Tuesday, January 19, 2021

  • Tuesday, January 19, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon


The US embassy in Jerusalem issued this press release yesterday:
The United States Embassy in Jerusalem, together with the United States Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, have recognized the City of David as a testament to America’s Judeo-Christian heritage and founding principles. The archeological discoveries at the City of David bring Biblical Jerusalem back to life and reaffirm the prophetic messages of freedom, justice and peace that inspired America’s founders.

U.S. Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, and Chairman of the Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, Paul Packer, recently attended a special ceremony dedicating a plaque to honor the City of David in recognition of the seminal role it plays in connecting its visitors to the origins of the values that helped shape America..
In response, the Palestinian ministry of foreign affairs plans to sue Ambassador Friedman, who is leaving his post this week.
Foreign Affairs and Expatriates undertakes to legally pursue the settler, Ambassador Friedman

 The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates condemns in the strongest terms the announcement of the American ambassador to the settler occupation state David Friedman regarding his recognition of the settlement project called the City of David, in the middle of occupied Jerusalem, two days before the end of his duties as ambassador to the United States of America, and considers it illegal and invalid. It expresses Friedman's desires and his dark ideology which he is trying to affix not only to the United States of America, but also to the American constitution and principles and employ them in favor of the narrative of the occupation in Jerusalem, saying in a statement issued by the American embassy: "The City of David" is "a testament to the Judeo-Christian heritage and the founding principles of America."

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates will take it upon itself to follow up this issue with legal experts and the concerned authorities to discuss the possibility of holding the settler Friedman accountable before international and specialized courts.
I guess they didn't think they can sue the United States so they want to go after Friedman. Not that they can point to any international laws broken by him by presenting a plaque.

The plaque itself says:

The City of David brings Biblical Jerusalem to life at the very place where the kings and prophets of the Bible walked.  It is the site where internationally acclaimed archeological discoveries have been unearthed, including the Pool of Siloam, the Pilgrimage Road, the Gihon Spring and Hezekiah’s Tunnel.

As the prophet Isaiah said, “Out of Zion shall go forth the law and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.” The spiritual bedrock of our values as a nation comes from Jerusalem. It is upon these ideals that the American Republic was founded, and the unbreakable bond between the United States and Israel was formed.

The City of David serves as a proud reminder of the glorious heritage of the United States of America.

“I REJOICED WITH THOSE WHO SAID TO ME, ‘LET US GO TO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD.’ OUR FEET ARE STANDING IN YOUR GATES, JERUSALEM.”

— PSALM 122:1 – 2




(Based on a Monday Twitter thread)

 

The lies of @btselem are so egregious.

Here are some screenshots from their position paper that pretends to prove that Israel is an apartheid state. Their arguments are not only weak – they are self-contradictory.

Image

Jews cannot travel to Area A. Or Area B. Or Gaza. And severe limitations on the Temple Mount. So by B'Tselem's definition, Jews are the ones under apartheid.

In fact, the only people who can freely travel to all areas of the West Bank and Israel are Arabs in Jerusalem, who have far more freedom of movement than Jews do.

 

Image

If nations giving preference to their own national group over others is apartheid, then most European countries are apartheid. Every Arab country is apartheid. Armenia, Ireland, Japan – all these nations have preferential immigration policies for people who share the ethnicity of the majority of the nation.

Worse, though, is that B'Tselem  ignores why Israel has a Law of Return. it must be nice to think that 2000 years of antisemitism has disappeared, and that Nazi Germany’s Jew-hatred isn't worth remembering anymore, but the Jewish people are a nation and they have been pushed out of many countries over history.

B’Tselem, instead of acknowledging antisemitism, is hell-bent on perpetuating it.

Image

 

If even B'Tselem admits that Israeli Jews and Arabs have the same freedom of movement - in fact, Israeli Arabs have MORE - then where is the apartheid and "Jewish supremacy"?

Answer: Even B’Tselem knows this is a sham. .

 

Image

So Israeli Arabs have full political rights. Doesn’t that completely destroy the entire “apartheid” argument?

There is some racism in Israel. Just like in the rest of the world. If that is apartheid, then the word loses all meaning.

B'Tselem knows this. Their entire argument is hand-waving, and nothing that relates to real apartheid. They want to demonize Israel, not fight for human rights, because they can raise more funds from modern antisemites than anyone else. And when antisemites pay your salary, over the years you tend to agree with them.

Monday, January 18, 2021

  • Monday, January 18, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon

Ma'an quotes Israel's Kan News as saying that the Palestinian Authority will bring five thousand Russian Sputnik COVID-19 vaccines into the territories tomorrow.

Palestinian Authority official Hussein al-Sheikh is visiting Russia now and he will return tomorrow with the vaccine via Jordan, after he obtained approval from Israel to bring the vaccine into the territories. The PA has already approved the Sputnik vaccine for use under emergency regulations. 

Israel is allowing the Russian vaccine - but B'Tselem, Amnesty, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, Gisha and other NGOs are against this happening.

They do not want the Sputnik vaccine - which only require storage at -20C - ostensibly because they don't think Palestinians should have a vaccine that Israel hasn't approved for Israeli citizens.

The Russian vaccine, although not as well tested as others, is approved for use in a number of countries. 

These supposed human rights organizations don't seem to care about human lives when they can choose to use vaccines as a public relations weapon against Israel.

UPDATE: It looks like the vaccines won't arrive until Friday,  they will come through Israel, and the next batch of 100,000 is due in February. 




From Ian:

David Collier: Academia – the epicentre of global antisemitism
The epicentre of global antisemitic activity is – astonishingly – academia. Anti-Zionist, antisemitic academics beget more anti-Zionist, antisemitic academics, all scratching each other’s backs and agreeing with each other.

It is almost impossible to follow a research path on the subject of Israel unless you have spent several years mentored by an Islamist, a Marxist or someone who claims Palestinian heritage. If you show potential as a professional anti-Israel propagandist, or agree to research an area that they choose for your study – your fees may all be covered. Once holding your PhD, you join a club whose members praise each other’s books, sign off each other’s grants – and block access to anything and anyone that does not fit the anti-Israel profile. As a group you actively seek to silence dissent. Hey – you even get to co-sign letters to the Guardian. It is a self-protecting global factory that churns out activists who hold PhDs and who all hate Israel. This isn’t academia, it is taxpayer-funded, Islamist-sponsored, antisemitic, propaganda. This propaganda is the central pillar upon which western antisemitic, anti-Zionism is supported.

In opposition to this, we must stop spending our time putting out fires and begin to address why these fires keep starting and where the fuel for them is all coming from.

Jews on campus – a type of ‘dhimmitude’
Jewish people today on campus can be tolerated, protected or abused. At no point are they treated as equals. The best they can hope for is protection and tolerance in a hostile environment. It is reminiscent of dhimmitude under Islamic rule. On the campus the prevailing wisdom is that their beliefs in Jewish identity are fundamentally wrong.

The Woke doctrine of ‘systemic racism’ holds that Jews are ’white’ and that they are guilty of establishing the ‘settler colonial’ state of Israel. Post-colonial, post-modernist, Marxist thought dominates the universities in which they are ‘permitted’ to study, and they will be tolerated provided that they ‘behave’. In these halls Zionism is a dirty word which is equated with racism.

Jewish students can wave their flags in secret rooms but must not do it where it can provoke. They are offered the protection of being allowed to be wrong within a superior system of thought – or in other words they are second class students. If they are abused, it is far less serious than an offence against someone from the Muslim, BAME or LGBTQ communities. If an academic is responsible for the abuse (see Bristol, Leeds, Warwick) it is the academic who will be protected and the complaining Jewish student who will be victimised – even if the student can prove abuse. Academics fiercely resist the protection for Jewish students that the government is trying to implement. Jewish students that bow down before their masters will be given special favours and status. The best analogy I can find is Dhimmitude.

It has got so bad that there are some universities which are virtually Judenfrei. Why would an openly pro-Israel Jewish student want to go to a University where they will be vilified by other students and victimised by lecturers? What an indictment of the failure to deal with the problem that Jewish students choose a University not by the course content or the quality of teaching – but by the extent of antisemitism that they will encounter.
Guardian anti-Israel editorial evokes antisemitism
On Sunday, the Guardian (via their sister site, the Observer) published an article on a King’s College/YouGov poll – commissioned by Campaign Against Antisemitism – on the attitudes of British Jews, which found that “90% believe that media bias against Israel fuels persecution of Jews in Britain”.

On that same day, the Guardian published an official editorial on the recent B’Tselem report they’ve been promoting which not only accused Israel of apartheid, but characterised it as a “Jewish supremacist” state. Though their coverage up until today uncritically quoted B’Tselem’s “Jewish supremacism” charge, and included an op-ed by the NGO’s director which used that term, this editorial used that term in their own editorial voice:
Israel has a problem of historic discrimination. But under Benjamin Netanyahu’s government there has been the enactment of the nation state law that constitutionally enshrines Jewish supremacy and a plan to formally annex parts of the West Bank.

First, let’s be clear. This has nothing whatsoever to do with Israel’s prime minister, or even the nation state law. Though we’ve refuted Guardian charges that the law enshrines discrimination, our concern is with their editors’ use of a term which suggests the state is intrinsically racist, and which has a clear antisemitic history.

We contacted Community Security Trust (CST), who provided us with the following statement about the use of the term by the Guardian and B’Tselem:
“The meaning and impact of language can vary considerably depending on who is using it, the audience that is hearing or reading it, and the context in which it lands. For this reason, whatever B’Tselem’s intended meaning in Israel regarding the phrase “Jewish supremacy”, they ought to have been cognisant that this phrase has a long-standing antisemitic usage outside Israel, and journalists in the UK, writing for primarily non-Jewish audiences, should be even more mindful of the danger of such wording.”

The danger British Jews feel about such wording, per the CAA poll which the Guardian reported on, is that it demonises not only Israeli specifically, and Zionism more broadly in a manner that’s arguably antisemitic per the IHRA definition, but vilifies Jews qua Jews – insofar as most are (correctly) identified as Zionists.

We’ve complained to the Guardian, and asked that they remove that antisemitic term from their editorial.
Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy alive in Israel
On Monday, the US marks Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday with a national holiday. Celebrated this year on January 18, the event comes less than two weeks after historic violence on Capitol Hill, the symbol of American democracy.

King was only 39 years old in 1968 when an assassin’s bullet ended his life in Memphis, Tennessee, but his legacy as a proponent of nonviolent conflict resolution lives on.

This year, though, a different spirit – one directly affected by the attack on the home of the US legislative bodies – adds a variant to King’s heritage.

“I have also been thinking a lot this past week about Rev. Martin Luther King’s famous ‘I Have a Dream’ speech in Washington, DC, at the [National] Mall, in front of hundreds of thousands of Americans in August 1963, in which he envisioned freedom for all Americans and called for an end to racism,” Rabbi Ron Kronish, the founding director of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel, told The Media Line.

“How relevant this is today when racism is once again tearing America apart, as we witnessed so dramatically during the insurrection incited by US President Donald Trump last week on January 6, at the same place, in America’s capital city,” stated Kronish.

What are the ramifications of these events for Israel and the Middle East?
Continuing my series of recaptioning cartoons...



This is actually not far off from what a UN official said in 2014:

Over the weekend, a custom-tailored-for-Facebook story started making the rounds, claiming that Navi Pillay, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, was blasting Israel for refusing to share the Iron Dome missile defense system with Hamas. It was just the kind of hilariously delicious absurdity that could be expected of the same organization that will soon welcome Chad—where slavery is still a rollicking tradition—into its Security Council, but the ever zealous guardians of Israel’s minor infractions and little else soon declared that Pillay was being slandered: she never called on Israel to share its defensive bounties, but rather criticized the United States for helping to fund the advanced system and noted that “no such protection has been provided to Gazans against the shelling.”




  • Monday, January 18, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
One of the implications about the sustained campaign to make Israel responsible for vaccinating Palestinians is that Palestinians do not have the ability to make their own medical decisions.

Even though they have insisted from the start that they can take care of their own people, even though they have undertaken their own negotiations with pharmaceutical companies and decided which vaccines they want, even though they have a fairly mature medical infrastructure in the West Bank, the critics of Israel are saying that the Palestinians are helpless children who cannot be trusted to safeguard their own lives as the wise Western NGOs are. 

Isn't that bigoted?

Sometimes, though, the West treating Palestinians like children encourages them to act like children.

The EU issued this statement when the Palestinian Authority announced elections this May:

On Friday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas enacted a decree-law on holding legislative, presidential and National Council elections in the coming months starting with legislative elections on 22 May.

This is a welcome development as participative, representative and accountable democratic institutions are key for Palestinian self-determination and state-building.

The EU has in the past years consistently supported and funded the work of the Central Elections Commission in order to prepare for holding free, fair and inclusive elections for all Palestinians. 
Palestinians haven't had elections for 15 years. Since then, the EU has been funding support of nonexistent elections. 

The EU even built the Central Elections Commission headquarters, spending €5 million on it.




Has this EU encouragement and funding made the Palestinians any more democratic? (Odds are that the scheduled election will never takes place.)

Or is the EU patronizingly telling the Palestinians, "Let us grown-ups explain to you what democracy is. Here, we'll give you a building and send consultants and election monitors and give lectures so you will know."

Can anyone imagine outside governments "helping" Israel in its first elections?

Eight months after independence, Israel took a census, prepared a thousand polling places, registered voters and held the elections. All without outside help. Most of this during a war. 

If Palestinians want democracy, they can do it without help. If they want vaccines, they can get them without help. If they choose terror or if they choose peace, it will be their decision. 

The people who are telling them that they cannot make their own decisions are interfering with their autonomy - not "occupation."

(h/t Irene)




From Ian:

David Singer: Trump's Middle East solution will sink into oblivion
Trump’s Peace Plan was rejected by PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on 5 February 2020:
“They told me Trump wants to send me the deal of the century to read, I said I would not,” Abbas told the meeting of Arab League foreign ministers.

“Trump asked that I speak to him over the phone, so I said ‘no’, and that he wants to send me a letter, so I refused to receive it.”

On 9 February 2020 - US Ambassador to Israel – David Friedman – affirmed:
“The process [preparing a detailed map – ed] will not last very long, but we want to go through a process… We’re going to go through a mapping process to convert a map which is drawn of more than a million to one into something which really shows on the ground how the territory will be put together.

"It’s not unduly difficult, but it’s also not simple, because there are a lot of judgment calls. We don’t want to do this piecemeal …

"We want to do it once, holistically, in totality, and get it done right. We just want to get it done right. That’s not too much to ask. And that was the president’s message when he spoke about it the first time.”

On 15 February 2020 - the three US members of a joint US-Israel committee to join Israel’s three nominees in translating Trump’s conceptual plans into two defined territorial entities were announced (Mapping Committee).

Eleven months later the Mapping Committee’s map remains under tight wraps. No reasons have been given for the Committee’s failure to publish.

Failing to release the Mapping Committee’s detailed map before 20 January setting out defined borders to facilitate future Israel-PLO negotiations – should they ever be resumed - will see Trump’s two-state solution sink into political oblivion.

President Trump’s opportunity to finally end the 100 years-old unresolved Jewish-Arab conflict will then become just a footnote in history – joining the failed attempts of his Presidential predecessors.


Commentary Magazine Podcast: Trump’s Gift to Biden
Hosted by Abe Greenwald, Christine Rosen, John Podhoretz, Noah Rothman Bret Stephens, newly minted COMMENTARY contributing editor, joins the podcast today to discuss his blockbuster article, “Memo to President Biden: Please Don’t Mess Up the Abraham Accords.




Col. Richard Kemp on 30th Anniversary of 1991 Gulf War
  • Monday, January 18, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
The Antisemitism Barometer 2020, which was commissioned by the UK-based Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA), was just released.

Some of the specific responses to the questions look absolutely frightening.


While those who agreed with the antisemitic statement that Jews have too much power in the media went down from the 2019 survey from 14% to 11%, those who disagree went down more - from a majority of 54% to a minority of 42%. That is a very bad trend.

A similar pattern is seen on this question of Jews chasing money:


The number of explicit antisemites went down, but the number who oppose the antisemitic statement went down even further - from 54% to 41%, a huge drop in one year.

Another example where the extremist antisemites are decreasing but the moderate antisemites are increasing:

The number who are comfortable around Zionists plummeted from an already-low 41% to 31%.

And again, when asked if Israel has the right to defend itself from those who want to destroy it - a question that would be so obviously true for every other nation on Earth, but for Israel, the British are worse than ambivalent:

Those who agree went down from 58% to only 50%.

Here's a question where a classic antisemitic trope is re-phrased as an anti-Zionist one:


Only 30% disagree that Zionists control the media - in the land of The Guardian and the BBC.

Perhaps the most shocking result is this one, where only 20% of Britons disagree that Israel treats Palestinians as Nazis treated Jews - an absolutely antisemitic statement:


They must have gotten this impression from the Zionist-controlled media.

In a year where antisemitism was a big topic in the UK with the Labour antisemitism scandal, it seems that fewer people are willing to express explicitly antisemitic feelings - but the number of people willing to openly counter antisemitic is plunging.. 

This does not bode well for British Jewry.








  • Monday, January 18, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
Dafna Meir H"YD



Dafna Meir worked as a nurse in the neurosurgery department of Soroka Medical Center in Beesheba. She was also a pre-marital counselor for brides. Dr. Ahmed Nasser, who worked alongside her at the hospital, described her as his "best friend" in the department, always helpful, encouraging everyone, treating all alike, whether Jewish or Arab. Dafna had been studying Arabic, telling Dr. Nasser that "we are neighbors and should speak the same language."

She had four children and two foster children. "She was a happy woman, joyful, optimistic, driven, responsible, loving," related a neighbor. 

On January 17, 2016, Dafna was painting the front door to her home. Her eldest daughter, Renana, heard her scream.  She ran to her aid, only to see a Palestinian terrorist stab her mother repeatedly. Dafna tried to fight off assailant, protecting the three children who were at home at the time. Renana screamed for help, and the terrorist fled. 

Dafna was pronounced dead at the scene.

Her murderer was a 15 year old boy named Morad Bader Abdullah Adais who was caught the next day.

It is now five years later - and Morad Adais is very happy. Because his salary for being a murderer is doubling today.

According to the Palestinian Authority's sliding salary structure for terrorists and murderers, today Adais goes from being paid 2000 shekels a month to 4000.



The average Palestinian worker gets paid about 2500 shekels a month, which means that the now 20-year old Morad Adais makes significantly more money than Palestinians who have to work for a living, who have to pay for their own housing and food. 

The Palestinian leaders say that these payments for terrorists are a sacred part of their budget.

To Palestinians, Morad Adais is a hero who deserves every penny of his lifetime award for repeatedly stabbing a mother who was guilty of the crime of being a Jew.  






  • Monday, January 18, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon



Human Rights Watch belatedly jumped on the bandwagon claiming Israel is responsible for vaccinating Palestinians who are not under Israeli control.

As one might expect, HRW twists international law:

 The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which Israel ratified in 1991 and the State of Palestine acceded to in 2014, requires states to take steps necessary for the “prevention, treatment and control of epidemic, endemic, occupational and other diseases.” 
That sure sounds like the Palestinians have the primary responsibility, doesn't it? But HRW adds:

The United Nations body responsible for monitoring this treaty has confirmed that Israel is obliged to respect this treaty in the occupied territory, and to protect the right to health and other rights of the population there.
What does this document say? This is the part HRW doesn't want you to read:
The Committee reminds the State party that it has positive and negative obligations with regard to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, depending on its level of control and the transfer of authority, that it should not raise any obstacle to the exercise of such rights in those fields where competence has been transferred to the Palestinian authorities and that any measures taken by the State party should ensure that the legislative and policy measures relating to the occupied territories taken by the State party as the occupying Power do not result in any permanent alteration in the political or legal status of the territories or have irreparable consequences for the people living there.
It says explicitly that in areas where the Palestinians have control, Israel cannot interfere with their governance without permission. 

That means that Israel must not interfere with Palestinian vaccination plans - unless the Palestinian Authority asks.

Which is entirely consistent with the Geneva Conventions, with the Oslo Accords, and entirely inconsistent with what HRW is claiming!

HRW may have one point: it may be true that Israel is responsible for vaccinating the non-Israeli Palestinians in Area C, even though many of them are illegal squatters. Yet even then, it disgustingly  accuses Israel of racism:
“Nothing can justify today’s reality in parts of the West Bank, where people on one side of the street are receiving vaccines, while those on the other do not, based on whether they’re Jewish or Palestinian,” said Omar Shakir, Israel and Palestine director at Human Rights Watch. “Everyone in the same territory should have equitable access to the vaccine, regardless of their ethnicity.”
This is slander. Israel is not distinguishing between Jews and Arabs. There are thousands of Arabs who live across the Green Line who get full access to Israeli services, including vaccinations. 

Israel is distinguishing between citizens and non-citizens. Which is something every country on Earth does. If a nation doesn't take care of its own citizens ahead of others, it is failing in its most basic function.

The only people who really do distinguish between Jews and non-Jews are the critics of Israel like BDS and Human Rights Watch. Because, you see, they don't consider the Israeli Arabs who live across the Green Line to be "settlers."

Only Jews can be illegal settlers.

When Israel builds houses for Arabs in Jerusalem across the Green Line, Human Rights Watch is silent - even though Israeli Arabs will move there. They only complain when Jews move into those projects or neighborhoods. 

When Israeli Arabs own businesses over the Green Line, their business names are not places on any "blacklists" of "illegal settler businesses." Only Jewish-owned ones are called illegal.

So when HRW accuses Israel of treating Jews better than Arabs, they are projecting their own bigotry onto Israel. Because they are the ones who say that Jews should be treated differently from non-Jews. 




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.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

  • Sunday, January 17, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
In 2014, I made this graphic to show how far off the idea of peace was between Israel and its Arab neighbors.


Muslim Voice for Peace:

We believe in two states for two peoples: Israel for the Jewish people and Palestine for the Palestinian Arab people
We believe that both sides must make compromises for peace
We believe that terrorism is always wrong
We desire a warm peace that includes cultural and trade relations to benefit both our peoples
We are willing to bring our message of true peace to everyone, Muslim and non-Muslim alike

Unfortunately, we don't exist.


The idea of Arabs actually believing these things - none of which are crazy ideas - was so far-fetched as to be ridiculous.

Then, in 2020, the UAE filled every single one of these bullet items! And it is much more impressive to have an entire nation believe these things than a small NGO. 

 (I'm not quite sure if Bahrain meets all of these criteria, although it is close. The jury is still out on Sudan and Morocco.)

I am very happy I can no longer make general statements about "Muslims" and "Arabs" not being interested in real peace with Israel. 






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

As Israel-UAE Ties Deepen, BDS Advocates ‘Give Up’ on Efforts to Boycott Jewish State
Amid expanding ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates following the Abraham Accords, a leading Palestinian BDS organization is giving up on efforts to boycott the Jewish state inside of the Arab Gulf country.

In a statement, the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI)—a member of the Palestinian BDS National Committee—announced that it would “exclude” those residing in the UAE from its call to ban UAE-Israeli economic and diplomatic partnerships.

“The PACBI takes into account the delicate situation of Arab subjects in Arab countries, such as the United Arab Emirates, ruled by tyrannical regimes that have become a hotbed of normalization and betrayal plans and projects in the region,” wrote the BDS group.

Previously, the PACBI had called on Emiratis to boycott several major UAE companies and institutions that had established ties with Israel, including the First Dhabi Bank, Emirates Policy Center and Dubai Expo.

The move by the BDS movement to drop its efforts to boycott Israel in the UAE comes as Arabs in countries that signed the Abraham Accords are showing increasingly positive attitudes towards the Jewish state.

A new report from Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs (MSA) found a substantial decrease in negative posts on Arab social media regarding normalization with Israel in the weeks after the agreements were signed.

According to the MSA, the decline in negative comments towards Israel and normalization was in part due to the public awareness campaigns carried out by the respective governments.
From Pompeo’s Twitter Account, an Understated Policy Statement
Mike Pompeo’s Twitter account has apparently tucked a notable policy statement into an otherwise unremarkable legacy-burnishing tweetstorm — and it has significant implications for U.S. support of Israel at the U.N.

The tweet was just one of the dozens that the secretary of state’s account has fired off every day since the start of 2021 to note his foreign-policy accomplishments as he nears the end of his tenure. It’s generally unremarkable stuff — some old pictures and graphics with snappy, occasionally stilted sloganeering (though more than a few Pompeo critics have seized on it as an opportunity to go after the top Trump official).

But Richard Goldberg, a senior adviser at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, noticed a decision that has otherwise gone unremarked upon: When @SecPompeo shared the 2018 press release announcing the U.S. decision to halt funding to the U.N. Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the post stated that “it’s estimated less than 200,000 Arabs diplaced in 1948 are still alive and most others are not refugees by any rational criteria.”

UNRWA serves Palestinian refugees exclusively — it says that there are 5.8 million of them in Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, and Palestine — and it’s the only organization within the U.N. system that focuses on a specific set of refugees. (All other refugee groups are handled by the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.) It’s a testament to the U.N.’s single-minded obsession with criticizing Israel, holding the Jewish state to a different standard.

But what actually makes someone a refugee? Many have disputed the 5 million number as a gross inflation that purposefully overstates the true refugee population in order to undermine Israel at the U.N. Goldberg, dissecting Pompeo’s statement, takes square aim at a longstanding myth:

UNRWA claims to serve millions of “Palestinian refugees.” These “refugees” are in some cases kept in poverty and hopelessness, told they are waiting for the day when they will return to their rightful homes within modern Israel (to end the Jewish majority of the state). Of course, most people served by UNRWA don’t meet basic criteria for refugee status. Most are either citizens of other countries or live within Palestinian territories. Most were not displaced by conflict. Yet @StateDept has promoted UNRWA’s fiction for decades – with taxpayer $.


So Long, Ambassador David Friedman, and Thanks for All the Fish*
Today we are taking our leave from US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman. I must say that over the years I have met many ambassadors from many countries, including from the US, our great ally, but I can say that there was never a better ambassador than David Friedman in establishing the deep ties between Israel and the US, in correcting the diplomatic injustices that were created over the years in global diplomacy regarding Israel and in establishing the status of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and many other things some of which have yet to be told.

David, I do not know, when you were appointed ambassador, if you knew the mark you would leave behind, but today we all know it. We know that you were very active in bringing about the American recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, itself a correction of an injustice that is difficult to understand.

You not only did his but you acted quickly on the transfer of the American embassy to Jerusalem and on the fact that in American passports it will be written ‘Jerusalem – Israel.’

What could be simpler, what could be more just, than correcting this injustice? This nonsense was corrected after decades due to vigorous action by President Trump and with your encouragement and at your initiative. This is the first thing.

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

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