Wednesday, September 28, 2016

  • Wednesday, September 28, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

Yariv Oppenheimer, former director and current board member of Peace Now, tweeted:



"Obama [attending Peres' funeral] is nice, Clinton [attending it] is wonderful, but the fact that no Arab leader has confirmed his attendance yet shows how Netanyahu managed to make everyone hate Israel and disconnect from the vision of peace."
First of all, there are unconfirmed reports that Egypt's president and Jordan's king will attend.

But even if they don't, for Oppenheimer to blame Bibi is deranged.  He cannot be unaware of the incitement against Israel that is seen daily in the Arab world, and it is not aimed at Netanyahu but at Israel altogether. The PA's refusal to "normalize" with Israel is not because of Netanyahu's policies but because of Israel itself.

And we have seen recently a former Saudi general visit Israel, Israel opening up a diplomatic mission in Abu Dhabi, much warmer relations with Egypt, and only this week a major sale of Israeli gas reserves to Jordan.

All under the government of Binyamin Netanyahu.

The amount of self-delusion in the Israeli Left is something to behold.

The responses to Oppenheimer's tweet are appropriately derisive, saying that Bibi was also responsible for the destruction of the first temple, 9/11, the Holocaust and Justin Bieber.

(h/t Yoel)



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Here's how the New York Times describes the beginning of the second intifada in its obituary for Shimon Peres:

Mr. Peres, Mr. Rabin and Arafat were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994.

But the era of good feelings did not last. It was shattered in 2000 after a visit by the opposition leader Ariel Sharon to the sacred plaza in Jerusalem known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. The next day, the Israeli police fired on stone-throwing protesters, inaugurating a new round of violence that became known as the second intifada.
There are two major problems with this description.

One is that the years after Oslo were filled with terror attacks against Israelis. In fact, 279 Israelis were killed in the five years following the Oslo accords, more than in the 15 years beforehand - including the entire first intifada. That time period saw some of the worst suicide bombings, particularly on buses, that Israel had ever seen.

1994 Dizengoff St bus bombing , 22 killed

The conventional wisdom that Oslo brought peace is one of the worst myths pushed by the media.

The second is that the NYT is blaming Israeli actions on the outbreak of the second intifada. Here is a good description of the events from Ziv Hellman, a former Jerusalem Post editor:
On the morning of September 28, 2000, a six-member Likud Knesset delegation led by the then-leader of the Israeli opposition, Ariel Sharon, paid a visit to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. From the moment the plans for the visit had been made public four days earlier, there was concern among Israeli security officials that the heavily media-covered visit might inflame some Palestinian nationalist sentiments because it would be viewed as a deliberately provocative symbol of Israeli control of all of Jerusalem, east and west.

These concerns prompted consultations on the matter between Israeli and Palestinian officials, culminating in a telephone conversation between Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami and the head of the Palestinian Preventive Security Organization, Jibril Rajoub, in which Rajoub indicated, “If Mr. Sharon refrains from entering the Mosques on Temple Mount, there will not be any problem.” Only then did the Israeli police agree to permit the visit–along with a 1,500 member police escort, just in case.

Sharon’s visit was relatively brief, avoiding the mosques. It was completed by 8:30 a.m. and was followed by a vocal demonstration of about 1,000 Palestinians led by Israeli Arab Knesset members who hurled stones at Israeli policemen. But this too was relatively brief and not unprecedented in the context of previous Palestinian-Israeli clashes in that religiously and emotionally charged area of Jerusalem. By the afternoon, despite sporadic flare-ups of further clashes between police and demonstrators, Israeli security officials concluded that the matter was behind them.

They turned out to be seriously wrong.

Within hours, the Voice of Palestine was broadcasting denunciations. Sharon was said to have conducted “a serious step against Muslim holy places.” Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian Authority chairman, called upon the entire Arab and Islamic world to “move immediately to stop these aggressions and Israeli practices against holy Jerusalem.” Repeated broadcasts throughout the evening and night described the visit as a deliberate defilement of the mosques.

By the morning of September 29, Palestinian public opinion was inflamed in way that Israeli intelligence had failed to predict. In the West Bank town of Qalqilya a Palestinian police officer participating in a joint security patrol with Israeli police opened fire and killed his Israeli counterpart, leading to the permanent suspension of all joint Israeli-Palestinian security patrols. Following Friday morning prayers in the mosques on the Temple Mount, hundreds of Palestinians rushed past Israeli border guards toward the platform overlooking the Western Wall plaza where Jewish worshippers were praying prior to the Rosh Hashanah holiday.

When heavy rocks began raining down from the compound on the Mount onto Jewish worshippers in the plaza below, the Israeli border guard contingent opened fire on the Palestinian rioters with rubber bullets, killing four and wounding more than 100 persons.
There is also convincing evidence that the second intifada was planned by Arafat beforehand. From Wikipedia:
Some have claimed that Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian Authority (PA) had pre-planned the Intifada.[137] They often quote a speech made in December 2000 by Imad Falouji, the PA Communications Minister at the time, where he explains that the Intifada had been planned since Arafat's return from the Camp David Summit in July, far in advance of Sharon's visit.[150] He stated that the Intifada "was carefully planned since the return of (Palestinian President) Yasser Arafat from Camp David negotiations rejecting the U.S. conditions".[151] David Samuels quotes Mamduh Nofal, former military commander of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, who supplies more evidence of pre-28 September military preparations. Nofal recounts that Arafat "told us, Now we are going to the fight, so we must be ready".
Support for the idea that Arafat planned the Intifadah comes from Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar, who said in September 2010 that when Arafat realized that the Camp David Summit in July 2000 would not result in the meeting of all of his demands, he ordered Hamas as well as Fatah and the Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, to launch "military operations" against Israel.[154] al-Zahar is corroborated by Mosab Hassan Yousef, son of the Hamas founder and leader, Sheikh Hassan Yousef, who claims that the Second Intifada was a political maneuver premeditated by Arafat. Yousef claims that "Arafat had grown extraordinarily wealthy as the international symbol of victimhood. He wasn't about to surrender that status and take on the responsibility of actually building a functioning society."[155]
Arafat's widow Suha Arafat reportedly said on Dubai television in December 2012 that her husband had planned the uprising. "Immediately after the failure of the Camp David [negotiations], I met him in Paris upon his return.... Camp David had failed, and he said to me, 'You should remain in Paris.' I asked him why, and he said, 'Because I am going to start an intifada. They want me to betray the Palestinian cause. They want me to give up on our principles, and I will not do so,'" the research institute [MEMRI] translated Suha as saying.[156]
In the New York Times' view, only Israeli actions count towards destroying "good feelings" and starting conflict. Nearly 300 dead Israelis post-Oslo isn't enough to be considered noteworthy. A visit by Ariel Sharon where there were no casualties is awful, but Palestinians dropping stones onto worshippers at the Western Wall during prayers is reduced to "stone throwing Palestinians."

This is another example where reporters simply regurgitate myths as conventional wisdom - myths that they helped create with their own agendas, including in this case to minimize the deadly attacks in Israel during the Oslo process to "give peace a chance" as well as accepting without checking the Palestinian narrative that Ariel Sharon's pre-planned and approved visit sparked the violence.

(h/t Yenta)

UPDATE: The NYT fixed the first problem and slightly mitigated the second, although it still says that Israeli police "inaugurated" the violence: (h/t Alyssa)

Mr. Peres, Mr. Rabin and Arafat were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994.
But the era of good feelings did not last. Barely a year later, Mr. Rabin was assassinated by a Jewish gunman upset by the accords, elevating Mr. Peres to the post of prime minister. A series of Palestinian suicide bombings undercut Mr. Peres’s authority, and he lost a narrow election to Mr. Netanyahu in 1996.
Conflict between Israel and the Palestinians accelerated in 2000 after a visit by the opposition leader Ariel Sharon to the sacred plaza in Jerusalem known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. The next day, the Israeli police fired on stone-throwing protesters, inaugurating a new round of violence that became known as the second intifada.




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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

From Ian:

JPost Editorial: Beyond partisanship
While in New York, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with the presidential candidates of both major parties.
To his credit, Netanyahu managed to maintain a statesmanlike neutrality that reflects America’s broad, non-partisan support for Israel. The prime minister was less successful at doing this in the previous presidential elections, during which he was perceived as favoring Mitt Romney over Barack Obama.
In the months that remain until the November presidential election, Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders should strive to maintain their neutrality. The ties between Israel and the US are too strong and profound to turn support for Israel into a partisan issue.
Israel is an American ally in the most profound meaning of the word, and this should be reflected in our diplomacy.
Regardless of which party receives a mandate from the American people to enter the White House, relations with the US will remain strong. That is apparent from the statements made by both candidates, but it is also self-evident from the very nature of the alliance between the US and Israel. In every significant way Israel and America are allies.
Ideologically speaking, Israel shares America’s values.

Shmuley Boteach: Good times come as Israel omitted from the US debate
My, how four years change things. In Obama-Romney in 2012 Israel was a big and serious issue. It came up in the debates. Romney traveled to Israel. Netanyahu was accused of choosing sides.
Four years later, tonight in the Clinton-Trump showdown, Bibi merited a tiny mention in the closing moments of the debate when Trump said he had met with the Prime Minister the day before “and he’s not a happy camper.” He said it in relation to President Obama’s Iran Nuclear Agreement, which legitimized the Mullahs as a nuclear power and will give them $150 billion by which to sew terror mayhem throughout the world.
Hillary Clinton brags about being the original architect of the deal and she strongly defended it in the debate.
Aside from that, Israel was not mentioned at all.
Which is not to say that the Middle East did not come up. It came up plenty. It is to say that, believe it or not, Israel is seen, I assume, by both political candidates as an island of stability in an otherwise horrible region. So why even talk about it? I remember a saying attributed to Golda Meir which said something to the effect that good times would come to Israel when it appears in the media as much as Switzerland.
Benjamin Netanyahu on What Israel Has to Offer the World
In an in-depth interview, the Israeli prime minister discusses a range of topics. These include his economic reforms as finance minister in the early 2000s and what can be done to remove further impediments to growth, Israel’s relationship with Russia, what’s special about his country’s alliance with the U.S., and even his thoughts about divine providence.
Benjamin Netanyahu Receives Hudson's Herman Kahn Award


  • Tuesday, September 27, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
From Iran's Tasnim News:
The secretary general of the Lebanese resistance movement, Hezbollah, says he considers the radical ideology of Wahhabism to be even more pernicious than the Zionist Israeli regime.

Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah made the remark during his annual meeting with Muslim eulogists and the people responsible for commemoration mourning ceremonies during the Lunar month of Muharram, Press TV reported on Tuesday.

The Hezbollah chief said he considered Wahhabism to be responsible for damaging Islam’s image worldwide.

Wahhabism is more evil than Israel, especially [in] that it seeks to destroy others and eliminate whatever thing that has to do with Islam and its history,” he said.
We're Number 2! We're Number 2!

And if you consider America to be Big Satan and Israel to be Little Satan, Israel's position may have dropped to #3.

Iran and its lackeys must really be moderating!



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The stuff that legends are made from…

In a time that seems very dark it is important to see examples of strength and courage.

In a time when it seems that there are no honorable leaders it is important to see examples of people who are – leaders and honorable.

I hear Americans despair: “There is no one. They are all liars. No one really cares.”

An age is called dark, not because the light refuses to shine but because people refuse to see. They exist. They are real.

They are in Israel.

Ziv Shilon is the stuff legends are made from. His story became highly dramatic in October 2012…
It was 2 am and pitch-black when he crawled to where it was. The 24 year old Captain didn’t take anyone with him because he was afraid someone would get hurt. Not even a sniffer dog.

He had a feeling that he might get hurt but knew that someone had to dismantle the bomb. Or at least try.

The bomb exploded ripping off one of his hands, mangling the other.

Afraid of being taken hostage by the terrorists, the Captain picked himself off the ground and ran back to where his soldiers were waiting.

Horrified at the sight of his beloved Captain running towards him pouring blood, the medic was frozen to the spot. The Captain screamed at him: “Get a hold of yourself! Bandage my hands and get me to a hospital quick or I will die!”

On the way to the hospital the Captain had someone help him call his sister. He told her to come to the hospital, that he had lost his hands. He did not want to call his mother because she had been battling cancer and he didn’t want to worry her.

At the hospital the doctors struggled to save his hand, what remained. All they could do for the other was make a clean cut and sew up the stump of where his hand once been.

When the Captain was being moved to the hospital room he knew there would be lots of people around including media. He asked to be covered in the flag of the country he loves. He wanted to send a message, particularly to his soldiers. He would be strong and heal and they would continue to protect the country.

The Captain saluted the General who came to see him in the hospital. He was in so much pain he could barely lift his arm but he saluted none the less.

When the Prime Minister came to visit him the Captain thanked him. Humbled the Prime Minister could only answer: “You are thanking me? I came here to thank you! The nation salutes you.”

The Captain’s mother kissed the Prime Minister and told him: “I would make a meal for you if I could.”  He told her: “If you are inviting me I will come, with the Mayor of your town. But after that, when your son is better I will invite you to my house.”

There is more to this story but I am sure that in the reading many would not believe it. It sounds like some kitsch American movie doesn’t it?

Honor, love of country, duty, and true compassion… the head of state showing genuine humility to a not very important individual because of the qualities he embodies…  Such dramatic scenes could only happen in Hollywood. And in such a movie the screenwriter would be chastised. People would say it’s melodramatic, not believable.

But it’s not a movie. It’s our reality.

See the video of Prime Minister Netanyahu visiting Capitan Shilon. Note his attitude towards Ziv and his family:




People like Capitan Ziv Shilon are the backbone of the State of Israel.  Ziv is “just” another Israeli guy. Anywhere else he would be a legend.

Since his injury Ziv married the love of his life, competed in a marathon and had a beautiful baby girl. He gives lectures, teaching others that anything is possible. The power of the will is always stronger than the power of the body.

Ziv’s wife Adi is no less a hero than he is. She loved Ziv before he was injured and their bond has grown stronger since. Hers is the heroism of love, endurance, patience and so much more. Love makes you strong. She is proof of that.

When I need strength I look to people like Ziv and Adi Shilon. My challenges pale in comparison!

Theirs is not a Hollywood story. These extraordinary people are ordinary Israelis.

These are the people that walk among us.






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From Ian:

Ex-president Peres said fighting for life as condition worsens
Former president and prime minister Shimon Peres’s condition has significantly deteriorated over the past 24 hours, leaving the 93-year-old “fighting for his life,” according to sources and doctors who have been treating him since he suffered a serious stroke two weeks ago.
“Peres’s condition continues to be very serious and the lack of progress at this stage is a source for worry,” doctors at the Sheba Medical Center outside Tel Aviv said Tuesday, according to reports carried by several Hebrew-language media outlets.
Doctors say his breathing, kidney function and several other indexes have dropped over the past few hours, raising concerns that he could be headed for multiple organ failure, according to reports.
“The president is fighting for his life,” a source close to Peres told AFP on condition of anonymity. “His health position is very, very difficult. His doctors are worried about his health.”
His spokesperson could not be reached for comment.
Peres, 93, was hospitalized at the Sheba Medical Center on September 13 after suffering a major stroke. He has been under sedation since then, with doctors reporting slight progress in his condition.
Caroline Glick: Ending the Palestinian Exception
It was never about building “Palestine.”
This then brings us to the US and Europe, and their unstinting support for Palestinian demands for the release of terrorists. What are they thinking? Earlier this month Prof. Eugene Kontorovich of Northwestern University Law School and the Kohelet Forum published a paper on the international community’s general interpretation of paragraph 49(6) of the Fourth Geneva Protocol from 1949. The relevant clause states that an “Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”
As Kontorovich noted, this clause the forms the basis of the international community’s constant refrain that Israeli communities built beyond the 1949 armistice lines in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria are illegal.
In other words, it forms the basis of the West’s case against Israel and, by extraction, for the Palestinians’.
Just last week during his speech before the UN General Assembly, Obama attacked Israel for its continued settlement activity.
Kontorovich investigated the same international community’s view of communities built by citizens of a dozen other states in lands occupied by their governments in armed conflicts.
He noted that the activities of Moroccans in the Western Sahara, of Turks in Northern Cyprus, of Indonesians in East Timor and of other nationals in multiple other territories are legally indistinguishable from Israel’s activities in the areas it took control over from Jordan in the 1967 Arab-Israel war.
In none of these other cases, however, has the US, EU, UN or any other international or national authority ever invoked the Fourth Geneva Convention or otherwise claimed that those activities are a breach of international law. In other words, the legal basis for the criminalization and political condemnation of Israel in relation to the Palestinians is entirely specious and discriminatory.
In other words, US support for the so-called twostate solution, like the international community’s support for it, is really just a means of discriminating against Israel. It does not advance the cause of peace or justice, for Israelis or for Palestinians. It merely empowers terrorist gangsters to kill Israelis and extort both the Palestinians and the international community.
Dr. Mordechai Kedar: Holidays, Motivation and Shaheeds
When the Muslim holidays coincide with Jewish or Christian festivals, the maelstrom in the heart of potential terrorists is at an even higher level than usual, because the two religions which monopolize the public space were supposed to have disappeared, according to Islam. The gap between reality and the Islamic message of the destruction of Christianity and Judaism drives some of the jihadists to the point of madness in their readiness to attack and bring about the realization of the Koranic ideal "the religion of Allah is Islam." (19:3)
It follows that the common denominator of all Jihadists today and the topic that feeds their frenzy, is the commandment to take part in Jihad. Each terrorist feels – whether he is part of a cell or one of those called lone wolves – that his individual duty is Jihad for Allah in order to eliminate the heretics, whether or not he can complete the job and even if he pays with his life.
As far as he is concerned, this is the right and logical thing to do. Who would not sacrifice temporal life in a miserable and cruel world for eternal life in a world of pleasure?
Despite all this, there are other considerations that motivate not a few attackers, such as the desire for revenge or a need to prove courage and manliness. Women terrorists usually are trying to escape a cruel fate at the hands of family who feel their honor has been sullied because of the liberal behavior of the women of the family.
There are a good many internet sites that support the idea of the paradise awaiting the shaheed and color it with green grass, blooming trees and blue waters. When juxtaposed with the arid deserts that characterize most of the Arab and Islamic world, that verdant picture can exert a good deal of influence.
The world must own up to the truth about the terror attacks perpetrated by Muslims, admit the motivation behind them and the goals which bring them to go out to war against those whom they perceive as enemies.

  • Tuesday, September 27, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
From Ammon News:
The government-owned National Electric Power Company (NEPCO) on Monday signed an agreement with Noble Energy under which the latter will provide 40 per cent of the Kingdom's electricity-generating needs.

In remarks to The Jordan Times on Monday, NEPCO said that the results of feasibility and technical studies it has conducted all indicated that the "deal would achieve an annual surplus for the company exceeding $300 million".

NEPCO also said that the deal will contribute to cutting its power-generation costs and "consequently avert sharp hikes in prices of electricity during the coming years".

NEPCO put the validating reasons behind the deal as part of its strategy to diversify energy resources in light of disruption in Egyptian gas supply to the country.

The company also said that signing the deal with Noble Energy will enhance regional cooperation and will make Jordan part of the project of the EU and the Union for the Mediterranean to utilise the gas fields discovered in the East Mediterranean.
Jordan's parliament bitterly opposed the deal - to no avail:
NEPCO's deal with Noble Energy was a matter of hot debate inside Parliament and at other platforms, with many MPs and activists expressing their rejection of importing natural gas from Israel.

In February this year, the 17th Lower House held a special meeting with the government to discuss the intended gas deal with Noble Energy. The session saw many MPs call on the government to shy from importing the Israeli gas, citing the frequent Israeli crimes against the Palestinian people.

At the time, the government left it unclear whether it had annulled the transaction with Noble Energy to buy natural gas from Israel.

In August this year, activists said they would sue the government over its gas deal with Israel, which they said would hurt the Kingdom’s economy.

“The government prefers to support the terrorist Israeli entity with billions of dollars through the deal instead of investing in renewable energy projects and creating jobs for Jordanians who suffer from high unemployment rates,” said the Jordanian National Campaign Against the Gas Agreement with the Zionist Entity.

In a statement on its Facebook page, the group said it had formed a legal team in cooperation with the Jordan Bar Association to file a lawsuit against the government.

The Facebook page for the Jordanian National Campaign Against the Gas Agreement with the Zionist Entity.is here. It includes cartoons that both play to the fears of Israel shutting off the switch to Jordan to the usual "Zionists are baby-killers" motif that is so prevalent among Arabs.







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  • Tuesday, September 27, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon

In what may be an unprecedented move, a Saudi newspaper has criticized Mahmoud Abbas for reflexively rejecting Binyamin Netanyahu's invitation for him to speak to Knesset during his speech at the UN last week:
The Palestinians should not be too quick to dismiss the invitation extended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to address Israel’s parliament in return to “gladly come to speak peace with the Palestinian parliament in Ramallah.” Netanyahu’s gesture was quickly rejected by the Palestinians as a “new gimmick” but the invitation is reminiscent of the one issued by former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin to former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to visit Israel — and the rest is history.

...The Palestinians have rebuffed Netanyahu’s past offers for such invitations, saying his hard-line position on all core issues made dialogue impossible.

...But the Palestinians should note that at the time, Egypt and Israel were mortal enemies, having fought three wars. Camp David called for a five-year transitional period of Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank and Gaza. The transitional period would include the introduction of Palestinian self-government and an end to Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Much of the Arab world derided it as a weak deal. But in hindsight, if the provisions had been carried out, Israel and the Palestinians might not be in the impasse they are in at present.
Notably, top Egyptian intelligence official also derided Abbas in a leaked phone call:
A high-ranking Egyptian intelligence officer ridicules Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in a leaked telephone conversation with exiled Palestinian strongman Mohammed Dahlan, it was revealed Saturday night.

Abbas was referred to as “stupid,” and his movement Fatah “screwed,” by Major General Wael el-Safty of Egypt’s General Intelligence Directorate (GID), which is responsible for providing national security intelligence both at home and abroad.

In the latest leaked recording, only the Egyptian side of the conversation is audible. Safty’s voice is heard, but not [Mohammed] Dahlan’s responses.

Still, it is obvious that the person on the other end of the telephone is Dahlan, because he is referred to by his kunya, or traditional Palestinian name, Abu Fadi.

Furthermore, after exchanging pleasantries, Safty asks about members of Dahlan’s family by name.

“Abu Fadi, the years are passing,” the Egyptian intelligence officer reminisces early on in the tape.

Soon thereafter, they begin talking about someone whose “concentration isn’t at full capacity”. Safty then says this person “has nothing to offer”.

The tapes go on to make clear that the man they are talking about is Abbas, 81.

“You told me something I still remember to this day,” Safty tells Dahlan. “You said that he [Abbas] is like a camel.”

The implication here is that Abbas is repeatedly churning out old ideas without bringing anything new to the table. Camels, like cattle, are ruminant animals that digest then re-digest their food a number of times.

“He isn’t smart at all,” the Egyptian intelligence officer says. “The issue of [Abbas’] age also comes into it… He doesn’t want to change, he doesn’t want to do anything.”

At this point, the conversation turns from petty insults to expressions of real frustration with Abbas. Safty lets loose.

“Fatah is completely screwed,” he says. “The [Palestinian Liberation] Organisation is even worse.”

“He can’t even contain the factions [within Fatah],” he says. “These are the ones that Abu Mazen [Abbas’s kunya] couldn’t contain, these people drove me absolutely crazy, their positions have begun to align with Hamas.

“He can’t bring them together,” Safty tells Dahlan in utter exasperation. “I swear, he can’t bring them together.

“It's stupidity,” he says, before again referring to Abbas’s advancing age, adding that the PA president does not have many laps left to run: “The track is running out, if you excuse the phrase.”
Khaled Abu Toameh adds:
Abbas, his aides admit, is today more worried about the "Arab meddling" in the internal affairs of the Palestinians than he is about "collective punishment" or "settlement activities." In fact, he is so worried that he recently lashed out at those Arab countries that have launched an initiative to "re-arrange the Palestinian home from within" and bring about changes in the Palestinian political scene.

The Arab countries behind the initiative -- Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates -- are being referred to by many Palestinians as the "Arab Quartet."

In an unprecedented critique of these countries, Abbas recently declared:

"The decision is ours and we are the only ones who make decisions. No one has authority over us. No one can dictate to us what to do. I don't care about the discomfort of Washington or Moscow or other capitals. I don't want to hear about these capitals. I don't want the money of these capitals. Let's free ourselves from the 'influence' of these capitals."

Although he did not mention the four Arab countries by name, it was clear that Abbas was referring to the "Arab Quartet" when he was talking about "capitals" and their influence and money. Abbas's message: "How dare any Arab country tell me what to do, no matter how wealthy and influential it may be." Abbas sees the demand by these Arab countries for new Palestinian leadership, unity and reforms in Fatah as "unacceptable meddling in the internal affairs of the Palestinians."

So what exactly is it in the new Arab initiative that has so enraged Abbas, to the point that he is prepared to place at risk his relations with four of the Arab world's preeminent states?

According to reports in Arab media outlets, the "Arab Quartet" has drafted a plan to "activate the Palestinian portfolio" by ending the dispute between Abbas's Fatah and Hamas. The plan also calls for ending the schism within Fatah by allowing some of its expelled leaders, including Mohamed Dahlan, to return to the faction. The overall aim of the plan is to unite the West Bank and Gaza Strip under one authority and end the state of political anarchy in the territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. The "Arab Quartet" has even formed a committee to oversee the implementation of any "reconciliation" agreements reached between Fatah and Hamas and Abbas and his adversaries in Fatah. According to the plan, if such an agreement is not reached, the Arab League will intervene to "enforce reconciliation" between the rival Palestinian parties.
The irony of Abbas being subject to an imposed solution to his splits with the Dahlan faction and Hamas is too delicious. His major initiative, after all, is to have the international community impose a solution on Israel.
Abbas and Fatah leaders in Ramallah are convinced that the "Arab Quartet" members are actually planning to pave the way for promoting "normalization" between the Arab world and Israel -- all at the expense of the Palestinians. They claim that the four Arab countries are using and promoting Dahlan in order to facilitate their mission of rapprochement with Israel. These countries have reached the conclusion that as long as Abbas and the current PA leadership are around, it would be very difficult to initiate any form of "normalization" or peace treaties between Arab countries and Israel. The PA leadership's position has always been that peace between the Arab countries and Israel should come only after, and not before, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is resolved.
Bibi's vision of peace between Arabs and Israel that he mentioned at the UN is further along than people realize - and Mahmoud Abbas is the main obstacle. The Arab world has been sick and tired of the Palestinian issue for years and the Arab leaders correctly realize that it is the Palestinian side that has blocked any chance for peace, by insisting on having its own demands fully met before any other movement.

At a time when the Arab world has real enemies and real problems, issues that they share with Israel, the Palestinian position becomes less and less relevant.

The cracks in the purported Arab unity on the issue of Israel are widening.



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A new subchapter in the Simona Sharoni saga:From Plattsburgh State's student newspaper Cardinal Points:

Plattsburgh State gender and women’s studies Professor Simona Sharoni has received a slew of online threats after making comments about feminism and the conflict between Israel and Palestine, particularly in support of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions, BDS, movement.

The threats were received by Sharoni through both her PSUC and personal email accounts, as well as tweets directed to her Twitter handle.

“The vast majority of of the messages were sexist in tone and incoherent in substance. They consisted of attacks on my character and academic reputation with several messages that included threats to my career and job security and two messages, which included direct threats to my safety,” Sharoni said in a letter addressed to PSUC colleagues. “One threatened me with rape and the other with both rape and physical violence.”

The initial twitter campaign against Sharoni was initiated April 19 by user @ElderofZiyon, whose bio on the social media site states he is a “International man of mystery, who just happens to run the world. Zionism, Israel, the Arab world, Palestinians, all from a different viewpoint.”

Twitter user @Mrvigilante tweeted to Sharoni, “may be [sic] you should try rape and terrorism to see the difference. Can be arranged.”
I tweeted to her exactly once in April, which is not exactly starting an entire Twitter campaign, and certainly I have nothing to do with any alleged threats of rape against her:



I wrote to the newspaper and asked why they mischaracterized my role.

The answer I received is that Sharoni herself is the one who accused me of starting this campaign in the letter to her colleagues!

(The editor says that she will correct the article, although that hasn't happened yet. Her characterization of two alleged threats as a "slew" is more sloppy reporting.)

After the initial threats were received in April, Sharoni said she contacted University Police.

She said she “was fairly satisfied with the response of campus police and IT specialists,” though she still felt vulnerable on campus.

The example from @MrVigilante of a "rape threat" does not strike me as that at all, either. While I don't condone it, he is saying that Sharoni's linking of Israel to rape is less credible than linking Palestinian terror to rape, and crudely offering to help her research the topic. Again, I don't support that statement nor did I have anything to do with it, besides publicizing her own words.

If Sharoni felt threatened by him or any other tweet, she should have gone to the actual police or the FBI, not the campus police. This was not even remotely a credible threat to her.

But Sharoni decided to make an issue of her being "threatened" and "harassed" by Freedom of Information Law requests because she simply cannot defend her absurd positions linking Israel to campus rape via "intersectionality." She claims that she is being persecuted because of her support for BDS, but in fact she is being criticized for this tendentious linkage which she admits is an anti-Israel strategy she made up to inflame passions.

Essentially, Sharoni does not have the ability to defend her slanderous and false accusations against Israel, and to divert attention from her own failings in logic and truth, she is claiming victimhood because people are now asking questions about how an academic can so easily make such false statements.

It is not unreasonable to ask whether someone entrusted to teach students is trustworthy herself.

What is sad is that her colleagues, her college newspaper and some media are accepting her version of events without even bothering to check her accusations. Even this incident shows that Sharoni has no academic rigor as she lashes out at her ideological opponents armed with nothing but false accusations and lies.

I invite her colleagues at Plattsburgh State to read my critique of her words and to agree - or argue -with me. It is something that Sharoni clearly doesn't welcome herself.





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Monday, September 26, 2016

  • Monday, September 26, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
In which we discuss the statements that each campaign made after meeting with Bibi.

I wonder why Donald Trump posted his statement after his meeting with Bibi on Sunday, but Hillary only released hers to the press but didn't post it anywhere I could find.






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From Ian:

Eugene Kontorovich: The Palestinians unsporting and illegal ‘football war’ against Israel
Human Rights Watch published a long, graphics-rich report on Sunday denouncing Israeli semi-pro soccer (football) clubs in towns in the West Bank. A few weeks ago, a group of European Parliament members sent a letter along similar lines to FIFA, the international soccer governing body. The parliament members argue the clubs violate international law, and for good measure, the FIFA constitution, and call for the expulsion of the teams, or Israel itself, from world soccer.
These efforts are all part of a broad Palestinian push to pressure Israeli in international forums. The legal arguments raised in these documents are entirely contrived. They contradict longstanding FIFA practice and create a double standard for Israel. And that’s just not sporting.
The human rights claims in the Human Rights Watch (HRW) report are tendentious — they assert that the local soccer leagues (all quite small-time) are “making the settlements more sustainable, thus propping up” the system. Most of the communities in question are just a few kilometers from the 1949 Jordanian-Israeli armistice line and would remain in Israel in all the major two-state proposals; their residents typically commute to work in bigger nearby cities. It is laughable to think anyone would leave them if the football league moved a few kilometers down the road. In any case, contrary to the HRW’s claims, there is simply no support in international law for prohibiting business in occupied territories, as British and French courts have recently affirmed.
Indeed, Morocco maintains a team, part of its national football federation, in occupied Western Sahara. Yet the HRW completely fails to mention this fact in its report. The human rights abuses in Western Sahara — where the majority of the population are Moroccan settlers and the indigenous population has been heavily displaced — are too vast to recount. No one — including the HRW and the Parliament members — has suggested expelling Morocco on account of its team, based deep in land taken from the Sahrawi.
The football-as-human rights-violation arguments against Israel are tendentious and prove too much. So those campaigning against Israel rely principally on a lawyerly claim about FIFA’s rules: The clubs “clearly violate FIFA’s statutes, according to which clubs from one member association cannot play on the territory of another member association without its and FIFA’s consent,” the members claim.
Curiously, the Parliament members and the think tanks that support them do not cite any statutes saying this. And that is because the statutes specifically do not say that — and numerous precedents show it is not how they are understood.
Lib Dems: Tonge’s ‘Jewish power’ article not anti-Semitic
By sharing an article about “Jewish power” in British politics, former Lib Dem peer Baroness Jenny Tonge was not being racist, according to the Liberal Democrats.
The ruling, from the party’s Regional Parties Committee, follows a complaint from Gary Spedding, a liberal activist in Northern Ireland, who took issue with Tonge sharing an article by Israeli musician Gilad Atzmon.
Tonge, who is a strong critic of Israel, is no longer a Lib Dem peer and sits in the House of Lords as a cross-bencher. While she remains a member of the party, she does not speak for it in an official capacity.
Relaying the decision, a Lib Dem spokeswoman says: “Having reviewed your complaint, our view is that an opinion can be controversial – and even offensive – but still fall short of being racist.”
She explained: “We are a liberal party that places immense value on freedom of speech… That includes the freedom to criticise in the strongest terms the actions of states and governments and the causal effects of their policies… Any desire not to offend also needs to be balanced against the right to criticise in the strongest terms the actions of states and governments.”
Spedding, who had called for Tonge to be thrown out of the party altogether, said was left “speechless” by the response to the complaint.
UK's Liberal Democrats suspend former MP for alleged antisemitic tweets
A party member of the United Kingdom's Liberal Democrats has been been suspended after posting a series of alleged antisemitic tweets to social media, The Jewish Chronicle reported Sunday.
Matthew Gordon Banks was sacked by the faction after accusing party leader MP Timothy James "Tim" Farron of winning his position due to "London Jews" financing his campaign.
“What fascinates me is that Farron's leadership campaign was organized and funded by London Jews,” Banks posted to Twitter earlier in the week.

  • Monday, September 26, 2016
  • Elder of Ziyon
A reader pointed out to me that when he did a Google Translate on Israelis, the autocomplete function returned with this:


Since the tool learns what to guess based on the user input, I wondered what came up for other nationals when typing in "X are..."

A surprising number are terrorists.








It didn't work out that way for Jordanians or Lebanese or Saudis, which had no suggestions. But Canadians are apparently terrorists too according to users of the tool:

But not Americans.

And the French (once you add the "The") live up to their reputation.


(Google does not change the suggestions based on the target language.)

(h/t Ira G)





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