes already.” And British Guardian reader Paul Shire was quick to point out on his stream that “everyone recognizes we are now all brothers in the ‘third Intifada,’ though I grant you I’m a little hazy on what the word ‘Intifada’ actually means.” From Friday, comments on the Arab-Israeli Conflict will be restricted to a minimum 10,000-word essay with supporting notes and a fully referenced bibliography, only to be uploaded after passing a double-blind peer-review process.

Facebook has however confirmed that videos of Hamas fighters blowing themselves up by accident to the “Andy Griffith” theme are still hilarious and welcome.
New York Times Can’t See Past Miriam Adelson’s Israeliness
A front-page New York Times news article, under the headline, “They Spent $55 Million To Tighten G.O.P.’s Grip,” describes Sheldon and Miriam Adelson as “the biggest spenders on federal elections in all of American politics, according to publicly available campaign finance data.”

That’s misleading. Not mentioned in the front-page Times article is Michael Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City and a possible 2020 candidate for president himself. Axios reported, “Michael Bloomberg’s spending on House races in the midterms has passed the $80 million he promised for the cycle and is heading toward $100 million as he sees an increasing chance for Democrats to win control.”

The election cycle isn’t over yet, but if Bloomberg spends $100 million and the Adelsons spend $55 million, readers might reasonably wonder why Times editors judge the Adelsons’ spending, but not Bloomberg’s, worthy of a front-page Times article. A hint of a possible answer comes in the Times reference to Adelson’s wife: “Dr. Adelson, who is Israeli.” Dr. Adelson is also an American, which is how she is legally allowed to donate to American political candidates. The Times, alas, doesn’t seem to be able to see past the “Israeli” part. (The Times CEO, Mark Thompson, is British, and its largest economic owner, Carlos Slim, is Mexican, which makes Dr. Adelson more American than either one of those two, if the Times is going to start throwing around these national origin identifiers.)

Instead, the Times article tries to make it seem like the Adelsons are buying Trump’s positions on things such as the Jerusalem embassy and the Iran nuclear deal in a kind of quid pro quo, using phrases like “return on investment” and “deliver major, long-sought policy victories for conservative Jews like the Adelsons.” The Times says, “More than a dozen people who know the Adelsons professionally or personally, some of whom are also friendly with Mr. Trump, said in interviews that the durability of Mr. Adelson’s relationship with the president hinges not on any personal affinity between the two, but on a mutual appreciation for something both men have built their careers on: the transaction.”
IsraellyCool: No Israelis on Forbes List of The Middle East’s Most Influential Women
Forbes has released their list of The Middle East’s Most Influential Women. Can you guess which Middle East country does not have even one representative on the list?

Note how Australia, UK, Malaysia and India are included, despite not being part of the Middle East.

And “Palestine” has representatives (#48 and #79), a woman in the banking and financial services industry, as well as one in education. As if Israel does not have many such women who are even more influential.

In fact, a list of the 50 most influential Israeli women was published by Forbes Israel just last year. Any of these women deserve to be on this new list.

I guess you could argue women in the other Middle Eastern countries/areas have it so much worse than Israeli women, so their achievements are greater. Or that what Forbes meant was Most Influential Muslim Women. But as it stands, this list does not seem kosher.
Synagogue in North Carolina cancels weekend activities over threatening letters
A synagogue in Raleigh, North Carolina, canceled some weekend activities after synagogue workers and board members received threatening letters.

Raleigh police and the FBI are investigating the threats against Temple Beth Or, local NBC affiliate WRAL reported.

The synagogue canceled Sunday school and an end-of-summer party last weekend after the letters, which contained a “specific threat,” were received on Saturday evening, according to WRAL.

Synagogue officials would not tell the news station what was in the letters, except to say that they contained “hateful rhetoric.”
Roman Polanski making film on Dreyfus Affair
Roman Polanski, the famed director and convicted sex offender, is working on a film about a wrongly accused man.

The French-Jewish filmmaker is set to begin shooting a movie later this year about Capt. Alfred Dreyfus, the French-Jewish soldier who was falsely accused of spying for the Nazis. Dreyfus was tried and convicted of treason in 1894, but he was later pardoned, set free and exonerated of the charges. Public opinion and antisemitism were said to play a significant role in the story. The Dreyfus Affair, as it became known, has remained a famous and well-known chapter in history that has been made into dozens of plays and films.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Polanski is slated to begin shooting the movie, called J'Accuse, for Legende Films in Paris in the coming months. The report stated that Louis Garrel will play Dreyfus and Oscar-winner Jean Dujardin will play the officer who proved his innocence.

Polanski has been working on this film project for the past six years. But, in the wake of the #metoo movement, his acceptance in the international film community is more in question than ever.
Gal Gadot lands role in 'Death on the Nile'
Israeli actress Gal Gadot is adding yet another new role to her busy schedule: the lead in the upcoming Fox film Death on the Nile. reportedly exclusively that Gadot was selected by Fox to start in a remake of the Agatha Christie novel, which is already slated for release on December 20, 2019. Christie published the novel in 1937, and it was made into a successful film in 1978, starring Bette Davis, Mia Farrow and Maggie Smith.

Fox is considering the upcoming remake a follow-up to its 2017 Murder on the Orient Express, the adaptation of another Christie novel featuring the detective Hercule Poirot. Kenneth Branagh is slated to reprise his role as both the director and star in Death on the Nile.

Gadot is slated to play Linnet Ridgeway Doyle, a rich heiress. The Rosh Ha’ayin native is currently shooting the Wonder Woman sequel, and will be seen in the animated film Ralph Breaks the Internet this November.

In addition, Gadot is set to star in an art heist movie opposite Dwayne Johson titled Red Notice, is producing a film about Fidel Castro and is slated to portray Hedy Lamarr in a miniseries for Showtime.
Israeli gymnast Artem Dolgopyat wins gold at World Cup Challenge
Israeli gymnast Artem Dolgopyat won a gold medal Sunday after coming in first at the Paris World Challenge Cup’s floor exercise.

The 21-year-old Ukrainian-born Dolgopyat scored 14.950.

Dolgopyat’s mentor and trainer, Israeli gymnast Alex Shatilov, 31, came in fourth with a score of 14.500.

The World Challenge Cup is part of a series of competitions known as the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup. The competition is organized by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG).

Last month, Dolgopyat overcame a mistake in his floor routine to take the silver medal at the European Gymnastics Championships in Glasgow.

Dolgopyat scored 14.466 for his routine, which included a penalty as he stepped off the mat in one of his landings. He was beaten to the gold by Britain’s Dominick Cunningham.

That result won Dolgopyat a grant of NIS 28,000 ($7,500) awarded jointly by the Israel Olympic Committee, the Culture and Sports Ministry and the Sports Betting Council.

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I wish all my Jewish readers a happy Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah!

I will not be blogging from Sunday night to Tuesday night.

You can see two of my previous articles on Simchat Torah flags here and here.

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King Abdullah of Jordan told the UN:

 I am compelled to talk about this today because of the critical role of collective action in ending the serious crises in my region, and especially the key crisis—the long denial of a Palestinian state.

Every UN resolution since the beginning of this crisis—every resolution, whether from the General Assembly or the Security Council—recognises the equal rights of the Palestinian people to a future of peace, dignity, and hope. This is the heart of the two-state settlement, the only path to a comprehensive, lasting peace.

Only a two-state solution based on international law and relevant UN resolutions can meet the needs of both sides: an end to conflict, a viable, independent, sovereign Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, and a secure Israel, fully part of its own region, recognised by Arab and Muslim states around the world.
But when Jordan controlled the West Bank, it was against any sort of Palestinian Arab state on the territory it claimed. Even the Palestinian Arabs didn't talk at all about creating a state in the territories - only in Israel.

And when Palestinians tried to turn Jordan into a Palestinian state in 1970, they were brutally attacked and their leaders forced out. Thousands were killed in the fighting.

It is always amusing to see how Jordan now is talking about how the UN wanted a Palestinian Arab state in 1947 and not a single Arab nation, including Transjordan at the time, supported the idea.

The desire for a Palestinian state is directly proportional to how much it will negatively affect Israel. Otherwise, no Arab is interested in such a state at all.

And they never were.

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The Second Intifada was a multiyear terror spree that resulted in the deaths of thousands of Israelis and Palestinians.

It killed the Oslo peace process.

It convinced countless leftist Israelis that there is no actual partner for peace on the Palestinian side.

And Fatah, the party headed by Mahmoud Abbas, is celebrating the beginning of the terror spree that began 19 years ago.

They even mention that their own National Security forces, who were armed by the world to maintain peace, participated in the attacks on Israel.

Yet when Abbas speaks about "peace" to the UN, no one has the guts to ask him about why his own party celebrates terror and violence, every single day, in their own media.

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Saturday, September 29, 2018

From Ian:

Why this Christian Tory peer leads the fight in the UK against Holocaust denial
The British Labour party has become “a hotbed of bigotry and racism,” the country’s special envoy for post-Holocaust issues said in a recent interview with The Times of Israel.

Eric Pickles, who was appointed to the House of Lords this summer, also accused Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn of encouraging “something rather base and horrid to come to the surface” in the party.

In the wide-ranging interview, Pickles, who served as a Cabinet minister under the Conservative party’s former prime minister David Cameron, hints that the UK may soon proscribe Hezbollah in its entirety and says he opposes Britain’s attempts to help salvage the Iran nuclear deal.

Pickles also says it was “utterly wrong” for Conservative members of the European parliament to oppose censuring the Hungarian government of Viktor Orbán in a September 12 vote. Orbán’s government has been accused of deploying “vivid anti-Semitism” in its campaign against the Jewish philanthropist George Soros.

As the Conservative party begins its annual conference in Birmingham this weekend, Pickles launches a scathing attack on Corbyn.

Referring to the allegations of anti-Semitism which have dogged Labour under Corbyn’s leadership, Pickles asks: “How can anybody live with themselves with this great damage that they have inflicted on good community relations in this country?”

NGO Monitor: Statement on “Shrinking Space” Report
NGO Monitor is the only independent research organization in the world that critically examines the reports and activities of politicized NGOs, with a focus on the context of international development aid. Given the importance of civil society participation in conflict-ridden areas, transparency, accountability, and critical analysis are essential, and we take this work seriously.

We are aware of the concerted effort to discredit and silence all critical analysis. This pseudo-report funded by a German far-left political foundation is the latest example. Serious research, however, does not rely on fringe ideologues with obvious conflicts of interest, desperately seeking to protect their access to European state and EU budgets. NGO Monitor’s success in exposing the millions in taxpayer funds given annually, without transparency, to false human rights and development NGOs, some of which are linked to terror organizations and/or use antisemitic motifs, speaks for itself. Indeed, this smear campaign highlights the importance and credibility of our work.

We plan to vigorously enforce our rights against the many false and defamatory claims made in the report and by those who have disseminated the claims.
Real Madrid's guest of honor is teen terrorist
Real Madrid, a Spanish soccer club, on Friday hosted teen terrorist Ahed Tamimi.

Tamimi served an eight-month prison sentence for attacking IDF soldiers, and has since said that her goal is to "eliminate Israel."

Tamimi met with Emilio Butragueño, a former Real Madrid player.

She also received a soccer shirt sporting her name and the number 9.

Real Madrid welcomed Palestinian teenage activist Ahed Tamimi to the Santiago Bernabeu yesterday after spending eight months in prison for slapping an Israeli soldier in December 2017," the team tweeted Saturday.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon tweeted, "The prestigious soccer club of Real Madrid embraces a terrorist inciting to hatred and violence. Shameful."

"Ahed Tamimi is promoting violence against Israeli citizens. @realmadrid-receiving a terrorist that incites hatred and violence is something that has nothing to do with universal football values."

IDF: Over 100 bombs, grenades hurled at troops during Friday’s Gaza riots
Over 100 improvised bombs and grenades were hurled at Israeli troops during Friday’s riots at the Gaza border, the military said Saturday.

The army released footage of the violent demonstrations, which it said were the worst in two months, depicting attempts to breach and sabotage the security fence.

It also said IDF forces were still engaged in the controlled detonation of unexploded bombs and grenades.

Meanwhile in Gaza Saturday funerals were held for the seven Palestinians killed in the previous day’s violence, including two teen boys.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians protested along the Gaza border fence, throwing hand grenades, bombs, rocks, and burning tires in clashes with IDF troops, who responded with tear gas, live fire, and air strikes.

The protest was one of the largest and most violent in recent weeks and comes following the break down of indirect talks with Israel over a cease-fire and warnings that the terror group Hamas, which rules Gaza, was gearing up for another conflict.

Seven people were killed, including a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old, and at least 210 Palestinians were wounded, including an 11-year-old boy, who was in a serious condition, according to the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry. It said 90 of the wounded were hit by live fire.

Netanyahu walks a fine line as Trump embraces two-state paradigm
Granting several interviews to American media outlets before departing New York, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu avoided repeated questioning on his endorsement of a two-state solution to Israel's conflict with the Palestinians, just days after US President Donald Trump for the first time signaled a preference for it.

Speaking with CNN, NPR and others, Netanyahu said he was less interested in "labels" for solutions than their contents, detailing a settlement with the Palestinians that grants them all of the benefits of sovereignty without the ability to attack to the Jewish state.

"My view of a potential agreement is that the Palestinians have all the powers to govern themselves but none of the powers to threaten us. The key power that must, must not be in their hands is the question of security," he told NPR's Steve Inskeep. "I don't want them either as citizens of Israel or subjects of Israel. But I think there is not an either-or model. I think we have a third model at the very least which is what I'm talking about: basically all the powers of sovereignty, or nearly all the powers, but not the ones of security."

Trump's Middle East peace team has been working for 20 months on a comprehensive proposal for a settlement to the conflict, likely to be rolled out by the end of the year, according to the president, who sat before Netanyahu on Wednesday told him that he has concluded two states "works best."

The prime minister told CNN's Elise Labott that he would "seriously" look at the White House plan, although dodged her question on how he would respond to a series of Trump-backed proposals disadvantageous to him politically.

He has mentioned the idea of a Palestinian "state-minus" in the past, conditioned on a near-permanent Israeli military presence in the Jordan Valley.

"Look, in the Middle East, which is littered with failed states, that's often the best you can do," he continued. "They would have those rights in their own territory. In other words, they have their own Parliament, they have their own government, they have their own flag, they have their own anthem, they have their own tax system."
Netanyahu to CNN: Israel Must Have ‘Overriding’ Security Control in Any Two-State Solution
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel must exercise “overriding” security control of the West Bank in any two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In an interview with CNN, Netanyahu addressed President Donald Trump’s seeming endorsement of the two-state solution during a meeting between the two men on Wednesday.

“Israel has to have the overriding security,” in any political arrangement with the Palestinians, he said, “not the UN, not Canadian Mounties, not — I don’t know — Austrian or Australian forces — Israeli forces have to have the security control, otherwise that place will be taken over by Islamist terrorists, either ISIS or Hamas or Iran, all of the above. And that’s my condition.”

“People say, ‘Was that commensurate with a state?'” he added. “I don’t know, you decide. … I want the Palestinians to govern themselves, but not to be able to threaten us.”

“I’ve discovered that, if you use labels, you’re not going to get very far because different people mean different things when they say ‘states.’ So rather than talk about labels, I’d like to talk about substance,” he said.

Netanyahu has consistently stood by his demand for Israeli security control over the West Bank for some time.
Netanyahu was to reveal ‘third site’ in speech on Iran, but intel chiefs said no
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu intended to reveal a third batch of intelligence material in his UN speech on Thursday, in which he exposed what he said was a “secret atomic warehouse” in Tehran and revealed details of Hezbollah missile factories in Beirut, a senior Israeli official said at the weekend.

Netanyahu ultimately elected not to include the third revelation in his address to the General Assembly because the security establishment recommended that he not do so, Israel’s Channel 10 news said Saturday night.

Beyond indicating that the intelligence material related to “a third site,” the official provided no further details of the information.

Netanyahu’s decision to specify the location and alleged content of the Tehran atomic warehouse, from which he said the Iranians recently removed 15 kilograms of radioactive material, was taken after consultations with the security establishment and with its approval, the prime minister has made clear.

Israel had provided details of the warehouse to the IAEA and to the US administration six weeks ago, but Netanyahu charged that the IAEA failed to act. It was decided after security consultations at the Prime Minister’s Office that Netanyahu would publicize the information at the UN, in the hope of galvanizing the IAEA into action.

Since his speech, the US has indeed asked the IAEA to investigate the site, and Netanyahu also asked UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to push the IAEA on this.

Immediately after Netanyahu’s speech, meanwhile, the IDF published further information on the Hezbollah missile factories that Netanyahu had referred to.
Iran scrambling to cover up newly revealed nuclear site, Israeli official says
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s revelation at the UN on Thursday of a previously unknown Iranian nuclear site has caused “growing pressure inside Iran,” a senior Israeli official said over the weekend.

“They’re wondering how to deal with this facility, how to evacuate it, how to cover it up,” the official said. “There is no doubt it is a very important site for them; they’re seeking to conceal it and stall in any way possible.”

According to the official, the 15 kilograms of radioactive material that Netanyahu said was removed from the facility and dispersed around Tehran was taken away at the beginning of August.

Netanyahu, meanwhile, told Israeli reporters in a briefing Friday that it was past time for the IAEA to act, and that Iran had been exposed “as deceiving and cheating the international community.” He also said that Iran was aiming to break out to a nuclear arsenal when it deems the time ripe: “There’ll be a crisis somewhere or other, and they’ll [take advantage of the distraction] to break out to a nuclear arsenal,” he warned. “That’s the Iranian plan.”
Netanyahu to Haley: With you at the U.N things are much better
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley on Friday and told her that the hall used by the UN General Assembly is "still full of anti-Israeli decisions, but with you in the UN things are much better."

"What you did with President Trump regarding UNWRA, amazing," he said, before thanking her on behalf of the people of Israel and friends of Israel around the world.
Danon slams Abbas' 'imaginary initiatives'
Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Danny Danon on Thursday slammed Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas for creating "imaginary initiatives" at the UN.

Following Abbas' Thursday speech at the UN General Assembly, Danon said, "Abu Mazen (Abbas - ed.) knows only one word 'no.' Not 'direct negotiations,' not 'Israel,' not the 'Americans.'"

"On one hand he brings imaginary initiatives to the UN, and with the other, he pays millions of dollars to terrorists.

"Abu Mazen must understand that if there will be negotiations, it can only be directly with Israel, and not through speeches at the UN."

Danon also praised Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's General Assembly speech.

"In a strong speech, the Prime Minister presented a mirror to the countries of the world and exposed the Iranian terror machine, which never stops despite [Iranian President Hassan] Rouhani covering the world's eyes with tricks."

"The UN must join the just path and stop the Iranian regime "
PA asks top UN court to order removal of American embassy from Jerusalem
The Palestinian Authority filed a case Friday with the United Nations’ highest court asking its judges to order Washington to remove the recently relocated US embassy from Jerusalem.

The move announced by the Hague-based International Court of Justice comes against a backdrop of deeply strained ties between Washington and the Palestinians, in part because of the Trump Administration’s decision in December to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move the US embassy there from Tel Aviv in May. The Palestinian Authority broke off contact with the US after the Jerusalem announcement.

The court said that the Palestinians’ case asks its judges “to order the United States of America to withdraw the diplomatic mission from the Holy City of Jerusalem.”

Cases at the court can take years to complete. Its decisions are final and legally binding, but are not always adhered to. No date was immediately set for hearings.

The ICJ is the UN’s body for settling disputes between states, whereas the International Criminal Court is used as war crimes tribunal. While the Palestinians have appealed to the ICC several times, they have rarely taken disputes to the ICJ.

The last ICJ ruling that affected Israel was a 2004 verdict against the construction of the West Bank security barrier. Earlier this month, Israel participated in a debate at the ICJ for the first time in more than half a century, in what Israeli officials described as an effort to get the Jewish state more involved in matters of international law that have nothing to do with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Netanyahu says Israel, Rwanda to open mutual embassies
During their meeting Thursday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Rwandan President Paul Kagame agreed to open embassies in each other’s countries, Netanyahu said Friday. In time, he said, he hoped the embassy would move to Jerusalem.

The prime minister told Israeli reporters traveling with him in the US that Rwanda also wants to open a direct flight line between Kigali and Tel Aviv.

The two leaders met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly to discuss regional threats including that posed by Iran.

They also discussed the situation in the Horn of Africa and the peace agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea. Netanyahu apparently asked for Kagame’s assistance in advancing ties with additional African countries.

In April, Rwanda denied it had ever made an agreement with Israel to take in deported asylum seekers, responding to Netanyahu’s claim that it had backed out of a deal he had spent two years working on.

Netanyahu said at the time that he had been “working with Rwanda so that it will serve as a third-party country to absorb” deported migrants.
Swedish far-right party calls to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
The Sweden Democrats, a right-wing populist party, submitted a draft motion urging their government to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and recognize the city as Israel’s capital.

Bjorn Soder, a former leader and current lawmaker for the Sweden Democrats, submitted the draft motion to the Riksdag, or parliament, on Thursday. It would be read as a nonbinding resolution.

“The Riksdag stands behind what is stated in the motion to formally acknowledge Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and announces this to the government,” the draft resolution reads. “The Riksdag stands behind what is stated in the motion and supports moving Sweden’s embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and announcing this to the government.”

Sweden’s Sept. 9 election left the center-left bloc, whose policy on Israel was one of the most hostile in the European Union, with just one seat more than the center-right Alliance, with the Sweden Democrats as the third biggest group.
Malaysian PM at U.N.: Israel Creation 'Root Cause' of Islamic Terror
The United Nations applauded the self-professed anti-Semite prime minister of Muslim-majority Malaysia after his tirade against Israel during the international body’s annual gathering of the General Assembly, the world’s biggest stage for peace and diplomacy.

Echoing previous public remarks, Malaysia PM Mahathir bin Mohamad on Friday said the creation of the Israeli state is the “root cause” of Islamic terrorism and justified the Palestinians taking up arms against Israel.

He told world leaders:
This present war against the terrorists will not end until the root causes are found and removed and hearts and minds are won. What are the root causes? In 1948, Palestinian land was seized to form the state of Israel. The Palestinians were massacred and forced to leave their land. Their homes and farms were seized … Frustrated and angry, unable to fight a conventional war, the Palestinians resort to what we call terrorism.

The world does not care even when Israel breaks international laws, seizing ships carrying medicine, food, and building materials in international waters. The Palestinians fired ineffective rockets which hurt no one. Massive retaliations were mounted by Israel, rocketing and bombing hospitals, schools and other buildings, killing innocent civilians including school children and hospital patients.

He stressed his position against U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Gazans burn pictures of Abbas
Hamas on Thursday blasted the speech of Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas at the UN General Assembly, saying it was clear proof of the failure of his policy to reach a just solution for the Palestinian people.

The terrorist group, which rules Gaza, said in a statement that Abbas’ insistence on continuing the path of negotiations was a waste of time and an opportunity for the "enemy" to change the political reality through settlement and Judaization and thwart the realization of the right of return.

Hamas attacked Abbas for describing the armed forces in Gaza as "militia" and "terrorism", saying that these words are a stab in the back of the “martyrs”, the “resistance” and history of the Palestinian people.

The statement said that the threats of additional punitive measures against Gaza made by Abbas in his speech at the UN pose a danger to the Palestinian national fabric and to the future of internal Palestinian reconciliation.

Hamas called for a halt to the "failed" Oslo Accords and for an immediate end to the security coordination between the Palestinian Authority and Israel.

At the same time, Hamas relaunched a media campaign against Abbas and the Palestinian Authority, focusing on the claim that Abbas does not represent the Palestinian people and in fact has become a traitor.
Syria to U.N.: Israel assisted terrorists, we'll liberate Golan Heights
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem addressed the UN General Assembly on Saturday, saying that Israel was responsible for terrorism in the war-torn country because of frequent attacks.

Muallem continued by arguing that the country was now ready for the voluntary return of refugees who fled during the more than seven-year conflict as the battle against terrorism is almost over.

"We welcome any assistance with reconstruction from those countries that were not part of the aggression on Syria," he said. "The countries that offer only conditional assistance or continue to support terrorism, they are neither invited nor welcome to help."

In addition, the Syrian FM said that the country was determined to liberate the 'occupied' Golan Heights from Israel.

He also invited a commission of inquiry into Syria, proving that all chemical weapons had been dismantled.

On the sidelines of the UNGA, Muallem met with his Iranian counterpart earlier in the day, discussing the implementation of the Russian-Turkish memorandum on the creation of the demilitarized zone in Syrian Idlib, the Russian Sputnik news agency reported.
Russian FM: S-300 surface-to-air missile batteries delivered to Syria
Russia has started delivering S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Syrian forces, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday.

Speaking at a news conference at the United Nations in New York, Lavrov said that the "the delivery started already" and that the measure had been taken following the downing of a Russian Il-20 reconnaissance plane over Syria.

"As President [Vladimir] Putin said, after that incident ... the measures that we will take will be devoted to ensuring 100 percent safety and security of our men," he said.

Fifteen Russian servicemen were killed when the IL-20 was hit by a Syrian anti-aircraft missile off the coastal city of Latakia. Moscow has placed the blame for the incident solely on Israel and has accused the IDF of having endangered the lives of personnel in Syria during other military operations.

The incident has led to one of the lowest points in the relationship between Jerusalem and Moscow in years.
Netanyahu says Russian supply of S-300 missiles to Syria ‘irresponsible’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has criticized Russia’s decision to provide advanced anti-aircraft systems to Syria as “irresponsible,” but said Israel was committed to continued deconfliction with Moscow in its military operations in the region.

Speaking to CNN in New York after the annual UN General Assembly, Netanyahu said that he spoke to Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this month after Syrian forces responding to an Israeli airstrike mistakenly shot down a Russian military reconnaissance plane, killing all 15 people on board.

Netanyahu said he told Putin, “Let’s continue this deconfliction, but at the same time, I told him very respectfully and very clearly that Israel will do, will continue to do what it has to do to defend itself.”

He said both sides wanted to avoid a military clash in Syria, noting that the many militaries and other groups operating in the region were making it “very crowded over there in this tiny space.

“Through this mess, we’ve been able for three years to avoid any clash between … between Russian and Israeli forces,” he said. “I think there’s a desire on both our part and Russia’s part to…. avoid a clash.”
US pushes forward with plans for anti-Iran Arab alliance
The Trump administration pressed ahead Friday with plans to create an “Arab NATO” that would unite US partners in the Middle East in an anti-Iran alliance, but Qatar said the crisis among Gulf countries must be solved first.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met in New York with foreign ministers from Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to advance the project.

The State Department said Pompeo had stressed the need to defeat the Islamic State group and other terrorist organizations as well as ending the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, securing Iraq and “stopping Iran’s malign activity in the region.”

Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani told a news conference afterward that the alliance should be built on existing institutions, and he asked how that could be done when the most powerful Gulf countries have been engaged in a more-than-yearlong dispute.

“The real challenge facing the US-led alliance is to solve the Gulf crisis,” he said.

It pits Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates against Qatar, and has split the membership of the main regional group, the Gulf Cooperation Council or GCC.
Iranian Revolutionary Guards Warns Saudi Arabia, UAE to Respect Its ‘Red Lines’
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) told Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on Friday to respect Tehran’s “red lines” or face retaliation, as the United States and its Gulf allies increase pressure on Tehran to curb its regional influence.

Iran accuses Saudi Arabia and the UAE of funding five gunmen who attacked a military parade in Iran last Saturday and killed 25 people, 12 of them members of the elite IRGC. Saudi Arabia and the UAE have denied any involvement.

“If you cross our red lines, we will surely cross yours. You know the storm the Iranian nation can create,” the Fars news agency quoted Brigadier General Hossein Salami, deputy head of the Guards, as saying.

Addressing worshipers attending Friday prayers in Tehran, Salami said in a strongly-worded speech: “Stop creating plots and tensions. You are not invincible. You are sitting in a glass house and cannot tolerate the revenge of the Iranian nation. … We have shown self-restraint.”

Salami also told the United States to “stop supporting the terrorists or they will pay the price.”

Iran has accused the United States of supporting the assailants who carried out last Saturday’s attack. Washington has denied having any prior knowledge of the incident.

The Revolutionary Guards vowed on Sunday to exact “deadly and unforgettable” vengeance for Saturday’s attack.
US closes consulate in southern Iraq after attack by Iran-backed militia
The State Department said Friday that it would temporarily close the US consulate in the southern Iraqi city of Basra following a rocket attack earlier this month blamed on Iranian-backed militias.

Diplomatic staff and their families were being evacuated and consular services will be provided from the US Embassy in Baghdad, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called it a “temporary relocation” in response to what he called “increasing and specific threats” from the Iranian government and militias under its control. He warned that the US would respond to any more attacks.

“I have advised the government of Iran that the United States will hold Iran directly responsible for any harm to Americans or to our diplomatic facilities in Iraq or elsewhere and whether perpetrated by Iranian forces directly or by associated proxy militias,” he said.
Merkel stays silent on pro-Iran policy ahead of Israel visit
Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel announced on Saturday in a podcast video that the Federal Republic and Israel share a unique relationship, but she remained silent about her country’s support for the Iran nuclear deal and trade with the regime that calls for the Jewish state’s destruction.

“A unique relationship connects Germany and Israel. We can be grateful that we are today close partners and friends,” said Merkel in advance of the seventh German-Israel joint cabinet consultation, slated to take place in the first week of October in Jerusalem.

Merkel, however, was silent on her government’s advocacy for the controversial 2015 Iran atomic deal that Israel vehemently opposes because of its alleged defects, including permitting the Islamic Republic a legal path after the agreement’s expiration to build a nuclear weapons device.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu alluded to his frustration with Europe in his speech to the UN General Assembly last in week that could be viewed as part of the growing German-Israeli rift over Merkel’s pro-Iran deal position: “Europe and others are appeasing Iran by trying to help it bypass those new sanctions,” stated Netanyahu.
MEMRI: Senior Iranian Official Hossein Amir-Abdollahian: Israelis Weak Compared To Iranians, Bones Of Zionists Will Be Crushed, Iranian Forces In Syria Can 'Take Any Action'
Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, who is the special assistant to the speaker of the Iranian parliament and a former Iranian deputy foreign minister, was interviewed on Iraq's Al-Nujaba TV network. Abdollahian said that Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen is a Zionist plot to weaken Saudi Arabia, and that the Saudis' collaboration with the Zionists and the Americans is a "path towards division and weakness." He said that the Zionist slogan is "From the Nile to the Euphrates," and that the Iraqi people should not trust Israel because it is plotting against Iraq. He also expressed confidence that Jerusalem will be liberated. When asked whether Iran would attack Israel from the Golan Heights, Abdollahian added that Iran will respond as quickly as possible to any Israeli threat, and added that the Israelis will "taste bitter defeat," and that "the bones of the Zionists will undoubtedly be crushed." The interview aired on September 21, 2018.

"In Order To Be Able To Divide, Weaken, And Exhaust Saudi Arabia, The Zionists Entangled It In A Conflict In Yemen"

Hossein Amir-Abdollahian: "Sadly, the Saudi regime thinks that through money and policies – by handing out dollars – it can win countries over. We believe that Saudi Arabia's role as a big brother is a thing of the past. We believe that the Saudi war against Yemen is 100% a Zionist plot. In order to be able to divide, weaken, and exhaust Saudi Arabia, the Zionists entangled it in a conflict in Yemen.

"I am one of the diplomats who are worried about the future of Saudi Arabia. Israel's map for the future of the region includes the division of Saudi Arabia. The Zionists entangled Saudi Arabia in a conflict between two Muslim countries in order to weaken both of them. The division of Saudi Arabia is not in the interest of Iran or in the interest of the other countries in the region. As much as we defend national unity and cohesion in Iraq and Syria, we defend national unity in Saudi Arabia, as a Muslim country. However, the Saudi rulers' collaboration with the Americans and the Zionists inadvertently puts Saudi Arabia on a path towards division and weakness.

"The Palestinian cause is still on many Iraqis' minds. The most important thing, which we must keep in mind, is that the Zionist slogan is: 'From the Nile to the Euphrates.' They strive for regional hegemony from the Nile to the Euphrates. A high-ranking Palestinian politician recently showed me a document which said that in the first years of the occupation of Palestine, the Zionists minted coins that showed the map of Greater Israel. That map included Iraq in its entirety, as well as large parts of the Saudi and Egyptian territories. This is the dream and intention of the Israelis and the Zionists. We should pin no hope on the Zionists and we must not trust them. The Iraqi people need to understand that the Israelis are plotting against Iraq. They have big dreams for Iraq."
Iran says it expects EU to set up mechanism to bypass US sanctions by November
Iran on Saturday said it expected the European Union to establish a legal framework by November 4 to bypass American sanctions and to allow the continuation of trade between Tehran and EU member states.

The European Union said Monday its members would set up a payment system to allow oil companies and businesses to continue trading with Iran, in a bid to evade sanctions after the US withdrew from a historic nuclear agreement signed in 2015.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said in an interview with the official IRNA news agency that “the mechanisms initiated by Europe should begin at the most by November 4,” according to Hadashot TV.

November 4 is the date on which US sanctions against its vital oil industry are set to begin.

After high-level talks at the United Nations among the remaining members of the nuclear accord, Iran and the European Union announced their defiance towards US President Donald Trump’s administration, saying in a statement that they were determined “to protect the freedom of their economic operators to pursue legitimate business with Iran.”
Shiraz official arrested over sign depicting IDF troops
Iranian public relation official Muhammad Shabani was detained on Thursday for questioning after a billboard meant to honor Sacred Defense Week in the city of Shiraz was discovered accidentally using images of IDF troops, Iranian social media reports.

The troops, presented without a female soldier that was in the original picture, are depicted next to a quote from poet Ali Moalem Damghani, which commemorated martyrs from past wars. They hold M-16 rifles, which the Iranian army does not use.

The original photograph was taken by Timon Studler and was uploaded onto the website.

Iranian residents of the city discovered the source of the image and began sharing it on social media with the Israeli original, which lead to it being removed on Thursday.
Danish Jews re-enact community’s Holocaust flight to Sweden 75 years ago
Dozens of Danish Jews, including five Holocaust survivors, participated in a re-enactment of the rescue 75 years ago of Danish Jewry from the Nazi genocide.

Local Chabad emissaries Rabbi Yitzi and Rochel Loewenthal organized the re-enactment, the first of several events this year marking the rescue of thousands of Danish Jews in October 1943 by local fishermen and other boat operators, on Wednesday, the Hebrew calendar date of the operation.

In the operation, which involved the Danish underground, some 7,200 Jews were ferried across the Oresund straits to neutral Sweden days after the Nazi occupation forces in Denmark began moving on its Jewish population.

“When we hit Swedish waters, we said Kaddish,” Rochel Loewenthal told JTA on Thursday, naming the Jewish mourning prayer. It was recited for Holocaust victims and several dozen people who drowned in the rescue operation.

“It was very moving,” she said.

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.

Friday, September 28, 2018

From Ian:

Israel: IAEA was told Iran site had ‘forbidden nuclear material,’ yet didn’t act
Israel told the United States and the International Atomic Energy Agency about the existence and contents of the previously unknown Iranian nuclear site whose presence was publicly revealed at the UN Thursday by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, but the atomic watchdog failed to act on the information, a senior Israeli official said.

According to the unnamed official, quoted Friday by Israel’s Channel 10 news, the “secret atomic warehouse” revealed by Netanyahu contained nuclear materials that Iran is not allowed to hold without declaring them to the IAEA. Yet the IAEA knew nothing about the site, the official said, and still failed to act when Israel informed both the IAEA and the US administration about it.

The official added that Israel knows exactly what was being stored at the facility after it was uncovered by the Mossad spy agency a few months ago, from which time the Israeli secret service kept the location under surveillance.

When the IAEA failed to act, the Israeli government apparently agonized over what to do with the information, and decided after discussions in the Prime Minister’s Office that Netanyahu would reveal it in his annual speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday in an attempt to goad the IAEA into taking action.

“There was no choice but to reveal this information, because the goal is to prompt the IAEA to take action,” the senior official said. “We wanted to wake up the world and pressure the IAEA to act against the suspected facilities in Iran.”

Channel 10 reported that the senior official revealed that the nuclear facility is under the supervision of a secret Iranian defense ministry department headed by Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, named by Netanyahu in his April presentation of the seized nuclear archive as the Iranian physicist who heads the country’s nuclear program.

“Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh,” urged Netanyahu in April, showcasing the material that he said proved conclusively that Iran has lied when it says it has not sought nuclear weapons and that the 2015 nuclear deal was built upon “Iranian deception.”
Haley tells PM that Palestinians should complain to Abbas, not Israel
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Friday the Palestinian people should complain to their own leader and not to Israel, and urged Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to resume peace negotiations with Israel.

“We believe that the Palestinians are going to have come to the table. President Abbas is not helping the Palestinian people at all. He hasn’t acknowledged Hamas,” Haley said at a meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Haley said she had no plans to meet with Abbas while he is in New York, where he addressed the UN General Assembly on Thursday.

“The Palestinians, if they want to blame anyone, it shouldn’t be Israel,” the ambassador said. “They should be looking at President Abbas and saying, what are you doing for us?”

Speaking to the press before their bilateral meeting, Netanyahu thanked Haley for her staunch support of Israel at various UN agencies.

“With you, it’s better,” he said, after Haley asked him how things are going, referring to her strong pro-Israel stance at the world body, which has long been anti-Israel.

Wiesenthal Center: Don't allow terror-linked group to visit
The Wiesenthal Center has called on governments in the Americas scheduled to host a 10-member delegation from an Islamic political organization to cancel the programs and deny entry to its members, citing their terrorist ties.

Abdur Razzaq, deputy secretary-general of the the Jamaat-e-Islami, is scheduled to lead the Salafist group starting Oct. 9 in Washington, D.C., to meet with political leaders.

The Wiesenthal Center pointed out that Jamaat-e-Islami is linked to the Taliban, al-Qaida and ISIS.

In Washington, the delegation will meet with Democratic Congress members and think tanks close to Hillary Clinton and former US President Barack Obama.

On Thursday, the director of international relations for the Wiesenthal Center, Shimon Samuels, and the group’s Latin America representative based in Buenos Aires, Ariel Gelblung, requested the intervention of the Organization of American States and its secretary-general, Luis Almagro, to alert authorities from the host nations to the group’s violent background and terror ties.

The Wiesenthal Center called on the governments to deny the delegation’s entry at their borders.

Overcoming Strategic Deficits in the 1948 Israeli War for Independence
Creating Future Victories

Israeli leaders learned from the experience of 1948 and formed four principles for their national defense strategy. First was the rapid penetration of enemy forces. Defensive operations to preserve the status quo were “judged either impossible or too risky.”[82] Israeli Defense Force leaders realized preemptive strikes and rapid counter-attacks could achieve the dual purposes of removing immediate threats from the domestic population while increasing the threat to the enemy.[83] Second, Israel needed to destroy major portions of its rivals’ military assets to help maintain Israeli superiority in arms as there would be no time to build up equipment once the next conflict broke out. Third, the potential exchange of the Galilee for the Negev showed seized territory could be used to advantage at the negotiation table. Finally, Israel understood the important role the international community played in its survival as well as the role it played in controlling ceasefires and negotiations. Future wars must be swift and achieve reasonable gains before the intervention of outside powers limited Israeli options.[84]

The battle-worn Jewish nation began immediate preparations in 1949 for the next round of fighting. The success of the Israeli Defense Force as an homogenizing agent meant it would remain the “bottleneck through which almost all Israeli citizens” would pass.[85] Israel finalized its military reorganization by structuring the force on the Swiss three-tier army model consisting of a standing army of conscripts, a mass of reserves to mobilize in war, and a cohort of permanent military leaders and intelligence services to provide early warnings. At great expense to the young state, Israel held three large-scale mobilization exercises in 1950 and 1951 to ensure the system worked.[86]

Israel’s success in overcoming its imbalances in 1948 provides important lessons for the development of national strategy. Israel’s victory demonstrates how capable leadership can unite competing interests to create a professional military in a short period of time, how diplomatic and military efforts can complement each other, and how military principles such as mass and space can be manipulated. The 1948 war also helps the observer understand Israel’s strategic thinking in later conflicts and highlights the importance and possibilities of military organizational reform.

Out of various scattered militias and immigrant communities, Israel created a professional military capable of fighting multiple foreign armies. From a population outnumbered 1 to 67, it created localized mass by deploying larger forces against weaker, divided enemies. Finally, in an indefensible geographic territory, Israel created artificial space through excellent planning, offensive aggression, and an unwillingness to retreat at great expense to its population. Israel’s ability to overcome its three strategic deficits led to its survival and recognition as a nation. Its victory was no “miracle”, but a “reflection of the underlying Arab-Israeli military balance.”[87] Through analysis and preparation, Israel shifted a seemingly impossible military balance in its favor to earn its independence.
NGO Monitor: Political Advocacy NGO Involvement in UN Humanitarian Aid Clusters
Advocacy within Humanitarian Clusters

The following examples demonstrate the political advocacy, and not necessarily humanitarian work, of the various clusters that are led by a narrow group of secretly selected NGOs.
  • In August 2014, the Protection Cluster relied on B’Tselem, Al Mezan, and Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) for reporting on Palestinian casualties in Gaza during the 2014 Gaza war. Much, if not all, claims were based upon those of the Hamas Ministry of Health. Former and current senior PCHR officials have ties to the PFLP.
  • Connie Martinez-Varela Pedersen is the current Cluster Coordinator for the Protection Cluster and a Human Rights Officer at OHCHR. Pedersen previously worked as the director of international advocacy for the politicized Israeli NGO Yesh Din.
  • Since 2013, under the “oPt Education Cluster,” UNICEF has partnered with Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) in providing “protective presence” to Palestinian children going to and from school. EAPPI brings volunteers to the West Bank for three months to “witness life under occupation.” Upon completion of the program, the volunteers return to their home countries and churches where many engage in anti-Israel advocacy, including advocating for BDS campaigns in churches, comparing Israel to apartheid South Africa and Nazi Germany, and other delegitimization strategies.
  • The “Shelter Cluster Palestine” is run by a Strategic Advisory Group (SAG) controlled by the Palestinian Authority. As of December 2017, members of this group include Ma’an, Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees (PARC), Palestinian Housing Council (PHC), Ministry of Social Development (MoSD) of the Palestinian Authority, OCHA, and UNRWA (as observers).
  • The Health Cluster specifically outlines its advocacy strategy under the 2017 HRP, stating that “The cluster will also advocate for the right to health for Palestinians in the oPt through evidence-based advocacy with duty-bearers concerning their legal obligations under International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law, especially regarding barriers to access to health services, through research, training, reports and direct advocacy with international and national actors.”
J.K. Rowling and the darkness on the left
Knight appears in J.K. Rowling’s latest crime novel, Lethal White. I don’t want to overplay its political message: Rowling is too good a writer to stop her story and advance to the front of the stage and deliver a homily in a pious voice. Like so many others, I enjoy her Cormoran Strike series for the conventional reason that she combines intricate murder mysteries with a thwarted romance between her private detective and his assistant: a drama of missed opportunities and repressed emotions that could only be British.

But Rowling’s stories succeed because they are also state-of-the-nation novels, which convey the landscapes and tensions of Britain with more authenticity than many ‘serious’ writers manage. Lethal White is set in 2012, and shows the type of activist who was about to take over the Labour party.

At that time, you could have heard Knight’s sneers at Amnesty International and the Socialist Workers Party, who told women who warned them against allying with supporters of the Taliban’s lethal misogyny that the cause of protesting against Guantanamo Bay or defeating American imperialism overrode all others. Anyone who said otherwise was on the side of US, if they were a white westerner, or a ‘native informant’ if they were not.

You can hear the sneers again today from leftists who condemn as transphobes feminists who say that trans people with penises should not be permitted to endanger female safety by being allowed in women-only spaces .

As for maintaining that ‘Israel is the root of all evil’ – far from being a handicap, a belief in the anti-Semitic conspiracy theory qualifies you for the leadership of the Labour party.
The Logic of the West’s New Anti-Semitism Crisis
While the rising tide of anti-Semitism on the European left is most evident in the British Labor party, whose leader, Jeremy Corbyn, is an Israel-hater in the old Soviet mold, it is apparent elsewhere in Western Europe as well. Furthermore, writes Alex Joffe, there are disturbing signs that the U.S. is not so far behind. Joffe asks why it is that these hostile attitudes toward Jews and the Jewish state, long present on the fringes of the left, are now moving to the center:

Coupled with the burgeoning of racialized identity politics and “intersectionality”—localized versions of Third Worldism and the “red-green alliance” [between socialists and] Islamists—traditional anti-Semitism has been updated. Jews are suddenly called upon to [make a familiar false choice]: reject their identity and join the vanguard, or become an enemy of the people. . . .

Another explanation for the current explosion of deep-seated anti-Semitism is [that] Jews are simultaneously the most assimilated Western minority and the one that remains demonstrably—even uniquely—grateful to host nations and to the idea of the nation-state and its opportunities. This is intolerable to left-wing positions that reject the nation-state, national identity, and national pride. Jewish attachment to Israel compounds the transgression against post-nationalism, and this connection to a unique and cosmic evil positions the attitude firmly as old-new anti-Semitism. . . .

This sort of reasoning generally appeals most to members of the educated elite, but they have given license to popular outbreaks of what might be called middle-class anti-Semitism, expressed most vividly by hundreds if not thousands of British Labor-party members. A sudden eruption of mostly traditional anti-Semitism from the public was waiting for its moment, with oddly familiar rhetoric: Jews as disloyal, greedy, alien, clannish, manipulative, and conspiratorial. This is merely 19th-century anti-Semitism updated, no longer theological but not yet racial.
Help expose radical Islamist Linda Sarsour

Entertainment Industry Group Works to Thwart the Cultural Efforts of BDS
While CCFP believes in coexistence and using art “as a tool to bring people together,” according to Renzer, the BDS movement uses “misinformation and preying on artists’ natural empathy for the downtrodden to politicize art and keep people apart in order to further their anti-Israel agenda.”

The general consensus is that the BDS movement is not interested in making peace, but causing friction and greater divides between people. Nowhere in the BDS movement’s rhetoric does it talk about Israelis and Palestinians living together in peace, pointed out Miller. Instead, the campaign focuses on vilifying Israel as oppressors and land occupiers. Miller said CCFP’s message is quite the opposite: “Let’s find common ground. Let’s build bridges not boycotts.”

The BDS movement puts a heavy emphasis on attacking Israel’s cultural endeavors, and founder Omar Barghouti told the The Hollywood Reporter that calling on artists to boycott shows in Israel is “one of the most critical aspects of the BDS movement for Palestinian rights.” He claimed Israel uses culture “to cover up its decades-old regime of occupation and apartheid,” and he called culture a “central weapon in Israel’s propaganda arsenal.”

But Miller explained that the BDS movement has “no business” even getting involved in Israel’s cultural activities. Culture should “transcend anything that’s relevant to politics,” she insisted.

Miller urged people not to be silent about their support for the Jewish state. She said that CCFP does not attack BDS activists; rather the organization focuses on defending and countering the negativity.

The next major cultural event set to take place in Israel is the 2019 Eurovision song contest, which Israeli singer Netta Barzilai won this year with her catchy hit song “Toy.” Israel confirmed earlier in September that the competition will be held in Tel Aviv.

Miller expects BDS supporters to make a commotion about it.
Federal court blocks Arizona's anti-BDS law
A federal court blocked an Arizona law requiring state contractors to certify that they will not boycott Israel, finding that the law likely violates state contractors’ free speech rights.

In Thursday’s order blocking the law, District Court Judge Diane J. Humetewa wrote: “A restriction of one’s ability to participate in collective calls to oppose Israel unquestionably burdens the protected expression of companies wishing to engage in such a boycott.”

She also said that the law interferes with First Amendment rights, the news site reported.

Collective action “targeted by the [law] specifically implicates the rights of assembly and association that Americans and Arizonans use ‘to bring about political, social, and economic change,’” Humetewa added.

The law, enacted in March 2016, requires that any company that contracts with state or local government in Arizona submit a written certification that it is not currently boycotting Israel and will not do so. The Arizona law is similar to legislation passed in other states. Earlier this year, a federal court blocked a comparable Kansas law, which the Kansas Legislature subsequently amended.

The American Civil Liberties Union, or ACLU, filed a case challenging the Arizona law on behalf of an attorney, Mikkel Jordahl, and his one-person law office, which contracts with the government to provide legal services to incarcerated individuals. Jordahl has had a state contract to provide legal advice to inmates in Coconino County Jail for 12 years.
Amid Anti-Israel Controversy, U. Michigan Faculty Urge Professors to Place Student ‘Merit’ Over Politics, but Concerns Persist
An executive faculty body at the University of Michigan on Monday urged professors to base their letters of recommendations on “student’s merit,” after a professor refused to write one due to his support for academic boycotts of Israel.

The Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs (SACUA) — a nine-member branch of the school’s faculty governing system — unanimously approved the statement in an apparent rebuke of John Cheney-Lippold, a digital studies professor who recently rescinded an offer to recommend a student after learning she sought to study abroad in Tel Aviv.

In affirming its opposition to such conduct, SACUA pointed to the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), whose guidelines call on professors to “avoid any exploitation, harassment, or discriminatory treatment of students,” and to “encourage the free pursuit of learning in their students.”

Per these directives by the AAUP — which has in the past rejected academic boycotts, including of Israel — “faculty should let a student’s merit be the primary guide for determining how and whether to provide such a letter,” the SACUA resolution noted.

Both the university and its president, Mark Schlissel, reiterated their condemnation of academic boycotts targeting Israel last week, while a school regent denounced Cheney-Lippold’s “antisemitic” behavior.
IsraellyCool: Anti-Zionists-Not-Antisemites of the Day: ‘People of The World United For Palestine’
Those behind the Facebook page People of the World United for Palestine would like us all to know they are ok with Jews, just not Zionists.

Either they’ve changed their tune in a mere 3 hours, or are not counting on people like me paying close attention.

Besides the clear hatred of Jews implicit in the mockery of the “God’s chosen people” concept, note the smiley face Emoji they use while posting this photo of IDF soldiers clearly crying over a fallen comrade.
More to a BBC Radio 4 item on ‘morality’ of aid to Palestinians than meets the eye
Given that the BBC’s coverage of the topic of the US decision to cut donations to UNRWA and other projects has been uniformly superficial, it would be easy to dismiss this item as more of the same.

Yet again BBC audiences were denied information concerning UNRWA’s problematic record and were given no insight into the background to its politically motivated perpetuation of the refugee issue. Yet again BBC audiences heard no discussion of why citizens of the Gaza Strip and PA controlled areas are classified as refugees and deliberately kept dependent on foreign aid.

However, in this item Radio 4 listeners heard more than an academic discussion. They heard a significant contribution from the “head of marketing and fundraising” at an NGO that is raising money for this particular cause – a cause that was repeatedly portrayed to the Sunday morning audience as the right “moral” choice.

Obviously it would therefore have been appropriate for Edward Stourton to have explained to BBC Radio 4 audiences listening to this item why a PR firm that describes ‘Embrace the Middle East’ as one of its clients claims to have been involved in the item’s production – and what that entailed.
Star Columnist Linda McQuaig Claims Pro-Israel Lobby Tail Wags Canadian Political Dog
What exactly is Linda McQuaig saying when she tacitly claims the “pro-Israel lobby” tail wags the Canadian political dog? This claim was made in the following September 27 Toronto Star column that she authored entitled: “Reactions to anti-Muslim video highlight political double standard”.

Substitute the word “Israel” with “Jewish” and you have a classic antisemitic Jewish conspiracy theory and trope which outrageously claims that a cabal of powerful Jews control government and as McQuaig argues, “political discourse” in our country.

Canada’s Ottawa Protocol on Combatting Antisemitism asserts the following: “Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective – such as, especially but not exclusively – the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy, or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.”

Furthermore, when Dimitri Lascaris (Chairman of Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East, CJPME) accused Jewish M.P.’s Anthony Housefather and Michael Levitt of being more loyal to Israel than Canada, Lascaris shamefully engaged in antisemitism.

This allegation, which was rightly condemned by the leaders of all federal parties, is antisemitic according to the Protocol and the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism.
BBC News website’s groundless speculations still online
Readers of an article published on the BBC News website on September 19th under the title “Mustafa Badreddine Street sparks outrage in Lebanon” found an economical description of the death of the person described as “a late military commander of the Hezbollah movement”:

“Badreddine – who was designated a terrorist by the United States – was killed in 2016 in Syria, where he was believed to have led Hezbollah units fighting in support of President Bashar al-Assad.”

The article included a link to the obituary for Badreddine published by the BBC News website in May 2016 and readers who bothered to follow it would have read that:

“Mustafa Amine Badreddine, who has been killed in Syria, was a top Hezbollah military commander.

He was killed by jihadist artillery fire on a Hezbollah base near Damascus airport, the group said. […]

His death was initially blamed on Israel, Hezbollah’s chief enemy.

But Hezbollah later said its commander had been killed in a bombardment carried out by Sunni extremists. It has not named any of the groups.”

Any member of the BBC’s audience searching online for more information on the circumstances of Badreddine’s death in 2016 would, however, be likely to have come across BBC reports presenting conflicting information.
BBC’s ME editor continues his ‘Bedouin village’ narrative – part one
Bowen closed his report with amplification of the notion that the relocation of squatters from an illegally constructed encampment on land to which they have no claim is a “war crime”.

Bowen: “Down the desert road from Jerusalem the big issues of the conflict are in play. The UN and the Red Cross say forcing the people of Khan al Ahmar out of their village would be a war crime. But at the heart of this are families losing homes, children losing their school and pain for yet another generation.”

Notably the BBC’s Middle East editor – whose job it is to “make a complex story more comprehensive or comprehensible for the audience” – chose yet again not to tell the BBC’s funding public that the EU has also carried out illegal construction at Khan al Ahmar and other sites in the vicinity or that the Palestinian Authority and various NGOs have for years used the encampment’s residents as political pawns.

To do so would of course hamper the narrative to which Jeremy Bowen has self-conscripted and which he elected to promote in this report as well as subsequent ones which will be discussed in part two of this post.
BBC’s ME editor continues his ‘Bedouin village’ narrative – part two
With apparently nothing to say about Erekat’s barely veiled threats or the Palestinian education system which teaches glorification of terrorism and negates Israel, Bowen closed his report.

Bowen: “The row over Khan al Ahmar touches the big issues of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. But it’s also about families who most likely will lose their homes, children who will lose their school and a community that might be dispersed. This conflict has caused great suffering across generations and it seems that more will soon be inflicted on the people of Khan al Ahmar.”

Once again Bowen deliberately refrained from informing listeners that if the residents of Khan al Ahmar had not been exploited by the Palestinian Authority for entirely political purposes they could, like other members of their tribe, have relocated to a site nearby offering free plots of land, utilities and a school, with no need whatsoever for the community to ‘suffer’. Those facts, however, do not help advance the political narrative to which Jeremy Bowen has self-conscripted and so in these three radio items – just as in his previous filmed and audio reports – they were erased from the one-sided and politicised picture he presented.
The Mideast Beast Presents the Fill-in-the-Blank Israeli-Palestinian Conflict News Template (satire)
Are you a reporter who finds reporting the news on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict incredibly tedious and unvaried? Does it seem like every news story you write sounds the same, offering little-to-no varied perspective or alternative context? Fortunately for you, our idiot brilliant writers at The Mideast Beast (TMB) have created a template so you can take your reporting to even lazier and shallower levels! Just fill in the blanks and you can report on anything!

Date Line: Jerusalem, Israel or Al-Quds, Occupied Palestine (Depending on which side you secretly want to win).

Israel has been criticized by the UN for ______ a Palestinian _______.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has defended Israel’s _____ of Palestinian ______ explaining that they were legitimate targets in Israel’s fight against _______. “My friends, Israel should never have to fear Palestinian ______. Israel’s right to ______ itself is unquestionable. If Palestinians don’t _____, we won’t ______ them.”

Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas told the international community that Israel’s ______ of Palestinian _______ goes against international ______ law and should be _________ by the international community. We will continue to fight against Zionist ______, but we are committed to peace.

The United States once again affirmed Israel’s right to ________, while France affirmed the Palestinian right to ______.
Polish synagogue’s alleged attacker under psychiatric evaluation
A man who was arrested for allegedly hurling a rock into a Polish synagogue on Yom Kippur in Gdansk recently also assaulted a church and is undergoing psychiatric evaluation, local Jews said.

Officials handling the investigation of the Sept. 19 incident gave this information this week to Michal Samet, the head of the Jewish Religious Community in Gdansk, he told JTA Friday.

“I think it’s being handled correctly,” Samet said. The suspect, whose name has not been published as per Polish laws on privacy, assaulted the Catholic church in recent weeks, Samet said, citing information given to him by police. The man was arrested last week in a town near Gdansk.

“That said, the suspect did try to conceal his identity, he changed his hairstyle after the attack so he could not be easily identified through security cameras, so he’s not completely stupid,” Samet said. Still, he said local Jews have “great confidence” in police, who showed up on the scene within minutes of the report of the attack “and great to great lengths to identify the culprit,” he said.

The incident led to an outpouring of sympathy and interest by non-Jewish locals in Gdansk’s tiny Jewish community of fewer than 200 people. Its website registered half a million entries in just two days and emails and letters expressing support reached it from across Poland.
Danish committee OKs draft call to ban circumcision
A parliamentary committee in Denmark cleared the path for a nonbinding vote on a petition that calls for banning nonmedical circumcision of boys for humanitarian reasons.

The Folketingets Administration said Thursday that the text of the petition presented no constitutional obstacles.

A vote could be held before November, according to Lena Nyhus, an activist for the ban and an initiator of the petition.

The petition by the group Denmark Intact crossed the 50,000 mark in June, four months after its launch, Danmarks Radio reported. According to regulations passed in January, petitions approved for posting on the Danish parliament’s website are brought to a vote as nonbinding motions if they receive that level of support within six months and unless they are deemed unconstitutional.

Petitions that make the signature threshold are read out as resolutions, requiring the government to take no actions whether they pass or fail. Still, a vote in a major European parliament on whether circumcision should be banned would be a precedent in Europe after World War II, when the Nazis imposed and introduced anti-Semitic legislation and practices in many countries they occupied.

Jews circumcise males when they are 8 days old. Muslims perform the practice at a later age, but rarely after the boy turns 13.
India’s Flipkart to acquire Israeli retail analytics startup Upstream Commerce
Indian Electronic retailer Flipkart Internet Private Ltd. is acquiring Israel-based retail analytics provider Upstream Commerce Inc., the companies announced Tuesday. Financial terms were not disclosed, but one person familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity valued the deal at $40 million to $50 million.

Founded in 2010, Upstream is based in both Tel Aviv and New York. The company offers online retailers a pricing and product analytics service.

Flipkart, founded in 2007 and headquartered in Bengaluru, India, is the country’s e-commerce leader, with over 100 million registered users, over 100,000 sellers and over 80 million products on offer. The company reported revenues of $3.07 billion for the fiscal year ended March 2017. In August, Walmart completed its $16 billion acquisition of a 77% stake in Flipkart.

Upstream raised around $6 million in total equity to date. Investors including Israeli venture capital firm YL Ventures, Moscow-based Bright Capital, and Los Gatos, California-based Webb Investment Network.

Upstream’s team will continue to operate from Israel, according to the announcement by the companies.
IDF Blog: IDF Holds Tech Expo
The State of Israel is known for its technological advancements and is often referred to as the “Start-up Nation.” The IDF is no exception and is constantly developing something new.

In honor of its 70th anniversary, the IDF is putting its technological history on display for a week. The expo is open to the public and will feature not just technological milestones from the past, but also new developments that will be in use soon. There’s also a tunnel that allows visitors to “travel in time,” and see the history of the IDF in the air, at sea, and on land. Some of the exhibits are interactive including robotics, a flight simulator, boat training, and a parachuting simulator.

The technology on display isn’t the only draw to this expo. The Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Gadi Eisenkot spoke about the IDF’s operational capabilities and its current activity.

"On the technological spectrum the IDF stands as one of the world's leading militaries. Its operational and technological strength, which is displayed in the exhibition, reflects extensive activities in the deployment of forces, activities which are done with professionalism to prevent our enemies from having advanced abilities that would threaten the State of Israel," said Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot.

So, what’s on display?

There’s the Merkava Eitan armored personnel carrier (APC). This APC can go up to 55.9 mph and weighs up to 35 tons. It’s currently the world’s only APC to run on wheels rather than on continuous tracks, which look like a conveyor belt, making it extremely fast, lightweight, and highly sophisticated. While the tank itself was developed in 2016, it won’t be put into operational use until 2020.

This advanced weapons system, known as the Mini-Typhoon, is designed to be used on most of the Israeli Navy’s vessels. The Mini-Typhoon, a lightweight, remotely operated machine gun system, is controlled by a naval combat soldier who operates it remotely. It even has engine stabilizing engines that allow the cannon to shoot accurately and stay stable. The system was developed and manufactured in Israel and has been operational since 2008.
Israel’s All-Terrain EZRaiders Latest Law Enforcement Rage
The EZRaider is presented by its maker, Israeli startup company DSRaider, as a breakthrough vehicle in a new category all by itself in all-terrain riding, allowing the user complete control with minimum training. Its simple and unique design makes the EZRaider—or its more serious version, the SDRaider—an effective vehicle for military, paramilitary, homeland security, and rescue applications. So far, the new vehicle’s most enthusiastic clients have been police forces in Europe and the US, as well as Israel’s Border Guard.

Israel Police this year has been purchasing the four-wheel tactical electric vehicles, to carry fighters and equipment in difficult terrain, including electric carts that can be attached to the vehicles. The DSRaiders have been used recently by Border Guard officers operating alongside the Gaza Strip, who have been consistently the first to reach incendiary kites and balloons launched from behind the border fence into Israeli territory.

“The high reliability of the vehicle and the simplicity of maintenance significantly reduce maintenance costs, and the ease of operation minimizes the need to invest resources over time,” Brig. Gen. (res.) Miki Bar, the company’s CEO, told Israel Defense. “The high carrying capacity can be extended in a modular fashion by connecting the vehicle to the cart, which is unique in the sense that it can be both electric and non-electric. In the electric configuration, the cart does not slow down the vehicle and allows it to carry considerably high weights.”

Bar expects the DSRaiders to be widely adopted for infantry maneuvers, ground and airborne operations, critical infrastructure security, firefighting operations, and public security.
Israeli TV show nominated for International Emmy Award
An Israeli TV show about an interracial family was nominated on Thursday for an International Emmy Award.

The Reshet comedy Nevsu, which was first broadcast in 2017, was nominated in the comedy category. The show will be competing against comedies from Mexico, Spain and Canada.

Nevsu, which is an Amharic slang world for sweetheart, focuses on the marriage of Gili, an Israeli man of Ethiopian descent and Tamar, an Ashkenazi woman - and their corresponding families.

Last year, Fox announced it was remaking the series for US audiences and titling it Culture Clash. While a pilot for the show was filmed, it was ultimately not picked up by the network.

While Nevsu was the only Israeli nominee on Thursday, it was not the only Israel-inspired one.

The Dutch production Etgar Keret: Based on a True Story, was recognized in the arts programming category. The 2017 film was a hybrid documentary of the Israeli writer's life, and his stories, which appear in animated versions sprinkled throughout the film.
JPost Editorial Israel’s Christian friends
The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ) is hosting more than 5,000 pilgrims from 85 countries for its annual Feast of Tabernacles celebration, which coincides with the week-long Jewish festival of Sukkot.

“Feast attendance has been on the rise in recent years, which is a reflection of the dramatic growth of the Christian Zionist movement worldwide,” says ICEJ spokesman David Parsons. “Our Feast pilgrims are especially excited to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Israel’s rebirth as a nation, as well as the nations’ starting to return their embassies to Jerusalem.”

The highlight of the colorful festival is being marked this afternoon, when ICEJ national delegations waving their countries’ flags assemble at the northern end of Jerusalem’s Sacher Park and join dozens of groups from Israel in the traditional Jerusalem March. Then tonight, more than 1,000 Israelis are scheduled to join the pilgrims for a gala cultural and musical program at the Pais Arena featuring artists, choirs and performers from across the globe. According to the ICEJ, the program will comprise “a celebration of Israel’s 70th anniversary of modern statehood, as well as the moving of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem” on May 14, and a special tribute to Senator John Kyl, the initiator of the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995.

After Sukkot, the pilgrims will pay a solidarity visit to Israel’s border with Gaza, where they will hold a ceremony with community leaders from the Eshkol Region. The ICEJ and its partner, Operation Lifeshield, are being honored for their assistance to Gaza periphery communities, including a donation of six new mobile bomb shelters, 15 all-terrain firefighting trailers and three special ATV security vehicles.
Evangelicals parade through Jerusalem in support of Israel
Thousands of flag-waving evangelical Christians from dozens of countries marched in Jerusalem on Thursday as part of annual religious celebrations that are also a show of support for Israel.

Many evangelicals see Israel's existence as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy, and a pilgrimage to the holy city is auspicious during the festival of Sukkot – a holiday which evangelicals celebrate as the Feast of the Tabernacles – which this year started on Sept. 23 and ends Sept. 30.

Thursday's parade was festooned with Israeli flags, as well as those of the native countries of the marchers, many of whom also wore their traditional national garb.

Israeli police said more than 7,000 people took part in the march which the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, a main organizer of the event, described as an "expression [of] our solidarity with Israel."

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