Tuesday, March 19, 2019


Purim is a nice story. A feel-good, Jewish-people-saved-from-destruction win-in-the-end kind of story.

Many Jews attend a Megillah reading. Even more of us focus on our kids, the costumes they will wear and “mishloach manot” given to celebrate the holiday. How many of us take a moment to actually contemplate the story and what it means? Is something that happened approximately in 357 BCE relevant today?

Most of us think of the holiday as a nice folk-story, a fun holiday for kids. We put most of our effort into costume parties and food. Like many of the holidays, it’s easy to overlook the profound message of Purim.

The stories of Israel are told for a purpose. Many serve as a reminder of events that occurred during the history of our People. All convey lessons that teach us principles and values that shape the identity of the Jewish tribe and do not diminish in relevancy over time.

Purim is no different.

The story tells of a failed attempt to exterminate the Jewish people, more than two thousand years ago – the Jewish people would not have survived to see the Holocaust had this ancient attempted genocide been successful.

“In every generation, they rise up to exterminate us and every time, God saves us from their hands”



Roy Klein saved the lives of his soldiers by throwing himself on a grenade, choosing their lives over his

The Jewish experience of persecution and survival span the ages and bond between generations. Considered in this light, Purim has a much more profound significance than dressing up and making noise at Haman’s name, sending mishloach manot or even considering the philosophical/religious question of where God was during this event.

Purim has a message very relevant for Jews today: Not to speak is to speak.

Usually, this is a message we associate with the Holocaust and the famous poem by Pastor Martin Niemöller:

“First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.”

But his message is not new. In fact, it appears centuries before, in the book of Esther when Mordechai tells Esther: “Do not imagine you will escape inside the king’s house, any more than the rest of the Jews. If you persist in saying nothing at this crisis relief and succor will appear from another quarter but you will perish, you and your family.”

And she did. Although she was terribly afraid. Although, it was dangerous to be a Jew and speak for the Jewish people. She put her people above her own security, what was right above what was convenient.

Does that sound familiar? Queen Esther was a regular Jewish woman who became Queen due to her beauty and charm. She became beloved by the King and had a convenient, comfortable life.
She could have remained silent while her people were slaughtered. Her life would not have changed. She could have ensured the protection of her uncle without speaking for the rest of the Jewish people.

But, instead, she listened to Mordechai and, although terrified, she revealed her Judaism and asked the King to save her people.

After surviving a brutal terror attack, Kay Wilson became one of the most prominent spokespeople in the world against PA payments to terrorists that encourage them to murder Jews and has become a peacemaker – bringing together Jews and Arabs who desire to make peace


She understood that not to speak was to speak. She understood that the survival of her people was more important than her own personal safety. Bravery does not mean a lack of fear. Bravery is understanding the consequences and choosing to act despite the fear.

Queen Esther is celebrated for the choices she made. In hindsight, it is easy to say that she chose right over wrong but, imagine being in the moment – would you choose to put your life in danger for the good of your people? Would you endanger your family for the survival of Am Yisrael?

In today’s world, few are willing to risk their convenience, not mention their lives and yet we wonder why so few spoke up during the Holocaust.

For her bravery, we celebrate Queen Esther but are we following in her footsteps? Today we are not witnessing the Holocaust but there are world leaders who advocate for the elimination of the Jewish State. There are individuals who openly declare that the genocide of the Jewish people should have been completed. Antisemitism is again becoming something that is socially acceptable to express in public.

The question is, when do we speak? And when do we need to listen better to what is really being said around us?


In 2002, Haim Smadar, a guard at a supermarket (a simple minimum wage job) prevented a female suicide bomber from entering the supermarket telling her: “You are not coming in here. You and I will blow up here.” She did blow herself up, murdering Haim and 17-year-old Rachel Levy. In his heroism, he saved many lives.


The Holocaust did not begin with concentration camps and gas chambers. It began with the indoctrination of individuals, enabling them to place the blame for their misfortune on the “other”, the Jew. It begins with small things that, taken individually may be disagreeable but are “not so bad”.

Purim tells us about the power of one person to change the fate of our people. Esther is not described as particularly brilliant or talented. She is just a woman, with a big heart who, with courage and feminine intuition, changed the world.

Purim tells us about a Jew living in the lap of luxury who chose her people over her own personal convenience.

Purim provides us the example of the feminine heroism of Esther and the leadership of Mordechai. Both were necessary, one could not have saved the Jews without the other.

In a world where Antisemitism is again becoming socially acceptable, where Jews are told that they cannot be both feminists and Zionists and many Jews are afraid to speak out about the injustices against our people – what message could be more relevant? When Jews are again forced to choose between silent comfort and standing alone against the danger, what could be more relevant?
Purim teaches that the value of putting the good of our people ahead of our own personal safety and warns of the danger of silence.

Purim teaches us the power of the individual – neither Esther nor Mordechai were prophets or people described as having special communication with God. The happy result of their actions was not promised them (unlike in other biblical stories where the protagonist simply needs to follow God’s instructions). They were regular people who knew that if they did not speak up, no one else would.

Because Mordechai instructed Esther, we are here today.

Because Esther chose her people over herself and spoke with the King, we are here today.

Today, the circumstances are different but the choice is the same. Will you speak up?




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  • Tuesday, March 19, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon


Hamid Dabashi, a professor at Columbia University, writes in Al Jazeera that Muslims and Jews should work together to fight antisemitism.

Sounds reasonable. right?

But this is a smokescreen for Dabashi to to spew his own hate -  to claim that Zionism is an ally of antisemitism, that Israel is a colonialist state beholden to European powers while at the same time the Europeans want to export all Jews to Israel, and other hateful nonsense that appears to actually justify modern Muslim Jew-hatred.

For example:
The Zionists claim that the establishment of the state of Israel is to protect Jews against persecution. This is a false claim. The establishment of the state of Israel in Palestine, where Jews have always lived alongside Muslims and Christians, was a European colonial project and as such has exacerbated the terror coming towards the Jews.
Meaning, Muslims who killed Jewish immigrants were justified because it is all Europe's fault.

Let's back up to how Dabashi describes contemporary European antisemitism:
The numbers are staggering and Europe-wide. "Antisemitism is rising sharply across Europe, experts have said," according to a recent report by the Guardian, "as France reported a 74 percent increase in the number of offences against Jews last year and Germany said the number of violent anti-Semitic attacks had surged by more than 60 percent". The article further says: "The figures confirm the results of three recent Europe-wide surveys showing Jewish people feel at greater risk, and are experiencing markedly more aggression, amid a generalized increase in racist hate speech and violence in a significantly coarser, more polarized political environment."

The deep roots of anti-Semitism in Europe are widespread and murderous. From a prolonged history of pogroms to the Crusades to the horrors of the Holocaust, and a long and nasty history in between, European Jews have been the consistent subject of baseless slander, vicious defamation, malignant lies and rumours, wild and vilifying conspiracy theories, all resulting in massacres and ultimately genocide under Nazi Germany. In no other continent, country, or culture have Jews ever been so brutalised as they have been in Europe.

Although no other clime or continent is entirely immune to it, anti-Semitism is a specifically European disease, with European Christianity a main culprit in the carnage

But look at all the recent attacks against Jews in Europe:

In  2012, in Toulouse, Mohamed Merah shoots dead four people, including three children, at a Jewish school.

In 2014, Mehdi Nemmouche attacks the Jewish Museum in central Brussels, killing two Israeli tourists, a French volunteer and a Belgian museum receptionist.

In 2015, gunman Amedy Coulibaly, claiming allegiance to the Islamic State group, takes hostages at a Jewish supermarket, killing four.

Also in 2015, Omar El-Hussein, a 22-year-old Dane of Palestinian origin, killed a Jewish volunteer security guard outside a synagogue and wounds two  police officers.

In 2018, 85 year old Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll was savagely murdered by two men, one of whom shouted "Allahu Akbar" as he was killing her.

And these are just the major events. In Sweden, "pro-Palestinian" protesters have been heard saying they want a new intifada to kill the Jews and call Jews "apes and pigs."

They aren'r Christian.

Dabashi deliberately erased every single major deadly incident of antisemitism in Europe in order to support his argument that all European antisemitism is Christian. The only mention of an actual attack was the murder of Ilan Halimi by a Muslim gang - but Dabashi just calls them a gang.

In other words, Dabashi - while pretending to be against antisemitism - is erasing rampant Muslim antisemitism in Europe, virtually the only flavor of antisemitism that has actually been killing Jews in Europe over the past decade.

Why does he do this? By mentioning Halimi's murder he shows that he is aware of the many deadly attacks against Jews by Muslims in Europe, so this cannot be an oversight. Dabashi wants to deliberately erase history to bolster his thesis that Muslims cannot be antisemitic and only European Christians can, Why?

The answer can be found in his vitriol against Zionism:

Today, anti-Semitism is real and Zionists are categorically unqualified even to detect, let alone to fight it. Jews are the victims, Zionists the beneficiaries of anti-Semitism. ...

To fight anti-Semitism, the fighter must have moral authority. As a racist apartheid state, Israel lacks that moral authority. As an ideology of racist occupation of Palestine, Zionism lacks that moral authority. As active, hardcore or liberal advocates of that ideology of land theft, occupation and incremental genocide of Palestinians, Zionists lack that moral authority.
According to Dabashi, Zionism is so evil that Zionists have no moral authority - the implication that they have forfeited their very right to be considered human beings.

Of course, Palestinian terror attacks towards "Zionists" in pizza shops and discos are justified because Zionists are immoral subhumans. But he is saying more than that by not mentioning any Muslim attacks against Jews in Europe. That deliberate omission can only be interpreted as a justification for the murder of Jews by Muslims.

The Muslims in Europe weren't attacking Jews bur fighting back against the evil of Zionism. That's why these attacks don't fall in the category of antisemitism - murdering a Holocaust survivor is the action of a freedom fighter. After all, statistically speaking, she was probably a Zionist.

The irony is that while Professor Dabashi says that Zionists cannot claim to be able to define antisemitism, he has proven in this very essay that he is supremely unqualified not only to speak about antisemitism but about any moral issue whatsoever.

Hamid Dabashi is a completely disgusting individual who whitewashes and justifies Muslims murdering Jews.




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The months-long "Israel Apartheid Week" kicked off this year, so time to add to my never-ending series of proofs that Israel is anything but.



Taya has received a lot of grief from Arabs and leftist Israelis who hate the idea that a proud young Muslim woman is also a proud Zionist.




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Monday, March 18, 2019

From Ian:

Pitzer College Disgraces Itself for BDS
Last week, the council of Pitzer College—a liberal-arts school in Claremont, California—voted to end its study-abroad program with Haifa University. The college’s president has declared he will not abide by the resolution of the council, a body made up of representatives of the faculty, staff, and students. But the results, writes Jonathan Marks, are nonetheless disturbing:

Pitzer maintains programs in China and Rwanda, both uncommonly repressive regimes with no regard for academic freedom. And look! They’re embarking on a program with the University of Zimbabwe, “conditions permitting.” . . .

So, to square its rejection of Israel with its rejection of absolutely no other country, the council’s motion focuses wholly on the specifics of Israel’s visa policy. Among other things, that policy bars from the country certain supporters of boycotting it. There is, of course, no reason to make that the line a nation must not cross. . . .

[T]he reason for the Pitzer boycott is the same as it has ever been [for boycotts of Israel]: to strike a blow against the intolerable presence and strength of Jews in the Middle East. Yes, the motion suggests that there may be ways to permit students to travel to Israel without dirtying themselves through contact with Israel’s universities. And yes, the motion allows for the possibility that other countries may one day also be deemed too filthy to touch. The American Studies Association said much the same thing when it voted for a boycott [of Israel] in 2013. Somehow, it hasn’t gotten around to boycotting anyone else yet. . . .

This is the first time that the stakeholders of a college—not a student government association, but the faculty, staff, and students of a college—has voted to ignore the protests of those in their community who consider [the boycott-Israel movement] anti-Semitic and to ignore their own responsibility to protect scholarship and teaching from partisanship. And all to spit on a country most of them don’t know a blessed thing about.
Germany Deports Convicted Palestinian Terrorist Rasmea Odeh, Cancels BDS Event After Outcry
After a strongly worded statement from United States Ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, the German government has disallowed a planned anti-Semitic "Boycott, Divestment, Sanction" event in Berlin, and expelled its headline speaker, convicted Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh.

The Jerusalem Post reports that the German government and the Berlin Department for the Interior responded quickly to international outcy following the announcement that Odeh was set to speak at a "Palestinian Women in the Liberation Struggle" in the country's capital city, even after initially pledging to allow the event to go forward.

Odeh, a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), was the mastermind and lead bomber in an attack on a Jewish grocery store in Israel in 1969 which left two Hebrew University students dead and scores injured. She was convicted and jailed for a decade before being released in a prisoner exchange. Eventually, she ended up in the United States. She was finally deported back to her home country of Jordan in 2017, after U.S. authorities discovered she had lied about her terrorism convictions on her immigration application.

The elderly Odeh remains a hero to anti-Israel activists across the globe, and has fans in both Congresswoman Rashida Tliab (D-MI) and Women's March leader Linda Sarsour, according to William Jacobson at Legal Insurrection. No surprise, both women have been known to express anti-Semitic views.

Petition requests UNESCO to remove antisemitic Belgian "Carnival at Aalst" from Heritage list
After the Carnival in Aalst, Belgium, featured caricatured Jewish figures with money and rats, UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI) and the Simon Wiesenthal Centre (SWC) requested that UNESCO remove Aalst from its List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

The Carnival at Aalst has been recognized on the list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity since 2010.

A petition urging the removal of the Carnival from the list has received over 14,000 signatures.

“UNESCO should not continue to endorse this repeated violation of its values by retaining the Carnival on its Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity”, Jonathan Turner, chief executive of UKLFI commented.

“The date of the Bureau’s meeting, 21 March, is the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. This will be a good opportunity for the members of the Bureau to show that they really mean it,” Dr. Shimon Samuels, SWC’s Director for International Relations, said.

The Ambassador of Poland to UNESCO has endorsed the request.

UKLFI is an association that fights anti-Israel and antisemitic activity. The SWC is a global human rights organization that researches the Holocaust and hate in a historic and contemporary context. The SWC is accredited by UNESCO and an Associate Partner NGO.

The Dutch Chief Rabbi, Binyamin Jacobs, said that the portrayal at the Aalst Carnival was “shocking” and contained “typical, antisemitic caricatures from 1939.”

Continuing my re-captioning of single-panel cartoons....





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  • Monday, March 18, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
One of the most interesting things about Israel is that everywhere you look, you can find sites from over a thousand years ago that no one even thinks is a big deal.

A couple of weeks ago I visited Minat al-Qal'a, the remains of an Umayyad fort that was repurposed by the Crusaders, on a beach in Ashdod.

Although the site is fenced in, the fence is broken and unfortunately it looks like kids go in there to drink or otherwise party. It doesn't appear that the Israel Antiquities Authority has placed a high priority on this fort, which is very impressive.

Here's my 360 degree panorama from the center of the fort. It renders a little weirdly so I am including the full panorama.





It is large, and includes three mostly identical rooms still enclosed.







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From Ian:

Father of 12 succumbs to injuries from Sunday terror attack
Rabbi Achiad Ettinger died of his injuries Monday, a day after being shot by a Palestinian terrorist during an attack in the northern West Bank, a family spokesperson said.

Ettinger, 47, was a father of 12 from the settlement of Eli. Doctors had been working to save his life since the attack near Ariel Sunday morning in which a soldier, Gal Keidan, was also killed.

Ettinger was shot in the head and neck as he drove by the Ariel Junction by terror suspect Omar Abu Laila, 19, who had stolen Geidan’s gun and opened fire on passing cars, according to the IDF.

He was rushed to Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva in critical condition and doctors worked for a day to save his life before he succumbed to his injuries, the hospital said.

Relatives of Ettinger told reporters Sunday that despite having been shot and bleeding profusely, he turned his car around and fired four bullets in the direction of the attacker, who managed to escape in a vehicle abandoned by a fleeing driver.

“This self-sacrifice characterized him over the years,” his family said in a statement, noting his decision to live for several years in south Tel Aviv “to strengthen Jewish identity” in the working class neighborhood.

His family asked that his organs be donated, Ettinger’s sister told reporters.

Hundreds mourn terror victim Rabbi Ahiad Ettinger in Eli
Hundreds of mourners came to the funeral of Rabbi Ahiad Ettinger in the settlement of Eli on Monday, as his family and friends tearfully eulogized and praised him for his life’s work and for having attacked the terrorist who took killed IDF soldier Gal Kaidan and the rabbi himself.

Ettinger, the father of 12, was killed in Sunday’s terror attack as he stopped to shoot at the terrorist as he was carrying out his attack, who returned fire and mortally wounded the rabbi.

Speaking at the funeral, Education Minister Naftali Bennett vowed to “cut off the evil” of terrorism and said that the State of Israel needed to take action in order “to win” the battle against its enemies.

“The evil that cuts off the best people must itself be cut off,” said Bennett in front of Ettinger’s family.

“On your grave, I say that the blood of Jews will not be the cheapest thing in the Middle East. We will cut off terror only when we free ourselves from our legal and mental bonds which prevent us from winning,” continued the minister.

Bennett described the rabbi as “a hero in life and hero in death,” and praised both his work in establishing a yeshiva in south Tel Aviv and his heroism in stopping his vehicle to attack the terrorist who was perpetrating a terror attack at that very moment.

“When the murderer stood not far from where we are now Rabbi Ahiad could have done the easiest thing and ignore the attack, say it’s not my problem, but he fired at the murderer and paid for it with his life,” said Bennett.
Netanyahu vows to build new West Bank housing following terror attack
Israel will begin building 840 housing units in the West Bank town of Ariel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday following Sunday's terror attack.

Speaking Monday at a visit to the town near which two people were killed in a terrorist attack the day before, the prime minister said, “These terrorists will not uproot us from here, the total opposite will happen.

“Tomorrow, we will begin building 840 housing units in Ariel in a new neighborhood as was approved two years ago.”

Netanyahu offered his condolences to the families of Rabbi Ahiad Ettinger and Gal Keidan.

Keidan, 19, a soldier guarding Ariel junction was killed at the scene of Sunday’s terror attack. He was buried in his hometown of Beersheba on Monday morning.

Ettinger, 47, succumbed to his wounds Monday morning after doctors at Beilinson hospital fought to save his life for almost 24 hours. Ettinger was the father of 12 and was head of the Oz and Emunah Yeshiva in south Tel Aviv.

“The two people who were killed were wonderful people, I am told,’ said the prime minister. “The hearts of the entire people are with their families.”

  • Monday, March 18, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon

On Sunday morning, Israeli police found a small glider made from polystyrene that had an explosive device attached to it that came from Gaza.

The explosive was neutralized.

A similar booby-trapped  plane was found last week, that one attached to balloons. My guess is that if the balloons are shot down (with bullets or lasers) or naturally explode when they gain enough height, the plane can glide a long distance before landing, increasing the range of the improvised explosives.

There were some 50 balloons with incendiary devices launched from Gaza on Sunday, perhaps to make up from Hamas canceling the "return march" on Friday.

There is no weapon more indiscriminate that incendiary balloons. Even the most rudimentary rockets can be aimed a little bit, but these balloons can land anywhere.

Which makes the silence of human rights organizations about this clear violation of international law even more egregious.




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  • Monday, March 18, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon


The new prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, Muhammed Shtayyeh, a key member of Fatah's Central Committee, has emphasized that Fatah does not recognize Israel:



The new cabinet and government is made up of only Fatah members, as opposed to the previous one which was nominally independent.

Abbas has dissolved the Palestinian Legislative Council which was led by Hamas members. To do it, he used the Palestinian Constitutional Court, which has mostly Fatah members that Abbas handpicked in 2016.

In other words, every single Palestinian executive, legislative and judicial branch is now headed by Fatah, and Mahmoud Abbas is the head of Fatah besides being president of the Palestinian Authority and the PLO.

Fatah does not recognize Israel, even though the PLO pretends to.

There has been very little discussion in Western media about Abbas' illegal moves to consolidate power, even as there have been hundreds of articles about Israeli internal politics. Similarly, the positions of these new leaders of Palestinian bodies - support for terrorism, being against a two state solution - have been ignored as well.

The lack of interest in how the Palestinian side is acting, combined with the intense interest in finding fault with the most minor of actions or words by Israeli officials, is simply another manifestation of how the media and world governments are biased against Israel - and don't really care about Palestinians.




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  • Monday, March 18, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon


One fairly consistent feature that can be found among most people is psychological projection, the accusation that your ideological enemies are guilty of your own crimes or less than pristine thoughts.

Arab leaders accuse Jews of ridiculous crimes that invariably are things that they have done themselves, like attacking the enemy's crops or stealing their water.

The progressive Left is at least as guilty of projection. The entire idea that "white people" are invariably racist and that people of color are more righteous because of their skin color is as racist as it gets. No one stereotypes the sins of their ideological enemies more than today's "progressive" Left. And often they accuse white people, even those on the farthest Left, of subconscious racism that is so deeply embedded that it simply cannot ever be truly erased, and therefore all white people must be burdened with the original sin of racism forever.

Often, this projection serves as another psychological tool used by magicians - a means to misdirect people's attention so they don't see what is going on in front of their faces. When you keep the discussion oriented towards the supposed sins of your opponents, you keep the discussion away from people looking at you.

Ilhan Omar pretends to address her critics by misdirecting them in her new Washington Post op-ed:




No, the noise isn't about her views of foreign policy, which are pretty much identical to all progressives. The noise is about her latent antisemitic attitudes. But Omar wants to misdirect away from that.

Since I began my first term in Congress, I have sought to speak openly and honestly about the scale of the issues our country faces — whether it is ending the crippling burden of student debt, tackling the existential threat of climate change or making sure no one in one of the richest countries in the world dies from lack of health care.
 When she accused Jews of dual loyalty and the Jewish lobby of controlling Congress with its "Benjamins," she was speaking openly and honestly - about her own antisemitic feelings, feelings that are so deep that she does not even recognize them. Her view of US foreign policy is one that is secretly controlled by nefarious Jewish money and influence, that Jews speak with essentially one voice on Israel.

The article pretends to insist on using a single standard based on human rights for all nations, but the logic falls apart when you look past the platitudes:
 Our criticisms of oppression and regional instability caused by Iran are not legitimate if we do not hold Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain to the same standards.
I was unaware that Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain are controlling and funding terror groups worldwide like Iran is. But let's treat them all the same, based on internal human rights only, and ignore fomenting terror that violates the human rights of people she really doesn't think deserve the same human rights as everyone else!

Even though this op-ed was carefully written to make it appear that Omar is not obsessed with "Palestine," she has to address it and gives it five paragraphs - and her bias shines through even the layers of consultants and ghostwriters that she hired to spin this op-ed to be as liberal and fair as possible:

This vision also applies to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. U.S. support for Israel has a long history. The founding of Israel 70 years ago was built on the Jewish people’s connection to their historical homeland, as well as the urgency of establishing a nation in the wake of the horror of the Holocaust and the centuries of anti-Semitic oppression leading up to it. Many of the founders of Israel were themselves refugees who survived indescribable horrors.

We must acknowledge that this is also the historical homeland of Palestinians. And without a state, the Palestinian people live in a state of permanent refugeehood and displacement. This, too, is a refugee crisis, and they, too, deserve freedom and dignity.

A balanced, inclusive approach to the conflict recognizes the shared desire for security and freedom of both peoples. I support a two-state solution, with internationally recognized borders, which allows for both Israelis and Palestinians to have their own sanctuaries and self-determination. This has been official bipartisan U.S. policy across two decades and has been supported by each of the most recent Israeli and Palestinian leaders, as well as the consensus of the Israeli security establishment. As Jim Mattis, who later was President Trump’s defense secretary, said in 2011 , “The current situation between those two peoples is unsustainable.”

Working toward peace in the region also means holding everyone involved accountable for actions that undermine the path to peace — because without justice, there can never be a lasting peace. When I criticize certain Israeli government actions in Gaza or settlements in the West Bank, it is because I believe these actions not only threaten the possibility of peace in the region — they also threaten the United States’ own national security interests.

My goal in speaking out at all times has been to encourage both sides to move toward a peaceful two-state solution. We need to reinsert this call back into the public debate with urgency. Both parties must come to the table for a final peace deal; violence will not bring us any closer to that day.
Notice that Omar doesn't say a word about Palestinian obligations in human rights, or in bringing peace. Notice that she doesn't say explicitly that the two state solution must include a Jewish state, only an Israeli one. Notice that she only brings specific examples of bad behavior by only one side that must be protested. Notice the absence of the words "terror" or "Hamas."

Notice also that she uses another dog-whistle - "justice" - a word that means, to the far Left, the dismantling of the Jewish political presence in the region, as something that is inherently racist, while another Arab and Muslim state (that the Palestinian constitution says "Palestine" is) is not a violation of "justice." To the far-Left, "justice" means that Palestinians have the right to move to Israel even four generations after they fled. Omar probably agrees with that definition, always intended to destroy the Jewish state. She dances around her real feelings on that critical component of "justice."

Also notice that Omar doesn't address how her supposed care about universal values doesn't square with her support of BDS - of boycotting only one nation in the world. If everyone is to be treated the same, then why such particularity in punishing only one state in the world with boycotts and sanctions? And the founders of the BDS movement are very clear that they are against a two state solution - how can she support Israel's existence, and what form would Israel take?

Finally, notice that Omar's position that Israeli actions "threaten the United States’ own national security interests" means that Omar believes that Palestinians are always going to threaten the world with violence unless they achieve what they consider "justice." They are, according to her logic, an inherently violent people. What other people on the planet are considered a threat to world security if we do not give in to their own definitions of "justice"?

This op-ed is not meant to clear up her position on the conflict. It is meant to obscure it using nice words like "peace" and "justice" and "human rights" and "equality" that do not mean what they normally literally mean when used by the progressive Left and their Arab partners.

The entire article is misdirection away from Ilhan Omar's very problematic biases and positions. If she wants to clear the air, she should speak honestly, and not behind the layers of consultants that wrote and massaged this op-ed to say nothing about her real positions about Jews and Israel.



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Sunday, March 17, 2019

From Ian:

Victim of West Bank attack identified as IDF soldier Gal Keidan, 19
The Israel Defense Forces on Sunday identified the victim of a West Bank stabbing and shooting attack earlier in the day as Sgt. Gal Keidan, 19, from the southern city of Beersheba.

Keidan, who served in the IDF’s 334th Artillery Battalion, will be buried in the Beersheba Military Cemetery at 11 a.m. on Monday, the army said.

He will be posthumously promoted to the rank of staff sergeant.

Two other Israelis were critically injured in the attack, which began at around 9:45 a.m. near Ariel Junction.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a statement, conveyed his condolences to Keidan’s family.

US envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt responded to the attack on Twitter, saying his country “condemn[s] today’s brutal attack by a Palestinian terrorist who murdered at least 1 Israeli & injured others near Ariel.”

In a follow up post, Greenblatt said: “Disgustingly, but not surprisingly, Hamas & Palestinian Islamic Jihad welcomed the attack & no doubt the Palestinian Authority will reward the terrorist under its pay for slay policy.”

1 Israeli killed, 2 critically injured in West Bank terror shootings
One Israeli was killed and two were critically injured in a pair of shooting attacks in the northern West Bank on Sunday, the military said.

The attack began at around 9:45 a.m. near the Ariel Junction, where the terrorist assaulted a soldier with a knife and managed to gain control of his weapon, IDF spokesman Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus said.

The attacker then fired at passing vehicles, hitting a civilian in the first vehicle. A second vehicle was hit, but managed to flee the scene. A third car stopped, and the attacker, whom Conricus said “appears to be a Palestinian,” took it and fled the scene.

“I saw the terrorist. He fired at my vehicle and I ran away while it was still running. The terrorist then stole the car, and I saw him continue driving in the direction of Tel Aviv,” the driver of the third vehicle told the Ynet news site.

Conricus said that the suspect then continued to the nearby Gitai Junction, where he shot at a soldier standing at a hitchhiking post, injuring him.
Netanyahu, Rivlin condemn West Bank terror shootings, vow to apprehend attacker
Israeli leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin, condemned the terror attack that took place Sunday morning at a pair of junctions in the northern West Bank in which one Israeli was killed and two were injured.

“We are in the midst of pursuing the terrorists in two locations in the Ariel area,” Netanyahu said at the opening of the weekly cabinet meeting. “I affirm my support for the IDF soldiers, the Shin Bet and the security forces chasing the terrorists. I’m sure they will catch them… as we did in every previous case.”

The IDF said it was not immediately clear whether the shooter had acted alone.

“My thoughts are with the families who are right now coming to terms with the terrible news from the horrific terrorist attack, and with the security forces who are right now in pursuit of the terrorists. The State of Israel will seek out, find and defeat all those who attack us,” Rivlin tweeted.

Several lawmakers used the attack as a platform for political statements over how to best handle Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians.

Culture Minister Miri Regev said the attacks “were a direct result of the rampant incitement on the part of Ahmad Tibi, who on Friday demonstrated that he was not prepared to condemn the murder of an innocent child in her bed and encouraged martyrs simultaneously.”
Hamas and Islamic Jihad praise deadly West Bank terror shootings
The Palestinian Hamas and Islamic Jihad terror groups praised a pair of shooting attacks in the northern West Bank on Sunday, in which one Israeli was killed and two others were critically wounded, calling them “heroic.”

Early Sunday, close to the Ariel Junction, a terrorist assaulted a soldier with a knife, managed to gain control of his weapon and shot him dead, an IDF spokesman said.

The attacker then fired at multiple passing vehicles, hitting two cars and injuring a civilian, and then took another person’s automobile and fled in it, the spokesman said.

The suspect drove to the nearby Gitai Junction, where he shot at a soldier standing at a hitchhiking post, wounding him, and then continued on to Bruqin, an Palestinian village where Israeli security forces were pursuing him, the spokesman added.

“Hamas praises the heroic Salfit operation that happened this morning, which came in response to the occupation’s crimes,” Hamas said in a statement posted on its official Telegram account, referring to a Palestinian town near Gitai Junction. “This courageous and bold operation affirms that resistance, in all of its forms, is the most powerful and successful option to deter the occupation, foil its plans and protect and defend our people’s rights and holy sites.”

Continuing my re-captioning (and in this case, editing) of single-panel cartoons....





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